The world is in a state of turmoil, the likes of which it has never before seen. Russia is imploding in upon itself, the disintegration caused by radical revolutionists whose sole purpose it to simply further their own ideas and agendas. Rapidly lost are the initial reasons why these revolutionaries became patriots to their cause, which was the goal to save Mother Russia from an autocrat society. Bloodlust and greed however quickly began to poison the purity of their plan of salvation, and what was left was a part that strived for self-exaltation and Soviet rule.
It appeared that this bloodlust and affinity for violence seeped across the world, and it was not only Russia who was affected by the slow takeover of the government by terrorists. In the early 1900’s, the entire world was on the brink of change. It was unclear at times whether or not that change would be for the good or the bad, as the scale often seemed to wax and wane between the two in equal measure, but as the events in Russia began to escalate, so tipped the scales in favor of a devastating war, the involved the entire world. International affairs were in their infancy, and as such were difficult to navigate to say the very least. Unimaginable decisions demanded to be made in order to save all involved, and the source of that salvation fell into the hands of a very complex and unexpected candidate: Stephen Morrison.
In his trilogy, Moryak, Lee Mandel follows the lifetime of the very unconventional life of Stephen Morrison, at least which is what he is called throughout most of the book for the reader. Throughout his life, Morrison had to adapt into the identity of many different people, all whom were not assumed identities, but just different representations of who he housed within himself to serve the task he was presented with at that particular season in time.
Watching the same central character become so many different combinations of himself was quite an interesting concept to me. Nothing about him really changed in his core. He always remained the same person, his quirks and speech and fundamentals always remained, but because he always lived his life in such extreme circumstances and was shifted around into so many different roles, none of which lacked importance and dependence from others different portions of him were brought to the forefront, no matter how severe they were. Understanding this concept is tantamount to understanding the book. The trilogy blocks itself into the three persons of Morrison, the first being Morrison, the second Lev who turns into Morrison, and the third where the last transformation into Moryak takes place. It is obvious that you are not reading about three separate people, but you must understand that they are not simply three detached identities of the same person. Morrison lies beneath them all it simply depends on his calling as to which he can act out at any given moment. He is who he has to be. Which when you doubt his honor, only reminds you that at his core, Morrison is a man of valor.
Mandel does an excellent job of painting portraits of worlds gone by. His detail is immaculate and in depth that there is nothing left to try and figure out. The story is very fast paced and you must be able to keep up with the switch of continent and inner story line, but he does a good job of steering you in the right direction. Because of how quickly this book was paced and how wide of a location the book spread, sometimes it was difficult to realize where you were and who was speaking. There are many, many supporting characters in this book that all serve the main plot, but sometimes it was very confusing attempting to remember who was who. This especially happens when dealing with the Russian. Many of the names were so similar that it was very hard to know who was talking to who and to recall what each character’s arc was on their own as the confusion lent to blending them all together.
Because of the book’s length, I also feel that there were some very common redundancies that could have been left out. There was many times that I felt I was reading the same description of Morrison’s eyes and the anger that they held over and over again, simply from a different mouth. Perhaps if the descriptions had varied in inflection or had used other descriptive words I would not have felt this way, but as they felt verbatim, I felt I was just being told information I had already been provided on many occasions.
That being said I feel that Mandel did an excellent job capturing the seriousness and importance of the times in which Morrison lived. I gleaned a lot of information from this book. Even though it is a fictional novel, much of the historical content is accurate and that is something that I very much enjoyed and appreciated. I give this book 3 out of 5 morals. This is one of the best historical fiction books that I have ever read, and I hope that Mandel continues to write and bring more relevance and marketability to the history of not only our nation, but of the nations who have so greatly contributed to our history.
Hey guys!! So I know I keep saying I'm back, and then life happens and I'm pulled away for a bit. But no longer! I'm going to make time for the things I love, and right at the top of that list is this community and the friendship it offers! How has everyone been?! I miss you guys!
There are a lot of really awesome things happening on my end that I will be able to share soon. But for now, enjoy this #festive shot I took for Clean Teen Publishing!
So #FunFact, I used to be a professional theatre actress! I went to the College Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati for college, left early, and worked in NYC and all over the country for many years as a singer/actress in regional theatres! Since it's #halloween, I thought it would be fun to post my favorite costumes. My favorite roles will always be Janis Joplin and Tracy Turnblad in Hairspray. While part of me will always miss this, I am forever grateful for the path that I am on now. If I could tell this version of myself one thing, it would be to hold on as this dream changes, because a better one is dawning. #costumes #theatre #trickortreat #flashback
#happyhalloween! I hope you are having a great day and are planning something super fun for tonight! I love this #spooky #halloween book I got to #photograph for @pjboox! Creepy, right? I might have to swing by and pick it up so I can read it!
So what are your plans for tonight? I think the #mister and I are just going to hang out at home and watch #nightmarebeforechristmas and eat candy, because we are old, lol.#qotd #bookstagram
*** QOTD Below *** It's #monday! I had a great weekend with my mister getting things all set up in our new place! But I'll tell you what, it was exhausting! We went to #Ikea and got some new bookshelves that I am so excited to fill up with all my pretties! I'm having trouble deciding how to categorize them though. What do you think? How do you have your shelves organized?
These are some of the photos I have taken for @cleanteenpub and @pjboox! Love these #spooky #halloween titles!
I know this isn't #bookstagram related, but I can't tell you how proud I am of this guy and how thrilled I am to have him to myself for the whole day!! So many great things are going on for us right now, and I can't wait to share them with you guys. So for as much as I will always be a #booknerd, tonight I'm a #hockeygirl #lovehim
*** QOTD Below *** Guys. This series, though. This started out purely as a #coverbuy from my fav indie bookstore @pjboox (you should all check them out!) This is the third book in the series, and I'm #dying to read it! I'm usually skeptical about #vampires because they can be overdone, but this read is well worth it. Check out the whole series, The Maura DeLuca Trilogy by @cmelansonauthor on the pjboox website!
What are your favorite supernatural beings? I think mine has to be a witch. Or wizard.
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Things have been so busy lately! I miss all my #bookstagram buddies! I have finally come up with a schedule that will allow me to post regularly like I used to. Yay!! So #halloween is coming up, and I can never resist a good #theme for a photo! I read The Forlorned by @celticgirl33 last year and I really liked it!
So what I have missed while I've been gone? Any good reads I need to know about?
It's #Friday! I for one am very ready for the weekend! Starting next week, you will be seeing more posts from me one a regular basis as I am now pretty well settled into my new home and have some awesome projects on deck to share with you!
This week, I had the pleasure of creating some graphics to announce some upcoming releases for Clean Teen Publishing and Crimson Tree Publishing! Aren't these covers stunning! Bellamy and the Brute by Alicia Michaels will release in 2017 and is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast! Awesome, right? Silverwitch by Tamara Hanks Grantham will release in December and is Book Four in the Olive Kennedy: Fairyworld MD series! This series is one of my top three series in 2015 AND 2016, so you will want to pick this up if you haven't already! Book One, Dreamthief, is #FREE on all platforms and just won a #RONEAWARD from InD'Tale Magazine for best #NewAdult title of 2016!
There are SO many awesome books coming out in the next few months. Which ones are you most excited about?
Hey you guys! I know I have been radio silent, and I hated it, but I had good reason! I'm really excited to share that I have been brought on as editor and part of the creative team for the ongoing comic book series Solar Flare by James Haick! Working in this field has always been a dream of mine, and I can't believe it's starting to come to fruition.
In the spirit of geeking out over comics, what is your favorite comic book story/character? #bookstagram
**** QOTD Below **** Hey my amazing #bookworms! I hope your week is going well! I turned in a new editing project yesterday *yay!* so today I'm working on Social Media things to give my analytic brain a break.
Don't you just LOVE this cover?! I picked it up at my favorite #indie #bookstore, PJ Boox immediately after I saw it. This is the second book in The Maura DeLuca series, so once I'm done with the first one, which is also stunning, I'll be moving on to this!
When you are looking for your #Cover #buys, what kind of covers are you drawn to? #qotd #bookstagram