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review 2018-03-18 01:33
Quest to the Uncharted Lands
The Quest to the Uncharted Lands - Jaleigh Johnson

When the Iron Glory's engines rumbled to life for its journey to the uncharted lands, it marked a new future for the world of Solace.

- First Sentence

 

This book is a fantastic companion to The Mark of the Dragonfly by Jaleigh Johnson. It isn't a sequel, it takes place in the same world with different characters. 

 

Stella Glass is the daughter of two scientists who are traveling on the Iron Glory to explore the uncharted lands of Solace. No one has ever explored this far west beyond the mountains. The Dragonfly Territories and Merrow Kingdom have finally reached an uneasy peace. They worked together on this ship and representatives from both countries are onboard. 

 

Stella is not permitted to go, but she has planned for months to stow away because she is terrified her parents won't come back. On the first night, Stella finds out she isn't the only stowaway. No children are allowed on the ship, but she sees a boy outside the engine room with his hands on the wall. His hands begin to glow, and then his eyes. Stella isn't sure who he is or what he is up to, but when he passes out, she drags him to her hiding place in the cargo hold. Someone doesn't want this voyage to succeed, but who and how can they be stopped?

 

So, in The Mark of the Dragonfly, we met Piper (a girl who connects to machines in an almost magical way), and Gee (a boy who can transform into a dragon). This book continues in the same fantasy steampunk world and the story is in the same heroic adventure vein. Again, I highly recommend it to students in grades 4 -8. It is just as good as the first.

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review 2018-01-06 03:42
Mark of the Dragonfly
The Mark of the Dragonfly - Jaleigh Johnson

Piper, a young girl with a talent for fixing mechanical things, finds Anna (a young girl with amnesia who needs her help) and together they take the 401 train trying to escape the man pursuing them. There they meet Gee, a boy who can transform into a dragon and who might be able to help them.

 

Piper is smart, brave and mechanically inclined, who could ask for a better heroine. She is alone and barely scraping by until she finds Anna in the meteor field (each meteor shower brings items from other worlds that the scrappers find and fix or sell). Anna doesn't know who she is but she has the mark of the dragonfly which means she is someone important to the king. Piper sees her chance to help Anna and maybe get a reward that could change her life at the same time.

 

This story is filled with magic, adventure, steampunk, humor, and a smidge of romance. I highly recommend it to readers in grades 4 through 8 (and adults who enjoy strong female characters and a bit of western/sci-fi; sort of like Firefly for the younger set). A promising series which I plan to continue.

 

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review 2016-03-29 01:25
The Secrets of Solace by Jaleigh Johnson
The Secrets of Solace - Jaleigh Johnson

 Being a huge fan of The Mark of the Dragonfly the debut of Jaleigh Johnson, I could not wait to journey back the the world she built in the first book. Johnson builds the world even more with The Secrets of Solace and while I really missed the crew of the 401, I enjoyed expanding the world with a few more mysteries and and everyone stuck in the middle of war.

 

 Lina Winterbock a apprentice to the archivists, those who study the objects and animals that come from the meteors that land upon Solace. Lina finds searching her home in the stronghold of the mountains more interesting, now that her mentor is tied up in helping refugees from the war torn lands as the Iron War ravages the lands. Everyday is lonely until Lina stumbles upon a long buried object that seems to feel and Ozben that carries a heavy secret, both push Lina's life in a different direction that will change their world.

 

 The Secrets of Solace felt like it was divided into two. The first half had it's slow turns and fast pulls, with the second half taking off like a rocket with page turning speeds in order to keep up. The first part I felt could been wrapped up with less of Lina inner monologue and perhaps more of Ozben of Lina interactions with Merlin the ship.

 

 Now that this wasn't wasted by no means. It gave us a deeper understanding of our two leads in Lina who's hiding from the pain from of losing her parents and later her only anchor pushing her away for unknown reasons. Ozben out pain of being told he was just an extra being forces him to always trying to prove himself. These two build a strong friendship as they come together because of their loneliness this emotion always helps them with the thinking and feeling ship Merlin as they try to get it out of his cave-in prison.


 We're introduced to even more mysteries through Merlin as we're shown that those at war is only a truly small part of the world with alot beyond the mountains.

The second part of the book shines as your tossed into one action packed scene to another, with alot of revelations that shuns and pulls at one's heartstrings.

The beauty of the story was sometimes we need someone to lean on and help us understand the world, to teach us that there is more then "me" and see others and understand the consequences of the not knowing or understanding before acting. Lina and Ozben open up instead of hiding within themselves. When they took the chance, it helped others open up as well.

 

 While it had it had it's up in downs, I still really enjoyed The Secrets of Solace and can't wait to see more of the world and uncover the mysteries of Solace.

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text 2016-03-27 03:52
Reading progress update: I've read 100%.
The Secrets of Solace - Jaleigh Johnson

 You know it's an amazing read when you reached the end of the book letting out a happy sigh and being teary-eyed from the FEELS this books evokes! 

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review 2016-03-26 00:00
The Secrets of Solace
The Secrets of Solace - Jaleigh Johnson
Being a huge fan of The Mark of the Dragonfly the debut of Jaleigh Johnson, I could not wait to journey back the the world she built in the first book. Johnson builds the world even more with The Secrets of Solace and while I really missed the crew of the 401, I enjoyed expanding the world with a few more mysteries and and everyone stuck in the middle of war.

Lina Winterbock a apprentice to the archivists, those who study the objects and animals that come from the meteors that land upon Solace. Lina finds searching her home in the stronghold of the mountains more interesting, now that her mentor is tied up in helping refugees from the war torn lands as the Iron War ravages the lands. Everyday is lonely until Lina stumbles upon a long buried object that seems to feel and Ozben that carries a heavy secret, both push Lina's life in a different direction that will change their world.

The Secrets of Solace felt like it was divided into two. The first half had it's slow turns and fast pulls, with the second half taking off like a rocket with page turning speeds in order to keep up. The first part I felt could been wrapped up with less of Lina inner monologue and perhaps more of Ozben of Lina interactions with Merlin the ship.

Now that this wasn't wasted by no means. It gave us a deeper understanding of our two leads in Lina who's hiding from the pain from of losing her parents and later her only anchor pushing her away for unknown reasons. Ozben out pain of being told he was just an extra being forces him to always trying to prove himself. These two build a strong friendship as they come together because of their loneliness this emotion always helps them with the thinking and feeling ship Merlin as they try to get it out of his cave-in prison.
We're introduced to even more mysteries through Merlin as we're shown that those at war is only a truly small part of the world with alot beyond the mountains.

The second part of the book shines as your tossed into one action packed scene to another, with alot of revelations that shuns and pulls at one's heartstrings.

The beauty of the story was sometimes we need someone to lean on and help us understand the world, to teach us that there is more then "me" and see others and understand the consequences of the not knowing or understanding before acting. Lina and Ozben open up instead of hiding within themselves. When they took the chance, it helped others open up as well.

While it had it had it's up in downs, I still really enjoyed The Secrets of Solace and can't wait to see more of the world and uncover the mysteries of Solace.
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