Sunday, December 23, 2012

Guest Review By BookMarks - Roses at Dusk by Maree Ward-Russell

For a fan of most things supernatural (ok, all) when I was offered a chance to review Maree Ward Russell’s Roses at Dusk, well, keen would be an understatement. I’m constantly on the search for new trilogies to keep me occupied and as an opener, this one certainly left an impression.

I won’t spoil the story for you (I do hate it when book reviews do that) but I will tell you to banish all your expectations - the plot takes a whole different direction from the one you expect. I’ll admit, even a supernatural literature junkie like me did not see this coming.
However unexpected the storyline, it is well thought through and detailed in its character background and analysis. The hero Felix is more heart than hunk, and what’s more, the heroine Hannah is likeable and down-to-earth; for once there’s no over emphasis on how ‘stunning’ she is - she’s just an average, good-looking girl with an overenthusiastic gal-pal and a demon problem. Y’know, just like the rest of us. 
How to Read it: 
With a cup of tea and a packet of biscuits. You’ll need the comfort food.
Top Tips:
If you really want to get the most from it (and I know this will sound strange) brush up on your Paradise Lost - or at least google it. There are some religious and demonic themes that, while readily understandable whether you’re a Milton devotee or not, you’ll be able to read much more into if you know the background mythology.
Age: 16+
Although it’s classed as ‘teen/young adult fiction’ the themes touched upon are quite adult so I wouldn’t recommend it for younger readers.
Fantasy: 7/10
I personally enjoyed the whole ‘fallen angel’ vibe of the book and how it was intermingled with the more realistic scenes of modern America.
Language Difficulty: 5/10
On the whole it’s fairly straightforward, only a few bits of supernatural jargon might confuse the inexperienced. For the first few pages I found myself distracted by the short, staccato sentences but after that either they elongated or I became sufficiently distracted by the story not to notice.
Entertainment: 7/10
I wouldn’t exactly say ‘I couldn’t put it down’ (although I do believe that will be the case for some readers) but I did look forward to the brief interludes at work when I was secretly able to scan a few chapters.
Other Books in the Trilogy soon to be released
Snowdrops Wilt at Dawn

Amazon - HERE

Maree on Facebook - Here
Mission Statement - BookMarks is dedicated to providing you with reviews full of the things you actually want to know about a book.

Twitter: follow @jenniferjaffa
Review from Amazon
5.0 out of 5 stars Roses with a strange and exotic perfume.
This review is from: Roses At Dusk (The Demonic Series) (Kindle Edition)
Roses at dusk is a poetic title suggesting a romantic lover but these roses are the gift of a dangerously fascinating being. What is Hannah to do?

I was very struck by the art work and the author's description of this book and bought it almost as soon as it was published. I have waited some time before reviewing it because this story surprised me and I needed time to think about it. The author writes with passion and total commitment and the intensity of the central relationship is expertly described. It is very hard to write about what happens without being a plot spoiler but this book offers hope to anyone who feels trapped by negativity and fear, whether teen or adult. The roses also contain beauty and joy! The themes of the book reminded me of ancient fairy/folk tales, the ones passed down through generations containing hidden advice and warnings. Hansel and Gretel for example. The author appears to have a very serious purpose mixed in with a sense of fun and a wild imagination. All very much appreciated by me. I am very interested to see how this writer develops. It is amazing that she has found time to write such a thought provoking and original book while being the mother of five teens, another example of her commitment. I am very much looking forward to reading the next part of the story.
If you have enjoyed reading this book review by BookMarks, please share it wit your friends.
Many thanks, Patti Roberts
Supporting Indie Autors

Saturday, December 15, 2012

What would you do! This book is AWFUL...

Recently, I received a message from a friend of mine (30 years in the editing business) who just finished reading a yet to be published book, and thought I would share it with you.

If you were the book reviewer in this predicament, how would you handle the situation?

If you were the author, how would you want to be told...?

