Category: Archaeology

#WaitingOnWednesday | #NonFiction Book Review | “The Patterning Instinct: A Cultural History of Humanity’s Search for Meaning” by Jeremy Lent

Posted Wednesday, 17 May, 2017 by jorielov , , 0 Comments

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Acquired Book By: I am a reviewer for Prometheus Books and their imprints starting in [2016] as I contacted them through their Edelweiss catalogues and Twitter. I appreciated the diversity of titles across genre and literary explorations – especially focusing on Historical Fiction, Mystery, Science Fiction and Scientific Topics in Non-Fiction. I received a complimentary ARC copy of “The Patterning Instinct” direct from the publisher Prometheus Books in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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a word about ‘waiting on wednesday’:

I have decided to start participating in this book blogsphere meme with a few small changes of how it’s regularly blogged about by my fellow book bloggers. I will either be introducing my current reads of upcoming releases as I am in the process of reading them and/or I might be releasing a book review about a forthcoming title by which I had been blessed to read ahead of publication. The main purpose behind the meme is to encourage readers and your fellow book bloggers to become aware of new books being released which caught your eye and which held your interest to read. Sometimes if your still in the process of reading the books, its the titles which encouraged your bookish heart. I look forward to spending the next seasons of the year, talking about the books I have on hand to read, the books I’ve been reading and the books I might not even have a copy to read but which are of wicked sweet interest to become a #nextread of mine.

Thus, this book review is showcasing a title which is set to release in a few short days – it is an incredibly evocative book about a subject everyone can relate too, as it speaks to the human condition and to the approach we all take towards understanding a new layer of our own humanity.  This is my entrance into the meme and a lovely introduction to one of the new books publishing this year by Prometheus Books – of whom, are consistently publishing topics in Non-Fiction which I love to seek out. I encourage you to dig through my tag thread for this publisher and see what else has caught my fancy!

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musings about the foreword & preface:

Similar to Fritjof Capra who wrote the Foreword, I have had an inquisitive mind attached to social history and the innovation invention of ‘ideas’ which may or may not parlay into a realistic impression on the history of humanity as its distinctions come from a myriad array of perspectives and impressions of interpretation. I garnished a keen interest in the Quantum realms when I turnt twenty, wherein I started to gather books about Quantum Physics and the inter-related fields attached to it – books by such men as Dr Brian Greene, Clifford A. Pickover and others who were writing about topics which fascinated me. My personal studies into the Quantum realms are constantly evolving and tuck into different corridors of theoretical thought as what is known right now in our expanding research focuses by today’s scientists and theorists.

In effect, what interested me about reading this particular release by Mr Lent is the curiosity of how our cultural historical imprint has a startling realisation about how we seek out meaning and our cultural awareness towards understanding our purpose whilst we’re alive. I love finding thought-provoking works in Non-Fiction but especially when they are not written in the traditional voice – granting further enjoyment by how the tome of insight your reading is happily set in a conversational tone of entreaty. I also like cultivating a wide net of co-relating interests and of researching topics and subjects which interest me on a multi-diverse layer of insight by different sources, voices and historical perspectives. Hence why I felt Lent’s point of view on this subject would be a wicked interesting read – he takes a multi-layered approach to augmenting his viewpoint.

Cognitive Science and cognitive awareness (as well as the science behind Consciousness) are fascinating topics to explore – as there is a heap of variables and unknowns when it comes to our understanding of how cognition and consciousness are interlinked and dynamically key to how humanity has evolved in it’s capacity to understand the wider world of our dimensional space.

As I recently explored the complexities of the natural world, I am now embarking on extending my focus to the complexities of the culture wherein mankind understands his/her interpretation of the world itself. This is a fundamental breakdown studying how our cognitive perceptional analysis in effect has a stark effect on how we (together) as a world society help to move ourselves forward as a (global) community but also, how we endeavour to remember our socio-pyschological heritage. Imagine excavating the landscape of our mind in order to seek out how we process information as a stepping stone towards properly understanding not only how we interpret what we understand but how what we understand acts as a linchpin towards affecting how events are shaped within the world itself.

Cultural History is critical towards understanding how each generation dealt with the circumstances they faced but moreso, how humanity was thus changed and consistently altering it’s course towards a tomorrow which went through a series of uncertainties and different trajectories before arriving where we are right now. I am also fascinated by the field of ‘Human Ecology’ as this can also be pursued in higher level education where you spend four years ‘discovering oneself and one’s own passions’ seeking to not only understand the ‘self’ but also, to see the world through a different pair of lens.

One thing that is mentioned is how the ‘gender’ of words describing History have altered from the traditional short-hand of ‘man’ or ‘mankind’ to a more inclusive humankind or other such variants. I have the tendency to refer back to the old gender-narrative as unlike some, I never took offence to how the words were used, as technically we are ‘mankind’ inasmuch as we’re ‘humankind’; it’s semantics, truly. Similarly to how I was never entirely sure why women were worried about being called ‘actors’ as I never took that as anything more than describing one’s field of interest: they ‘act and take on different characters’ whilst on stage or screen; in essence their roles are to ‘act’ and give an honest representation of the characters they’re assuming. I never saw how these instances provided bias against gender lines nor how it personally affected us to where Feminism had to take a forward step towards disintegrating the terms. Honestly, there are far more relevant ways we must circumvent gender bias, but to me these two infractions (at best) were benign compared to the wider problems which affect our lives most directly. Ergo, I had to smile how there was care to mention ‘this term was used’ verse having the freedom to use the term itself now.

I, myself, have not entirely understood why most of History is bent towards the Western world rather than a fuller embrace of the cultural history of the world – including by bridging the gap of differences igniting out of East vs West cultural divides. New generations offer different perspectives on all of this (which we can agree on) but why there is a certainty of non-inclusiveness is unknown. I also have observed how indigenous cultures world-wide (as they are not limited to North America) have also taken a backseat in History’s scope of narrative. There is an enriched well of stories yet to be told as the annals of human history are still missing key chapters which would provide new insights into how progress was not always kind to those who came before our current generation. Each generation has their struggles, yes, but why is there a continued erasure of certain truths behind cultural divides is one of our worst legacies.

I do agree with the postmodernist behaviour mentioned – of how we try to attach ourselves to different viewpoints, intellectual insightfulness and a merging of religious thought with those cultures we come across who provide us with a unique and fresh perspective. I am not entirely sure this was short-sided of us (on a whole) to remain on the superficial layer of what this insight would provide nor of being unable to dig further into how these opinions and views were rooted in a specific historical context. I tend to yield to giving the benefit of the doubt, on how as we were granted a heightened curiosity to understand things which are not readily understood – perhaps our approach to draw our differences together, we took a few missteps to fully appreciate the magnitude of how those other beliefs fit within the context of their cultural heritage. Most of us, I think do err on caution and do try to bridge together resources of knowledge which keep us in-tune with the complexities of global history. Knowledge (like life) has a steep learning curve and we never quite expire from learning something we previously hadn’t fully had the data to conceptionalise in a manner in which it deserved.

Part of my own theory on why we have such a divided world is because the truth of the matter is each country and continent had it’s own form of growth but part of human nature is to judge, measure, weigh and assert superiority. In this context, it’s hard to rationalise why there was such a race to ‘outwit and outsolve’ history’s key problems in industrial and technological advances as I previously have already read; some countries arose to the challenge ahead of others but there was a blackout in communication and of informational exchange. If we would stop ‘vying for being the first’ at everything, and recognise we’re globally interconnected to each other, we’d make better progress towards accepting our global heritage as we would stop compartmentalising ourselves.

When pondering one of the key conduits of thought within The Patterning Instinct – a term reappears quite frequently: historical reductionism which leapt out at me because it’s another way of stipulating: superficist historical perspectives which was my main bone of contention whilst in school and why I was perpetually bored with pre-determinded syllabuses. There is another interesting tidbit hidden within the context which is niche construction which by definition could be cross-applied to my own life, as I was in search of my ‘personal niche’ in life by which I could contribute something artistically created back to society (herein I refer to my quest to unearth my talent was to be a story-telller). I love how this term encapsulates how even in nature, there is evidential support to merit this inclusion towards understanding the nature of self-learning and self-adaptive qualities.

On the cognitive development of humans being influenced and patterned by linguistic heritage did not surprise me – as so much of how we internalise our world is fuelled by how we were understanding the world by those around us whilst we were too young to self-articulate what we were experiencing. It is also true to say, if we have a particular pattern of speech or a learning impediment (such as dyslexia; in my case) you can back-trace how you developed your own style of speech patterns to the people who were interacting with you the most whilst you were still developing your awareness of the information you were processing as a young child. Cognitive awareness starts quite young indeed but how to properly process what we are seeing, hearing and sensing takes a bit longer. If we rely on those around us to help guide us towards understanding how to break-down what we’re internalising and thereby, chart a course towards our own process of cognition, it stands to reason even on a fundamental level, through auditory means (of understanding), we are first mimicking how we hear words and the comprehension of what is around us. We follow this process by developing our own mind and our own interpretation of the world based on what we learn and how we gravitate towards renewing our sense of wonder through collecting knowledge and experiences.

