Blog Tour: The Quest for the Leviathan by Amanda Tero || Spotlight, Review, and GIVEAWAY!!!

Are sea monsters a real thing? What about fire-breathing dragons? According to the Bible, there is a fire-breathing sea creature who really existed: the leviathan. Amanda Tero brings this dragon to life in her newest short story, “Quest for Leviathan.” Join Anath and his crew of ninety-nine rowers as they face the waves of the Mediterranean Sea and the power of Leviathan.

About the Book

Leviathan took the life of his father.

Anath has spent three years preparing for the voyage that will end the threat of Leviathan. Yet as the Valor launches into the depths of the Mediterranean, an inward quest also begins, taking Anath to depths he is not willing to face.

Purchase an e-copy on Amazon or order a paperback.
Add to your Goodreads shelf.

My Review

Quest for Leviathan is about a young man, Anath, and his journey towards conquering the Leviathan.

Since it was a short story, there wasn’t much space for character development or nearly anything of that sort, but Anath was portrayed well, as was the main storyline (though the beginning and the end felt more developed than the actual story itself). Of course, it felt a little rushed, as all short stories are, but overall it was well done!

The Gospel is very clearly portrayed and Amanda did it very well! In addition, this was historical fiction based on a time of the Bible that is not very well documented, and it was really interesting to read a piece based on the Leviathan, which I hadn’t done before.

My Ranking

3/5

Things liked-

  • discussed a rarely discussed topic
  • good development for a short story
  • gospel portrayed well

Things disliked-

  • felt a bit rushed
  • the action felt a bit cheated: the beginning and end was more developed

Giveaway

Amanda is giving away TWO print copies of “Quest for Leviathan” to one winner — one for you, and one for your friend!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the Author

Amanda Tero began her love for words at a young age—reading anything she could get her hands on and penning short stories as young as age eight. Since graduation, she has honed her writing skills by dedicated practice and study of the writing craft. She began her journey of publication with a few short stories that she had written for her sisters and continued to add to her collection with other short stories, novellas, and novels. It is her utmost desire to write that which not only pleases her Lord and Savior, but also draws the reader into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ.

Email: amandaterobooks@gmail.com || Website || Facebook || Instagram || Pinterest || Blog || Goodreads || Amazon

Blog Tour

June 8 – With a Joyful Noise (Release Day Post)
Resting Life (Spotlight, Review)
The World of the Writer (Review)
Authoring Arrowheads (Review)
Purely by Faith Review (Review, Interview)
June 9 – Victoria’s Book Nook (Spotlight, Review, Giveaway)
Bekah’s Books (Spotlight, Review, Interview)
June 11 – Clothed with Scarlet (Spotlight, Review, Giveaway)
Reveries Reviews (Review)
June 12 – Chosen Vessels (Spotlight, Review)
My Purple Pen (Review)
Read Another Page (Review)
June 13 – Once Upon an Ordinary (Review)
Maidens for Modesty (Review)
Yahweh Sisters (Review)
June 14 – Honey Rock Hills (Review)
Life of Heritage Corner (Spotlight, Review, Interview, Giveaway)
Kaylee’s Kind of Writes (Review, Interview)
June 15 – The Red-Hooded Writer (Review)
Blossoms and Blessings (Spotlight, Review, Interview, Giveaway)
Lit Aflame (Review, Interview)
June 16 – The Left-Handed Typist (Review)
Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen (Review, Interview, Giveaway)
June 18 – Great Books for God’s Girls (Review, Interview)
Peculiar Miss Darcy (Character Interview)
June 19 – Done in Love (Spotlight, Review, Interview, Giveaway)
Creating Romance (Spotlight, Review, Giveaway)
June 20 – Keturah’s Korner (Review, Interview)
Rock and Minerals 4 Him (Spotlight, Review, Giveaway)
June 21 – A Baker’s Perspective (Review, Giveaway, Character Spotlight)
Christian Author: A.M. Heath (Review, Interview)
June 22 – Writings, Ramblings, and Reflections (Review)
Views from the Window Friend (Review)
Hunting for Truth (Spotlight, Review, Giveaway)
June 23 – Reading on the Edge (Spotlight)
Summer Snowflakes (Review, Giveaway)
June 25 – With a Joyful Noise (Giveaway Winner Announced)

Thank you to the author, Amanda Tero, for providing me with a free e-ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review; I was not required to write a positive review.