Honey, I loved the title of the author's book so much I read a copy. Meanwhile, we've been messaging, but, honey, this book is AWFUL. Terrible writing. Breaks every rule in the book. It is actually uneditable... he just can't write. I need to tell the author something, in all honesty, but  not sure how to go about it.

The author will be slaughtered by reviewers if they keep this book out there in its current form. Any ideas on how to break it gently to the author without making them hate me?

Not only is the punctuation terrible, the sentence structure and dialogue and description are all atrocious. Worst I have ever read. Help!

(The sender of this message is anonymous for obvious reasons)

So what would you do? How would you handle this situation?

 I look forward to hearing your thoughts in the comment box, Patti

If you have enjoyed reading this post, please forward it your Facebook and Twitter friends.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Author Interview with Nikki Broadwell. Author of the Wolfmoon Trilogy)

Hi Nikki, where were you born and where do you call home?~I was born in Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, if you can believe it. I'm an army brat. I now live in Tucson, Az and that's home, at least for the time being...

Tell us about something that has just happened or is about to happen in your life that you would like to share. ~I moved here in April of this year--it was big, considering that my husband and I had been in Portland, Oregon for over fifteen years.  Rainforest to the desert--about as opposite as you can get! 

What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 30 or less words, what would you say?~The Wolf Moon is # 3 in a trilogy and is not published yet. It's the culmination of a story that starts 25 years earlier (The Moonstone) and encompasses an epic battle to save a mystical world.

If you gave one of your characters an opportunity to speak for themselves, what would they say? ~My protagonist, Maeve would probably say: "Thanks a lot for putting me into a nearly impossible situation. Who does this to a person? I was going on with my life, minding my own business when--poof--I'm transported into a place where myths are actually true...

Do you have plans for a new book?   Is this book part of a series?~I'm working on a sequel to Wolfmoon Trilogy called 'Valley of the Moon' and the protagonist is a minor character from Book 2 and 3..

What books have influenced your writing? I started reading early, so a lot of fairy tales, all the fantasy childhood books like Alice in Wonderland, The Borrowers, Doctor an adult, Jung, Huxley, Tom Robbins, Orwell, C.S. Lewis, Tolkien, Margaret Atwood, Iris Murdock, Murakami, Pullman and more recently, A Discovery of Witches, by Deborah Harkness, Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon...too many to name!

Is there an Author that you would really like to meet? ~I think it would be Margaret Atwood or Tom Robbins

Do you prefer ebooks, paperbacks or hardcover? ~quality paperbacks

Where do you prefer to buy your books? ~I usually order used or new from Amazon. When I lived in Portland I went to Powell's City of Books where they also have used books..

Are you a self published (Indie) Author? ~Yes

What book would you like to read again?~I don't usually go back, but maybe The Lord of the Rings, although now with the movie and all it woudn't be the same...

Is there a particular movie that you preferred over the book version?~I think they did a wonderful job with the The Golden Compass, by Phillip Pullman and was disappointed that the series wasn't continued...but I loved the books...

What book are you currently reading and in what format (ebook/paperback/hardcover)? I'm reading Shadow of the Night, second in the series by Deborah Harkness---first vampire story I've read...not like any of the others out there since she's an historian

Are there any Authors that have grasped your interest recently and why?~I've been enjoying Susanna Kearsley--she writes what I might call time-travel love stories. I've bought several books from Indie authors on Facebook but haven't finished reading them to make a comment as yet...

Who designed the cover of your book?~ Createspace did Book I and II and Patti Roberts did the cover for The Wolf Moon  (thank you Patti!)

Patti says: My pleasure Nikki!

Do you buy a book by the cover? ~Covers definitely attract me. But then I open it up and read the first paragraph..or use the 'look inside' feature on amazon

Do you have a book trailer?~I have a youtube trailer but it's a bit hokey...

What are your thoughts on book trailers?~ I like the idea of them...would love to have another for Book III but don't have a lot of extra cash to spend. 

Do you have any advice for other writers?~ Have your book edited by a professional before you put it out there--but make sure they understand you and what you're trying to and your editor have to be a fit--and keep writing! it's the best teacher...

