Friday, September 14, 2018

Excerpt/Mini-Review/Giveaway!! Jaclyn and the Beanstalk, by Mary Ting

Welcome to the blog tour for
Jaclyn and the Beanstalk
sponsored by
I Am A Reader Blog Tours!!

For my stop, I'm featuring 
an excerpt with mini-review!
There's also a tour-wide giveaway!!


Jaclyn and the Beanstalk
Mary Ting
Trade Paperback, 276 pages
Kindle Edition, 214 pages
Vesuvian Books
September 4, 2018
Fantasy, Feminist Fiction, Romance, 
Young Adult Fiction

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.

The following mini-review is of the excerpt below, and not of the entire book. I do this only if I find a book entirely fascinating, such as this one!

The plot of this book is not only fascinating, but, of course, exciting! I LOVE the idea of a female version of Jack, the hero of the famous story, "Jack and the Beanstalk". 

The excerpt below shows us readers just what kind of character Jaclyn is. She's afraid of these monsters, true, but she confronts her fear in order to save her father. She has obviously sneaked into a meeting unobserved, a meeting meant only for the men of her village. But Jaclyn wants to have a part in whatever is being planned to help protect the villagers. So she's not sitting on sidelines or cowering in fear. Not her! She wants to be right in the middle of the all the action! I LOVE reading books with strong female protagonists, so this one will soon join my collection!

The men slapping Father on the shoulder one by one signaled time to leave. That night I heard a side of Father I’d never known. My respect for him rose even greater. He was well known by his former townspeople. He protected them, served them, and cared about them.

The men spoke to Father with reverence, at least the older ones with whom he had a kinship. None of them would have been there late into the night if they hadn’t sought his advice.

But the beasts—they were real whether the men believed or not. I believed because Father said they were, and I’d heard their cries for months.

The monsters’ wails had first invaded my mind the day I turned sixteen. How many heard their cries at night like me and never told a soul, afraid to be cast out of their village or burned for a heretic?

A silent, deadly chill took hold of every bone and muscle. Small wonder he had not liked my monster tale the previous night.

When Father flung the barn door open, I had no time to think but run back home. Who knew what kind of scolding I would receive if I were caught? I had seen no women at the meeting, let alone children.

Water descended in gleaming silver drops from the night sky, a gentle kiss on my face. I tightened my coverlet and ran against the frigid wind as fast as my legs would carry me.

Boots pounded against the wet dirt as the rain poured heavier and thicker on the spongy Earth. My face went numb, and then my body, not just from the savage cold, but from my thoughts. 

They are real … real. Taller than life … claws like a beast … teeth as sharp as knives.

I reached home with speed I never knew I had. Panting and desperate for air, I slipped inside quietly and walked with careful steps so as not to disturb Mother. Then I threw my coverlet across the bed and scooted under the damp blanket.

My hammering heart slowed to a steadier beat but refused to calm. I had discovered much through the crack in the wall. Having early chores in the morning, I closed my eyes for sleep, shivering, but sleep would not come.

Thoughts of monsters took hold of my mind. 

They are real.

Purchase Links

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal 
Cash Giveaway
Ends 9/27/18 

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed, and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. The giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

 International bestselling/award-winning author Mary Ting/M. Clarke resides in Southern California with her husband and two children. She enjoys oil painting and making jewelry. Writing her first novel, Crossroads Saga, happened by chance. It was a way to grieve the death of her beloved grandmother, and inspired by a dream she once had as a young girl. When she started reading new adult novels, she fell in love with the genre. It was the reason she had to write one -- Something Great. She also tours with The Magic Johnson Foundation to promote literacy and her children’s chapter book -- No Bullies Allowed.

To acess the complete tour schedule, just click on the banner below!


  1. This seems like a fun and amusing premise. I like the plot description and I like the excerpt. It makes me curious about the monsters. Horrific cries in the night are very effective plot device!

    1. Hi, Brian!

      Oh, for sure!! I LOVE the plot, because it also includes romance!! And the fact that Jaclyn works together with Jack, her childhood friend, is a TREAT!

      I don't much like the part about the monsters, but heck, every hero or heroine has to deal with such creatures. I just hope the author doesn't go into overly gory descriptions or a lot of violence. I would hate for this to turn out to be too much like a horror novel!

      I'm going to get the e-book copy to see how I like it. If I totally LOVE the book, then I'll get the paperback, too!!

      Thanks for the nice comment!! <3 :)

  2. Genderbended stories, especially if they are fairy tale retellings are the actual best!

    1. Hi, Steph!

      Yup! Totally agree!! And I think it's mostly fairy tale retellings that feature such stories. I wish they were more prevalent in more mainstream fiction, although, to be honest, I don't read much of that. Lol.

      Thanks for the great comment!! HUGS!! <3 <3 :) :)


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