Friday, February 21, 2014

Charis ... Journey to Pandora's Jar ~ Nicole Y. Walters ~ Bridging the Gap Blog Tour ~ Review ~ Excerpt

Journey to Pandora's Jar
By Nicole Y. Walters


 Thirteen-year-old Charis Parks has five days to save mankind. What she thought was mere mythology has become her reality … she alone must reverse the curse of Pandora’s Jar. If Charis is to fulfill her destiny, she has to face her fears against the darker forces of Hades and the blood-thirsty Erinyes Sisters who help him. Together with the gods and her best friend Gabe, Charis takes a fantastic journey to Pandora’s Jar where she must release the only spirit that remains trapped inside – the spirit of Hope. Or else …

Charis’s sleep were pretty much the same every night. For the past couple of weeks, as soon as she
closed her eyes they’d begin. She found herself standing in a great, golden room, so big that every sound she made echoed and bounced off the walls. When the dreams first started, she’d yell “Hey” or “Anybody there?” just because she got a kick out of hearing it over and over again. Now, she couldn’t wait to get this part of the dream over with to see if maybe, just maybe, she could finally get to the
dream’s end.
Eventually, her feet—pointed and with her nails painted a soft
blue—would float above the smooth, marble surface beneath them
as she drifted down the familiar hall. Floods of opaque, yellow light
came from everywhere, including her own skin, and filled the halls
of what Charis had come to believe was a palace or museum of some
sort. She’d squint her eyes as she studied her illuminated hands,
arms, and feet, intrigued.
Charis would continue floating down the wide corridor toward
somewhere she suspected was important. On the way, she’d stop to
admire the paintings that decorated the shining walls. They were
unlike anything she’d ever seen in real life. These paintings were
animated and absolutely alive with color and movement; each
brushstroke contained a measure of magic. From within beautiful
gilded frames, the crashing waves of the ocean sprayed the girl with
salt water, roaring lions in caves startled her as she drifted by, and
instruments played music from invisible hands that she danced to
with an equally invisible partner.
Charis loved all of the paintings, but her favorites were the
portraits. The proud man with the curly hair man was the most
handsome fellow Charis had ever seen, but she didn’t blush until she
happened upon the kissing lovers whose passion she found
shocking. And, even though she knew none of this was real, Charis’s
eyes welled with tears gazing upon the wounded warrior staring
helplessly back at her from a bloodied battlefield. These were just a
few of the many curious portraits lining the walls.
As Charis watched, the men and women in the pictures attempted
to talk with her. Try as she might, she couldn’t understand a word
they said. For all of their babble, they may as well have been the
bleating sheep or singing birds from the other paintings. Still, they
did their best to communicate. What, Charis couldn’t tell. Some
threw her flowers and danced and bowed in her presence as though
she were a god or they her royal subjects. Others, characters of the
darker sort, hissed at her and yelled what Charis guessed were curses.
She didn’t like them.
It wasn’t long before all of the portraits yelled together and got
louder and louder until Charis couldn’t take it anymore. “Calm
down,” she’d say, but they just kept right on yelling and making her
nervous. It was usually then—with her hands over her ears to mute
the noise—that Charis woke up, tired, groggy, and a little confused,
just like this morning.

Author Bio:
Nicole Y. Walters lives in Seattle with her husband.  She has two grown sons, good boys, who call their momma regularly.  Nicole loves a great many things in life . . . green apples with almond butter, the smell of puppy breath, and the feel of the words "I love you."  She also thinks writing is pretty cool too.  Charis: Journey to Pandora's Jar, is her first novel, and it was a joy for her to write every word.  Inspired by Nicole's own life's journey, Charis: Journey to Pandora's Jar is a book about friendship, faith, courage, and the power of one and all.  Most of all, it's a book about the compelling promise of hope.

Author contact:



I have to admit that I was a little unsure before I started this book. It is not normally something I would pick up to read. However, once I started reading Charis: Journey to Pandora's Jar, I was HOOKED! I had a hard time putting the book down. There are so many mysteries and drama that I could not imagine what was going to happen next! 

Charis appears to have a normal life for 13 year old girl. She has a warm loving family, friends that are beyond true, and middle school with all it's drama. Her special birthmark has always intrigued her but she doesn't know why. When she starts having strange dreams she is a little worried about what is happening. When she starts receiving visits from the Gods, she is certainly intrigued, a little hesitant, and a little scared. 

I don't want tell you too much about this book because I do not want to spoil any of the exciting story line for you. I will tell you that I really admired Charis for all that she goes through. This is one brave girl. I also admired her friend Gabe for sticking with her, and helping her through her adventure. This young man is a true friend, even when things were a bit dangerous he was right there for Charis. 

Greek mythology intrigues me and I really enjoyed learning more about it in this book. I think anyone who enjoy Greek mythology will enjoy this story. I think middle school age children, maybe even a little younger (depending on their reading taste) all the way up to adults will enjoy this book. 

I am so glad that I stepped out of my comfort zone and choose to read this book. I found the story to be nicely written and exciting enough to keep me flipping pages very quickly. I know that I would certainly love to read more and I hope the author may be writing another book to make this a series. I would be intrigued to see what happens with Charis, her family, friends, and the Gods next. 

I was given the opportunity to read this book for this blog tour, so that I may share my thoughts with you. As always it has been my pleasure to share my thoughts with you on Charis: Journey to Pandora's Jar

1 comment:

  1. Great review! This sounds like an interesting read :)