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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

(Book Blog Tour) A Season of Transformation by Jayne Fordham (Review+Interview+Giveaway)

Genre:Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
Publication.Date  March 31st 2011
Published By:  Jayne Fordham
WebsiteJayne Fordham

A Season of Transformation- Goodreads
My review copy:eBook from the author (thank you!)
Where to get: Lulu | Amazon

     A Season of Transformation is a young adult fantasy/ romance novel set in the contemporary world. It is the story of five young people drawn together to complete a Quest, to protect their town from destruction. In order to defeat the story’s villain, Maxvale, the five virtual strangers must come together and not only forge a bond of trust but become proficient with the ‘abilities’ temporarily bestowed upon them.

In the midst of the lead up to the battle each of the young people has their own personal struggles they are trying to deal with. Lucas, an adopted and bitter teenager struggles to become the person he wants to be whilst developing feelings for Makenna, a rich kid who doesn’t like his attitude. Bonnie is a ‘gothic’ that is dealing with an alcoholic father, Ben the school nerd and Adam the class clown are trying to break free from their high school stereotypes. Can these five teens put their differences aside to defeat Maxvale and save their town?

     I scan the containers stacked side by side in matching Tupperware containers. Cornflakes, Weet-bix or Coco Pops? I think I’ll go with Cornflakes today- something reasonably healthy after the whole packet of fairy floss that I shared with Tamsin and Aliysha last night. Before I reach up to grab the container I stifle a yawn and rub my eyes and try to open them up real wide to help me feel more awake.
     I scream and jump backwards when my eyes re-focus. The Cornflakes are hovering outside the cupboard… in mid air. My eyes widen.”
"She extends her arms out in front of her. Well at least it feels like she is extending out her arms. But there is nothing there. She has no visible body, no hand no arms. How could this be?"
"'Have you cast some kind of spell on us?' Adam jokingly asks Bonnie.
  'I’m a gothic, not a witch', she replies sharply, obviously not finding him very funny."

     A Season of Transformation by Jayne Fordham is definitely one of my favorite reads this summer!  It’s a magical story, full of super likable characters, great action and sweet romance. This book is too charming and entertaining to miss out on!

     This great new young adult fantasy/romance novel tells a story of five teenagers from Catherine Vale, Australia. They’re all classmates at the local high school, but that’s about all they have in common. In fact, having never really spoken to one another, they neither know anything about each other nor do they wish to. Makeena is beautiful, smart, rich and very popular. Bonnie is a shy “gothic chick” who doesn’t like to stand out. Lucas, abandoned by his biological parents, is the troublesome adopted kid you should stay away from. Ben is the school nerd, the smart kid who always knows the answers to teacher’s questions. And finally, there’s also Adam, the class clown, who turns everything into a joke. So what, you may ask, could possibly bring those five kids together? How about an evil spirit of eighteenth century murderer, seeking revenge on the community of Catherine Vale? Yup! That could work! Makeena, Bonnie, Lucas, Ben and Adam are suddenly drawn to each other. A mysterious power seems to be guiding them, and they discover an antique box buried in the ground. From the message in the box they learn about the dark history of their town and how their ancestors fought and defeated the cold-blooded murderer, Brian Maxvale. They also learn that he vowed to come back every hundred years to haunt and slaughter the members of the small community. How can a group of teenagers stop a vile and blood-thirsty spirit? Well, they’re not just any teenagers! The five of them have innate abilities and strength that have now been activated due to the pending threat. Can they learn to control their powers and work together as a team before the evil spirit of Maxvale returns? 

     I liked this book a lot! It was a fast and enjoyable read. Although it’s a supernatural adventure, its main focus was on the developing friendship and romance between the five protagonists and I really liked that about it. Thanks to Jayne’s flawless storytelling, the book reads smoothly and before you know it, you’ll hit the virtual back cover. Although there was some awesome action here, this wasn’t an action-packed novel, which is good, because there’s plenty of room for that in the following installments. Bringing the characters to life through vivid and detailed descriptions was, in my opinion, a brilliant move on Jayne’s part. She made them seem so real! I quickly got very attached to them and wanted to know even more about them. I just love stories like that, when you don’t feel that you’re just a passive observer, but you actually get engaged in their stories and feel what they’re feeling

