Martin Hospitality + Watcher Key | Review

Hello reader! Coming at you with two review posts- bear with me as I try to form my thoughts and coherently put them into sentences. 😀

(also, guys! eXCiTiNG announcement!! I’ve been working on a large project with my friend Maddy and it launched yesterday! I’m going to do another blog post in a couple of days – hopefully tomorrow? – talking about it. Stay tuned! <3)

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Martin Hospitality:

by Abigayle Claire

Image result for martin hospitality

(guys, I can’t. that gorgeous cover.)


(taken from Goodreads)

Gemma Ebworthy is eighteen, pregnant, and alone. Now that she’s been evicted, she finds herself sleeping in a barn, never dreaming that tomorrow could bring kindness of a life-changing magnitude. 

The Martins aren’t a typical family—even for rural Kansas. With more kids than can be counted on one hand and a full-time farm, Gemma must make a lot of adjustments to fit in. But despite their many differences, Gemma finds herself drawn to this family and their radical Christian faith. 

When Gemma’s past collides with her yet again, she must begin revealing her colorful history. With every detail Gemma concedes, she fears she will lose the Martins’ trust and the stable environment she desires for herself and her unborn child. Just how far can the Martins’ love and God’s forgiveness go?


guys. What? 

Okay, let me sort my thoughts (again).

So Martin Hospitality is a book about a girl who’s pregnant out of wedlock*. It also talks a bit about abortion. First of all, this can be a touchy subject. At least, it’s definitely a difficult subject to write a book on without offending people. However, Abigayle did an excellent job on this. I love how she touches upon it humbly and gently. She states her beliefs clearly (not in your face clearly, but if you think about it you won’t be confused or anything) but not in a pushy way. I think that’s always an excellent way to approach a difficult subject. 

*sorry. I know we kind of jumped into the deep end immediately.

Second of all (well, this isn’t related to the first paragraph, but whatever), Abigayle’s style of writing is  a m a z i n g  and  f a n t a s t i c . It flows well- I never felt like some of the chapters weren’t connected or had bad transitioning. The characters are very well developed:

  • I really liked Gemma?? She’s such a lovable character. She has her flaws, but she deals with them in a mature way
  • (spoiler! please highlight white text) Josiah and Gemma ! ! ! ahhhhhhhh eeepppp yes
  • Bradley was a no-no for me
  • So was Travis
  • I LOVE the Martin family! Well, Mr. Martin didn’t really seem quite “right” at first, but he justified himself. And Gemma ended up liking him, so… 
  • I think my favorites of the Martin family are Josiah, Mariah, and Mrs. Martin
  • It’s so cool that there’s a baby in this book for, well, more than a third of the book! I know there are lots of books with babies in them, but normally it’s at the end (like an epilogue) and I don’t really get to see much of them?
  • (spoiler! please highlight white text) wow, that scene with Travis and Mr. Martin at the end was quite intense. I liked it though. 😛
  • I… didn’t really like Farris’ name. I’m not sure why. xP
  • (spoiler! please highlight white text) I wish we could’ve seen more romance developing between Josiah and Gemma- I feel like Josiah proposed [a little bit?] out of the blue

So that kind of turned into what I liked and didn’t like (there was really nothing I disliked though) list. 


  • Like I mentioned earlier, Gemma is a pregnant but not married, and there are also light mentions of abortion. However, none of this is condoned. It’s not dealt with in a heavy way, which is why I think it’d be fine for a mature 11 year old girl to read.
  • There is some romance between quite a couple of characters, but it’s all extremely clean.


I really loved this book! *squeals for an eternity* I definitely enjoyed the story line and all the twists, and if there’s a sequel, you bet that’s going right into my TBR list. 4.75 stars.

Recommended to mature 11 year olds+ for light mentions of abortion and pregnancy out of wedlock. 

*I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*


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The Watcher Key:

by Troy Hooker

Image result for the watcher key


(taken from Goodreads)

The Darkness is Rising… and Sam Forrester is caught in the middle. Abandoned by his foster parents at age fifteen, Sam is sent to a remote town to live with a grandfather he barely knows. He meets some unlikely people with an unusual secret … they are the descendants of immortal beings. Sam’s new friends lead him to their home, the land of Lior, where the Descendants of the Light have been battling the forces of Darkness for thousands of years. Sam and his friends soon discover there is a plot brewing in the darkest reaches of Lior that will not only change Sam’s own destiny, but also threaten the future of both worlds. Follow Sam as he uncovers the mystery of the Watcher Key.


I was pleasantly surprised at The Watcher Key! I’ve never heard anything about this book or Troy so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. Having finished this book, I can already tell you that I’m looking forward to the release of the second book. 😉


  • Great expressive writing. Troy writes extremely well- I was never confused while reading the book.
  • Clear imagery. You can definitely picture the scenes in your mind while reading easily and without much effort.
  • This isn’t really related to the writing? but it’s okay. The formatting in the book works so well with the feel of the book. Like… I really like it (those trees in the header? thing? !!!)
  • Troy builds the worlds of White Pine and Lior excellently and integrates them really well.
  • and I also want to see more of Chivler. I love librarians and book store keepers. 
  • and Gus.


  • Some of the characters (Emma and Sayvon specifically) seemed a little shallow to me. They almost seemed like they were there just to serve as a distraction to Sam romantically. They’ll probably become more fleshed out in the second book though.
  • (spoiler! highlight white text) A kiss happens before the two characters fall in love. While this isn’t exactly approved, it’s certainly not spoken of as a bad thing, so if you’re against that, just be careful. ;P
  • There’s kind of a love triangle. It isn’t the main focus at all, but I still wasn’t a fan of it (even though I normally kind of like them in books?).


  • Words like “bullcr-p” are mentioned, but nothing more than that
  • (I mentioned this earlier. It was highlighted as a spoiler, but if you’re on the cautious side about content and don’t really care about really really minor spoilers- at least I think it’s a very minor one, then read this. ;P) A kiss happens before two characters fall in love.
  • In-the-middle-of-detailed-and-barely-detailed description of some gruesome/frightening creatures


Brilliant book! I definitely enjoyed reading it and learning about Lior. Troy has a fantastic writing style that’ll definitely keep me looking out for Book #2. 4.5 stars.

Recommended to 12+ for minor romance and PG-rated descriptions.

*I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*


Have you ever read Martin Hospitality or The Watcher Key? What did you like and dislike about it? I would love to hear your opinion, whether you agree or not. 😉

Any questions? Feel free to ask below in the comments!

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12 thoughts on “Martin Hospitality + Watcher Key | Review

  1. I’ve heard SUCH GOOD THINGS about Martin Hospitality, but I’m broke and my library doesn’t have it . . . but I WILL read it! Eventually!

    (In the darkest part of my mind, I’m thinking, “yeah, that might not happen.” XD)

    And I’ve never heard of Watcher Key before, but it sounds right up my alley! And – a kiss before the characters actually fall in love? Interesting . . .

    Great reviews, Lilian! And can’t wait to hear about that project!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. *coughs and whispers* This certain project mayyyy let you do that. I hope I haven’t revealed too much. 😉

      Yeah, Troy, the author, is looking for reviews of it. And he’ll send you a paperback copy if you live in the US. *wiggles eyebrows*

      Thanks! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I KNOW IT’S SO GOOD. I rarely, if ever, cry in books, so I didn’t in this one (normally if I cry it ends up making me not really liking it… simply because it made me cry. *cough* I know, strange).

      AggghhHHH I loved Josiah- he’s so sweet to Gemma and his family. ❤ Thanks for commenting! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

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