Quartz, Topaz, Emerald, and Fairy Crosses!!

Quartz, Topaz, Emerald, and Fairy Crosses!!

I went rock hunting with my brother and niece recently. We found lots of great rocks and I thought I’d share a few of them. First is a nice piece of quartz (I like to call them pencil quartz but this would be a BIG pencil!). The rusty color is internal to the rock, which is pretty cool! I think I’ll try to polish it a bit, but don’t really plan on changing it much. I like the way it looks!

Quartz

 

The second find of the day was a great piece of topaz. The topaz we find is usually clear or maybe has just a touch of blue in it. As you may have read in previous gemstone posts, topaz’s blue color can come from heat and exposure to radiation. North Georgia ‘s mountains have a lot of granite (which may contain trace radioactive elements). I think I’ll play around with a smaller piece of topaz and a butane torch to see if I can get color enhancement. If so, maybe I’ll try it on this piece. At 168.4 carats, I don’t want to damage it.

 

The last find I want to share is this great piece of moonstone (I think). I love the orange colors and I believe it will make a great cabochon. I’ll cut a slab or two off it and see if I can get it to shine. I’ll post pictures and let you know how it works out.

In addition to the ones I found, I ordered a bag of chiastolite fairy crosses and staurolite fairy crosses (these came from Fannin County Georgia). If you recall from The Gemstone Chronicles Book One: The Carnelian, the elf Findecano was trapped in a chiastolite fairy cross, so I had to get me at least one. And Aidan found a bunch of staurolite fairy crosses before Maggie found Findecano’s prison. Given how important fairy crosses are to the books, I just had to have some.

Quartz

The last picture I wanted to share with you is this emerald. I found this one a while back and want to take it to my friend for him to examine and cut for me. This one is about 16 carats, but it has a great green color and I hope he’ll be able to create a beautiful stone from it!

I’ll be heading out for another rock hunting excursion soon. If I find some noteworthy specimens, I’ll be sure to post pictures. In the meantime, check out the blog for other gemstone posts and subscribe so you don’t miss any updates. Connect with me on social media, too! I’m on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblr, and Pinterest! I look forward to meeting new friends!!

Dragon Dreams by Dusty Lynn Holloway – My Review!!

Dragon Dreams – My review!!

Dragon Dreams Cover

 

It’s hard to believe 2017 is almost here. That means my final review for 2016 will be for Dragon Dreams (The Chronicles of Shadow and Light Book 1) by Dusty Lynn Holloway. Read on to find out what I thought about this fantasy novel!

Synopsis (from the author): A prophecy of murder.

An elf hunted by dragons.

One man who risks everything to save her.

Nachal is a human that should not be having prophetic Dragon Dreams. But he does. Every night he dreams of an elf running through flames, trying in vain to outrun the Rebel Dragon Obsidian. Every night he sees her fall. Sees her eyes close. Feels her heart as it slows, and then stops. Every night, through the connection of the dream, he dies with her. It’s a spiral that he can’t control, and it’s slowly driving him insane.

Auri is an elf raised by a powerful human king not of her own blood. Left behind by the mother who perished far from the elven isle El`dell, she seeks to forge her life among the humans. Her journey takes her to the land of her heritage. To a place that holds both a haunting betrayal, and a miracle that just might save her life.

Together, they become embroiled in a conspiracy where destinies are intertwined, love is born in the fallout of ultimate sacrifice, and the only path to victory lies through the searing flames of dragon fire.

What I liked: Dragon Dreams has all the fantasy elements! Dragons, elves, a grumpy dwarf, romance, an epic quest, and the fate of a world in the balance make the story entertaining. I enjoy Nachal’s tormented character, Auri’s character is an interesting blend of human-raised elf and heroine-to-be, and the dwarf is the perfect foil to Nachal. Add Liran the Watcher (another elf) to the mix and the plot thickens. All this against the backdrop of the looming war with Obsidian and his forces. Plenty to keep me reading!

What I didn’t like: Dragon Dreams dragged in places, and the romantic interaction between Auri and Liran, and Auri and Nachal muddies the story. I think a little more backstory could help the book, too.

Overall impression: Dragon Dreams is a good start to the Chronicles of Shadow and Light series. Good characters, an interesting plot, a couple of surprise revelations, and the beginning of an epic adventure makes this a book to read!

My rating: 4 Stars

Connect with the author:

Interested in reading Dragon Dreams or the rest of the Chronicles of Shadow and Light? Find out more about the series and Dusty Lynn Holloway on her Amazon Author page or her blog! And don’t forget to leave a review when you finish!

Connect with me:

Thanks for spending part of your 2016 with me. I hope my reviews helped readers find new authors and books. I’ll continue in 2017, so stay tuned (and subscribe to the blog so you don’t miss a post). If you are so inclined, find me on the socials and let’s connect! I’m on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google+, Pinterest, and Tumblr. Or just email me at bill@williamlstuart.com! Happy New Year!!!