Tears of Glass, by David Lake

8_5_17 Tears of Glass

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Tears of Glass feels like a narrative constructed for a screen rather than a novel. There were quite a few moments where visual cues would have significantly helped the reader get a better idea of what was happening.

 

Morgan is an ex-football player that seems to be holding a bit of nostalgia for those days. He has the classic ‘bad boy’ feel to him, without embracing the excess hostility or emotional distress. Which, I suppose is a good thing considering people around him are dying left and right. All because of a mysterious tape. From there, things blow up on a huge scale.

 

An air of mystery surrounds the first few chapters. There a lot of information purposefully withheld to leave the readers in the dark about certain things. Things are left rather vague. Now, normally, that would be an excellent device to draw readers in and keep them guessing. Unfortunately, this one worked a little too well. It took a few chapters to get the story, plot, and characters organized and discerned into their proper places.

 

Once things got organized, the story was interesting enough. I liked how things started small, but once they got going, the repercussions were massive. I think the ending was pretty fitting for the sequence of events. A little on the cliché side, and definitely with a romantic hero vibe.

 

The language of the narrative was lighthearted and wordy. It seemed to add to the relaxed tone of the novel itself. There’s quite a bit of action, but the way it’s told and the way the characters react make things seem more mellow than they’re supposed to be.

 

Characters weren’t bad. Making an effort to make the female lead a feminist was nice. However, she was stereotyped as a “man hater” and illustrated some of the misconceptions of feminists. Sara was still a very likeable character, though. Morgan’s character wasn’t bad either. I enjoyed the fact that he was a music nut. Beyond that, his character didn’t feel too original. He felt very two-dimensional. Sort of like he had a cardboard cutout standing in for him while everything else was going on.

 

Feeling lost at the beginning of a novel isn’t always a good thing. I think there are areas that could be polished a little better and made to fit the platform. It had its ups and downs, like any novel. All in all, though, it wasn’t a bad book.

 

Buy it here!

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Faithful and Devoted: Confessions of a Music Addict, by Jenna Rose Robbins

6_28_17 Faithful and Devoted

4 stars

 

Faithful and Devoted: Confessions of a Music Addict is exactly what it sounds like. Jenn’s journey through Spain following Depeche Mode is quite the adventure.

 

And it comes with the most heartbreaking ending.

 

The tone is fun and inviting. Though the novel definitely for a niche audience, writing style will beckon the reader to stay. Events flow so naturally together that it makes the ending shocking—forgive the Clickbait aura I just channeled.

 

It’s full of conflict. And yet it never feels like a disheartened story. In fact, for all the risks taken, there’s plenty of learning done. And plenty of reward. Almost all the events were delicious morsels of happiness for any fan. They’re sure to leave a jaw or two on the floor.

 

Regardless of who the reader’s favorite band is, this is a fun little read. It highlighted a wide array of the ups and downs of being a die-hard fan. It also sends a positive message about risk-taking. There’s always going to be a risk of something bad happening. Don’t let it stop you from enjoying your life.

 

 

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Misfortunes of T-Funk, by Barnaby Hazen

5_17_17 Misfortunes of T-Funk

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An interesting fact about the Kindle version of this novel. It comes with four audio tracks (linked in the text) that pop up during the narrative. Living in BFE with the world’s worst internet, I couldn’t listen to them during my reading. I do encourage others to try this and see how it affects the mood. It was a very unique reader engagement concept (as well as marketing promotion).

 

The story itself is about Theo and Judah surviving the misfortunes many new bands go through. All the while they’re trying to maintain their education and relationships. Except, once you get sucked into the time-consuming world of music, it’s not that easy.

 

I learned a lot about the music industry reading this novel. I also learned quite a bit about music itself. An excellent level of detail and explanation went into constructing the musical narrative. Grasping the ideas discussed shouldn’t be too difficult for those with a basic understanding of music.

 

Relationship-wise, this novel did a lot right. Both Judah and Theo have differing circumstances, but they’re realistic. They’re healthy (for the most part). They have their fair share of ups and downs and I liked how they got handled.

 

The story itself was good. The writing needs some editing. Breaking up paragraphs and sentences would help keep things from becoming too jumbled. Within the chapters, things bounced around between perspectives, people, and situations. Without breaks. I found myself reading the same page a few times to see where I missed a scene change. Passage of time was also muddled.

 

As a character-driven novel, I liked the style. As the story unfolds we learn more of the intricate details that flesh out their development. I’m not talking about when they were born or what their parents do, but their fears, their hopes. What drives them. What holds them back. Their emotions feel accessible for the readers. It helps them come alive. I wasn’t a fan of the information dump at certain points in the story. It changed things up, however, by utilizing both dialogue and narration to tell. Dialogue did get a little clunky without much action in between. The character interactions remained solid despite.

 

From small nightclubs to Jimi Hendrix’s grave, Misfortunes of T-Funk manages to encompass the raw drive it takes to succeed as a band. The let downs, the frustrations…and, in the end, the ability to rely on other people. With a little polishing, this could slide into the top-10 charts without trying.

 

Buy it here!