Coffee Book Tag!

Tag Catch-Up Post #1

Cait at Paper Fury tagged me for the Coffee Book Tag! WHICH EXCITES ME SO MUCH. For those of you who don’t know, Cait is a fabulous book blogger and also queen of the world. *nod nod* Go check out her hilarious blog, do! And become a minion/pineapple while you’re at it — you know you want to. Know why? *whispers* Cait gives out cake.

So here’s the funny thing: I don’t really drink coffee. I really enjoy it when I do! But I just… don’t really drink it all that often.

BUT. I am still doing this lovely tag because of many reasons including how cool of an idea comparing books to coffee varieties is.

I am also taking a page out of Cait’s book (ha ha!) and getting a bit into book photography. Mwahaha. It’s super time consuming but sooo fun.

So let’s get to it!

The Coffee Book Tag



The Lord of the Rings – J.R.R. Tolkien

I am a hardcore fan of The Lord of the Rings! …Not so much of black coffee. Ahem. But SOME people seem to think LotR is hard to get into. What even. I can’t even imagine what is wrong with them. It’s fabulous! Okay so maaaayybe it starts a little slow and is enormous. I can understand that. But it’s so so so worth it. Just look at that sweeping epic and the fantasy and the elves and the Rohirrim and the hobbits and Aragorn and Faramir and Eowyn and Eomer and Merry and Legolas and Gandalf and all of the epicness that ensues on their adventures and isn’t it just positively the best ever, preciousss? Yes, we are hardcore fans.



Wintermoon Wish – Sharon Shinn

I had the hardest time with this, because all I could think of was A Christmas Carol. Which I enjoyed, but it doesn’t taste like a peppermint mocha! It’s more like… cinnamon. So instead I’m actually going with a short story (don’t shoot me) which is in the collection “Firebirds Rising” edited by Sharyn November; most of the stories in it were frankly blech. But there were a few I liked, and my favoritest of ALL was “Wintermoon Wish” by Sharon Shinn. I ADORED IT OKAY. It’s some fantasy-world-ish version of a winter holiday like Christmas, called, yes, Wintermoon. And it’s just the most perfect little short story ever. Plus it has Jake. Which is reason enough for fabulousness. So maybe I’m bending the rules a bit, since probably no one’s even HEARD of it, but it gets more popular with ME, so that’s got to count, right?



A Bear Called Paddington – Michael Bond

I just love Paddington. Everyone read this book. It’s perfect and hilarious and adorable and just perfect. Paddington Bear is one of my favorite characters, and he gets into such delightful scrapes and messes, but you know everything will be okay… eventually. I just love how he’s a BEAR in the midst of all the ordinary English people, and their reactions are the best. Plus, I love his hard stare, and his hat, and his love of marmalade and how he’s from Darkest Peru. Paddington’s the best, guys.



Illusionarium – Heather Dixon

Ohhhhh my did it ever. I was so hooked on this thing! It was my first (and only thus far) steampunk novel to read. MAN WAS IT TENSE. I was so caught up in everything and read it in one day and I loved the characters and it was all fascinating and terrifying and Lookwood might be my favorite character so far this year, maybe, just because I’ve never met a character like him!! I have pigeon-holes for character types I like and… he didn’t fit. HE WAS NEW. I love him a lot, that teenage swaggering blond royal-airguardsman with an ego and a temper and an eyepatch and a sort of fierce British temperament like you wouldn’t believe. ❤ The book was partially too scary for me, but it certainly kept me on the edge of my seat.



The Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins

Disclaimer: I haven’t read The Hunger Games yet. And this one belongs to my brother. And it’s the only one of my list today that I HAVEN’T read (though I have seen the films thus far…) But it is positively everywhere, wouldn’t you say?



The Book of Sight – Deborah Dunlevy

The Book of Sight was a random book I downloaded for my Kindle app for free, but actually got around to reading and kind of adored. It’s a contemporary fantasy about a few teens in a little town, who find this book and… yeah, I won’t give it away, but it’s awesome. It’s kind of whimsical and interesting… and in fact reminds me somewhat of my own contemporary fantasy I write, so it was fun and I just… really enjoyed myself reading it! So, shoutout! Go check it out, y’all.