     Another great thing about this book is its solid plot and character development. I really enjoyed seeing the five seemingly unrelated people come together on a quest to save their town. I liked how they were slowly getting to know each other, forming a bond that was growing stronger with every day. The way Jayne tells it is not only believable but also quite lovely and exciting. The romance part was fantastic! Makeena is such a cool chick, and I just loved seeing her fall for Lucas. They’re like the most adorable book couple ever

     Most importantly the ending was phenomenal! Jayne Fordham skillfully tied up all the loose ends, delivering a satisfying conclusion to a deliciously captivating story. I was amazed at how perfectly balanced the whole thing was, how good it felt to get to know the characters and how fun it was to follow their stories. Hands down, it’s a really great read. 

     This book definitely tickled my inner geek. I am huge on stories involving supernatural powers, quests to save the world, cool actions, evil villains, revenge, etc .. A Season of Transformation reminds me in part of Heroes (TV Show) and in part of X-Men (cartoon, movies). It also reminds me of my childhood days when I used to watch Sailor Moon over and over again. It’s cool like that! Bewitching, sweet and often touching, this book was pure fun. I am looking forward to the release of the second book in this series!

This review is posted as a part of A Season of Transformation Virtual Book Tour organized by Jayne Fordham. For more blog stops, please visit her website: HERE.

And now the interview! Please give a warm welcome to Jayne!
E: Evie
JF: Jayne Fordham

E: Welcome to Bookish Jayne! Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
JF: Hi Evie, thanks for having me. I am an Australian indie author who works as a psychologist. A Season Of Transformation is my debut novel.
E: Who or what inspired you to write A Season of Transformation?
JF: I was writing short stories and I started a couple of novels but I just couldn’t come up with something that was really interesting. I was writing a lot of 'chic lit' and I just found it a bit boring. Then I read the Twilight series, probably my first encounter with the fantasy genre. Now I am hooked! It inspired me to add something new to my usual romance novels and to bulk up the plot a bit more. I began to think about the characters and then I had the vision of the box that the teens stumble upon where their abilities were evoked. It all took off from there...
E: Do you mind telling us how long did it take for you to write your book?
JF: The first draft took only three months to write. But the first draft has certainly evolved during the past two and a half years as I edited, re-drafted and restructured the story.
E: How would you describe the A Season of Transformation in 5 words?
JF: Teenagers with powers on mission
E: Are any of your characters based on people in your own life? Which one do you feel is the most like you?
JF: No, the characters are pretty much made up. Of course there are qualities in each that I have probably taken from people in my lives. I guess I mostly relate to the protagonist Makenna. She is caring, wants to do the right thing and looks for the good in people. She is also curious about people and as a psychologist; I tend to have those qualities too. But I’m probably not as assertive as Makenna. I am also quite shy when it comes to meeting new people, so I also relate to Bonnie a bit in that respect.
E: Where is your favorite place for writing? Do you have any special writing rituals?
JF: Hmm, well a  cup of tea and chocolate usually gets me motivated to sit down and start typing. I also need a tidy desk or I find ways to procrastinate. On sunny days I like to sit outside with a pen and notebook and seek inspiration that way.7. What advice would you give to aspiring authors who are interested in writing Young Adult Fantasy/Romance novels?
Well, I am by no means an expert! If you want to write in the young adult fantasy romance genre, then I suggest you just start writing it! What's exciting about writing is that you will always learn something new along the way. It has been great receiving feedback from readers as it will help me to continually improve my work.
E: What genres do you like to read in your free time?
JF: I have fairly eclectic tastes. I enjoy romance, paranormal, general literature and I’ve recently been getting into historical romance. I also like reading memoirs.
E: Which of your favorite books would you recommend everybody to read?
JFDefinitely Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen for those who enjoy classics. Now I am going to plug some Aussie authors. Historical fiction fans should check out The Wedding Shroud by Elisabeth Storrs. Crime (chic) fiction fans should check out author Marianne Delacourt's Sharp Shooter (Tara Sharp) series, for an outback romance novel read Fleur McDonald's Red Dust and for some teenage action hunt down John Marsden's Tomorrow series. That should keep you busy for awhile!
E: Do you have any other hobbies that you enjoy?
JF: Yes, I love to play soccer. I play in a local women’s competition and it is a lot of fun!
E: If you could have a paranormal power, what power would you want and why?
JF: Ah, well there have been a few bloggers who have asked me which superpower I would like out of the five my characters have in the novel. So it's nice to have a bit more choice because if I could have any power I think I would like to fly! Then I could travel anywhere in the world without paying ridiculous airline prices! It costs a fortune to leave Australia!
Random Questions:

- white or dark chocolate? White chocolate
- coffee or tea? Tea :)
- favorite fictional character? Elizabeth Bennett (Pride and Prejudice)- strong willed, determined and stubborn!
- favorite movie? It's a tie between The Notebook and Little Women.
- favorite song? Gosh that's a tough one. Anything sung by Aussie rock band Powderfinger.

