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Review: Slide by Michelle Congdon

Book Tour

Slide is one of those feel good novels that I would read when I am down in dumps. Michelle Congdon’s venture into the world of fiction has had a good start. From the delectable Ryan Fox to the perfect Evangeline, everything and everyone in this début novel is designed to please. Fast paced and slick Ryan Fox the hero of Slide might just develop a fan following amongst the young adult readers.

I would have enjoyed more if there was more of a mystery behind the various deaths in the novel because in the beginning there were hints that  the deaths were not just accidental. However after the slight build up of suspense the story changes its course. Elaborating on the suspense element might have added a little more depth to the story.

This was also the first time that I realized, I am older than the protagonists! It did come as a shock but adult contemporary novels are often written with a certain age group in mind. However, are present day 22 year olds thinking of marriage? Slide and its issues felt like going back in time. Other than the presence of cellular phones, Slide could have been an Adult Contemporary Novel from the 1980s. But, as I have mentioned before, Slide is a wonderful book to pick when you need lift.

Michelle Congdon has very graciously shared Ten Random Facts about Slide. So, I hope they satisfy your curiosity. If not, I am sure she’ll oblige to answer more questions in the comments section below.

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Ten Random Facts about Slide by Michelle Congdon

  1. Her grandparent’s real names are Caleb & Marina Sinclair.
  2. The first dream I ever had of Slide ended completely different. Derek was mean and evil!!
  3. I couldn’t think of a title for a very long time. At work one day, I ended up getting a group of my friends to think up of a name each. The best two were then put into a bucket and the winner was drawn out. Slide won, obviously. 🙂
  4. When I wrote in Ryan’s mother and sisters, the beautiful actress Monica Bellucci popped into my head, so she was my inspiration for the girls.
  5. The scene where Ryan’s dog almost bites him, happened in real life to my cousin while I was holding his small Chihuahua. Even though it was my cousin’s puppy, Toby, was quite fond of me and thought my cousin was trying to hurt me. I still laugh about it to this day.
  6. Just like Derek and Evangeline, my friends and I watched re-runs of Will and Grace when we were younger. We also watched re-runs of Friends and the hilarious Australian comedy, Kath and Kim. We would spend entire weekends without moving away from the television.
  7. All the re-writes were because Ryan had something funnier to say.
  8. The twins, Willah and Hunter, were the last characters to be written into the story. I had almost reached the end when Hunter popped into my head. He wants a story of his own, and so does his sister!!
  9. Even though a friend of mine inspired Ryan’s character, and also some of my favourite TV shows, all I picture when I think about him is the extremely delicious model, David Gandy. Swoon!!

There you have it 10 random facts 🙂 Have any more questions? Send them my way and I’ll try my best to answer them. M Xx

About the Author

AuthorMichelle Congdon resides in Sydney, Australia. She has Dalmatian named Jett, who to this day continues to hold an 8 year grudge against her after she had to leave him with her parents when she moved to the big city- this only proves animals are much like their owners. Michelle enjoys reading books of all sorts of genre’s, watching way too many movies and TV shows (and Disney cartoons), singing out aloud to her favourite hits and going on adventures involving food and travel. Michelle is loud, talks a lot and shares an ever-growing list of fictional husbands with a friend. From when she was a small girl, she has always had an over active imagination and has tried to put it to good use by sharing her stories with anyone willing to listen.

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Heritage (The Grimoire Saga #3) by S.M.Boyce

HeritageKara Magari isn’t normal, even by Ourea’s standards—and in a world of shape-shifters and soul stealers, that’s saying something. To the royalty, she’s a loose cannon. To the masses, she’s a failure. But Kara’s arrival in Ourea started a war, and she’s going to end it. An ancient isen named Stone takes an interest in Kara’s training, and it turns out he has more answers than he originally led her to believe. In an effort to unearth a secret that might end the bloodshed, Kara instead discovers an ugly truth about her family—and how much she has in common with an infamous mass-murderer.

Braeden Drakonin has slowly rebuilt his life after the betrayal that tore it apart. His father wants him dead, and frankly, his so-called allies wouldn’t mind that either. Private alliances are formed. Secrets are sold. Tension is driving the armies apart. A single battle will end this war, and it’s coming. Braeden may be a prince, but it will take more than that to survive. He must take the fight to his father’s door—and win.

