Cover Image: Fire, Water, and Rock

Fire, Water, and Rock

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Member Reviews

It was great to read a new author and I am looking forward to new books hopefully soon.

This is an excellent debut. The characters are good together and have chemistry. The supporting characters are also very well described and they all bring something to the story. The story arc is carried across very well along the book and when it peaks it keeps the reader interested until the end.

Finally this is also a book where the reader can learn about geology, wildfire and camping. I really enjoyed it.
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A book with a picturesque, beautiful setting with a fair amount of drama. I couldn't get invested in the romance between the two MC's. 
Overall, it's a well-written debut and I would check out what the author releases next.
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I love books set in beautiful settings and this book definitely features one - a picturesque State Park in Washington. The story is filled with drama, which definitely kept me engaged throughout. However, Jessica as a character really irked me and I had issues moving past that. The dynamics between Clare and Lyn also made me uneasy and overall, I finished the book not quite invested in the romance between the two protagonists.

I don't usually mind reading books that feature cheating but I found this one a bit tough to swallow seeing as though Jessica doesn't tell Clare about her boyfriend back home. The dishonesty just felt wrong and I didn't really like her as a character due to this. 

Overall, it's a well-written debut with a romance that just didn't work for me. Regardless, I'll be looking out to see what Erdell releases next.

Many thanks to the author, Netgalley and Bold Strokes Books for a copy of this novel. ARC provided in exchange for an honest review.
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As soon as I found this book I knew I was going to love it! And I wasn’t wrong 😍

It’s a beautifully written plot and characters with interesting backstories.

Two women meet in Dry Falls State Park: Jess who is an academic trying to finish her geology thesis, and Clare who is a ranger and extremely passionate about protecting the park. Both deal with their own insecurities and past while discovering themselves in a beautiful summer.

Alaina Erdell manages to transport the reader to the beautiful camping site, the lake, the hiking spots while giving information about geology (which quite frankly as someone who loves to collect pretty rocks I loved it).
This story made me long for summer, for outdoor exploration and for long afternoons drinking by a lake.

This is a story of love, friendship and found family which I very much recommend! 

Thank you to the author and to Bold Strokes Books for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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The setting in a state park is kind of refreshing. Nature, lake, firecamp are so well descripted it almost makes you want to go camping if you are into nature. Either the writer is a geology nerd, either she did a hell of a good work at researching. The attraction between the MC is well written although I could not feel the chemistry between them right away. Clare's background and wounds bring depth to the story. Jess is younger and takes poor decision, I felt kind of uneasy and wanted to scream at her the whole book but it brought a good dose of tension and drama. Side characters aren't for decoration, they either bring warmness or drama.
Overall it was a good mix of drama and emotions.
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This publisher is hit or Miss but I’ve found a few rare gems so I keep trying them out when one captures my attention. I was intrigued by the premise of this one - honestly the combo park ranger and geologist relationship in the woods sounded hot. I did like the characters and the plot but the writing wasn’t very sophisticated and the dialogue was very cheesy so this one was just ok for me. Worth finishing but I won’t remember it next year.
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The first thing to draw you in with this book is the beautiful cover. We should get more covers like this in the genre. 

I found this book to be one of many with the same themes being released around this time, park rangers, camping, seems like there is a new trend in the sapphic fiction world. What makes this slightly different is the geology aspect and the educational aspects in this book.

I enjoyed the romance and the setting, but it was just a dime a dozen.
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The stunning cover drew my attention and I was very curious for this debut novel. Honestly, it did not disappoint.

I see a lot of people commenting on the cheating part, but aside from that it was a good read. Jess goes to the park to work on her thesis but she finds so much more than schoolwork. She finds herself and her person. Although it took me some time to see what they see in each other, I did like their interactions together.

Clare has had a rough deal the last couple of years in life and love and it has made her kind of reclusive. She lives for her work and it's all she cares about at the moment. She has some friendships at work although the friendship with her best friend isn't always easy as that friend has deeper feelings for her.

I enjoyed the way the author writes about the park and camping. I'm not a big camper myself but it did make me think about visiting one of those parks and campings one day. Especially if I'll meet friends there like Jess did.

I received an ARC via Netgalley in return for an honest review.
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This was a cute and quick read. 
I loved thw tension between characters and how it was kinda like a workplace romance.
I would recommend this to literally everyone except if you can't stand queer love then you shouldn't open the book.
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Fire, Water, and Rock drew me in as a sapphic romance novel between a geology grad student and a park ranger. I really enjoyed this book. As a grad student, I'm a little confused as to how Jess was able to work on writing her thesis without internet access as it seems like basic googling is 50% of the writing process, but I liked Jess's story line. Clare and Jess were natural characters, both with their own flaws, and the relationship felt natural. The plot was okay, though some choices made, specifically a  lack of communication didn't help the plot or relationship. The plotline with Brett didn't feel fully fleshed out and we didn't spend as much time on that plot as I would've liked.

TLDR; Fire, Water, and Rock is a fun summer sapphic romance with strong characters, but some plot deficiencies.
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A great romance and a fantastic read, I thought the book was well written and the main characters fully developed.  They formed a great friendship. I loved Tim and Dan they were good secondary characters with their love and support for Clare and Jess. I recommend,

Thank you NetGalley and Bold Strokes Books.
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A fun romance that also felt adventurous and educational! 

Jessica is studying to be a geologist, and decides to go on a months-long camping trip to check out the rocks around Dry Falls State Park in Washington. It's here she meets Clare, one of the rangers at the park. 

With instant attraction between them, we're thrown into a Summer of friends, exploring caves and hiking around the area. I thoroughly enjoyed the setting (as an avid outdoors fan myself) and learning a lot more about "just rocks" in an easy to understand way that wasn't boring at all.

For a debut novel, Erdell had conversation flowing naturally, along with well thought out side characters to keep things interesting with the plot.

My biggest gripe was with Jess' behaviour with her boyfriend. Her choices were hard to read as the issue was teased throughout the book. Knowing Jess was essentially cheating meant I couldn't fully enjoy the relationship between her and Clare, which was frustrating.

Otherwise, still a good read and really looking forward to what Erdell brings out next. Would recommend. 

Thanks to NetGalley and Bold Strokes Books for the ARC.
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Alaina Erdell….  Another new author for us to look out for over the next few years. 

Fire, water and rock is a good first book. Love the cover, and the characters engage well together and give off chemistry. , I’d have liked a little bit more description of the scenery just for the feels… but overall, I did enjoy the story. 

However…. Cheating is cheating, and that does happen in this book. We learn early on in the story that Jess has a boyfriend back home, but while she's away working, that Is when she meets Clare. Even tho there's nothing between Jess and the boyfriend, and the relationship is more for comfort and habit, it's still there. Which for me, put an absolute downer on the story. 

I've given Fire, water and rock a 3.2 out of 5.
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I received an ARC copy of Alaina Erdell’s debut novel “Fire, Water, and Rock’’ from BSB (via NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review.
So, here it is !!! 
My rating : 3⭐️

The story sets in Grant County, Washington, in the amazing geographical landmark known as “Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park” … Damn, the landscape description was so good I ended up online looking at pictures because I wanted to see the place for myself. It’s now definitely on my bucket list !!! And I learned a lot of things about geology. I loved it, it was very interesting.

Now for the less cool parts: I’ll do my best not to be too harsh for what comes next … (since my goal is not to offend anyone, especially not a newbie author showing a real potential) 

What promised to be a great read sadly ended up to be just an OK read for me. Don’t get me wrong, I liked a lot of little things in the book but aside the gorgeous settings & the MCs’ common interest in the state park (Jessica Sterling is a budding geologist here to work on her thesis & Clare DeVere’s a park ranger) but there was nothing mind-blowing in the story. What I mean is that everything was way too predictable (from the start and on all accounts you knew it was coming, there was no surprise anywhere): the “mess” with the supposed best friend, the bit of angst resulting from both MCs’ complacency regarding their personal interactions with some of the people in their lives, as well as the unfamous 80% black moment (even if in this case, it didn’t bothered me too much since from the start we knew Jessica was there for a limited time only). 
I found the MCs totally immature and very hard to like. I’m definitely not keen of Jessica being (technically) a cheater … I can’t stand cheaters. I have a lot of empathy for wounded people (physically or mentally) but for cheaters, duh !!! I have none !! And this aspect of Jessica’s life made me not liking her & wishing Clare stayed away from her because she deserved much better… I felt for Clare, well,  at least at first, but after a while her procrastination pissed me off even more despite it being about a friendship & that’s for purely selfish reasons she kept Lyn’s around despite knowing her bestie’s feelings for her …

If some people can go with cheaters & lazy characters without blinking an eye when human relationship are involved, they’ll probably love the book but no excuse is good enough where I’m concerned because there’s no excuse to let an unrequited love go on and on because that's cruel. And there's just NO excuse at all for cheating. If you’re not in love with your partner, break it with them, don’t keep the relationship going (even without being physically together) just because you are afraid of this or that. For those reasons, in the end, I couldn’t care any less about any of the MCs.

From my POV, choosing another secret issue than her useless BF for Jessica and having Clare fighting for real against Lyn’s unrequited love would have allowed to better flesh out the story, especially by adding more actions (so more excitement) from Clare’s professional side. All this would have transformed the book in a more solid novel, because it would have made it way more than just another average romance among so many… And in addition, I could have done without the few typos found here and there. (e.g.: if “people’s party de jour” is, indeed, based on the French language, it should be “du jour”)

OK … So … Despite my mixed feelings about “Fire, Water, and Rock”, it's the author’s debut novel, so, there’s plenty of room for improvement ... I really think Alaina Erdell is full of potential and it makes her one of the new authors I’ll keep my eyes on for future releases & I really hope I’ll click way more with her next novels …

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I think this is a great debut novel and I look forward to seeing more from Alaina Erdell. I'm a sucker for a good romance set in the great outdoors and this one delivered.
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Thanks to NetGalley and Bold Strokes Books for this ARC in exchange for a review.

This story centers around Park Ranger Clare and thesis chasing college student Jessica Sterling. Clare and Jessica are both extremely adorable, sharing their love of nature. Clare going out of her way to find things that she thinks Jessica was going to like was cute. The only thing that kind of marred this was the fact that Jessica is technically seeing someone else at the same time. This is a trope I feel is kinda overdone in sapphic romances, but the explanation of why Jessica handled things the way she did, and the fact from the get go we see that neither she nor her boyfriend have any actual feelings for one another helped get passed this, though for the entire time I was waiting for the other shoe to drop.
The main plot of this story is character driven, showing Clare having to learn to let go of things from her past and Jessica learning that while it’s okay to be alone you can still find help from friends. The cast of characters was small, but I love the brothers Ian and Tim and Helen and her husband are the kind of people I’d love to have in my life.
I also love the backdrop of the national park and learning factoids like the Blue Rhino Lake and it made me really want to go visit some time soon.
All together it was a good story, especially for a debut novel, and I’d like to see what else Erdell gives us.
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I really struggled with this novel. If you want to learn a lot about rocks, this is the book for you. if you want a book with a good romance where the characters have chemistry, this book is not where you're going to find that. It was predictable and altogether boring, and there is still one major plot hole that I'm still confounded about when the MC thinks she sees someone watching the group, and it never circles back to that. The MC is naive, and I took issue with the fact that the mc was literally away from her boyfriend for more than four months and didn't hear from her boyfriend and didn't think he might be cheating on her. The character development was severely lacking and disappointing, and all of the characters were very one-dimensional, and you only ever got the surface-level issues. The spicy scenes were not spicy, which is okay, but even that fell flat. Overall it was a disappointing and boring read to me.
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Fire, Water, and Rock by Alaina Erdell is a lovely romance set in the majestic Dry Falls State Park in Washington State. This is the author’s debut novel, and I must say, it is a very good first novel.

Jessica (Jess) Sterling has come to spend the summer at the state park campground expecting to work on her thesis in geology. On her first day she meets park ranger Clare DeVere. There is an instant attraction between the two, and they begin what could turn out to be either a summer fling, or maybe something more permanent. 

There are some outside forces that could tear them apart, from Clare’s jealous best friend, Jess’s soon to be ex-boyfriend and a womanizing park ranger that’s far too interested in Clare.
This story has an interesting plotline. The main characters are relatable and well developed. The love story is a bit of a slow burn, which I happen to like. One of the best parts of this tale is the gorgeous and well-described setting. The story had a bit of a slow start, but I kept reading, and the more I read, the more interesting the tale became.

Fire, Water, and Rock is a good beginning for this author. I will be looking for more from them. 

I received an ARC from NetGalley and Bold Strokes Books for an honest review.
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This is a story about Jessica Sterling who is a geologist and writing her thesis. She’s given permission to work at Dry Falls State Park in Washington state over the summer. While doing her research she meets park Ranger Clare DeVere. They have an instant attraction and spend the summer exploring the park and its caves and do a bunch of rock climbing. 

Jess struggles with loneliness and has a secret that she doesn’t share with Clare and it turns into a black moment. Clare has had a bad relationship and is reluctant to start a new one. 

I enjoyed this book and enjoyed the slow burn romance. Both MC’s were very likable for me. And it’s a good lesson for all of us starting a new relationship to come clean up front with your past relationships. I love being outside and going to national parks to hike and explore. So this book was perfect for me in that regard. 

ARC received from Net Galley for an honest and voluntary review.
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Clare DeVere has worked as a Park Ranger for the past nine years. In that time she’s made a few friends and even fell in love. One of the many jobs Rangers do is try spotting a fire and hopefully be able to put the fire down before it has a chance to grow. Clare loved her job and when she fell in love she was the happiest she’d remembered for a long time. Then the worst thing that could have happened did. One member of Clare’s team didn’t make it back. The fire was faster than the Ranger.
    Jessica Sterling was for all intents and purposes an orphan. Her mother died during childbirth, so for many years it was just the two of them. Just when everything seemed to be going in the right direction, with Jess starting college to become a geologist, news came that her father had passed. Now really alone she starts dating Jackson just to try to overcome the loneliest.
    Now Jess has traveled to Dry Falls State Park to finish the research needed to complete her thesis. There she meets Clare and a summer romance begins. Ms Erdell has done a pretty good job with her first novel. Great characters and an interesting plot turned this book into a very enjoyable read.
ARC via NetGalley/ Bold Stroke Books
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