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Book Review: Legendary by Stephanie Garber

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About the Book-

A heart to protect. A debt to repay. A game to win.

After being swept up in the magical world of Caraval, Donatella Dragna has finally escaped her father and saved her sister Scarlett from a disastrous arranged marriage. The girls should be celebrating, but Tella isn’t yet free. She made a desperate bargain with a mysterious criminal, and what Tella owes him no one has ever been able to deliver: Caraval Master Legend’s true name.

The only chance of uncovering Legend’s identity is to win Caraval, so Tella throws herself into the legendary competition once more—and into the path of the murderous heir to the throne, a doomed love story, and a web of secrets…including her sister’s. Caraval has always demanded bravery, cunning, and sacrifice. But now the game is asking for more. If Tella can’t fulfill her bargain and deliver Legend’s name, she’ll lose everything she cares about—maybe even her life. But if she wins, Legend and Caraval will be destroyed forever.

Welcome, welcome to Caraval…the games have only just begun.

My Review-

Caravel is one of my favorite YA fiction books, and I was very excited to read its sequel, Legendary! While Caravel is written from the perspective of Scarlett (the older sister), Legendary is from the perspective of Donatella, the younger sister, and it was lots of fun reading the alternate perspective!

While this book is set in the same world as the first one, it almost seems entirely different: all the characters come back but unlike the surface magic of Caravel, Legendary explores the behind-the-scenes magic that runs Caravel. And not only Caravel, but the mother and the sisters’ past.

Since Tella was portrayed as smaller, younger, and more immature for most of Caravel, I was unsure of what a book in her point of view would be like, but she is smart and ingenious and tenacious and really masterminded the whole journey–dare I say she is even more brilliant than Scarlett is?

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The story itself is a lot darker than Caravel is: while the main purpose of Caravel seemed to just be Scarlett finding Donatella, this one has a much deeper motive and so much more is at stake than just a wedding.

With all that being said, this book was a lot more . . . kissey than Caravel. There were quite a few make-out sessions that were rather vividly portrayed, even if they were connected to the plot, and I wasn’t much of a fan of that.

One thing I would definitely recommend is reading it right after rereading Caravel (or definitely at least reading in order!!), because there was so much that connected straight off of it (there is only a couple days between them). The worldbuilding that was in this was very accurate from Caravel, and reading them together makes it make so much more sense!

My Ranking-

7/10

Things liked-

  • Accurate representation of the world previously built
  • A brilliant MC
  • Deeper (and thus, darker) than the first book
  • The returning characters
  • A CLIFFHANGER
  • Well developed characters
  • Delving into the backstory (alsO THAT TWIST REGARDING THE MOTHER)

Things disliked-

  • The super descriptive kissing scenes
  • Moved a little slowly at times
  • Less actual magic than Caravel

Thank you to NetGalley for providing me with a free e-copy of this book in exchange for my honest review; I was not required to write a positive review.

 

Book Review: A Song Unheard by Roseanna M. White

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About the Book-

Willa Forsythe is both a violin prodigy and a top-notch thief, which makes her the perfect choice for a critical task at the outset of World War I–to secure a crucial cypher key from a famous violinist currently in Wales.

Lucas de Wilde has enjoyed the life of fame he’s won–until now, when being recognized nearly gets him killed. Everyone wants the key to his father’s work as a cryptologist. And Lukas feats that his mother and sister, who have vanished in the wake of the German invasion of Belgium, will pay the price. The only distraction he finds from his worry is in meeting the intriguing and talented Willa Forsythe.

But danger presses in from every side, and Willa knows what Lukas doesn’t–that she must betray him and find that key, or her own family could pay the same price his surely has.

My Review-

This book. THIS BOOK. If I’d thought I liked the first book in the series a lot, I LOVE this book! Well, considering the first book was about books, and the second one is about music, I’M SOLD.

I don’t really know why I waited so long to read this book: it was so sweet and fun to read! It follows Willa, the second oldest child in the family, and a lot of the characters from the first book came back make an appearance, which was so fun, and made it so coherent!

Like I said, I loved the first book, but I like this one even more than that one, because of the music. Being a musician myself, that absolute skILL Willa and Lukas have just resonates within me (no pun intended, hahaha). Also I may or may not have read this while I should have been studying for my AP Music Theory exam, and it was highkey convicting me all the way through, but I couldn’t juST PUT IT DOWN LIKE THAT?????

