Friday, November 9, 2012

First Chapter Review: Assula: No Neck, No Problem! by John Miles

The first chapter of Assula: No Neck, No Problem! was submitted by author John Miles. This is a humorous vampire story.

BLURB:   Assula is the story of a young man who becomes—quite by accident a vampire, but with the unusual proclivity of biting butts instead of necks.

The premise of the story is that only those with evil in their hearts become vampires, all others simply die when attacked by a vampire.

What sets Assula apart is that he was apparently attacked by a very powerful vampire, perhaps Dracula himself, the same evil fiend who turned Assula’s Uncle into a vampire.

While the premise of the story is obviously meant to be humorous, and yes, at times even salacious there are serious themes regarding the pain of being different, of not being able to share the truth with others when you’re sure you won’t be believed, as well as the fear of abandonment.

But Assula does have quite a romp in New York and London and you never know, perhaps even lurking behind you.

COVER:  Love it. Perfect for the genre. The ravens in the background make me think of Poe.

FIRST CHAPTER:  Bitten as a teenager, Assula has this odd habit of biting people in the rear end. He's different than vampires in other ways too, but it's his butt-biting habit that encourages his family to place him on a ship bound for New York to stay with his aunt and uncle.

Life in New York is strange. He misses his bear named, Chappy. People in the city don't take kindly to being bitten in the butt. It's definitely going to take Assula time to adjust to his new surroundings.

KEEP READING:  Probably not, though I have to admit I laughed through most of this first chapter.

If there were ever a self-published book that screamed for an editor, this one is it. This story of an unconventional vampire has promise, but that is diminished by poor grammar and a lack of focus. Just reading the blurb above, you find errors. Those same types of errors and others, plague the first chapter, making it somewhat of a rambling mess. In addition, the first chapter wanders among a heavy amount of backstory, Assula's reunion with Uncle Vlad and Aunt Helga in New York, the village he left behind in Romania, and his first outing after arriving in New York. That's a lot to throw at a reader in only a few pages.

The reason I opened this section saying I probably wouldn't continue instead of saying a definite no is that I feel this could be a great story if an editor helped the author tighten it up and remove those grammar issues. I hope the author keeps working at it, because he has a unique idea that looks like it can be funny and meaningful all at the same time.

  • File Size: 671 KB
  • Print Length: 334 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B009J2KFKK
  • Current price: $.99 

I received the first chapter of this book from the author. This review contains my honest opinions, for which I have not been compensated in any way.

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