What fate awaits a girl who hears monsters at night…
Sixteen-year-old Jaclyn looks up to her father. An honest man who once fought for the king, he now teaches Jaclyn how to use her wits—and her sword.
But he has a secret. And his secret may have a connection to the one thing Jaclyn is hiding from him.
Upon hearing “monsters” are terrorizing the small villages around Black Mountain, Jaclyn’s father and his friends head out to hunt them … but they don’t return.
Armed only with her sword and three magic beans—a gift from a mysterious old woman—Jaclyn sets out for Black Mountain to save her father.
On her climb, one bean drops and grows into a beanstalk, catching her when she falls.
She isn’t the only one that takes the ride. Jack, her childhood friend and secret crush, is following her.
Jaclyn and Jack will have to work together to save not only their fathers, but the townspeople the beasts plan to lay waste to before it’s too late.
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Jaclyn and the Beanstalk was my first book by Mary Ting, but it will not be my last! A very enjoyable adventure with excellent pacing and character development. When we meet Jaclyn, she is a very sweet and devoted daughter. While she seems content to live with her mother and father in an isolated area, we also see her longing for adventure. That opportunity comes when she overhears her father and some men talking about monsters they must battle. In a form of mild rebellion, Jaclyn follows the men and this leads to the main part of the story where we learn what the men are facing. I'll stop there to avoid giving anything away, but this story surprised me with its very original plot twists to the Jack and the Beanstalk tale. I loved Jaclyn as a character, and Jack, her childhood friend, was the perfect counterpart to her, bringing flirtation and humor. Probably my favorite part of this book was the strong message of courage, faith and forgiveness, very valuable lessons in our modern culture of casting blame and ostracizing others. This book is a clean read and suitable for young teens through adults. I give it a solid four stars and recommend it to those who love adventure books and fairytale retellings.
I asked Mary what her top 10 fairytale favorites were, and this is what she shared:
Top 10 favorite fairytales
Mary Ting is an international bestselling, award-winning author. She writes soulful, spellbinding stories that excite the imagination and captivate readers around the world. Her books span a wide range of genres, and her storytelling talents have earned a devoted legion of fans, as well as garnered critical praise.
Becoming an author happened by chance. It was a way to grieve the death of her beloved grandmother, and inspired by a dream she had in high school. After realizing she wanted to become a full-time author, Mary retired from teaching after twenty years. She also had the privilege of touring with the Magic Johnson Foundation to promote literacy and her children’s chapter book: No Bullies Allowed.
Mary resides in Southern California with her husband, two children, and two little dogs, Mochi and Mocha. She enjoys oil painting and making jewelry. Being a huge Twilight fan, Mary was inspired to make book-themed jewelry and occasionally gives it away as prizes to her fans. Visit her at http://www.tangledtalesofting.com/
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