Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Luminosity by Jackie Castle

  Good Day Dear Readers,
The Queen here with a special book feature. Our own scribe in residence, Jackie Castle has written the second book in The White Road Chronicle series titled, Luminosity.  If you read and enjoyed Illuminated, then you'll want to pick up the next book in this series to see what happens next.

Happy Reading,
The Queen

Book Information:

Publisher and date: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (September 24, 2013)
Reading level: 12 and up
Book Info: Paperback: 328 pages
Genre: Teen fantasy
ISBN: 978-1492818557
Author has enabled Amazon book match. Purchase a print book and get the e-book for free.

Book Theme:
Strong friendships endure time and distance, Finding your strengths and talents, facing your fears and running your race.

Book Summary
Alburnium is at war.
Eighteen-year-old Alyra’s joy of being reunited with her family fades when Prince Issah sends her beloved friends away on various quests across the kingdom. Allies must be gathered to stand against the dark ruler, Lord Darnel. The reclusive dragons happen to be necessary allies. Alyra’s friendship with the young drake, Crystal, offers a slim hope of being heard by them instead of being burned.

Alyra must travel to Drakensburg with her resentful brother, Ethan, a Messenger, who doesn’t trust her, a prankster Okbold intent on honoring his debt to her, and a unseen Guardian Instructor, who must teach her how to use the Illuminate’s gift before they reach the dragons' hold. Ethan has the words to persuade the dragons. Alyra carries the red fruit of the white tree to present as a peace offering. Until she finds Tarek, beaten and near death.

She must choose between using the fruit to save the man she loves, or the kingdom she serves.

As usual, I rarely offer activities for teen books, however, I will include a few discussion questions and if you have a reluctant reader in your life, check out the suggestions provided by RIF's parent's handbook on how to encourage readers, for ideas.

Discussion Questions:
1. Alyra now knows she has the gift of being an Illuminate. But knowing what you can do, and learning how to do it, are two different things. Discuss ways she learned to use her light gift in the book.

2. Now think about your own abilities. What are you good at? What do you think your giftings are? Not sure? Read the article: Being the Piece You're Meant to Be and then take one or both of the tests provided to see where your strengths are.

3. What are some practical ways you can learn you better your strengths?

4. Why do you think the author chose to use centaurs in her story? What do they represent to you?

5. Each of the characters faced obstacles in their quest. Do you find yourself facing problems when you want to accomplish something? Is there anything in the story that might encourage you to keep going?

6. Alyra's relationship with her instructor, Riyah, was troublesome most of the time. Why do you think Alyra saw Riyah the way she did? What happened to her when things started to change? Why do you think that was?

7. Are there things hindering you from seeing those put in your life who are meant to help you? What barriers do you think there are and how can you overcome them?

8. Do you hope Stitch will grow a beard as much as he does? Why do you think that's so important to him?

9. Why do you think being promoted is so important to Jerin? Do you think it will really make a difference in who he is? What are your thoughts about gaining status to help you feel more important, or worthwhile? Is that a truth or a lie?

10. What themes stood out in this story that spoke to you? Why do you think that was?

Get your journal and write down your thoughts about these questions, or discuss with others who've also read the story.

For parents of teens:

Ways to encourage teens to read...
  • Set an example. Let teens see you reading for pleasure.
  • Furnish your home with a variety of reading materials. Leave books, magazines, and newspapers around. Check to see what disappears for a clue to what interests your teenager.
  • Give teens an opportunity to choose their own books. When you and your teen are out together, browse in a bookstore or library. Go your separate ways and make your own selections. A bookstore gift certificate is a nice way of saying, "You choose."
  • Build on your teen's interests. Look for books and articles that feature their favorite sports teams, rock stars, hobbies, or television shows. Give a gift subscription to a special interest magazine.
  • View pleasure reading as a value in itself. Almost anything your youngsters read—including the Sunday comics—helps build reading skills.
  • Read some books written for teens. Young adult novels can give you valuable insights into the concerns and pressures felt by teenagers. You may find that these books provide a neutral ground on which to talk about sensitive subjects.
  • Make reading aloud a natural part of family life. Share an article you clipped from the paper, a poem, a letter, or a random page from an encyclopedia—without turning it into a lesson.
  • Acknowledge your teen's mature interests. Look for ways to acknowledge the emerging adult in your teens by suggesting some adult reading you think they can handle.
  • Keep the big picture in mind. For all sorts of reasons, some teenagers go through periods without showing much interest in reading. Don't panic! Time, and a few tips from this article, may help rekindle their interest.

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