The Ravenmaster’s Secret – Elivra Woodruff

So I should have loved this book! The main character’s name is Forrest, he lives at the Tower of London, it’s set in the 1700’s, has Scottish rebels, the heroine’s a Stewart, there’s schemes and escapes and basically what’s not to like?? Unfortunately, it did it all wrong and the ending was wrong wrong wrong and gaaahh I got so frustrated with this book! *flail* Rawr. It makes me upset. And such a pretty cover, too! Call me disappointed. *glowers at decaf*



The Westmark Trilogy – Lloyd Alexander

This trilogy by Lloyd Alexander, consisting of Westmark, The Kestrel, and The Beggar Queen… I LOVE THEM. They definitely have their share of bitter (*cough*characterdeaths*cough*) which normally should have made me dislike the books, but it didn’t matter because I just LOVED them so much and they left me jittery with book happiness because they were perfect and I loved them, despite the sad. So this is indeed the bitter and sweet and satisfying perfect blend. (Also, 1700’s type of tale, you know…)



Orphan’s Song – Gillian Bronte Adams

Orphan’s Song feels so quietly beautiful and green-tea like to me… The world and the characters and the tale and the allegory and subtle magical notes of song — it’s just gorgeous in a quiet sort of way and I adore it. Also griffin. GRIFFIN. And it feels so GREEN and fantasy ish and I love the characters so much and the writing is just lovely. (And by the way it ended bad and I’m still waiting for the sequel! I needs it, precious!!)



The Iron Ring – Lloyd Alexander

Most kinds of books I read make me dream of far off places, but most of them that I read about (fantasy worlds and the British Isles…) feel actually closer to me in a way than my own place of dwelling. So I’m going to say Lloyd Alexander’s India folklore type story, The Iron Ring, which just feels so rich and foreign and unique and culturally deep and golden but also familiar in that way a dream is, that I just want to go there and see it. Also elephants and tigers and gems and Ashwara.



Kidnapped – Robert Louis Stevenson

Scotland! 1700’s! (Again…) Alan Breck Stewart! Kidnapping! The high seas! Murder! Traveling through the Highlands with redcoats on your tail! Friendship! Love! (Or… love if you tack on the sequel, David Balfour/Catriona, which I consider the second half and therefore inseparable…) What’s not to like? Plus the accents. I love the accents. And it sticks in me mind that Alan is delightfully droll and witty, ye ken? There’s nae gettin’ away frae it, e’en if ye’d want to — which, weel, why would ye, then?? And I love the relationship between Alan and Davy… And it’s just all around swashbuckling awesomeness! Best. Classic. Ever.


So! I’m supposed to tag people… Which means I’m trying to think of people who like coffee and drawing a blank. XD I’m afraid I don’t pay good enough attention to who the coffee fans are and aren’t… my bad.

I Tag:

Kayla @ The Wordsmithy’s Shop

Elfie @ Dream Dancer

Ana @ Butterflies of the Imagination

C.B. @ The World of the Writer

Katie Grace @ A Writer’s Faith

Emma Clifton @ Peppermint and Prose

And y’all only have to do it if you want, and are not required to. 😉

And all of you reading this: If you have a blog and either think it looks fun, or like coffee and books, then you are officially TAGGED.

…And if you don’t like books . . . oh my goodness what are you doing reading my blog you must be lost you poor soul!! O_O You’d best hop on along to… wherever it is online non-bookish people frequent. I wouldn’t know.

READERS, DO YOU LIKE COFFEE? Or any of these books? Favorite flavors…? Educate me about coffee or what books you’d pick for these categories! Tell me all!

Orphan’s Song – Review!

You may remember my cover highlight post for “Orphan’s Song” by Gillian Bronte Adams

Now, having read it… today I’m here to review it!

Orphan's Song--Front Cover 02

Orphan’s Song

by Gillian Bronte Adams

Summary: Who Will Keep the Song Alive?

