Blog Book Tour | “Silver Hollow” (Borderlands Saga, Book One) by Jennifer Silverwood This is a prime example of how you can nearly have dreamt a world into formation and then, by a lovely unexpected surprise get to transition directly into the world you’ve talked about for a year!

Posted Wednesday, 6 February, 2019 by jorielov , , , 3 Comments

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

Acquired Book By: I’ve only been hosting for Xpresso Book Tours for a short period of time – mostly as a book spotlighter and/or author interviewer as most of the stories Xpresso Books takes on a blog tour are either Digital First releases or the review copies are strictly available in ebooks without print or audiobook availability. This doesn’t bother me as I already submitted one purchase request to my library (ie. “Jaclyn and the Beanstalk”) which was accepted and added to the library’s catalogue whilst other stories are either being sourced through my local library or being put on a gathering list of #mustreads once I’m able to purchase copies of those stories myself.

For this particular blog tour, I was encouraged to join the review tour by the author herself, as we’ve forged a friendship whilst I’ve been hosting her blog tours (ie. for Prism Book Tours) which I’ll disclose in a moment before my review. I was overjoyed I could host my first Xpresso Book Tours for a review stop as I keep hoping one of the forthcoming blog tours I find I love to either spotlight or host a guest feature will be available in audiobook which I can source through my subscription to Scribd. Til then, quite happily – this blog tour holds special meaning to me as I feel as if I’ve been caught up inside the journey of “Silver Hollow”‘s new release campaign and can finally read the story to see for myself what is inside!

I received a complimentary copy of “Silver Hollow” by the author Jennifer Silverwood in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Why I wanted to read “Silver Hollow”:

When I first discovered Silver Hollow, it was the genre-bending styling of the author which implored me the most to read the story. At the time, Silver Hollow was being re-released and the only version currently available back then in print was the older version. Sadly, despite my efforts to secure that copy by inter-library loan had failed. It had remained a story I dearly wanted to read and through this particular blog tour the novel has alighted in my hands – to be experienced and to be read.

This bridge between the fantastical and the mythological is what made me keenly curious about Silverwood’s writing style. I wanted to see how she used the bridge itself, as generally speaking I do have a penchant for Urban Fantasy nowadays but each writer I read within that branch of literature has their own unique spin on how to make ‘modern’ settings warmly conducive to Fantasy realms. Finding myself dearly enchanted by how she brokered a story out of the roots of Greek Mythos is only the tip of the iceberg I feel I shall be finding within her collective works!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

However, a short glimpse into a convo we exchanged during #WyrdAndWonder 2018 shows more pointedly what was encouraging me into “Silver Hollow”:

Silver Hollow was originally released in 2012 and was meant to be turnt into a series. The original book is still available in public libraries whilst the newest release has been expanded both in length and as the first of a series installment. How did you initially choose to re-visit this story and to expound upon your idea you had to develop it into a fuller series past where it was originally published? What are the key differences between the 2012 novel readers might be familiar with already or might seek out ahead of the newest one being released through their libraries?

Silverwood responds: Despite its flaws, Silver Hollow has always been one of my favorite books and worlds to explore. I always knew I wanted to return. However, when I decided to finally began the sequel, I realized my writing voice had changed. And the more I read of the original, the more I wished to do things with the narrative I didn’t have the writing chops to pull off before. I began revisions by updating and smoothing out dialogue between characters. I also took out many confusing plot bunnies which never go anywhere (while leaving a few for future books ). One night I brainstormed what the revised Silver Hollow could look like and quickly outlined two more books. I had so many fresh ideas I wanted to explore and that was the deciding point. No matter how intense the expanding and revision process has been, I haven’t looked back.

As for noticeable changes, I actually have a long list of minute and major tweaks. A few major ones are changing “Eddie” to “Freddie” to better fit his true, secret name. I also brought back both twins at the end of this new novel, because I have big plans for them and their perspectives in the future. A few other changes are the shift from Xcalibure to Caerleon, to better fit known Arthurian myths. I also brought a heavier emphasis on Amie’s Pendraig heritage and gave many nods to Arthur’s Welsh origins. While many things have changed, the core bones and heart of this novel have not. I hope everyone enjoys the increased action and romance elements as well. It was so much fun to write.

