The Beauty of a 3 Star Review!

We take a break in our regularly scheduled programming of teaser updates to bring you an actual blog inspired by my fifth review, which, while not an entirely stellar one (3/5 stars), is insightful and thought provoking. Before I tell you why, let me start by saying I am not one of those authors who will engage with reviewers on a regular basis.  The ARC review process is a little different, and this blog is being posted with the reviewer’s blessing:)

So…to get this party started, TheBookishBabe found Blood Toy’s POV changes confusing.  She is not the first to say it, though other reviewers disagree.  Thing is, it would have been easy for me to make the POV changes clear from the start.  I intentionally created them to be blurry, the narration slipping from first person into third the only initial indicator that the reader is looking at a different character, bringing each one into focus only as his/her scene progresses.  

Let me repeat.  I made a choice to give my reader a hard time, because I thought the moments of uncertainty—that unsettled feeling, that brief confusion—would enhance the reader experience.  Set the mood that sh*t is about to go down and/or everything is not as it seems. So I intentionally—stylistically—created what is becoming the main criticism for Book 1.  

Was that self-indulgent or what?  What’s worse…I really don’t want to give it up for Book 2.  But I will.  It’s just another darling to kill, right?  I usually only change POV once per chapter anyway.

The second thing TheBookishBabe confirmed for me is this: some people are really, really going to hate Desollador.  I hope the teasers do a good job of showing Desollador is NOT a good guy. He is a bad, bad man who does bad, bad things (theme song to Despicable Me playing in my head). Only I fear ordinary readers—ones without a blogger’s more objective opinion–who hate Desollador will not be kind enough to give the book 3 stars. Theirs will be a visceral reaction, a voice for all victims of real abuse which my book trivializes, whose plight my book romanticizes. Mark my words.  They’re coming for me, pitchforks and one stars!

Speaking of romance…many who read in the urban fantasy genre are looking for an element of that.  TheBookishBabe asked for more romance (or sex) in Book 2.  I am wondering what sort of disclaimer I should put on my listing to make it clear Blood Toy is NOT a romance.  That readers looking for a romance will hate the twisted imitation of it that exists between Desollador and Diane.  This is my current disclaimer:  This book is intended for mature audiences only and includes subject matter that may be disturbing to some audiences.

I am beginning to think I should also add “Blood Toy is not a paranormal romance.” What do you think?  

Screen Shot 2015-06-26 at 3.03.41 PM

PS.  Book 2 will have more romance and more sex, but romance fans will still hate it.  You’ll see why!  I am not a good person:)

9 thoughts on “The Beauty of a 3 Star Review!

  1. As an additional thought: the POV thing seems (although, not having read the book, I could not say for sure) like it might be the same problem that some people had with the non-sequential ordering in “Pulp Fiction” — the director asked people to do a little mental work for the cookies and some people just won’t.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah, I’m so glad I saw this post! I’ve been reading your teasers thinking: ‘The fuck is this romantic hero doing?’ so I’m glad Desollador’s supposed to be bad. Very bad. I mean, erotica and “abuse porn” aren’t my cup of tea personally, but there’s no doubt you’ve got that spot-on in your writing. 🙂

    Good luck with the release!

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s so funny. Ya, TheBookishBabe also wanted more descriptive (and maybe just more) sex. There are a lot of sexually charged scenes and a few sex scenes but I tried really hard not to cross the line into porn. Not sure I managed to keep it out of the erotica genre totally. I am the girl who rooted for Spike vs. Angel, Lestat vs. Louis, Hannibal Lector vs…you get my drift. So Desollador is THAT guy. Definitely not a romantic hero, but I love him:)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. My only concern about any of this is, it IS just one review.
    Does the story in BK 2 call for more sex?
    When you envision BK 2 is with POV changes?
    I would hold fast to original concept for the book because it worked like… oh whats the word?…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yep it calls for a *little* more sex and there is a romantic element or the appearance of one. And POV changes. I will definitely hold fast to original concept but I MAY make those changes easier to identify.

      Liked by 1 person

      • “I MAY make those changes easier…”
        I thought you did fine. There was only three tims in the book where I had to do a doublecheck of who was talking. “3 times” in a novel that size does not equal a “confusing read.”

        Liked by 1 person

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