Review: The Land of the Gems

The Land of the Gems

Written by:  Jill Sheets

the land of the gems cover“The Land of the Gems” written by Vanessa Rose Lee is a Young Adult fantasy/adventure book.  The book is about a teenage girl named Kate and the adventure  she has during her summer break at camp.  One day Kate and her friends set out for a walk and while they were walking in the woods they found this treasure case full of gems. The gems then took them on a wonderful adventure, one that Kate will remember for a lifetime.

Not only is this a good book for Young Adults, but for adults also especially if you like fantasy/adventure books.  “The Land of Gems” had me hooked from the beginning and that is something that is hard to do.  I quickly related to Kate and her self-esteem issues. The story is well written and the characters believable. Something else that I thought that made the book even better is the message that it had.

So give “The Land of the Gems” By Vanessa Rose Lee a try.  It is a good read no matter who you are. Also, check out my recent interview with the author about this book and some of her others.

Chit Chatting with Vanessa Rose Lee

Chit Chatting with Vanessa Rose Lee

Written by:  Jill Sheets

the land of the gems coverRecently I had the great honor of interviewing the talented author, Vanessa Rose Lee.  Continue to read on and learn more about her, her new books and what she is currently working on.  Also, soon look forward to a review on her book “The Land of the Gems.”

R: Why did you decide to write Young Adult and children books?
I believe that young adults and children are the two age groups that I enjoy writing for the most. Writing for these age groups allows me to express my creativity and imagination.

R:  Tell us about your book “The Land of the Gems”
The Land of the Gems is about fantasy and adventure. Kate is the main character who goes to summer camp and she embarks on an adventure that takes her back in time. My book is great for those of us who enjoy fantasy stories.

R:  How did you come up with the idea for the book?
The message that I want to share with my readers is to believe in yourself.  I hope to encourage readers to not give up on their dreams.  I also have a fascination with gems. I thought it would be fun to combine that in the storyline. Of course, I also enjoy the Renaissance period and history in general. So, this book captures all of these areas of interest.

R:  Kate was my favorite character.  How did you come up with her? Her background?  Was she based on a real person?
The teenage years are when most of us are struggling with self-esteem issues. Kate represents this age group. For example, learning how to drive is an accomplishment for most teenagers. Kate starts out being nervous about driving. I don’t want to give away too much, but what she goes through and traveling to The Land of the Gems, she learns the valuable lesson to believe in yourself. So, she is more relaxed in driving at the end of the book because of what she has been through.

R:  I love the message to the story – believe in yourself.  What advice would you give to our listeners that do not believe in themselves?  Whether it is accomplishing their goals, getting a god great on a test or anything?
I think that life is much easier when you don’t take things too seriously. Don’t be hard on yourself if you get a bad grade or have a bad day.  I learned a new saying, which is “Be good to yourself.” So, be good to yourself and don’t be hard on yourself. When you have a positive attitude or outlook, think about how much better life could be. Two years ago, I had an interview with you about “The Beauty Queen and the School Nerd” and I mentioned the famous saying, “Life is too short.” Life is short and is filled with ups and downs. In the end, how we choose to overcome challenges is what makes life interesting.

R:  One of my favorite questions, if they were to make this book into a movie, who would your dream cast be?
That is a really good question. I could see someone like Stella Hudgens who is the younger sister of Vanessa Hudgens as Kate. She is a great actress that would play the role well.

Beach Party Girls CoverR:  Tell us about your book “Beach Party Girls”

Beach Party Girls is a “girls just wanna have fun” book. Kim and Stephanie live a fast-paced, glamorous lifestyle. However, an event or phone call changes their lives, and they have to try to see how to get by. The message of the book is survival of the fittest because the girls have to work hard in order to get by. The other message is to take life day by day and you will go far. I think it also does have the underlying message of “believing in yourself” and having the confidence to put your mind to accomplish your goals. For the Beach Party Girls, this includes finding and keeping a job, finding love, and finding their own strengths in the book.

R:  Tell us about “The Haunted House of Riddles.”
I really love Halloween and came up with this idea after making a flier in a graphic design class. After the creation of the flier, I wanted to create a picture book. I came up with the idea of kids being able to go to a haunted house and everyone would speak using riddles.

R:  This book is both in Spanish and English.  Do you speak Spanish?
I started learning Spanish in middle school and went up to the second year level in college. I would say that I am above average in writing Spanish rather than speaking. My Spanish speaking skills are average since I do not have many people to practice with. I think that learning the Spanish language is important since it is the second highest growing language here in America, which is why I decided to create a bilingual picture book.

R:  Tell us about your book “Funny Jimmy”
Funny Jimmy’s message is to not be afraid of failure. You’ll never know if you are good at something, unless you try it first. Funny Jimmy is about a boy who goes to clown school to see if he will be good at it or not. So, the whole message is to try something before you give up.

R:  Where can people get your books?
I’m glad you asked because the books can be found at major retailers such as Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and many more. I would also like to share that Funny Jimmy is an animated picture book that is available on all apple products at the itunes store.

R:  Are you currently working on another book?  If so, can you tell us anything about it?
Currently, I am working on a sequel to The Land of the Gems. Right now, it is in the brainstorming sessions and I have not been able to put pen to paper yet. So, I can’t spill many details on it.

R:  What is your official website?  What about social networking sites?
I can be found on many social networking sites. I am on Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace. You can find the direct link for the animated Funny Jimmy book on my Facebook fan page and Twitter. I consider my blog as my official website, which is

R:  Anything else you would like to add or say to your readers?
I would like to say that I really appreciate all of your support. Thank you to Jill Sheets for having me on her show, to the listeners of this program, and especially my fans. Thank you for the opportunity to discuss my books, and check them out!