First reviews - Waters and the Wild

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  1. Jo Zebedee

    Jo Zebedee Aliens vs Belfast.

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    'What a completely enthralling new novel from Jo Zebedee! Throughout 'Waters and the Wild' there's a haunting sense of disparateness - between goodness and evil, darkness and light, truth and lies and, movingly, between what each character believes they know and what really is. From the very opening chapter, the reader falls headlong into a mother's nightmare; on holiday in the Glens of Antrim, little Amy suddenly and completely disappears. We're drawn into spiralling panic as Amy's family search frenziedly for the lost child. It's at this point (and, boy, does this fascinating novel stand re-reading!) that a schism slowly begins to uncurl - growing relentlessly throughout the novel and fracturing spectacularly in the closing chapters. This may sound slightly generalised, but I am trying VERY hard not to give any spoilers - you'll understand when you throw yourself into this amazing novel and follow each twist and turn as Amy and her family race towards the breath-taking conclusion.

    This is no light-hearted fairy tale; a palpable sense of darkness permeates not only each character in the novel but also the lushly atmospheric surroundings of the Glens of Antrim. This is a place steeped in myth and legend which will prove to be either Amy's salvation or her destruction. It shelters and exposes; it protects and it injures. Nothing is guaranteed. Did the fairies take Amy all those years ago? Does she still possess fragile childhood memories of past times with them (and an ability to communicate with them, now, in the present) or is this little more than a troubling adolescent psychosis which will drive Amy remorselessly towards her destruction?

    Jo does something extremely clever (and utterly compelling) in this novel - she moves seamlessly from one narrator to the next and drives the action relentlessly on; we explore each person's assessment of Amy's deteriorating condition (including Amy's own terrified thoughts of what she's experiencing) as each undertakes their own personal quest. But who is correct in their understanding of Amy's condition and who (perhaps even Amy herself?) is driving her towards destruction?

    This is a lush, beautifully crafted tale of journeys - physical, personal, emotional and spiritual - set against a backdrop of the beautiful Glens of Antrim. These journeys (taken, quite literally, into the unknown) are driven by lost wishes, fervent hopes, horrifying darkness, growing doubt and heart-breaking moments of awareness that we cannot posses as adults what we once hoped and dreamed of as children. The magical creatures that people 'Waters and the Wild' are entrancing, beguiling and often seductively vicious. Yet no matter how terrified she may be of these faerie creatures, Amy feels compelled to return to them - just as her family, friends and helpful locals are driven to follow her in her ever more destructive quest to resolve her situation. And when, with superb sleight of hand, Jo finally unwraps the full story of Amy, her fractured family and these haunting creatures, the reader is filled with such a sense of sadness for what has been lost and what can no longer be. And YES - the delicate unravelling complexity of this novel demands that you sit right down and read the whole thing right through again!

    Absolutely fabulous work - eerie, atmospheric and incredibly evocative with gorgeous descriptions of the countryside and its people; I can't recommend this highly enough - and I've managed to get to the end of this review without giving away key plot points!! Take this book to the Glens of Antrim and read it with the waves crashing on the shore; I can guarantee that your goose-bumps won't simply be caused by the cool water!'

    Phew! First one in.....
     
    May 10, 2017
    #1
  2. Cat's Cradle

    Cat's Cradle Time, now, to read...

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    Yay!!! And am I correct, Jo - it's July 23rd when I will be able to begin my quest to experience the above sentiments?

    Huge congrats!! Truly looking forward to this, CC
     
    May 10, 2017
    #2
  3. Jo Zebedee

    Jo Zebedee Aliens vs Belfast.

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    Yes - July 23. But I'm always looking advanced readers if you want a preview...?
     
    May 10, 2017
    #3
  4. Cat's Cradle

    Cat's Cradle Time, now, to read...

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    Sure! Do you have my e-mail, Jo? (You'll likely remember that I'm a slow reader.:))
     
    May 10, 2017
    #4
    Jo Zebedee likes this.
  5. Vaz

    Vaz We're in the pipe, five by five.

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    Absolutely great stuff!

    Can't ****ing wait to experience this. *wonders if my Tardis keyring actually works* :D
     
    May 10, 2017
    #5
    Jo Zebedee likes this.
  6. Kylara

    Kylara Ghosting

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    Sounds great springs. Looking forward to ordering and reading!

    Not sure what advance readers do but happy to help out if I can be of use!
     
    May 10, 2017
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    Jo Zebedee likes this.
  7. Jo Zebedee

    Jo Zebedee Aliens vs Belfast.

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    They read a free ecopy and leave an honest review at launch :)

    @Cat's Cradle - I should do! I'll send on tomorrow xx
     
    May 10, 2017
    #7
  8. Stuart Suffel

    Stuart Suffel Well-Known Member

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    Great review Jo. Nice one.
     
    May 10, 2017
    #8
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  9. Jo Zebedee

    Jo Zebedee Aliens vs Belfast.

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    Thank you! I'm still doing a little happy dance!
     
    May 10, 2017
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    Stuart Suffel likes this.
  10. Jo Zebedee

    Jo Zebedee Aliens vs Belfast.

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    May 22, 2017
    #10
  11. Jo Zebedee

    Jo Zebedee Aliens vs Belfast.

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    Nice review thread here over on best fantasy books:

    Waters and the Wild by our own jo zebedee

    I have to say this was a book I was really nervous about but the first reviews have been my best, for sure and I'm starting to relax a bit more. :)
     
    Aug 3, 2017
    #11
    TheDustyZebra, HareBrain and Vaz like this.
  12. Jo Zebedee

    Jo Zebedee Aliens vs Belfast.

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    Nov 13, 2017
    #12
    crystal haven and HareBrain like this.
  13. Brian G Turner

    Brian G Turner He's a very naughty boy! Staff Member

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    I tried to join there, but while I have an account it's not been approved, and I got no reply when I emailed for help. I'd presumed it was actually a dead forum now!
     
    Nov 13, 2017
    #13
  14. Jo Zebedee

    Jo Zebedee Aliens vs Belfast.

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    Ah, that's not like them. They're pretty active actually and all very big readers - fewer writing related posts.
     
    Nov 13, 2017
    #14
  15. Brian G Turner

    Brian G Turner He's a very naughty boy! Staff Member

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    Maybe they just think I'm a spammer. :)
     
    Nov 13, 2017
    #15
    Jo Zebedee likes this.
  16. nixie

    nixie pixie druid Staff Member

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    Water and Wilds, I hope there is going to be more books.

    Are the fairies real or is she delusional? brought forth from a child's fertile mind and a mother's obsession?

    Why I have never met a Simon?
     
    Dec 28, 2017
    #16
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  17. Jo Zebedee

    Jo Zebedee Aliens vs Belfast.

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    Thanks, Nixie! I think this is a standalone - and I'm not sure I have a definitive answer, even now :)
     
    Dec 28, 2017
    #17
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