|Stephen Woodworth is a talented short-story writer, no doubt
about that. You dont win the Writers of the Future contest and sell to top-line
magazines if you arent. But this was his first novel, and as Ive been
discovering for myself, theres a world of difference between the two lengths.
not going to try to place it in a specific genre, because it has elements of many, but to
say it was a Detective Paranormal Romance would be accurate but incomplete. The novel is
set in a current-day USA where those with violet eyes can channel the dead, and those
without cant. Someone is killing these already-scarce "Violets". The story
follows one particular Violet (female) and an FBI agent (male), both somewhat
psychologically damaged, as they struggle to resolve this case. And guess what? Nah, you
dont need to guessI already told you it was a Romance.
Well, you could have got all that from the cover, and what a great cover it is, but
whats inside? As I mentioned earlier, this was his first novel, and to my jaundiced
eye, it shows. The first half is a little stiff and overly structured for my taste, but in
the second half, well, Im not sure whether he finally got into the swing of things,
or whether Id just got used to his style, but I couldnt put the book down. Not
even when one of the cats brought in a healthy mouse and started playing with it right
next to me. "Not now, Shadow! Im reading!"
So... my recommendation? Buy it. Read it. Do whatever it takes to get through the first
half, and then hang on for the ride. I promise you, the payoff is worth it.
I have the next three in the series waiting to be reviewed. Im quite looking
forward to them.