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Ashes of Glass is on Book Sirens!

I am so thankful that Book Siren s has approved Ashes of Glass! If you’re interested in snagging a copy, just follow this link: Ashes of Glass on Book Sirens.

A servant struggling to survive.
A prince becoming a leader.
A snake seeking power.

Arella Marceau, once the daughter of a wealthy merchant, finds herself diminished to a lowly servant who must obey the every whim of her stepmother. Then she meets Freddie who is handsome, kind, strong, and of course, very charming. They spend an afternoon together, exploring ruins, becoming lost in the forest, and dealing with gypsies and Arella begins to fall for the young man. When a mysterious debt arises, it inevitably tears Arella away from what she thought might have been a shred of happiness.

Arella accepts her dismal fate, but working as a scullery maid at the palace is a tumultuous task. For it is soon revealed to her that Freddie is Prince Friederic, heir to the throne of Ormandy. Even though discovery would mean life-shattering consequences, Freddie and Arella defy social expectations and meet in the safety of a secret garden. To complicate things further, Arella’s creditor seems to be frighteningly fascinated with her, as well as with the monarchy. What kind of secrets does he keep behind his black eyes?

As Arella’s life spins out of control, she must hold to her love for Freddie and to her belief that God has a perfect plan.

my writing

Ashes of Glass Revamped

So I have a confession to make… You know that book I wrote? The Cinderella retelling? Well, I’ve been avoiding it. I’ve been telling myself that I need to revisit it and do some editing and whatnot, but I was afraid I’d be disappointed (and maybe a little embarrassed) with it since it was my first attempt at self-publishing. I was wrong. I was actually pleasantly surprised.

I read through the whole book and made some formatting adjustments and fixed some grammar issues. I also tweaked some things that were not explained well or worded awkwardly. All in all, I’m happy with the final result. I mean, obviously, it’s not going to be a book for everyone. I’d say it’s for people who love a clean, sweet, and faith-based fairytale retelling.

If you’re thinking that maybe you’d like to give it a read, but you’re not sure you want to actually buy it, never fear! It is coming soon to Book Sirens (YAY! *does a happy dance*). I’ve uploaded the files and now I’m just waiting for final approval. So keep your eyes peeled for an update. I will be posting about it as soon it’s official. Till then, add it to your Goodreads bookshelves.

Ashes of Glass on Goodreads

Ashes of Glass on Amazon

Back cover blurb:

A servant struggling to survive.
A prince becoming a leader.
A snake seeking power.

Arella Marceau, once the daughter of a wealthy merchant, finds herself diminished to a lowly servant who must obey the every whim of her stepmother. Then she meets Freddie who is handsome, kind, strong, and of course, very charming. They spend an afternoon together, exploring ruins, becoming lost in the forest, and dealing with gypsies and Arella begins to fall for the young man. When a mysterious debt arises, it inevitably tears Arella away from what she thought might have been a shred of happiness.

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Arella accepts her dismal fate, but working as a scullery maid at the palace is a tumultuous task. For it is soon revealed to her that Freddie is Prince Friederic, heir to the throne of Ormandy. Even though discovery would mean life-shattering consequences, Freddie and Arella defy social expectations and meet in the safety of a secret garden. To complicate things further, Arella’s creditor seems to be frighteningly fascinated with her, as well as with the monarchy. What kind of secrets does he keep behind his black eyes?

As Arella’s life spins out of control, she must hold to her love for Freddie and to her belief that God has a perfect plan.

Book Reviews

Waterfall (River of Time #1) by Lisa Tawn Bergren

This was my second time reading Waterfall, but I still enjoyed every bit of it! 

“Courage is not the absence of fear, but the decision that something is more important than fear.” 

The main character Gabriella was absolutely amazing. She was brave and intelligent and kind, but not perfect – I actually really enjoyed being inside her head and getting to know her. Bergren does an excellent job keeping things interesting and balancing between Gabi’s thoughts and actions. The love interest, Marcello, was definitely your chivalrous knight in shining armour. I did like him; although, I felt we didn’t get to know him super well. Also, their relationship wasn’t quite as developed as I would have liked. But, hey, there are two more books. So we have time for that.

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“Sometimes the heart tells us to venture where the mind fears to tread.”

The setting was 14th-century Italy and Bergren made it feel quite authentic. It’s clear that she did her research. Her writing was also delightful. It was not flowery, but it was engaging. I felt drawn into the story from the very start and there was no point where I felt like skimming because I was getting bored.     

My greatest qualm, though, is the title. It’s beautiful and compelling, but while reading, I never made a connection. I get that the girls fell into a “river of time” and fell down a “waterfall” into the 14th century, but that was never brought up in the book. 

Lastly, this was a clean read.

“We all have freedom of choice. Over and over again, minute by minute. How will you live your life? For yourself? Or for others? For something good? For love?” 

I definitely recommend this book to those who love an adventure tinged history and romance.  

 

Book Reviews

Verity by Lisa T. Bergren

This was an enjoyable adventure about a brave young woman who left her home to independently create a living for herself. Despite the place of women during this time period, Verity bravely left home and with diligence and hard work, carved a place for herself in the world. Along the way, she met Duncan’s brother, Ian, who helped her in her endeavour. Their relationship was sweet and slow; although, at times I found there was too much thinking about the other.

The author did a lovely job of creating the setting -it was a colourful and exciting world. However, the plot had some valleys. There didn’t seem to be that forward drive that gives a novel its energy. Verity’s journey and shop opening were too easy for me – there was no conflict that generated intensity.    

Lastly, this was a clean read which made it all the more enjoyable.  

