Blaze of Glory
Some fires can consume you.
Last year, I had it all. Two jumpers on the show circuit, a lot of wins, and a lot of attention - the good kind. But now I have nothing. My life is circling the drain. The only spark of light that exists for me is my new, forbidden passion. If my stepfather finds out, he will kill me. My twin brother, my only blood relative in the world, has already begged me not to. But I can't help myself. If it can't be horses, it has to be this...
"Blaze of Glory grabbed my attention from the start holding on tight, until I finished the very last page. The writer has a way of so vividly describing so many emotions with her words. I could feel them in the depths of my soul, with each turn of the page.
I have NEVER read a book that moved me to tears, not just once, but at least at 3 different intervals. It was amazing to read a story like this, and have my heart aching, stomach with butterflies, and soul touched so deeply.
As soon as I was finished reading the story, my 1st thought was, I wanted everyone I knew to read this Book immediately, so we could discuss it. I knew no one would understand the depth of emotions I was feeling without reading for themselves!
My 2nd thought was, how awesome a movie it would make, but the lead actors/actresses would have to be astounding to be able to portray the true emotions the author so fluently used in telling her story.
** I do not want to give any in depth information about the story to ruin it for any one person that loves a good book.**
If you are a book lover, and even if you're not, THIS IS A MUST READ! I can't say it enough! If I could I would scream it from the rooftops!"
- Julie Backes, Empty Nester Reviews
"If you're the kind of nerd who rewards yourself with a good book and a nice spot on the couch after a hectic work week, get ready to fire up your Kindle. Proceed immediately to Amazon.com and download Blaze of Glory, by M. Garzon. Do not be swayed by the conventional title, the Young Adult label, or the very young child on the cover who has nothing at all to do with the actual story. Thanks to Horse Junkies United, On the Line discovered an addicting guilty pleasure of a novel last week with a level of steam and scandal that is way over the top -and oh so enjoyable to read. Add in the hunter/jumper circuit, high goal polo, The Royal Horse Show, and (everyone's favorite) barn drama, and a novel doesn't get much better than this for horsepeople of many age groups.
Meet Tea, a headstrong 17-year-old girl who is a very talented jumper rider and hardworking riding coach. She helps run her stepfather's Canadian boarding and training facility while engaging in all the typical teenage pastimes - party drugs, sex, alcohol, and many other curfew-breaking types of rebellion. She's a talented rider but when tragedy strikes early on in the book, her downward spiral kicks off the kind of teenage behavior that makes the reader relate to her, root for her, and even be a little disgusted in her. But, being an attractive and intelligent teenage girl, a romantic storyline is inevitable, and although this particular tale is laced with family secrets, an element of abuse and quite the secret scandal, it all makes for a great page-turner, and easily tops other horse-themed fiction novels recently reviewed on this blog. Where The A-Circuit played it safe and stuck its little pinky toe into the sordid waters of drugs, young love, and the moneyed equestrian world we love to hate, Blaze of Glory takes a big old swan dive into those depths, stays awhile, and lets all the ignominy soak deep into its pages.
There is no one-dimensional writing in this book. Author m. garzon knows how to reach inside her reader's head and carry them along with her characters' emotional highs and lows. She writes with the ease of someone who understands the way horses think and feel. This is her first novel and my hat's off to her. So what are you waiting for? Jump on into this book."
- Erin Gilmore, Sidelines Magazine
"Blaze of Glory is one of those books that you just can't put down… Think Twlight crossed with Horse Whisperer and with a splash of Harlequin romance thrown in… I consider myself somewhat of a literary snob, priding myself on a thoughtful and meditative approach to reading books. I like to trudge through all the classic tomes often just to say I did so. There was no trudging through this book, though. In fact, so engrossed was I in the characters that I was surreptitiously reading it on my iPhone during class, trying to flip pages on the sly.