Do you write under a pen name?~ Not yet but I'm working on a fictionalized version of my parent's life together and I may have to use a pen name to avoid criticism or outrage from relatives. 

What date were you born? - you can leave off the year if you like.~I'm a capricorn, born January 7th. Stubborn as a goat!!!

Patti says: I'm on the cusp - January the 20th :)

Do you have a nickname?~My real name is Louise, after my mother and grandmother, but I was nicknamed Nikki early on--and that stuck.

Did you have a favorite toy as a child?~I had two stuffed elephants--Fanty and Cornelious. My daughters still have them, although they're falling apart!

An early childhood memory~thinking I saw a fairy in the corner of my bedroom--the beginning of my writing career?

Do you ever write in your PJ’s?~ absolutely!
Patti says: Me too!

What are your pet peeves?~I don't like to be interrupted when I'm writing. 

Any pets that you would like to tell us about, share a pic?~I have a beautiful cat and dog...I would be happy to share a pic!

White wine or red?~I prefer red but I'll drink white if that's all there is!

Coffee or tea?~Coffee, (latte) but I also like black tea with milk and honey...

So you like to cook?  Do you have a favorite food?~I've grown lazy about cooking--just ordered a cookbook, The Meditteranean Diet--I love pasta and used to say that's all I cooked when they were little! (not true)

Vanilla or chocolate ice-cream?~I like both

What do you normally eat for breakfast, of do you skip it and get straight to work?~I usually make an egg and toast and sometimes I add spinach to the pan...this is after coffee, of course...

What are 4 things you never leave home without (apart from keys, money and phone)?~purse which contains my lipsticks, a writing pad and pen and water...

Sleep in or get up early?~I'm usually up by 6:30 or 7:00...

Laptop or desktop for writing?~ I work at my desk..

Your favorite gadget -~espresso machine 

Where and when do you prefer to do your writing?~I write at all times---my desk seems to be my default setting...

Your thoughts on receiving book reviews - the good and the bad - ~I just got my first 1 star...I wasn't upset, just surprised because I didn't agree with the reviewer...I'm okay with constructive criticism but of course I want people to love my books!

If you were deserted on an island, who are 3 famous people you would want with you?~Einstein, Groucho Marks and Tom Robbins or possible Carl Jung

Where is one place in the world that you would really love to visit someday?~I want to go to Australia and New Zealand

One of your favorite quotes -~don't believe everything you think

List 3 books you just recently read and would recommend?~Mariana and The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley, A Discovery of Witches, by Deborah Harkness

List 3 of your favorite movies?~The King of Hearts, Sophie's Choice, Avatar

An actor or a book character you have a crush on -~Vigo Mortenson

What is a movie or TV show that you watched just recently and really enjoyed?~I loved the series, Battlestar Gallactica

If your book was made into a TV series or Movie, what actors would you like to see playing your characters?  Feel free to add pics.~I've thought about this because I can see my books as a movie...(when I write I see everything as though it's a movie) Bonnie Wright might work for Maeve, my main character in Book II and Book III--the main guy, Harold, Maeve's boyfriend...maybe Tom Welling? He has to have a toughness but also be easy-going

Where can your readers stalk you?~

Is your book in Print, ebook or both?~The Moonstone and Saille, the Willow are both in paper as well as kindle--I'm working on getting them on Smashwords, Nook and KOBO

Editorial Reviews


Cindy Taylor--AllbooksReview: ...This is truly an enchanting story written in a magical way with descriptions that flow like a paintbrush bringing a blank canvas to life....there is an air of mystery and the unknown throughout the whole story that kept me turning the pages non-stop...I'm so excited this is the first book of a trilogy, and I'm going to find it very difficult to wait for the second book....This story held me spellbound from cover to cover and I highly recommend it.

From the Author

I began this book for my 'fun' writing while I was working on a more serious work. From the moment I started the story I felt like it was being written through me. I love the story and the characters who appeared on the page and took over my life for the several years I spent on this project. 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...