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Thunder (Stone Braide Chronicles Series #1)

( 11 )


The Time of Sorrows is long past.
The future of Selah and her people is shrouded in mystery.
And the clock is ticking.

Hidden in the tall grasses along a shore littered with the rusted metal remnants of a once-great city, a hunter crouches. It is the eve of her eighteenth Birth Remembrance and high time she proves to herself and her brothers that she can stand on her own two...
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Thunder (Stone Braide Chronicles Series #1)

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The Time of Sorrows is long past.
The future of Selah and her people is shrouded in mystery.
And the clock is ticking.

Hidden in the tall grasses along a shore littered with the rusted metal remnants of a once-great city, a hunter crouches. It is the eve of her eighteenth Birth Remembrance and high time she proves to herself and her brothers that she can stand on her own two feet. Selah Rishon Chavez waits not for game but for one of the small boats that occasionally crash against the desolate shoreline. Because inside one of these boats she will find her quarry--a Lander.

These people from an unknown land across the ocean are highly prized by the Company and bring a good price--especially if they keep the markings they arrive with.

Everything falls to pieces when the Lander whom Selah catches is stolen by her brothers, and Selah wakes the next morning to find the Lander's distinctive mark has appeared on her own flesh. Once the hunter, Selah is now one of the hunted, and she knows only one person who can help her--Bodhi Locke, the Lander her brothers hope to sell in the Mountain.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Calhoun’s first YA novel is set in post-apocalyptic America, where Selah Chavez goes against her family’s wishes and hunts for Landers, a people with distinctive markings who are captured and sold to a business known as the Company for reasons unknown. Those who live in the Mountain, the underground colony where the Company is located, have been protected from the devastation of the outside world. When Selah captures, then loses, a Lander named Bodhi Locke, she becomes one of the hunted when the same markings appear on her body. Calhoun (Cooking the Books) paints a dark, serious world and does not shy away from the violence that her characters suffer as they struggle with prejudice and even genocide, the latter activity veiled by justifications of scientific knowledge and progress. At times, the story suffers from clichéd writing or overdramatized incidents, but despite its shortcomings, Calhoun’s novel, which inaugurates the Stone Braide Chronicles, is on balance an entertaining and suspenseful read that will please those who enjoy intrigue and grimness. Ages 12–up. Agency: Hartline Literary Agency. (Oct.)
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—This complicated dystopian novel has a little bit of everything: a teen girl coming of age, a mysterious race with special powers, mad scientists, political and family drama, and more. Set in a future North America where strangers called Landers, identified by a prominent mark on their faces, are hunted and sold to a mysterious company in a mountain, the story focuses on Selah on the eve of her 18th birthday. She tries to catch a Lander to prove her worth to her family, but her plan goes awry. Physical contact with Bodhi Locke, the Lander she captured, causes her own mark to wake up, and she soon discovers that her real father was one of these outcasts. The teen flees her family in search of a colony that will accept her new identity. Adding to Selah's conflict, a group of Lander rebels wants to organize a revolt against the government that seeks to marginalize and wipe them out. The many threads sometimes makes this tale difficult to follow and several of them are unresolved. However, readers who stick with it will look forward to learning more about this complex world in the next installment. A good purchase where postapocalyptic series are popular.—Sarah Jones, Clinton-Macomb Public Library, MI
Kirkus Reviews
In search of her father, Selah takes a treacherous journey through the hardscrabble landscape of post-nuclear disaster. Since the Time of Sorrows, the remaining population has returned to subsistence living, as most food sources are contaminated and the infrastructure has crumbled. Also since that time, Landers, inscrutable figures marked by a wing tattoo, periodically wash up on shore, babbling of a "final Kingdom," to be hunted for bounty by the remnants of humanity. On her 18th birthday, shortly after finding a Lander, the Lander mark appears on Selah's chest, indicating that she's a half-breed. No longer safe, she leaves her Borough seeking her father and the protected fortress of the Mountain. She falls into fitful love with her gorgeous Lander companion, Bodhi, who teaches her about her new telepathic powers. Meanwhile, technology has advanced tenfold at the Mountain. Two scientists battle for dominion, while one is experimenting on Landers, using their DNA to find immortality. There are as many subplots to this novel as hydrogen bonds on a double helix, and the story is snarled by its own twists and clunky with contradictions. The romance is eye-rolling. The series' only hope is that the plot pursues its one fresh idea: What exactly are the Landers? A sci-fi mishmash set in a dystopian world where a kind of human/angel hybrid will probably save mankind. (Science fiction. 15-18)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780800723767
  • Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 10/7/2014
  • Series: Stone Braide Chronicles Series , #1
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 201,225
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 8.70 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Bonnie S. Calhoun teaches workshops on Facebook, Twitter, HTML, and social media at writers conferences. In her everyday life she is a seamstress and clothing designer. Bonnie and her husband live in a log home in upstate New York with a dog and two cats who think she's wait staff. Thunder is her first YA novel. Learn more at
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 11 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 22, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    **I received a free copy of this book from Net Galley in exchang

    **I received a free copy of this book from Net Galley in exchange for my honest review**

    2 ½ stars!

    I REALLY wanted to like this book…I loved how it started out, I enjoyed Selah’s character – strong and fierce – but somewhere around half way through, it really lost momentum and fell very flat for me.  The “where” of the Landers was never discovered, the adventure into the “Mountain” was patchy, the escape was strange, and the way the POV switched was at most times, quite confusing.  Tried to love it – it was a good concept, but it just didn’t hit all the notes I needed to feel as a reader.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 9, 2014

    Not recommended.  It is very rare that I do not finish a book, b

    Not recommended.  It is very rare that I do not finish a book, but this particular novel was extremely hard to get into and after finally reaching the halfway point, I set it aside.  I normally wish to give authors the benefit of the doubt, for I know that writing a book is a lot of work, and for which I applaud Bonnie S. Calhoun in completing that task.  I also appreciate her attempt to create a creative plot and her imaginative effort to produce a unique story.  However, this novel fell short in many, many ways.  The style of writing is much too simplistic and more than once I had to make sure I did not pick up a book suited for young readers.  In addition, the content is not pleasant; many times, the graphic details of certain scenes made me feel uncomfortable.  This novel also attempts to convey a society that is most confusingly a mix between science fiction and some type of fantasy but it did not communicate that properly.  Certain aspects of the futuristic society (such as their cars, homes, etc.) did not make any sense to me and I spent more time being frustrated at these details than enjoying the story.  The strange telepathic nature of the characters is also creepy.  In addition, the storyline is weak; Selah cries at every little thing and the romance between her and Bodhi is much too quick paced and borderline obnoxious.  I did not find a character with which I connected at all and their interactions are more annoying than enjoyable.  The dependence of Amaryllis on Selah is ridiculous after the child has survived three years alone in the wilderness (another illogical scenario).  If I had to compare this novel to a food I would choose plain, white rice – there is no richness to the story or any character development that pulls the reader in and captures the reader’s attention.  I do not recommend this book at all.

    I received a copy of this book from Revell Publishing in exchange for an honest review.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 11, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Intriguing book that quickly hooked me... Thunder   The Stone Br

    Intriguing book that quickly hooked me...
    The Stone Braide Chronicles 1  
    By Bonnie S. Calhoun  

    Determined to prove her worth to her father and her older brothers, Selah is determined to capture a Lander.  She's been warned to stay away from the beach and away from Landers.  But she can't stay away on this the eve of her eighteenth birth remembrance.  But little does she realize that this simple act of disobedience is about to forever alter her life.  

    More than a century has passed since the Time of Sorrows.  In that time few outside the Mountain have had dealings with those within.  The Company is secretive and hidden from the outside world, but they want Landers and they are willing to pay for them.  And unless Selah can get rid of the Lander mark she woke up with she will soon be hunted down like a Lander and sold.

    Landers are of importance only if they retain their markings and their memories.  But Selah has no Lander memories so why is she now marked?  Determined to steal back the Lander she captured before her brothers sell him, Selah sets out towards the Mountain.  Can she get Bodhi Locke away from her brothers or will the truths about her new identity be lost to her forever?

    Thunder is a set in the future.  The world as we know it has been destroyed and yet humanity has survived.  But the very tendencies that brought about this destruction still exist within the hearts of those who survived and their offspring.  

    Dangers exist both within the Mountain and without, the question is which danger is the greater risk to those who are hunted?  And who or what are Landers?  These marked people have abilities (both mental and physical) that are beyond what is considered normal.  