There is an incredible insightful interpretation of what led to the demise of the rain forest which has always held such a tight ache in my own spirit for how destructively callous mankind can be when it comes to destroying what it does not readily understand. On a personal note, I once saw the brutal butchery of a weeping willow tree when living in a place where the outside caretakers were not determined by my family but by the community as a whole. They cut back the tree to such a state of destruction, the tree wept for the last time. It was reduced to such a horrid state of indifference, not even the birds returned; as many of them had nested there in the Spring. I remember vividly lashing out at the man with the chainsaw for his absolute stupidity for not recognising the consequences of his actions. I was physically sick and anguished by how indifferent he was to the fate of a ‘tree’. This new passage about how forests are living ecosystems where trees act as the guardians who protect the futures of the forest itself was not lost on me; if anything it re-instilled how limited mankind has progressed to understand the fuller picture of how nature and man are connected in ways which once severed cannot become re-aligned. Mind you, getting neighbours to respect how trees are our source of oxygen was another wrinkle of angst as they merely saw trees as the bearers of ‘leaves’ which they simply could not handle walking over in the Autumn.

Somewhere along the way, mankind has become blinded by his zest for colonisation and globalisation to where the natural world is no longer a reverent component of our lives but something which needs to be controlled and/or destroyed. How we turnt away from our heritage of connection with nature is not understood (at least not by me) but it is a pattern of change on it’s own merit. And, what cognitive pattern shifted our perspective from being caretakers to destroyers is even more interesting to contemplate.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com#WaitingOnWednesday | #NonFiction Book Review | “The Patterning Instinct: A Cultural History of Humanity’s Search for Meaning” by Jeremy LentThe Patterning Instinct
Subtitle: A Cultural History of Humanity's Search for Meaning
by Jeremy Lent
Source: Direct from Publisher

This fresh perspective on crucial questions of history identifies the root metaphors that cultures have used to construct meaning in their world. It offers a glimpse into the minds of a vast range of different peoples: early hunter-gatherers and farmers, ancient Egyptians, traditional Chinese sages, the founders of Christianity, trail-blazers of the Scientific Revolution, and those who constructed our modern consumer society.

Taking the reader on an archaeological exploration of the mind, the author, an entrepreneur and sustainability leader, uses recent findings in cognitive science and systems theory to reveal the hidden layers of values that form today’s cultural norms.

Uprooting the tired clichés of the science-religion debate, he shows how medieval Christian rationalism acted as an incubator for scientific thought, which in turn shaped our modern vision of the conquest of nature. The author probes our current crisis of unsustainability and argues that it is not an inevitable result of human nature, but is culturally driven: a product of particular mental patterns that could conceivably be reshaped.

By shining a light on our possible futures, the book foresees a coming struggle between two contrasting views of humanity: one driving to a technological endgame of artificially enhanced humans, the other enabling a sustainable future arising from our intrinsic connectedness with each other and the natural world. This struggle, it concludes, is one in which each of us will play a role through the meaning we choose to forge from the lives we lead.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

Find on Book Browse

ISBN: 9781633882935

Genres: Anthropology | Archaeology, Biological Diversity, Evolution, Life Science, Non-Fiction, Science, Social Science


Published by Prometheus Books

on 23rd May, 2017

Format: Paperback ARC

Pages: 569

Published By: Prometheus Books (@prometheusbks)

Available Formats: Trade Paperback & Ebook

Converse via: #NonFiction, #CulturalHistory, #History + #ScienceBooks and #ThePatterningInstinct

About Jeremy Lent

Jeremy Lent

Jeremy R. Lent is a writer and the founder and president of the nonprofit Liology Institute, dedicated to fostering a worldview that could enable humanity to thrive sustainably on the earth. The Liology Institute (www.liology.org), which integrates systems science with ancient wisdom traditions, holds regular workshops and other events in the San Francisco Bay Area. Lent is the author of the novel Requiem of the Human Soul. Formerly, he was the founder, CEO, and chairman of a publicly traded Internet company. Lent holds a BA in English Literature from Cambridge University and an MBA from the University of Chicago.

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • #FuellYourSciFi
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Posted Wednesday, 17 May, 2017 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, Archaeology, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book for University Study, Bookish Discussions, Bookish Memes, History, Indie Author, Nature & Wildlife, Non-Fiction, Prometheus Books, Science, Social Change, Social Services, Sociological Behavior, Sociology, The Natural World, Waiting on Wednesday

Blog Book Tour | “Quicksand: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery” by Gigi Pandian Readers who appreciate Lara Croft or Tia Carrere’s ‘Relic Hunter’ will happily find a new Professor Adventurer who finds extreme joy in digging up the past!