The romance was a bit heavier in this one than in the previous book, but it . . . just felt right. Sometimes romance feels rushed and thrown in for the sake of being thrown in, but this felt natural. *(There are some mentions of possible content warning stuff, but it was super clean overall)*

The side story, Margot (Lukas’ sister), was also so so intriguing to follow as well. Also, there was more wartime content, and if you know me, you know that I LOVE that kind of stuff.

Overall? THIS BOOK IS AMAZING. Read it (but in order). You will not be disappointed.

My Rating-

9/10 (closer to 9.5, since it’s higher than the 9 I gave A Name Unknown)

Things Liked-

  • Music!!!!
  • Wartime stuff
    (those two things right there have won my heart right over)
  • The family!
  • The side story line/cryptology bits were super interesting
  • buT whO iS mR V thO
  • So similar yet so different from the first book
  • The SASS
  • But that ending is perFECT though fight me
  • Also spiritual content

Things Didn’t Like-

  • A little romantic (the first few kisses were unwarrented), and I’m a big downer when it comes to romance

Thanks to Bethany House for providing me with a free physical copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion; I was not required to provide a positive review.

Book Review: How to be a Perfect Christian by the Babylon Bee

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About the Book-

Do you dream of becoming the poster kid for Christian perfection? Then get ready to be baptized in the glorious waters of modern Christian culture!

How to be a Perfect Christian is a step by step guide to grow you from a clueless Christ-follower into a supercharged megabeliever. Discover how to:

  • Join the right church–see how to ditch that group of hopeless losers holding you back and find a church that’s built around you.
  • Vet your pastor–assess his command of sermon acronyms and alliteration–plus his grasp of dynamic gestures.
  • Worship like a pro–find out how to have a worship experience that leaves you with that all-important, addicting emotional high.
  • Do life together–master the art of never letting anyone get close enough to your life to see what a mess it is below the surface

Wait! There’s much more–like acing the church potluck and serving the church without lifting a finger. This book is filled with everything you need to be your best spiritual self, even a free inspirational coloring page!

My Review-

If you take books seriously, then this one is not the one for you! How to be a Perfect Christian is FULL of satire/sarcasm (the one authentic line is probably the acknowledgements).

The Babylon Bee, a satirical Christian site, is well known for poking fun of Christian habits (reminiscent of John Crist), and while I haven’t really followed it, the book really gave me a taste of what they were about!

The entire book is basically a huge Christian inside joke, ranging from Baptist potlucks to worship services to youth group. Granted, it would probably thoroughly confuse anyone who wasn’t Christian, or didn’t have quite a bit of experience in the church.

So long as it is not taken seriously, this is a very humorous book! And even seriously, this book highlights some of the hypocrisy within the church and the little quirks and double standard of within the church.

My Ranking-

3/5

Things Liked-

  • super funny!
  • a big Christian inside joke
  • some important truths presented

Things Disliked-

  • definitely will not appeal to nonChristians, and may confuse them if they were to read it
  • sometimes things were presented a little too hard

Thanks to the publisher, Waterbrook and Multnomah, for providing me with a complimentary print copy of the book in exchange for my honest review; I was not required to write a positive review.

Book Review: The Captain’s Daughter by Jennifer Delamere

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About the Book-

When a series of circumstances beyond her control leaves Rosalyn Bernay alone and penniless in London, she chances upon a job backstage at a theatre putting on the most popular show in the city. A talented musician and singer, she feels immediately at home and soon becomes enthralled with the idea of pursuing a career on the stage. That is, as long as the shadows from her past don’t catch up with her.

After a hand injury forces Nate Moran from his army regiment in India, he returns home to London, a place that holds bitter memories. He agrees to fill in temporarily as a stagehand while his brother recuperates from a broken leg, but Nate is counting down the days until he can rejoin his regiment. His future is decided–until he meets a beautiful woman who has found a new lease on life in the very place Nate yearns to leave behind.

My Review-

I’ve had this book sitting on my shelf for a while now, and I finally buddy read it with my friend Mary (at least, up until I went and finished it before I was supposed to. #oops)

Both of the main characters I really liked: Rosalyn was really sweet (although clueless? like, vERY clueless?), and Nate is just sweet and cute and all thAT. Both of them have a really interesting backstory, which I enjoyed reading.

