Tag Archives: YA Novel

Book Review: No Fences in Alaska – Finding Redemption in Alaska

No Fences in Alaska

By Glen Sobey

Harper is a troubled sixteen-year-old. She is going down a path that her parents never thought a daughter of theirs would travel. Deeply religious, her father is the head of a Christian School. Harper has been expelled from the school and is dabbling in sex and drugs. Searching for herself in the cocoon of religious righteousness has not been easy. She feels as though her family has chosen religion over the love for her they once had.

When Harper finds herself over her head and can’t see a way out of the trouble she is in, she turns to the grandfather she hasn’t seen in years. He lives in Alaska, far away from the family that turned their backs on him many years ago. Her grandpa, Cooper, welcomes her without judgement or conditions. Little does Harper know that he is hiding a secret that will soon affect all of their lives.

Even though Harper knows what she wants to do, she so soon realizes that even the best laid plans are subject to change. As she grows closer to Cooper and the lifestyle in Alaska, she begins to change. Cooper encourages her to focus on her love of music again. Her outlook on life changes drastically, but will it be too late to repair the relationship with her father? Is he willing to give her the chance she needs to become herself instead of the perfect person he has tried to create?

Cooper and Harper are the perfect pair. The characters are both deeply flawed, much like most human beings. It is not the flaws that we should judge by, it is how obstacles are overcome and challenges are met. Sobey does a magnificent job of bringing real issues to the forefront and meeting them head on. That is not to say the characters always choose the best or easiest options, but realistically, who does?

Classified as a YA Novel, adults will also find that No Fences in Alaska is a heartwarming tale of redemption, love and change. The setting of Alaska is perfect. Bears, moose and the cold all play roles in the book. The beauty and serenity of the Alaskan wilderness allows more introspect than any state in the lower 48 could possibly offer.

This is the first book I’ve read by Glen Sobey. His previous book, The War Blog was also set in Alaska. Both of his novels are standalone, but both seem to have the same common thread of love, coming of age and the sharp truths some teens have to live with.

DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I have a material connection because I received a review copy for free from  Reedsy Discovery in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Copyright © 2019 Laura Hartman

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Book Review: The Girl Who Talked to Ghosts – YA Novel for Fans of Harry Potter

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The Girl Who Saved Ghosts (The Unbelievables Book 2)

By K.C. Tansley

DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I have a material connection because I received a review copy for free from Netgalley and the publisher.

Kat Langley is exhausted. Ghosts are visiting her day and night for her to assist with their reckoning. Kat can help them leave the earth and be at peace, but physically and mentally it is taking a toll on her.

It might seem like a tough job for a high school girl, but not as tough as time traveling and fighting evil last year. Unfortunately, this year will bring more challenges than ever before, not the least of which is traveling to Dumbarton, her father’s ancestral home, to learn more about her powers. But more importantly to Kat, returning to the home of her father’s family she may meet the man she has longed for all of her life. She needs to know why he left her as an infant. Finding out more about becoming the Langley heir in the process, just might help Kat figure out why she is the chosen one.

Unbeknownst to Kat, she will be called upon to save not only her family, but the future of the three other families that the Langleys have been intertwined with for centuries. Forces that are stronger than Kat will require more magic than she can summon alone, but she must try or they will all perish.

Tansley conjures up a fabulous tale of good and evil mixed with magic and danger. Her characters both dead and alive are compelling and interesting. Jumping into a different century adds a complexity that is often missing in YA novels. The main plot as well as the subplots of romance and family issues rounds out the novel in a satisfying way.

This is the first novel I’ve read in the series, and it did take a chapter or two for me to get up to speed on the back story. I would suggest reading the first in the series, The Girl Who Ignored Ghosts to avoid any confusion. That being said, I enjoyed it.

I highly recommend this series to anyone who loved Harry Potter. It is a captivating story for both YA and adults.

Copyright © 2018 Laura Hartman

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