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2015 by jorielov , , , , , 1 Comment

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By:

I was selected to be a tour stop on the “Quicksand: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery ” virtual book tour through France Book Tours. I received a complimentary spiral-bound* ARC copy of the book direct from the author Gigi Pandian, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

*This is my first spiral-bound ARC copy of a novel to receive, as what is unique about it is the layout of the pages, as there are ‘two pages per sheet’ of the ARC itself! The flow of the narrative goes from right to left, as the first ‘page’ is set to the right and then the first full page shifts back to ‘left to right’, then if you turn to the third page, it’s in the right order but all the pages are double-sided. It goes with saying I had to adjust to reading it in this style, as at first I thought it was all in reverse! It is the first time I can honestly say I understand other dyslexics and how reading can cause you unexpected problems, as I never had the issue with left to right or right to left, but as I’m finding as an adult dyslexic, everything changes once you leave your childhood years!

A notation on why I love my local library: I borrowed the first two novels in the series via ILL (inter-library loan) in order to understand the flow and pace of the character’s journey. The unique part is that both paperback copies of “Artifact” and “Pirate Vishnu” arrived from public libraries in the PNW: Pacific Northwest! This is an example of how blessed I am for being able to use inter-library loan via my local library and how awesome WorldCat is to connect us to books which are outside the collections of our local library systems! This is one key reason I link books I am highlighting on my blog to WorldCat because depending on where you live, the book will let you know if it’s available to request; either locally or through ILL’ing!

“Artifact” arrived via the North Central Regional Library in Wenatchee, Washington whereas “Pirate Vishnu” arrived via the Timberland Regional Library in Turnwater, Washington. Both copies were paperbacks and only lightly read which made the experience for me as a book blogger discovering a ‘new to me author’ truly enjoyable! I have added the entire series and the novella to my “Book Wishes” List on Riffle! I hadn’t realised there was a ‘prequel’ to the series hidden inside of an anthology until after I received the books via inter-library loan; much to my delight the anthology is also available to borrow in the future!

This is why I stress that local libraries are a wicked resource for readers everywhere to use, not just for those of us who blog our reading lives but for anyone who is curious about an author, a book, or a non-fiction topic to research: a local library and the resources they can provide you with are unparallelled! When I am being writerly I can happily attest I love conducting my research via my local library as well, because you can quantitatively gather materials you cannot have on hand otherwise.

Why adventure and archeological artifacts interest me :

A very little known fact about myself is the original dream I had as a youngster, wells, wait, if I were to be truly honest, the second dream I had as a ‘field of choice’ was to become a Historical Archaeologist. Mind you, I was greatly attached to the aspects of being a Paleontologist prior to settling on archaeology, but my interests wavered a bit to settle on ‘historical’ as I toyed with the idea of ‘Nautical’ (although that would need a PADI certification to achieve!) before uncovering Forensic Anthropology; for the 80s this was a radical idea of thought as the 90s were only just on the fringe of beginning. Not quite your typical rising sixth grader who had a penchant for parapsychology ontop of digs, bones, and the past hidden below the ground!

I was always quite intrigued and motivated by the ‘explorers’ in fiction, as my favourite childhood adventurer series was penned by Frank Perretti and called the Cooper Kids Adventure Series. Ironically or not, it’s not a trilogy or a quad, and has more books in the series now than when I first read them as I have the original boxed set with the original illustrations! Smiles. It was a natural curiosity to become attached to Indiana Jones (movies 1, 3, and 4 respectively; the Young Indiana Jones Chronicles serial most definitely) and Lara Croft as brought to life by Angelina Jolie in the motion pictures. I truly loved Tia Carrere’s serial as well (Relic Hunter) but only had the pleasure of seeing it sporadically. Definitely a serial to see if I can borrow on dvd whilst I’m not gathering a ‘new to me’ BBC serial! (Hallo, Foyle’s War and Last Tango in Halifax!)

To me, living vicariously through adventure novels (oh, I had forgotten I read the novels for Indiana Jones too! oh! I had forgotten to mention the Graphic Novels, too!) is a wicked sweet joy of mine! I do not read adventure novels often enough, and it’s definitely an under-read area of literature I’d like to explore in the future! I even have my eyes on Classical Lit offerings such as the Joseph Conrad novels, and of course, definitely reading about Aubrey and Maturin throughout Master and Commander! I love a wide range of adventures, from deep sea diving to archaeological digs to the high sea epics of the historical past to a contemporary jewel heist or an espionage thriller. Honestly, there is so much randomness to the adventure genre that you just never know what you will uncover next! Isn’t that the beauty of it?! For me, it definitely is! Hence why I am grateful to have found Gigi Pandian and Henery Press!

Blog Book Tour | “Quicksand: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery” by Gigi Pandian Readers who appreciate Lara Croft or Tia Carrere’s ‘Relic Hunter’ will happily find a new Professor Adventurer who finds extreme joy in digging up the past!Quicksand: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery
by Gigi Pandian
Illustrator/Cover Designer: Fayette Terlouw
Source: Author via France Book Tours

A thousand-year-old secret room. A sultan’s stolen treasure. A missing French priest. And an invitation to Paris to rekindle an old flame…

Historian Jaya Jones finds herself on the wrong side of the law during an art heist at the Louvre. To redeem herself, she follows clues from an illuminated manuscript that lead from the cobblestone streets of Paris to the quicksand-surrounded fortress of Mont Saint-Michel. With the help of enigmatic Lane Peters and a 90-year-old stage magician, Jaya delves into France’s colonial past in India to clear her name and catch a killer.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

Series: ,


Genres: Action & Adventure Fiction, Archaeological | Anthropological Historical Perspectives, Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Contemporary Romance, Cosy Mystery


Published by Henery Press

on 10th March, 2015

Pages: 280

Published By: Henery Press (@HeneryPress), part of their Mystery Collection
Available Formats: Hardback, Paperback and Ebook

{ Book One: Artifact: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery }

Add to Riffle + Public Library

{ Book Two: Pirate Vishnu: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery }

Add to Riffle + Public Library

{ Prequel Novella of the series: Fool’s Gold part of ‘Other People’s Baggage’ Anthology }

Uniquely it is mentioned all three novellas in the set are inter-connected!

Add to Riffle + Public Library

Converse on Twitter via: #JayaJones

About Gigi Pandian

USA Today bestselling author Gigi Pandian is the child of cultural anthropologists from New Mexico and the southern tip of India. After being dragged around the world during her childhood, she tried to escape her fate when she left a PhD program for art school. But adventurous academics wouldn’t stay out of her head.

Thus was born the Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery Series (Artifact, Pirate Vishnu, and
Quicksand
). Gigi’s debut mystery novel was awarded a Malice Domestic Grant and named a “Best of 2012” Debut Novel by Suspense Magazine.
Her short fiction has been short-listed for Agatha and Macavity awards, and she also writes the new Accidental Alchemist mystery series.

She takes photos of gargoyles wherever she goes, and posts them on her Gargoyle Girl blog.

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Read an Excerpt of the Novel:

Quicksand by Henery Press

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Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2015 by jorielov in 21st Century, Action & Adventure Fiction, Amateur Detective, ARC | Galley Copy, Archaeology, Art, Art History, Artwork Provenance, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book | Novel Excerpt, Book Cover | Notation on Design, Book Cover | Original Illustration & Design, Bookish Discussions, Bookmark slipped inside a Review Book, Compassion & Acceptance of Differences, Contemporary Romance, Cosy Mystery, Crime Fiction, Equality In Literature, France, France Book Tours, French Literature, History, Indie Author, Lady Detective Fiction, Library Catalogues & Databases, Library Find, Library Love, Local Libraries | Research Libraries, Modern Day, Multi-cultural Characters and/or Honest Representations of Ethnicity, Postal Mail | Letters & Correspondence, Scribd, Travel, Treasure Hunt

+Blog Book Tour+ Uncovering Cobbogoth by Hannah L. Clark #Fantasy taken to the next level!

Posted Thursday, 29 May, 2014 by jorielov , , , , , 0 Comments

Parajunkee Designs

Uncovering Cobbogoth by Hannah L. Clark

Uncovering Cobbogoth Blog Tour by Cedar Fort Publishing & Media

Published By: Sweetwater Books ( ),
an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc (@CedarFort)
13 May, 2014
Official Author WebsitesSite | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube

Available Formats: Paperback
Page Count: 320

Converse via: #UncoveringCobbogoth

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Acquired Book By: The story behind how I was able to read “Uncovering Cobbogoth” is quite a unique story all the way around! Originally, I was selected to be on the blog tour with TLC Book Tours for this novel, but at the last minute I received a cancellation notice. Normally I do not chase after a novel when a blog tour falls through (although I have a few times this Spring 2014!) as I respect that circumstances can change or become altered from what was originally scheduled. However, I felt so strongly in this particular selection I simply had to contact the author on behalf of her personal website & I might have tweeted her as well – I cannot remember the order of events, but I did contact her personally letting her know how much I still believed in the story & on my disappointment of the blog tour cancellation.

Around this point in time I was in contact with one of the publicists I work with on blog tours, Ms. Amber Stokes (her badge is in my sidebar – Editing Through the Seasons) who had lamented via the twitterverse she was enjoying this book but was on tour with it through Cedar Fort! I had not at that point in time heard of or known of Cedar Fort Publishing! Much less realising that another Indie Publisher was organising blog tours for book bloggers! Within a short time frame I had contacted Ms. Clark AND I had contacted Cedar Fort’s blog tour cordinators at no less than four times, as I was trying to read their site & sort out the details for “Uncovering Cobbogoth”, the qualifications as a book blogger seeking a print copy as much as realising they offer more than one blog tour at once! I believe within a 24 hour expanse I had all my bases covered! Including thanking Ms. Stokes profusely for telling me about Cedar Fort initially!

