Thursday, March 25, 2021

The Patient from Silvertree (Silvertree Book 1) by Marian Dribus

The Patient from Silvertree is a YA realistic fiction book that was sent to me by the author. 40 years ago, a brilliant scientist named Peterson invented a new drug to treat cancer. However, his experiments were unethical, and so he went to jail. Sixteen-year-old Lisa's father is an oncologist. One day an old friend of her father's comes to visit, delivering an ultimatum to treat her cancer with the drug Peterson invented. When he agrees to illegally treat her, it draws unwanted attention that puts Lisa and everyone she loves in danger. 

The Patient from Silvertree is one moral dilemma after another, where nearly each impossible decision brought them one step closer to losing their conscience or humanity. This story goes down a darker path of medical ethics and the life-and-death sacrifices one is willing to make for the ones they love- or the ones they loathe. While I tend to love inspirational stories, ones that show the darker side of humanity are just as- if not more- important.

Graham, one of the main antagonists, is my favorite character. He is not evil, but is held in an impossible situation and is forced to commit horrific acts. He does have a moral compass and seems to do his best to avoid violence. I love it when the "villain" has internal conflicts. I hope in the sequel his backstory is revealed. The book also touches on emotional issues, which were mostly depicted realistically. As far as the romance between Lisa and Josh goes, it was predictable, but also pressured and unusual. For the plot, that turns out to be an advantage.

This was one of the more interesting, skillful endings that I have read in a long time. Quite the contrary from happily ever after, this ending is perfect for the story's darker tone and setting with a perfect balance between resolution and the unknown. At the end of the day we want all the bad guys to be caught and the good guys to win- but is that realistic, or purely a false hope? I would argue that the cover needs to be adjusted to highlight that ominous focus, but that is the only critique I have.

I highly recommend this book and am excited to read the sequel that takes place four years later, The Scientist's Daughter

Title: The Patient from Silvertree
Author: Marian Dribus
Publisher: Marian Dribus
Pages: 275
Series: Yes, Book 1 of 2
Rating: 5 Stars

Monday, March 8, 2021

Kindled Embers (The Dryad's Cede Book 1) by K.C. Simos

Kindled Embers is a middle grade fantasy story that was sent to me by the author. When 12-year-old Eliza's foster father Jonas, a war hero, is falsely accused of stealing the Royal Pearl, she helps Jonas escape. Eliza decides the best way to clear his name is solve the theft themselves by following the riddles left behind.

Kindled Embers is a cute, fun story, but it also brought up a significant amount of moral issues and lessons. One of which surrounded what makes us worthy of being loved or receiving kindness. Differences in social class were very clear as a lesson of being kind and valuing everyone regardless of social standing was present. How adults behave does effect children; they are not invisible and are effected by the social environment. 

As far as the characters go, Eliza's personality and intelligence does fit with her age of 12, and she is relatable to how I was at that age. Even at 12 years old Eliza could see wrongdoing and injustice in her world. Eliza reminds me of myself at that age, always curious, enthusiastic, and determined. The plot was not predictable, and I was surprised and satisfied at the end. Personally, I don't believe a second book is needed, but I look forward to reading it. 

I highly recommend this book!

Title: Kindled Embers (The Dryad's Cede Book 1)
Author: K.C. Simos
Publisher: K.C. Simos
Pages: 132
Series: Yes, Book 1 of 2
Rating: 5 Stars

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