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Heritage (The Grimoire Saga, #3)Heritage by S.M. Boyce

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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Heritage is all about life lessons and inheritance. Kara, finally learns to be a hero and is no longer the social outcast of the masses and the scapegoat of Ourea’s rulers. Boyce surpasses herself in the skilful manipulation of characters and it leaves you wondering, who is good or evil? or, how many shades of grey are there? As Kara finds out, at an expense, heroes are not knights in shining armour, their heroism depends on perception and the telling of the story.

Heritage is also all about relationships and unlike the previous two of the Grimoire Saga, Boyce has concentrated on developing relationships more than weaving the fantasy world. In a way Heritage is more of Paranormal Romance than Fantasy Fiction. Whether, Heritage will set a tone, for the rest of the series, is yet to be seen.

However, the slower pace is probably the lull before the storm. The forces of Ourea are gathering and changing sides swiftly, like a rising crescendo before an impending war. Every character has their own agenda and Boyce makes it all very believable. You can actually relate to some of the crises and recognize the reasons for personal vendettas.

On the whole Illusion promises a lot of drama and action in Fall 2014. Can’t wait to see what happens next!

S.M. BoyceInternational Amazon Bestseller. Fantasy Author. Twitter addict. Book Blogger. Geek. Sarcastic. Gooey. Odd. Author of the action-packed Grimoire Saga S.M. Boyce is a novelist who loves ghosts, magic, and spooky things. She prefers loose-leaf tea, reads far too many books, and is always cold. She’s married to her soul mate and couldn’t be happier. Her B.A. in Creative Writing qualifies her to serve you french fries. Boyce likes to update her blog a few times each week so that you have something to wake you up in the morning.

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Giveaway:

One Lucky Winner will get a Signed Copy of Lichgates (Grimoire Saga #1) by S.M.Boyce.

Giveaway Open to US Residents Only.

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Treason (The Grimoire Saga #2) by S.M.Boyce

TreasonKara Magari ignited a war when she stumbled into Ourea and found the Grimoire: a powerful artifact filled with secrets. To protect the one person she has left, she strikes a deal that goes against everything she believes in. But things don’t go as planned.

Braeden Drakonin can no longer run from who—and what —he is. He has to face the facts. He’s a prince. He’s a murderer. He’s a wanted man. And after a betrayal that leaves him heartbroken, he’s out for blood. To survive, both Kara and Braeden must become the evil each has grown to hate.

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Treason (The Grimoire Saga, #2)Treason by S.M. Boyce

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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Treason starts right where we left Kara and Braedon in Lichgates and is very fast paced. Boyce does not spend too much time with further descriptions and plunges right into the story. When I finished Lichgates I expected certain turns that the story might take in Treason. But I was surprised and delighted to find unforeseen twists in the plot. While Lichgates was a brilliant debut novel with stunning descriptions and imagination, Treason showcases Boyce’s skills in character development and storytelling. She is exceptionally good at creating villainous characters. While Carden’s villainy will leave you outraged, the others are plotting, scheming and sometimes normal people.

What I also liked about Boyce’s style is that she rarely leaves any questions unanswered for too long. You don’t have to wait till the end of the series to find out what was left for Kara by her father. Moreover Kara matures into a powerful figure and Braeden stops being confused all the time. Romance and relationships play a large role in Treason and I believe it sets a tone for future books in the series. Another character, who develops into a pivotal role is Twin. While reading Lichgates I formed certain opinions about her and I am sure all readers will, but Twin’s role in Treason is quite different from what I had expected. To avoid spoilers, I’ll just say, I am still expecting Twin to become a character with more shades of grey.

The versatility of Boyce’s storytelling is revealed by the fact that she doesn’t have too many obvious cliffhangers holding the plot together. Instead, she has new characters with their own twists in the tale. The political nature and the feuds make Ourea really believable but I couldn’t help drawing parallels with real world situations. As a result the underlying tension and strain in the book is quite palpable and makes it a faster read. I finished reading Treason faster than Lichgates!

I would really like to ask Boyce, whether she considers playing chess akin to writing the Grimoire Saga. Treason reminded me of a convoluted game of strategy with pawns in a major role. I would recommend Treason to lovers of fantasy fiction, but it is essential to read Lichgates first and absolutely vital to read Heritage, if you don’t want to lose your mind, wondering, what happens next?