    Fans of dystopian or speculative fiction should enjoy this new series. In a world destroyed by the very people who called it home a new civilization of survivors has grown up amid the destruction. And in this world various groups are vying for supremacy.  Will the errors of the past be repeated or will the knowledge that the Landers possess change everything?

    I for one can't wait for book 2 Lightning (Fall 2015) and the answers it may reveal or raise.

    I was provided a copy of this book by Revell in exchange for my honest review.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 5, 2014

    I cant wait for the next one!!!!!

    I really loved this book! Its well written and the main character is a fierce and strong girl who just completes the book

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 3, 2014


    My dad told me about this, and since this is recommended for fans of Hunger Games and Divergent, while I have never read Divergent, I am a big fan of Hunger Games, so I placed a hold on it from my public library's website. I enjoy looking at the Nook Daily Finds, especially ever since I scored The Hunger Games for $1.99, and when I saw this on the Nook Daily Finds section today, I nearly freaked out. I mean, $0.99 for a book that's normally who knows how much? Who could let that slip? Anyhoo, it's LOL because my library actually had my book on hold today, and I checked it out, and then bought it on Nook! Great book so far! Look up Tremors, also by this author. It's a FREE Nook addition to the series while we're waiting for number two to come NEXT YEAR! :(

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 3, 2014

    Notice other sites not accepting reviews

    Has there been a freeze on revews suggest delete all but last four and those too if last year also lower characters to 200

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 17, 2014

     Considering that I am a very fearful person by nature, I try to

     Considering that I am a very fearful person by nature, I try to steer clear of dystopia. I think I've read three of them, and each one is the story of a world gone wrong.  
    (Remember- I'm the eight year old who stayed up one night worrying frantically that the sun would explode. And then worrying that I'd never sleep again.) 

    So anything set in a Post-Nuclear-Devastated America where a small but iron-handed group of elites run the show and the common people fight, kill, and struggle to survive is probably a no-no for me. 

    So how did I end up reading Thunder? I'm reviewing it of course. And yes, I did find it rather scary. Those mutant rabbits were really creeping me out!

    My Mom asked me why kids gravitate to dystopia today. "Is it because they feel such hopelessness?" 
    I think part of the lure of dystopia *is* that the settings are dark, and the author gives us permission to feel vulnerable and anxious about the darkness. Yet the authors also go a step further beyond wallowing in fear- they introduce us to ordinary young people who becomes heroes. 
    These boys and girls help fight the evil government, their own souls, and restore balance to the world. 

    I think if you've enjoyed Veronica Roth's Divergent and Jill Williamson's Safe Lands Trilogy, then you'll love Thunder. 

    Selah is a girl determined to be as tough as her brothers, yet she's also unsure of herself when her world shifts under her feet. 
    She wanted to prove her worth, but now she has to risk her life to rescue an enemy. 
    And then she finds herself bonding with the enemy when she realizes their fates are linked. 

    Add in the "adolescent" emotions Selah feels (longing for responsibility, sibling rivalry, beginning to romantically "like" somebody) and this book will grab many a teenage reader. 

    Thank you Revell Reads for my review copy! 

