Mountain of Love and Danger

Young Adult, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Christian Books

By Gail Pallotta

Publisher : Mountain Laurel Publishing / Create Space

ABOUT Gail Pallotta

Gail Pallotta
Award-winning author Gail Pallotta’s a wife, Mom, swimmer and bargain shopper who loves God, beach sunsets and getting together with friends and family. A former regional writer of the year for American Christian Writers Association, she won Clash of the Titles in 2010. Her teen book, St More...



Jack Greenthumb finds romance in Fairwilde Kingdom—a different day—a different girl. Then a cruel mystery begins. Dad’s beaten, the family farm destroyed and Jack’s true love, Gwendolyn Bante, kidnapped. Jack’s undercover operation reveals Gwenie’s a captive atop a mountain accessible only by helicopter. Reaching her is a dangerous expedition even for a champion rock climber like Jack. However, a Greenthumb Acres employee plants a miraculous seed from Heaven for the rescue. Suspense mounts as Jack scales the perilous cliff only to face a burly brute and a treacherous descent in this retelling of the fairy tale, Jack and the Beanstalk.

Five writers decided it would be fun to publish a series of retold fairy tales as modern-day Christian / inspirational versions. I chose to retell Jack and the Beanstalk because I enjoy mystery and suspense with a bit of romance. I first imagined the beanstalk as something that could lend itself to mystery. Then I thought what if Jack had a girlfriend who was kidnapped and taken to a mountain. Of course, the book had to have a giant. Thus began the crime, the undercover operation, the climb up the mountain and the perilous descent.

Five-Star Review on Amazon

This is a story filled with danger, sweet romance and faith. Told from the backdrop of Jack and the Beanstalk it is a touching story of powerful love between Jack Greenthumb and Gwenie. She is kidnapped and taken to a shack perched on a mountain top. The kidnapper is a huge man, going along with the old story.
This novel kept me reading and wondering what was going to happen next. It is filled with emotion as Jack suffers through his missing sweetheart, his father’s illness, and destruction of the farm’s property. I was kept in the dark about why Gwenie was kidnapped, and why the property is so important. These questions also kept me reading. Added to that was how to scale the mountain and get back down. Just when I thought the story was over, I experienced more chapters that made the ending more satisfying.
We are made to root for Jack and Gwenie but it doesn't stop there. Other characters’ portrayal are handled very well, making us care what happens to them as well. Ms. Pallotta definitely cares about her characters.
I highly recommend this novel and give it five stars.

By Larry Hammersley, author


Five Stars from Amazon


This sweet novella is a take-me-away moment of pleasurable reading. Retelling Jack and the Beanstalk for contemporary times, but with an obvious nod to a fantastical kingdom, the author has created a suspenseful romance.

Jack, the son of famed Greenthumb Acres, supplier of all vegetable in the kingdom, lives a fast-paced love em and leave em life, all the while anchored by his mostly patient true love, Gwenie. But even Gwenie has her limits when she sees him flaunting his new sports car with a girl in the passenger seat. To make it up to her, Jack treats Gwenie to dinner at the new restaurant on the hill. When Jack’s family enterprise is threatened by the thugs who now own the restaurant, Jack and Gwenie are embroiled in a plot to overthrow not only the Greenthumbs but Fairwilde Kingdom itself.

Jack must face reality and grow up or lose Gwenie for good when she disappears. Is Jack man enough to rescue his fair lady love? From atop a mountain? Which he must climb? Jack learns a valuable lesson in love and loyalty and family support in this delightful tale.

Told through both Jack and Gwenie’s eyes and recommended for those who enjoy shorter romantic reads with elements of danger and wonderful outlandish characters in a fantasy setting.


By Lisa Lickel, author and book reviewer