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Saturday, February 8, 2014

The Page Turners by Kevin T. Johns

The Page Turners by Kevin T. Johns 5 of 5 stars.

Violent bullies. Broken homes. Black magic. Killer fiction.

Nate and his friends are thrilled to discover an ancient book of magic spells hidden in the school library--they now have the means to stand up to the villains who make high-school life such a battle. But, when the book's dark magic releases a fictional killer in the real world, the teens will need to prove they have what it takes to be heroes, or fall as bloody victims in their own horror story turned real. (Book blurb)

A rag-tag group of grade nine nerds, each with his own difficulties at home, gather together for a book club called The Page Turners. The boys have found that the only place they truly feel safe from the critical eyes of the small town Maplewright and the dangers of being on the low end of the totem pole in highschool is within the walls of fiction and fantasy. When the boys stumble across an ancient text of magic spells, however, they couldn't guess what sort of darkness would emerge when those walls come crumbling down. 

The Page Turners is an incredible coming-of-age story for teens who have found comfort and refuge in the pages of fantasy, science fiction, and horror. The story is dark, lyric, and seamless as it transitions from excerpts of one fantastical story to the all too real lives of the three boys to story centers around and back again. The narrative is rich in imagery and foreshadowing as it progresses and the writing alone is sure to keep the reader enthralled. It, in itself, is a page turner.

Kevin T. Johns has crafted a wonderful piece that is sure to appeal to the audience of ages 12-16 and anyone who can remember being a bit of a fantasy geek. The differing situations and genuine reactions of the characters are sure to be relatable, in some way, to all readers. The author has an amazing gift for metaphor and uses in quite liberally--though with good structure--throughout the novel, giving the narrative a very unique and captivating tone. The story will catch and hold your attention from the very beginning. The varying stories within the story were my favorite part, and I would love to see Kevin Johns write a high-fantasy epic or something of the sort.

I would like to take a moment to point out how wonderfully put-together and bound The Page Turners is as well. It goes above and beyond many self-published or independently published print novels. It is a truly gorgeous book and well worth the full-market price. I could certainly see it proudly displayed on the shelves of an indie book store. 

All in all, The Page Turners is a fantastic read that I would suggest specifically for younger teens and die-hard fantasy lovers.

If you missed out on Kevin T. John's guest post Thursday, check it out here

Get your copy of The Page Turners!

Visit The Page Turners website here.

A special thanks to the author for giving me a chance to review this book. It has been a pleasure working with you!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Authors: Don't Go It Alone! - Guest Post by Kevin T. Jones

Guest Post by Kevin T. Johns, author of The Page Turners

The debut episode of Mistakes Rookie Authors Make, a weekly short-video series featuring writing tips for first-time authors, premiered online last Monday. 
The series is hosted by yours truly.
Unless you’ve already purchased my novel, The Page Turners, you probably have no idea who I am, and you’re probably asking yourself, “Just what qualifies this Kevin T. Johns guy to host a web series about mistakes rookie authors make in the drafting of their manuscripts?
Well, the answer is simple, my friends. 
I’m qualified to talk about the mistake authors make because… I’ve made them all myself!
Too long a book, too many character, a mish-mash of genres, not backing up my master copy, having no B plot, forcing rough drafts on friends and family, letting technology stand in my way, allowing myself to get distracted by other projects, giving in to apathy and laziness and self-doubt and fear – I’ve done it all folks!
Writing a novel is not an easy task, your high school education probably didn’t equip you with the skill-set required to write a novel. Heck, I have a master’s degree in English Literature, and it still took me eight years to craft The Page Turners.
Amongst the myriad of missteps I made along the way to publication, I think the largest was not seeking support, advice, and training from those who had been there before me, and already walked the path I was blindly stumbling my way down. 
Your average person doesn’t dive into advanced physics and expect to excel without the support of a teacher, and yet so many of us approach novel writing in just that manner 
We have this image of “the artist” in our society as this loner individual, existing on the periphery of society, capturing the metaphysical energies of the muse, and translating that power down onto the canvass or the written page. 
But that isn’t how it really works.
There is nothing metaphysical about writing a novel. Like everything else in life, what it takes to write and publish a book is hard work, perseverance, an adequate knowledge-base, and an appropriately developed skill-set.
I encourage any aspiring or struggling authors reading this to check out Mistakes Rookie Authors Make and sign-up for the mailing list to get a new episode sent their way every week, but if I could give them one piece of advice right now, it is this: Don’t go it alone, and don’t sit around waiting for the muse to visit you (she tends to be an often tardy mistress). 
Seek out the supports you need. The internet in an absolute wealth of knowledge. Get help from veterans, experts, coaches and mentors. Take training and attend workshops. And, most important of all, put in the hard work necessary.
There is nothing magical about the process involved in writing a novel. But, if you are lucky, that end product, the book itself, just might work some magic for your readers.

Kevin Johns is the author of The Page Turners, and host of Mistakes Rookie Authors Make, a weekly short-video series featuring writing tips for first-time novelists. Just visit http://yournovelblueprint.com to watch the latest episode and join the mailing list to get a new episode in your in-box every Monday!

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