- ebook or printed copy? Definitely a printed copy. Although I have just started using my brand new Kindle and I must admit it is very convenient!

Jayne, thank you so much for joining us today!  
I'm looking forward to reading and reviewing your books!

Giveaway Time! 
Interested in winning an e-copy of A Season of Transformation?

Open to everyone
Ends: Sunday, August 7th

*Mandatory entry: Just leave a comment on this post! That's it! :)

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About the Author
Evie is the Blogger behind Bookish. She enjoys reading many different genres, especially YA, Paranormal, Contemporary Fiction and Fantasy.
She loves talking to authors and is always happy to welcome them for interviews, and guest posts. She also likes spreading the love for awesome books and  chatting with fellow book-worms.
You can find Evie here: Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Shelfari | The Library Thing


RRoxana said...

Amazing interview!

Bloody Mary said...

I'd really love to read this book, sounds extremely interesting...

Renu said...

This book sounds fricking awesome. Love the cover!

DearDamon said...

Great interview!
The book seems sooo interesting! I woul really enjoy to read it! :DD
Lina :)

Bonnie said...

I have had my eye on this book for a little while now and am so happy to hear that you liked it. I love a book with a primary focus of developing characters and relationships! Also, thanks for hosting a giveaway - I would LOVE to win a copy of this book!

Bonnie @ HandsAndHome

Peggy said...

This book sounds good! Thanks for the chance to win!

StuckInBooks said...

Nice! Thanks for the giveaway.


Let's Evaluate said...

great interview! and thanks for the giveaway, the book sounds really good.

Erin @ Let's Evaluate

majoy said...

I would love to own this one!
I'm in love with the review!:)

Christine said...

Thank you for the interview, the great review, and the giveaway! Awesome. :)

ceeenndee at gmail dot com

Sofija Kapranova said...

Thanks for great contest!

pandasrule said...

I have got to read A Season of Transformation ASAP!

Thanks for this giveaway

ajiehuang1997 (at) gmail (dot) com

Margaret said...

I definitely want to read this! Thanks for the giveaway!


Darlene said...

Please enter me in the draw!

I'm following you on GFC (Darlene), and my email address is darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com.

Thanks for the giveaway!

micia said...

Please enter me
Thank you for this giveaway

medinahusa said...

Really great interview, and the book sounds really good!
Thank you for the giveaway! :)


aurora M. said...

something different here for me but I am willing to give this book a read. Thanks for the look.

Krystal said...

I've been really wanting to read this, for one-I love the cover!!! Thank you.

Raspberry said...

Ok, this is not only not my kind of book, but VERY not my kind of book. One of those where you're sure the book is just fine...if you dont' have personal biases against certain plotlines.

Mistery Shopping said...

omG! u definitely convinced me to read it and to want it!

aparajita said...


Asenath said...

It reminds you of Sailor Moon?!? Ok, I have to read this now!

Sky said...

I hadn't heard of this book until now! Now I have to get it!

Yvonne said...

Oooh sounds good :)

FairyWhispers said...

that was a cute interview!

Munnaza said...

This book sounds incredibly awesome, and I loved the interview. "Teenagers with powers on mission" sums up the book pretty well, and I am dying to read it now.I definitely get inspired to write when I'm outside too and I'd love to fly as well! Fantastic post!

AgnesPink said...

When I saw the cover I thought it was a realistic contemporary! It's so doesn't look like a Fantasy book!
I liked your review but I am not sure if this book is for me!

Jaime Lester said...

This cover completely threw me for a loop once I read the synopsis. I honestly thought this was going to be a contemp, and that is so not the case. But it sounds really good, and if it was a favorite of yours, then I think I might check it out. Thanks for the review, as usual!

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