CSFF Blog Tour – Blaggard’s Moon, Day 2

I was miffed, to say the least, when I discovered yesterday that the post I’d set to publish in the morning, didn’t. For those of you who stopped by hoping to find a list of participating blogger links, I apologize.

But I’m not about to let a rough start spoil this tour for Blaggard’s Moon. With good reason, this is one of those books that gets high acclaim from a wide variety of readers. For an excellent story summary, I suggest Fred Warren‘s. Rachel Starr Thomson has an especially thoughtful post. Brandon Barr, Jill Williamson, and Epic Rat posted reviews you might be interested in (and if you’d like to win a free copy Epic Rat is holding a contest)—you’ll get an interesting balance if you look at all three.

Keanan Brand has a study of the word “blaggard” that is interesting as well as a post highlighting his favorite passage. How different from the one I want to share!

polivka-at-booksigningPhyllis Wheeler takes an excellent look at The Nearing Vast Web site. Her post prompted me to visit there again myself—which is where I found this picture of our quiet, hard-working author, George Bryan (he goes by Bryan) Polivka, here participating in a book signing.

Jason Joyner does a nice overview (with links to several reviews) of the Trophy Chase Trilogy—and has some pirate fun along the way. Certainly for anyone who just discovered Nearing Vast, I hope you put the trilogy on your to-buy list, along with Blaggard’s Moon.

So here’s the writing sample I chose, in part because it shows the depth of character development, in part because it shows the writer’s and the character’s voice so well. In part because it shows how Polivka weaves his themes into the story seamlessly.

It seemed to Delaney like it was usually women that made up those things a man couldn’t ever get over. Like Yer Poor Ma, who he could never forget. She’d been his whole world once, though she was in fact just a small, no-account woman who got herself married to a drunk, and had a kid. She wasn’t any kind of special person in any way. But she was still his Poor Ma. She still had magic in her songs, and a heart that blazed like a cookstove in his memory, and she was all inside him and would never leave him. She would always be singing him lullabies as the dark waves rose.

And Maybelle Cuddy. Just a barmaid, a plain barmaid, not like Jenta, but a regular girl serving up ale and getting pinched and slapping away rude hands and counting her tips at the end of a day. But oh, those eyes. That voice. Those things she said to him. He thought he could leave her behind, but he couldn’t. She’d always be in his heart now, always promising she’d love him forever [….]

It was as though men just couldn’t help themselves. Look at Conch Imbry, as fierce a man as ever was, and yet Jenta Stillmithers had softened him all up. She was stroking his hand, and he was a puppy dog. It was like … it was like women were made to do that to men. Like men were made with a big soft spot, and no matter how tough they got they couldn’t protect themselves there. Like maybe, when God took that rib from the man to make the woman, the way the priests told it from their Scripture books, he left a hole in the man. One that she could always slide into. And the man couldn’t stop her doing it, either.

Hmmm. Pretty good writing, don’t you think?

Published in: on April 21, 2009 at 10:20 am  Comments (9)  
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  1. I think it’s pretty good writing too!

    Now if I could write like that …


  2. […] Hicks Cris Jesse Jason Joyner Kait Carol Keen Mike Lynch Magma Margaret Melissa Meeks Rebecca LuElla Miller Nissa John W. Otte Steve Rice Crista Richey Chawna Schroeder James Somers Rachel Starr […]


  3. So now I finally find out what he goes by. LOL


  4. Very, very cool writing. Could almost get me to read the darn book! ;


  5. Great post Becky (:I unfortunately thought Blaggard’s Moon was just OK, not bad, just OK. George Bryan Polivka is a very talented writer, I just had a hard time getting into it. I’m thinking it could have been, because I have sadly not been in the mood to read ): I’ve heard nothing, but awesome reviews on it and the Trophy Chase Trilogy (which I for sure want to read.)
    Again great post and sorry about yesterdays post not working right for you (:

    Bye For Now,


  6. That whole “Yer Poor Ma” thing is great. I laugh sometimes when I have to ask the children at the Club about their parents, and they only know them by “Mom” or “Dad”. On at least one occasion, a kid gave me the particularly colorful name that one ex-spouse called the other parent.

    And that seamless weaving that you mentioned — I wish I could do it as well in my own writing.


  7. Nicole, I thought about you a couple times during this tour. The fantasy elements are so minor, I don’t think you’d have a problem reading it at all.

    I still don’t quite get how you love the fuller, richer, slower-paced story and still love some of the stories you love. Some day you’ll have to try to explain it to me.



  8. Beth, I put Bryan’s name in just for you. 😉

    Keanan, I loved the Yer Poor Ma designation, too. Wow! With just that simple phrase, a world of characterization took place.

    Yep, Phyllis, I’m with you—I wish I was as talented a writer as Bryan!

    Ryan, no doubt this story has a slower pace, so if you expected more immediate action, it might have been off-putting. Also, I didn’t connect with a character right away.

    Chawna was right in what she said about the characters, but I still connected with Jenta. (I’ll have to go back over the book to see if I can figure out why.) I think once you start pulling for a character, the character pulls you right through to the story’s end.



  9. Yeah, that is a spectacular piece of writing. Towards the end of that excerpt I kept waiting for Bryan to mention the heart. But the fact that he left it out and chose a more subtle route makes it much better.


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