Monday, 29 April 2013

The Miska Papers by Jo Hogarth - Book Review

Title: The Miska Papers
Author: Jo Hogarth
Publisher: Westminster Services
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 180
Format: E-Book - PDF
Genre: Paranormal
Source: Review Copy from Publisher

Blood sisters, bound by fate and a prophecy that is thousands of years old.

Dagny is a modern girl, cursed by an incurable blood disorder. Stuck on a boring forced 'work holiday' with her geneticist mother, she discovers an old diary of a gypsy girl just outside the castle of Vlad the Impaler. Between the dusty pages, Dagny discovers her true sister; Miska, the first Blood Sister born of Vlad the Impaler.

Miska's diary spins a tale of terror and vampire legends. Her family has been torn apart by the evil of her father and a family battle that has been raging for centuries. Together - through time, they will try to save the world, fight an on-coming plague and discover who they really are, and maybe even meet a boy or two along the way.

The first in the Blood Sister Series - A smart book that blends vampirism, the battle between dark and light, genetic disorders, and self discovery paired with action and adventure all in the face of an impending global disaster.
(Goodreads Synopsis)

I really wish I could have liked The Miska Papers more. The story idea appealed to me and is what made me grab a copy, not to mention the excellent reviews on here, but for me Hogarth failed to deliver in terms of the quality of the writing. There were so many sentences which, due to grammar issues, just didn't make sense (semi-colons where there should be commas, no commas where there should be commas, em dashes instead of hyphens etc.). Dialogue was fine when it was just one sentence at a time, but when there were larger chunks of dialogue the words the characters were saying just weren't believable; I would never have expected anyone to talk like that.

The characters were interesting and, as previously stated, I really enjoyed the idea behind the plot, but the relationships between the characters felt rushed and unrealistic, particularly the way characters bonded with each other straight after meeting.

All in all, I felt Hogarth had some really promising ideas and great imagination but the piece could have done with a firm editor's hand and some rewrites.

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