Guest Post on the Importance of Mentors by Author Jen Greyson + Giveaway

Today I’d like to welcome Jen Greyson, author of the totally spectacular Lightning Rider. This one absolutely pulled me in and swept me away–or maybe I should say stormed in and took me under? Read my review and you’ll see just what I mean.

Lightning Rider large blog tour button

A huge thank you to Marlene here at Reading Reality for letting me visit (can I get a huge round of applause for librarians everywhere?)

With my first book coming out, I’ve had the opportunity to reflect on what got me here, and the points that stand out have all dealt with my mentors along the way, so I wanted to talk about the . . .

Importance of Mentors by Jen Greyson

I’m an eclectic. In every aspect of my life. My resume looks like those paintings where the artist throws random splashes of color on a canvas–the end result is passionate and beautiful, but it’s messy in the creating. I used to say my erratic work history made me a journeyman. Once I started writing, I realized it was fodder for my stories.

Because I have such a huge network filled with people from nearly every profession thanks to all those jobs, I’ve also been able to rely on the sea of humanity to give me mentors.

When I think of a mentor, I picture someone who has succeeded, who didn’t quit, who’s gone the extra mile to be exceptional. But when it comes to writing, my mentors aren’t all mega-accomplished writers. They’re also accountants and financial advisors and fiberglassers.

Lightning Rider by Jen GreysonSee, mentoring has to encompass every area of my life. I can’t be a writer without learning how to socialize and listen, respect deadlines and be tenacious, devote myself to my work and turn out the best possible product. Having a mentor in each of those areas gives me someone to admire and emulate, but they’ve come from every walk of life. A very blue-collar worker I know is a genius at listening and making a person feel like he’s hanging on their every word. An interaction with him makes me feel very special. I want my readers to feel that way when I meet them, so I watch the nuances of his interactions as he mentors me.

Writing is a solitary profession. I go in a room, talk to my imaginary friends for several hundred hours, and give those ramblings to other people and ask them what they think. It’s all very bizarre, if I really think about it. My daily interactions with people are pretty brief and superficial. (Not because I want them to be, but cashiers tend to want you to move along quickly and don’t care that it’s been 4 days since you’ve had an adult conversation. 🙂 Since they’re brief, I need them to be impactful and memorable, and not in a bad way. If I can make someone feel special (even in our 2 minute interaction), that’s an awesome day. But I have to work at it because socializing and listening doesn’t come naturally, I’ve had to learn and practice and improve.

Having great mentors means being a great disciple. I have to be someone they want to continue to teach. If I argue their points, or act like a jerk, I don’t imagine the mentoring would last long.

In my new book, Lightning Rider, the main character, Evy, gets bombarded by people who want to mentor her and she must choose wisely. The wrong mentor is often worse than no mentor. While the stakes in most cases aren’t ever saving-the-world-or-die-trying like they are in Evy’s, they are impactful and deserve the right mentor.

I’d love to know, do you have a mentor in your life? Is there one from the past that sticks out? Are you a mentor to others? What’s the most impactful thing you’ve learned from a mentor—or mentored to someone else?

Thanks again to Marlene and all her readers.


Jen is kindly giving away one ebook copy of Lightning Rider. To enter, use the Rafflecopter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Jen GreysonAbout Jen GreysonFrom the moment she decided on a degree in Equestrian Studies, Jen Greyson’s life has been one unscripted adventure after another. Leaving the cowboy state of Wyoming to train show horses in France, Switzerland, and Germany, she’s lived life without much of a plan, but always a book in her suitcase. Now a wife and mom to two young boys, she relies on her adventurous, passionate characters to be the risk- takers.Jen also writes university courses and corporate training material when she’s not enjoying the wilds of the west via wakeboard or snowmobile. Her new adult fantasy, Lightning Rider, comes out May 31 and features a Latina heroine with some serious superpowers.To learn more about Jen, visit her blog or follow her on Twitter, Facebook, or Goodreads.