The long short of this story ahead of the review is simply that I was accepted as a late stop on the blog tour, as I had a very short window of being able to receive the book and review it on my blog! I picked one of the last stops as I knew I would need every inch of that time to soak into the world of ‘Cobbogoth’! And, part of me knew this was a special book to request as well! Therefore, I was offered to receive a complimentary copy of “Uncovering Cobbogoth” direct from the publisher Sweetwater Books (imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein. This also marks my first blog tour as Hostess for Cedar Fort blog tours as I scheduled a few more throughout Summer!

Inspired to Read:

The very first moment I saw this book title being offered for a blog tour stop via TLC Book Tours, I simply knew after I clicked over to the author’s website that I had stumbled across a piece of magical bliss! When I pulled up the book trailer I even lamented to my tour director, “The book trailer nailed it for me!” It was the combination of the magical world and setting, the lushness of the characters & back-story, and the way in which the mythological arc is carried over and through the book trailer (attached below my book review!) which set my mind afire with the wondrous possibilities that were going to lie in wait for me! The fact that it involved ‘Icelandic’ origins was enough to whet my whistle of electrified joy! The beauty of Iceland is not only its appeal for mythological history nor being on the center-front edge of green technologic advances in science, but it sits on the fringe of adventure, discovery, and of a place rarely opted for a holiday!

I have dreamt of  wandering around the shores and inlets of Iceland for many a moon, and part of me always gets as giddy as a cat when Iceland is featured in documentaries! (if you follow the electric car ones, you know what I am referencing!) There is a pure allure and dynamic for story-tellers to feel captivated and wholly enthused to go to Iceland. From the bottom of my writer’s heart I long to talk to Icelanders about their own organic tradition of story-telling and their enchantment with the world’s story-tellers as Iceland is one of the singularly largest self-contained countries for literary explorers! The country boasts more readers per capita than most other locales on earth! To me if you combine everything we know superficially about Iceland and the bits and bobbles I just shared, wouldn’t you be stoked with a breath of anticipation to read Uncovering Cobbogoth!?

If my enthused opening to my review below is of any countenance, please take a moment to celebrate the wonderfully joyful revelation of a writer on the verge of seeing her book launch to the four winds, land in the loving hands of readers, and electrify her heart with an overwhelming sense of harmony knowing that her story has not only captured our attention but it is a story which has gone out into the world to find new readers & new appreciators of the work she etched into ‘Uncovering Cobbogoth’!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Uncovering Cobbogoth Release Day!! And a HUGE heartfelt THANK YOU!

via Hannah L. Clark

The lovely video which was embedded at the time of this post has been removed.

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Hannah L. ClarkBook Synopsis: 

Follow Norah Lukens in her quest to uncover the truth about the fabled lost city of Cobbogoth! After her archaeologist uncle’s murder, Norah is asked to translate his old research journal for evidence and discovers that his murder was a cover-up for something far more sinister. Readers of all ages will be captivated by this tale of mythical beings, elemental magic, and the secrets of a lost city.

Author Biography:

Hannah L. Clark lives with her kinzura and their kynd in Utah. She has always known she would be a storyteller. In 2006 she graduated from Utah Valley University with a bachelor’s degree in English, and immediately began writing Cobbogoth. Hannah loves running, mythology, laughing, soulful bluegrass music, and growing things. Like Norah, she is slightly inclined to believe that trees have souls. To learn more about Hannah and the Cobbogoth series, visit cobbogoth.com.

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The back-story set in the Cobbogoth series:

I am always intrigued by how each writer of Fantasy elects to give us little nibblements of the back-story as the current one takes shape before our eyes! The inertia of my fingers grasping at the pages awaiting to read what was written next is a good barometer of knowing how well in tune Clark is with gaining her audience’s attention front and center from Chapter 1! There was an emotional turning point where you knew that the lead character was carrying far more than the world on her young shoulders, as I appreciated the symbolism of the Cherry Tree and of the theory of how trees can speak in low whispers if we were only able to believe in their presence in our lives. This is mentioned in the Author Biography, about a kinship between herself and her lead character’s beliefs in the living souls of trees; a theory and belief that I, a reader of Cobbogoth whole-heartedly believe true!

