Hello & Book Review: The Maze

Maze, TheHello everyone! At long last, I’m back–literally as well as virtually. After a four month internship in Texas, I’m home in Connecticut and enjoying the start of the marvelous New England fall. Being home should mean a bit more freedom to put time into blogging, and I can’t wait to reconnect with you all.

On the way home from Texas, my family and I hit some National Parks. I picked up The Maze, by Will Hobbs in a Grand Canyon National Park Visitor Center.

Rick’s life is in shambles. Frightened and with no one to turn to, he resorts to the only solution he can land on. Running away. Desperation leads Rick to one snap decision after another until he comes face to face with the owner of a vehicle he “sort of” stole and gets a terse but unexpectedly lenient reaction. With no where else to go, Rick stays with Lon, who turns out to be a scientist working to reintroduce Condors to Canyonlands National Park.

With Canyonlands on our itinerary to visit later on in our trip, reading The Maze was especially fun. I was also pleased to find that I had discovered a book about a foster kid without even trying to. My only bone to pick with the book was a few paragraphs about the “pre-historic” past of the Condors. Other than my difference of opinion with the author concerning the age of the earth (and therefore how long Condors have been around for), The Maze is a fantastic middle age novel. Totally clean and lots of action. It was the perfect entertainment for our long car rides across Arizona and Utah!

While we didn’t visit The Maze area of Canyonlands (which is only accessible with an off-road vehicle), here’s some pictures we took in Canyonlands.

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If you have any questions about CollegePlus, I’ve been answering them for the last four months and still love doing it, so ask away! 😉 I’d also love to know what fun and exciting (or run-of-the-mill) things you all have been up to this summer.

Author Interview and Blog Tour: Jaye L. Knight

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My Ilyon Chronicles adventure began when I purchased Resistance during a Kindle $0.99 sale. It was mostly for my brother because he had previously enjoyed the author’s Makilien Trilogy, written under a different pen name. He loved it and even agreed to review The King’s Scrolls if I got a review copy. His enthusiasm got me curious. Now I’m hooked on the Ilyon Chonicles and Jace is one of my favorite characters.

So, without further ado, here’s my interview with Jaye.

If Jace had to choose an alias, what would it be and why?

When I first read this question, I had no idea what Jace would choose for an alias since I never really thought about it. However, I then saw a character on TV that had the name Wolf. Right away, I was like, yeah, I could see Jace using that alias. After all, he has a pet wolf and loves animals, so it just seems to suit him.

If Jace lived in 2015, what would his profession be?

A horse trainer. Definitely. He loves horses and would be the type of person to work for himself on a ranch.

What is Jace’s favorite verse in the King’s Scrolls and why?

I guess that would depend on what point in Jace’s life he’s at. Early on, he doesn’t really have one. Later on? Well, I could see Ps. 34:4 being one of his favorites: I sought the Lord, and He answered me, And delivered me from all my fears.

That’s all for now. Stay tuned for my review of Half Blood. In the meantime, here’s some more fun info about the books!

About the Book
The gasps and murmuring grew. Though some were hardly more than whispers, clear words reached Jace’s ears—dangerous, monster, animal, soulless. He tried to back away from their accusing eyes, but the collar pulled hard against his throat and held him in place.

For all his years as a slave, Jace has known nothing but the hatred people hold for his mixed blood—one half human, the other half the blood of a race considered monsters. Always, he is the outsider and quickly learns it is better to keep to himself. But, when his volatile ryrik blood leads him to do the unthinkable, he is thrown into a world of violence and bloodshed.

Forced to become a gladiator, Jace finds more and more of his heart dying as his master works to break down his will not to become the monster everyone believes he is. When a stranger interferes with his master’s harsh punishment, Jace’s world is upended yet again. But with it comes the possibility of hope that has long since died. Could the man possibly hold the key to escaping the hopeless darkness that is Jace’s life? Is there such a thing as life beyond the cruelty of slavery?

See where Jace’s story all began . . .

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Haven’t discovered the world of Ilyon yet? Find out more at the official Ilyon Chronicles website!

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About the Author
JayeAuthor2015Jaye L. Knight is an award-winning author, homeschool graduate, and shameless tea addict with a passion for Christian fantasy. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God’s love shines as a light to offer hope. She has been penning stories since the age of eight and resides in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.

You can connect with Jaye on her website, blog, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Etsy, and on her new fiction forum where you can interact with other readers of the series.

Giveaway
Share in the excitement of the release and enter to win a themed giveaway pack! Prizes include an autographed copy of Half-Blood, a blue feather bookmark hand crafted by Jaye, a bronze sword pendant, and a $5 Amazon gift card! (Giveaway is open to US residents only. Cannot be shipped internationally.)

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule
Tuesday, July 14

Wednesday, July 15

Thursday, July 16

Friday, July 17

Saturday, July 18

Sunday, July 19

Monday, July 20

Tuesday, July 21

Wednesday, July 22

Guess a Quote [6.30.15]

Epic of Gilgamesh [GAQ]Hello all! Thought it was time to blow the dust off and start posting again. A lot has happened over the past few weeks and unfortunately that meant the once-a-week post didn’t happen. But, I’m back now with the secret you’ve all been waiting for. That’s right, the answer to the last guess a quote.

Our last quote came from The Epic of Gilgamesh and starshining4ever guessed it correctly.

Our new quote is…

Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.

Sounds like an ambitious morning to me!

Happy Guessing!

A Quick Update

Hey everyone. Sorry I’ve been AWOL! Life is going great, but it’s very busy and my brain has been refusing to function for writing blog posts. Don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten about you all, and I miss you. Despite the lack of posts, I’ve been working on an idea for something I think will be a lot of fun for the community here on this blog. Not giving anything away yet but it has to do with all of you interacting with each other and all of you getting some new books. No, it’s not a book club or anything like that. Feeling suspenseful? Stay tuned!

Book Review: The Maze Runner

Maze Runner, TheThomas wakes up in a moving metal box, with no personal memories. When the box comes to a stop, he finds himself surrounded by a group of teenage boys. The story for each of them is the same. They all arrived in the same way and found themselves stripped of personal memories of their pasts. They live in a mysterious glade surrounded by a cryptic, unsolvable maze. A few of the boys have lived there for two years. Life has fallen into routine. But Thomas’ arrival signals changes to the glade, and not all of the boys are happy. The gladers’ way of life is being challenged, their lives threatened, and the need for a solution growing more desperate every day.

I found this book intriguing, but a little dry at times. However, most of the last few books I’ve read lately have bored me a little, so my ability to focus may be impacted by how busy my schedule has been. Anyway. This book was non-stop action. I really liked Thomas as a main character. He had a lot of moral strength and made a great hero. Speaking of moral strengths, the biggest detriment of this book was a large usage of fake cusses. I appreciated the author’s sensitivity in not using actual bad words, but I could have done without the fake ones too. Other than that, I really didn’t have any complaints.

Guess A Quote [3.30.15]

Black Stallion [Guess a Quote]Hello everyone! I hope your spring has been more spring-ish than ours has been so far. It snowed twice week! The weather people say warmer weather is coming, and I hope they’re right. I like the cold, but it’s time for the snow to quit.

The last quote came from The Black Stallion by Walter Farley. Most of you already knew that! CJ, writefury, R.G. Nairam, Lina, Elisabeth Sullivan, proverbs31teen, Jonathan G., Amanda, and OnionTea all got it right!

With that positive guessing record, I thought we’d stick to the animal theme with another of my favorite horse stories. I’ve done a quote from this one once before, but this time it’s the opening line of the book.

In the northwestern slice of Africa known as Morocco, a horseboy stood, with broom in hand, in the vast courtyard of the royal stables of the Sultan. He was waiting for dusk to fall.

Happy Guessing!

Book Review: Crazy Busy

Crazy BusyCrazy busy. Who can’t relate to those two words? When my friends ask me how I’m doing, I often reply with, “busy.” When they ask how my week has been, I say, “busy!” And I get the same reply from plenty of them.

To be honest, I like being busy. Jobs, activities, and goals that keep me on the go energize me. But there are those moments (days … weeks … months) that crazy busy becomes overwhelming and stressful.

This book and Just Do Something, both written by Kevin DeYoung, received rave reviews from a few of my Goodread’s friends, so when I noticed Crazy Busy available for Kindle for 99 cents, I decided to give it a try.

DeYoung made a lot of good observations and comments about our busy lifestyles. He talked about the importance of being still before our God, the danger of assuming a god-complex by feeling like we need to “do it all because God is depending on us, and the fallacy of feeling wronged when our busy schedules make life “hard.”

Overall, I liked the content but wasn’t overly inspired by this book. On the other hand, I recommended it to a few of my friends because I thought they would enjoy and be encouraged by it. So, if being busy isn’t something that bothers you, this book might read a little dry. If being busy stresses you out, you’ll probably like this book a lot (if you can find time to read it)!

FREE Books

The time has come to get books out of my room. After much agonizing of which to keep and which to dispose of, I’ve made a list. You are welcome to these books free of charge. If you want books, shipping will work out to $3 for the first book and $0.50/book for each additional book in the same mailing (some exceptions may exist for large books). I prefer to receive payment for shipping through PayPal, but a mailed check is also acceptable.

I’ll leave this up for a week or two before carting the rest of the books to Goodwill. So shop while you can and help me get these books out of my room! 🙂

NOTE: I have not read all of these books and am not endorsing them.