Blog Tour—Violet Dawn Review

First, our contest info. You have two opportunities to win a copy of Violet Dawn. Either leave a comment and wait to see if your name is drawn. Since I will be unable to conduct the drawing until Monday, the deadline for eligible comments is extended until Sunday midnight PDT. The second way to win is to correctly answer the Brandilyn question of the week. If more than one person gives the correct answer, I’ll hold a drawing from those names.

And the question is:

What house published Brandilyn’s first book?

If you are a regular at Brandilyn Collins’s blogsite and have read her NES (Never Ending Saga) about her road to publishing, you know she once upon a time wrote women’s fiction instead of suspense.

    violet dawn

Violet Dawn, the first book in Brandilyn’s Kanner Lake series, has a hint of lace showing from her women’s-lit slip, and quite frankly, I like it.

Paige Williams (as I recall, at one time Brandilyn had named her Paige Turner. I do not lie! 😀 ) is a girl with a secret, such an important one she is willing to cover up a murder just to keep herself out of the public’s prying eyes. And of course, in a small town like Kanner Lake, there is no such thing as keeping out of the public eye, especially when the local reporter, with aspirations for the big time, gets wind of a story.

Faithful to her “Seatbelt Suspense” trademark, Collins constructed a fast-paced novel with numerous “what will happen next” moments. But along with danger, the protagonist must face her inner turmoil, which gives the character that added depth that makes Violet Dawn a bit more than the average suspense novel.

Some of the things I found especially endearing in this book: a touch of humor; a fully developed heroine; a believable antagonist but one that does not overshadow the protagonist; the development of place such that it almost becomes one of the characters; the hint of hope without any unrealistic, overnight spiritual change; a satisfying ending, wrapped up so perfectly by the final scene with the crew that makes up the Scenes and Beans bloggers.

Some things, in my opinion, would make this book stronger. Of course, you have to remember, this is not my genre of choice. I love mystery, but am not crazy about the dire jeopardy the protagonist gets in time and again in a suspense. Mayhap those readers who love the adrenaline rush would have a different view.

I thought the beginning was “too suspenseful.” For one thing, I didn’t know enough about Paige at that point to care like I did later. For another, I thought it—specifically the scene to retrieve the anchor from the garage—seemed more dramatic than it needed to be.

Also at the beginning, with a cast of characters to become familiar with, I felt a little disconnected, but that soon changed, and knowing that Collins was launching a series centered on the people in this town, I was willing to wait. I was certainly not disappointed.

This, in my opinion, is Collins’s best novel to date. Highly recommend.

Published in: on September 29, 2006 at 5:00 am  Comments (6)  
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