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Honorable Mentions

Posted by on October 31, 2014

Happy Friday y’all!christmas-countdowngiveaway

I am kicking off our Christmas Countdown with two Honorable Mentions of 2014. You see, I can’t call these two books my favorites just yet. They are the start of a series and they leave us with horrible cliff-hanger endings. Like-stick-a-dagger-in-my-heart-endings. Throw-the-book-across-the-room-endings.

That said, I am learning to embrace my inner need for catharsis, according to Aristotle. Oh the feels these books bring on!

I couldn’t pass them by without a mention.

Because these two books, both by debut authors, have an amazing ability to tell a story. Their voices, their style, characters, and plot, all grip your heart and won’t let go until the end of a crazy adventure.

Storm Siren by Mary Weber and A Time to Die by Nadine Brandes

So without further ado:

I raise my chin as the buyers stare. Yes. Look. You don’t want me. Because, eventually, accidentally, I will destroy you.”

Storm Siren Cover (521x800)In a world at war, a slave girl’s lethal curse could become one kingdom’s weapon of salvation. If the curse—and the girl—can be controlled.

As a slave in the war-weary kingdom of Faelen, seventeen-year-old Nym isn’t merely devoid of rights, her Elemental kind are only born male and always killed at birth — meaning, she shouldn’t even exist.

Standing on the auction block beneath smoke-drenched mountains, Nym faces her fifteenth sell. But when her hood is removed and her storm-summoning killing curse revealed, Nym is snatched up by a court advisor and given a choice: be trained as the weapon Faelen needs to win the war, or be killed.

Choosing the former, Nym is unleashed into a world of politics, bizarre parties, and rumors of an evil more sinister than she’s being prepared to fight . . . not to mention the handsome trainer whose dark secrets lie behind a mysterious ability to calm every lightning strike she summons.

But what if she doesn’t want to be the weapon they’ve all been waiting for?

Set in a beautifully eclectic world of suspicion, super abilities, and monsters, Storm Siren is a story of power. And whoever controls that power will win.

add to goodreads

Find it on Amazon

You can read my review here.

How would you live if you knew the day you’d die?

ATimetoDieCovParvin Blackwater has wasted her life. At only seventeen, she has one year left according to the Clock by her bedside.

In a last-ditch effort to make a difference, she tries to rescue Radicals from the crooked justice system. But when the authorities find out about her illegal activity, they cast her through the Wall — her people’s death sentence.

What she finds on the other side about the world, about eternity, and about herself changes Parvin forever and might just save her people. But her Clock is running out.

add to goodreadsFind it on Amazon

You can read my review here.


So, what say you?

Have you read these two yet? How do you feel about major cliffhangers? (I know that books in series NEED cliffhangers of sorts, because they are telling an overarching story and all. But still, my heart?!) Can you name a series that has a good cliffhanger? You know… ones that don’t leave our hearts bleeding all over the pages. Ha!


For a chance to win your choice of my 2014 Favorite Reads Countdown, all you have to do is comment. There will be six posts in all, giving you the chance to enter six times. Of course, I’ll be thinking and scheming of fun things we can do to earn more. At the end of the countdown, all names will be placed in a hat and one will be drawn. Winner will be announced December 19th, and he or she will be able to choose from any books mentioned during the 2014 Favorite Reads Countdown. So have fun and read responsibly! 😛

Have a great weekend!

22 Responses to Honorable Mentions

  1. Lynn Donovan

    Thank you, Jennette. I’ve seen these books floating around the Ethernet but now you’ve piqued my interest!

  2. L. E. Carmichael

    This sounds like a really fun contest! Can’t wait to see more of your picks, and maybe share some of mine. 🙂

  3. Rebekah Clark

    Oooh !!! Storm Siren sounds awesome! I read A Time To Die and loved it, but you are so right!! The cliffhanger killed me!!! Hahaha

    Hmmm I think the sword of truth series had pretty good endings (:

    Is it really halloween tonight? Do you have any plans? I’m home alone to study so I will probably be hiding and locking my doors so no one will knock on it!’ Hahahaha
    I’m the Scrooge of trick er treaters this year!!!!

    • J.L. Mbewe

      Hi Rebekah! Storm Siren had me by that cover. I knew I had to read it. But…gonna have to wait until next year to find out what happens next. I am so glad you enjoyed A Time to Die!

