I have at last up - or is it down - loaded my first novel BLOOD ON THE SAND onto Amazon Kindle. This is very exciting!!!
It came out in Spain last year but will be available any day for all my English friends to read. I'll keep you posted on the link so you can get Kindling. You don't need to own an actual e-reader - you can down - or is it upload the programme onto any PC, Mac, lap or desktop.
It's all been so exhausting I now need to lie down in a darkened room so until the next blog, have a little read of this review to whet your appetites and thank you all for your support.
We are in the early ’60s. Cassi Samuels is an English girl of 18 who lives with her parents and older sister in London. She’s an innocent ingénue and one thing is clear: losing her virginity to just anyone is not on her agenda.
On a trip to Spain, she discovers the passionate world of bullfighting. On returning home, she covers her bedrooms walls with bullfight posters as if they were film stars. A little later, she flunks her exams on purpose and convinces her parents to allow her to complete her language studies through travel. Her destination: Andalucía.
Fate introduces her to a writer commissioned to write the biography of Rafael Romero “El Macho”, THE bullfighter of the day. As Cassi speaks Spanish, she is employed as interpreter which allows her to meet her idol.
But things do not go according to plan: although he is attracted to her, it is only to add her to his list of conquests before treating her with the utmost contempt. In any other circumstances, this should have sent her scurrying home but Cassi is inexperienced and thinks what has happened is normal. She is therefore prepared to give him another chance, especially when her very traditional family disinherit her after she tells them she’s in love with a bullfighter.
Locked away on his ranch expecting their child, she becomes the victim of a violent husband who has no intention of ever being faithful.
What captivated me most about this novel is without doubt the intensity of the characters’ feelings. It is a novel of extremes: on the one hand we have “El Macho” being cruel and cool, prepared to achieve his goals even if it means harming others – and on the other hand we have the young Cassi, naive, sweet and easy to manipulate often seeming silly for not opening her eyes.
There is no middle ground. The other characters are either charming or hateful and it is impossible not to side with Cassi and wish with all your heart that her situation improves.
This novel is very dramatic. It transcends the normal romantic genres which often seem superficial and trite with over-idealized love stories.
In this book, great passion is transmitted to the reader which shows that the author has achieved her purpose. The book becomes a perfect choice for those looking to enjoy a good read with authentic feelings and conflicts between the protagonists.
Importantly, the intensity of the feelings grow as the story progresses. When things start to seem predictable, something unexpected happens that grips your heart and gives you butterflies.
The author retains the reader’s attention and knows when and how to enhance the highlights. I often thought “too much melodrama” while reading, but I don’t think this is a defect: it is sometimes good to read a book that reflects the best and worst of human passions.
The other noteworthy aspect of this novel is its entertainment value. It hooks you with its simple yet fluid style and has everything a read should have. As many people only read for entertainment or to escape reality BLOOD ON THE SAND achieves this.
There is plenty of action and the story never stagnates. It has surprising twists, which in this genre are not always easy to find. It’s impossible to get bored.
If this were a film adaptation, it could be a pretty decent movie. The book is very visual and precisely because it is full of passion, it would work well on screen.
BLOOD ON THE SAND may not be the soap opera of the century and despite being listed as ‘romance’, it goes beyond the clichés of this genre. This is a work full of passion that never leaves the reader bored. The plot twists take place at the right time; the story is very well constructed. I enjoyed the flavours of gypsy Spain and the extremism of the characters. Formally, these are not positives, but I found them entertaining just the same.
In short, this is a highly recommended option if you are a demanding reader who enjoys books full of passion and feeling.