This is partially what interested me in your story – how it arches back into Arthurian myth and lore – whilst finding it’s own roots within a fantastical world being built out of what you envisioned for your characters! I can definitely understand the growth you experienced as a writer re-visiting her original novel – as a fellow writer who went through Nanowrimo in 2008, the journey I took within the challenge was a journey back to ‘self’ wherein I re-discovered or rather, I re-claimed my own writerly soul! Sometimes, the best thing we can do as a writer is to take a firm step back and then, re-emerge into our fictional worlds years later and finding both the story and our imaginations renewed!

There are a few different genre designations attached to Silver Hollow – from ‘Magical Realism’ (a personal favourite) to Urban Fantasy (another lovely genre to explore) to Fantasy Romance – for readers like myself and others who move in and out of these genres, what can we expect to find which hones in on these three particular ones the most? In essence, how did you bring elements of Magical Realism into an Urban Fantasy experience with overtures of Fantasy Rom?

Silverwood responds: That’s a very good question! I didn’t originally set out to encompass all those things, but as this new edition grew, so did the themes. For example, the book begins very snugly in the Magical Realism genre. Amie is a normal woman with a normal life, living quietly in a sleepy town in East Texas. The magic appears in little hints until the defining moment that prompts her to action. This is also the point we begin to shift into Urban Fantasy, as Amie is fleeing the people out to kill her. The oddities around her increase as she is rescued by Emrys and led into Silver Hollow. The romance is much stronger in this edition, which I felt appropriate due to Amie’s age and her forgotten past. Perhaps the most fun aspect of Amie’s journey is how she begins in perfectly ordinary circumstances and ends in a fantasy stranger than fiction.

I truly did feel you were genre-bending this tale – of giving it true flight to become it’s own incantation on thematics, purpose and the dimensional shifts of how it would purport itself through it’s own thread of narrative guided by the characters who are on a quest of their own!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

And, of course, I was happy to hear about the sequels – the first of which is *forthcoming!* lateron in Autumn 2019!

As we start to watch you develop the Borderlands Saga – how many novels can we expect to see develop the series and are you planning on inserting novellas or shorts which work concurrently with the novels? Whose story is next in sequence and what can you share about the second release? As there is a hinting about a companion story involving the Blackbriar twins?

Silverwood responds: Like I mentioned before, I already have two sequels outlined and planned, but the scope of these characters and potential to explore other gates, even the other side of the veil are limitless. I would love to be writing this series ten years from now. I would love to include several short stories to tie into the main series. While I originally planned a companion novel about the Blackbriar twins, I’ve planned to give them a much bigger part to play in the sequel. It will be titled Blackbriar Cove and explore the Unseelie side of the story, featuring the twins’ perspectives alongside Amie as they’re drawn into the next stage of the Seelie vs. Unseelie conflict. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited to write the twins’, especially Faye. She’s such a fun, direct character.

If I hadn’t read an anthology about the Seelie Court a few years back, I might not have realised exactly what you were referencing here – as previous to my reading of the anthology, I hadn’t known there was such a dichotomy of differences within fey culture, tradition, personality and the worlds in which they lived! They can be readily seen as ‘good’ or ‘evil’ but both classifications do not do them true justice in revealling their true natures either! Hence the differences in which Court they belong!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

During December, I happily shared keen insight into Silver Hollow from a linguistics and language viewpoint, which proved how much Silverwood and I have in common in regards to the stories we’re attracted to read and to write. This journey I’ve taken to understand “Silver Hollow” from the outside before becoming a reader of the story has been a beautiful one – when the #bookmail arrived with my copy of Silver Hollow, I was overjoyed and touched truly that the day had finally arrived to where I could soak my imagination inside this novel I had all but dreamt alive of the past year!

This is why I love seeking out stories of Fantasy – they take us on this otherworld journey – we get to purport ourselves out of our ordinary lives and enter into the fantastical – where anything and everything can happen. It is through reading Fantasy I find myself lit alive with a keener sense of wonderment and a lovely breath of curiosity for the unexpected. Fantasy has a way of deepening our understanding of modern reality as much as it eludes to the overtures of literature itself – where its the stories whose characters teach us the most about how to live.

