Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Hidden Secrets Saga: Seventh Mark by W. J. May (Young Adult, 10/10E) Review & Guest Blog Post

April 2013, Amazon Media, 323 pages, Ebook, Review copy 

Summary from W J May's website
Like most teenagers, Rouge is trying to figure out who she is and what she wants to be. With little knowledge about her past, she has questions but has never tried to find the answers. Everything changes when she befriends a strangely intoxicating family. Siblings Grace and Michael, appear to have secrets which seem connected to Rouge. Her hunch is confirmed when a horrible incident occurs at an outdoor party. Rouge may be the only one who can find the answer.

An ancient journal, a Siorghra necklace and a special mark force life-altering decisions for a girl who grew up unprepared to fight for her life or others.

All secrets have a cost and Rouge’s determination to find the truth can only lead to trouble…or something even more sinister

Nayuleska's thoughts 
Life treats Rouge roughly, but that makes her strong enough to endure the battles ahead. I love that toughness in her, how at the worst time of her life she is showered with gifts. She is more special than she realises, not just in why everyone is after her but because she forges strong friendships which endure severance. Plus there is the cool part of her new powers too......I'm not spilling any beans! Go read it!  

There's lots more on W. J. May's website

Suggested read
Be sure to check out W. J. May's other series which I have reviewed, Chronicles of Kerrigan - the first book is Rae of Hope, Young Adult, 10/10

It is with great pleasure to present a guest blog post from W. J. May all about imagination!

My kids have these great imaginations. My two year old - oops, sorry, she just turned three last Sunday – so my JUST three year old has this amazing imagination. I am amazing at how she can play pretend with absolutely no clue about the real world J She’s got fairytales and princesses and castles everywhere, even the toilet is a throne (and not in the way you are thinking!). She even gets good vs evil and knows how to act scared.

I love the imaginary. So I have to throw a few questions your way and see if I stand alone with my hand raised or if I am one of many.

Are you a daydreamer? Nightdreamer? Bored-so-I-gotta-make-up-something dreamer?

Before you raise your hand, let me try to explain what I mean exactly. I’m not talking about dreaming while you are asleep. I’m referring to dreaming to fall asleep or while you’re on a long drive, the train, or waiting for the bus. You’re awake, and in control of what’s going on and who’s allowed to come or leave in the dream. Kinda like a director.

I raise my hand high. I’ve been awake-dreaming ever since I can remember. As a kid, I would read a book and off I’d go on my paper route, pretending to be the main character or someone else in the book.
Never realized this wasn’t something everyone did. Except one time, while delivering my papers, I pretended I was in a foreign country and bad people were after me. I’d drop a newspaper in a mailbox, race to a bush then around a car and off to the next mailbox. Two teenage girls were walking down the road and started following and teasing me (I can’t really blame them in hindsight). Well, I did what any ten year old kid would do in that situation: I turned my foreign language on them. I have to admit it didn’t have the same effect as my imagination had thought it would. 

It happened one time only. After that, I kept my stories inside my head, where they belonged. Till I started writing and became a published author –take that you silly-lack-of-imagination girls from my paper route! 

Hopefully we are all guilty of awake-dreaming (bit embarrassing if it’s only me). 

I’m not finished yet though. If I’m spilling the beans, I might as well dump the whole can.

There’s another twist with my dreaming. If it’s a movie, TV show, book, or just some awesome idea (it’s always a great idea if it’s our own, right?), I continue the plotline. Could be to get to know a minor character better by giving them a story of their own or change an ending to something I hoped to see, or whatever suits the story. Shoot, I’ve even added more characters (usually a great main character played by moi or something like that J ) It’s fun – like reading a book or watching a movie in my head. Sometimes I’ll even carry the story on for a week or two – or go back (like rewinding), change things up and move forward again.

I used to do this in high school and university. I competed in athletics (high jump for those of you who haven’t heard the story, which btw, I won UK's indoor AAAs a few years back and my old coach lives in Liverpool) and every once and while I’d get a great plot line going that I couldn’t wait to get out and start training or go for a run. Full focus time on continuing the story. Ahhh…The places I went, the people I met, the things I did – married a rock star, became a famous actress, turned down a hot guy because he wasn’t good enough, dated a vampire, staked a vampire, play professional sports… I’ve done it all! Well, in my dreams at least. 

Now life is a tad busier than back in high school and university. Kids, hubby, business, dog, blogging, facebooking, social networking, marketing, cleaning the house, cooking dinner, laundry, family, etc… I don’t have the free time I did back then. I don’t train like I did back then either (Though I’d love to have that body back J ). I’m not bitter (about the time constraints). I still get the freedom to make-believe with writing, and I still squeeze in bursts of pretend.

The question I’m now wondering as I admit this and put pen to paper, am I the only one? Do other people read a book, get so caught up in it that they don’t want the story to end and continue it on their own? Is this normal? I’m mean, let’s face it, I’ve kind of never really considered myself normal – mainly because I have no clue on what normal really is. 

Thank you W. J. May for this insight into your mind - and imagination. I daydream exactly as you do - I'm pretty sure a lot of authors do too! And non-authors, since it is so much fun. Your books are awesome, so I hope everyone now goes and checks them out for themselves! 

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