The main character, Tea, is at once likable and frustrating. Her impulsive decisions caused me to cringe sometimes, as I felt keenly aware of the repercussions she was sure to meet! The trait of Tea's that comes across most strongly, though, is her passion for riding (and later, her passion for a certain boy…). The riding scenes are admirably accurate, the equestrian background, clearly written by somehow to whom the information is innate, as opposed to researched on the fly as filler. Yet the book doesn't stoop to the level of brand-dropping, a habit which quickly dates a book and is all too common in young adult fiction today. Looking forward to the sequel."
"On occasion you start reading a book by a new author and you instantly know that you have just stumbled upon greatness. That is exactly what happened when I picked up Blaze of Glory by M. Garzon. Much like Sara Gruen in Water for Elephants, Garzon hooks the reader from the very beginning and doesn't let go until the last page. Her writing style is smooth, vividly descriptive, and easy to get lost in. Her characters are rich, well rounded, and she makes you feel as if you intimately know them.
There is an optimistic sentiment through the entire book for the characters to come out on top. You find yourself hoping that this family recovers from the personal trouble that they each face, and that they can begin to heal and grow as a family.
You don't need to be a horse enthusiast to enjoy this book. The constant undertow is a developing love story that is attractive to both the older teenager and the adult audience. This novel moves at an effortless pace that will have you curled up in your favorite chair reading well into the evening hours. This being Garzon's first novel, I can't wait to see what is next. One thing I know for sure is that this is a new author who is going to take the literary world by storm!"
- Emily Browning, SheWhoLovesDogs
"I absolutely LOVED this book. The characters are very well-written and complex. They have subtleties to them that are not always evident in young adult novels. You can see yourself in Tea's shoes and you can understand why she does what she does, no matter the consequences. She provides a strong independent character that teenage girls can look up to. Jaden is more than just the sexy male lead, he has great depth and morals. He is so easy to fall in love with that you can definitely understand why Tea is having such a hard time trying to stay away.
Any teenage girl would love this book, that I am absolutely sure. What surprised me was the fact that as a married woman and mother, I was just as enthralled as any teenager. During one of the juicer scenes I actually caught myself with my nose almost pressed up to the computer screen!
To me, Blaze of Glory is not just a "horse" book, it is a wonderful, romantic, intriguing story taking place in a horse setting. You do not need to know anything about horses to enjoy this book. I know next to nothing about the horse competition world and it did not affect my enjoyment one bit. All of the horse references are clearly explained and intertwined seamlessly throughout the book."
- Kristen Bobbitt, Baby Giveaways Galore
"Have you ever had a book you couldn't stop reading because you had to know what happened next? This was one of those books for me! The relationships were amazingly written and make the reader feel as though they have a part in them. I felt as though I was part of Tea and her life. She became my best friend. I wanted to beat the crap out of her stepfather many times and wanted more than anything to see her and Jaden end up together.
The characters are well written and come alive in the pages. You want to be their friends. Any book that makes you forget it is a fictional story and you can't go down the street and visit the characters is an A+ in my book. The scenes are described to the point you can see yourself there. Altogether great writing by M. Garzon.
I wouldn't say this book is only for teenagers. I enjoyed it so much I'd have sworn it was in fact written for adults. The author struck gold with this book. Move over Stephenie Meyer there's a new YA author on the block. There may be no vampires or werewolves, just reality at its best. Way to go M. Garzon you have officially made it onto my top authors list! I can't wait to read a lot more books by you."
- Stephanie Barmann, Mother of Insanity
"I absolutely fell in love with this book, Blaze of Glory by M. Garzon. It's very hard to put this book down when you start reading it, in fact it took me only 4 days! I loved how easy it was to get to know the horses and this book has a very exciting plot the whole way through. Full of emotions, I found myself laughing and crying and grinning through much of this story. You have to read this book today!!!!"
- Ellen Ross, Ask Away
"Growing up with horses and working with them from a very young age I was totally captivated by this story. I could see everything that was happening as if I was there. The sign of a truly great novel and writer. I couldn't help myself, I was staying up late to read this book, my eyes were heavy from the day I'd jammed packed with fun things for my children and the nights, the nights were all about me and Tea, Seth, Jaden and Dec and the rest of the family too. You can tell by the way M. Garzon writes that she has experience with and love for horses. And that experience has enabled her to give us the great deal of detail that has gone into this novel about life at the stable, the show. The details of the characters is great, makes you feel like you really know them, all things put together make this an incredible story. I quite enjoyed it but it will be a few years before I let my daughter read it. Remember, when you buy this book you will need to find a nice spot and have a lot of time to read it, because trust me you will not want to put this down once you start reading it. I know that I didn't. I couldn't get enough of the story, you can really get lost in it. Until I lost my iPod I was reading it long into the wee hours of the morning. Luckily, I found it and was able to get right back in there. Entangled in the web of forbidden passion, the intense feelings beaming from the pages of the book. It's hard not to get lost in such an amazing story. I love it."
- Sally Payette, Silkki's Reviews
"From the beginning, I was drawn in to the story. The author is an excellent writer--I was impressed with her vocabulary, characterization, and wit. I absolutely loved Tea from the beginning, and my heart cried for her as she had to go through very realistic tragedies. I always appreciate it when authors put in tragedies, as hard as they are to read. And there is one towards the beginning of the story that will jolt the reader--it sure did me!
I figured I knew what would happen between Tea and Jaden (no spoilers!), but the story of those two was what made me read more than half of the book in just a few days. I honestly could not put it down! And then ending was exactly what it should have been. In fact, the second half of the book was mesmerizing. I like a good romance, and this book certainly lived up to that and more."
- Ruth Hill, My Devotional Thoughts
"At first I wasn't sure I was going to like this book. I'm not particularly into horses. But while the book does kind of revolve around them, it was not enough to bore me by any means. By the time I got halfway through this book, I could not put it down and by the time I was a couple chapters from the end I was wishing that it never had to end! Does anyone else get like that? The book is just so good you want to jump inside the story and never leave it? That's how I felt with this book. ...I will not be mentioning the other passion. All I have to say is once it shows up near the second part of the book the story just completely consumes you. I had my eyes glued to the computer screen for several hours and did not want to deal with anyone who was trying to talk to me.
Seriously this was one of the best books I have read this year - and if you frequent my blog you know that I read a LOT of books."
- Katie Wanta, ConcertKatie.com
"Some authors or critics say that a book they wrote or read was "full of action from cover to cover". If you have read books like that, you may have found that occasionally they lie. Some books start off slow and boring, with continued promises of future adrenaline-pumping adventures, but it seems like it takes so long to get to anything remotely interesting. Well, I can truthfully say that Blaze of Glory is thrilling from chapter one.
In this romance novel, the main character Tea takes you on a tear inducing, heart grabbing journey that will have you following her every move. You'll feel as though you're right there watching it as though it's happening in real life right before your eyes. I couldn't wait to find out what happened on the next page, but hated to finish the one I was on because I knew I was that much closer to the end.
M. Garzon is certainly a talented author. As an avid reader, it's always a real treat to find a book that I can actually lose myself in. I would recommend Blaze of Glory to anyone who enjoys a good drama soaked romance. This story is just fantastic. It ventures places where most authors don't dare go, yet doesn't go too far. The characters will bring to life many different emotions and thoughts. You won't be able to put it down until the very end. Every page is just as exciting as the last."
- 17-year-old guest blogger, realadventuresfromamomof3
"An entertaining mixture of drama and equine action."
- Publishers Weekly
"Blaze of Glory is a wonderful young adult romance with horses, teen angst, drama, and more. A well-written and enthralling novel - I can't wait to see what rising star M. Garzon has in store next!"
- Wendy Hines, Minding Spot
"This isn't just a horse book. It's a great read about life and love."
- Jerri Reason, momecentric.com