A slightly muddled YA Contemporary Fantasy that nevertheless shows some promise.
Brother witches Josh and Chris have sacrificed a great deal for their magical responsibilities. Their aunt, Kathy, is the only family they have left, and together they must face their enemies to keep them from targeting any more victims. But when Kathy is put in the hospital after an attack, the boys are a witch short.
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SERIES INFO: This is Book #1 of the "Under the Moon" trilogy. The ebook of #2 The Full Moon is scheduled to be released on 2/6/16. The audiobook has been delayed by technical difficulties. According to the author there will be at least one more book, The Harvest Moon, which will be released in 8/16.
From the beginning, there were several things that made it hard to get in to. First were the ridiculous names of the villains (it was commented on later, but was distracting). Second was the very matter of fact way in which the dramatic events of the epilogue were narrated (it did get better). And there were occasional odd phrases and other awkwardness in the writing.
The main thing that kept this book from getting a higher rating was the overabundance of antagonists. I kept losing track of who was who and what their motivations were. And the plot became overly complicated as a result. There were also several plot elements that made me think, “huh?” (e.g. You tried to sacrifice my kids and I’m a little mad at you…now on with life.) And I needed more backstory on Holly and past events in Salem (NY). Frankly, I think it should have been split up in to 2 books with the antagonists and confrontations divided accordingly.
So why am I reviewing it on my blog? Because I did like the 3 central YA characters and saw a lot of potential in their stories. I would have liked a more focused book which included the elements of them coming into their powers, and trying to understand the morality of having these abilities, within a less frantic plot. The action scenes were well written until I lost track of the participants as they added up.
NARRATION: There is a slight hollow sound throughout / His “voices” and dialog were what he did best. / Listened on 1.25 speed (my usual)
I COULD HAVE DONE WITHOUT: the frequent swearing (it lessened in the later parts of the book)
OTHER WARNINGS: There is quite a bit of violence and killing (including by the protagonists)
Narrator Impact: MIXED
I received this book free in return for an honest review, courtesy of Audiobook Blast.
The Blood Moon by David Neth; read by Nathan Weiland; produced independently in 2015 / Length: 6 hrs 35 min (Unabr) / Available through Audible & Amazon plus iTunes.
BONUS AUTHOR INTERVIEW
How did you choose/come up with your lead character(s) name(s)?
The two main characters, Josh and Chris, are teenagers in The Blood Moon, so I wanted to pick “normal” names for them to have. However, I wanted their last name to be something a little more unique. I wanted it to be discernible from other names, but also sound like a normal name. Originally, I chose “Lewis” as their last name, but that never really sat well with me. I used to work at a pet store and we asked for donations around the holidays and people got to put up little paw prints with their names on them if they donated. I spotted the name “Harper” on one of them and knew instantly that that was Josh and Chris’s last name.
Tell us something about yourself that we might not already know.
I want to open my own bookstore. I’ve been putting together a business plan and meeting with certain people in my hometown to try to make it a reality in the near future. I would love to be my own boss and have a portion of the publishing industry right here in Batavia. I would be the author, publisher, and bookseller. A pretty cool idea!
Audiobook / eBook / Paperbooks? Which is your favorite and why?
I like print books the most. To be honest, before I started working on the audiobook for The Blood Moon, I had never listened to an audiobook before! It was especially weird to hear my own words narrated to me!
I have read ebooks before and they just don’t grab me like a print book does. I get too distracted with the technology in my hand that I don’t focus on the book. Print books definitely help me focus. Plus, I like to watch my library grow!
How long did it take you to write this book?
The Blood Moon actually took nine years from first draft to publication. I started it when I was 15, so I obviously didn’t know what I was doing at the time, nor did I have a vision for what I wanted to do with the book or the series. It was also before the Kindle was released and ebooks really became popular. Self-publishing meant storing boxes and boxes of print books in your garage hoping someone will buy it. The Full Moon took less time. Only about a year. My third book, The Harvest Moon (out August 2016), has been my fastest-written book so far. By the time I really started writing it to the time I finished editing it, it was only about six months. Hopefully my future books will be even quicker!
What is the hardest thing about writing? The easiest?
The funny thing with writing is, sometimes I love being in the midst of the story and having to figure out all the details and show them on the page and other times I find it such a drag!
If you would’ve asked me a year ago, I would’ve told you that writing the first draft is the hardest, and it can be. But now I think just the sheer number of edits I have to do to get it publishable is the worst part. By the time I publish the book, I’m tired of it and have already moved on to next year’s projects!
My favorite thing about putting together any story is the plotting. I get to piece together all of my ideas into short little chapter notes that will help me write the first draft. I recently did that with my latest book and I just kept twisting more and more details and plot lines that will make writing it challenging. But, if it’s done right, hopefully the reader will really enjoy the story!
Readers can head to my website at www.davidnethbooks.com to learn more about me. And please, sign up for my mailing list once you’re there to be the first to receive news on upcoming releases!