Aerisia: Land Beyond the Sunset by Sarah Ashwood



About the book:

The mystery of other worlds is not one Hannah Winters ever thought she’d solve. However, the day she spots a brown-robed stranger with a magical staff in a neighbor’s field is the day she also discovers Aerisia, a magical land beyond Earth’s sunset. Here in Aerisia, Hannah is believed to be the Artan, a legendary heroine prophesied to deliver Aerisia from the Dark Powers. Plenty of people, including the Simathe, a race of immortal warriors, and the Moonkind, people of the Moon, are willing to help her discover her true identity, but Hannah’s just an ordinary girl from Earth. She doesn’t have any latent magical abilities and she’s not the Artan. However, her allies aren’t seeing it that way. Neither are her enemies. In fact, Hannah’s life is in jeopardy nearly from the moment she arrives in Aerisia. And becoming the Artan may be the only way to survive…

My review:

I grabbed this book a while back, because I was intrigued by the idea and thought the cover was kind of cool. Due to my crazy schedule, it took me a while to get to it, but once I did I flew through it! It was a very enjoyable read.

At times, I’ll admit, Hannah frustrated me. But that’s because she was real – she behaved pretty much as I would expect a normal young woman to behave when she’s been basically kidnapped. Yet, even more importantly, she does try to grow and change, even though she tends to forget the progress and opt for trouble once in a while.

The world-building is wonderful, and the magic system is very interesting and well-crafted. I enjoyed hearing the backgrounds of the different peoples in Aerisia and how Ashwood developed each with a purpose. Wonderfully done!

If you like fantasy, you’ll enjoy Aerisia: Land Beyond the Sunset. But make sure you also get at least the second book in the series, because (*minor spoiler alert*) there is so much more to this story that we don’t know yet! I would certainly recommend this book to my friends.

Happy reading 🙂


Reclaiming Shilo Snow by Mary Weber


About the book:

She was far more capable than Earth’s leaders had accounted for—and they had no idea what she’d do next.
Known as a brilliant mind that could hack humanity’s darkest secrets, seventeen-year-old Sofi Snow is the most wanted teenager alive. She found her way to the icy, technologically brilliant planet of Delon to find Shilo, the brother everyone but Sofi believes is dead.
But as she and Ambassador Miguel partner to find her brother and warn those on Earth of Delon’s dark designs on humanity, Sofi’s memories threaten to overtake her, distorting everything she holds true. She knows the Delonese kept her in a dark, deceptive place . . . and destroyed a portion of her life. Now, the more they discover of Sofi’s past, the more Sofi feels herself unraveling—as each new revelation has her questioning the very existence of reality.
In this harrowing sequel to The Evaporation of Sofi Snow, Sofi and Miguel must trust each other and discover the secrets locked inside Sofi’s mind as the line between what’s real and what they imagine begins to slip away . . . threatening to take humanity with it.

My review:

For those of you who took my advice and read book one in this series, The Evaporation of Sofi Snow (you can read the review here, if you haven’t yet), you know it ended in one of those awful cliffhangers that made me want to scream, “WWWHHHHHYYYYYY????” Well, thankfully the wait is finally over, since Reclaiming Shilo Snow is set to be released in just a few days. And trust me, it was worth the wait.

While it took me a while to change gears from Weber’s Storm Siren world to her Sofi Snow world in the first book, I did not have that issue at all in Shilo Snow. The action picks up right where she left us hanging, and it does not quit until the end.

And she continues to peel back even more layers on Sofi and Miguel to reveal deeply scarred, yet dramatically beautiful characters that you can’t help but cheer for.

Weber did leave the ending a bit open, so I’m not sure if this is the last of the series or if she plans to continue the Snows’ adventures in this dystopian world or not. Either way, thank you Mary Weber for giving your readers some resolution and helping to ease the heartache you left us with last year. (Although, **minor spoiler alert** she did leave me with different heartache at the climax of the story!)

Thrilling, poignant, creative, fascinating…I definitely recommend you read Mary Weber’s Reclaiming Shilo Snow (and The Evaporation of Sofi Snow, if you haven’t experienced it yet.)

Many thanks to Thomas Nelson and NetGalley for the digital copy of this book for review purposes. I was not required to give a positive review. All opinions are my very own! 🙂

Adored: 365 Devotions for Young Women by Lindsay A. Franklin


From the book:

In an ever-changing world, we can be certain of one thing: we are beloved by God. Adored: 365 Devotions for Young Women tackles tough topics girls face, from bullying and social media to friendships and dating, all the while showing readers how infinitely precious they are in God’s sight.

Each day features an easy-to-read, relevant devotion paired with a scripture verse and journaling space to help readers reflect on the day’s message. With honest, poignant, and sometimes humorous text, every page will speak to the pressures and changes girls face, giving them real-world applications to find God in their hearts and in their lives. Perfect for everyday use, Adored will resonate with girls searching for truth and guidance. Gift givers will love this highly designed book featuring a beautiful, foiled cover, and two-color interior pages.

My Review:

What an “adored-able” devotional! Lindsay A. Franklin has designed a beautiful collection of thought-provoking and heart-touching reflections on God’s Word. From love to justice, from beauty to pain, these devotions cover just about every topic a young woman would be concerned about. And they are written in an easy-to-read, conversational tone that will speak easily to the hearts of teenaged girls.

If you know a young woman who longs to draw closer to God and to understand His Word more deeply, I’d highly recommend you get her a copy of Adored.

You can learn more and even get a free sample! Just hop on over to the Zondervan website.

I received a copy of this devotional from Handlebar Media in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my very own! 🙂


The List by Patricia Forde


From the Publisher: “Fahrenheit 451 meets The Giver for tweens in this gripping story about the power of words and the dangers of censorship.

“In the city of Ark, speech is constrained to five hundred sanctioned words. Speak outside the approved lexicon and face banishment. The exceptions are the Wordsmith and his apprentice Letta, the keepers and archivists of all language in their post-apocalyptic, neo-medieval world.

“On the death of her master, Letta is suddenly promoted to Wordsmith, charged with collecting and saving words. But when she uncovers a sinister plan to suppress language and rob Ark’s citizens of their power of speech, she realizes that it’s up to her to save not only words, but culture itself.”

While The List by Patricia Forde is categorized as a middle grade dystopian novel, I found it to be so much more than that. It is a compelling statement on the power of words to condemn, to incite, to change, to hurt, to heal, to love. Words are one thing that make us human, but they can also be used in horribly inhuman ways. Words can create, and they can destroy. And, as this story points out, if you can control someone’s words, you can control them. When we are not allowed to speak out, we can’t speak up for ourselves. And if we can’t speak up for ourselves, who will?

This is a lesson that young people desperately need: it’s the old “give them an inch, they’ll take a mile” idea. When you give up a freedom (the freedom of speech, in this case), you give those in power permission to take more and more away from you (usually in the guise of protecting you from harm) until you have no freedom left. And this story highlights that idea in a way that young people can understand and maybe even empathize with in some ways. It would be a terrific story to use in a middle grade classroom. I can only imagine the discussions it could spark.

I did enjoy reading The List and would recommend it to tweens and teens, not for its dystopian elements (which were nothing super extraordinary, but were decently well written), but for the greater lessons to be gleaned from its words.

The List will be released in America in August 2017.


Many thanks to Sourcebook Jabberwocky and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book. I was not required to give a positive review. All opinions are my very own! 🙂

The Glass Castle by Trisha White Priebe & Jerry B. Jenkins


Avery’s thirteenth birthday didn’t go exactly as she’d planned – after all, that was the day she was kidnapped by and old woman. The woman has taken her to the castle, where Avery is dropped off to hide in the unused areas of the castle with all of the orphaned thirteen-year-olds of the kingdom. There, Avery learns that even beautiful castles hold dark secrets. Desperate to escape and find her little brother and her father, Avery will need to uncover those darkest secrets and find the strength hiding in herself.

I had no idea what to expect when I started this story. I recognized the authors – Trisha White Priebe from A Sherlock Holmes Devotional – which I really like – and Jerry B. Jenkins from the Left Behind series (of course), as well as books like Riven and I, Saul. Honestly, the authors were why I decided to give this one a go. I didn’t realize how wrapped up in the story I would get…but it happened! It turned out to be a great coming-of-age fairy tale with well-crafted, interesting characters and enough mystery to keep you thoroughly engaged.

I would highly recommend this story to a wide variety of readers. As an adult, I definitely enjoyed it, and I can imagine that the target audience (middle grade youths) would relish it just as much. My only disappointment? The sequel (The Ruby Moon) doesn’t come out until the Fall of 2016!

Many thanks to Barbour Publishing and NetGalley for the free copy of this book for review purposes. I was not required to give a positive review. All opinions are my very own! 🙂

Search for the Shadow Key by Wayne Thomas Batson


Archer Keaton is more than just your average high schooler – he’s also a Dreamtreader, able to pass into the world of dreams to keep the evil from seeping out into the waking world. But when his neighbor, Rigby, and ex-friend, Kara, use their company, Dream, Inc., to take people on dream “safaris,” things start to go crazy, both in the dream and the Waking World. Archer needs help to find the Shadow Key and stop Rigby and Dream, Inc. from tearing apart the fabric of existence.

Search for the Shadow Key is actually book two of the Dreamtreaders series. I did not read the first book, but had no problem following the storyline and really getting into the tale. The dream world is beautifully imagined with no lack of detail. Archer is a great character, because he is such a typical teenager – he questions authority, he thinks he knows everything, his pride gets in his way, he speaks and acts before he thinks – but he has this extra responsibility of Dreamtreading that makes every move magnified in importance. That makes this more than just a fun and exciting story, but also teaches some important lessons – (as noted in the blurb on the back of the book) “resisting temptation, being a light in the darkness, and making wise choices.”

I did enjoy this book and would not hesitate to read the others in the series and to recommend it to teens (or anyone who likes Christian fantasy).

I received a free copy of this book from the BookLook Blogger Review program. I was not required to give a positive review. All opinions are my very own!! 🙂

*Note: Wayne Thomas Batson has another series called The Door Within that looks pretty cool too. If you’ve read it, let me know what you think…

Fire Prophet by Jerel Law


What if you could see the spiritual warfare that is taking place around us all of the time? Well, the Stone children can. After all, their mother is a nephilim – half-fallen-angel, half-human. Jonah, Eliza, and their little brother, Jeremiah, are quarterlings who have the ability to step into the hidden realm, interact with supernatural beings, and even engage in spiritual battles. They lead quite the exciting lives! Last year, Jonah and Eliza learned of their special abilities on a quest to save their mom. This year, after they find themselves under attack, Jeremiah joins them, along with all of the other quarterlings from around the world, in a sort of school for spiritual gifts. As they discover and learn to harness their talents, they must utilize them to save themselves from Abaddon and his demonic forces.

Jerel Law’s latest installment in the Sons of Angels Series, Fire Prophet, is a non-stop ride for young adults, filled with twists that lead the reader to a deeper understanding of both the spiritual realm and how God works with and through His children. It is wonderful to see how the kids form friendships and gain confidence as they face hardships in their determination to follow the will of Elohim. This series is a great introduction for young readers into spiritual warfare and a fabulous alternative to other youth series that are not edifying.

I received a free copy of this book from the BookSneeze Blogger Review program. I was not required to give a positive review. All opinions are my very own!