P.S. Isn’t the cover beautiful? That dress is gorgeous. XD

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Another beautiful cover…

Keturah (The Sugar Baron’s Daughters #1)

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Book Reviews

The Swiss Courier by Tricia Goyer and Mike Yorkey

 

A riveting historical adventure.

Since my grandparents are Dutch I have heard and read many stories set in Holland during WWII, but I have rarely encountered stories from the Swiss point of view. As a result, the Swiss Courier was interesting and exciting!

The characters were dynamic and unique. Gabi was sweet and brave and Bruno Kassler was terrifying and vicious. The story is told from quite a few different points of view Image result for shocked gif disneywhich was at first a little disappointing since I thought the book was about Gabi, but I as the story went on, I grew to enjoy it. One thing, though, I kind of wish Gabi had discovered Jean-Pierre’s identity a little sooner. (By the way, that was such a shocker!) Maybe, though, this would have taken away from the surprise at the end?

Although this was written by two authors, there wasn’t a striking difference between their writing. This was nice since sometimes when two authors write their separate pieces, there is a bit of a jolt when jumping from one to the other. Lastly, with the writing, I found that at times there was a lot of extra information – about a handgun, or airplane, or person. I felt that these details weighed down the story instead of complementing it.

Lastly, this was a clean read!    

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Ta ta for now!

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Book Reviews

The Warrior Maiden by Melanie Dickerson

Going into this book, I was a little skeptical since I wasn’t a huge fan of Dickerson’s last book. (The Orphan’s Wish.) However, this one did pick things up a little.Image result for mulan gif

I’ll start with saying that I’m really, really, glad that Dickerson stayed true to Mulan’s ethnicity. It was nice that she was open to presenting a non-white female antagonist. I also loved Mulan’s character. She was fierce and independent, but still kind and gentle. I think of all the books by Dickerson that I have read so far, Mulan is my favourite female character. She was stronger than the others and didn’t let men do all the fighting for her. I can’t say I was a huge fan of Wolfgang… He was okay, but I felt that there wasn’t a great deal of development or depth. A lot of the time spent from his POV, was him obsessing over whether or not Mulan was in love with him. This was also the case for Mulan’s POV and combined, it made me rather bored. On that note… about 50% of the way, the action just died off and I wondered, “What is left to happen?” It picked up again at 70%, but I ended up skimming most of the stuff between 50% and 70% (the majority was simply Mulan and Wolfgang trying to decide whether or not they loved the other. A little speculation is fine, but after a bit, this became tedious).

Another thing that really bugged me, was the world building. This is a new area for Dickerson so she should set the stage, but I got very little. I was left with the skeleton of a picture in my mind. This was similar to other aspects of her writing too. There wasn’t quite enough description. It was simple and to the point. Which is sometimes fine, but Dickerson has written a great number of books already so I expected more colour.  

An enormous positive factor was that this was a clean read. There were some kisses (maybe more than other Dickerson novels?), but they weren’t overly graphic.

I recommend this book to those who enjoy fairytale retellings. Although I warn you, the romance is rather sappy (and a touch cliche?). But maybe you don’t mind?

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Thanks for reading!

Have you read A Warrior Maiden? What were your thoughts?

Book Reviews

The Songbird and the Secret by Celena Janton

Synopsis: 

When Katharina Simeon makes a secret promise, she never stops to wonder what consequences may come of it. Yet 200 years later, far from her home in 18th century England, that very promise is carried across time and the Atlantic to rest upon her descendant…

Melissa Benjamin discovers her eleventh great grandmother’s journal while researching her senior history project. Sent down a path she never imagined venturing, Katharina’s intriguing story leads Melissa on a quest to find the parents she’s never known even as she unravels a secret spanning generations. During her search, history buff and schoolgirl crush, Tom Berington, offers to help… but will his aid come at a price too high to pay? And what secrets of his own is Tom hiding?

The Songbird and the Secret is a blend of historical and contemporary Christian fiction sweeping from 18th century England to pre-Revolutionary America, onward to life today. As the reader discovers Katharina’s thrilling story along with Melissa, a mysterious tale weaves together the lives of these two women separated by hundreds of years but joined through an ancient family secret. When each is faced with heartrending disappointment, will she cling to the one who loves her unconditionally?

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Review: 

What a lovely read! One of my favorite aspects was the way it spanned from the 1700s to modern times. This gave it such a colorful and broad spectrum. And it was done well! Janton made each time period feel real and alive. I also enjoyed the mystery, it kept me interested and my mind was constantly trying to solve it.

There were quite a few characters which can sometimes be confusing, but in this instance, each different part of the story was kept clear. The characters were colorful and it was fun to get to know them all. Melly and Katherina were especially loveable! Although I can’t say I was a huge fan of Tom, I was not fully convinced to trust him.

Lastly, this was a clean read with somewhat of a focus on Godly relationships. I liked how Janton showed the ramifications of a marriage that is not focused on Christ vs. the blessings of one that is focused on Christ.

I recommend this book to those who love historical fiction mixed with romance, mystery, and contemporary.  

Book Reviews

The Patriot Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse

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What a pleasant read! Thank you, NetGalley for providing me with a free copy. (Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.)

The history was on point and the historical characters who were mere shadows in my mind became real and colorful. Woodhouse definitely did her research, but did not allow this to confine her imagination.

One of my favorite things was the place that Christianity had. Faith was a strong, Godly woman who was inspiring not only to the other characters in the book, but also to me, the reader. Although the romance was a bit slow, I loved how Faith and Mathew built their love off of friendship.

Moving on to the writing, it was okay. Maybe a bit plain for my taste. I think out of everything, it was what brought this story down a notch.

Altogether, this was an enjoyable and clean read. I recommend it to those who love historical romance.