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Interview of Harley Venn, Anti-Hero of ‘The Villainous Viscount’ by a Modern Interviewer…

https://www.amazon.com/Villainous-Viscount-Curse-Venns-ebook/dp/B01KXU8QUC   Interviewer (trying hard not to stare at the anti-hero’s startling golden and athletic looks):  Lord Venn – that is the correct form of address for a viscount, I believe – it is a pleasure to meet you. Harley Venn (stooping to kiss her hand):  Charmed, Ma’am. You may call me anything you like, … Continue reading Interview of Harley Venn, Anti-Hero of ‘The Villainous Viscount’ by a Modern Interviewer…

Heathcliff – No Romantic Hero: Vengeance and Forgiveness in ‘Wuthering Heights’.

I have recently been reading Marianne Thormählen’s fascinating book ‘The Brontës and Religion’ (Cambridge University Press 1999). I shouldn’t be. Really, I should be doing more research,  but I couldn’t resist it. I came across it through its mention in the notes of the 1994 Wordsworth Classic Edition of ‘The Tenant of Wildfell Hall’ as … Continue reading Heathcliff – No Romantic Hero: Vengeance and Forgiveness in ‘Wuthering Heights’.

Review of ‘Conflicted Magic’ by Christina Herlyn: A Tantalising Taster for a Gripping Series

In the dystopian world which develops on the coming of the asteroid Atlas, there are certain grades of people. There are the Normals, who must be protected from the dreadful monsters who emerged from the volcanoes that erupted on the arrival of Atlas. There are also the Evolutionaries, born with a mutated gene – and … Continue reading Review of ‘Conflicted Magic’ by Christina Herlyn: A Tantalising Taster for a Gripping Series

Review of ‘When the Moon Whispers’ by Rebecca Lochlann: Brilliant and Dramatic

I was immediately drawn into this epic series, by the first book, which takes place in Bronze Age Greece. I was entranced by the unusual combination of outstanding historical research, excellent writing style, intriguing characters and exciting theme. Since then, and I have been eagerly following the progress of this saga of a battle between … Continue reading Review of ‘When the Moon Whispers’ by Rebecca Lochlann: Brilliant and Dramatic

Post Two on Albert Zuckerman’s quote: ‘What counts in judging a character for the reader is what we actually see the character do, as opposed to what is said about him.”

In my previous post, I was writing about Albert Zuckerman's quote and its applicability to questionable anti-heroes, or heroes who convert from anti-heroes into actual heroes in stories. I mentioned how often readers in general are happy to discount these characters' former shabby or downright hateful deeds, as long as they are not described graphically … Continue reading Post Two on Albert Zuckerman’s quote: ‘What counts in judging a character for the reader is what we actually see the character do, as opposed to what is said about him.”

Albert Zuckerman: ‘What counts in judging a character for the reader is limited to what we actually see the character do, as opposed to what is said about him.’

The quote is, of course, from Zuckerman's book 'Writing the Block Buster Novel'. It is made with reference to a certain Don Corleone. Zuckerman is showing how Puzo makes him sympathetic. That general advice is very good, but I was particularly fascinated by this quote in particular, as it is so astute, and explains an … Continue reading Albert Zuckerman: ‘What counts in judging a character for the reader is limited to what we actually see the character do, as opposed to what is said about him.’

Re-reading Mario Puzo’s 1969 ‘The Godfather’

I first read this at seventeen, longer ago than I care to admit. I thought the writing style was poor in places even then. I re-read it because Albert Zukerman recommends studying the techniques the author uses as a writer of popular fiction. He is all admiration of Puzo's ability to create a larger than … Continue reading Re-reading Mario Puzo’s 1969 ‘The Godfather’

Review of ‘The Tryst’ by Michael Dibden (1989)

"'One of my patients thinks somebody’s trying to kill him,” Aileen Macklin says to her husband over breakfast. A psychiatrist with a fading marriage, Aileen is haunted by the glue-sniffing lad who comes to her in a panic, begging to be admitted to a psychiatric hospital for protection. Gary Dunn clearly needs help: ravaged by … Continue reading Review of ‘The Tryst’ by Michael Dibden (1989)

Cardboard Characters, Lovable, Rounded Characters, Larger Than Life Characters,and Mere Ciphers: How Sympathetic Must a Character Be to Keep You Reading?

In my last post, I was talking about my new fledged writer friend being upset at the savagery of a one star review (though she felt a bit better when I showed some of the fine specimens I have come by). Readers of this blog might remember that the main criticism was that her book … Continue reading Cardboard Characters, Lovable, Rounded Characters, Larger Than Life Characters,and Mere Ciphers: How Sympathetic Must a Character Be to Keep You Reading?