In an attempt to connect with local authors, I stumbled upon the work of Michelle Brooks. I found the website for Michelle’s YA supernatural romance/mystery novel, Bone Dressing, and was instantly intrigued. I read the work, and I also reached out to Michelle, who graciously granted me an hour of her time to explain her publishing journey. In return we wanted to bring some attention to her work and share our thoughts on the novel.
DISCLAIMER: As always, this review is just my opinion. Feel free to agree/disagree.
The book is a very intricate tapestry woven of different threads, and this is just the first in the series. There is a lot going on in this book: reincarnation, shape shifting, and interference with the time-space continuum. Sometimes I found myself a little lost and wondering how and why, but when I put it in the context that this is only the first installment in a series of seven, I figured that many of my questions will be answered in later books in the series. This book has great merits, especially if you enjoy supernatural experiences mixed with a paranormal romance that spans across space and time.
I loved that I could identify with Syd and some of the experiences she was going through. If you strip away all of the physical setting and the supernatural events happening around her, some of the emotional revelations she has really struck a chord with me. I even told Michelle some parts felt so personal they seemed written just for me. In a YouTube video Joanna Penn contends that we read fiction to escape, but I would have to agree more with the opinion from the writer of this 2007 NY Times Article that states that we read fiction to find ourselves. I would assume that everyone’s motivation is different, but for me it is more about finding myself in a character rather than trying to escape. I’m trying to make sense out of my world, and I can do so by seeing it through the eyes of a character with whom I can empathize, it’s also the motivation behind my writing.
As far as the writing style there is one idiosyncrasy that happens a few times throughout the book that gave me pause. A reference to something that is assumed to be unknown to the reader is clarified in an awkward way. For me it interfered with the syntax of the sentences.
Overall, I found it to be an agreeable read. I am curious to know what happens next. There is a very engaging love story happening between Syd and the mysterious Beau. Hopefully, I’ll have time to get to other books in the series. I’ll definitely be looking out for the second book, which Michelle says is getting closer to publication. If you like dark and twisty, irreverent behavior, mangled up with strange occurrences and time-traveling panthers then I suggest you try Bone Dressing.
We’d like to take this opportunity to thank Michelle again for her time, and we wish the best of luck for the next installment in the series.