Home

Fresh Fiction Review of “Sherlock Holmes and the Return of the Whitechapel Vampire…

Leave a comment

Fresh Fiction just reviewed Sherlock Holmes and the Return of the Whitechapel Vampire by Dean P. Turnbloom

SH&RTNofWV Front cover

Reviewed by Monique Daoust
Posted October 15, 2015

Mystery Historical

Sherlock Holmes is now a country squire who has retired to Sussex to tend to his bees and write monographs. He hadn’t written to his friend Dr. Watson in a few months, so when the post brings news from Holmes, Watson is pleasantly surprised. But Holmes has more than a few banalities to tell his old comrade: bodies have been surfacing near the coast of Newfoundland, drained of blood, but there’s no trace of a shipwreck. Holmes fears their old nemesis, Baron Barlucci, after laying low for over two decades, is up to no good again. Barlucci is a painful thorn in Holmes’ side. The Baron is the only villain the great detective hasn’t captured, and of course, Dr. Watson must sail with Holmes to Manhattan Island, where more bodies have been found.

SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE RETURN OF THE WHITECHAPEL VAMPIRE is not the pastiche I thought it might have been, but the almost real deal. Right from the opening paragraphs, I was overjoyed because I felt I was reading a brand new Conan Doyle mystery. Being a die-hard fan of the original, I then became wary: could a modern author be successful in this tremendous undertaking? The answer is a resounding yes! SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE RETURN OF THE WHITECHAPEL VAMPIRE is more than an homage to Conan Doyle: Mr. Turnbloom essentially captures everything that is Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson but makes it his own, without the reader ever having the impression of the author “trying”; never does the author endeavour to copy, but he in fact prolongs the formidable legacy of Conan Doyle. Mr. Turnbloom’s writing is eloquent and vivid, he captures the early twentieth century as accurately as a photograph, the tone is impeccable, the dialogues and the banter are entirely evocative of Conan Doyle’s, and Holmes and Watson are exactly how they should be. The pacing is perfect, and the story is as gripping as any Sherlock Holmes book.

If I have one regret it’s not knowing that SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE RETURN OF THE WHITECHAPEL VAMPIRE was the third book in this series, and while obviously this instalment can be read as a standalone, the previous books figure now on my to-be-read-pile because it is simply brilliant. SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE RETURN OF THE WHITECHAPEL VAMPIRE is absolutely splendid from beginning to end, and should be read by anyone who hasn’t had enough of Sir Arthur’s great detective, and everybody who likes a good mystery!

GOODREADS Giveaway is over!

Leave a comment

Thanks to everyone who entered the Goodreads Giveaway for my latest novel, “Sherlock Holmes and the Return of the Whitechapel Vampire”. Over 2100 people entered and I will be mailing out the winners’ autographed copies tomorrow.

Congratulations SAMANTHA and MARIE!! Don’t forget to write a review as soon as you have read the books!

The invitation goes for anyone who has read my work to review it — either on Goodreads or on Amazon and/or Barnes & Noble.

WHODUNIT?: THE UNIVERSE IS DYING (SPOILER ALERT: DARK MATTER)

Leave a comment

Recently I read an article saying scientists last year published data that the universe is dying. Don’t panic, apparently it’s been dying for the last 10 billion years and will continue to die for trillions more. So this isn’t the news that grabbed my attention.

DarkMatterMap

What I found more fascinating than a dying universe was the postulation that dark energy was causing the expansion of this dying universe to speed up. And that dark matter is a substance that keeps our own galaxy from flying apart. These ideas seem to me to be counter-intuitive, but then they were predicted by no less an Einstein than Einstein, so who am I to doubt?
Anyway, this got me thinking about how in almost every culture, every genre, every folk tale, darkness is equated with evil. And then to find out that dark energy is speeding up the demise of the universe is to me, quite shocking and a bit revelatory. I mean, it tends to imply that we have an innate sense of the universe and the place of darkness within it. So, rather than saying that evil is negative energy, perhaps it’s more accurate to say that evil is possessed of dark energy.

dracula_ap_328Darth-Vader_6bda9114Frankenstein-article1

This gives thought perhaps to having an evil genius or race of aliens who use dark energy in ways we use (should we call it) light energy, with the theme of Good vs Evil becoming an actual battle between darkness and light for the very life of the universe.

It was just a thought.

Paths to Publishing…

Leave a comment

When I decided to re-boot this blog, one of the things I wanted to accomplish is to bring together some of the articles and blogs that I’ve found especially useful. But I didn’t want to just post other bloggers’ stuff. Even though I would naturally give credit where credit was due, I felt that would be plagiarizing, so I’ve decided that if I use another blogger’s graphics or articles, I would request permission to do so as well as link to the original article in their blog. I feel in doing this I’m being as ethical as I can possibly be.
And I’m thrilled that this first graphic is from a blogger I have the utmost respect for, Jane Friedman. I’ve been a fan of Jane’s blog since I started down this road and one of the most interesting graphics I’ve seen was one Jane developed that shows where on the publishing continuum a writer exists. I was actually surprised to find that I was to the left, graphically speaking, of the self-published authors.