      We will have candy for our neighbors who will drop by.

      Have fun studying!

  4. sparksofember

    I just got a copy of Storm Siren and A Time to Die sounds fascinating. But those cliff-hangers have me dragging my feet! 😉

  5. Emerald Barnes

    These books sound awesome! I’ve seen them around, too, but I haven’t had a chance to read them. I’m not sure about the whole huge cliffhanger. Like, I get having one, but as a reader, I’m always like – um, no. Don’t you dare! lol

    • J.L. Mbewe

      Right! I can understand too. And I think there are certain type of cliffhangers that aren’t as…dagger-in-the-heart, if you know what I mean. Ha!

  6. Jenelle Leanne

    Both of these sound interesting… but as I contemplated your “are there good cliffhangers” question and perused my bookshelves for inspiration, I realized that I am not really a big fan of cliffhangers. I love series, (as a fantasy fan, you can’t really NOT love series) but all of the ones that are my favorites are filled with books that are fairly self-contained stories – with an overarching plot line that doesn’t get wrapped up until the final book (Harry Potter, for example).

    The only “good” cliffhanger I can think of is the one at the end of Tolkien’s “Two Towers” where Sam has just discovered that Frodo is alive, but a prisoner.

    I’m having a hard time coming up with any other examples.

    • J.L. Mbewe

      Agreed! I love how J. K. Rowling handled the series, each book having it’s own wrap up, yet still an overarching plot.

      And your example of Sam finding Frodo is an excellent one. Ending the book on a happy note, yet what happens next??? ha! Thanks for sharing!

  7. zerinablossom

    I’ve been wanting to read both of these books for a while now. As for cliffhangers, I can’t think very well right now. The only one I can thinkgof is the Circle Serirs by Ted Dekker. Thank you for the giveawa y

    • J.L. Mbewe

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing! I have yet to read Dekker’s circle series, but I loved Chosen and enjoyed Showdown. It’s neat how all of his story-worlds are interconnected.

  8. Kessie

    I’m interested to hear what books you really enjoyed, then! Yeah, I can’t do books that end in terrible cliffhangers. The last one ended right in the middle of the climax (the title was Magia or something), an there was no sequel. I was so mad. There’s only one Dresden book that ends on a cliffhanger, but it’s THE WORST.

    • J.L. Mbewe

      Hi Kessie! I am still deciding on next week’s slot. I might have to do a two for one or something for one of the posts. Ack! Thanks for stopping by!

  9. Georgina C

    I just checked Storm Siren out from the library after hearing about it from multiple authors and friends. And I am really wanting to read A Time to Die! It sounds like a fantastic book! But I think I’ll have to get through a few more of the books sitting on my dresser before I can justify another book purchase. 😉

    • J.L. Mbewe

      I hear you Georgina! I have had to turn down awesome sounding books, because I just don’t have the time right now and I have this huge list of books that I have committed to read. I will be taking that list into next year, I think. Ha! Thanks for stopping by!

  10. sarahtps

    Both of these are on my TBR list. They sound pretty cool. And major cliffhangers are . . . I guess it just depends on the cliffhanger. I’m more willing to accept a major cliffhanger in a second or third book than in a first book. And there has to be some sense of closure. But if it’s a well-done cliffhanger, I’m ok with it, sometimes even like it.

    • J.L. Mbewe

      I agree, it really depends on the type of cliffhanger and all. 🙂 Most of the time, they’ll make me want to read the next book. Other times, I had to process the story first. We shall see what happens next in these two. Thanks for stopping by!

  11. The Artist Librarian

    At first, Storm Siren sounded like it was a general market YA –I’m super-excited it’s a Christian YA. It doesn’t seem like anything else out there. Definitely on my ‘to read’ list. A Time to Die sounds a bit dystopian … nice.

    Out of the books I read this year, Catching Fire (book 2 of the Hunger Games trillogy) had the most memorable cliffhanger.

    • J.L. Mbewe

      Hey! Thanks for stopping by! I agree, when I saw that Storm Siren was Christian, I was like, what? I had to check it out. A Time to Die is very dystopian. I look forward to seeing where Nadine Brandes takes the story. I haven’t read much in that genre, it’s not my preferred reading choice, but I do like to branch out a bit. Thanks for stopping by!

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J.L Mbewe - Author