Book Review: Draven's Light by Anne Elisabeth Stengl

Draven's Light was one of the books I received for Christmas and also the first book I read in 2016!  Here are my thoughts on this Tale of Goldstone Wood.

About the Book

In the Darkness of the Pit The Light Shines Brightest Drums summon the chieftain’s powerful son to slay a man in cold blood and thereby earn his place among the warriors. But instead of glory, he earns the name Draven, “Coward.” When the men of his tribe march off to war, Draven remains behind with the women and his shame. Only fearless but crippled Ita values her brother’s honor. The warriors return from battle victorious yet trailing a curse in their wake. One by one the strong and the weak of the tribe fall prey to an illness of supernatural power. The secret source of this evil can be found and destroyed by only the bravest heart. But when the curse attacks the one Draven loves most, can this coward find the courage he needs to face the darkness?

My Thoughts

Tales of Goldstone Wood is one of my favorite book series.  Naturally, I had very high expectations for this book.  I was a little disappointed.  It could have been a fabulous Tale...if it had been longer.  There wasn't enough time for me to really get to know and like the characters.  It was a little predictable (or maybe I am just good at predicting things).  The end did not satisfy me at all (no spoilers here).  *shrugs* It wasn't my favorite.  

One thing I must say before I go is that Draven is an epic name.  There.  I said it.  :)

About the Author

Anne Elisabeth is the award-winning author of the Tales of Goldstone Wood, a series of fantasy adventure novels told in the classic Fairy Tale style. She is married to the handsome man she met at fencing class and lives with him, a gaggle of cats, and one long-suffering dog in NC.


5 Things That Will Make Me Put A Book Down

I don't know about you, but I have stopped reading more than one book for various reasons.  Here are 5 things that will cause me to stop reading.

1. Excessive bad language.  

This one is a huge thing for me.  If there is more than one bad word, I will definitely put the book down.

2. Not enough stakes.  

If the character's journey doesn't have enough risk, I am not very interested.  I read books to be taken on a journey that isn't safe.

3. Confusing plot.  

I get that readers aren't supposed to know everything in the beginning.  However, if I don't understand anything by the end of the first couple of chapters, I will put the book down.

4. Undeveloped characters.  

If I don't care about the characters, why should I go on a journey with them?  If I don't like the characters, I am really not interested.

5. Bad writing.  

If writing is really bad, yet it is published, it screams AMATEUR.  It makes me feel weird because the author must be very proud of their work and they think it is great, but in all honesty, it needs more work.


What are some things that make you put a book down?  Do you read finish all books no matter what?


2016 - The Year In Which I Make (And Complete) New Years Resolutions

Do you ever make New Years Resolutions and never do them?  I sure do.  But this year, I am going to try my very hardest to actually do them.  Ready?


-Finish The Clockshifter.
-Finish the first draft of To Be Awake.
-Query agents and publishers.
-Attend Realm Makers.


-Create a blogging schedule (and follow it).
-Make my blog more interesting for readers.
-Find the right writing style for my blog.
-Make it as professional as possible.
-Have at least one person guest post.  (Anyone want to volunteer?)


-Read 100 books.
-Have at least one book signed.


-Exercise more.
-Read the Bible every day.
-Visit Katie again.

Survey Results

On December 31, I posted a survey asking about various things about my blog.  Based on the results, here are some changes that will be happening on Elvish Pens, Fantastical Writings.

- More book reviews.  This one surprised me.  Book reviews are posts I generally skip over and search for later when I am ready to read a book.  I was going to stop posting them here, but I guess I will keep writing them!

- Author interviews.  I will try my very hardest to find some authors to interview!

- I've made a blogging schedule.  I will be posting my main posts on Monday.  If there are any announcements, they may be posted on any other day of the week.  :)

- I have redesigned the blog.  You probably noticed that already.  :)  A few of you pointed out that it was hard to read.  I had been wanting to fix that for a long time, but it all wasn't coming together.  I couldn't get everything to work together to create one "flawless" design.  Therefore, I redesigned it all, keeping the essence of the old design, while making it easy to read.

- The posts you suggested.  :) I will keep these a surprise for now.


So You Want to be a Blogger ||| Starting Out

So you want to be a blogger, huh?  It may seem as easy as coming up with a name and posting, but honestly, it is not so simple.  There are so many things to consider...but here is the basics on how to begin.

1. Figure out what you want to blog about.  

In general, what is your blog about?  Are you posting bookish things?  Food?  Fashion?  Exercise?  Life?

2. Come up with a name.  

Make sure that the name is intriguing and conveys what your blog is about.  If your blog is named Delicious Food by Nancy, you should probably be a food blogger, not a fashion blogger.  Also, make sure that you like it and won't go change it on a whim.  You should always keep your blog name the same.
          Tip: Make the URL to your blog the same as your blog name.  Using the same example as above, it would be www.deliciousfoodbynancy.blogspot.com.

3. Design your blog.  

I don't know about you, but if a blog doesn't look professional, I will most likely leave before reading anything.  That is how important design is.  You want it to be eye-catching, clean, and related to your name and niche.  Don't be afraid to learn from other blogs.  Use their ideas (though please don't steal their names or exact designs.)

4. Write posts.

This is why you started the blog anyway!  Figure out how often you want to post and try to keep it consistent.

I am making this into a series, So You Want to be a Blogger.  I plan to expand on each of the four points.

A Thank You

Thank you all who took the survey!  A lot of you had great tips on design, and I thank you for that!  I am trying to keep the essence of the old design along with making it easier to read and cleaner looking.  Rest assured, this is not the way it will look once I am done.  I am still working on it.

What blogging tips can you give to new bloggers?  How did you come up with the name for your blog?