Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Giveaway WINNER!

Welcome to Bookworm,

It is that time again to name a winner of the most recent giveaway, The New Recruit by Jill Williamson. And the winner is.........................................................................................................

MEGAN!
 
Congrats! In answer to the question posted "When talking to someone who is "on the fence" on God, what would be the most important thing to do when talking to them about this topic in your opinion?", Megan answered, "I think if I was talking to someone who was on the fence about Christianity, I would emphasize why it even matters what you believe. I would explain how your worldview affects your decisions, interactions with others, and outlook on life, and what a Christian worldview is. I don't know if that would be too dry and logical for most people, but I think it's important to understand worldviews."
 
Very cool and thanks for entering.
 
A new giveaway will be held again as soon as possible so continue to follow this blog by either email, facebook, twitter, or GFC. Make sure to chew on a good book today! :)

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Halfling Series: Guardian

"They Chose to Protect Her
But Forgot to Guard Their Hearts."
Bookworm's Ranking - 4 Worms

Storyline - Nikki is struggling with the loss of her parents, her feelings for Mace and Raven, and the fact her life has turned upside down. But the Throne is now calling for the group to head overseas, creating even more tension and change. As her feelings grow deeper for the boys which puts their eternity in jeopardy and Mace and Raven keep opening their arms to her, Nikki begins to wonder if she is in the right place and tries to make choices for herself. But that starts her down a dangerous road, one she might not be able to come back from and will change everything, Nikki and the Halflings alike, as they know it.

Author - Heather Burch

Publisher - Zondervan

Age Group - 16 and up

Content - *May Contain Spoilers* Nikki, Mace, and Raven tries to deny their feelings and Nikki stays way from Mace and Raven so they wont fall but she can't quite seem to do that. Mace desperately wants to be with her but is willing to do as she wishes even if it breaks his heart. Even though Nikki thought about how the guys looked, this book didn't seem to bring that up their bodies as much as the first. It seemed she was more concerned with heart and feelings stuff but she did ask Mace to take off his shirt once to draw his wings. Nikki becomes filled with hate and revenge and is willing to do what it takes to avenge her parents, no matter what it would mean for her soul.  All the characters are still growing and fighting the darkness and working towards the light.

Personal Opinion - Wow... Give me a minute to find words... Wow. So much happens in book 2 but it all flowed together nicely. Plenty of action, romance, and fighting to discover the truth and light. I was pulled into the story and stuck, reading it every chance I got (good thing book 3 doesn't come out for a little while or school would really suffer). Nikki, Mace, and Raven struggle with their feelings and doing what the Throne wishes. The emotions (anger, love, confusion, etc) that filled some characters was believable so I felt for them and the story. The writing style was nice, original sentences and descriptions which engaged me. There was this one thing about eagles I just loved. Only a couple of things got to me. I didn't even notice until halfway through the book that sometimes description of how people or places look like were lacking. Example: There was this Halfling from book 1 and it wasn't until sometime past the halfway mark that it was reminded that she had a bob hair style. Most of the other Halflings had long hair so that is what I gave her until I read this. ***Spoiler*** Also, Nikki becomes really vengeful at one point and those feelings seemed to lessen too quickly after the climax, but she does consent that the darkness of revenge is still in her. ***End Spoiler*** Still, it was great and I can't wait for book 3 and see how this all comes together.

P.S. A prediction I had from book 1 came true in this book. YAY!

Video -

Buy - Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Publisher

Links - Learn more about the books and author here.
            Join the Halfling's Network
            Book 1, Halflings - Review
            Book 3, Avenger - Coming Soon

Special Notes - This is book 2 in the Halfling Series. There are also two corresponding ebooks that can be read along with these books.

