Saturday, June 30, 2012

Indie Author Reviews

The area of Indie Authors is amazing. Since starting my blog, I have had requests from authors to review their books. Two self-published authors with their requests have blown my socks off. The first one is Abria Mattina and her book Wake and the other is Kerrigan Byrne and her novella Unspoken. Because of them, I have decided to read and review at least one self-published book a week. I will post these reviews each Saturday. 

**Note: If you are an independent/self-published author and are interested in being featured, please send me an email. Information regarding submissions can be found under the review policy tab at the top of the page.

So to begin this weekly meme, I have reposted the reviews Wake and Unspoken.

Book Review: Wake by Abria Mattina

Title: Wake
Author: Abria Mattina
Genre: Young Adult
Publish Date: September 2011
Source: Received copy from author
Personal Rating: 5 stars

Eighteen isn’t too young to run your life into the ground, but it’s not too old to fix it, either. The desire for change drives Willa Kirk from St. John’s, Newfoundland back to hometown of Smiths Falls, Ontario, away from her mistakes and the place where her sister died. She’s looking for a place to settle and rebuild, but Jem Harper just wants to get out of town, back to the life he knew before cancer. By letting the tragedies in their lives define them, they are both dying a little more every day. Welcome to the wake.

My Review:
I love books written from the main characters points of view, alternating between each character, but continuing with the story. This book was written very well. There was a heading for each of the characters, but then it was also broken into days like a diary. However, there was not that feel of a diary, to me it felt just like large paragraph breaks with headings. Done very well! There was not a lot of overlap between the characters, except when there needed to be. This balance was very well done.

The book starts January 19th. Jem is in remission and there is a new girl in his school, Willa. This story mainly revolves around these two and is a beautiful love story.

Jem was very likeable. The author created a strong male character who may or may not be in a weak situation. Depends on how you look at him or the situation. Jem was trying to return to “normal” but normal may not be what it used to be. He grew to understand himself, what he used to be, and where he was now. He also was learning how to shape himself better.

Willa was a very strong female character. She was not afraid of Jem and what he had gone through, even though she really should have been afraid of what she was getting herself into. Willa also has her own struggles she is dealing with, past and present. Learning to work through those, she helps many others in the book.

Elise is the younger sister who did a brave thing by being a donor for her brother. While not an easy task, she knew she wanted to do it without question. She is growing up and wants to prove she is old enough for grown up things. Of course, her older brother is very protective. Elise returns this favor by still being his protector and provide comfort to him.

Ava is one of Jem’s friends from Ottawa. I really liked her when I first met her and that’s why I wanted to put her in the review. She comes to visit him and “set him straight”. She does have some similar character traits as Willa, but Willa is a little more polished.

I loved all the characters and their situations. This story, while it is 759 pages, did not ever keep me from wanting to turn page after page after page. Very enjoyable read!

What to Read Next?
Choose any book by Jodi Picoult. This writing and story reminded me of all the Jodi Picoult books I have read.

Book Review: Unspoken  

by Kerrigan Byrne
Genre: Historical Romance
Published: March 2012
Personal Rating: 5 stars

He's cursed with eternal silence...

Roderick MacLauchlan is death for hire. Blessed by an ancient Deity with Berserker rage, he has the strength of ten men. Cursed by a malicious enemy, he's incapable of speech. A desperate clan war rages around him and a malevolent adversary lurks in the darkness, calling for blood.

Evelyn Woodhouse is an English refugee with a dangerous secret. She has the ability to see the outcome of tomorrow's battle and knows they're on the wrong side of it. When a doomed and silent mercenary rescues her from a fate worse than death, it seems he has his own plans for her. This is his last night alive and she's never been able to defy destiny.

My Review:
I thoroughly enjoyed this novella. This was well written. Not entirely comfortable with erotic romances, but having read a few, this book was not trashy. The author uses descriptive words that to me evoked a feeling rather than an entirely visual romance scene and did not overdo the details.

The premise of this story was great. Being a short story I thought many things would be rushed or left undone at the end, and this was so not the case. The set up with the scene in the beginning of the book and all of the characters, I was able to immediately connect with Evelyn. I loved her character. She is sweet, maybe a little naive, and kind of unsure of herself at times. The author was also able to describe a tough but sweet hunk of a warrior.

This is a debut novella for this author. The sequel should be out in May 2012. I cannot wait!!
Verdict: A definite read for all romance readers, but remember it is definitely on the “hot” side.

1 comment :

  1. Thats great that you enjoyed both of these. They do sound good. That's why I enjoy blook blogging, you get to discover authors you may not have otherwise.