To bridge the extension of this belief and to paint a catalyst of memory for a young orphan’s heart for her unknown Mum was a touching sentiment! I also appreciated seeing the etchings of how friends can be betwixt mere ‘friends’ and ‘something more’ or even ‘as close as family’ as their relationships can alter and change over time apart. There are a lot of hidden insights into how our world can be perceived as we’re living through our ordinary days as much as how we grapple to understand the depths of our connections to the people we care about the most. Clark allows her characters to ‘breathe freely’, to excise their vulnerability, and shed the layers of their innermost thoughts as though carting away a discarded snakeskin. Emotions are always the elements of humanity held the closest to our person and the hardest to ease away from when facing conflict and tragedy.

Her brushstrokes include foreboding flashbacks and a combination of startling truths played out in the form of premonitions and second-sight visions, which besotted Norah to a wrecking level of heightened awareness. Her mind was prepared to handle the onslaught of knowledge she would need to process, but her emotional heart was written in the true scope of her seventeen years. For this, an extra layer of realism was woven into the context of the story. The flashbacks and moments of her enlightenment felt a close kin to ‘living ghosts’ as they faded in and out of recognition as though they were spatially translucent and remembered against will. Within these moments the fuller history of Cobbogoth becomes a living vessel beyond proportion.

My Review of Uncovering Cobbogoth:

Uncovering Cobbogoth by Hannah L. ClarkA mystery is underfoot at the start of Uncovering Cobbogoth, as Norah Lukens has short-term memory loss whilst in transit towards Boston on a commuter bus. The reflection of a stranger’s kindness was a nice touch on behalf of the writer, as it stirred my own memories whilst travelling in my mid to late teens when I too, received welcoming kindnesses by fellow travellers when I needed a bit of aide myself! Including during a cross-country red-eye flight where they did not tell us to expect to pay for in-flight headphones, snacks, and morning necessities in the washroom! A grandmother wrapped me inside a wicked film, heaps of snacks, and just enough peppermint candies and soap to make me feel properly refreshed before the plane landed! Such kindnesses always touch our heart as they arrive in our lives at moments we are not expecting help. In this way, I was swept into the shoes of Norah as soon as she appeared on the page! A nibbling awareness that this is a novel where everything is not yet as it seems would be beneficial to tuck away certain passages for future references!

Norah’s homecoming is forestalled by horrific tragedy jettisoning her onto a course of fated bravery, as she is meant to help the detectives solve the crime she walks-in on whilst expecting a transition from being away from home. Not yet a breath of her eighteenth year is broached before she starts to watch the embers of her life unravell and re-construct a new path for her to tread. The shattering realisation that one-half of her life is now ripped away and gone, whilst the other half remains elusive and unnervingly real at the same time gives her mind an off-balance reality.

As Norah’s emotional state wavers between solid ground and the shattering awareness of how intricate her life thus far has schooled her in what she would need to know to survive the moment ‘after’ her Uncle’s death; nearly puts her past her ability to function. Little pieces of a shifting puzzle float through her internal vortex, as her mind acts more like an automatic processor of information: where it has stored, analysed, and executed a thousand different pathways of knowledge only to be propelled into instantaneous flights of auto-retention! Gifted with a photographic memory and the devouring of ancient languages as though they were in high fashion in today’s age, she is guided by her years as a home-schooled pupil of her Uncle Jack’s. His presence might be taken from her, but his voice is ever present and his wisdom ever apparent.

I appreciated the ‘other world and other kind’ technology introduced into the context of this installment of the series, as I was most fascinated by the use of crystals and stones of having properties outside of their elemental physic natures! Rocks, fossils, gemstones, and all matters of geologic science were another fascination of mine growing up, and to see the protection bracelet (a name I dubbed it as I read!) brought into the story was quite bang-on brilliant! I loved the idea that there is more to the nature of stones than we first give them credit for having! Although anyone who has attended a gem and stone festival, (or a smaller version inside of an Arts & Crafts Fair) will denote that crystals of any size, but generally of medium or larger varieties have a ‘telling presence’, as they give-off a piece of themselves as they sit quietly on a flat surface. Knowing this, I was wholly fascinated by the presence of stones and crystals through the adventure I lived whilst inhabiting the soles of Norah’s shoes!

From the moment Norah first picked up her Uncle’s journals and started to decipher their hidden language contrasted against the flashback memories of a part of Icelandic lore I was not familiar of previously, this particular story has you mesmorised from the first page your turn against your heart’s desire to see it unfold faster! I felt my heart leap wanting to curl inside the story and wander around free of needing to read the words off the page! I felt as though I had finally found my ‘next adventure’ past the Cooper Kids, which made me feel as though I had stepped through the portal and taken up an active role in the story itself! I always wanted to find more books of this nature when I was a young adult myself, but they were always few and far between! Imagine my blissitude in realising I have found another writer who can pen a story that re-ignites the joy I had whilst I was younger?! The contrasting differences between Light & Dark foes keeps you on the edge of your seat, as you never know which is going to shift into view nor which moment Norah is going to finally assemble all the clues she needs to understand her Uncle’s greatest lesson! A riveting jolt through a fraction of what Cobbogoth has to offer us all!

