Monday, March 18, 2013

First Chapter Review and Giveaway: The Book of Paul: A Novel by Richard Long

The first chapter of this paranormal thriller came to me from the author through Tribute Books Blog Tours.

BLURB: "Everything you've ever believed about yourself...about the description of reality you've clung to so stubbornly all your life...all of it...every bit of an illusion."

In the rubble-strewn wasteland of Alphabet City, a squalid tenement conceals a treasure "beyond all imagining"-- an immaculately preserved, fifth century codex. The sole repository of ancient Hermetic lore, it contains the alchemical rituals for transforming thought into substance, transmuting matter at will...and attaining eternal life.

When Rose, a sex and pain addicted East Village tattoo artist has a torrid encounter with Martin, a battle-hardened loner, they discover they are unwitting pawns on opposing sides of a battle that has shaped the course of human history. At the center of the conflict is Paul, the villainous overlord of an underground feudal society, who guards the book's occult secrets in preparation for the fulfillment of an apocalyptic prophecy.

The action is relentless as Rose and Martin fight to escape Paul's clutches and Martin's destiny as the chosen recipient of Paul's sinister legacy. Science and magic, mythology and technology converge in a monumental battle where the stakes couldn't be higher: control of the ultimate power in the universe--the Maelstrom.

The Book of Paul is the first of seven volumes in a sweeping mythological narrative tracing the mystical connections between Hermes Trismegistus in ancient Egypt, Sophia, the female counterpart of Christ, and the Celtic druids of Clan Kelly.

COVER: Love it. I'm partial to ancient-looking covers, considering I'm a history lover. There are some used book stores down south I love to meander through when we visit. This cover definitely captures an ancient Egypt type of feel.

FIRST & SECOND CHAPTER: The first chapter introduces the reader to Martin, who is practicing smiling in front of a mirror. He gives up for a bit and changes to push-ups, before returning to his attempt at smiling.

Chapter two brings Rose into the picture. A former competitive gymnast, she is currently a tattoo artist. Living in less than ideal surroundings, she wonders why she's up so early. After working late, she gets up and does a yoga routine before retreating to the bathroom for a long, hot shower.

KEEP READING: I'm on the fence about this one. I don't connect with or like either of the main characters, yet, which may be part of the problem. The synopsis tells me there is so much more to happen that I don't think it's wise to stop reading. I had to read two chapters because the first one was so short that it did not much more than introduce Martin and give us a tiny bit of insight into his personality. Who has to practice smiling? Obviously it's tough for Martin. What does that mean? So the reader is left with an intriguing question that makes her want to know more.

Long paints some great description with the details he chooses. Martin doesn't like the whiny voice of the main character in the television show, The Nanny. He's physically fit enough to do two hundred push ups. Rose lives in an area that includes a park filled with junkies and crackheads. She's inked and pierced. All of these details are important to drawing the reader in.

I would definitely give this book a few more chapters before making a final decision.

Prices/Formats: $19.95 paperback, $2.99-$3.99 ebook
Publisher: Open Eyes
ISBN: 9780615648644
Pages: 492
Release: June 2012

Amazon paperback buy link ($19.95):

Barnes and Noble paperback buy link ($19.95):

Kindle buy link ($2.99):

Nook buy link ($3.99):

iTunes buy link ($3.99):

Richard Long writes to exorcize the demons of his past and manifest the dreams of his future. His debut novel, The Book of Paul, is a dark, thrilling, and psychologically rich supernatural horror/thriller that blends mythology, science and mystery into a page-turning addiction. Richard is also writing a YA novel, The Dream Palace, primarily so that his children can read his books. He lives in Manhattan with his wife, two amazing children and their wicked black cat, Merlin.

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


Tribute Books said...

Cheryl, thanks for wanting to dive deeper into Richard's book and for enticing readers with a look at the opening chapters. Appreciate it! :)

Cheryl said...

Thanks for stopping by, Nicole. It definitely sounds like it has promise.