To read, comment, and rate this and other reviews, stop by Bookworm

Monday, October 22, 2012

A Breed Apart: Trinity: Military War Dog

"An Ex-Green Beret and His War Dog
on the Greatest Mission of Their Lives.
And Probably Their Last."
Bookworm's Ranking - 4 Worms
 
Storyline - Heath Daniels only ever wanted to follow in his families footsteps and serve his country. But after a mission gone wrong, his dream to continue to serve is shattered by his inability to work in the field and has left him floundering for what God wants him to do. Left only with the one girl he could rely on, Trinity, his military war dog who could not function after he left the service, Heath receives an invitation to become part of the Breed Apart, a program ran by an old friend to inspire others. Soon they head to Afghanistan to speak at bases and troops. But Heath didn't expect to start falling for a beautiful girl, Darci, who he doesn't realize is an United States operative who is undercover. But when her past comes back to haunt her in the form of a man she played and betrayed in one of her missions, it is going to take Heath and Trinity to find and rescue Darci before she is killed or taken out of country. On the way, Heath and Darci are going to have to face God and learn what he wants for their lives.

Author - Ronie Kendig

Publisher - Barbour Publishing

Age Group - 17 and up

Content - *May Contain Spoilers* Heath works on trying to do what God wants but pushes for what he wants, ultimately coming to see that he needs God to lead and not him to lead God. Darci wonders about God after all the tragedies in her life. She also has regrets in her past but wants to help her country and do the right thing. Trinity is loving, caring, and protects the one she loves. Was totally dog ;). The antagonist is one vile man, beating and torturing happens when he is around, nothing is described but is understood.

Personal Opinion - What can I say? I was very pleased with this book. I loved Trinity. Some books have a synopsises that hints at animal involvement but then they are minimally in them. Not so with this book. Trinity was perfect. She had a real character and was completely realistic in her personality. The author would write a behavior and/or the human in the story would give something for the dog to say and each time I would see it in my mind because it was realistic. Just look at that cover for the cuteness. Trinity was the best... But I should probably say something about the people too. They and their struggles were realistic, with Heath trying to find God's path for him now that he is out of the Military and Darci being undercover and dealing with demons of her own past. They were people you could meet on the street. Each and every character, no matter how big their role in book, had a complex back story and were real people. My only complaints would be that there seemed to be scenes that were not needed and the info in them could have been transferred somewhere else. Trinity's personality, also, wasn't as prevalent towards the end. Lastly, maybe one or two too many plot twists for the story. But, Trinity all came together nicely and this is sure to be a book I will be recommending in the future and tossing peoples' way.

Video -

Buy - Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Publisher,

Links - Learn more about this book and author here.
            Book 2, Talon - Review, Coming Soon
            Book 3, Beowulf - Review, Coming Soon

Special Notes - Book one in the A Breed Apart Series.
To read, comment, and rate this and other reviews, stop by Bookworm

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Mech Mice: Genesis Strike

"Ears Up, Mice!"
Bookworm's Ranking - 4 Worms
 
Storyline - Ziro has dreamed of nothing else but being part of the Elite, mice charged with protecting the shards that give them their intelligence, and move out of his half-brother's shadow. But, his misfit crew isn't exactly up to Elite standards. Yet, a chance comes to prove themselves with a routine mission up in the Liwa region. Shortly after departure, it becomes clear that this mission is anything but routine and will take everything they have to rescue a colony, over come a deadly plot, and come home alive.

Author - The Miller Brothers, based off an idea by Lance Priebe

Publisher - Spearhead Books

Age Group - 12 and up

Content - *May Contain Spoilers* The mice are determined to do the right thing and protect the colonies and each other, even at the cost of themselves. There is some rivalry between two mice and they hate each other but one starts to see things in a new light.

Personal Opinion - A fun, light read. The mice go on a crazy adventure and fight evil and try to do good as well as defend the innocent. There was even something of a conspiracy idea going on in the book which was interesting. There was also a scene that hinted at a higher being and it was done in such a way that it reminded me of something that happened and was said in a Star Wars movie. The characters were nicely developed but I feel they could have been deeper. I am interested in where this story goes from here and will check out the accompanying video game when it comes out.

Buy - Amazon, Spearhead, Authors (autograph option)

Links - Learn more about the books and authors here.

Special Notes - First book in a series. There is also a video game in development which the story is originally based off. The book is created based off an idea by Lance Priebe, the creator of Club Penguin.

To read, comment, and rate this and other reviews, stop by Bookworm.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Author Interview and Giveaway

Hi everyone,

Welcome to Bookworm. Today is the first ever author interview and we are featuring the fabulous Jill Williamson! A quick introduction of Jill, she is the author of five books, the newest of which is The New Recruit, reviewed today as well. She has won two Christy Awards for her Blood of Kings Trilogy. Her books are By Darkness Hid,  To Darkness Fled,  From DarknessWon, and Replication: The Jason Experiment. She is here today to talk a little bit about her new book, The Mission League: The New Recruit.

BW: Hi, Jill. Great to have you here and thanks so much for the interview.

What inspired you to write this book?
 
JW: This is the first book I wrote. I was trying to write a story about teens going out into the world like missionaries, but since teen fiction books about missionaries weren't getting the attention of agents and editors, I tweaked the story and turned them into undercover agents. I was also trying to copy the format of Harry Potter. My goal was to get some teens away from their parents where they could receive some kind of training. At the time, I thought this was sneaky and brilliant, but it created so many problems! I've never written a book that way since. It’s not a good idea to copy what’s already successful—because the world already has that book. And human were created unique for a reason. There’s already one J. K. Rowling. And I need to be Jill Williamson. All that to say, even though I've rewritten The New Recruit from that first, horrible, draft, this book is not my strongest, but it’s still a whole lot of fun.
 
It is fun. I enjoyed it. And I like you as Jill Williamson so I'm glad you decided to be her.
BW: What was your favorite portion to write about/research?

 
JW: I had a lot of fun re-researching Moscow. The first time I did it, back in 2005, it was by asking a missionary questions over email. This time, the internet was a huge help! I was able to use Google maps to get on Arbat street and I even found the website for Cafe MooMoo and was able to copy and past the Cyrillic descriptions into Google Translate. I had a blast. Technology is amazing!
 
Oo, technology. That does sounds like a great way to do research. And Russia did seem believable in the book so your research was well done.
BW: Who is your favorite character (in this book) and why? Are any of them based off real people?
 
JW: Spencer is! I love him, even though he's a punk. He's just a little clueless about what's important in life. But he'll figure things out. And Lukas is another favorite character, but you won't meet him until book two. Lukas is Isabel's little brother. You guys just wait. *grin*

No one in the story is really based on a real person. Some of the things that happened to Spencer are based off my experiences of being a non Christian on a mission trip, though.
Wow, thanks for telling us that. Little brother, oh boy, I wonder how that will go and I want to meet this character now. :)
 
BW: I remember reading somewhere that this was the first book you ever wrote but not the first one to be published. How does it feel to finally see it in print?
 
JW: It's really fun. It's not so much because it was my first book that's exciting, it's my characters. I have known them longer than any of my characters, and I really like them! So I'm thrilled that their stories get to be told in book form. So very thrilled.
BW: Out of all the books you have written, what is your favorite and why?
 
JW: I don't know... It's terribly difficult to choose a favorite. As a mother, I could never choose a favorite child. I love them both. I will say that I was really proud of a book I wrote that was called Seagulls are Plain. It's a middle grade story about an Inupiat girl who leaves her Alaskan bush home to go to school in town. And everyone tries to change her so she fits in. But she doesn't want to change. I love that little book. But it's not speculative, so I don't know if I'll ever get the chance to put it out there. Maybe someday. *shrugs*
 
Sounds like an interesting story. Are you sure you can't pick a favorite child? ;) Just teasing you.
BW: What is the best thing about being a writer? Worst?
 