A lot of this book was set in the theatre, which I really liked as well. Seeing how the theatre tied everything together (also the charACTER DEVELOPMENT on Rosalyn’s part in the theatre thOUGH) was lots of fun, and also the theaTRE CAT. CAN I HAVE HIM???

One thing I was slightly confused about was the fact that the title and the cover really didn’t match what was IN the book? Like yes, Rosalyn is a captain’s daughter, but aside from that, it was literally never mentioned. I don’t know what’s going on.

All that being said, this book really was very sterotypical of Christian fiction: I’m rereading that post as I link it and it’s just like yup, check, check, that too, so if you want a brief synopsis, read that post lol.

All in all, it was a fun book. There is almost no brain power needed to read it, and it isn’t particularly memorable, but it was still a fun read!

My Ranking-

6/10

Things liked-

  • They were from George Mueller’s orphanage, how cool!
  • Theatre things
  • Nate (also Nate and his family) was so precious and lovely and bantery and I loved them

Things disliked-

  • that bit about a brothel. Like yes, I get why it was relevant . . . but there could have been better ways to do it?
  • very sterotypical

Thank you to Bethany House Publishers for sending me a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review; I was not required to write a positive review.

Book Review: The Road Home by Beverly Lewis

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About the Book-

Grieving the death of her Amish parents and the separation from her nine close-knit siblings, Lena Rose Schwartz consoles herself that her new life in Lancaster County won’t be forever. Surely someday soon she will return to her beloved Michigan settlement, including her beau. But even as she holds on to hope for a reunion with those she loves the most, she discovers that Lancaster holds charms of its own. Will she find the courage to open her heart to other possibilities?

My Review-

The more I read of Lewis’ fiction, the more I appreciate her simple writing and her sweet storylines.

After the sudden death of her parents, Lena takes on a parent role and tries to keep her family of 9 kids together, but ultimately fails. While the rest of her siblings are split up between families in their local district, she moves to to Pennsylvania with her father’s cousins to sew for a small income to send home.

The beginning of the story was sO sad! While that means that Lewis did her job really well, it felt a little to sad for my taste at times.

Even while she was working through such a hard time in her life, Lena was still so sweet and kind, and I really appreciated that about her. I loved reading about the new relationships she formed during her time in Pennsylvania, especially those with Rebekah and James. And of course, her reunion with her siblings was the sweetest.

Overall, it was a super sweet story, even though the beginning and middle were so incredibly sad. I really loved Lena as a character, and all of the secondary characters were so much fun to read about too!

My Ranking-

3/5

Things Liked-

  • Lena! She is such a sweet character!
  • The secondary characters
  • A sweet story with a smooth storyline

Things Disliked-

  • Such a sad story, felt a little too sad at times
  • The plot feels a little slow

Thank you to Bethany House fiction for sending me a free print copy of this book in exchange for my honest review; I was not required to write a positive review.

Book Review: If I Live by Terri Blackstock

About the Book-

THE HUNT IS ALMOST OVER.

Casey Cox is still on the run after being indicted for murder. The hunt that began with her bloody footprints escalates, and she’s running out of places to hide. Her face is all over the news, and her disguises are no longer enough. It’s only a matter of time before someone recognizes her.

Dylan Roberts, the investigator who once hunted her, is now her only hope. Terrifying attempts on Dylan’s life could force Casey out of hiding. The clock is ticking on both their lives, but exposing the real killers is more complicated than they knew. Amassing the evidence to convict their enemies draws Dylan and Casey together, but their relationship has consequences. Will one life have to be sacrificed to protect the other?

With If I Live, Terri Blackstock takes us on one more heart-stopping chase in the sensational conclusion to the If I Run series.

My Review:

WOW THIS TRILOGY. This is my exact reaction to my friend at 4 in the morning, after I read book 2 and book 3 in one night.

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First of all, I DEFINITELY recommend you reading them in order (in all trilogies, but I feel like if you didn’t read this one in order, it’s impossible to follow the story). All three books in the trilogy flow together SO WELL, not just physically (the covers match to make a picture!) but also story-wise.

The characters are THE BEST. There are points of view from both protagonists as well as the antagonist, and they all go together to paint the full picture and what goes on in the minds of the characters. (ALSO THE SHIP THAT HAPPENS HERE. ITS PRETTY MUCH THE ONLY SHIP THAT I AGREE WITH IN BOOKS)

All the plot twists in this book are amazing!! Halfway through the book, I thought it was about to end, but then A PLOT TWIST HAPPENED. There were so many but it didn’t feel overdone at all.