Jane graciously has granted me permission to reprint her graphic, showing the Key Book Publishing Paths, in my blog. You can find the original article on Jane’s blog, here. I had planned to have the graphic only, but it apparently is not of high enough resolution to read as a jpeg, so I’ve decided to show the low-res graphic and provide the PDF of the graphic. I found it to be very interesting.

The Key Book Publishing Paths by Jane Friedman

 KeyPathsPublishing

Also, you may find Jane’s book, Publishing 101, an interesting read. I know I did.

 Next week I plan to post the first chapter of “SHERLOCK HOLMES and the WHITECHAPEL VAMPIRE” with commentary. Don’t miss it!! Tell your friends!!! Buy the book!!!!

Story Structure video

Leave a comment

Here is a very informative video on story structure and plot points I found. Even though it concerns screenplays, the concepts are applicable to novels as well.

More can be found at http://www.scriptlab.com/

Brand new book cover…

Leave a comment

Here is a look at the cover for my new novel, SHERLOCK HOLMES and the RETURN of the WHITECHAPEL VAMPIRE, to be published by MX Publishing October 26, 2015.
SH&RTNofWV Front cover

and this is the full cover…

SH&RTNofWV Full cover

This is the third and final work in the Whitechapel Vampire trilogy, and this one has more twists and turns than the first two.

 

My Review of “The Elements of Eloquence” by Mark Forsyth

Leave a comment

I recently reviewed Mark Forsyth’s wonderful new book at Goodreads. I decided to post it here as well.

The Elements of Eloquence

Eloquence
I read a good deal of books about writing, grammar, syntax, and the like, and was surprised that this book was not only informative, but cleverly put together and a delight to read. I don’t think it can be classified as an authoritative  text, and don’t believe the author meant it to be, but it was extremely informative concerning rhetorical elements of the English language as well as being quite funny. There were rhetorical elements with which we are all familiar, such as alliteration, but there were so many more that I’d never heard of but had a sense of, so much so that as I read I thought, ‘so, that’s what you call that’ particular structure. Mr. Forsyth has done an excellent job of taking a topic that by all rights should be abominably boring and made it not only interesting, but humorous as well. But beyond that, I believe it will become a reference book for my own writing, when I want to lend a certain amount of eloquence to a character.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/7532641-dean-turnbloom

New Novel First Draft Complete…

Leave a comment

Since “Sherlock Holmes and the Body Snatchers” came out last March, I’ve been diligently working on the last installment of the Whitechapel Vampire Trilogy, as yet unnamed, and have at last completed a rough first draft.

A few editorial notes about the trilogy. The first book, “Sherlock Holmes and the Whitechapel Vampire” was written entirely in third person point of view (POV) and I took my fair share of criticism for that as it was not in the Watson first person POV of most of the canon. That didn’t bother, though, as the original concept for the book wasn’t a Sherlock Holmes story, but was conceived as ‘what if Jack the Ripper were really a vampire’. Because of the time period involved, I worked Sherlock Holmes into the story, at first as an ancillary character. But I enjoyed writing the Holmes parts so much, I beefed up his role, which caused me to consider first person, but thought I’d wait.

The second book, ‘Body Snatchers’ was written in first person POV, but from varying characters. I thought it served the story and I was hesitant to attempt a full pastiche by having Watson’s POV be the only one in the book.

But now, in the third and final installment I’ve decided to go all out and write it as Doyle might have. The final book of the trilogy follows Watson throughout and will, I hope, give the reader more than a few surprises along the way. This final book takes place many years after the first two, which took place in 1888, first in London, and then New York. The action in the third takes place again in New York but in the year 1913, long after Holmes has retired to beekeeping in Sussex.

So, this trilogy has several arcs for the reader to follow. The story arc spans some twenty-five years, from 1888 to 1913, and each character in the story, I think, has his or her own arc of change. Finally, the writing itself has an arc from third person POV to multiple first person POV and finally to the first person POV used most often by Doyle, that of Watson. My hope is that aficionados of writing and of Sherlock Holmes will take note and enjoy the varied styles and mostly will enjoy the story from beginning to end.

A Lesson in Deduction…

1 Comment

If you can filter out the British accent (pardon me, Steve), this is a delightfully illuminating talk with much that is of practical use…please enjoy and share with your friends…

Goodreads book giveaway…

Leave a comment

Giving away four autographed novels of “Sherlock Holmes and the Whitechapel Vampire” on Goodreads

Be the first on your block to own one…

10% of the royalties goes to support the SEMPER FI Fund