Sunday, June 27, 2010

Venom and Song

    Now having returned to the unusual world of Allyra, the renowned Seven Elven Lords struggle to meet up with the expectations of their fellow Elves. They must train to fight in the elite Vexbane form while they can. Meanwhile, the Spider King’s forces rally to locate and exterminate the elves. When bad turns to worse, the Lords must be ready to thwart the Spider King’s plans and end his reign of terror. But who knows what horrors the Spider King has kept locked away.

    This fantasy fiction novel definitely has a feel of its own. It has a unique combination of story styles: medieval, other-worldly, and contemporary. It even throws in a little harmless romance. It’s plot was well thought-out, despite a few minute details missed. Different from the previous novel, Curse of the Spider King, there were less main characters. What Mr. Batson and Mr. Hopper pulled off is that each of the 9 main characters’ individual characters were shown and developed well throughout. Most important were the story’s themes, such as trusting God at all times and fellowshipping with believers. I recommend this book to anyone who sees it on a shelf.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Reading List

I have a lot of projects this summer. I am doing a health class for school, so that I may have time to do an Advanced Biology class next year. Then, there is the fact that we are moving, so daily chores take up more time. I am also going to be part of high school staff for the Christian summer camp, Camp Gilead, for the 1st three weeks of August. All this to say, I wish I had more time for reading. My reading list has grown exceedingly as of late. The books in the picture are actually only two-thirds of my reading list.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Question

I have a question for all you readers. Every once in a while, I find a Christian movie that I really liked. Would it be okay for me to review any occasional one I find, or should I just stick to books?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Candid Room Tag

I was tagged by Christian Miles over at My Ink Spot with this interesting tag. Take a picture of your room before you clean it. So, here is my abode.

 Here is the first look at my room. Behind my clock is where I keep all my music. What you see in front of the paper is in fact a carving. Not my own, though. I also like a candle lit frequently. See if you can guess where I keep the matches. They are hidden behind/under/above something in this photo. I have to keep them hidden from my pyromaniac of a brother. :) There are a few unusual things in this photo as well, see if you can find them all. :)
Here is the other side of my room. I like the comic strip Pearls Before Swine (Good for you too, Beorn!) , as you can tell from the collection on my bed. My desk is pretty cluttered, as is obvious. As you can also see, my reading list is pretty big. Can you recognize any of the books? (despite the Pearls Before Swine collection, Beorn :)). I don't think I need to tag anyone this time, as I was tagged along with about 60 other people.

Giveaway Poll Winner

Well, the winner of the giveaway poll is A Star Curiously Singing! As soon as I reach 60 followers, I will begin the giveaway! So, get out there and tell all your friends!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Bones of Makaidos

http://library2.risingshadow.net/images/books/3880.jpg    The Bones of Makaidos is the fourth and last book in the Oracles of Fire series, written by Bryan Davis and published by Living Ink Books. In Second Eden, the wall of fire is all that separates Billy, Walter, Ashley, Elam, the Dragons, and the villagers from the coming invasion, and that itself will not hold long. Sapphira, Shiloh, and Bonnie reside in the Underworld, waiting to be given a chance to fight. Arramos, the evil one, plans to add Second Eden to the merging of Earth and Hades, in order to gain access to Heaven. One of Arramos’ weapons is Devin, the greatest dragon slayer to have lived. His other subtle trick is Mardon, who has found a way to steal the Oracle Acacia’s indestructibility for himself. Semiramis, Mardon’s mother, comes to Billy and gives away Arramos’ plans, but Elam has many doubts that she has their best interests in mind. With all these conflicts pressing into the dwellers of Second Eden, a sacrificial lamb must come forth to conquer the evil.

    I consider Bryan Davis’ books to be very complex and sometimes altogether confusing. This does not always work out for the better, but in the case of Bones of Makaidos, it worked out fantastically! Everything comes through in the end; every pressing conflict is resolved and temporary peace seems to have been attained. Something that set this book apart from the most of the series is the passage of time. At one point in the book, about four years are skipped. Looking back, I could not really say at which point it was; it was quite abrupt and surprising. This book shows the characters’ trust in God, or lack thereof, very well. When, in Eye of the Oracle, Davis shows the passage of time, Sapphira doesn’t age physically or even mentally quite so much. What sets this book apart from every other book in this series is the mental and physical improvement of the characters. This is very real and challenges us to be like them: having faith in God and following Him through whatever He sets out for us. This 674-page book earns five stars!

