REVIEW and a RECIPE
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First Rule PR presents Dianne Gardner’s Virtual Book Tour for The Ian’s Realm Saga‘s first installment, DECEPTION PEAK. A literary young adult adventure fantasy tale. I am thrilled to be hosting Dianne and her entourage from Deception Peak with my own review for my tour firms other hosts as teenager Ian Wilson follows his father through a magical portal. Please check the schedule below and find out what else is going on, especially today! Se reviews and several guest visits for a First Rule week long tour. Horses run free, the wind sings prophetic melodies, their computer avatars come to life, and First Rule Hosts follow the rules by talking about this new YA Fantasy.
OCTOBER 15th – OCTOBER 24th
- 10/15/2012 – I Smell Sheep – Guest Post
- 10/15/2012 – Cabin Goddess – Review
- 10/15/2012 – Ali Talks Live – Podcast
- 10/16/2012 – Spellbound By Books – Guest Post
- 10/17/2012 – Workaday Reads – Review
- 10/18/2012 – Ali’s Bookshelf – Review
- 10/19/2012 – Babs Book Bistro – Podcast
- 10/20/2012 – Bunny’s Review – Interview
- 10/20/2012- The Book Connoisseur – Interview
- 10/20/2012 – Book and Movie Dimension – Guest Post
- 10/21/2012 - The Independent Review - Review
- 10/21/2012 – Babs Book Bistro – Review
- 10/21/2012 – Me and Reading – Guest Post
- 10/22/2012 – Stuck in Books – Guest Post
- 10/23/2012 – Splash of Our Worlds -Review
- 10/24/2012 – Evie Bookish – Guest Post
FIVE STAR READ!!!
I want to rush out right now and buy this for my discerning reader and petulant twelve-year-old Liam (see the face? You can just tell he is a book snob like his mom!)
This is a child who is reading at college level and has been since he was 9. It is a constant struggle keeping him in books because it seems these days so many series skip from first chapter books and fly right through the Wonder Years, right past GO and forget the not all the boys play sports or video games, some of these boys read. There are only so many times a child can read Harry Potter or the Warrior Cat Series. Sure, there are books out there written for boys, but as I said, discerning… book snob.. petulant? With such a small pile to choose from, plus being über picky when it comes to what he reads. He read Anchihiiroo – Origin of an Antihero (Toonopolis Shorts, #1) by J.Rodden and though he said it was to short (umm yes Liam, it is a short story) he liked it, in fact he gave it five moose poo’s! (which is a five-star rating in any 12-year old boys mind because at this age forget about bow ties, moose poo is cool), but he was not interested in reading anything else in the series. He needs meat on his bones, he is not Henry Jones (oh and BTW never teach your children old Choir songs you sang when you were in school, especially jazz ones. This is one of his favorite to sing when he decides he does not want to eat what is for dinner or is in the shower or just plain old in high-speed monkey-doodle mode tunes and .. OK maybe you should because it is hilarious every time I hear him sing it!)
Having said and shared all of that, he is also a child who read Ender’s Game, (over one weekend mind you, he would not put it down even when eating, and glared if we even suggested it.) got all hyper, jumped up and down and did a fist pump and a tiny bit of jazz hand action, turned around three times and said with open arms, dropping to his knees (I am not exaggerating here, and yes obviously this is my child) and clasped his hands in front of his chest giving me his best begging for it look and said
“More… mother dear, give me MORE!”
To which I promptly and with aplomb gave him Speaker for the Dead to which he replied with one raised eyebrow, “Hmmmm? Mom, ummm the dead don’t talk, this is not like that stupid movie is it?” OK so he gets to watch weird and bad movies with me, but let us get to the point, the second in the Ender series was just to old for him subject wise, even the title had him going “meh” He got about a third of the way through and set it aside. When I asked him about it he shrugged his shoulders and said, “I just don’t get Ender’s new gig anymore, he is to old for me. I will finish it later.” As in, he will pick it up in a few years and get it. His brother, who is going to be 23 did the same thing at about the same age and at 14 finished the series and re-read it several times. My point is, where are the wonderful books I remember reading as a petulant discerning book snob of 12? We had them in spades! But I was girl…wait I still am I think but I digress. Sure there are the classics, and Liam has read them all. He has a beautiful collection of leather-bound books he has read over and over, especially Tale of Two Cities and Treasure Island.