The only thing I wished I could have done was taken a pause to allow the first part to soak through me a bit more and then return after a proper rest. Because of my recent blight with a supernova (ie. four day beastly migraine) as disclosed when I reviewed the latest Rocky Mountain Cowboys novel – I wasn’t able to linger within the story. I didn’t get to begin reading Silver Hollow until night fell on Tuesday and morning started to ink its way towards dawn on Wednesday morning. The joy for me though was having a head clear enough to read and a novel imaginatively intriguing which re-drew me out of the fog I felt I had lived in during the migraine! Both of these novels were well-timed from that point-of-perspective because they gave me an anchour back into STORIES.

I honestly didn’t know what to expect once I finally picked up Silver Hollow – as the reality of it was this was a story I had discussed the components and elements of to such a degree of familiarity, I simply wanted to pull back the curtain a bit – settle into the context of the novel and attempt to forget what I had learnt previously and re-enter this world with a hopeful expectation of the wondrous. Reading is a lovely journey and for me, I couldn’t wait to cross into the Borderlands!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

On my connection to Jennifer Silverwood:

When our paths first crossed, Ms Silverwood and I shared a mutual interest and connection; however, our friendship did not form for awhile afterwards. It was truly after the interview went live and after I noticed I was reading her blog as much as she was reading mine – where I realised we shared a lot of commonalities in our reading lives as well as our writely lives! We decided to stay in touch and it is an honour to find someone who understands the bridge between reader, blogger and writer.

I am disclosing this, to assure you that I can formulate an honest opinion, even though I have interacted with Ms Silverwood through our respective love & passion of reading inside the twitterverse whilst I hosted her Silver Hollow blog tour and privately as well. I treat each book as a ‘new experience’, whether I personally know the author OR whether I am reading a book by them for the first time or continuing to read their releases as they are available. This also applies to hosting a guest feature by the author I share a connection.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Blog Book Tour | “Silver Hollow” (Borderlands Saga, Book One) by Jennifer Silverwood This is a prime example of how you can nearly have dreamt a world into formation and then, by a lovely unexpected surprise get to transition directly into the world you’ve talked about for a year!Silver Hollow
Subtitle: Madness begets madness...
by Jennifer Silverwood
Source: Direct from Author

“I shouldn’t have to tell you this isn’t a fairy story…”

After her parents’ car crash ten years before, Amie Wentworth trusts books more than people. She may be a writer, but she believes in reality over fiction. She ignores the unexplained mysteries surrounding her, never mind the dreams of a past life, or the fact she can fry technology with a touch. Not even a timely invitation from her long-lost uncle in England gives Amie incentive for anything other than ire.

Until she is stabbed in an alley and brought back to life by a handsome stranger. Soon Amie is dragged into the very sort of tale she is used to selling. To make matters worse, the man who saved her life keeps turning up and her would-be-murderer is still at large.

After crossing the Atlantic to her father’s homeland, she discovers a world beyond imagining. Silver Hollow is a place of ancient traditions and supernatural dangers, where everything is the opposite of what it seems and few escape sane. Faced with an impossible choice, Amie is forced to confront a deadly family legacy while remembering a life she soon wishes to forget.

**Previously published in 2012.
This NEW EDITION has been FULLY REVISED AND EXPANDED.
The original novel is now no longer available.**

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781513636887

Also by this author: Author Interview: Jennifer Silverwood (Silver Hollow), Stay, Book Spotlight: Borderlands Saga

Genres: Dark Fantasy, Epistolary | Letters & Correspondences, Fantasy Fiction, Mythological Fantasy, Urban Fantasy


Published by Silverwood Sketches

on 22nd May, 2018

Format: Hardcover Edition

Pages: 436

Published By: Silverwood Sketches

Formats Available: Hardback, Trade Paperback and Ebook

Converse via: #SilverHollow &/or #BorderlandsSaga
+ #DarkFantasy, #FairyTale and #UrbanFantasy

About Jennifer Silverwood

Jennifer Silverwood

Jennifer Silverwood was raised deep in the heart of Texas and has been spinning yarns a mile high since childhood. In her spare time she reads and writes and tries to sustain her wanderlust, whether it’s the Carpathian Mountains in Transylvania, the highlands of Ecuador or a road trip to the next town. Always on the lookout for her next adventure, in print or reality, she dreams of one day proving to the masses that everything really is better in Texas. She is the author of two series—Heaven's Edge and Wylder Tales—and the stand-alone titles Stay and Silver Hollow.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

my review of silver hollow:

