Friday, May 31, 2013

Rabid Readers Awards 'Epitaph' 5-Stars

Tammy Dewhirst runs two review boards.  One for adult offerings.  One for children and Young Adults.  It's safe to assume she is a tad busy.  When The Epitaph of Jonas Barloff crossed her desk she states honestly, "I did not go into this novel expecting to like it."  Thank goodness she read with an open mind.  Within a few pages her expectations changed.
Not only does Dean produce a novel appropriate for an older young adult audience but what he does has to be one of the best and most unique horror novels I’ve read.
It must be said that Dean knows how to set a mood. The creepy settings and spooky goings on are downright ominous and written with an air of urgency. Through the inevitable twists and turns of the story there is a weight of expectation and knowledge that something big is coming and will not disappoint. There is a Civil War history aspect that not only blends well but lends credence to the “anything can happen” feeling one has while reading through the novel.
Feel free to immerse yourself into the entire review over at Rabid Readers Too.


Friday, May 24, 2013

Another Thumbs Up Review for Epitaph of Jonas Barloff

On Friday, May 24, 2013 I received an email from renowned blog reviewer Teri Polen stating that her review of my debut novel was on-line.  Teri is a seasoned reviewer, but with limited experience in the horror genre.  So this was almost like new territory for her. 
"Although one of my favorite genres, I haven’t read a horror novel in quite a while, and I don’t think I’ve ever read a YA horror, so I was very excited to receive this book.  I wasn’t disappointed."  -- Teri Polen 
Below is the jest of her review.  Take a look.  If you'd like to read the entire column, a link follows:

TERI POLEN'S REVIEW:  Calvin Dean has a wonderful way with words.  His descriptions of the abandoned house, the creepy graveyard, and the eerie surroundings made me feel like I was right there watching his characters.  The imagery created was spectacular and the writing flowed so well I’d be caught up in it and then shocked at something I never saw coming.  You gotta love that in a book.

The flashbacks to the Civil War added another dimension to this book and also helped to explain things happening in present day.  By the time I got to the last thirty or so pages, I couldn’t put it down and had to see how it ended, even though my husband was begging me to turn off the light.


Thursday, May 9, 2013

Top of the Heap Reviews "Epitaph"

I’ll admit being a little apprehensive approaching Joe Hempel to ask for a review of The Epitaph of Jonas Barloff.  After all, Joes runs Top of the Heap, a blog site dedicated to interviewing proven authors and reviewing books destined for the New York Times best sellers list.  Why would Joe give me, a rookie, a first time author, the time of day?  To my surprise, Joe accepted, but a funny thing happened on the way to the review.  Joe disappeared off the face of the earth. 
According to a blog entry at Top of the Heap, Joe receives “thousands (quite literally) of requests to be reviewed. Because of this he went into seclusion with nothing but his reader and his guitar. For over thirty days no one had heard from him, and people thought that the site would be going down, and he would never be heard from again.  I guess I pushed Joe over the edge.  The preverbal straw that broke the camel’s back.

This week, Joe emerged from his rock stating that he’d be much more selective in his choice of books, and that of the books currently on his desk, he’d toss out all but a handful.  I figured, oh well.  It was worth a try - not meant to be.  Then I receive an email from Joe.  The Epitaph of Jonas Barloff made the cut.  Whew!  I MADE THE CUT!  Joe Hempel, THE Joe Hempel reviewed my book.  I’m on cloud nine! 

So, would you like to know what Joe thinks about The Epitaph of Jonas Barloff?  Me too.  Let's head on over the Top of the Heap.  As Joe says about his blog, “I hope you enjoy your stay, and keep your book heap piled high!”  Click the link: