*Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a member of The Virtual Book Tour Cafe' and a copy of this book was provided to me by the author. Although payment may have been received by The Virtual Book Tour Cafe', no payment was received by me in exchange for this review nor was there an obligation to write a positive one. All opinions expressed here are entirely of my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, the book's publisher and publicist or the readers of this review. This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*
02 July, 2012
Review & Interview:: Guardian Trilogy by Liz Schulte
The summary of the book on various sites doesn’t really do justice to the storyline. It’s so much more.
The protagonist is quite an introvert and thus her profession of a photographer suits her quite well. She is used to seeing the world through the lenses and she is quite comfortable with her life until she realizes that a couple of strangers are following her. Their entry in the book brings in a lot of mystery with them -- the mystery surrounding these two men and the mystery surrounding Olivia herself.
The best part of the book is that the story is told from two people’s POV. So while we always know what or how Olivia is thinking, we also get a second person’s take on the same situation. Even though this causes quite a bit of repetition, it’s quite refreshing actually to be able to see a third opinion (besides the protagonist & the reader). Secondly, I love the characterization. Even with paranormal situations, Ms.Schulte manages to keep Olivia quite believable. Juliet is loveable and Holden is definitely swoon worthy.
The thing with sequels is that, it usually gets difficult for the author to live up to the expectations set by the first book. Ms.Schulte has definitely delivered a sequel that’s as good as the first one – if not better.
I am finding it really difficult to review this second book in the trilogy without giving out much spoilers. So, I will keep it really short. The first thing about ‘Choices’ is that you need to read ‘Secrets’ first. Otherwise you may find yourself doing a lot of wondering and asking a lot of questions. The characterization remains to be one of the strengths of the plot. The dialogue delivery was better in this book. And yes, there are a hell lot of twists to keep you turning the pages.
About the Author
I am a Scorpio. I enjoy long walks on the beach, drinking copious amounts of alcohol, and men in hockey masks. In my spare time I work to foil the plans of my arch nemesis, utilize my eight finger discount, and lecture from my soapbox about social injustices. I do not tolerate fools or like people who make Walmart plural. I judge people who are missing more teeth than they have, unless they are old. I would like to someday be the scary old woman in the neighborhood that all the children are afraid of, however I will be misunderstood and actually a sweet old lady turned bitter by the disappointments of this cruel, cruel life. I will have made my vast wealth telling fortunes under the alias the Mad Madame Mim and selling t-shirts in tourist destinations that say “Life isn’t always flowers and sausages”
An Interview with the Author
DDS: Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a somewhat normal girl from the Midwest. I have two dogs and two cats, an overactive imagination, and a deep love for horror movies (good, bad, cheesy, doesn’t matter to me). I love movies and traveling, but I spend the vast majority of my “free” time writing or reading. If I could do anything in the world I would love to write a travel book about haunted hotels and bed and breakfasts where I got to stay in each of them. Maybe someday.
DDS: What got you into writing?
I am a just a girl with a wild imagination really. I have always enjoyed making things up and telling stories, but writing wasn’t something I ever seriously considered doing. I was pretty focused on being a lawyer through junior high, high school, and college. I used to read constantly. My mom would take me to the library and I would check out the maximum allowed and devour the books in two weeks—I think I read every YA book our library had. In junior high I wrote short stories very much influenced by RL Stine’s series, Fear Street, but those were mainly just for fun. It wasn’t until I graduated college that law no longer seemed as appealing. My mom encouraged me to write so I thought I would take a shot and Dark Corners was born.
DDS: Tell us about the Guardian Trilogy.
This is really hard to do without spoilers, but I will do my best. The Guardian Trilogy is a paranormal romance/urban fantasy trilogy about a woman named Olivia Martin who is thrust into a destiny she never asked for. It starts with her meeting two very different strangers. Both are odd, mysterious, and secretive, but they are two sides to a very precarious road she has to travel or all those she cares for will suffer.
The series is about good and evil, light and darkness, love and hate, and how the line between right and wrong is sometimes blurred. A person’s actions can define them more than their intentions and love and destiny don’t’ always fall in line with one another.
DDS: What was the hardest part about writing the book?
It really depends on the story that is being told. In general I think getting to a place in your story where you can be somewhat objective about it is very difficult. In order to produce a good book you have to be willing to cut, change, and kill characters that you might love, but sometimes between writing the story and editing the story as a writer you have to flip the switch and be willing to cut our a scene that you might adore because it doesn’t add to the story in anyway.
DDS: What are your writing pet peeves?
As a reader present tense drives me crazy. As a writer I am at war with the word just.
DDS: Who is your favourite Character? (one of your own creation – published/unpublished)
Wow, this is really hard. I sort of love all of my characters (even the mean ones). I think my favorite to write is Holden. He is your quintessential bad boy which makes him extra fun. He says and does things that are so out of my normal realm it makes writing him exciting. But as far as wanting to hang out with I think that I would enjoy an evening with my main character from my mystery novel Dark Corners, Ella. She snarky and a writer and lives in a haunted house. What isn’t fun about that?
DDS: Now time for some fun facts about you. If ‘Guardian Trilogy’ was to be turned into a movie – which Actor/Actress would you like to see playing the characters?
I don’t actually write stories with actors in mind, so casting is normally a challenge. I think that for Olivia you would need someone pretty yet wholesome, sort of an Anne Hathaway type actress. For Quintus someone like Raoul Bova (the Italian guy from Under the Tuscan Sun). And Holden is always the hard one. It would need to be someone attractive, tough, not too soft looking, who could also blend in. I really have no idea who to cast. I will leave that up to the reader’s imaginations.
DDS: If you were to be stranded on the famous ‘Deserted Island’, what three things would you want with you?
If I am being serious I would say a satellite phone, a magnifying glass, and a really long book I could read while waiting for a rescue.
If I am being fun I would choose: a ridiculously hot man (i.e. Michael Fassbender), bottled water, and rum.
DDS: Who is your favourite author & which is your favourite book? I know it is beyond difficult, but you can name only one in each category!!
Jane Austen is probably my favorite writer. I love all of her books and Pride and Prejudice could very well be my favorite book. However I also like Edgar Allen Poe, Oscar Wilde, Jim Butcher, Brett Easton Ellis, Joseph Heller, Thomas Harris, Jeaniene Front, Karen Marie Monnig, etc.
DDS: One thing readers would be surprised to know about you…
I absolutely loved the show Jackass.
DDS: Besides writing, what else do you enjoy?
Movies, reading, traveling, museums, theatre, and playing games (especially trivia).
DDS: Anything else you would like to say to your readers/fans?
Thank you for reading and I hope to hear from you.
Contact the Author
June 4 - Meet & Greet at VBT Cafe' Blog
June 6 - Interviewed at Unnecessary Musings
June 8 - Character Interview at MK McClintock's Blog
June 12 - Guest Blogging at AZ Publishing Services
June 14 - Guest Blogging with Ami Blackwelder
June 14 - Interviewed at Incredible Indie Books
June 18 - Choices Review at Ereading on the Cheap
June 20 - Secrets & Choices Reviewed at Words I Write Crazy
June 22 - Interview & Books I & II Reviewed at A Case of Reading Insomnia
June 26 - Interview & Books I & II Reviewed at Waiting on Sunday to Drown
June 28 - Interview & Books I & II Reviewed at My Reading Addiction
July 2 - Review & Interview at B00k R3vi3wS
July 5 - Character Interview & Reviewed at Books, Books, and More Books
July 7 - Guest Blogging at Margaret West's Blog
July 9 - Interviewed at Reviews & Interviews
July 11 - Character Interview at Cait Lavender's Blog
July 13 - Character Interview & Review at Ramblings of a Bibliophiliac
July 17 - Guest Blogging at Froggarita's Bookcase
July 19 - Interviewed at Kimberly Lewis Novels
July 23 - Guest Blogging & Books I & II Reviewed at Kindred Dreamheart
July 25 - Guest Blogging at Wise Words