On the style of Clark’s writing:

When the reader has to become aware of how her Uncle Jack’s life was taken from him, she did it with a measured fusion of shocked-horror from the niece’s point-of-view and realistic evidence of a man who was recently murdered. She takes the reader so far to enable the scene to become apparently raw and real, but holds back a bit from making it more than it needed to be as far as the level of intensity. I appreciated her willingness to keep the realism but not forsake the breadth of the genre: YA Fantasy.

Uncovering Cobbogoth is an adventure you know you can handle, but it keeps you suspended between the pages as much as the living story within its chapters is a suspension of time. Science was always a ready interest of mine growing up, as I had half a step inside the worlds of art and science within my childhood hours. I was drawn into the dimensional theories of Quantum Physics as I grew and examined different quantum realms on my own by my early twenties, because of the curiosity they engaged my mind inside. The theory of super-strings, hidden dimensions, black holes, and galaxies hidden within a space of a seed were an exciting read for me! I need to re-take up where I left off as I only just brushed the surface of what I wanted to study, but within that pursuit, I have noticed that the science within science fiction that enlightens my mind the most contains elements and theories woven around the concept of space-time dimensions and/or the continuum. This is not the first foray I have ventured on this year to read a story with time travel or the bending of time (as we see it peripherally) as it’s core center of scientific thought. The Skin Map uses the theory of ley lines whereas Cobbogoth is using the theory of hoption holes. In each of their own ways, they are breaking down a theory of how humans of any age can travel through ‘portals’ within the space-time vortex of dimensional space. And, I personally find that exciting!

Clark has a deft hand for writing the most scientific principles of the novel in a way that is not only easy to digest, but gets you excited to learn more than what has already been provided! The curious illustrations her sister, Ms. Shakespear contributed to the story’s element of past and present gave a visual reference for the sub-stories that draw out the focus on Cobbogoth itself rather than the story set in and around Cobbogoth on a whole!

I would say that due to the nature of the high octane adventure and action sequences, as well as the brief passages of violence which take place as Norah’s life is thwarted by more danger than you could blink through, I do believe the classification of this novel as ‘YA Fantasy’ is rather apt. It would be a great story for a teenager to sink their teeth into because it is on the verge of leaving the formative years behind and entering the world on your own merits. Lessons of courage and fortitude of spirit are organically woven into the texture of the story itself. If you watched the motion picture “The Dark is Rising: The Seeker” you will not have any trouble reading this novel! At some point, I’d like to read the novel the forementioned film is based upon!

After being entranced by the debut of this wicked sweet fantasy series, I can only hope that Book 2 will not only be too far behind Book 1 (I would wait a year or more! The setting is that compelling to return too!), but I am hopeful that at the time of its release I am in plenty of time to join the forthcoming blog tour! This is surely one series I do not want to miss out on continuing the next chapter of the ensuing adventure!

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This Blog Tour Stop is courtesy of Cedar Fort, Inc.:

Cedar Fort Publishing & Media

Virtual Road Map

of “Uncovering Cobbogoth” Blog Tour:

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Uncovering Cobbogoth Book Trailer OFFICIAL 2014 via Hannah L. Clark

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{SOURCES: Author photograph, Author Biography, Book Synopsis, Book Cover, and Cedar Fort badge were provided by Cedar Fort, Inc. and were used by permission. Blog Tour badge provided by Parajunkee to give book bloggers definition on their blogs. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets were embedded due to codes provided by Twitter.  The Book Trailer for “Uncovering Cobbogoth” and Hannah L. Clark’s personal video via Hannah L. Clark had either URL share links or coding which made it possible to embed this media portal to this post, and I thank her for the opportunity to include materials that help introduce readers to her work.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2014.

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Posted Thursday, 29 May, 2014 by jorielov in Action & Adventure Fiction, Archaeology, Atlantians (Atlantis), Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Boston, Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, Coming-Of Age, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Dogrils, Earthen Magic, Elementalists, Equality In Literature, Fantasy Fiction, Fantasy Romance, Good vs. Evil, Hyperborean (Hyperborea), Iceland, Indie Author, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Life Shift, Light vs Dark, Mythological Societies, Paleontology, Romance Fiction, School Life & Situations, Science Fantasy, Shapeshifters, Supernatural Creatures & Beings, Teenage Relationships & Friendships, TLC Book Tours, YA Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction