Thursday, September 20, 2012

Detour to Dusk by Linell Jeppson: Guest Post, Review


A ragged band of vampires are cutting a bloody path of destruction from Alaska to Washington State! As frost turns the leaves gold and paints the high mountain treetops silver, hundreds of hunters arrive in Swan Valley for their annual deer hunt. What they don’t know is an outcast band of vampires have arrived, as well. Raphael Goldhawk, king of the high vampire council, has decreed the taking of human life unlawful. Raul Stannard, an ancient enemy of the half-human king, is determined to overthrow the council, even if it means the exposure and eventual annihilation of the vampire race. Four people, a Ferry County forest ranger (Roger Atley), an Indian spirit-walker (Harley Truefeather), and a young married couple (Brian and Holly Jensen), are about to be caught up in an ancient power struggle, and in a love affair as old as time itself. This novel combines ancient history with modern times, in an epic show-down between good and evil, love and hate.

I started writing when I was just a kid, but sat down and wrote my first novel (Detour To Dusk, formerly, The Hunt) when I was thirty years old. That was right after I read Interview With The Vampire, by Anne Rice. I loved her style and the way she brought the traditional vampire character into the modern world. Keep in mind that the book (DTD) was not published until 2011, and then re-published in May of 2012. I think it took that long to hone my craft. When I took the original manuscript out of the box and blew the dust off it, I realized that it was really only a long and elaborate outline. In the fall of 2010 I re-wrote the whole thing. With age, they say, comes wisdom and I needed the age and experience to know how to deliver a story with the right pacing, grammar, and syntax. My advise to new authors... give a work in progress time. Look at it with cold calculating eyes and be prepared to do many re-writes. Like good cheese and fine wine, a novel needs to mature, before it's ready to go out into the world.

I have written three books in the last three years. My novel, Story Time has done well with over 55- 4 and 5 star reviews. It was also nominated as the best read of 2011 by the Paranormal Romance Guild! This is a post-apocalyptic, science fiction thriller about a young girl who is faced with the end of the world. She and the people who gather around her do the best they can in a disintegrating society. Here is the blurb for Story Time-

In the not too distant future a young woman bears witness to the end of her world.

Earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic eruptions rock the planet, reducing cities to smoking rubble, burying entire islands and coastlines beneath cataclysmic waves.

Religious fervor and human evil erupt and entwine, becoming a maelstrom of madness in the days after, bringing with it the horror of apocalyptic war.

As a population in the depths of despair struggles to overcome insurmountable odds, can a single glimmer of hope flare into a beacon for the survivors?

This is her tale…the world is ours…and now, it’s STORY TIME.


AND, I am proud to announce that my third novel, Onio is soon to be released from World Castle Publishing! This story is about a half-human Sasquatch who falls in love with a human girl. The blurb-

In this modern world of science and high technology, in secret places deep under the ground and in the forest primeval, legends still walk the earth and what we think of as myth and fairy tale are all too real.

Driving home late one night, Melody Carver, bereft and grieving after the death of her mother, sees a strange creature standing on the lonely road. This being will change her world-view forever, and open her eyes to a reality beyond her imagination.

Melody’s chance encounter on that dark and snowy road will mark the beginning of a journey of discovery and wonder that will bring two worlds together in hope and despair.
Can one person bridge the gap between the ancient and the modern, the mundane and the magical?
An urban fantasy filled with adventure, romance, war, heartbreak and triumph!
ONIO! Unlike anything, you have ever read before!

Of course, Detour To Dusk is the topic today, and I wanted to talk about it for a minute. As you can see, DTD was written long before Twilight (and the sexualization of vampires became so popular). The vamps in Detour are ancient, prehistoric creatures, who, for the most part, just want to be left alone to grieve for the extinction of their race. An insane vampire though, by the name of Raul, is running amok in modern society. The blurb for Detour To Dusk-

A ragged band of vampires are cutting a bloody path of destruction from Alaska to Washington State! As frost turns the leaves gold and paints the high mountain treetops silver, hundreds of hunters arrive in Swan Valley for their annual deer hunt. What they don’t know is an outcast band of vampires have arrived, as well. Raphael Goldhawk, king of the high vampire council, has decreed the taking of human life unlawful. Raul Stannard, an ancient enemy of the half-human king, is determined to overthrow the council, even if it means the exposure and eventual annihilation of the vampire race. Four people, a Ferry County forest ranger (Roger Atley), an Indian spirit-walker (Harley Truefeather), and a young married couple (Brian and Holly Jensen), are about to be caught up in an ancient power struggle, and in a love affair as old as time itself. This novel combines ancient history with modern times, in an epic show-down between good and evil, love and hate. Grab your camping gear and hold on tight! It’s time for DETOUR TO DUSK!

I am also very happy to announce that Karen Fuller, and World Castle publishing picked up all three of my novels. I was published before with another house, but they went out of business. There was quite a long delay, and a few hard feelings but finally, I was able to give the rights to my books over to WC. This is quite a meticulous house...every book goes through a series of edits (three separate panels, actually), the art is beautiful, and the promos are effective. The authors in the house are very sweet and supportive of one another. So far, I couldn't be happier!


I will not lie, or try to exaggerate my writing skills. I write in an easy, every-day man style. It's one of the things that I always liked about Stephen King's work. I do know that as I gain more experience the sentences structures in my novels are becoming more complex, and hundred dollar words are popping up naturally. Again, (for the noobies) that kind of writing comes with time and practice, practice, practice! The Flesch-Kincaid index rates my work at the 7-8th grade level, which, at first flush, seems elementary but it is a good start. James Lee Burke is an author who strikes me dumb with admiration---his words are music, put to paper and yet, when you put his manuscripts in the F-K he rates at the 8th-9th grade level.
Again, when you are writing, take the time to check your grade reading levels--- it will give you an honest appraisal of your skills and ultimately teach you to be a better writer!

One of the things that I look for in a book is an emotional response. All of my stories have, at one point or another, some emotion- whether it is sorrow, fear, grief or passion. Cardboard, cut-out figures leave me cold and, unless the premise is totally interesting I will lose interest and put the book down if I don't care about the characters involved. At some point in a book the readers should feel a wave of feeling roll over them>>> at some point in writing a novel the author should feel tears two cents!

Thanks to all of you who have supported my writing efforts and for your interest in my strange tales! Support your local Indy!

4 Stars 

Once again, Ms. Jeppsen weaves a mesmerizing tale that is difficult to put down.  I was pulled into this story early on, and was astonished at the imagination the author infused into her writing.  The vampires in this story are fully realized, unique creations. These entities have existed and evolved throughout the ages along-side Homo Sapiens; powerful, secretive predators of man.  Now, facing likely extinction due to mankind’s relentless poisoning of the environment, there has a arisen an insane, yet forceful and charismatic leader of an outlaw band of rogue vampires.  This group despises humanity, and is ruthless as it leaves an unprecedented trail of destruction in its wake.  The past and the present intertwine as the drama unfolds in spectacular fashion.  In the present, a loving couple and two heroic men become caught up in the age-old battle.
There were a few times when I got confused by the time jumps, but the story never lets up.  I never had time to become bored as each event propelled the action forward.  This story is unlike any I have read before.  Complex relationships are exposed, and an entirely new, intriguing mythology is revealed that becomes wholly believable in the context of this novel.
Reviewed by Laurie-J  

Linell Jeppsen is a fifty something, semi-retired grocery store clerk, and high school custodian. She has been writing for many years but was recently picked up by Phyllis Scott Publishing for her novel, The Hunt. Before that she won third place in a science fiction contest for her short story, The Gag Gift, which can be found in the novel, Mixed Blessings and Other Short Stories, from America's Great Emerging Authors. Her work was also published in The Last Astronaut and Other Short Stories, by Phyllis Scott.
Website  |  CreateSpace  |  Twitter   |  Facebook  
Enter for a chance to win a digital copy of Detour to Dusk.
Comment on this post for a bonus entry.
Follow the author on Twitter  for another bonus entry.
Giveaway ends October 13th 11:59PM Central Time.


jenny milchman said...

So true about good writing needing to age like fine wine. And I completely agree about Stephen King. Nice to see you here and learn more about your tales of suspense!

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