JW: I get to sit around all day and invent stories! It's a wonderful job. My favorite thing is brainstorming new ideas. I get so excited. The worst? My health. Sitting all day isn't good for the body. And I forget to get up and stretch. I'm trying. But it's hard to remember. But it's also kind of pathetic when I can't open a jar because my hands are sore from typing all day. :-/
I bet you also have a head full of wonderful stories.
 
BW: What can readers look forward too in the future of your writing?
 
JW: There will be three more Mission League books, one for each year Spencer is in high school. And I'm also working on a dystopian trilogy coming out from Zonderkidz in February 2013. The first book is called Captives, and it’s based on Daniel 1 when Jerusalem in conquered by Babylon and the young people are taken into the city. After that, back to fantasy! I've missed writing it. :-)
 
BW: Awesome. I personally can't wait to read the dystopia and the rest of The Mission League. Thanks so much for doing the interview and looking forward to all your future books. :)
 
And now, a giveaway!
Enter below to receive a copy of Jill's new book,
The New Recruit!
Please read the terms and conditions before entering. Also, please read the info on the "leave a comment" entry because it has a question for you to answer. Good luck and enjoy!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Mission League: The New Recruit


"Mission 1: Moscow"
Bookworm's Ranking - 4 Worms
 
Storyline - Spencer Garmond loves basketball more than anything and is willing to do anything to play. So when he is presented with either going to Military school or joining the Mission League, a group of Christians who think they are spies, he picks the churchers. Caring less about God, he puts up with these crazy Christians and goes on the mission trip to Russia. While in Moscow, Spencer meets Pasha, a boy with a strange tattoo and who is involved with a scary cult. As the summer continues and Arianna, a Mission League girl, tries to convert him and surrounded by other devote Christians, Spencer will have to make a choice about the gift God has given him and if he wants God in his life.

Author - Jill Williamson

Publisher - Marcher Lord Press

Age Group - 15 and up

Content - *May Contain Spoilers* Spencer swears but the actual words don't appear in the book but switches to substitute swear words when he can no longer use real ones. He has no interest in God or the Christian thing and thinks/says insults towards the other Mission League members but begins to see them differently and wants to learn about God by the end. There is a cult and it is wondered if demon possession is involved but non of the protagonists like it. A character in her past has had a hard life, there are no details but it is known that she was attacked and has a kid.

Personal Opinion - What first attracted me to this book was 1. Jill Williamson (fantastic author), 2. spies (can rarely go wrong with this kinda plot), and 3. Russia (have a strange fascination and obsession with Russia since the movie Anastasia. Even have a book in Russian yet I can't read a word of it). While reading The New Recruit, I enjoyed the opportunity, like many of my fellow reviews, to see from the point of view of someone who doesn't practice their Christian faith while surrounded by those who do. It gave it gave me, the reader and a practicing Christian, a chance to see my behaviors towards someone who doesn't think, or believe, like I do. Spencer did begin to change before the end of the book and will be digging deeper, I'm sure, in later books into who God is. The action in the story was good and the cult that Spencer and Pasha got mixed up in was realistic. ***SPOILER*** For a literature class, I read an author with similar ideas of looking inside yourself for power and truth as the cult in the book thought (I don't think there are any conection between the two). ***END SPOILER*** The beginning was a little slow to me and I thought I saw a couple of telling situations but that faded as the book went on and I found myself picking the book up when school needed to be done from curiosity as to what would happen next. Looking forward to the next books in this series and all the adventure and character journeys to come.

Video -

 
Buy - Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Publisher,

Links - Visit the Mission League here. Visit Jill Williamson's webpage to learn about her other books and read her reviews. Read an author interview and enter the giveaway.

Special Notes - This is book 1 in the Mission League Series. Read about the others on The Mission League

Disclaimer - In exchange for an honest review, I received this book for free from the publisher/author through Team Novel Teen.


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