S.M. BoyceInternational Amazon Bestseller. Fantasy Author. Twitter addict. Book Blogger. Geek. Sarcastic. Gooey. Odd. Author of the action-packed Grimoire Saga S.M. Boyce is a novelist who loves ghosts, magic, and spooky things. She prefers loose-leaf tea, reads far too many books, and is always cold. She’s married to her soul mate and couldn’t be happier. Her B.A. in Creative Writing qualifies her to serve you french fries. Boyce likes to update her blog a few times each week so that you have something to wake you up in the morning.

Connect with the Author:

Giveaway:

One Lucky Winner will get a Signed Copy of Lichgates (Grimoire Saga #1) by S.M.Boyce.

Giveaway Open to US Residents Only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Lichgates (The Grimoire Saga #1) by S.M.Boyce

Grimoire Saga #1Kara Magari is about to discover a beautiful world full of terrifying things—Ourea. Kara, a college student still reeling from her mother’s recent death, has no idea the hidden world of Ourea even exists until a freak storm traps her in a sunken library. With no way out, she opens an ancient book of magic called the Grimoire and unwittingly becomes its master, which means Kara now wields the cursed book’s untamed power. Discovered by Ourea’s royalty, she becomes an unwilling pawn in a generations-old conflict—a war intensified by her arrival. In this world of chilling creatures and betrayal, Kara shouldn’t trust anyone… but she’s being hunted and can’t survive on her own. She drops her guard when Braeden, a native soldier with a dark secret, vows to keep her safe. And though she doesn’t know it, her growing attraction to him may just be her undoing.

For twelve years, Braeden Drakonin has lived a lie. The Grimoire is his one chance at redemption, and it lands in his lap when Kara Magari comes into his life. Though he begins to care for this human girl, there is something he wants more. He wants the Grimoire.

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Lichgates: Book One of the Grimoire Saga (a Young Adult Fantasy Series)Lichgates: Book One of the Grimoire Saga by S.M. Boyce

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
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A Lychgate or a Lichgate is the name of a traditional roofed entrance. I was delighted to find the how little details can help build up fantasy world. Lichgates in S.M. Boyce’s world are magical entrances or portents to Ourea and its various kingdoms. This clever weaving of lost language items makes Ourea even more believable. Although I found similarities with several epic fantasies, they did not put me off, instead it enhanced the pleasure of reading Lichgates and strengthened the magical premises of Kara Magire’s new world. The appearance of a female Vagabond  may have shocked the Oureans but I really enjoyed reading about the development of a female magical protagonist. However much I like Harry Potter, Eragon , or Ged of the Earthsea trilogies, there is something about a female mage that most fantasy writers don’t do justice to. They are almost always fobbed off as supporting cast for a brilliant plot.

The plot develops slowly but the pace quickens around halfway. A slower pace allowed Boyce to build up the interpersonal dynamics of Ourea in greater details but it might deter readers who like to cut to the chase quickly. To those I would suggest that they read on because the Grimoire Saga shows great promise and I can’t wait to read the rest!

I like the fact that Braeden is a character with many shades of grey. In the beginning you might think that this is one of those fantasy romances but you will be pleasantly surprised. Kara and Braeden share a great chemistry but what they want from life and their roles in this fantastic drama is completely different. What could have been a bit more imaginative was a term for the royals. Calling them Bloods doesn’t compare with what Boyce has shown she is capable of. However, I am happy with Bloods as long as the rest of the saga is as good a read as Lichgates.

S.M. BoyceInternational Amazon Bestseller. Fantasy Author. Twitter addict. Book Blogger. Geek. Sarcastic. Gooey. Odd. Author of the action-packed Grimoire Saga S.M. Boyce is a novelist who loves ghosts, magic, and spooky things. She prefers loose-leaf tea, reads far too many books, and is always cold. She’s married to her soul mate and couldn’t be happier. Her B.A. in Creative Writing qualifies her to serve you french fries. Boyce likes to update her blog a few times each week so that you have something to wake you up in the morning.

Connect with the Author:

Giveaway:

One Lucky Winner will get a Signed Copy of Lichgates (Grimoire Saga #1) by S.M.Boyce.

Giveaway Open to US Residents Only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway