The Bookminder by M.K. Wiseman
Published by Xchyler Publishing on January 9, 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Pages: 444 – paperback
Source: Author (M.K. Wiseman)
About the Book:
Sired by magick and violence, sixteen-year-old Liara is found guilty of witchcraft and banished from her tiny village by the very priest who raised, then betrayed her. However, a mysterious mage steps forward to assume custody of her: Nagarath, the Wizard of Parentino, whose secret spellwork has long protected both Liara and Dvigrad from the ravages of war.
Despite Liara’s best hopes, Nagarath refuses to apprentice her to his craft but tasks her instead with the restoration of his neglected library. Liara gleans what magickal knowledge she can on the sly, determined to learn, come what may. But the first test of her stolen knowledge goes awry and renews an evil wizard’s interest in the people of the Limska Draga valley.
Only by tapping Liara’s inherent magick and joining it with his own can Nagarath protect Parentino from suffering a horrible fate. However, her discovery of his secrets destroys their fragile trust and ignites the darker tendencies of her gift. Now, he must rescue her from the influence of his mortal enemy before their powerful new alliance destroys them all.
About the Author:
1. How did you come up with the concept of your story?
In 2004 I had a very vivid dream that, afterward, wouldn’t leave me alone. Said dream basically detailed out one scene from the story, something so different and captivating for me that it stuck. Now, it must be noted that I was not writing at that time, nor did I intend to write in any professional capacity. But as this one nugget of an idea would not let me be, I started to form a story around it – Why were these people doing what they were doing? Who were they?
I think that working in the Preservation Dept of the campus library system had bled into my subconscious and that is where the magick system that rules The Bookminder developed.
2. What was the hardest part of writing your book, and how did you overcome it?
Point of View. Point of View. Point of View. I really love an omniscient narrator. I almost exclusively read omni POV. So to have to convert over to 3rd Person in service of the voice and narrative was a bit of a square peg / round hole issue for me. But the story is better served cutting out that distancing narrator that I so love. As to how I overcame it, I figured that as I’d put myself in the hands of professionals who wanted my book out there for the world, I had better do my part and learn and grow.
3. What is your preferred writing genre?
You know those authors whose work you have trouble finding in bookstores because they might be filed under YA, or maybe fantasy, or maybe even sci fi, or just the catch-all new-release fiction sections? Yep. That is the genre I like to sit in because that is what I like to read. Historical fiction and fantasy get a lot of lovin’ from me, as does light steampunk. As someone trained in librarianship, I value the concept of a genre but I don’t like to think of the walls between them as all that solid.
4. When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
That was a sort of slow shift for me. I mean, I started writing pieces of significant length in 2004 but really did so without any specific “I want to be a writer” aim. I was just compelled to try it out, I suppose. At that time, what I really wanted to be (and still do!) was/is an animator. But both are storytellers so it’s not that big a leap. I think I finally knew what I wanted when it came clear to me that my work is actually publishable. Then I found that I had a burning desire to keep going with it, wanting to add to libraries rather than just “worship” them as a reader.
5. Where do you actually write? Do you write on a schedule?
I actually spend a lot of my writing time in a big, orange, overstuffed armchair. Or, if I need a little more ‘action’ around me, I head off to a coffee shop to immerse myself in a slice of Life. As for any sort of schedule, I don’t have set hours or word counts or anything—that tends to mess with my muse’s office hours. Sometimes there are publishing deadlines to keep but that’s as tangibly schedule-y as I get.
6. Is there anything else you’d like your readers to know about you?
Quick rundown here: I’m a lefty. (Represent!) I’ve been known to unicycle about town. I play a Croatian instrument that not a lot of people have heard of. I like to order my huevos rancheros Christmas-style. And I’m just about the biggest Sherlock Holmes fan you could ever have.
Just for fun nerd list:
Star Wars or Star Trek? Star Wars (Though I am a sucker for Voyager.)
Hunger Games or Divergent? Neither? I know that sounds terrible. I just never got into the ‘dystopian’ thing. Too intense for me.
James Bond or Jack Ryan? Erm, *embarrassed blush* I haven’t ever read or seen a James Bond novel or movie and actually had to Google “Jack Ryan” to find out who that was.
Sherlock: Robert Downey, Jr. or Benedict Cumberbatch? Jeremy Brett. 🙂
Spock: Leonard Nimoy or Zachary Quinto? Leonard Nimoy.
X-Men or Avengers? That has changed for me very recently, actually. Avengers now has the lead because of the excellence of the recent movies—great dynamics.
Aliens or Predators? Cue another embarrassed blush . . . Complete and total unfamiliarity here for me.
Minions or Penguins? Penguins.
Batman or Superman? Batman *But only because he has such cool toys!
Harry Potter or Pirates of the Caribbean? That’s a tough one because I never really got into Harry Potter in the way that I’m sure this question is asking about and I loved “Pirates” so long as we stick only to the first movie.
Beatles or Rolling Stones? Beatles.
Peter Jackson or James Cameron? Peter Jackson. But only because I am largely unfamiliar with the main body of James Cameron’s work.
Steven Spielberg or George Lucas? George Lucas.
Vampires or Werewolves? Vampires
LARP or MORPG? LARP – always wanted to try one.
*Many thanks to the author for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. This, in no way, affected my opinion of this book.*
I think this book just cemented my interest in historical fantasy. I never used to like historical fantasy (or any type of historical fiction, for that matter); in fact, I felt weary every time I saw a book with that genre listed. I read ‘His Fair Assassin’ trilogy and actually liked it, but my trepidation toward historical fiction still remained. Then, I read The Spirit Gate and found it to be quite an enjoyable read, and so, I slowly opened up to the world of historical fantasy. The Bookminder just helped strengthen my resolve to give the genre a chance and read more books from it in 2016. When I first started reading the book, I didn’t know I had expectations until it surpassed them. I’m actually disappointed more people don’t know about this book, because it truly was a very enjoyable read. So many things drew me in, which I’ll be discussing below.
The characters were my favorite part of the book; they’re relationships with each other were just so dynamic, particularly Liara and Nagarath! I really enjoyed reading their dialogue and interactions. At the beginning of the book, I wasn’t sure if he was going to be the ‘love interest’ because I thought he was really old, as indicated by the gray hairs on his head, but the cover doesn’t portray him as that old. There were numerous moments when they showed… interest in each other, but I’m still not certain about where they stand in their relationship. Is it a mage-ward one? Or a partnership? The technicalities are so weird; I do wish this point was elaborated on more. Other than that, I thought the other characters were extremely well-developed. I love how they were interconnected with each other and how their stories tied together well at the end – it was very satisfying. It’s generally pretty hard to connect with characters in a fantasy story, but the author succeeded in drawing the reader in and making them feel the characters’ emotions & feelings.
The setting of the story also really helped the characters flourish in the reader’s mind. The world building was extremely well-paced, doing an excellent job in not confusing the reader, AKA me. Seriously, I was never puzzled. I never had to go back a few pages to check what had happened or where we were or what was going on.
The book’s writing itself was also very compelling. The descriptions were descriptive without being too over-the-top, allowing me to perfectly picture what was going on. This factor is also what kept me reading and completely hooked from start to finish – very gripping, indeed! In addition to that, I also love the language created in the book. I love how the book had its own terms and phonological expressions used, immersing the reader even further into the world.
Overall, if you’ve ever been hesitant to read historical fiction, I think this book could be a great starting point – I actually wish I started reading the genre with this! It’s an absolutely compelling read, pulling you into the character’s world very skillfully. The superb writing and descriptions also helped contribute to this. Make sure you get your hands on a copy of this book, since it’s OUT TODAY!
Giveaway + Tour Schedule:
We’re celebrating the release of THE BOOKMINDER by M. K. Wiseman with a blog tour and Rafflecopter give-away! Visit each blog each day for more chances to win lots of great prizes. If you like epic fantasy, you’ll love this coming-of-age tale of magic and wizards set in the Renaissance era.
January 9-16, 2016
|Sunday, 01-10||M. K. Wiseman|
|Monday, 01-11||Perpetual Chaos of a Wandering Mind|
|Tuesday, 01-12||Are You Afraid of the Dark?|
|Wednesday, 01-13||Belart’s Book Reviews|
|Thursday, 01-14||Dreams to Become|
|Friday, 01.15||JD Spero|
|Books in the Spotlight|
|Saturday, 01-16||Creativity from Chaos|
Don’t forget to enter our blog tour Rafflecopter give-away below,
on the blogs above, on our Facebook page, or on Rafflecopter,
with daily chances to win!