Genre: Action & Adventure Fiction

Book Review | “Meant To Be” by Jessica James A military romance

Posted Sunday, 14 June, 2015 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

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 review “Meant to Be” by JKS Communications: A Literary Publicity Firm. JKS is the first publicity firm I started working with when I launched Jorie Loves A Story in August, 2013. I am honoured to continue to work with them now as a 2nd Year Book Blogger. I received my complimentary ARC copy of Meant to Be direct from JKS Communications in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

On reading military fiction:

I have blogged off and on about my appreciation for military fiction, especially when I have picked up a military-based novel; the stories which still stand out to me the most will be included in a link section below this review. If you visit one of those reviews, I’d appreciate hearing your thoughts on those pages as much as seeing your reactions to this review in the comment threads. I definitely encourage commentary on my bookish blog, as conversations are the heart of what makes reading such a wicked awesome adventure! Sharing our thoughts and collectively conversing about topics within the stories is part of the happiness I’ve had throughout my reading life.

One thing that has stood the test of time for me, is how harrowing a life the servicemen and women face each day they are deployed and protecting us back home. They have a self-sacrifice approach to service, whereupon they put the lives of the rest of us ahead of their own. In my own family, I have had great-grandfathers serving in the Civil War and throughout the 20th Century I have had either a grand-parent serving overseas or family members who took up civilian service to help those back home. Including an Auntie who was in the USO and I followed her legacy by giving back to deployed soldiers via Soldiers Angels between 2011 and 2013. I would like to pick up where I left off and become active with Wounded Warrior Project as well as local charities helping veterans.

I appreciate reading the stories writers are giving to us to read where honour, trust, and a truism of voice is being given to the servicemen and women in their narratives. Before I found Jessica James, I became familiar with Jocelyn Green‘s collective works on the Civil War, wherein I decided not to read her novels because of following her blog visits during 2013 and 2014, I noticed the medical bits were a bit too much for me to handle. My admiration for her work did not falter, as she’s a lovely woman to speak too at these online events and showcases. Another author I found in the INSPY world of military fiction is Ronie Kendig, of whom I am hoping to start ILL’ing (inter-library loaning) lateron this year.

Through my own personal readings about the Civil War via the blog tours I’ve been participating in or books which I have sought out on my own — I have a newfound respect for my great-grandfather who took up the courage to fight with the Union Army at a time where he was just starting to settle into life in America. Every family in America has a different immigrant story to share, a different lifepath that might have cross-sected with our American History at war and a new connective thread which starts to unite all of us together. Except of course, for those families of our Native Americans of whom were here before we were.

When I have the opportunity to pick up a narrative set within the historical past or the contemporary world during our current timescape, I appreciate seeing how writers knit the heart of the military into their stories. I don’t have to have a story so full-on in truism to be graphic nor vulgar (i.e. language), but it is nice to see people you can relate too in the novels. To have empathy for what they must face everyday they serve and to see a small fraction of how their lives are affected by their duties. This is one of the motivating reasons I wanted to read Meant To Be; however, the greater reason is because when the publicist at JKS pitched me the book, I felt as if she had not only read my Review Policy to such a level of insight and understanding, but that she knew *exactly!* where my readerly heart lies to travel.

I hand-selected to post my review on Flag Day,
to celebrate the Birthday of the Army,
and the sisterly holiday for our 4th of July!

Book Review | “Meant To Be” by Jessica James A military romanceMeant To Be
by Jessica James
Source: Publicist via JKS Communications

A chance encounter on the beach and a magical 24 hours transported Lauren Cantrell from thoughts of her deployment—and her secret life. She didn’t think she would see Michael “Rad” Radcliffe again—until another chance meeting half a world away reveals that she isn’t the only one with a covert career. Now they must decide: What do you do when the person you most want to protect is the one risking everything to make sure you survive?

From the sandy shores of Ocean City to the rugged terrain of Afghanistan, this transformative tale of romance, espionage, and perseverance takes readers on a spellbinding journey into the covert lives of our nation’s quiet heroes.