ALSO SO MUCH ACTION. There was a lot of legal action (aka, stuff that happens at the police station), but as far as I can tell, it’s very realistic and actually makes sense.

The last thing I liked about this book was all the faith content. The first book (and also a little in the second book) didn’t contain so much faith content (which I get, as part of character development), but there was so much in this one, despite all the action, which I really appreciated.

One thing to keep an eye out for is all the violence in the book. As one might expect with a suspense novel, there is a lot of violence, which I don’t recommend at 2 in the morning, but it might be a little bit much for younger readers or those not comfortable with that violence.

BUT overall? I’M SHOVING THIS TRILOGY AT EVERYONE I SEE. EVERYONE.

My Rating:

8/10

Good things-

  • The characters were well developed (SO SO WELL DEVELOPED. OMGNS)
  • The Point of Views were well balanced between the characters and felt natural
  • A lot of action
  • Seems realistic (in terms of law enforcement and the scenes and stuff…but then, I’m not in that world so I wouldn’t know)
  • THE SHIP. I mean, we all knew it was coming, but like. THE SHIP THOUGH.
  • All the plot twists!!! All the way through the book, I knew what was going to happen (at least, I *hoped* that everything was going to come out okay), but there were so so many plot twists that happened along the way
  • All the faith content and the spiritual talk
  • The coherency between all the books

Bad things-

  • A lot of violence (well portrayed, which means realistic, but there are guns and shooting and death and etc)
  • It feels a little deux ex machina at the end (in regards to the media)

Thank you to NetGalley for a free e-copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review.

Book Review: My Heart Belongs in San Francisco, California || Historical Fiction

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About the Book-

Journey now to San Francisco, California, of 1853 where…
An English socialite finds more treasure than expected on her trip to the American West.

When Abby Effingham becomes stranded in the middle of the California gold rush, her money depletes quickly even while her prospects for marriage increase daily. But Abby is on a mission to find her mother—not romance. Will a ridiculous scandal keep her from traveling on, or will it wake up an aloof innkeeper to the treasure right under his roof?

Samuel Harris runs a moderately priced hotel where Abby and her family’s elderly butler find shelter. He is looking forward to when she—and her parade of suitors—move on, though he concedes to let her work in his restaurant. When the sassy socialite is in trouble, will Samuel come to her rescue or find himself alone?

My Review-

I’m a suCKER for historical fiction (which is probably why I read so much Christian fiction when I don’t necessarily like it all the way), so I was excited to read this series that is solely based around different cities. I also heard a lot of good things about Janice Thompson (looking at you, Lindsey), so I was also excited to read this book written by her. Did this book meet my expectations? Yes, and no.

My Heart Belongs in San Francisco, California reminded me a lot of the plotless historical fiction I used to read in middle school, plus a heavy dose of [mostly clean] romance.

Abby and her butler are travelling to Oregon when they are diverted to San Francisco, which is filled with 49-ers mining for gold. The details that go into describing the city and the circumstances that happened there are accurate (as far as I can tell), and the story was very cute.

Rich English Abby gets to San Francisco having not worked a day in her life, but quickly begins to work in the restaurant alongside the cook, who makes amazing food (that made me hungry). And as expected, falls in love with the main guy. What surprised me, though, was the other fallings-in-love that happened, and all the ploT twists that happened in that department. All the characters I enjoyed reading: they were all distinct in their own way and had their own flair!

I’m not sure what the directed audience of the book is, because the writing was rather simplistic, but had a surprisingly large amount of (albeit, clean) kissing going on, especially at the end. The story generally flowed pretty well, and ended happily (although it DID follow the setting, building, climax, end formula really well so there’s also that).

Overall, it was a cute historical fiction book that I’ll read the rest of the series for, but it wasn’t anything particularly spectacular. The faith content in it was really good, and I enjoyed reading it!

My Rating-

7/10

Things liked-

  • the butler!
  • aw it was so sweet
  • okay but I want some of Cookie’s pie
  • A+ Chinese dude representation. He was amazing and hilarious
  • saSSY comments though
  • yay for happy ending
  • faith content

Things disliked-

  • why so kissey????
  • mentions of saloon girls and their [buSINESS]
  • simplistic writing style

Thank you to NetGalley for providing me with a free e-copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinions. I was not required to write a positive review.