Blog Book Tour | “House on the Forgotten Coast” by Ruth Coe Chambers #JorieReads her latest entry in #MagicalRealism and finds a spell-binding #Suspense!

Posted Saturday, 13 January, 2018 by jorielov , , , 2 Comments

Book Review badge created by Jorie in Canva using photography (Creative Commons Zero).

Acquired Book By: I have been hosting for Poetic Book Tours for a few years now, where I am finding myself encouraged to seek out collections of poetry or incredible fiction being published through Small Trade publishers and presses. I have an Indie spirit and mentality as a writer and I appreciate finding authors who are writing creative works through Indie resources as I find Indies have a special spirit about them. It is a joy to work with Poetic Book Tours for their resilience in seeking out voices in Literature which others might overlook and thereby, increasing my own awareness of these beautiful lyrical voices in the craft.

I have a special note of gratitude to the publicist who works for the publisher of this novel because I am wicked excited to be a part of this blog tour! As soon as I read the premise of the story, I felt smitten and intrigued. I received a complimentary copy of “House on the Forgotten Coast” direct from the publicist in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Why I was smitten to read this novel of #MagicalRealism #Suspense:

As soon as I returnt the request to read this novel on the blog tour, there was something quite attractive about the story-line. I remember, fearing only how Suspenseful it might be, if it would push me outside my comfort zones or rather, if it would be more horrific than I could handle – but my first instincts told me this was a Psychological Suspense story which would broker into elements I love reading within Magical Realism, Cosy Horror and the paranormal – of where time spilts into a veiled reality between here and there and back again.

I also remember being wholly excited to spend time in this narrative,… the story spoke to me dear hearts, and I hadn’t fully understood why until I read the story itself. It is everything I had hoped it would be and a bit more,… the author bewitches you with her narrative, by giving you characters you feel attached to at first meeting and with a back-story which stretches from one century into ours… it is a story which pulls into your heart, gives you a pensive repose and doesn’t fully leave you,…

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Blog Book Tour | “House on the Forgotten Coast” by Ruth Coe Chambers #JorieReads her latest entry in #MagicalRealism and finds a spell-binding #Suspense!House on the Forgotten Coast
by Ruth Coe Chambers
Source: Publicist via Poetic Book Tours

Like a monarch surveying her domain, the house has stood for over a hundred years in the fishing village of Apalachicola on Florida’s northwest coast. She has known life. She has known passionate love. She has known brutal death. But she has guarded her secrets well . . .

Then eighteen-year-old Elise Foster and her parents arrive from Atlanta in their silver Jaguar, bringing with them their own secrets and desires. Seeking friendship in their new community, they find instead that the townspeople resent their intrusion. But this intrusion on the house’s privacy also provides a pathway for the past and the present to merge—and for the truth behind an unsolved murder to finally be brought to light. As you strive to solve the mystery, you and the Fosters are forced to address two critical questions: What is real? What is delusion?

Genres: Genre-bender, Gothic Literature, Historical Thriller Suspense, Literary Fiction, Magical Realism, Southern Gothic, Suspense, Thriller, Time Slip and/or Time Shift, Women's Fiction

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781631523007

Published by She Writes Press

on 19th September, 2017

Format: Paperback ARC

Pages: 252

Published By:She Writes Press (@shewritespress)
originated from She Writes (@shewritesdotcom)
an imprint of Spark Points Studio LLC GoSparkPoint (@GoSparkPoint)
& BookSparks(@BookSparks)

Available Formats: Paperback & Ebook

Converse via: #MagicalRealism + #Suspense

About Ruth Coe Chambers

Ruth Coe Chambers

Ruth Coe Chambers takes pride in her Florida panhandle roots and her hometown of Port St. Joe has inspired much of her writing.

She is indebted to the creative writing classes at the University of South Florida where she found her “voice” and began writing literary fiction. Listed in the Who’s Who of American Women. She has recently republished one novel, and published it’s sequel, and has written two award-winning plays. She is currently working on the third novel in her Bay Harbor Trilogy. She has two daughters and lives with her husband and one very spoiled Cairn terrier in Neptune Beach, Florida.
Her two earlier novels include The Chinaberry Album and Heat Lightening.

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My Review of house on the forgotten coast:

I was struck by how terrifying the first chapter was written – how palatable the truism was stitched into such a short passage of thought – of a young bride, barely out of girlhood, trying to hold onto her innocence and make sense of her plight as a new wife suddenly finds herself betwixt and between wanting her new life in exchange for her old. She’s only seventeen, wild with wonder about the world, eyes so bright and trusting yet she has an uncanny sense of intuition about her as well. Something reflected in older phrases happily knitted into her sensible words, expressions of what could be harbingers of danger – nothing which rattles out a secreted truth but the ominous warnings of a soul in-tune with what is nefariously awaiting them. It is here – where we first meet Annelise, the day of her wedding where her former beau Seth lays claim to protect her from her newly accepted bride-groom!

Straight-off before we meet the second young person to take lead in this novel, Ms Chambers declares the intentions of the story – to find a way to merge through a slice in time, two souls caught in the same house in two separate centuries who can communicate with each other! Mind, this is why I was itching to read this but when the author broke the fourth wall so to speak and explained it plain as span this is how it shall go, it felt like we, the readers were also being called to rights; we had a place in how this would unfold, as if not everything could connect within the story without all the players on their marks, ready to take entrance and re-emerge in the vision Ms Chambers set into motion.

As soon as you find yourself attached to the prose of this novel, you can recognise its Southern roots – of how there is a firm etching of Southern Gothic undertones mixing well with a heightened presence of Southern charm only those small townes in the Southeast can provide. Whether it’s the sun burnt sand, the sun washed houses or the climatic heating of flesh which seeks shelter in shade, iced tea and neighbourly friendship – there is something unique about Southern living near to the sea. The sea itself provides an interesting backdrop because of how it is set to its own mind how to live and regulate the hours therein. The ocean waits for no man and man cannot control her tides nor her intentions. The people of Apalachicola are as weathered as the fishing nets and the barnacles underside the boats – they have breathed in centuries of memories, whilst quietly nodding off the hours of their own lives. Theirs is a keen knowledge for the reverence of the past against the rushing pace of today; therein, what they remain silent about could in effect speak volumes towards awakening a door into hidden secrets they may or may not realise they’re keeping alive.

Counter-point to the village by the sea with haunting memories, Elise is a young artistic girl from Atlanta no one understands because she has a creative eye on the world. She talks differently about things, intuits life through a different pair of eyes and most discouraging to her mother – she doesn’t make friends easily. She finds her peer group to be quite the bore, they don’t connect with her creative outlook nor how she perceives her experiences. Her mother has held back so much of her daughter’s living truths to give the girl a proper ‘complex of identity’ wherein she doesn’t know if she has confidence in being ‘herself’ because what if part of the ‘self’ she feels confident has a flaw in design? What if part of her is has an error in DNA coding and she’s the odd duck out in her ancestral line? She doesn’t warm to her mother, rather, she tries to dodge her mother’s harsh words against her as her mother doesn’t understand how to raise a daughter with an artist’s eye on the world. Her mother would rather have a traditional daughter, whose interests were on traditional things like popularity, fashionable trends and cheer-leading (most likely). Still what bothered Elise more is how she was invisible in priority to her parents; her father was a step-father who chose to walk round her opinions by cutting her out of the conversations themselves. Her mother judged her to such a degree, she could hardly find strength to accept herself – in essence, she was walking through life as if she were a waif of an apparition of her own soul.

The people of the towne were more like a village of neighbours who felt they were more like extensions of the same family tree – if they went out to dine somewhere, they were willing to take it as a given their order would be placed in front of them without having to speak a word on its behalf. There are still places like this, even in today’s technologically industrious world – where waitresses and waiters remember regulars, know their likes and dislikes and have a way of causal calm during the rushes which drive everyone else slightly batty. There are places still whose stilled sense of time allow you the grace of living off a clock but you have to seek them out. Some of these places even have built themselves a niche of personality – of finding a way to re-fuell attention on themselves without having to go in the opposite direction of their ideals; the treasured spirits cast amongst the high rises, where you might have to drive longer to find the townes which still own their heritage but accept in newcomers. Truly the easiest way to find them is to ‘go off road’, tuck in a map into your glovebox and just ‘drive’ – you’ll find the townes, their the ones no one is rattling off a top ten list of why to visit; you have to seek them out yourself and find their heart.

If a door is more than a threshold for the living what then bespeaks of the time-line of a soul attached to a dwelling? As Elise finds her bearings in Annelise’s house, she starts to feel things she cannot explain; the kind of things her parents would offer criticism to silence. They were not into anything ‘paranormally’ outside their own experience or anything exponentially outside their own beliefs. Yet, there were fingerling touches of the unknown, of things not of this life – lingering there, just out of sight but right in line of her mind.

Elise was a purveyor of moments – she drank in people’s living hours like historians dig through archives to root out long begotten annals of time once lived. She walked through neighbourhoods to overhear and observe people in their native settings like naturalists who study biology and ecology might go to the Galapagos Islands to see the wildlife. She drank in conversations to better acquaint herself with where she lived but there was something else, something more to her search than mere whispers of thought and knowledge of a place she was living in without touching it with her presence.

As the veil between the past where Annelise and the present where Elise both walked, so too, did the whispers those lost conversations start to rumour presence in Elise’s ears. She could hear the dead but were they dead or were they still living their lives as Elise was walking through hers? A temporal shift in the time-line of both souls – where the foot-falls were not far from one another, yet she had unknowingly tapped through time to hear what was generally unheard?

There was a moment – whilst Elise was out visiting I wondered,… is it also a story of reincarnated souls? Of how two living spirits each uniquely different in their own regard could be the lost souls of the past now reunited in a way which defies the logic of their situation? It would fit with how their conversations tumbled out – almost as if without them guiding the words but the words being guided by something else, from another time almost, as if their lives were only the vessels,… hearts who love deeply do not forget their loves in the afterlife. Thus, it does stand to reason if two hearts were thus separated might try to find their way back to each other – but that would take more than what they could do to bridge the rift in time,… it would take two others who saw what lies in-between this reality and the unseen,…

The further I entreated into the mind’s eye of Ms Chambers, the further I saw how she built this world – of how Elise and Annelise were one of the same and separate all the same. Of how she blended the historical arc into the contemporary, how she pulled us through time – gently at first first as if we were taking our first tentative steps and then, pushing us with a bit more force to accept what we were hoping was true,… somewhere in the middle, we lost ourselves as surely as Elise started to feel herself fracture between truth and the illusion of truth.

The beauty of the novel is how intensive you feel connected to this story, of how your heart is submerged so wholly full into Ms Chambers vision of it, you cannot disconnect, you can pull yourself out of this setting – your compelled to stretch further into this vision and once there, your suspended in where the histories of the characters encourage you to see their truth. Give yourself to this novel, don’t hold back – take the steps you need to transport yourself into a threshold of time where love and the protective arm of grace can set free all hidden secrets. You will ache to return, to re-live this story and re-see it through new eyes which understand more than you did originally.

On the magical realism styling of ms chambers:

Ms Chambers draws your eye into the awareness of the century she’s writing – as this first begins in the late 19th Century, in 1879. She has a critical eye for the History of the era, of where families employed slaves and where those servants who felt akin and close to their employers took extra care of keeping a watchful eye over their charges. You could tell in the old soul spirit of Ruby (her mother’s lady’s maid) how much history is within the novel; a woman who had lived many lifetimes past her dear Annelise and knew of the world with keener eyes than the young girl herself.

Aside from how she developed her characters, her sense of presence for the locale is all-knowing – those who are well-travelled and familiar with the Gulf Coast states will peer into this novel and smile seeing how well she fused the atmosphere with the reality of living in this environment. She takes care to stitch into the background little nuances of the setting, such as the tangible touch of the humidity, where the heat clings to your skin and the whole of you never feels quite the same afterward. Similarly, no one is shy about tropical cyclones (ie. hurricanes) whose destruction is legendary even if newcomers to such places feel it’s ‘one in a million’ of a chance to ever see such a destructive beast whilst their alive. They just don’t understand the patterns of climate or sadly, they do not have a proper fear of what nature can draw to wrath in the blink of an eye which can turn a deadly churning nightmare into a full-throttle freight train of wreckage up and down a coastal region. Perhaps those in the latter half of the 20th Century and the early dawning years of the 21st Century could have given the people of 1987 a few tips on how hurricanes deserve more respect than nonchalant dismissal. Either this, or complacency is not a new problem; except this isn’t a story about hurricanes,…

I was so fully captured by this author’s vision for this novel, I hungered to read more of her collective works – I cannot wait to see out her other stories – because even when she tucked in medical crises and the uncertainties of medical emergencies, she pulls you back into the vortex of the main arm of the narrative – of what the truer message is about and of how everything cannot be explained through medicine, science nor technology. Sometimes, a lot of life is simply a leap of faith,…

I quite literally feel drawn to her prose – I know I must read more of her works, but it’s also the subtle way in which she uses the craft of writing to speak more than the words spilt onto her pages – there is a lived history of her own tugging at the edges of where the ink has lost its trace,…

It is not merely #unputdownable, it is rememberable for how it makes you feel pulled into her imagination – of re-tracing her own steps to make this burst alive with possibility and the soulful aches of lost loves,…

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Reader Interactive Question:

I look forward to reading your thoughts & commentary! Especially if you read the book or were thinking you might be inclined to read it. I appreciate hearing different points of view especially amongst readers who picked up the same story to read.

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About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

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Posted Saturday, 13 January, 2018 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, 19th Century, 21st Century, Art, Blog Tour Host, Compassion & Acceptance of Differences, Cosy Horror, Death, Sorrow, and Loss, Equality In Literature, Family Drama, Family Life, Father-Daughter Relationships, Flashbacks & Recollective Memories, Ghost Story, Ghosts & the Supernatural, Gothic Literature, Gothic Mystery, Gothic Romance, Grief & Anguish of Guilt, Haunting & Ethereal, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Indie Author, Inheritance & Identity, Life Shift, Literary Fiction, Magical Realism, Mediums & Clairvoyants, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Modern Day, Mother-Daughter Relationships, Paranormal Romance, Parapsychological Gifts, Parapsychological Suspense, Poetic Book Tours, Premonition-Precognitive Visions, Psychological Suspense, Realistic Fiction, Reincarnation, Small Towne Fiction, Small Towne USA, Southern Gothic, Supernatural Fiction, Taboo Relationships & Romance, Unrequited Eternal Love, Village Life, Vulgarity in Literature, Walking & Hiking Trails

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2 responses to “Blog Book Tour | “House on the Forgotten Coast” by Ruth Coe Chambers #JorieReads her latest entry in #MagicalRealism and finds a spell-binding #Suspense!

    • Dearest Ms Cox,

      I truly loved being inside this beautiful world Ms Chambers created for us to explore,… it was nearly hard to put it into perspective how all-encompassing this story felt as I was reading it. I am so very thankful I had the chance to participate on her blog tour and help cheer on this story which still gives me goosebumps for having read as it was such a wickedly brilliant novel! How she crafted the in-between bits – from reality to dream to the thin line of the veils (between life and death) and even the Gothic-esque of how it was told… I truly will not soon forget feeling immersed and full of bliss as I was engaged with her characters! This is definitely one of my most beloved favourites to have discovered this year!

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