Deception Peak is a book that will be part of his Christmas pile of plunder this year. This child is going to adore it and the series will be in his favorite pile. He still has typical tendencies of regular 12-year olds, loves video games – (the child is also scary good at them because of his dexterity level. Did you know that dexterity is directly linked to your comprehension and reading skills as a child. Seriously go google it) tells bathroom flavored humor like a pro, and likes to ride his bike over homemade ramps. This book is written at just the perfect pace for a kids his age to stay intrigued and hooked, it does not get muddled down with details, it keeps you holding your breath at the right moments and reads like a classic fantasy. The story structure for the fantasy aspect is somewhat like one of those good old fashioned RPG games on the computer. Liam loves those games and will get all the video game innuendoes and subtleties veiling a very hard lesson being taught for not only the child protagonist, Ian in the story, but also his father Alex. I would highly recommend this book to single fathers to read along with their sons. I get goose bumps when I think of some of the haunting songs the author uses as story breaks throughout the tale.
“Brave on little soldier, brave into the night
Your journeys before you, your song’s in the light
For many you seek and many you save
Though darkness surrounds you, and powers are great
Though night overcomes the sweetness of day
Brave on through despair, Press on in the fight
The tunnel of grieving, imprisoned by might
The worst will be over and darkness will ebb
You will aft find your way, and wake up in your bed”
pgs. 55-56 — Deception Peak -Dianne Lynne Gardner ©2012
Ian is a child I did not really like at first, yes he is a teenager and yes he has had it hard. His mother died and it seems as if his father was barely hanging by a thread he was so wrapped up in his grief. He is a bit, but he was not the kid in school that is always picked on, but just a smart kid that mouthed off, had a flippant attitude and drew beautifully rendered swords in the corners of his in textbooks. Yep, typical geek behavior I would have to say. His father ran a foundry and made medieval armory, he also was a video game designer. It seems to me this was a project which i to be for both of them, Ian is very artistic (text-book – drawing of swords yada yada?). What more could a boy want? Yet he is typical in the fact some of it is taken a bit for granted. Not a totally typical teenager, he has an obvious deep and abiding love and respect for his father, but is continually having inner dialogues questioning his fathers actions. This turns out to be another great story device making it so appropriate and one that should be used in a classroom setting for reading. It really is written with such intelligent and incredibly woven seamless segues. Oh if she was an SCA’er she would be in the Order of the Winged Harp where all great Bards reside!
Right from the start of Deception Peak, you can see there is a lot of love between father and son, but there is also a sense of distance. There is more talking at each other instead of to each other, almost going through the motions, wanting to connect and needing too but never actually making it. The novel starts off with a dream of Ian’s. It is a perfect prologue for what is to come in this awesome tale. But what happens in the next chapter was a complete surprise to me! I was totally taken back by his father’s irresponsible and child-like actions. If it were Ian it would be understandable, being it would have been the actions of a reckless youth. But for a father to thrust his son into this world which started off as rendering a 3D portal engine as a project for father and son, to exploring a world literally within a computer, or at least the computer program created a “portal” to this world, or …. a “window” (I had to giggle a lot when I read this and tittered a bit more when I read it glowed blue, Liam is going to think this is SO cool! He is a Windows™ man!), had my head spinning a bit. I ended up going back and re-reading the first three chapters and felt a bit better about it. Though, that was me, don’t take that as a ding, my brain was not functioning to clearly, I think I fell asleep mid-chapter on that one, anyway moving along.
With trepidation on Ian’s part, and having nightmares or weird prophetic dreams with more quest like songs being song in the air when he is awake and asleep, they enter the portal and begin to explore a little more each day. They even find horses and ride being able to explore more and more. Ian is still not sure what to think of all of this. (oh and by this point I really could not put it down. If I had not been feeling off physically and falling asleep in my book all the time, which is cool with books like this because I just keep going in my own version). The real action starts when Alex decides they are going camping for the weekend, and not just a few hours. By this time, the learn from one of the characters Ian ever rendered while beginning the video game project, there is a dragon (Yes Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dave there is a Dragon!). A big, bad scary dragon, and Ian? He does not want anything to do with it. Smart lad as it turns out. His father? Not so much so… To go any further would be doing spoilers, and you all know me, Sweeties, I do not do spoilers.
