29 April 2011

Book Review: Shadow Path by P.L. Blair

Book Title: Shadow Path
Author: P.L. Blair
Genre: Fantasy - Adventure - Mystery
Publisher: Studio See Publishing

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Kat Morales and her Elf partner, Tevis, are police detectives in Corpus Christi, Texas, assigned to solve the mystery of the dead ogre found stabbed with an enchanted sword. The world isn't the same since the portals opened between our world and the "Otherside" few years back. Seeing an elf with his pointy ears is a normal thing, maybe not accepted by all, but normal nonetheless. However, crimes now (sometimes) involve magic and a good portion of--what was called before the portals opened--the supernatural.Although "Shadow Path" is book one in the fantasy adventure Portals Series by P.L. Blair, it is the third book I read in the series. Luckily, each book was written to stand alone, with enough hints to drive you back to read the other books but without missing the story you're reading at the time.
Shadow Path has some enlightening moments when mythology met P.L. Blair's imagination half way. An intriguing read, indeed. It was quite entertaining to research Greek mythology to find out where Blair's creativity sparked and changed things or even added to them. Reading how Arvandus and Gairth met Kat and Tevis was like meeting old friends after a long time; I had goosebumps all over my arms. I smiled.
Dragons, elves, pixies, and many other creatures I haven't heard of make an appearance in this book. If you are a teen or older, interested in fantasy and its fantastical creatures, myths, and whodunit mysteries, then Shadow Path is for you.

21 April 2011

Guest Blog - It’s the genre that makes the monster

Author Marc Vun Kannon takes over Vivid Sentiments with his guest blog: It’s the genre that makes the monster.
Over to you, Marc!

My latest novel, St. Martin’s Moon, is a werewolf adventure set on a lunar colony.
When I got the idea for St. Martin’s Moon I originally envisioned it as a horror/mystery novel, and started writing it as such. I was two chapters in before I realized something frightening: I could not write horror. Or mystery. The essence of horror is setting and tone, both of which are usually rendered with description, and I hate description. In my first book I discovered that I didn’t want to write it any more than I wanted to read it, so I didn’t. I created a style of writing which presents the setting as seen through some character’s eyes, a dynamic style better suited for Fantasy and SF than horror.
I continued writing St. Martin’s Moon as a paranormal instead, and a futuristic paranormal at that. It’s remarkable what changes can come over a creature when you shift genres on it.
I’ve never been a big fan of the transformation of the classic monsters—vampires, werewolves, zombies—into some sort of heroic paranormal characters. I see it as some sort of cheat, creating a creature that looks like a vampire superficially and calling it a vampire just to cash in on the name. Or perhaps taking a fairly standard vampire idea and changing it just a little, bending it to fill the needs of the story and not the other way around. It’s easier to respect a story that doesn’t have to play fast and loose with the rules, whether it’s horror, SF, or what have you. (And yes, I’m aware that genres don’t have ‘rules’ as such, but giving him some special ability/weakness just so he can use it to save/lose the day at the end is bad practice, in my book.) So why would I do it myself?
Simple answer is, I didn’t. I didn’t write a novel about the monster, I wrote a novel about the man. The man who bears the curse, and has to live with it because he cannot die with it. The man who has to kill them because he can’t save them. There’s more than one kind of curse. The werewolves stayed as close to the myth (well, the Universal myth anyway) as I could keep them: vicious, bestial, monstrous. No pack structure or alpha-male angstiness. Except that this was a paranormal, enough like Sci Fi that my publisher billed it that way to make readers and booksellers happy. If this had been a horror story I could have just taken the curse for granted. That’s what curses are, after all, unknown and therefore scary.
The unknown doesn’t fly so well in SF. I had to able to explain the monster, at least a little bit. Which meant they had to be explainable. I didn’t really want to explain them, if I didn’t have to, turn a grand horrific blood curse into a disease, or a neurosis. Where’s the poetry in that? Plus, if I could explain it, I’d have to cure it. Or something. What something? No clue.* This little problem held up the writing for quite some time, as you can imagine. Not to mention the fact that I wanted a happy ending for someone. I needed something with at least a possibility of poetry in it.
Then a miracle occurred. The story shifted sideways and became a paranormal romance, at least a little bit. Speaking of poetry…
*But I did explain it, eventually. The only book I know of that asks Why the Moon? and gets away with it.

St. Martin's Moon is coming 5/15/2011 from Echelon Press
The Moon is haunted, but the werewolves don't know that!

About Marc Vun Kannon:
Like many writers, I started when a story came along and decided that I should write it. Don't ask me why. Others followed, until now I'm afraid to go out of the house with a recorder or notebook in my hand. But I show them, I refuse to write the same story twice!

16 April 2011

Intricate Entanglement - Guest Trailer!

Thought of sharing this small news:

Intricate Entanglement's trailer is a guest trailer over on author Toni V Sweeney's website. Here's the link:

I think this came to be after I shared BookGirl's review on some yahoo groups.


15 April 2011

The Opinion of a Book Addict

BookGirl has reviewed Intricate Entanglement. This is her opinion:

"This book reads like several books in one, there is the main story about the reporter and the side stories of the people living in the asylum. I was drawn to this book by only watching the booktrailer. I was inmediately interested and I wasn’t disappointed.
The story chills you to the bone, the side stories had an eerie feeling tot hem. The people had such normal lifes before they were comitted. But one thing sets them off and even after hearing the stories you don’t know what that is. The asylum itself is creepy and the ending send shivers down my spine.
Amazing book that leaves you breathless, this is one Asylum you don’t even want to visit because I have the feeling that onces your in you won’t ever come out!"

I got 5 ratties :-D

Here's the link to the actual review.

05 April 2011

Book Trailer Creation

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