Friday, May 02, 2008

Blackness Tower

Blackness TowerCarl, Lillian Stewart. 2008. Blackness Tower.
Review by Becky Laney.

What can I say about Blackness Tower? On one hand, it did keep me reading. I didn't read it all in one sitting, I read it in three, but it was always pleasant to get back to. I liked reading it. It wasn't a not-that again experience. It held my interest for the most part. And I wasn't ever bored with it. On the other hand, it was one of those almost books. Maybe you know the kind. There were some things I liked about the novel, but there was just something about it that kept me from loving it. Something that kept me from getting excited--really excited about it. It was almost a romance novel, but not quite. It was almost a fantasy book, but not quite. Okay, that last one isn't really fair. But fantasy isn't the right word either. It was all about the paranormal. Mostly. So it's a paranormal-mystery-romance hybrid. An American woman comes to Scotland, comes to explore Black Ness Tower because she's been having dreams and visions. There she meets three men. All seem to be attracted to her, seeking her out in some ways, but all three seem cloaked in mystery as well. All loosely-connected to the same mission she's on. And then there are the spooky girl characters. Essentially the main character is confused and frustrated and has trouble figuring out who to trust and what's really going on. As I said, it kept me reading. But somehow it was a bit disappointing over all. Not terrible. Not awful. But definitely just an okay read for me. I don't regret reading it. I wanted to know what happened. But the way the mystery comes out, the way it all unfolds, it just left me personally a little empty. I think I started out connected with the characters, and then somewhere in the middle, I became slightly disconnected.

Your response, your reaction could be completely different than mine. Especially if you're really into paranormal romances. Though it lacks smut. If it had been a true paranormal romance, then there would have been some smut.

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

3 comments:

Chris 4:31 PM  

Ah well...this one wasn't working too well for me either. Thanks for reviewing it though!

Bookfool 7:44 PM  

I'm not a fan of smut, myself. I like innocent romance. But, I'd trust your judgment if I saw this one (and Chris's). I've found that your favorites often jibe with mine pretty well.

Becky 7:50 PM  

Bookfool,

This is one of the books that is neither here nor there. It isn't "romance" enough to be romance. There isn't enough development of the characters to really fall for each other. I mean not really. They're both just accidentally a part of paranormal phenomenon. I guess what I"m trying to say is that it didn't have chemistry--whether there was smut or no smut. A writer can keep it perfectly clean but still have chemistry. This I thought lacked chemistry. And to read it as straight paranormal fiction, it had a bit too much on the romance side of things. You know the whole "who should I pick, who should I trust" thing...

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

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1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
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4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
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