Sweeping and timely, it celebrates the dedication of our military, the honor and sacrifice of our soldiers, and a relationship that is tested and sustained by powerful forces of love, courage, and resolve.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

Series: For the Love of Country,


Genres: Action & Adventure Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Military Fiction, Romantic Suspense, War Drama


Published by Patriot Press

on 6th of June, 2015

Pages: 320

Genre(s): Military Romance | Romantic Suspense

Contemporary Rom | Espionage

Published By: Patriots Press

Available Formats: Paperback and Ebook

Converse via Twitter: #Meant2B and #JKSLitPublicity

About Jessica James

JESSICA JAMES is an award-winning author of military fiction and nonfiction, ranging from the Revolutionary War to present day. She is the only two-time winner of the John Esten Cooke Award for Southern Fiction, and was featured in the book 50 Authors You Should Be Reading (2010). James is a member of the Romance Writers of America, the Military Writers Association of America, and Christian Fiction Writers.

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Posted Sunday, 14 June, 2015 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, 21st Century, Action & Adventure Fiction, ARC | Galley Copy, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Review (non-blog tour), Book Trailer, Bookish Discussions, Bookish Films, Contemporary Romance, Espionage, Fly in the Ointment, Genre-bender, Indie Author, JKS Communications: Literary Publicity Firm, Military Families of the Deployed, Military Fiction, Modern Day, Post-911 (11th September 2001), Vulgarity in Literature, War Drama, War-time Romance, Warfare & Power Realignment

Blog Book Tour | “Ian Quicksilver: The Warrior’s Return” (Book No.1 of the Ian Quicksilver series!) by Alyson Peterson! #FosterKids in #YALit starring in an adventure seeking honour & redemption!

Posted Monday, 25 May, 2015 by jorielov , , , , , , , , , , , , 0 Comments

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

Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Cedar Fort whereupon I am thankful to have such a diverse amount of novels and non-fiction titles to choose amongst to host. I received a complimentary copy of “Ian Quicksilver: The Warrior’s Return” 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.

My connection to the author: Underneath my review, I talk about what I appreciated about the tone of “Ian Quicksilver” wherein I disclosed I had a conversation with the author whilst I was writing this post. The only part of the novel I spoke about was about appreciating the tone, as we talked about our mutual compassion for foster children and other things that two like-minded souls can talk about when conversing together. I didn’t feel the convo was a conflict of interest even though I was still writing up my review. If anything, it felt quite lovely to have the chance to talk to the author about unrelated subjects and finding that we had a bit in common. In other words, the conversation did not influence nor affect this review.

Interested in Reading:

On one level I wanted to read this novel because I’m a Prospective Adoptive Mum (who wants to adopt a sibling group of boys) and thereby, I am quite curious how foster children will be represented in fiction and as a whole how their inclusion will be handled throughout the novel itself. Equal to that curiosity, I happen to love YA Fantasy! No more apparent than if you read my Serial Overview of the Leland Dragons series by Jackie Gamber (or caught my 100s of tweets recommending it to everyone on Twitter!) Let’s face it, some series endeavour themselves into your soul, and Leland Dragons for me is one of those series!

I have taken up a small residence inside Children’s Lit for several moons now, as I do blog about my re-entrance back into Children’s Lit each chance I get. It is my hope after my relocation I can spend more time on devouring the Middle Grade and Young Adult authors I’ve been selecting as my own personal batches of choice for ‘next reads and must reads’ alike! Some of them I want to sample to see if I can fit inside part of the realm of where YA & MG readers regularly hang out OR if I truly am a bird of my own feather who likes to dig inside MG & YA by stories that might go overlooked by the masses. I tend to yield to thinking I’m the latter — let’s face it, I’ve never read what was popular, I’ve held myself to seeking what felt favourable to me to want to experience rather than opting for a book everyone else was already jonsing to flirt over. (in other words, I’m not a ‘fangirl‘)

I decided to take a chance on Ian Quicksilver (as I previously took a chance on An Uncommon Blue) because I keep trying to find more Literature for Boys, as it would be nice to know some books to tell my future sons about which books they might enjoy reading. I’ve found a few, but I know I’ve only just begun to uncover what they might gravitate towards!

I admit, I haven’t read the Percy Jackson series, mostly as I was considering reading it, the films came out and the trailers alone scared me silly! lol

One series I am eager to introduce to one of my nephews (as he’s Middle Grade age) includes “The Dragon in the Sock Drawer” and “The Dragon in the Driveway”, which are part of an inventive dragon series by Kate Klimo. I also read the first book in the time travel museum series that starts with “The Sixty-Eight Rooms” by Marianne Malone. I love reading Children’s Lit, and dedicated a page to it on my blog, where I highlight books I read during my own childhood as much as books I am discovering now.

Finding wicked quality stories who are fused with characters both the child and the Mum can rally behind is a bit of a quirky balancing act, but this future Mum and present day Auntie is attempting the impossible because her parents instilled such a catapult of readerly joy in her own childhood, she wants to give her own (future) children the same benefit of bookish explorations she was given herself.

Blog Book Tour | “Ian Quicksilver: The Warrior’s Return” (Book No.1 of the Ian Quicksilver series!) by Alyson Peterson! #FosterKids in #YALit starring in an adventure seeking honour & redemption!Ian Quicksilver: The Warrior's Return
by Alyson Peterson
Source: Direct from Publisher

Skinny nerdy foster kid Ian Quicksilver from Puckerbrush, Nevada, has just discovered an unsettling truth - he is the last warrior prince of Bankhir. And the fate of his home planet - and the entire galaxy - depends on him. Well, him and Arianna Hernfeld, the hottest girl in school. He needs her help and her magic to stop a sociopathic magician bent on galactic domination.

The problem is, Arianna doesn't remember anything about their past, and all of this galaxy-saving, spell-breaking stuff has to happen by Ian's sixteenth birthday. Which is only five days away.

Get ready for an action-packed, laugh-out-loud book that will keep you on the edge of your seat. Witty and perfectly paced, this is one adventure story you'll have to read to believe.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

Also by this author: The Cursed Dagger, Author Interview (The Cursed Dagger)

Series: Ian Quicksilver


Also in this series: The Cursed Dagger


Genres: Action & Adventure Fiction, Fantasy Fiction, Sci-Fantasy, YA Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction


Published by Sweetwater Books

on 12th May, 2015

Format: Paperback

Pages: 320

Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards Badge created by Jorie in Canva. Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Published By: Sweetwater Books (@SweetwaterBooks),
an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc (@CedarFortBooks)

Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook

Converse via: #IanQuicksilver

About Alyson Peterson

Alyson Peterson

Alyson Peterson lives in a mountainside gully –of all places– in northern Utah with her neurotic, shed-tastic dog, two ninja kids, and superhero husband. She spends her time painting, breaking bones at her Martial Arts class (mostly her own) and reading as many books as she can get her hands on.

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Posted Monday, 25 May, 2015 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, 21st Century, Action & Adventure Fiction, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Bookish Discussions, Bullies and the Bullied, Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, Childhood Friendship, Children's Literature, Clever Turns of Phrase, Coming-Of Age, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Equality In Literature, Fantasy Fiction, Flashbacks & Recollective Memories, Foster Care, Humour & Satire in Fiction / Non Fiction, Indie Author, Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards, Life Shift, Literature for Boys, Methodology of Writing Science Fiction & Fantasy, Modern Day, Orphans & Guardians, Prejudicial Bullying & Non-Tolerance, School Life & Situations, Science Fantasy, Small Towne USA, Supernatural Fiction, Teenage Relationships & Friendships, Trauma | Abuse & Recovery, Writing Style & Voice, YA Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction

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.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Read an Excerpt of the Novel:

Quicksand by Henery Press

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

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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