Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Review: By the Stars

By the Stars By the Stars by Jessica Marie Baumgartner
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

After being lucky enough to win the ebook of By the Stars by Jessica Marie Baumgartner--courtesy of a giveaway hosted by her publisher, European Geeks Publishing--I devoured this book! Fans of space travel stories won't want to miss this first book in the Embracing Entropy series.

The Earth is dying, and a benevolent alien race known as the Cih'lmarians has come to rescue the surviving remnants of humanity. Allie boards the main craft transporting them back to the Cih'lmarian homeworld along with her two young children, Maddie and Gwen. Allie's military husband, Adam, pilots the other craft bound for the distant planet that will become humanity's new home.

As Allie and her girls begin to settle into life aboard the spacecraft, they struggle with missing Earth and with missing Adam during their 3-month long voyage. Soon, Adam's ship is knocked off course, and communications with his craft are lost. Now, Allie must stay strong as they await word of the shuttlecraft and begin to build a new life that involves forming new friendships and assimilating with the culture of their alien benefactors.

This story was beautifully crafted, with very well-drawn characters and a rich alien culture that's unique from any other in fiction. I'm super excited to discover what's next for Allie and her family in the sequel!

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Sunday, August 9, 2015

Discover AFTERNOON, a new YA Novella by Robert Lampros

Title:            Afternoon
Author:        Robert Lampros
ISBN:          9781515259800
Formats:      Amazon (paperback) , Kindle, Nook
Release Date: 8/3/15
Pages:          108

book summary:
Afternoon is a novella for young adults about courage, faith in Jesus Christ, and growing up in a surreal and challenging world.

author bio:
Robert Lampros lives in St. Louis, Missouri.  He earned a Bachelor's degree in English Literature from Washington University in St. Louis.  Afternoon is the second book that he has published.

My Review:

I immensely enjoyed Andrew's journey through his junior year of high school, from paintball games with his family, to the stresses of his academics, a near-death experience that leaves him knowing he has more work to do on Earth for the Lord, his job at a local coffee shop/restaurant, and planning a mission trip over the summer after graduation. Yes, this guy has a lot on his plate, both emotionally and in terms of the demands of a busy student's life, so I connected with him on that level and rooted for him to succeed at all of these challenges.

Through it all, Andrew struggles with faith and questions of why he's still alive. He also struggles to maintain his relationships with friends through the busy year--and faces the growing realization of his own role in the failure of his previous romance with the girl he loves, Jane. While they were dating, Andrew hadn't shown how much he appreciated her, and so she distanced herself from him. Maybe, just maybe, he can get a second chance with her...

AFTERNOON is a feel-good, fun and quick read, laced with wit and humor, and I hope you check it out and enjoy it as much as I did.