Imagination reigns in Carina. As Jade barters her way through four planets, she must battle gods, creatures, the elements, and her own fears and beliefs. Will she find her answers and escape before she’s trapped in Carina forever?
Best Book Bit
The blackness of space retreated behind us as the driver whipped his poor horses to The Mango Sun. I leaned forward to search for clouds, mountains, buildings—any sign of civilization—but all I could see was the planet’s surface, that multicolored peel. Without an atmosphere, we would die.
“Prepare for landing,” the driver instructed.
“Prepare for landing? Are you kidding me? How—”
Before I could brace myself, he dipped the chariot straight down for several hundred yards. My legs flung into the air, and I closed my eyes, fearing my fate. The wind roared in my ears. Without sight or any other sound, I wasn’t sure if I was still holding on to the chariot. Then I felt the driver wrap one arm around me and pull me back down. I clung to him, digging my fingers into his arm until the horses came to a halt and we were upright again.
I opened my eyes. We were in the midst of a fog—red, orange, and green—that was coating the surface of The Mango Sun. Above me I could still see the rest of Carina.
The driver lifted me out of the chariot and set me on the ground, where one of the horses was trying to dig a hole. The other horse bucked, and they were both promptly whipped. Then the driver turned back to me.
“Of all the planets!” he cried with laughter. “What is your name, child?”
“Jade Callaghan!” I shouted back, looking at the horses. I had a feeling I didn’t want to be there any more than they did.
“Well, Jade Callaghan, enjoy your stay!”
The last thing I saw was a glint in his eyes, and then the thick haze rolled over him and his chariot as he departed.
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It all began quite normally with a group of teenage friends playing an innocent game of hide and seek. Unfortunately, a tragedy occurs during the game and one of the friends dies, who just happens to be the twin brother of the main character, Jade.
Jade can’t deal with her twin brother’s demise, so she escapes to another world, just as we all have probably wished to do many times in our unbearable grief. Only, Jade does truly escape to a far galaxy.
Everything she’s ever been taught or that she believes to be true, is tested. Her faith in herself, her friends, and family. Her idea of religion—good versus evil.
She meets a multitude of characters, who, each in their own way, help Jade learn more about her abilities, and the true power of a choice. She learns how to harness the power of her thoughts and feelings, as she is thrown into one terrifying new place after another.
This was probably the most imaginative book I’ve ever read. It put me in mind of the movie What Dreams May Come, with the fantastical elements and characters, and the themes of faith, religion, and tests to the human spirit.
There were times when this story became so unbelievable, I almost wanted to stop reading, but it keep such a stronghold on me throughout, I had to finish it. And I’m glad I did because it did NOT end as I suspected it would.
This author is astoundingly imaginative and talented, and I don’t remember even one typo within. I was truly impressed by her extensive vocabulary and her ability to bring a scene to life with just the right words:
Here are a few of my favorite lines:
*Water would lap up onto the concrete where we had been told not to run, but run is precisely what we did. We ran from the pool to the dam to the soccer field, across streets and through front doors and out backs, our charmed thoughts keeping pace in a neon could—the brilliant dust of our souls. We wanted the whole world to see.
*With each step I took, the path lengthened before me and vanished behind me. I was walking in place—an ever-slanting place—while blank space rode on my back.
And probably one of the most important phrases that tied in with every event in this story was:
“Listen to me, Jade, and never forget this: How you behave in life is how you will behave in death.”
I enjoyed this story and I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys high-action fantasy reads. The worlds this author has built between these pages will captivate you.
I would have loved to see Jade and Justin’s relationship develop more. She did find a new guy in a new world, but (he) Sal just always felt more like a friend to me.
This book has a deep meaning about a sad, depressed girl trying to find her way back home. She has to decide to believe in her God in order to get back.
I would recommend this to a friend who enjoys complex fantasy stories.
She receives a “visit” and is soon swept away in a golden chariot, to a galaxy far from her own.
As she travels through worlds in this new galaxy she is faced with danger, life threatening situations, and a true struggle to find herself amidst the chaos Carina ensues.
Kelsey Hall did a fantastic job writing this action packed fantasy novel. I’m not generally one who would enjoy a novel like this, and was expecting a “typical romance” going in. (I don’t read blurbs etc.) but I was absolutely astounded by my love for this novel. (And mangos- haha)
I wanted so desperately for Jade to make it through all the chaos in Carina, to find what she truly needed, and to get out alive. (I’m not saying whether or not she does). In the most obscure way Jade was relatable, and she felt so real even in a world and Galaxy so far out of our realms of possibility. Faced with the tragedy she suffered, anyone would feel similar to her.
I LOVED some of the characters she meets along her journey, one in particular. (Not giving names or details to avoid spoilers). It’s so far fetched, and so exciting nonetheless.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a truly wonderful story.