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This is my third review and it, too, is of something created by a fellow blogger. It never seizes to amaze me how creative you all are. I am honored that you choose to share it with me! Keep ’em comin’! Together we can reach the stars!
is of an e-book
entitled “The Exile”
by Shiloh Carozza.
I have to disclose that Shiloh generously shared a digital copy of her book with me free of charge. However, that does not mean that the opinions in this post are anyone’s but mine. You can always expect the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth from my reviews.
Drum roll, please.
“The Exile” is classified as historical fiction. When I hear ‘historical’ anything I shudder. When I am getting lost in a story, the last thing I want is to feel like I am back in school studying history. So, when Shiloh asked me to review her novel, I was a little skeptical, but she insisted I gave it a try, anyway. Even at the risk of me not liking it.
My worries were eased very quickly when in chapter one we dove right into the story and met two of our main characters without having to weed through a million pages of exposition and setting descriptions. Clare‘s arrival at a violent clan to serve as a slave is being observed by an already seasoned slave named Ari. We find out that Ari is not a stranger to sexual abuse and being roughed up by the clansmen, while Clare seems to be completely new to the world of servitude.
Soon, we find out that both of the females have all sorts of hidden secrets, which give them a reason to escape and fight for their freedom, even if it has the potential to kill them.
“The Exile” is a story of an unlikely alliance. The characters learn to lean on one another in order to survive, even though they probably would not be each other’s first pick for a companion. Most of all, it is a tale about friendship, including the good and the bad that comes with it. The novel showcases exponential personal growth of both characters, influenced by their past, present, the hope for the future, and one another. At the beginning, their outlooks on the world could not be any more different. But, as the story progresses, Clare learns to see the world through Ari’s eyes and vice versa.
They draw upon one another’s strengths to create a powerful team. Both characters complement one another nicely and I believe that either character on their own would not be able to hold the story as well as the duo did. As I flipped the digital pages, I became involved in the struggles the main characters had to face. As the story progressed, more wrenches were thrown into it, and I kept wondering what would happen next. “The Exile” is a great story about perseverance and sacrifice. If you like tales about women who slay, yet who are very relatable and down to earth, this novel is definitely for you. This is not a women’s empowerment story just for the sake of being a women’s empowerment book.
You might be wondering how the ‘historical‘ portion of the historical fiction comes into play. To me, it was very well incorporated into the story, and did not seem artificial or forced. The author tells us how the world looked like when clans ruled the area, how they pillaged villages, how they treated the less privileged. All of that enhances the plot without overpowering it.
The thing that I did not like was that this one specific plot point remained unanswered. (I apologize for not being more specific but I do not want to spoil the book for you.) It gnawed at me as I kept reading, and I have to admit that it disengaged me from the rest of the story a bit. All I wanted to do is see that part of the story brought to a close. Sadly, that never came to be. After finishing the book, I reached out to the author to discuss this particular thought with her. In turn, I was told that the reader is welcome to interpret the missing part in whichever way they want, but that it might actually be resolved in the future when the sequel comes out. A sequel? I have to say that piece of news excited me a whole lot! Oh, the things that could happen…
This concludes my review.
Just like the book from my previous review, this one is also self-published. To those that are not aware of how much work that implies – it takes a lot of time and potentially quite a bit of money to get a cover designed, your text edited, your work registered for an ISBN number, etc. If you are interested in learning more about this witchcraft, check out one of Shiloh’s posts “Publishing: When an Author Gets Down to Business.”
If you would like to get your very own copy of “The Exile,” you can do so via Amazon. Right now, the Kindle edition is being sold for only $3.99. A paperback version is also available for purchase.
Shiloh is a woman of many talents. Recently, she also published a kid’s book entitled “The Misadventures of Melvin the Missing Sock” that centers on a run-away sock. Will Melvin return home? What valuable lessons will he learn? An interesting story with beautifully whimsical illustrations.
*The star rating is taken from Amazon.com.
(It is quite curious that both of the books, so far featured in my Golden Reviews segment begin with “The E….” Is there some sort of a winning title equation in there that I do not know about? Hook me up, will you?)
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