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  • Posted October 15, 2014

    Great first young adult novel by accomplished writer Bonnie S. C

    Great first young adult novel by accomplished writer Bonnie S. Calhoun
    As an avid reader of fantasy, science, fiction, and young adult novels, when I heard about the book Thunder, I knew it would be right up my alley. Set in a post-apocalyptic dystopian society, the descendants of those who survived The Time of Sorrows either live off the land in a somewhat primitive way, while trying to determine what is still “safe” to eat, or they are part of the self-contained Mountain people (aka The Company) who carry out mysterious scientific experiments with the benefit of technologically advanced equipment.
    I would describe the overall story as a combination of action, adventure, young romance, and science fiction. It is also a bit of a coming of age book where the teens within (Selah and Bodhi as well as others) are learning about themselves and the world around them, as they strive to not only make the right decisions but to survive. As you meet the various characters and follow along on the journey/quest with them, you will enjoy a tale (from various points of view) full of secrets, lies, danger, corruption, friendship, betrayal, hope, and love, while all along a battle between good and evil simmers below the surface.
    While I understand that some readers felt that the book did not have a deep enough spiritual tone (coming from a Christian publisher) or that it lacked any mention of faith or spiritual content, I felt like the spiritual references were subtle and intriguing (e.g., the Kingdom, the Presence, a reference to one of the experiments being an “abomination”). However, I admit that there were a lot of things that were not explained in this book that I would hope are either covered in the free e-book prequel—Tremors (which is now available online) or that things will become clearer in book two: Lightning. Perhaps the Landers, who are referred to as Immortals, are angels or some other type of spiritual being; I don’t really know. The good thing about this subtleness, in my opinion, is that those who are not familiar with Revell as a publisher of Christian books will enjoy the adventure, action, and mysteries contained within the story without realizing that there is an underlying message of hope and redemption. A message that will hopefully become clearer later on in this series.
    Overall, I enjoyed the book and am looking forward to more to come.
    Thank you to the publisher, Revell, for providing me with an advanced reader's copy for my personal review and my honest opinion of the book.

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  • Posted October 13, 2014

    I wasn¿t really sure what to expect with this book. I have read

    I wasn’t really sure what to expect with this book. I have read one of Bonnie’s other books which I really enjoyed but knew this one would be different. And it was. In all the right ways.

    This book has so many threads going through it, yet Bonnie manages to weave them together so none of them get tangled. Just when you think you have one thing figured out she throws something new at you and I couldn’t wait to see how or if she would resolve it.

    She has created one messed up society yet, how different is it really from our own? Maybe not so much and that’s scary.

    Selah is a very likeable character and there are many other characters in this book, some likeable some not so much.

    So, who would like this book? This is geared toward young adults, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. If you enjoy books like The Hunger Games or books that challenge your way of thinking you will enjoy this book. If you’re looking for something different and something to recommend to a teen in your life you might want to check this one out.

    A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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  • Posted October 9, 2014

    Thunder by Bonnie S. Calhoun is a dystopian young adult novel th

    Thunder by Bonnie S. Calhoun is a dystopian young adult novel that takes place 150 years into the future. Throw in a bit of Hunger Games, a pinch of Divergent and a little bit of X-Men (?) and you have a truly original story. We are introduced to Selah right before her 18th birth remembrance. With her life about to change and expectations placed on her that she does not agree with, she is trying to prove to her family that she is worthy. What happens at the beach, (where she was not supposed to be at, on a day she should have been home), will change her life in ways that she could not have foreseen. This was a very imaginative tale with many parts that worked well together. I liked the slow romance, the familial relationships, and enjoyed watching true friendships develop, against the backdrop of life and death situations and a lot of action. Along with Selah, I was quickly turning the pages to find out the answers to all the questions that she had and to find out the truth about the secrets that were kept from her. I look very much forward to the sequel, Lightning, because even though this book ends satisfactorily, I am interested in exploring more of this strange new earth. I am very pleased that the inspirational market is putting out more young adult novels that lack the junk yet tell a good story with hope. On a side note for parents, there is a bit of violence in this book just in case your teens are sensitive to that. There is a prequel novella called Tremors that is available at this time for free. I received this book from Revell, however the opinions are my own.

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  • Posted October 8, 2014

    I was really disappointed with Thunder. For the first 200 pages

    I was really disappointed with Thunder. For the first 200 pages I couldn’t get fully engaged in the story and felt little connection with Selah. I didn’t appreciate how she always handled certain situations and it caused me to be annoyed or frustrated (sometimes both!) with her behavior.

    Bodhi was by far my favorite character despite that there is not a lot spoken about his past. He has a fairly good sense of humor that lightened the mood many times and brought a smile to my face. I also liked the inside of the mountain and how it functioned. I actually wish that Bonnie would have given more details about it because it was very fascinating! Some of the technology was mind-blowing, if not a little scary.

    Overall, this story fell flat for me. I was either fully sucked into the story or I was just skimming over what sometimes felt unimportant details. I was hoping for more of a spiritual message since I felt that was really lacking and little less gruesome scenes. I was also aggravated about how the romance bloomed and hoped it would have had more depth.

    I will sadly be giving Thunder 3 out of 5 stars.

    *(I received this novel from Revell Reads Blogging Program in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts expressed are my own and I was not required to write a positive review.)*

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