The Wolves of Midwinter

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

(Pocket Book Blog Tour)

Regretfully this book's subject material or plot did not completely enrapture me in the slightest. Usually with most books, that detached feeling's pacified by interesting plot developments within the story. Yet even when I attempted through the book's mid section, I still felt completely disinterested with the book's overall plot. For the book seem focused upon Devyn's desire for Bride Mckell. While there were a few moments within the novel that were fascinating; particularly information about the universe the author created within the novel.

Now many shall derive different opinions about this story, based on their overall opinion regarding romance tales. I specially prefer romance with a focus upon passionate emotions rather than external desire, where each character desires one's body over their souls. With that, my assessment's not entirely fair and the writing overall was solid, nothing outstanding or revolutionary. It was enough to capture the reader's interest and carry them through the entire book.

My recommendation for this book would be forwarded to those who prefer more Harlequin esque romance novels with a fantasy bent. For me, I'd highly prefer more action or internal struggles over the main character's nature, rather than his passionate love. Or a balance of both those elements with enough action to provide for an insanely enthralling novel.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Recently I've received news from my artist that the cover design for Death Seer's been completed. For all who do not know of this project. One of my friends and I are involved with creating a web comic all based upon a story that I'd been plotting for nearly three years. After all the arduous effort of writing so many emotional sequences and inner monologues, I'm beginning to see the result of my labor with these cover draft, still extremely rough in it's appearance. As its lacking color and final details of the protagonist's character model. For all here, I'm posting the "excerpt," which was written in narrative form, though the rest of the story's written in script form, for ease of transfer for the artist.

Warning!!! For all those reading most and nearly all the material within my stories have extreme gore or other suggestive content. My story's are not being bowdlerized in any manner, though I'm a Christian. Basically with my story, I'm proving one can write dark stories while still allowing the light to eek through. Though as many know me, I'm an extremely left Christian, as opposed with others.

“Train three shall be departing in around three minutes, please have your ticket stubs and photo “ID” for boarding,” a cacophonous voice reverberated throughout the chasms of the subway’s seemly endless passages, lined with brayed, sullied bricks. Occupied businessmen garbed with black and blue suit coats dashed expediently to their assigned boarding platform. The faces of every person rushing to their respective places shared a commonality, a vacant stare, void of any indiscernible emotion.

“Watch where you’re going, damnit,” a grizzled old man of short stature grunted while walking feebly into the metallic car of the train.

“Sorry…” I murmured, walking aimlessly towards the pair of stairs, located adjacent to the train, readying to depart from the platform to the next to pick up the next influx of passengers who all had a key destination in mind, whether scrutinizing it intently or subconsciously allowing it to maneuver their every move. Unlike these denizens, I was a free roamer both metaphorically and implicitly. My destination tonight remained looming overhead, just like the fractured light bulbs, providing light within an otherwise impenetrably dark subway tunnel.

Upon my lanky form were my bare essentials: a dirt sodden black t-shirt, black linen pants doused with the fleeting drips of water raining down from the dank ceiling panes of the subway tunnels, easily defining me as a destitute with no real intention or lucid meaning within their lives. Abandoned by both my parents only a mere two years ago, I’ve always lived my life wandering haplessly from each train platform, seeking solace in an otherwise meaningless existence. But as long as people imbued my limited field of vision, then death always surrounded me.

As my blue irises remained affixed upon the old man, my field of vision suddenly reverted to a darkened room where the old man lay recumbent upon a four poster bed. Knives encircled his feeble form as dribble speckled down his wrinkly skin.

“My wife, I never had a wife to being with and most of my children perceive me to be a crazed recluse. Love… when I ever had love… Love was only a diversion, to detract from the righteous path. Well.. Now love has ensnared me and now death’s come elusively along with it.. Though always mutually connected,” the old man chided as he snatched the longest knife which lay splayed upon the bed.

Inaudibly I screamed for him to reconsider his actions. But as with all my visions, death remained inevitable and irreversible. With the knife in his right hand, the old man plunged it into his right artery and then resumed his tight grasp of the knife and cut downwards, etching the shape of a misconstrued heart upon the main antechamber of his heart.

“Sara…” the old man muttered his last words, wishing the woman who never reciprocated his feelings could have seen his contorted face and the blood profusely spluttered across his tobacco stained sheets.

Slowly I regained my composure and my field of vision slowly shriveled and returned me to “reality.” Grabbing the shoulder pads of my knapsack, my feet sloughed through the brown puddles of train platform as I avoided people’s glances, hoping to repress my keen sense of detecting death. My intended destination remained insensible for the time being, for the only thought looming within my mind was the instinct to avoid all human contact and anything which could possibly cast a reflection.

Though I’ve had many near death experiences in the sense of catching a glance upon my own inevitable demise; never have I’ve seen the entire visage of this image. Every element of my death fettered my being, even the mere thought of allowing me to see my own death incapacitated me. As such, I’ve always maintained my own personal oath of never allowing myself to catch glance of my own death. Of course this proclamation limited me from ever catching glance of my own facial features or hair color. The only person who’s ever described to me the way the rest of the world saw me was my mother.

“Sam, your hair is the color of fine mahogany, glittering in the rays of the setting sun and your eyes are an irrevocably beautiful shade of blue like the shimmering spectral of the ocean’s waves.” My mother would always caress my six year old form within all my memories as she whispered them into my ears while standing behind me, never revealing herself to me for fear of embracing me with death Death was a topic that she never wanted to broach. Every time I asked why she would never reveal herself to me, she would click her tongue against the rim of her mouth twice and her eyebrows would undulate. “Honey I’m right before you it’s that you’ve been equipped with special glasses in order to allow yourself to see only the physical properties of inanimate objects. You have a fatal form of blindness where you only see the outlines of these objects. But with these glasses, you’ll be able to see colors and shapes, but never see people like you and your mother.

How could I ever need glasses for blindness which I’ve never had? Why would she allow me to use an instrument which would display my death before my eyes in an unending loop? With my advance intellect, her diagnosis of my malady was highly improbable and utterly ludicrous and not based upon scientific knowledge. So after the first few days after my seventh birthday, I soon discovered my highly abhorred blemish; an aspect of myself which allowed Death to become an integral element of myself.

Though these memories happened over six years ago, the memory remained a lucid and irreplaceable part of my memory banks. At the time, my mother stood out in the garden, basking in the bath of sunlight radiating from the unseasonably sultry day. While my mother allowed the droplets of water to percolate upon the pistils of the poinsettias she’d been growing, I had unbolted the lock of the playpen where I’d been situated in. As the minuscule toes of my feet penetrated the beige carpet, permeating the wood floors of our small apartment; I caught a glance of my mother's long auburn hair billowing with the slight gusts of the spring air. My glance of her before her envisioned death was reminiscent of an angel with her smooth gestures and rueful smile.

Soon enough my vision altered and my mother stood within the kitchen of the house, preparing a cake for my seventeenth birthday. As she prepared the cake, I was presently situated within my locked room, tending to my academic obligations through virtual school as I had been unable to have any exposure to real people due to my disability. While my mother made a cake, a knife suddenly emerged from her right shoulder as a masked man, garbed in an outfit of complete black, demanded her surrender.

Glancing upon her blood drenched white apron, she fell aimlessly to the floor as the man succeeded in penetrating the pivotal regions of her neck, inoculating her. Watching the angel slowly fracturing before my eyes, tears ripped down my reddened cheeks as slowly the image darkened.

When I finally regained consciousness, my mother stood before me, her mouthing hanging agape, realizing whose death I’d obtained a teaser of. “Mo…m you’re alive, Are we in heaven?” I muttered, fiercely wiping the few remaining tears placated on my eyelids. Gaping at my mother’s chagrin, I resumed to my former catatonic stage and inverted my scrawny body upon my plastic red car bed decorated with red and blue stripes.

“No you’re still anchored safely on this Earth but you’ve finally realized your affliction. The erring of your vision which shall debilitate the quality of your life and exclude you from the many necessities for the sustainability of life for your eyes shall always remain closed to the light of the world but unveiled to the darkness which entrench upon our affinity of ourselves. As long as you never catch your reflection, the wings of life shall always remain unfurled for the world to marvel. Yet love shall never penetrate the deep trenches of your soul, forever you shall remain in solemnity until your wings scurf you off to a world where love’s a reality and not a dormant desire of your mind. “With her melodic voice, enthusing her words with grace, she left me alone to weep unceasingly through the night with my blanket constricted around my fragile form. As darkness exuded from the far stretches of my room and danced frivolously upon my pillow; I internally latched upon the last remains of faith in myself. Under my bed, the harsh stifled breaths of death scurried across the green nodes of my carpet, waiting unabated for my next encounter.

Details on trailer contest!!

Barry Lyga's prepping to release a sequel to "The Adventures of Fanboy and Gothgirl" on early October and in anticipation of that release, he has decided to begin a contest where one lucky winner could win an ARC copy of the sequel, Goth Girl Returns. For Further Details, click the link above!!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Honestly, my posts are widely sporadic though I'm aiming for my posts to be updated weekly as I've been joining more book blog alliances. And have even decided to make another blog, specially for reviewing secular titles. As many members of CSFF did not receive this month's book and being one of them, I'll be providing a link to the author's page for more interest, where there's a terse excerpt for creating buzz about the book.

Next month, expect to see a wide array of dialogue about Karen Hancock's newest novel within the last two months. As she was my introduction to the world of Christian Fiction and reinvigorated my appreciation for the genre on a whole; special attention shall be paid to her novel "Enclave." I'm three quarters through the book and especially impressed with Karen Hancock's improved writing. Mrs. Hancock really knows how to write as compared with other writers, especially a rather prolofic secular young adult writer who resides within the same state.

In August, Robin Parrish's book will be featured which looks very intriguing and being a fan of his works, I'm really stoked.

Book's Sequel: "Valley of the Shadow"
Author's Blog
Author's Website
Brandon Barr
Justin Boyer
Keanan Brand
Grace Bridges
Karri Compton
Amy Cruson
CSFF Blog Tour
Stacey Dale
D. G. D. Davidson
Jeff Draper
April Erwin
Karina Fabian
Alex Field
Beth Goddard
Todd Michael Greene
Ryan Heart
Christopher Hopper
Joleen Howell
Becky Jesse
Cris Jesse
Carol Keen
Krystine Kercher
Rebecca LuElla Miller
Eve Nielsen
John W. Otte
John Ottinger
Donita K. Paul
Epic Rat
Steve Rice
Crista Richey
Hanna Sandvig
Chawna Schroeder
James Somers
Speculative Faith
Rachel Starr Thomson
Robert Treskillard
Steve Trower
Fred Warren
Phyllis Wheeler