Every generation has a Songkeeper – one chosen to keep the memory of the Song alive. And in every generation, there are those who seek to destroy the chosen one.

When Birdie’s song draws the attention of a dangerous Khelari soldier, she is kidnapped and thrust into a world of ancient secrets and betrayals. Rescued by her old friend, traveling peddler Amos McElhenny, Birdie flees the clutches of her enemies in pursuit of the truth behind the Song’s power.

Ky is a street–wise thief and a member of the Underground—a group of orphans banded together to survive . . . and to fight the Khelari. Haunted by a tragic raid, Ky joins Birdie and Amos in hopes of a new life beyond the reach of the soldiers. But the enemy is closing in, and when Amos’ shadowed past threatens to undo them all, Birdie is forced to face the destiny that awaits her as the Songkeeper of Leira. Book one of the Songkeeper Chronicles.

My Review for “Orphan’s Song” by Gillian Bronte Adams

5 stars – Magnificent!

I find it hardest to review the books I love the most. There’s a reason I’ve never written a review for The Lord of the Rings, Narnia, Prydain, etc… Something about their greatness and the depth of my love for them makes it virtually impossible for me to even attempt to review certain books. It’s a daunting task. How do I do justice to them? How do I sum up in a review with my own feeble words the vast awesomeness of how much I loved a book?

I’m going to try, though, in this case. Because ORPHAN’S SONG is definitely one of those books.

Before I can get to the useful part of this review, I just have to squeal a little. ALL THE FEEEEEEELS!!! I CAN’T EVEN. When I finished, I was flailing around and babbling incoherently to my sister, trying to explain how much I loved it and how many feels it gave me. (…Much of which is spoiler-ish to even mention.) BUT SO MANY FEELS. AND THE CHARACTERS. I LOVE ALL OF THEM. YES, ALL. BIRDY AND KY AND AMOS AND CADE! CADE CADE CADE. AND A CERTAIN SOMEBODY WHO I CANNOT MENTION BECAUSE IT IS SECRET BUT OH MY GOODNESS I DON’T KNOW IF I EVER HAD SO MANY CONFLICTING FEELS BEFORE. AAAAAAH.

There is my overall opinion. 😉 So now that’s out of the way, here are the reasons WHY I loved ORPHAN’S SONG so much. The characters are a big part of it, but I’m going to get to them in a little while.

The plot itself was exciting and awesome–so much adventure and peril and epicness! I loved how it followed different points of view. When the characters all converged I was almost squealing with excitement! I love that feeling of following different characters and you see them about to come together and then they do, and just YES.

I loved the writing–it flows in a way that is natural but beautifully crafted.

And the SONG. I loved everything about the Song. It was done gorgeously! Eeep. I also like Christian fantasy when it’s done right, and I felt it was done extremely well… It fit in perfectly and was uplifting.

Sometimes fantasy worlds are hard pressed to hit the right balance between being full of fantasy, magic, wonder, strangeness… but also being believable. The world in ORPHAN’S SONG was beautiful and wild and dangerous, and I loved it. It felt somehow natural, and not even put on display like many fantasy worlds; it was all there, but neither over-stressed, nor too much in the background.

The Underground was awesome! Its literal undergroundness and all the youngsters organized like a delightful mix of Peter Pan and Ender’s Game (the good parts of both).

I don’t believe that I’ve EVER read a book with characters who were more realistically HUMAN than in ORPHAN’S SONG. And by human, I don’t mean flawed, or relateable; I mean REAL. I like characters who are straightforwardly good or bad… I’m tired of the ”flaw” argument for ”realistic” characters. The bad characters and the good characters were all noticeably bad or good. But the bad ones… they had some spark of decency or something that made me connect with them; the good ones each had their own problems, and I even had uncertainties about some, being unsure if they would remain good or if they would make the wrong choice… But I loved all the characters (okay, with the exception of the Takhran), and they didn’t seem to me to be crafted figments of an author’s imagination, trying to have the right mix of virtues and flaws in appropriate balance to make them ”real” or ”human”… They WERE real and human. I can’t explain it very well, but I don’t think I’ve hardly ever read a book with characters like this, who seemed that much like real people. I don’t know how Gillian Bronte Adams did it, but I’m in awe.