Colours have a purpose within Silver Hollow – at least they did when we first met Amie who was preparing herself to attend her parents funeral. She had two steadfast mates besides her – twin sisters, Faye and Jo, who were the soul sisters you’d hope to have found if you were Amie facing this kind of future. She was cast adrift – nothing felt right and the only solace she could ink out of the horror of the present was the meditative calming reprieve of being connected to the soil and earth within the garden she had toiled with her father. The garden was her grounding bar – it was where she could return ‘back to centre’ and not feel as if life was spiraling out of control. She ached to feel that kind of buoyancy outside the garden – where the twins couldn’t quite understand what pulled her back to the earth, when she needed to spend time inside her well of grief. They could only see a portion of her anguish – the needs of her emotional half which percolated to the surface but not the undergrowth of roots which went far deeper than mere sorrow could yield.

It is curious here – in the midst of an ordinary day, where a funeral buries the dead and the grievers must walk out of the cemetery with the bravery they can’t quite feel but hope they one day can embrace – where a letter of correspondence from an unknown relative can alleviate part of the aching quell of disbelief. From the moment Amie picked up the parchment and read the words struck in ink by a relation she never heard of but felt she needed to meet – as what is left behind is a chasm of ghosted memories and the echoes of a painful loss. Her heart was wrenched with regret – of seeking a reason why she hadn’t been joined in the grave with her parents outside of the random choice of not attending an event. How can a random act of defiance radically alter the path of your life?

It was not lost on me the notation about Jane Eyre and the significance of the novel and the story in relation to Amie and her British Uncle. Mostly as it is quite curious – I was meant to finish listening to Jane Eyre a few weekends ago whilst sharing my ruminative thoughts on its behalf – as I had conversed about an inspired tale sprung out of its tale. Yet, here was a small clue towards how Amie anchoured herself to certain stories with darker undertones and the kind of tales which seek to analyse the sociological framework of the human condition.

I had to smirk. Truly. The girl had to live an analogue existence due to having a yet-undisclosed condition which turnt all electrical upgrades into an untouchable nightmare (or so I presumed, as I felt she had an electromagnetic condition) and yet, for me, it was like reading a chapter of my own life wherein I purposefully seek out those alternatives! I might be a book blogger but I ache for returning to days of languid blissitude writing out letters to post into the mail and for getting my late 1930s or early 1940s Royal serviced for regular use. There is something to be said for non-technological advances as they re-direct us back to our humanity by pulling back the layers of technology which overstep into our everyday lives. Too much tech isn’t blissitude in other words.

I wonder, if anyone else speculated about the tall stranger attending Amie’s parents’ funeral might have actually been someone who was secretly watching over her until they could present themselves to her in a timeline which was safe for them both to be aware of each others’ presence? Similarly, I was quite sure the same bloke who reappeared in her life a decade later in the rain was one of the same persons and if a two pence of luck had its right for me, I felt I knew his identity.

If I had experienced an electrical malfunction which had caused a disruption like the one Faye and Jo (and their assorted guests) had experienced, I think I might have felt there was something especially unusual about Amie who didn’t seem to experience the incident at all. She had been locked in her own experience of unknowns – where the truer sense of her origins or the origins more readily of her family were lurking out of the shadows and trying to claim her; or at least this is what it felt like to me. You had to be mindful of those moments where your sixth sense was triggering a reaction deep within you – moments where your intuition feels heightened against what is visually seen and understood. Amie hadn’t yet crossed the threshold from accepting the moments as they arose to realising those moments could be small keys and clues towards an unknown past. At the very least, I felt she should have been a bit more clued into how those occurrences were acting as warning signals? However, with everything she was shouldering – part of me wondered if connecting the dots would take more out of her than she might be willing to give? A day of reckoning was going to arrive to meet her – whether she was ready or not.

Knowing something is about to happen and seeing it happen are entirely two different things – it was a rather shocking affront to think something so dearly brutal and violent could befell Amie but at the same time, Silverwood pulled back the lens on the attack itself as there was something more at hand happening in that scene. It wasn’t meant to focus on the brutality of the incident itself – rather it was meant to showcase something about Amie herself and of a lineage she was tap dancing round from diving headfirst into learning more about as she continued to ignore the letters which offered her a way towards the truth. Yet, even so – part of you hugs in a breath, dares to read the passages and hopes you and Amie are both strong indeed to survive not just this shock but the rest of what is yet to become revealled.

Ooh! I knew of that scene Amie talks about on the landing as her flight draws to a close – even though I never had the proper chance to watch that particular serial, I somehow garnished information about it. Methinks I must have had friends at the time who regularly watched it and we must’ve exchanged notes about the series we were each watching separately. The point is though – even without seeing that series, I still felt how the scene was treated was bang-on brilliant as it ‘fit’ within the context of the story-line and in the genre. I felt from the beginning this had the layers you’d expect to find in an Urban Fantasy novel and I was thrilled for it! As Urban Fantasy has become my personal niche of love in #SpecLit!

Bravery, at times sneaks inside you at a heightened moment of realising your life is not just turnt upside down but your quite literally living through a bonefide thriller where you’re the person who is both the hunted and the clueless heroine. Amie takes it on faith (and faith alone) that her Uncle is a trustworthy bloke (and I’m of the mind he is what he claims to be) but when she starts to take the actions he is suggesting, her life is anything but ordinary anymore. In fact, ever since she left the happy confines of her life back home, she’s had to brave an airplane and a train; the latter of the two being the more terrifying in a James Bond kind of fashion if you’re familiar with Goldeneye (though the circumstances differ, it still involves two persons in a rough spot on a train).

Ooh if only we knew his name at this point! He grieves you really for being so elusively centred on his duties in protecting Amie that we’ve yet to discover her guardian’s name! He’s the one I wanted to sketch the most as he has this aura about him and his whole appearance reminds me of a cat whose not as concerned with his own fur as he is with protecting his pride.

There was a moment where I realised what I was thinking about Silver Hollow, even the words I was using to describe my experience of being inside this world slowly was starting to become a precursor to what was actually inked onto the page(s). Reminded me of when Bastian had that moment where he questioned is the Neverending Story already written or am I helping to write it? It is a clever thought – the circle between the story, the novelist and the reader. I also realised it meant that Silverwood and I share a lot of writerly incantations of the craft and we mirror each other in regards to how we might set a foundation for a story of this nature. She’s wicked good at developing a build-up round her lead character, giving you pause and purpose for drawing close to Amie and then, reshaping your view of her world. You see it as Amie saw it and then, there is that eclipse where the world shifts and you get to see it as it really is – that’s the rub really, as once the curtain comes down, is anyone really prepared to see what they see?

Ah, he speaks and his name is Emyrs.

You’re clapping and rallying behind Amie – she has this lovely retort for Emyrs in Chapter Five which is simply golden! It also was a new revelation of Amie’s self-reckoning – of uncovering portions of herself she never knew she had within her and how those other senses were now strikingly catalytic at forbearing the worst of her fears. Emyrs for his part, was slightly suspicious of Amie and how she was able to be different than he was himself. He saw himself as a guardian and protector – even though between you, me and the lamp-post, he’s smitten like crazy after her as well. They might be opposites in most regards but there is a charge between them that is all but brewing into a chemical reaction which could burst into an explosion if they allow it.

I wasn’t sure what to expect once Amie reached Wenderdowne – as you knew it was going to be quite awe-inspiring but what you weren’t expecting was the carriage! I loved finding her Uncle’s proposed sense of travelling was a throwback to yesteryear – a good one too, for someone with electromagnetic issues! The estate itself though – a firm reminder of why I have a propensity for reading Historical Fiction and Historical Romance – the joy of finding the legacy of time in the building of such an estate is partially why I love historically set stories. As you walked alongside Amie as her Uncle took her into the interior portions of his home, you couldn’t help but feel giddy for what was shrouded in shadows – where his firelight couldn’t touch and where your eyes couldn’t quite see everything which made this a home full of history.

Amie’s Uncle is not just full of the kind of remorse and regret you’d expect him to be shielding but he had a pause of thought lingering over him. Almost as if he was uncertain if his own motives to have Amie brought to him might have been in error? The house he lived inside was lacking its Light and its glow of life. A small glimpse of how Amie could change the stark pallor of its darkened glimmer was when she began to laugh when her Uncle didn’t quite catch a remark she made which referenced pop culture from the world she had recently vacated. That too, in of itself was a curious footnote – the entire time she had spent with Emyrs, she had managed without the protocols of protection she was used to with the twins, Joy and Faye. They had meant so much to her in the past and now, it was almost as if she had to live separate from them without understanding why.

Secondary characters like Elisedd are a delightful addition to any cast – she has such a sweet deposition and dearly wants to impress her charge (ie. Amie). Similarly, Emyrs is a good champion for Amie to have in her corner. He understands so much more than she can conceptionalise at this junction and despite the odds separating them, there is something innately true about how they are magnetically connecting to each other. It is almost as if they both fulfill something the other is missing or they have tapped into a hidden conduit of emotional synergy.

As we start to see the legacy emerge through Uncle Henry’s tutelage, Amie starts to recoil from her lessons. Everything is altering itself too quickly for her ability to accept this changing reality. She is struggling to understand why the earth, the very soil itself still calls to her and wants her to manipulate its yield. When her Uncle started to explain a bit about what a ‘Wenderdowne’ does and what their gift is in this world, Amie isn’t prepared to listen. The sad bit, you can see the solemn acceptance of this on her Uncle’s face. His features betray his emotions – he is a sensitive Uncle and one whom you can tell is betwixt between the past, the present and the (hope) of the future.

When the veiled secret is finally revealled, I must say, I was intrigued! This is one aspect of the Seelie and Unseelie Court I hadn’t encountered previously! The reason it is such a compelling prospect is because of how Silverwood envisioned it. She’s given it a weight of thought and of a theory that makes sense – especially considering the layers of this world! You have the Borderlands themselves, the reality in which Amie was raised and then, you have this ‘other side’ that is a bit less good-hearted and a bit more attached to its evilness.

I was also caught inside the teachings Amie was undertaking through her mentors, the carriage driver (Cutterworthy), the crush she’d rather not understand (Emyrs) and of course, her dear Uncle Henry. For each of her lessons were an attempt to draw her closer to the Seelie roots she was left in the dark over by her own father, the more you could see Amie was struggling to quell that small voice inside her head which claimed this was all some kind of madness rather than reality. And, on that note, you had to agree with her – how would you suddenly embrace a reality you never knew, never fathomed existed and were brought up to rights to accept rather immediately as your birthright? It is a very hard and difficult pill to swallow if your like Amie and find all of this rather too extraordinary to be true.

And, yet the ways in which Silverwood wrote this tale everything feels rather realistic because of how she’s kept us rooted and anchoured into Amie’s own journey. She’s given us an emotional connection to Amie straight out of the gate, something that is quintessential to feeling as if we’ve discovered a purpose to take the journey with the character. This journey however is unlike others I’ve taken as I felt it was a proper genre-bender – equally moving through an Urban Fantasy narrative with a Speculative Dark Fantasy wherein you are never quite certain if what you are relying on as being true to what you knew before or if it is a newer truth just revealled? Meaning, where does the truth of fairy tales and legendary lore segue into a newer reality of its own? How do we know when we’ve taken that leap into the other realms before we recognise how otherworldly our visitations have become? I felt this was similar to what Amie was facing herself – here she was with a bequest and an inheritance she hadn’t sequestered out for herself but was wholly expected to accept without complaint?

As we draw deeper into this world, you start to see how it is not as stablised as you might have considered – though there was one fail safe clue towards that end – it was in how Uncle Henry was describing his home – how fractured it looked to Amie, how weathered and how old the house appeared to her eyes whenever there was enough light to chase down its shadows? I was curiously wondering if that had been a metaphor about their familial gift of being gatekeepers? Of how if there is an unsettling somewhere off, would that affect their living space because a portion of who they are is intrinsically tied to their gates?

The Borderlands is a compelling saga – you can’t put down this book once you’ve begun it – proving how much time and heart Silverwood put into reviving the original edition and ensuring each of us who enters into Silver Hollow has a solid footing of accepting this world and of becoming a new champion of Amie and the creatures of live just past the veil. I, for one, can’t wait to see what comes next as I’m speculating the sequel is going to be as riveting as this first installment – the series which is developing in front of me is surely going to become a fast favourite because it leaves you hopeful for more.

The story within the story:

When I stumbled across the passages of Amie’s manuscript, I felt the same joy I had when I first saw Jewel of the Nile when Joan Wilder is sharing a portion of her writing life, hunched over a typewriter and crying over the ending of her novel. Not that Amie was crying over the sections she was writing – instead, she was frustrated as most of us writers are at one junction or another when we can’t get the words to match our thoughts or we can’t settle life down to a dialled volume of acceptable noise to where we can quell that section of our living hours long enough to engage with her writerly muses.

And, not just this story is within the story at hand – we catch glimpses of Amie’s dreamscapes and of the waking dreams she finds fuelling into her conscience whether she’s intending them to be present or not. It is an interesting segue of understanding Amie – not just for what motivates her but what implores her forward, what she is afeared of finding true and of course, how sometimes her dreams are little catches of interest of what could be, might never be and of what might be again; such as they are for everyone.

Linguistically elevated:

Smirks. Seriously, this novel is one for wordsmiths and lovers of Old English – if you love discovering new words, new turns of phrase and have a bit of a happy delight in digging into the Appendixes to spy out the Glossary as you reach the new words in the text itself, you’ll find yourself dancing in the light of random joy! I know I did. There is singularly one reason I love reading – the words, the language and the beauty of how joining words differently with the use of older expressions in English can denote a wondrously new experience as a reader. Honestly – wordsmiths are my favourite novelists – they simply know how to capture your eye and never let you stop musing over their choices.

on the fantastical writing styling of jennifer silverwood:

I was nearing the end of the Prologue when I realised I hadn’t jotted down a note about what I had been reading – as I blog about the stories I am reading in the moments I am reading them. This is a tradition of all the reviews which have populated on Jorie Loves A Story over the past five and a half years (six years come the end of March, 2019). There was a tight pulling of curiosity – of needing to read another paragraph, of feeling tucked closer to Amie and of developing a keen sense of curiosity for the otherness which was about to jump into focus; I was sure of it, as it was percolating at the fringes round the funeral for her parents. It was then I realised, I think I might have found my footing into the fantastical styling of Ms Silverwood – where I could gain entry into the mythos of her world and settle in for the long haul of the Borderlands Saga!

What I appreciated most though is how this story was written – from the choices in direction and characterisation to the elements of the ‘otherworld’ seeping through the opening chapters where Amie is clueless about her ancestral legacy. I even appreciated what wasn’t inclusive in the context of the story-line which was graphic depictions and the words which are so heavily sprinkled through contemporary fiction these days which isn’t limited to genre. I definitely considered this to be a ‘clean read’ even though there are a few words or phrases that others might feel this isn’t that kind of novel, I would say those are such random occurrences and if you look at them on the face value in which they are shared, they do not even relate to the other works I’ve read where vulgarity and strong language is used blatantly with obsession. No, this novel is definitely a favourite because I barely even noticed a strong word was ever used.

I love how she’s etching in pop cultural references and making the texture of her Urban Fantasy dearly Contemporary – similar in vein to how I love the Urban Fantasy realism of Ms Chris (E. Chris Garrison) who writes her own fantastical fairy tale series. Silverwood has instincts within the sequencing of her novel I appreciated – such as how she pulls back the lens of the immediate foreground action and offers a more introspective insight to the same scene as it is happening without giving you a reason to realise you were pulled out in order to better understand what is really going on vs what is speculated. The pacing I felt was intimate enough to hug us close to Amie but equally dynamic enough to give us a slight thrill of an adventure we were bound to want to escape inside once we caught a glimpse of how her world was evolving into view.

I cannot be the only reader who noted the slight nod to Captain Jack Sparrow, right? There were lots of moments where I had a light of joy noting what was inclusive in the text – from phrases, to references to film or tv series – the forementioned pop cultural bits bobbing their way into the contextual background of Silver Hollow. It was good folly realising someone else has a wide eclectic sea of knowledge and takes notes about the same things and those things pepper in the reality of what we all can relate too as we’re reading the story.

Silverwood has truly crafted together a tale you can drink in – slowly and ruminatively, as you step into Amie’s footsteps as she starts to pull the pieces together of a life and family she was not privy to understanding til her parents died. And, even then, let’s be frank – it took her longer than most to accept a nod of familial invitation to gleam more about her father’s past and the world he left behind. I loved her instincts for turns of phrase, for how she took time to allow Amie to contrast her thoughts and emotions through colours and wordplay.

