Title: Unholy Testament – The Beginnings
Genre: Gothic Romance/ Paranormal
Author: Carole Gill
Published by: Tudor Rose Press
Date Published: November 4, 2012
Purchase link: Amazon
The day Eco first laid eyes on Rose Baines was the day she discovered (The House on Blackstone Moor) her family’s savage butchery at the hands of her mad, incestuous father.
“I saw you leave the house that day, Rose, that terrible day you discovered your family butchered. I saw you…”
Eco realizing he has fallen in love with her pens a confession documenting all of his sins committed in the course of his immortal existence. The one request is that Rose reads his confession.
Rose, having become his captive, is forced to read this unholy testament of his.
From Ancient Egyptian vampire cults to Roman vampire brothels to The Dark Ages, The Crusades, The Black Death of 1348 to his meeting with child murderer and Satanist, Gilles de Rais, concluding with his wicked affair with the Blood Countess herself, Erzebat Bathory.
Eco is, if nothing else, frankly and brutally honest. The pages are filled with debauchery and vice and murder–yet, there is also love or what Eco swears is love.
The story is continued in Unholy Testament – Full Circle, to be released in early 2013.
At first, I didn’t want to read this book basically because of the cover. I don’t like it. I know the saying “Don’t judge a book by its cover”, but let’s admit it, a beautiful image attracts more readership. Anyway, I decided to pick this up and try to read. And here goes my short review:
The first two chapters started slow, and adding the dull effect of the cover art to me, I felt my interest slipping away. I had my fair share of reading vampire-inspired novels, and I think that others are just echoing what published authors already did. I half-expected this book to turn out that way, but hey, I was in for a surprise.
I love history, and the author weaved her story from that. Connecting her vampire characters to what happened in the past, I was brought to Ancient Egypt, Rome, The Crusades, The Black Death, and so on. I liked meeting historical figures and I am glad to note that the author used facts as basis for her story. I hate it when the writing was poorly researched; it’s like an insult to the readers’ intelligence.
As for the characters, I couldn’t understand them at first. They were vaguely described in the beginning which left me confused. However, when the story moved on, there were “character spotlight” where I have met them. The writing and introduction were good and realistic. There were human emotions there. I felt frustrated to some characters, but I guess they were created with that intention.
Overall, this book is okay to me. The story ended so unkindly, but this is to make me feel hopeful of the next book that will come soon.
*I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange of an honest review*
Monica: Thank you for giving us the honor to chat with you. May you please tell us something about yourself?
Carole: I enjoyed reading gothic romantic fiction at a young age. From Rebecca, I discovered Jane Eyre and from there, I went on to being haunted by Wuthering Heights, but I also discovered Edgar Allan Poe!
I think somewhere along the line, I combined gothic romance and gothic horror in to my writing. I would say that describes my fiction as succinctly as possible. It’s gothic romantic horror.
Most days, you will find me pounding away at my laptop. When I am not there; I am walking my dogs on windswept Yorkshire farmland and moorland, thinking about what I am writing for that day.
My husband and I and our two Parson Russell Terriers don’t live that far from Haworth in Yorkshire; the Bronte home and parsonage. Their world is all around me and greatly inspires my writing. It always has and it always will.
Monica: What inspired you to write this book?
Carole: Well firstly let me say I was inspired to write the first book in The Blackstone Vampire Series: The House on Blackstone Moor because I read that gothic romance was passé. I didn’t think so, hence the first book. There was so much feedback and interest in the characters that I decided to write the Series. By the way, The House on Blackstone Moor is free on Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble and Smashwords!
Unholy Testament – The Beginnings is the second in the series. My inspiration is Eco, the demon spawn of a fallen angel. Eco appears in The House on Blackstone Moor. He is the hero, Louis Darton’s immortal enemy.
If Eco carries the seeds of hell within him, Louis Darton endeavors to do less evil than himself. Louis is the romantic hero in the Series.
In this and the volume that follows, Eco recounts to the woman he professes to love all of the sins he has committed in the course of his entire existence. It is his confession and it makes for some pretty shocking reading. It is by the way, continued in Unholy Testament – Full Circle.
I suppose the real inspiration for the book focuses on the question as to whether or not a demon can actually feel love, and further what complications may arise from that.
Now this is an evil demon. He is an immortal (vampire) who cannot be destroyed. He is also highly intelligent. The question is if his love is rejected, what does he do about it?
Monica: Is being a writer your dream profession?
Carole: Yes, it’s all I do now. But that is because I have an angel for a husband who gave me the greatest chance he could have which was to write 24/7. I turned back to writing some years ago and haven’t stopped!
Monica: I am a new writer and blogger and I am interested to know about author’s writing environment. Do you prefer writing in pen and paper or in computer?
Carole: Computer! I mean we advanced from papyrus. I think the newest technologies should always provide the basic tools.
Monica: When you want to take a breather from writing, what do you usually do?
Carole: I love to read and watch films; when I feel the need for a break I just focus on something else. Getting away from the keyboard even for a short break does help!
Monica: We have agreed and accepted that all writers are also readers. What are the books currently in your nightstand?
Carole: Well actually they are on my kindle. My husband bought me a kindle last Valentine’s Day and I love it. There are free offers and it’s wonderful!
To answer your question: Stephen King’s Bag of Bones is as well as Dublin by Edward Rutherford in preparation for the second novel I am writing for Aiden James’ Dying of the Dark Vampire Series.
Monica: Who are your literary influences?
Carole: Daphne DuMaurier, Charlotte Bronte, Emily Bronte, Edgar Allan Poe and Anne Rice.
Monica: If you could be a literary character who would you be and why?
Carole: I would be the second Mrs. DeWinter in Rebecca, (Daphne DuMaurier) and I would be on a quest to discover all the darkness that was implied in the novel. I’d do that by hiring a private detective to investigate the first Mrs. DeWinter and also Mrs. Danvers to find out everything possible because I am certain there was a great deal to find out!
Monica: Any current/future projects?
Carole: Yes! I have just completed the first novel for Aiden James’ Dying of the Dark Vampire Series. I have done the back story for Chanson who appears in all three of his novels. I am also to write two more novels in the series.
With regard to The Blackstone Vampires Series, I am writing the fourth book in the series, as yet untitled but let me say the two main characters appear at the end of Unholy Testament – Full Circle. Further, if you love Coppola’s Dracula 1992 film, you will enjoy the fourth book in my series! J The book will be out sometime in 2013.
Monica: What can you advice to those aspiring writers?
Carole: Write and read as much as you can. Write what’s in you to write. If you enjoy a particular genre, then experiment with it. Write whatever you feel, try anything and be bold!
Try to write regularly, even if your time is limited. There are some great books out about writing, one of the best (if not the best) is Stephen King’s On Writing. There is some great advice given in that book.
Also I‘d say to work on your ‘voice,’ every writer has a narrative voice. That is the writer’s ‘fingerprint.’ It distinguishes one author from another. If you think about your favorite authors, you will see, I am sure, that each is unique in their telling of a story.
And most importantly, I would say to new writers, just go for it! Write like mad and don’t stop!
Just for fun.
Forest or beach? Beach.
Coffee or tea? Coffee usually!
Cats or dogs? DOGS!
M&Ms or Skittles? M & Ms
Coke or Pepsi? Coke
Printed books or e-books? ebooks
Buses or trains? Trains
About the Author:
I wrote my first story at age 8. It was sci-fi but as both my parents were sci-fi fanatics it wasn’t a surprise.
I continued to write however life got in the way as it often does, and it wasn’t until 2000 that I turned back to writing. I joined a local writer’s workshop and was greatly encouraged to keep up with my writing and to send things out. Shortly afterwards, I was selected by Northwest Playwrights of England for further development but found I preferred fiction writing.
Widely published in horror and sci-fi anthologies, The House on Blackstone Moor is my first novel. It is a tale of vampirism, madness, obsession and devil worship.
Set in 19th Century Yorkshire, its locales include Victorian madhouses as well as barren, wind-swept Yorkshire moors. The story is a marriage of horror and gothic romance. I think it can best be described as being gothic paranormal romantic horror.
I suppose you could say I want to put the Goth back into Gothic.
Living in the area the novel is set in, was very beneficial. Also, as a great admirer of the Brontes and frequent visitor to the Bronte Parsonage in Haworth, I found myself nearly obsessed with recreating the gothic romantic narrative.
Having been employed in a hospital which had been historically a workhouse and asylum in Victorian times, I was able to add great realism to the depiction of the asylums as described in my novel.
The next in the series, Unholy Testament – Full Circle is the continuation of Eco’s confession. It will be released in 2013.
Book 4 in the series follows that.
Connect with the author: Website
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