Here in South Carolina, we are in the midst of an ice storm. No, not snow, but ice. I hope the power stays on.
I haven’t posted much here lately, and not at all so far in 2014. So, Happy New Year to you all, if you are still out there.
At the tail end of 2013 I was rewriting my novel, Cory’s Way. All was going well. I was making significant progress. Then all was lost. Most of the rewrites vanished one evening when I went to transfer them from the memory stick I had been using to my computer. The memory stick had died.
I almost cried. Seriously. I had written two completely new chapters and rewritten 16 others. If you are a writer, you do one of a few things. A) You drink for several days, drowning your sorrows at the loss of so much work. B) You start over and say, ‘hey, I can do better than that.’ C) You sit back, get bummed and don’t write anything or work on anything for almost two months.
I went with the door lettered C.
Then I woke one morning after having a dream. Yes, I had a dream. It was a vision of the cover of my novel, Her Cure. I was inspired. I spent the next week working on the novel, doing a first edit and changing things around, deleting others. Then I did something I have never done. I asked for beta readers. Surprisingly, several people wanted to do it. I was scared. Intimidated, even.
Beta copies were sent out. I’ve heard back from one who has completed their read over and has sent me a hardcopy of her thoughts. They are VERY GOOD thoughts. I’m chomping at the bit to get started on the second pass through. I think I will start that on the 15th of February. I know the other beta readers are not finished, but that’s okay for now. I have plenty to go on based on the one’s thoughts. And I can go back and cross check everything the others say. I just want to get started.
My fingers are crossed for a spring or early summer release of Her Cure. Am I going traditional with this? Probably not, but I honestly don’t know at this point.
In other news I finally submitted two short stories a couple weeks ago. It is the first time in over six months that I sent work out.
Rejections (or acceptances) forthcoming.
The Boy went to turn the light on in The Girl’s room.
The Girl: Don’t turn my light on.
The Boy: Why not? Is your life all dark and gloomy?
My Review of Nameless, The Darkness Comes, by Mercedes M. Yardley:
I think I start just about every review with a caveat: I am not a book reviewer. But I am a writer, and reviews are important to us, so I try and review all the books I read.
Now that that is out the way, let’s get on with this, shall we?
Being a fan of the small press, I often look for books that interest me based on their book blurbs. I’m one of those readers who will purchase books based solely on whether I like the blurb or not. The blurb for this book was short and to the point, and it interested me for two reasons: One it was short and to the point and two it was by a writer I like.
LUNA MASTERSON SEES DEMONS. She has been dealing with the demonic all her life, so when her brother gets tangled up with a demon named Sparkles, ‘Luna the Lunatic’ rolls in on her motorcycle to save the day. Armed with the ability to harm demons, her scathing sarcasm, and a hefty chip on her shoulder, Luna gathers the most unusual of allies, teaming up with a green-eyed heroin addict and a snarky demon ‘of some import.’ After all, outcasts of a feather should stick together…even until the end
I finished Mercedes M. Yardley’s debut novel, Nameless, The Darkness Comes, the first book in the Bone Angel Trilogy, last night. Being a fan of Yardley’s short stories, I was excited to see her write a novel, and I was one of those folks who bought it as soon as it was released. Yeah, I’m cool that way.
If you read the blurb posted above, you learn that this book is about Luna, a young woman cursed with the ability to see demons. Poor Luna. Why not Unicorns or fairies? I guess we can’t choose our curses. But there is so much more to Luna Masterson’s demon eyes. I’m not going to give the story away here, but I will note there are some very important characters that I think Yardley did a good job bringing to life: Her brother, Seth, is kind of a wimp (understatement of the year, folks), even when he’s trying to be tough. Reed Taylor, her love interest, and Mouth, a demon who is not whole-heartedly out to get Luna. And the Tiptoe Shadow. Yeah, that’s right, the Tiptoe Shadow. Cool name, eh?
I enjoyed the way Mouth and the Tiptoe Shadow were developed—she seems to have a knack for creating demons with mmmm personalities. Yeah, the mmmm is intentional.
Nameless had a few twists and turns in it, a couple of which I didn’t really see coming, which is a good thing. There were a couple of reveals that Yardley played on and, in the end, they were important to Luna’s character building, though, honestly, I don’t think, as a reader, I realized it until the story was over. That, too, is a good thing.
Also, Nameless is told by Luna, in the first person, and the voice holds true all the way to the end. Through all the events Luna’s voice was hers and not someone else’s, whether she was angry or sad or happy (though that was a rare moment or two), Yardley kept Luna’s voice, how she speaks, how she thinks, how she acts and reacts, consistent. Yes, another very good thing.
Now, this would not be a real review, an honest one, if I didn’t point out a couple things that I thought were off with the book. There were a few moments where words were omitted or added in places they shouldn’t have been. These are things I notice in a lot of books these days and they are easy mistakes to make. Even during the editing phase, these things happen. I can overlook those, but others can’t.
The story takes place over several months—I didn’t realize this until the end of the book, which is probably just me. I thought the story took place over a week or two, not months.
No, I’m not going to tell you about the story, but about the one thing I thought was left as a loose end. Maybe it was intentional, but I don’t think so. Near the end of the book, Seth is told he needs to be strong, stronger than he has ever been, which really means, just don’t be a wimp, okay, Seth? However, that never came to be. I kept expecting him to bust in and save the day, but he didn’t. For me, and again, this may just be me, I count the writer mentioning something like, ‘dude, you have to be stronger than ever before’ as a promise the writer makes to the reader: Dear reader, I am mentioning this because I will come back to it later in the story. There were several little promises made throughout Nameless and all of them, except for this particular one, were kept.
**END SPOILER ALERT**
All in all, Nameless, The Darkness Comes, did not disappoint me. It had an easy flowing and consistent voice, and the storyline was solid. The main character (whose name I believe is short for Lunatic) was believable, as were her supporting cast. There was a resolution to the problem and a set up for book two at the end. There is violence. There is anger. There is love. There is sadness. There is desperation.
I look forward to book two of the Bone Angel Trilogy. For my rating system, I give it four and a half bones out of five.
Pick it up. Give it a read. Enjoy.
Until we meet again, my friends…