Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Vardin Village: A Book Review

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Resolutions: Read More

Sadly, I think a lot of the younger generation has missed out on one of the best pastimes.  So often these days kids are so into their tech gadgets that to actually sit down and read a book seems "Boring".  Reading books, whether it be non-fiction or fiction is to me and important part of life and helps your brain to be active (IN A GOOD WAY).  I feel sometimes as if it's almost a dying art.

I used to do tons of book reviews, and I have somewhat backed away from doing them.  I think primarily because it kinda  Not that I don't still read, because I read daily.  Reading for me is a necessity and a way to escape the stresses of my own life and for just a brief time become immersed inside a world of fiction.  I highly respect those who have the gift of writing and share that gift with the world.  

Unknown Authors...

One of the brilliant parts of technology is the gift of immediate gratification.  No longer do we have to wait for a package to arrive with books, we can order instantly from Amazon and other Ebook retailers.  I know for myself I've discovered a ton of authors that if it werent' for ebooks, I'd have never heard of nor tried.

Sometimes we get stuck in a rut, or at least I know for myself I do.  There was a long period of time where I didn't want to read anything that wasn't written by UK or Irish authors.  I became obsessed with UK Chick-lit.  Yet, I had just about read all of my favorites and so it was relying on Amazon's recommendations that I was able to discover a ton of new authors and give books I'd have never thought to read a shot!

Vardin Village: An Ebook 

Vardin Village is titled after the Fictional town in which the book is set.  It seems to be set somewhere up north around Massachussets, etc.  (It may have said and I just can't remember).  The story centers around a sixteen year old kid named George and his younger sister Eleanor.  George and his sister are Vardin's, the family that the town takes it's name from.  

The whole story is set around George and his sister and their ancestrial home which was left to the village when his grandfather, George the Sixth died.  George and his sister have a cottage that they live in that is connected to the mansion.  The story begins when his "Uncle Morris", a friend of George's grandfather (George the Sixth) comes to town and discovers that the children have been living in less than ideal conditions.

George's mother has basically left the children to go and be with her current boyfriend.  His father died some years back, and so in a sense it's just himself and his sister.  Despite coming from a long line of a prominent family, George and his sister are pretty much destitute.  There are a wonderful cast of characters that rally together to help George and his sister stay out of the "System" and it brings together people who otherwise likely wouldn't have had any connection.

We also have our needed "Antagonist" in the story by way of Ash Jansen and the Jansen family which includes a former Miss USA and a son who is your stereotypical Rich boy with a superiority complex.  Mrs. Jensen in a lot of ways seems highly delusional and out of touch with reality.  A lot of her bits seemed to be over the top.

My Thoughts...

The Cons..

While the writing isn't the best I've ever read, and it is pretty telling that this is the authors first "rodeo", the story itself is a good one.  When I first started reading it, it seemed very amateur and almost as if it had been written by a teenager.  Some of the language used just doesn't seem to be very realistic and believable.  There are times when the author write sentences in ALL CAPS, kinda how we do on social media to make the point that we are ANGRY.  I've never read a book in which they used All Caps to convey emotion.

The Pros

I really enjoyed the story.  Once I moved passed the second or third chapter, it seemed that the flow was better.  There was one part that discussed depression and drug abuse and I definitely could relate to those issues and it was nice to see how the author handled and felt about those issues.  I read a lot of UK literature and in some ways it felt that this was a UK setting, it had the "Village" feel to it like a lot of UK books I read.

It was a heartwarming story watching a pack of virtual strangers (not exactly strangers, but not bosom buddies either) come together and fight for what's right even if it meant breaking a few rules along the way.  


While the writing isn't the best, the story is a good one.  This is one reason why I stopped doing a lot of book reviews, because I know that I am not a great writer and so it feels a little condescending to say that someone's writing isn't great.  However, I feel with a little time Maggie Spence could develop into a great writer.  She defintely had a great story within, it's just I guess tuning her craft.  The fact that I was able to finish this story (there are so many books that I can't finish- from well known and great writers) speaks volumes for how good the STORY is.  

It pulled me in and had me excited to see what unfolded next.  That's the main purpose of any book, is to make you forget the world in which you are living and become a part of the world in which the author has created.  And for myself, Ms. Spence was able to do just that.  While she's not likely to win a Pultizer for this book, she's managed to weave a beautiful story together and capture her audience and provide entertainment.

Purchase on Amazon:

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**  I received this product for review purposes.  However, my thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.

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