Review: Lightning Rider by Jen Greyson

Lightning Rider by Jen GreysonFormat read: ebook provided by NetGalley
Formats available: ebook
Genre: Urban fantasy
Series: Lightning Rider, #1
Publisher: The Writer’s Coffee Shop Publishing House
Date Released: May 30, 2013
Purchasing Info: Author’s Website, Publisher’s Website, Goodreads, Barnes & Noble, Kobo

For Evy Rivera, thunderstorms have always caused her physical pain, but she’s never known why. When a record-setting storm arrives on the same night her father finds ancient ancestral documents, Evy is set aglow with mysterious tiny lightnings she can command.

Even worse, she alerts some people in the universe who’ve been looking for her family for a very long time.

Thrown back into ancient Spain and tasked with killing a Spanish legend, she must train alongside Constantine, a sexy yet obstinate Roman warrior. He teaches her how to wield her lightning as a weapon, through more errors than trials. With a relationship as explosive as their late-night training sessions, Evy and Constantine battle their push-pull relationship while trying to ignore the two-thousand-year difference in their birthdates.

Ilif Rotiart, her quasi-mentor, is appalled at Evy’s skill. He would prefer to train her father and keep Evy on the sidelines—where women belong. Evy has a feeling Ilif is keeping something from them, but she must play nice until she uncovers the truth. And if he’s lying, it will be the worst day of his four-hundred-year life.

Penya Sepadas claims she’s Evy’s rightful trainer, and she has the prophecy to prove it. Penya doesn’t share Ilif’s misogynistic attitude, but she does have her own agenda . . . and her own secrets.

Evy must sort through the lies and find the truth behind her family’s time-traveling past before the wrong history obliterates the future. She’s spent her whole life fighting for her place. Now, as the first female lightning rider, she’ll dedicate her existence to fighting to save the world.

But will Evy learn to manage her lightning and find the truth before it’s too late?

My Review:

cloud to cloud lightningLightning is magic. Haven’t we all believed that when we’ve seen the beauty and power of a storm?

For Evy Rivera, lightning really is magic, magic she can ride like the motorcycles she loves. She rides the lightning, and it takes her forwards and backwards in time. It’s the ultimate trip.

Riding the lightning is a great adventure. But with great power, comes great responsibility. When she arcs to somewhen other, it’s because there is something she needs to do, someone she needs to save.

It’s a responsibility that has been passed through her family for millennia. But only from father to son. There are not supposed to be any female riders.

Back in Roman Spain, 2000 years ago, Penya is waiting for the rider of prophecy. She’s waiting for Evy. Penya is sitting on one of the cruxes of history. Evy is supposed to come back to Penya’s time and assassinate a Spanish rebel leader. It’s happened before, and it’s supposed to happen again.

In the present, there’s a man named Ilif. He says he’s there to guide Evy’s father in becoming a rider, but his motives are much less pure.

Evy’s quest is to save the past, and the future, before it’s too late.

Escape Rating B+: Particularly for a first novel, Lightning Rider was amazingly good.

The start is a teensy bit rocky. Evy’s breakup with her thieving ex-boyfriend, the thing that propels her down the road to her parent’s house in the first chapter still seems slightly random, but once she gets to her “Papi’s”, the action never stops.

Lightning Rider is a “time war” type story. Ilif is manipulating events for some murky purpose, and Penya is trying to stop him. Maybe. We don’t actually know what their motives are, but Ilif is not on the side of the angels.

in the garden of idenI love “time war” stories. There’s a hint of Kage Baker’s The Company in this, which is always good, but Evy seems to have more agency than Mendoza did. (Start with In the Garden of Iden, which is still awesome.)

This does have an element of the “needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few” as well. The man in the past who needs to be assassinated was a hero in his time, but history needs to remain unchanged. If it’s changed, our future gets wiped out. It’s a hard lesson.

The ending of Lightning Rider leaves the reader hanging. This story is definitely not over. I just wish I knew when to look for the next part!

***FTC Disclaimer: Most books reviewed on this site have been provided free of charge by the publisher, author or publicist. Some books we have purchased with our own money and will be noted as such. Any links to places to purchase books are provided as a convenience, and do not serve as an endorsement by this blog. All reviews are the true and honest opinion of the blogger reviewing the book. The method of acquiring the book does not have a bearing on the content of the review.