As for the individual characters…

Birdie was a fabulous heroine! I loved her and just wanted to hug her the whole time. It’s actually rare for me to like a female MC very much, since normally they annoy me or are too wimpy or too much of a tough-girl. Birdie was perfect, though. She had a quiet strength, relateable but brave, that I loved.

Amos… What can one even say about Amos? He’s an absolute awesome delight. I love his stubbornness and loyalty and occasional grumpiness and Scottish accent and just everything about him! EEEEEEE.

Ky was fantastic–I enjoyed him a ton and can’t wait to see more of him! Clever thief-lads are some of my favorite kinds of characters, and he was just great.

AND CADE. The leader of the Underground, he’s so awesome and probably my favorite, if I can even pick one (which is difficult). I absolutely loved Cade! SO MUCH.

THE GRIFFON. WAS. PERFECT. I wish there was more with him!

I also liked Hendryk. Is that weird? I just thought he was done really well as someone who’s just a normal soldier, so we can kind of see his point of view even though he’s with the badguys. I also loved how he kept popping up everywhere.

As for complaints… yes, I did have a couple. I was a little annoyed at how we kept being in a certain character’s point of view, but we still didn’t see all the secrets that character knew, even though we kept getting glimpses of them in thought-processes–but it would suddenly stop right before it got to the important thing. That’s one of my particular annoyances in books, where the character whose head we’re in lets us see everything they’re thinking… EXCEPT for the one particular teeny-tiny-enormous secret that is deliberately being hid from us until ”the right moment”. Just. Meh. I understand why it’s done, but it doesn’t keep me from being quite impatient whenever I find it in a book. It would work fine in a movie, with microscopic flash-backs or whatever, but in a movie we’re not in the character’s HEAD. By the time we learned the secret I’m talking of (which I do admit I was dying to learn), I had mostly guessed it already, so although it was awesome, I was still left a bit with a feeling of being annoyed with the device of how the secret was kept veiled.

One warning: the book sort of ends on a cliff-hanger. Like, a lot. But, unlike in most reviews where I talk of cliff-hangers, I’m not going to shriek incoherently about my need for a-sequel-right-NOW-get-to-it-at-once-author-do-you-hear? Nope. In this case, I want the sequel SO much that . . . I can wait. And I will. As long as it takes. Even if the author forgets about the series and goes on to write something else for a decade or two (which is, I hope, unlikely) before releasing the second book, I will still be waiting.

I will wait patiently for the moment when I can hold book 2 in the Songkeeper Chronicles in my hand, open it up to the first page, and continue this journey with the characters I love, in this intriguing fantasy land, by this author who has captured the heart of a fabulous story on paper and shared it with fortunate readers.

(Technically, I did receive a free e-copy of this book in return for my honest review–many thanks to the author! But I also bought the paperback as soon as it came out because I needed to own it; and I read most of it out of that. All of that being said, I was in no way required to be positive and these are my own personal opinions.)


I’m not putting spoilers in this review… but if you have read the book, feel free to go over to my review on Goodreads, where I have a spoiler-tagged part near the end, so that you can see my incoherent spoiler-filled flailing. 😉


You can find Orphan’s Song on:


Barnes & Noble



And you can find Gillian Bronte Adams here:

Her Blog: Of Battles, Dragons, and Swords of Adamant







Author Bio: Gillian Bronte Adams was born with a pen in her hand, a sword at her side, and a saddle beneath her feet. As a speculative fiction writer from the great state of Texas, she delights in combining epic adventure and fantasy with themes that point to the greatest story of all—or, as she refers to it, writing to the echoes of eternity. During the day, she works as the Equine Director at a Christian youth camp, while at night, she kicks off her boots and spurs and transforms into a novelist.

Fifth of November, NaNo, and a Harp

Remember, Remember the 5th of November.

For many reasons, including, among other things:

  • Gunpowder
  • Treason
  • and
  • Plot.
  • Especially plot.
  • Plot is a good thing to have.
  • Especially during NaNo.
  • (Which is why it is bad that I do not have one…)

And, most importantly, you should remember the 5th of November…


(If you’re doing NaNo, that is.)

