Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Review- Cascade by Lisa T. Bergren

Last week I got a really nice email from a super groovy book-promoter asking if I would review Cascade, Book Two in Lisa T. Bergren’s River of Time series. I yawned, flipped through some old emails, then thought, “Oh, sure. Why not.” and emailed her back that I would be glad to review this novel… if I could fit it in between naps.

As if.

For anyone who read my review of Waterfall (Book One in this series), your sarcasmometer probably just started squawking because you know that the exact opposite thing occurred. In truth, when I received this particular review request, I squealed very loudly and about peed myself.

And I’m not ashamed to admit it, either.

I loved WATERFALL – and, since I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the sequel, I wasted no time replying to the groovy book-promoter. I typed my very professional version of a “YES! YES! YES!” response as fast as my fingers would fly and, although, I received the book too late in the evening to start it, I read CASCADE in its entirety the following day. And I’ve got one word to say:



Cascade takes off right where Waterfall left off (if you haven’t read Book One of the River of Time series, what are you waiting for??? In the meantime, please see my review of Waterfall for those details!) Seventeen-year-old Gabi Betarrini and her fifteen-year-old sister, Lia, are back where their adventure began. Still dressed in the silken gowns in which they’d been attired in Medieval Italy, they are at their mother’s modern-day archaeological dig amidst Italy’s Etruscan tombs. There’s just one problem: Gabi left her heart in Medieval Italy and she can’t stay in the present– not when Marcello, the young knight she loves, remains in danger.

Convincing their inquisitive, scientific mother to travel back in time with them is difficult, but the story doesn’t linger in the present long. When the three Betarrini women arrive back in Medieval Italy, Gabi and Lia find their fame has grown, their names are at the top of the enemy’s Most Wanted list, and that they are faced with the challenge of figuring out which enemies are masquerading as friends – and which enemies could be friends in disguise… or not.

It’s a lot for a pair of teenagers to deal with, but with swords, bows, and a couple of hunky Italian knights at their side, they might just make it out alive.


Like an arrow as it’s fired through the strings of a harp and into the heart of someone threatening a person I love.

In other words, Ms. Bergren was true to her characters voices, true to the emotion of each moment, and true to the violent nature of the times. But through it all she captured the essence of the romance(s) within the story with beauty and finesse.


"Oh no you didn’t!” Another cliffhanger at the end?
And Torrent won’t be released until September?????
Lisa, you’re killing me here!!!!
(In a good way.)


I love this series. I adore it. And so does my (almost) fourteen-year-old daughter. Lisa T. Bergren is setting the bar for teen Christian Romance, writing this ongoing tale so well that it could cross seamlessly onto Mainstream bookshelves. And I hope it does. Even if you scoff at something written for teens, you will love it. And you will salivate along with me for the release of Torrent in September.

So what are you waiting for? Read Cascade, by Lisa T. Bergren as soon as you can get your hands on it. (But read Waterfall first, of course, if you haven’t yet!!! These are not stand-alone titles!)

Read it. READ IT. READ IT!!!

“No, there is too much. Let me sum up.”

This series is humorous, romantic, and packed with surprising twists of action which keep the reader glued to the page. As a bonus, it is a Christian novel -- but the writing is so refreshingly preach-less that Christian teens (and grown-ups!) don’t have to grimace as they hand it to their non-believing friends. Brava!

Cascade, by Lisa T. Bergren is a fantastic, engrossing tale of adventure and love that will have your knuckles whitening, your face grinning, and your heart singing a soft Italian love song long after the final (cliffhanging!) page is turned.

Serena's rating:

Reviewed by contributor Serena Chase
Follow Serena Chase on Twitter @Serena_Chase


  1. Love it, Joy! Can't wait to receive my copy and dive in. My 13 year old loved Waterfall, too, so it might be a free for all at the mailbox when it arrives :)

  2. Ha, just realised Serena wrote the review :)

    Have you read them, Joy?

  3. "I squealed very loudly and about peed myself." Best reaction ever. This blog is bad for my budget because I hear about all these awesome books that I want to buy. I'll just have to pace myself. Thanks for the review.

  4. @Rel- I'm about four chapters into Waterfall right now and I'm loving it. I've got Cascade waiting for me right behind it. I think I'm going to do a readathon this weekend and finish them both.

    @Kacie- Don't you love Serena's reviews? She cracks me up.

  5. Great minds read alike? I reviewed Cascade today, as well.
    I loved them both & can hardly wait for the next one!!

  6. Serena, okay. So you made my day. My week, even. I laughed, I cried, but thankfully, I didn't pee my pants. Thanks for the love!

  7. Thanks all for your sweet words!

  8. Oh and I should mention thanks to Wyn Wyn Media for the review copies and we'll be doing a giveaway for this book next month!

  9. YES! Thanks, Jeane at WynnWynn Media!


  10. Excellent review, Joy! I'm going to pick up the first and second books in this series for reading by the pool this summer.

  11. Serena you are hilarious! I loooooved your intro, and you totally sum up the book well too. This most certainly raises the bar for Christian fiction, and I love that Lisa can have Gabi reference it as a struggle and not outright fall-to-her-knees devotion. It makes Gabi more real (to me, anyway). Great point!


I love comments more than Starbucks! Thanks for leaving one!


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