Silentheart To begin with, let me make myself perfectly clear. I have read a great number of vampire books during the last few years based on what is an iffy plot in the first place and turning it into a vampire novel, thus hopefully insuring their place in the "craze of the day". This is wrong on on so any levels, first: it takes an inventive and successful book series and borrows not just plots but mannerisms, characterization and some so called authors have even "borrowed" far more, walking a thin line to keep from falling into what I Like to call the lake of
what I like to refer to as plagiarism, which we all know is wrong.
This is where my review of Silentheart comes into play. Written by Roberta Hoffer, Silentheart
is for vampire lovers, a disappointment of epic proportions. Not only is the theme and plot thin, with predictable characters complete with an estranged/divorced woman escaping to begin a new life, away from her abusive husband, it is also brings said abusive husband back into her life to "get his revenge". As this is expected by the main character Sarah who discovers upon moving to Maryland that her ex-husband has not only sought her down but is still waiting for his pound of flesh, Sarah should not be surprised nor should the reader when she is accosted in her own home.
Of course as in all vampire books, we must find out how our heroine is connected to vampires. In Sarah's case it is that far into her family history, there are vampires galore. She discovers she has a guardian vampire who has protected her all her life with the name of Carter and this vampire is in love with Sarah. And so the story goes. It takes all the important elements of a good vampire story, tosses them around like a Cesar salad and calls it good.
But there is much more to writing a good book based upon vampires.
First the characters have to have personality and not be cardboard cutouts or predictable by modeling them whether consciously or unconsciously after hundreds of other vampires in literature. Second, think as many authors have previously to show major characters such as Sarah, with some strength and devotion to those she loves. The days of vampires lying on fainting couches (think Barnabus Collins in Dark Shadows) waiting for their vampires is too tame (and lame for today's reader.
And lastly, if you are going to go to all the trouble of writing a book, get a darn good editor ad copywriter to check, recheck and check again, language used throughout the books and how it fits each character.
All sentences should make sense and if they do not, ask yourself why they do not and rewrite that page or perhaps delete it all together. And my personal pet peeve is books that have glaring mistakes of mixing tenses, so the reader is thoroughly confused and lost. If a best seller is hoped for, writing must flow one scene into another and there should be no doubt as to who is speaking at any time.
And if the grammatical and editorial errors were not enough to break my chain of thought when it came to keeping the characters straight the spelling errors were the icing on the cake. Run spell check and avoid errors for instance, that were so glaring, my 12 r old son spotted them just upon leafing through the book in my office.
To be brutally honest, this book was not only hard to get into as the editorial glitches were more than just mistakes, they were annoying. And if little mistakes had been more carefully pursued and corrected, this book would have stood a chance to at least be "OK". But as it is I found it a great mistake, far too predictable and full of so any copy write errors that my attention was ever fully on the plot.
I'm sure the author had great hopes for this book and the basis for a good book is there. But in my opinion, it needs to be reworked with some fantastic and new, exciting and unpredictable events thrown in to capture the readers attention.
As it is now, I honestly cannot recommend this book to anyone to read. But I do have a recommendation for the author. Consider another publisher with employees who have your best interests at heart and begin to tighten up the plot.
Or if you really want a hit, Hide far away, this "One hit wonder" "subject of the day... vampires" and leave the bloodsuckers alone; They have way more than their 15 minutes of fame...it's time to move on. If I were the literary guru of the day, I would bring back more stories of everyday teens finding adventure in the strangest of places.
In fact I just read a book which fits this criteria and I personally would find it a breath of fresh air were vampire books to fade away and a new book craze be introduced with vampires left far behind. I am tired of vampires and if my unofficial poll makes a difference, consider this. Out of 20 individuals asked, between the ages of 10 and 80,.....85% want a new genre to read and are tired of vampires and the other 15% could read a medical journal front to back and not be bored.
Authors and publishers are you listening? It is time for something new and fresh for your loyal readers! I sincerely believe so and so do your fans as well. Let the fresh writing begin!