All was rosy for the Burnhams till they went on a year-long holiday. Three family members returned with a nightmare that would plague them for the rest of their lives, while little Eleanor never made it back at all. She simply vanished on a nice sunny day on the beach, only to appear in a cave far away from her family. That marked the start of a life-changing experience that saw her raised by unusual animals. Her training in the wild molded her into a ruthless young predator, not unlike her tutors. She soon found out that she was now an assassin created to carry out the will of her vengeful animal captors. Ellie embraced her new life, but her mind kept pulling up images of her old life that featured a happy family. Would she chase the freedom she once had, or would she stay a killing machine?
J.E Lynch’s Animals brings a startling folktale to life. The book’s intriguing plot piques curiosity early on and sustains it all through the story. It features animals running a covert recruitment program and feels like a metaphor reflecting our nature and actions as humans, like George Orwell’s allegorical novella Animal Farm. Even though Lynch tries to present truths in an unusual way, he doesn’t leave you scratching your head. His themes are clear, thought-provoking, and fascinating.
Lynch is great at stimulating the senses with very descriptive sentences, relying more on simple words than flowery language. I love how the author approaches the main character’s evolution. He leaves just enough clues to show there was a chance she could change course without making you feel it was inevitable. The animals also had distinctive personalities that resonated with me. I found myself rooting for some and scoffing at others, a sign that I was heavily invested in the characters.
I breezed through all 300 pages of this book. I’m not sure I’ve finished a book of that size in such a short time. I definitely have the story’s pace and intrigue to thank for that. And to top it off, the story ends with a smashing cliff-hanger. Good thing the sequel is out already. So, I don’t have to wait to get my paws on it.
Animals is a thought-provoking young adult novel that is daring, creative, and immensely entertaining.
Pages: 303 | ASIN: B07NQK2HXN
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The Roar of a Dragon by Robert Blanchard is an adventurous fantasy narrated by Aidan, who begins the story from his childhood and humble beginnings in the countryside. The story develops from Aidan’s growing up on a farm and learning about the necessities of life. He details his family life and precisely how his upbringing prepares him for an initially traditional life, then unexpectedly changes. Aidan quickly discovers that the life he was raised for, and his destiny, is far more than he could imagine.
A simple twist in events, and realization by Aidan, propels him into a different life. He constantly struggles with dreams of his mother and a past and future that he learns to accept. The challenges of Aidan’s coming of age and developing into a solid and noble role are well-written with deep compassion and ambition.
As Aidan struggles with his fate and many obstacles ahead, he also grapples with his emotions and struggles to fulfill his soldier training. The book is more than a fantasy as it’s a deeply personal account of a young man’s transition from a naïve farmer’s son to someone who can make a difference in battle and beyond.
The characters are well woven into the story, shaping Aidan’s life and development into a bigger world that’s dangerous and exciting. It quickly becomes increasingly clear that Aidan’s life will play a significant role in a conquest that will require him to prove himself. The story beautifully explores Aidan’s life and his inner thoughts during his growth. He narrates every stage of his journey with exceptional clarity, with just enough detail and flavor to continuously engage the reader.
The Roar of the Dragon is a fantastic story of adventure and fighting battles, both literal and personal, with a rich character layer and development. Each scene is well described to paint authentic, rustic landscapes in a surreal fantasy world that comes to life. Aidan’s life is full of vibrant action that keeps the pages turning once you begin reading. He faces both external forces, from dragons and war, and his internal conflict.
The book is an incredible read, and you’ll easily move through the story quickly with anticipation for the subsequent development. The Roar of the Dragon is entertaining and well structured, detailing Aidan’s ability to face and conquer various levels of conflict in a unique fantasy world.
Pages: 280 | ASIN: B074BCDYTH
Tags: action, adventure, author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, coming of age, ebook, epic fantasy, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, kindle, kobo, literature, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, Robert Blanchard, story, suspense, sword and sorcery, The Roar of a Dragon, thriller, writer, writing, young adult
Unlikely follows two friends who investigate mysterious activities in an abandoned house and uncover something unexpected. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?
The inspiration was to write a story about people who live in a smaller community. Where life goes at a slower pace. Where if everyone does not know each other, they know of the person. Where everything happens the same. So, when the two friends discover something unusual it gives one friend the opportunity to branch out and discover something new.
Nate and Zachary are intriguing characters. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?
I wanted personalities that were opposite but able to get along; to show how a sense of adventure versus a sense of logic complement each other. As the story progresses the roles of adventure and logic are sometimes swapped.
What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?
You should be able to guess one if you have already read the book. Friendship, the other one is the pressure of pleasing your father.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
My next book is a YA called Watchers Eye and comes out the summer of 2021.
Posted in Interviews
Tags: adventure, author, author interview, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, ebook, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, kindle, kobo, literature, mystery, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, story, Unlikely, urban fantasy, urban fiction, writer, writing, Wynsome Peters, young adult
A camping trip sounded like such a wonderful idea–friends, family, and a bit of an adventure. Clarence Griffin and his friends are a unique group with talents and knowledge that, on an ordinary day, just make them interesting and fun. Today, however, their skills may just save their lives. When the group experiences what they all believe to be an earthquake, their plans to enjoy the trip are not thwarted–they soldier on. It’s when the ground opens up and they disappear into a world like none of them could ever have dreamed that they begin to believe this will be much more than their normal adventure.
Grotto of Chaos, by Christopher Knox, is a young adult thriller and the first in a series centered around Clarence Griffin. From cover to cover, the group of friends are met head-on with otherworldly challenges and use their wits and their talents to fight their way out of one predicament after another. The circle of friends is met head on by everything from a rat beast to a dinosaur, but their resourcefulness far outweighs anything that comes their way. Clarence and his crew are a fantastic bunch of young adult heroes.
As a teacher, I am always on the lookout for engaging books that are both readable, not overwhelming in length and of high-interest to my more avid readers. Knox more than meets all of these expectations with Grotto of Chaos. Clarence and his friends are all relatable, offer bits of humor that young readers will appreciate, and give all of us a cast of everyday superheroes that offer a new and refreshing take on the young adult genre.
One of the most appealing aspects of Knox’s work is the constant dialogue between the main characters. Young readers tend to gravitate toward books with characters who sound like them. The banter between Clarence and his sister, Penelope, makes for an entertaining read for children at this age. In addition, Knox does a fabulous job of representing a diverse friend group with different interests and talents, and each character is given his/her moment to shine.
I highly recommend Knox’s writing to anyone looking to introduce young readers to a new series of adventure stories. The main characters in Grotto of Chaos will appeal to all readers, and the constant action will keep readers coming back for more from Clarence and his pals.
Pages: 210 | ASIN: B08WVX48FY
Tags: adventure, author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, childrens book, Christopher Knox, ebook, education, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, Grotto of Chaos: The Exploits of Clarence Griffin Book 1, historical fiction, kindle, kobo, literature, nook, novel, parent, read, reader, reading, story, student, teacher, writer, writing, young adult
Watch steampunk technology and high fantasy witchcraft clash in this heroine’s fast-paced, epic journey to rescue her father from dragons and reveal the evil secrets of the noble court.
On the run from the royal army in a giant mechanical centipede, sixteen-year-old Jade Sol embarks on a dangerous adventure to help her father escape from the Isle of Dragons—a land of untamed magic that some believe only exists in myth.
When Jade is cornered by soldiers, a mysterious witch named Miria Atkins rescues her, calling on spirits from a magical realm to channel their mystical energy into light and matter. Jade begs Miria and the sorceress’s mechanist brother, Dan, to join her quest.
The siblings resist at first, but their hearts soften when they hear of her father’s fate. Their own parents had attempted an expedition from Vansh to the Isle of Dragons years ago and never returned. Together, the trio of young heroes journey across the feudal countryside trek across the sea to become the first humans to reach the elusive Isle of Dragons.
Die-hard readers of Angelique S. Anderson’s Dracosinum Tales and Jessica Drake’s Dragon Riders of Elantia series will find L. A. Thompson’s writing magnetic, impassioned, and clever in this novel’s twisting plot. The first in a trilogy.
Posted in book trailer
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The Literary Titan Book Awards are awarded to books that have astounded and amazed us with unique writing styles, vivid worlds, complex characters, and original ideas. These books deserve extraordinary praise and we are proud to acknowledge the hard work, dedication, and imagination of these talented authors.
Gold Award Winners
Silver Award Winners
Visit the Literary Titan Book Awards page to see award information.
Posted in Literary Titan Book Award
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No Man’s Land by Ben Magid is a science fiction thriller set in a dystopian world where robots have killed all humans. All except the last girl remaining on Earth– Rebel Anne Rae. She learns how to disguise herself and her behavior to pass undetected as a human being among the robots, collectively known as the Mech. Under her care is a Mech called Thomas, for whom she creates a heart. Thomas slowly gains emotions, curiosity and basically evolves towards becoming a singularity. Together they work to reunite Rebel with her species.
Rebel was a great character- nerdy, strong, and resourceful. In some ways, she reminded me of Mark Watney’s character from The Martian. She keeps finding ways out of sticky situations, never despairing for too long. However, it is nowhere near as science-heavy as The Martian. Technical details about the Mech are hastily explained or just skipped, but it makes up in adventure what it lacks in scientific explanations. Sometimes science fiction can get a little slow and dense with all the intricate details about the world-building and aliens/robots, but this was definitely not the case here. Thomas was also a highlight of the book. I liked seeing his development as he acquired the capacity to feel and express emotions.
I was intrigued by the cover of this book. It’s a pair of cyborg-esque hands carefully holding a metallic heart. I’m accustomed to looking at science fiction thrillers with explosions and rockets and dark backgrounds and determined-looking individuals on the cover– so I was drawn to the bright hues of this one. The rest of the story is also just as intriguing and somewhat subversive. There was a strong female lead who was in control and not dependent on any men-related deus ex machinas to save the day. There were also fun references thrown in the mix, like to Malcolm Gladwell’s ten thousand hour rule in Outliers. The Mech were bizarrely given real human names, like Thomas Jefferson. All these unexpected nuggets made the story a lot more odd and interesting.
While the idea of robots taking over humanity is a bit of a trope at this point, Ben Magid uses his solid literary skills to create an imaginative future with intriguing characters that will keep you invested throughout the story. It was a lighter but equally gripping story about a girl’s quest to fight the odds. No Man’s Land is for science fiction enthusiasts as well as for readers looking for an engrossing young adult novel that never forgets to entertain it’s readers.
Pages: 328 | ASIN: B08MBFHPVJ
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The Lightning Knight follows a young noble who is reluctantly tasked with training a boy that is destined to save the world. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?
The story sort of found itself in a way. I love the idea of the classic hero’s journey, but wanted to have a twist on it. I found having Oliver in the role of mentor, and the story from his perspective was super interesting. Beyond that, I loved the idea of having the mentor not really knowing much more than the person he was training. It really makes it seem real and lived in, versus the cookie-cutter this is the hero and you know what his deal is.
Oliver is an interesting and well developed character. What were some driving ideals behind his character development?
I really wanted to capture the essence of what it was like to be a teenager – the extreme emotions, the big thoughts and ideas with the lack of experience and maturity, and all of that. He really starts out a bit naïve to how the world works, and his sheltered wealthy life hasn’t done him any favors with what’s really going on in the world. He teeters on the line of extreme emotions, particularly confidence and lack thereof. I wanted someone who really could exemplify the goodness of being a teenager, and the angst and confusion as well.
What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?
Some major themes were haves vs have nots, identity, choice, prejudice, and love. The story really tries to touch upon a bunch of different things but ultimately at the end of the day, it’s about adversity and how you handle everything life throws at you, good or bad.
This is book one in The Knights of Nine series. What can readers expect in book two?
Book two will follow a different character to begin with until they meet Oliver and continue his journey. We’ll get to see a different part of the world, and even a different culture or three.
Posted in Interviews
Tags: adventure, author, author interview, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, coming of age, ebook, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, kindle, kobo, literature, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, Sean P Valiente, story, suspense, sword and sorcery, The Lightning Knight, writer, writing, young adult