About the Book
Author: RJ Anderson
Genre: Christian YA, Fairytale, Fantasy
Cast into exile, she must return to free her people.
Banished from her underground home by Betony, the queen of the Cornish piskeys, young Ivy sets out to forge a new life for herself in the world above. But a deadly threat lingers in the mine, and Ivy cannot bear to see her people suffer while Betony refuses to believe. Somehow she must convince the queen to let them go.
Her mission only becomes more complicated when Ivy starts to dream of the ancient battles between her ancestors and the spriggan folk. Who is the strange boy in her visions? Could her glimpses of his past help Ivy find a new home for her fellow piskeys?
To find the answers, Ivy must outfly vicious predators, outwit cunning enemies, and overcome her own greatest fears. And when evil threatens the people Ivy loves best, it will take all her courage, faith, and determination to save them.
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About the Author
Born in Uganda to missionary parents, R. J. (Rebecca Joan) Anderson is a women’s Bible teacher, a wife and mother of three, and a bestselling fantasy author for older children and teens. Her debut novel Knife has sold more than 120,000 copies worldwide, while her other books have been shortlisted for the Nebula Award, the Christy Award, and the Sunburst Award for Excellence in Canadian Science Fiction. Rebecca lives with her family in Stratford, Ontario, Canada.
More from R.J. Anderson
Fear of change. Fear of an unknown future. Fear of failure, loss or regret. What fears keep you from doing what you know you should do, or being the person you ought to be?
In Nomad, the second book of the Flight and Flame trilogy, my heroine Ivy is forced to make a new life for herself after being exiled by Betony, her people’s proud and stubborn queen. Though all Ivy ever wanted was to help her people, Betony refuses to believe that the piskeys of the Delve are in danger — because to do so would mean not only questioning her own beliefs and prejudices, it would force her people to change their entire way of life.
But though Ivy is brave enough to stand up for the truth and even adapt to the strange new world she’s thrust into, she has her own fears to overcome in the course of this story. Fear of vulnerability, of unworthiness, and of making mistakes hold Ivy back as she struggles to find a way to save her friends and family. She’s only one young woman, with few allies and very little power. How can she make a difference?
Just as Moses begged God not to send him to confront Pharaoh and free the Israelites because he didn’t think he was eloquent or impressive enough, Ivy finds it hard to believe her fellow piskeys will ever listen to or believe her. The hard lesson she has to learn is that courage doesn’t come from being tough and self-confident, it comes from caring about something bigger than yourself. Not until the people she loves most are in danger does Ivy cast off her fears and take the bold steps needed to save them — but by then it may be too late.
It’s easy to get trapped by our own uncertainties and insecurities, and let fear rule our actions. Only when we take our eyes off our own frailty and act out of faith in God and love for others can we become all we were meant and made to be… and the longer we delay, the more others may suffer for it. Can we pray together for strength to start doing what’s right in our homes, our neighbourhoods and our churches, no matter how unqualified we feel to do it?
Nomad is the second step of Ivy’s journey to save her fellow piskeys and find her true calling. If you’ve enjoyed Swift and this novel, you can look forward to the final book Torch in February 2021!
— R.J. Anderson
“All my life I’ve been a nomad, or a fugitive, or both. It’s time to stop hiding, and face up to what I’ve done.” He took her hands in his. “You taught me that.”
An imaginative, outstanding sequel to Swift (see my review HERE), R.J. Anderson’s The Flight and Flame Trilogy continues with Nomad. Because it picks up where book one leaves off, this series does need to be read in order for maximum enjoyment. This story, too, is very well suited for both adults and young adults, containing enough adventure and societal relations for an older audience while also harkening to the angst of those just entering adulthood. While its predecessor did not involve a romantic thread, Nomad does, and while I will be the first to admit that I am not much of a romance fan, I have to commend Anderson for carrying it out so well in this story. She crafts it into the heart of the tale without it becoming the main focus or a distraction, which takes finesse.
The few issues that I had with Swift were resolved with Nomad, and in fact make sense in retrospect. Most of the characters in the first book were unattractively self-centered, albeit not necessarily maliciously so, and as a result sympathizing with them felt like a bit of a chore and I felt little to no connection with any of them. However, this is the beauty of trilogies: not only observing but walking alongside the characters as they grow and transform—in this case, sometimes literally! “All this time, Ivy had been obsessed with what she wanted. But she hadn’t gained the wings she longed for until she stopped fretting about how much they meant to her, and started thinking about what they could mean to someone else.”
The characters are my favorite part of this series; the fantasy element adds to their already high level of unpredictability, and I love being surprised throughout the narrative. New connections come to light, with their own set of consequences, as Ivy makes it her mission to somehow save the Delve from the deadly hazard that the current Joan, her aunt Betony, dismisses. Despite her status as an exile, Ivy determines to save her people or die trying. Strange dreams about the piskeys and spriggans of yore puzzle her as she works to create a plan and learns more about herself in the process. With themes such as sacrificial love, forgiveness, and mercy, the Christian aspect of this series is subtle but recognizable. And mercifully, there is not a cliffhanger at the end of this story—enough to leave readers anticipating the rest of the journey, but no lack of resolution to the plot of this segment.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.
My rating: 5 stars ♥♥♥♥♥
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Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, January 10
Artistic Nobody, January 11 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)
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Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 13
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Library Lady’s Kid Lit, January 15
For Him and My Family, January 16
deb’s Book Review, January 17
Inklings and notions, January 18
Blogging With Carol, January 18
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 19
The Book Chic Blog, January 19
Adventures of a Travelers Wife, January 20
Locks, Hooks and Books, January 21
To celebrate her tour, R.J. is giving away the grand prize package of a three bookmarks, two blank-inside notecards with envelopes featuring artwork by Kirk DouPonce and Rory Kurtz, a postcard with character art by Nicole Deal, a sample of custom book-related tea, and a copy of SWIFT or NOMAD!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.