I hit 10k last night (yay!) so that’s an update on my own NaNoWriMo doings…

No promises, considering how busy I am, but I HOPE to get a post up about Heartseeker, which is what I’m writing for NaNo, and a review for Orphan’s Song by Gillian Bronte Adams, which I’m enjoying immensely and just need to find time to finish reading and review! So if all goes well, there should hopefully be a couple posts this month.

Best of luck on your stories to those doing NaNo! And to those who are not, best of luck on your own endeavors, and in trying not to pull out your hair and scream every time somebody says “NaNoWriMo”. 😉

Also, just for fun, here’s a video of me playing (attempting to play?) “Broom of the Cowdenknowes” on a harp. (This is extra cool because I am writing about a story with a harp-playing bard in it for NaNo.)

This video was for a promotional contest, and my excuse for the mistakes is that I only pulled the harp out the night before filming it… So I hadn’t had much practice. Hope you enjoy. 🙂

Cover Highlight: Orphan’s Song!

So here is something I’m EXTREMELY excited to share with you – a cover highlight on the upcoming book Orphan’s Song by Gillian Bronte Adams!

I’ve long enjoyed Gillian’s fabulous blog, and a couple years back had the privilege of reading some of the early chapters of “Orphan’s Song” … I was blown away by even that little glimpse. Let me just say I’m positively giddy at the idea of it being published and reading the whole thing!

“Orphan’s Song”, book 1 of The Songkeeper Chronicles, is a YA Christian fantasy novel, and will be published this fall by Enclave Publishing (formerly Marcher Lord Press, which published one of my absolute favorite fantasy trilogies ever, The Blood of Kings Trilogy by Jill Williamson). I’m very excited!

Here is a link to the Kickstarter Campaign for Orphan’s Song and Enclave’s other titles releasing this fall. Be sure to check it out!

And now, just take a look at this GORGEOUS cover!! (I literally squealed aloud when I first saw it. ❤ It’s so pretty and totally captures the feel of the parts I read — it makes me want to read the book so much! I can’t wait till it officially comes out and I can dive into the tale, and put it on my shelf!)

Orphan's Song--Front Cover 02

Orphan’s Song

by Gillian Bronte Adams

Coming Fall 2014

Every generation has a Songkeeper – one chosen to keep the memory of the Song alive. And in every generation, there are those who seek to destroy the chosen one.

When Birdie’s song attracts the attention of a notorious Khelari soldier, she is captured and forced into a centuries old conflict plagued with ancient secrets and betrayals. Rescued by traveling peddler Amos McElhenny, Birdie flees the clutches of her enemies, determined to discover the truth behind the Song’s power.

Ky Huntyr has stolen many a thing in his time as a street-wise thief and senior member of the Underground—a gang of orphans banded together to survive—but he never thought he would be guilty of successfully stealing a priceless treasure from the Khelari and bringing their wrath on his comrades. Haunted by the tragic consequences of his raid, Ky joins Birdie and Amos in hopes of drawing the Khelari after him to keep the Underground safe.

But war soon threatens all of Leira, and the enemy is closing in. When Amos’ shadowed past threatens to undo them all, Birdie is forced to face the destiny that awaits her as the Songkeeper of Leira.


*shivers in delight* Doesn’t it sound fabulous? You’re going to want to keep an eye out for this one, folks! And here is a bit more about the talented Gillian! (Be sure to go follow her blog. It’s one of my very favorites. Her fantasy posts are unequaled. ❤ )

Author Bio: Gillian Bronte Adams was born with a pen in her hand, a sword at her side, and a saddle beneath her feet. As a speculative fiction writer from the great state of Texas, she delights in combining epic adventure and fantasy with themes that point to the greatest story of all—or, as she refers to it, writing to the echoes of eternity. During the day, she works as the Equine Director at a Christian youth camp, while at night, she kicks off her boots and spurs and transforms into a novelist. You can find out more at her blog: or facebook page: