Tag Archives | teen Talk Radio

YA Worth Reading: Cascade, Lisa Bergren

Review by Nicole O’Dell

Back in February, I reviewed WATERFALL, book one in the highly acclaimed River of Time series. Have you read it yet? If not, you need to, because you’re going to want to get your hands on book two immediately. And you’re in luck! CASCADE releases today.

CASCADE is the perfect follow up to WATERFALL and picks up right where book one left off. Gabi Betarrini (17) and her sister, Lia (15), are back at it again. Though they’ve returned from the Medival past to to their mom’s current-day Etruscan archeological dig, Gabi can’t stay. She must return to Medival Italy because Marcello, the handsome knight she fell in love with in book one, is in danger.

Still dressed in their Medival attire, Gabi and Lia convince their mom to travel back in time with them. When they arrive at their destination, they find themselves in the midst of accusations and backstabbing. Who are their friends, and who are their enemies? Even they don’t know for sure.  In the midst of a war, the sisters realize that they are targeted. With a couple of swords and some blind faith,  these two teenagers are forced to fight for their very lives.

The combination of romance, adventure, and humor reach a delectable balance in CASCADE,  and Lisa Bergren has done an awesome job of keeping the characters vibrant. The River of Time Series is one of my favorite YA picks so far. The bar is set for future YA romance.  And, though the series is definitely YA fiction, I truly believe that any reader would devour these books.

That all being said, I do want to issue a bit of a disclaimer for the squeamish among you. CASCADE does portray quite a bit of violence–even some torture. I wouldn’t say it’s at all gory or sensationalistic–it is true to the story–I just wanted to make sure that any sensitive readers knew what they were getting into.

Be sure to read WATERFALL first, if you haven’t. Then grab CASCADE right away, because TORRENT, the third and final book in the River of Time series, will follow in September, 2011–right around the corner. Thank you to David C. Cook, publisher, for putting these books out in such rapid succession!

Read an Excerpt (WATERFALL):http://www.scribd.com/doc/46485013/Waterfall

Read an Excerpt (CASCADE):http://www.scribd.com/doc/52610822/Cascade-by-Lisa-T-Bergren

Lisa Tawn Bergren is the best-selling, award-winning author of over 30 books, with more than 1.5 million copies sold. She just finished writing a Colorado historical trilogy (the first book,  Breathe,  Sing and  Claim), and has begun a teen series called River of Time (Waterfall, book 1, comes out in February 2011).

Lisa’s time is split between managing home base, writing (including a fair amount of travel writing), consulting and freelance editing (with a little speaking here and there). She’s married to Tim, a liturgical sculptor, graphic designer and musician. They have three kids—Olivia (15), Emma (12) and Jack (7).


We have a copy of Cascade to give away to one of you! If you’d like to enter to win, leave a question for Lisa Bergren in your comment. I’m going to be interviewing her on Teen Talk Radio in a couple of weeks, and I’ll pass your questions along to her then.

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Young Adult Worth Reading – London Confidential

Hi there!
Nicole O’Dell here. I am so excited to bring you London Confidential, a great new series of books by Sandra Byrd and Tyndale House. You should check out the trailer—how often do you get to listen to a teenager with a British accent?

Bestselling author Sandra Byrd has a new fiction series for teen and tween girls out called London Confidential. This is a four-book series that follows 15-year-old Savannah Smith around as her family moves to London from the United States, showing how “Savvy ” deals with the pressures of trying to fit in, make friends, and live out her faith.

Savvy is the perfect fifteen-year-old character to captivate the hearts of the targeted 9-12 year-old reader. She’s interesting and compelling, but real. Savvy struggles with the same things every tween and teen struggles with, and the age-old battle of trying to fit in as the new girl in school is ramped up when Savvy is dropped into a completely different culture.

I loved the quick, witty writing style and the unique approach to a YA series. The idea of living overseas is interesting to everyone, so tweens and teens will enjoy learning how it works out for Savvy. My ten-year-old daughter, Emily, dove right into the first book as soon as I received them. She gave it a huge thumbs up and has already started the second one. She wanted to know what it would take to be an exchange student or move to London.

I actually had the privilege of interviewing Sandra on Teen Talk Radio this past Thursday night. We had a blast chatting about teens and why we do what we do. She’s an exciting and vibrant person doing some awesome things! You should check out the show–Sandra is on for the entire first half. Visit www.choicesradio.com to see a list of all available podcasts, or click HERE to go right to Sandra’s.

Here are a few words from Sandra Byrd just for you…

What was your inspiration for this series?
God is good, all the time. If something that seems bad happens, pray, and wait. Work through it, and promise yourself that you will look back on it in a few hours or days or months and you’ll see it from a different perspective. A lot of times we beg God to let things turn out the way we want, or to tell us how they are going to be. But if he did, every time, we’d never need faith. And scripture tells us that our faith is what is pleasant to him, in fact, it says, without faith, we cannot please him. So he’s not going to rearrange everything so that you never need faith, or he’d be rearranging things so he’d never be pleased with you. Build your faith muscle little by little, with heavier and heavier circumstances, and you’ll be totally buff. The Bible says that kind of faith is what is required to bring hope. And we all want hope, right? These books are about having fun and having hope while you wait for everything to turn out okay.

Have you ever lived overseas?
I did move a lot as a child, but not overseas. I did stay in Europe for two short periods during high school, though, as an exchange student: once in Germany when I was 15, and once in France when I was 17. I’ve been back to France in the past couple of years and spent two weeks in London this year. So I get there regularly, though not as often as I’d like!

Is Savannah much like you?
Savvy is some like me, in that she likes to write and has some self confidence crises, and some like my daughter in that she’s fashion-conscious and bold. I think there are little bits of me in every character I write – even Aunt Maude! – but I’ve never consciously modeled one of my characters after myself.

Other than Savvy, which character stands out to you the most?
Oh, definitely Aunt Maude. I wish she lived next door! But then I’d have to move to London. Hmmm ….

I’m pleased to announce that in generous Tyndale House fashion, we’re able to give one very blessed reader a FULL set of the four London Confidential books.

Just leave a comment to enter to win these books, and, while you’re commenting, we’d love to know if you’ve ever been overseas. If not, where would you love to go?

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