Sheila's Books Read

Sheila's bookshelf: read

What Would the Founding Fathers Think: A Young American's guide to understanding the mess our country is in and how we get out
Isabelle Webb: Legend of the Jewel
Captive Heart
Cobble Cavern
Caller ID
Summer of Secrets
On Little Wings
We Lived in Heaven: Spiritual Accounts of Souls Coming to Earth
Christ's gifts to women
A Woman's power: threads that bind us to god
Scary School
Hope's journey
Targets in Ties
Crater Lake: Battle for Wizard Island
With a Name like Love
Sean Griswold's head

Sheila's favorite books »

2018 Reading Challenge

2018 Reading Challenge

2018 Reading Challenge
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Friday, September 11, 2015

A Tale of Light and Shadow- Book One and Book Two: Secrets of Neverak by Jacob Gowans

Product Details

  • Title: A Tale of Light and Shadow
  • Author: Jacob Gowans
  • Series: Tale of Light and Shadow (Book 1)
  • Genre: YA Fantasy
  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Shadow Mountain Publishing; First Edition edition (May 12, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1609079817
  • FTC, FYI: I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

Book Description: 
Enter Atolas, a world where swords and daggers both extend life and end it, where magic is feared by all but a few, and where feuds and friendships influence kingdoms and courtships. Henry and Isabelle have secretly sworn to marry despite his lowly station as a carpenter, but his devotion to her drives him to commit an unthinkable act that may cost both of them their lives.

At the same time, a secret, dark prophecy has set in motion events that will affect not only them, but the thrones of rulers throughout all of Atolas, threatening to eclipse the world in shadow. But all is not lost while hope remains in the guise of an unlikely hero and the strength of friendship. 

My Review of Book One: A Tale of Light and Shadow
When I first started reading this book I felt confused and it dragged to me. I put it down for a few weeks and read other things. One weekend I picked it up again, started from the beginning,and once I got to chapter three(22 pages into the book) the story took off!! Please don't give up on this book, because there is a very impressive story hiding within the pages of A Tale of Light and Shadow! I was amazed at the plot, the unforgettable characters, and the realism of life portrayed in this YA Fantasy novel. 

The love between two of the main characters, Henry and Isabelle, makes you long for this kind of love in your life. Henry and Isabelle being driven apart is at the heart of the plot of this series. Henry, along with his sister Maggie, his best friend Ruther, and Isabelle's brother, James, head out against all odds to rescue Isabelle who has been "kidnapped" by the evil Emperor of Neverak, who wants Isabelle to become one of his concubines. You meet some grand characters along the way that will astonish you and some will terrify you, as they journey towards saving Isabelle. 

A Tale of Light and Shadow will give you many characters to cheer for and many more to hate. After I started reading this a second time, I finished it in less than 24 hours because I literally could not put it down...until my eyes were red, the letters were blurring, and I had to go to  sleep. 

If you are looking for a book that includes the power of love and friendship, great adventure,humor, mystery and fantasy; you will be glad that you picked up A Tale of Light and Shadow.

Product Details

  • Title: Secrets of Neverak {A Tale of Light and Shadow: Book Two}
  • Author: Jacob Gowans
  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Shadow Mountain Publishing; First Edition edition (July 7, 2015)
  • Genre: YA Fantasy
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1609079787
  • FTC, FYI: I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review. 

Book Description: 
Henry Vestin believed that despite being only a carpenter he could lead Isabelle and their friends to safety. He thought he could defy an emperor and protect Isabelle from harm. He was certain that love and friendship would be enough to survive.

He was wrong.

The Secrets of Neverak follows Henry and his friends after the disastrous battle at the Iron Pass. Horrors await them in strange new lands. Crippled and broken, Henry must rely on his friends more than ever. Allies and foes find them at every turn, but which are friendly and which are deadly? Isabelle, now a slave in Neverak, finds herself surrounded by enemies, uncertain about the fate of her friends, and desperate to escape. The Emperor moves forward with his plans of conquest, spurred on by the Seer's dark prophecy, but he has not forgotten those who defied him.

Return to the world of Atolas, where a blade can extend life or end it, where friendships can topple kingdoms, and where the Path of Light and Shadow is feared by all but a few.

My Review of Secrets of Neverak {Book Two of A Tale of Light and Shadow}:

I was so ready to pick up this sequel the second I finished reading the first book, and that is exactly what I did! This second book is over 500 pages long. I'm a fast reader and I have been reading this book as quickly as possible. I've been reading every spare minute, even during my whole lunch time. I'm also taking advantage of my 2nd grade class "Silent Reading Time". When my kids read, I read. 

Secrets of Neverak has all of the characters in so much distress: mentally, physically, and emotionally. Within the first few chapters many of them have to pass through a horrifying place called, The Iron Forrest, which is haunted. That was a very hard chapter to read because of what they go through during their passage. It just seems like one terrible thing after another keep happening to Henry, James, Maggie, Ruther, and a new friend Thirsty. I just kept thinking...please give them a break! I know it adds excitement and the characters grow a lot as individuals as they go through each trial. Isabelle has her own things to handle as a slave/concubine in Neverak and trying to stay out of the way of jealous women and the Emperor who wants her as his own. Isabelle has the hope that Henry and the others are on their way to rescue her, but she keeps trying to find ways to escape.  

Meanwhile, there are hideous bounty hunters after our heroes, the Emperor of Neverak is planning an invasion of his allies, and none of our main characters can stay out of trouble. I kept reading quickly because I hopefully wanted their journey to end and happily. But, here is the kicker, this series is NOT over yet. It ended and I sat there thinking how dreadful it was that now I had to wait for more. Author Jacob Gowans is a great storyteller, and you don't want to miss out on this YA Fantasy that will be enjoyed by older teens and adults of all ages and imaginations.  

Watch an interview with author Jacob Gowans

Meet Author: Jacob Gowans

Jacob Gowans is a resident of Utah, working as a dentist for kids. He is husband to a beautiful wife, and father to four children. When not working or writing, he enjoys watching sports, reading YA novels or long tomes, running, and chasing his kids around the house.

Psion Beta was his first novel, and he is currently working on two new series: Super Six and the Clone Saga. His favorite music artists are blink-182 (and their spin-offs) and Brandon Flowers. His favorite book is Alexandre Dumas' The Count of Monte Cristo, and thinks the greatest film ever made is Dead Poets Society.

He was raised in Papillion, Nebraska, graduated from college with a Bachelor of Arts in theater studies, and moved to Cleveland shortly thereafter for dental school at Case Western Reserve University.

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