Guest Review…by IRL BFF Tracy :)

I am so happy to have my dear, dear friend Tracy finally post a review for me!  It is so good to know that her teenage daughter got her sucked in to this magnificent series!  You go M! :)  I really appreciate her taking the time to write this review of these two books for my site!  Thanks so much T!  XOXOXO

So here you go…Tracy’s debut review….

A Novel by Lisa Mangum, actually two novels, well really three but we will get into that later. I found myself devouring the first novel just so I could see what was going to come about in the second novel only to discover I HAVE to read a third. Sheesh, the way Lisa Mangum draws you in is crazy.

I started reading the first book titled The Hourglass Door. Although the Cover is not what drew me to the books in the first place I can see a bit of symbolism in the cover and its design. I think I would have liked to have seen more of an hourglass shape in the door that is on the cover. Did I just repeat myself? Moving on! The real reason I started reading the books was and is still the same, and I am happy to say it is appropriate for my 12 and 14 year olds to read. The other reason I even picked up the books is due in part to my getting the second book in a drawing while I was shopping at the bookstore. I was ready to check out when my name was called and I had won the second book titled The Golden Spiral. I love being a winner of anything even if it is a teenage appropriate book. My girls were with me at the time of my winning and my 14 year old chimed in with Ooooh I just saw those books, followed with “Mom, you really need to get the first book too.” “Really? Do I have to?” was my reply. I was already going to be spending enough money at the bookstore and now more. I retreated after I received the puppy dog look and then the big grin, “Fine” was my reply. And so a few minutes later I had in hand not one but two books in a two part series or so I thought.

The Hourglass Door is a fantastic read. I love Abby and her role in this book. She brings life to a lot of the book as the main character. She is into “living life without limits” as they say at Emery College. The college Abby would like to attend but that her friends and family know nothing about as they think she is interested in going to USC. Abby has a desire to see more in her life and her current boyfriend is predictable. She wants some spontaneity in her life. Cue gorgeous Italian exchange student walking into class. Abby can’t take her eyes off of him. Tall, dark and handsome would be the way to describe Dante. What woman doesn’t want tall, dark and handsome? Now Abby has something a little more exciting in her life and she has been assigned to help get Dante up to speed in the class. Poor Abby having to suffer like that, what is a girl to do?  She soon discovers things are pretty electric when ever she is near Dante and listening to him recite poetry tends to put her in dream land. I reiterate, tall, dark, and handsome with an Italian accent reciting poetry. What’s not to love? This is a sweet romance of two souls that were made for each other.

It did not take me long to finish The Hourglass Door only to turn around and pick up The Golden Spiral because I had to know the rest of the story. I began reading the second book and I’m pretty sure I finished that one even faster than the first. I wanted to know more about Abby, Dante, Jason, and Valerie. Jason is Abby’s ex-boyfriend you know the one before they cued the gorgeous Italian, Dante and Valerie is one of her best friends who needs her help. They say a picture is worth a thousand words and the way that everything is described in this series of books right down to how the air felt around Abby was the most mesmerizing and intoxicating world I was glad to be a part of by my ability to read. Lisa Mangum can describe things down to the smallest detail that it really makes you conjure up a vision in you mind of what it was like to be Abby. It was like you were in the scene and it was playing out before you. I felt like I was standing by the wayside watching these people in front of me. When I arrived at the last chapter of the Golden Spiral I turned the page thinking there would be another chapter. Instead I found the acknowledgements. I read through the acknowledgments thinking to myself the entire time this can’t be the end I want to know more. Why would you leave me sitting there wanting more and then I got to the last page in the book that said “The story of Abby and Dante concludes in The Forgotten Locket. Coming Summer 2011” What? Did I read that right? I read that again, I have to wait till the summer to read the next part of the series. I can’t wait that long. I read the last paragraph in The Golden Spiral again trying to savor it. Had I known this would be the end I might have read a little slower to make sure I got it all and to make sure I savored every last morsel of writing I could squeeze into my brain. Curse you Lisa Magnum for making me wait 3-5 months for the next book to come out. The page said summer 2011, so in my mind I’m thinking June 20th since that’s the first day of summer but what if Lisa decides to wait until the end of summer or the middle of summer. What will I do? What’ll I do? Well I know what I will do in the meantime. I will try to be patient and I know I will find myself reading the series again as it gets closer to summer. Great job Lisa on keeping me longing for more, but if Abby has indeed forgotten the locket and therefore does not have the key she needs that is not what I wanted to know as I sit and wait for your next book in the series to come out. Just saying.



  1. Tracy -

    Cici, Thank you so much for allowing me to write a review on your site. It was so much fun. You are a rock star writer! TREW Dat yo! 😀

  2. Cici -

    It was my pleasure and I certainly appreciate your willingness to do it! Thank you very much for the nice compliment…you a’ight!

  3. Tracy -

    Wahoo! I didn’t have to wait all summer long to get the third book in the series. I recieved the final book in the trilogy, yesterday. My honey brought the brown package to me right after the mailman left it on the doorstep. I ripped it open like it was Christmas. I oohed and aahed over the cover smiling ear to ear as I thought about reading more about Dante and Abby. I was even thinking of Zo and what a great villian he is. My honey just stared and asked what I was holding. Couldn’t he see I had a book in my hand (silly man)….not just any book though I had the Forgotten Locket. It was the Holy Grail to me at that moment. I didn’t start reading it right away, even though I wanted to. I had to wait until my darling honey left for work, so I could have my time to read without being disturbed. That was a long hour and a half. I mean really how long does it take to eat a stinkin sandwich and some chips. Sheesh! Instead, I began reading this morning, thinking I was safe to begin and not be disturbed. I was wrong. My DH pops in the room and asks, “Are you going to sit around all day reading THAT book?” I didn’t even hear him the first time. It wasn’t until he said it again and stood there looking at me huffing that I acknowledged him with, “What?” (As I sat next to the pile of unfolded clothes on the sofa). He made the comment again. To which I replied, “Well not all day but a good portion of it or until I have to leave.” Followed by a big grin. So there I sat in a mound of clothes reading my Holy Grail. OMG so far so great. I’ll keep you posted as I get farter into it.

  4. Cici -

    I am glad you got it! Doesn’t he know your happiness and contentment trumps laundry and household duties? Silly man! I know you will be writing me a great review when you are done right? 😉 Looking forward to it!!

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