I recently invested in a Kirkus Review for my novel, Blue Moon over Madagascar, to the tune of $500. I come from Ohio farmer stock, cautious in our spending, expecting results for that much money. When the report came, I have to say I was a little disappointed.
The review basically retold the story on the book’s cover flap about Lilith Devlin working for the faeries (I wonder if the person really read it?) The reviewer did say, “The book offers lyrical prose that mirrors the simple, natural theme of the book’s plot (“Her research insisted that she connect with them in nature, so she chose to visit the woods, to get far away from city vibrations, to seek out places that were wild and seldom seen”), and it has all the elements of a relaxing beach read.”
Not sure I was shooting for “relaxing beach read”; thought the story a bit more pithy than that, but I will receive that as a positive critique. I’m grateful for this person’s retelling of my story and positive intent (but whatever happened to words like “compelling, great characters,” and “suspenseful”?)
The only criticism: “When reading a fantasy novel, one can easily believe that a faery can pop out of someone’s garden and give her a mission. But the idea that the person’s co-worker and love interest will immediately trust these same faeries is harder to believe. The story is also riddled with tiny coincidences, which make it hard to fully buy into the plot. A hard-to-believe story about one woman’s (and several hundred faeries’) mission to save the planet.”
My reviewer has not connected with the faeries yet, I can tell. Those “tiny coincidences” (maybe he or she did actually read the book) are synchronicities. These are the signposts that tell you that you’re following your spiritual path. When you are headed in the right direction, people will show up (like Lilith’s co-worker and love interest) to help you at just the right time and place. New answers to old problems appear out of thin air.
These signposts, or synchronicities, are like magic, and that’s what I love most about my life now. For example, my cat was injured and not doing well, and that same day I got an email about animal healing with homeopathy. It helped so much! The magic really excites me and I can’t wait for the next installment. In fact, my friend Jude and I agreed that the magic is much more important to us than amassing wealth and possessions.
What’s your take on all this? Are you noticing the synchronicities in your life? Do you think Kirkus will give me a refund?