Monday, June 14, 2010

A Star Curiously Singing


A Star Curiously Singing, Kerry Nietz, Dark Trench Saga, Marcher Lord Press, Speculative Fiction, October 1, 2009, 308 pages.


Synopsis: If he fixes the robot, will he break his world? In a future ruled by sharia law machines are managed by debuggers, who in turn are owned by masters. Sandfly is a level 12 debugger. He is sent into Earth orbit to repair a robot-a robot that went on an experimental flight into deep space... And tore itself apart. As Sandfly digs into the mystery aboard the space station, he discovers what the bot heard around that distant star. He discovers that the bot heard...singing. As Sandfly pieces together the clues, the masters spread the trap before his feet. Everyone is racing to the same conclusion, but only one side welcomes what the singing represents.



My thoughts: A Star Curiously Singing is a jewel among speculative fiction. It takes a marvelous idea (the stream) and makes it modern technology: understandable and useful. The characters have great freedom in the sense that their emotions do not have to be shown to the reader very much, as they are themselves encouraged to forget emotion completely. However, at the end, emotion requires a strong foundation, which had been growing throughout the book. Above all, it shows God (A~A³) very clearly through natural revelation (revelation through God’s creation). It portrays the concept of “new birth” (in the guise of “reprogramming”) very accurately. Overall, this book is a five-star wonder!

My rating: 5 stars

Buy A Star Curiously Singing

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Starfire

Starfire : The Mending, Book 1    Starfire, the first installment in The Mending, is written by Stuart Vaughn Stockton and is published by Marcher Lord Press. In a far-off world, Rathe, a Yanguch Saurian, was born of a low status. Due to a lucky encounter, he has been given the chance to rise up and take his place among the finest fighters. However, on his first assignment, he becomes the subject of a grand plot to destroy either his nation or the opposing empire, the Herians. As time grows short, he must protect the weapon from the Herians as they tirelessly attempt to retrieve it.
    Starfire is a unique sci-fi treat. It combines the ferocity and reality of Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park with the knowledge and complexity of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord Of The Rings. What I enjoyed throughout this book was that you can soon relate to everything that is going on, despite the scale barrier. The best sci-fi that I have read has always found a way to bring the reader between the pages into the reality of the tale. This is most certainly how I felt when I read Starfire. This is a great book to lose yourself in during any season, if you enjoy futuristic fiction.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

The Strange Man

     The Strange Man is the first title in the Coming Evil series, written by Greg Mitchell. Dras Weldon is a college dropout looking for a job who parties at night and recovers during the day. He considers himself a Christian, while his brother Jeff, a pastor, does not. One day, an unusual storm arrives at their little town of Greensboro. What this storm brings forces Dras to reconsider his views on the supernatural and to realize true devotion for his best friend-Rosalyn Myers.
The Strange Man (The Coming Evil, Book 1)     Before I get started on my criticism of this book, I will have to say that if you plan to read this, go for it! The rest of this review contains spoilers, so I give my approval of the book now. If anyone reading this has read A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens, (spoilers here for it too) the ending of each book is quite similar. There are some important differences, though. In A Tale of Two Cities, Sydney Carton, a reclusive drunkard, comes to “save himself” through one “righteous” act. He is shown to be a Christ-figure: one who dies in the place of an innocent person. The problem with this is that man cannot earn salvation by anything he does. When I finished The Strange Man, I had to do a double-take. Dras is beaten and killed for what he was thought to have done, but didn’t. He could have stopped it, but he knew this would change Rosalyn’s mind about Christianity. I did not get this message clearly the first time through, and was struck by the similarity between the two books. Then, I didn’t recall exactly where it said he earned salvation by doing this, and re-read it. At this point, I did not find any statement, and realized my mistake. Instead of dying for his salvation, he died, not for Rosalyn’s salvation, but for her gaze to be moved from the world to Christ, who Himself would then give her salvation. All in all, this was a great book, very pleasing to those who enjoy suspenseful monster material and yet satisfying to the Christian.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Winner!

And so, after sifting through all the followers, comments, and the two blog posts, I came up with 66 entries! This has greatly increased the blog's publicity, and I thank you all for your faithfulness!

So, without further ado, the winner is...






is...





is...





none other than...






the fortunate...





very important...





one and only...






Goldarrow! Congratulations! Please comment or email me with your mailing address. If you comment it will not be published. For everyone else, I hope to be hosting another giveaway once I reach 60 followers!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Tomorrow!

Tomorrow I announce who won the giveaway! Last chance for those who want second or third entries! This has been a great growth time for this blog, and so I would to thank all of you who visited, followed, and entered! Good luck to all!