The description sounded good, and it has a very pretty cover. That’s about the extent of what I can say nice about this one. I ended up putting it down around 25%.
Plot and Pace- Very slow. There were hints, but nothing terribly original. At 25% through the novel, we’d rehashed the same points multiple times. I grew horribly bored. This would benefit greatly from trimming about 30-50% of each chapter.
Style and Readability- The first 3 chapters seemed much more polished than the rest. Typos and inconsistency killed this. For example, at one point, on the same page, and talking about the same person, His Grace was put correctly, his Grace, His grace, etc. This book would greatly benefit from a copy editor.
World building- Minimal to the point of “Oh, it’s generic England”
Characters- Reasonably differentiated in descriptions, but not in speech. If you covered up the dialogue tags, you wouldn’t be able to tell who spoke.
As a writer, we can learn from bad/less than stellar books as well as great ones.
Things to learn from this story:
1. Proofread. It’s the biggest problem I end up running into in self/indie published books. Get a copy editor, like Becca, and use the corrections they give you.
2.Tighten more than you think possible. Your novel can wear that corset, trust me. The best novels I’ve ever read don’t waste a word.
More reviews to come…