Thursday, January 8, 2015

Palace of Darkness by Tracy L. Higley

       I recently received Palace of Darkness by Tracy L. Higley to read and review. The novel is in the genre of historical Christian fiction and was an amazing book. Palace of Darkness takes place in A.D. 106 and revolves around Cassia and her little six year old son Alexander. The story starts with Cassia and Alexander losing an abusive husband/ father. Because of this they leave their home and flee to Petra in order to find her late husband's family. Everything is not as it seems in Petra, however, and they soon find themselves in a troubling situation with the royal family. It is revealed that Alexander has royal blood in his veins, and he is snatched from his mother and taken into the darkness of the palace. Cassia is devastated, but finds help from the followers of the Way, a religious group who follow and live their lives for Jesus.

       This novel also has a bit of romance thrown in, and the biblical undertones make the book that much better. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and cannot wait to read other novels written by Higley. Palace of Darkness is a novel about love and acceptance and trying to find your place in the world. As a Christian, reading this reminded me in little ways about God's love for me and the great plan that He has for my life. Overall, I highly recommend this book, as well as others by Tracy L. Higley. 
       Note: I received this book for free in exchange for my honest review from BookLook. 

Monday, January 5, 2015

Elsker by S.T. Bende

       The young adult fantasy novel Elsker, by S.T. Bende, was an excellent read. It was very similar to many other books I have read lately in that the romance was between a seemingly ordinary girl and a not so ordinary guy, which is okay. But then the author decided to switch things up and throw out the whole vampire, elemental, etc., idea and went with the lesser known Norse mythology. Because of this, I absolutely loved the book, as well as the story line behind it.

       The story began with a young woman named Krista, who was living in Oregon at the time. Her whole life she has suffered from dreams, or visions, and in a spur of the moment decision decided to study abroad at Cardiff University in Wales. While there she meets a handsome and mysterious man called Ull, who at first is very rude and indifferent. Then as time goes on, his attitude towards Krista changes, and they begin to fall in love. Of course, Krista begins to notice that there is something off about Ull, as well as his roommates and she discovers that he is the Norse God of Winter. She also discovers that Ull's world is in danger, and that he ultimately must decide between his love for her and his responsibilities as a Norse God.
       As I mentioned above, this is a very good book. It was so interesting that I read it in only a few hours, and I was sad when it was over. I cannot wait to read the second book and see what happens in the characters' lives. The author created some awesome characters and I thoroughly enjoyed getting to learn about them and their personalities. I also really enjoyed the Norse mythology part, and how it was interwoven so well. The author also made a good decision in introducing it later on in the book after we already knew a bit about the characters and their past. For me the romance was enjoyable and not terribly mushy. The best part was the way it was not just love at first sight. They fell in love slowly, and it was beautiful. I cannot wait for the next book to come out. I highly recommend this novel to all.

       Note: I received this book in exchange for my honest review.