Another Alaskan adventure {and a chance to win BIG prizes!}: Review of Stranded by Dani Pettrey

Dani Pettrey has quickly become one of my favorite authors with her Alaskan adventures and romantic suspense novels featuring the McKenna family.

stranded3dHer third book in the series, Stranded, is on-par amazing with the first two books in the series. I read it one day. ONE! (Disclaimer: I received a free copy of the book from the author in exchange for my review.)

But before I get to the review, I want you to know about this amazing giveaway Dani Pettrey and her publisher are hosting in conjunction with Stranded‘s release. It’s huge. Here are the basics.


In Stranded, Book 3 in author Dani Pettrey’s acclaimed Alaskan Courage series, reporter Darcy St. James knows something is wrong when her friend vanishes from her job on a cruise ship. Everyone else believes Abby simply left of her own accord, but something isn’t lining up, and Darcy knows the only way to find the truth is to put herself in Abby’s position.

Gage McKenna has taken a summer-long stint leading adventure excursions for the passengers of various cruise lines that dock in Alaska for a few days of sightseeing. He’s surprised to find Darcy onboard one of the ships, working undercover as a reporter.

Something sinister is going on, and the deeper they dig, the more they realize they’ve only discovered the tip of the iceberg.

To celebrate the story, author Dani Pettrey and Bethany House Publishers are pleased to present the ALASKAN ADVENTURES Sweepstakes, and your chance to win one of three fabulous prizes connected with the story!

Timeframe & Notifications:

This giveaway starts September 2, 2013 and ends September 19, 2013 @ 11:59 pm (PST). Winners will be selected Friday, September 20, 2013, and announced at

Alaskan Adventures Sweepstakes Grand PrizeGRAND PRIZE:


In Stranded, Darcy, Gage, and the McKenna family launch into all kinds of adventures: from high-octane ocean kayaking, to rugged island camping beneath the vast Alaskan skies.

Our grand prize winner will have the chance to build their own adventure, with a $300 adventure gear gift card of their choice from either Eddie Bauer or L.L. Bean.

And what would our hero and heroine do if they won the prize? Gage use it towards one of L.L. Bean’s gorgeous ocean kayaks, while Darcy would go for “Glamping” gear:)

Alaskan Adventures Sweepstakes Grand PrizeSECOND PRIZE:


Everyone knows Gage McKenna’s campfire cooking is second to none. But in Stranded, Darcy discovers that before Gage was a search and rescue hero, he secretly dreamed of attending culinary school.

Our second prize winner will have the chance to fulfill Gage’s dream with a $200 value, 1-year membership to Top Chef University.

Membership includes over 200 video lessons taught by Top Chef contestants, covering everything from soups to desserts.

Alaskan Adventures Sweepstakes Third PrizeTHIRD PRIZE:


Darcy once gave her missing friend, Abby, a beautiful shell necklace, engraved with a special message that made it one-of-a-kind.

Our third prize winner will receive their very own, one-of-a-kind “Earth & Sea” necklace valued at $100.

Handmade of New Zealand Paua shells, hammered copper, and Tahitian pearls, this necklace is the perfect compliment for a soft sweater and jeans, or a unique finishing touch for a little black dress on a special date night.

How to Enter:

Go to and complete the entry box, anytime between September 2 and September 19.


Sound fun? What are you waiting for?

Now for my review:

Two things I’m usually not into: extreme cold and risk-taking. But Pettrey’s stories are so well-written I want to hop on the next plane to Alaska and do some whitewater rafting. Or kayaking. Or underwater exploring.

In book 3, we follow Gage McKenna onto a cruise ship where he’s reunited with reporter Darcy St. James, who is in the middle of a mystery. Her friend has disappeared from the ship and the explanations don’t add up. Gage and Darcy are fighting their attraction to each other, as well as searching for answers about life, loss and purpose. In typical Pettrey style, there’s plenty of action, mystery and romance.

And I love every word of it.

Partway through, I had a lingering doubt about this style of book. Because, really, how many of us are going to find ourselves investigating a friend’s disappearance in the Alaskan wilderness? But, I think what Pettrey does is offer us some vicarious living, for one, and a reality check on relationships, for another. It’s in these high-pressure, high-stakes situations that her characters realize what–and often who–is important. We might not face the same kind of extreme situation, but it’s a good reminder that we need to cherish our most important relatinships and not let unforgiveness, pettiness or insecurities come between us and those we love.

It’s also just a really good story. Do I need to say it again?

You don’t have to start at the beginning of the series, necessarily, to enjoy Stranded, but all three books are worth your time, and you’ll get more backstory by starting with Submerged, then moving on to Shattered and Stranded. (P.S. There are two more books coming in this series!)


7 thoughts on “Another Alaskan adventure {and a chance to win BIG prizes!}: Review of Stranded by Dani Pettrey

  1. Lisa, this is such a fun, well-written review! Thank you so much helping us share about the giveaway and Dani’s awesome stories.
    Also, I loved, loved, loved your squirrel post below 🙂
    Cheering you on,

  2. Lisa,
    Thanks so much for taking time to read and review Stranded. THRILLED you enjoyed Gage and Darcy’s story. Thanks so much for your amazing post and for helping spread the word about the Alaskan Adventure contest.

  3. Lisa, wonderful post! And I had to chuckle when you said Dani’s writing makes you want to hop on a plane to Alaska– I relate! So much so that outside Dani’s books, I’ve recently been getting my vicarious fill of Alaska via tv documentaries. Would love to go someday!

    • Thanks, Amanda! My husband has a cousin who lives in Alaska, so we even have a good excuse to go. If only we didn’t live on the entire other side of the country! Maybe someday … 🙂

  4. Pingback: A cliffhanger of a story: Review of Silenced by Dani Pettrey {plus a giveaway!} | Living Echoes

  5. Pingback: All good things must come to an end: Review of Sabotaged by Dani Pettrey {plus giveaway!} | Living Echoes

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