Parents of boys, and of adventurous girls of the age range from 12 up, because let’s face it I loved the story. Yes it is YA and it is not written for me. This is not a book written for soccer mom’s and labeled young-adult fiction, this is a book for kids of middle school and up who want a good hearty fantasy read. Who like meat on their bones and want dragons, and swords and quests, OH MY! Just in time for Christmas. We are debating Paperwhites for the kids and I may have to load this on them if we decide to do so. But he is getting a hard copy, because only in the hard copy do you get the beautiful illustrations our author has done.
Now for even more fun (yes even after that incredibly festive review, the pretty pictures AND the giveaway, I give you recipes straight out of the Deception Peak cookbook!
Kaempern Camp Bread
A good unleavened flat bread filled with crushed pinion nuts and wild herbs of the field such as rosemary and thyme. Wrapped in linen cloth this bread is the perfect food for vitamins and nutrition when on the run from a dragon, or searching for little men in the woods. Eat sparingly, you may find yourself in a prairie without other food source!
- Four hands of flour
- Crushed pinions
- Pinch of rosemary
- Pinch of thyme
- Spludgeon of bear grease (or a tbsp of cooking oil if you’ve not been hunting lately -The Cabin Goddess has bear grease so I am covered)
- Salt to taste
- Water from Aspen Creek (or your faucet, whichever is handiest -err or the water wagon because there is no running water at the cabin). If you can warm the water first, that works best.
- Mix. Form into balls the size of your palm. Toss (or roll for the less skilled) into a flat disc. Roast on the fire, grill or frying pan until toasty.
- Tastes best when dipped in mutton stew and consumed by the fire in a deer hide yurt.
Menek Mutton Stew
- One leg of lamb or mutton (sorry I Smell Sheep!)
- Water to fill your pan or crock pot ¾ filled
- Seasonal Vegetables (whatever is on hand)
- Potatoes (cubed)
- Slow cook the mutton until it’s done. Add veggies and potatoes.
- Slow cook until meat falls off the bones and vegetables are tender. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Enjoy hot with Kaempern Camp Bread and a good conversation around the fire.
Directed and edited by Nancy Frye | Music by Kevin McLeod and Ori Vidislavski
- Genre: YA Fantasy
- 228 pages
Teenage Ian Wilson follows his father through a portal into a deceptively beautiful Realm, where horses run free, the wind sings prophetic melodies, and their computer avatars come to life.
But separation from his father puts Ian in peril as he’s abducted by a tribe of dragon worshipers and forced to find his courage.
As he struggles for his freedom and embarks on a perilous search for his father, Ian meets the true peacekeepers of the Realm and learns of a greater purpose for his being in there.
This is the first novel of the Ian’s Realm Saga.
Dianne Lynn Gardner is both an author and illustrator. She’s an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and the National League of American Pen Women. She has written Young Adult Fantasy novels as well as articles for national magazines and newspapers and she is an award winning artist.
Dianne spent many years living out in the desert wilderness of the American Southwest, lived in a hogan made from adobe and cedar for thirteen years, co-owned 25 horses both pure bred and Native American ponies, traveled horseback and by wagon throughout the Navajo reservation, herded sheep and goat, worked in the forest planting trees and piling, farmed on barren soil and even lived in a teepee for a short while. She spent many long years using survival skills as a way of life.
Later she studied pastoral counseling and was a Pastor’s apprentice at a mainline church. She and her husband have been feeding the homeless for over twelve years. Today she draws on both her survival experiences and her love for people, especially young people, into her writing seeking not only to give her readers a firm understanding of her stories’ characters, but a rich appreciation of nature.
Find Dianne around the web and don’t forget to follow the rest of the amazing week long tour at the blogs above!
(The Kindle edition does not have the illustrations that are in the printed copy. However, you can see them at this link along with their captions and the chapters they are located in.)