Fantastical Elements:

→ Electromagnetic sensitivity (previously experienced through The Last Gatekeeper)

→ Psi Healing practices

→ Near Death Experience with a Urban Fantasy bent

→ Dimensional shifting and transitional transportation

→ Humour in Urban Fantasy (similar to my love of the Tipsy Fairy Tales)

→ Some aspects of the story also happily reminded me of other beloved tales (ex. Moonflower)

→ Magic (of course there is magic)

I was overjoyed realising my inclination to believe Silver Hollow would be a book and a series I could rally behind truly exceeded my expectations!! As a book blogger I’ve developed a keen eye of awareness for Urban Fantasy – so much so, I have read more Urban Fantasy novels than I have most of the other sub-genres I love in Speculative Literature. Whenever I stumble across an author whose writing the kind of stories I love to disappear inside, I stay with them. I can tell already this is a NEW beloved favourite and one I can’t wait to see continued to become developed as the series expands!

Many of these elements I am mentioning and quite a heap I am leaving unknown for your own readerly delight in discovering them – paint towards the world-building and the elements of how to keep a reader suspended in the realities of the world they are reading. Many of these elements I have ever seen explored previously in fiction and/or have seen them in tv series or films brokering themselves somewhere in Speculative realms or the Paranormal as sometimes there is a cross-referencing aspect to these kinds of elements.

The beauty of course, is the subtlety in which they have become fashioned through the Borderlands Saga – as there is a gentleness to the fantastical within this series. You get to step through the veil between the known world and the unseen world as unexpectedly as Amie. It gives you a chance to adjust to the changes but also, it proves the point towards what is seen and unseen is only the very beginning of understanding the unknown.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Let’s talk book editions for a moment:

The beauty of reading this hardback edition of “Silver Hollow” is how it was crafted – the cover jacket is spectacular but what is truly endearing for me is the fact the cloth-bound interior has gold lettering on the spine and as you open the book itself, the papers are light as air – I was half expecting the pages to be heavier in texture but their light, featherlight almost but remind me more of the kind of stationary you use for writing friends overseas.

The typography used for the Chapter Headings & the internal title and author marks for the pages really impressed me as their creative & they have their own personality. I love the motif used for the Chapter Headings as well – plus, there is this lovely small version being used throughout the chapters as little breaks between scenes/sequences. The Chapter titles themselves give you a quick burst of giggles at times – as sometimes they feel like they are voicing the internal thoughts of Amie – giving you a clear guide towards what you should expect next in the narrative!

I don’t often find a hardback edition to be such a hug of joy to open, read & experience – most hardback editions are becoming quite standard – from the layout, to the typography to the internal touch of the papers (unless they fray the edges which is something I love alongside Mum!) – it gets to be a bit disheartening when all of them start to blur a bit together – except for the stories, of course, but the editions, I mean. I used to remember when each book you held in your hands was an original and something about it stood out – this hardback edition brings back that golden era of book making.

I also am loving the italics in this copy – there are moments in my current reading life where I have to gloss over letters & correspondences in certain stories as the italics are slanted too heavily or their inked in fonts which make it harder on the eyes to view – this is especially true for those afflicted with migraines and fight for the right to read again after a bad bout of them (such as I do regularly). I read every inch of this novel – coming off such a beast of a migraine (a supernova four day) I can attest to how gentle it was to read and how happily it felt like an original edition with a personality of its own to share with you as you read the words penned by the novelist.

The End Pages are repleat with a Glossary & a term which I just came to learn #FantasyAvenger(s) – I was going by Fantasy Nerd but I really love the sound of this new term and will be adopting it as it matches well with how I feel about Fantasy stories inasmuch as I felt about using Sci Fi Geek! *waves in gratitude* to Ms Silverwood!

There were only two things I missed – a map of the Borderlands and sketches of the characters – it doesn’t oft happen but I had inklings of how the sketches might have looked as I was reading – something I used to do quite a lot. I’d love to learn how to sketch and illustrate in pencil and pen/ink – as those are two mediums of interest I’ve not had the chance to explore. My subject of choice would be Ethereal worlds & Fantasy art – I did a self-study of the artists known during a select group of years in the early 2000s and was fascinated by what I saw. They truly elevated your imagination and spun stories out of their palettes of colours. If I could illustrate how I see characters I read and create originals outside of those – it would be a lovely expedition back into traditional art.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

I should mention whilst I was reading “Silver Hollow” I was listening to the playlist “Fairy Music” created by Derek Fiechter via #Spotify – I wanted something ethereal and otherworldly in my ears whilst I dug into the heart of the Borderlands and I must say, I was happily museful both with the story & the music floating through my headphones! I love choosing music to accompany my readings which not only speak to the heart of the story itself but to the genre of interest therein.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

This blog tour is courtesy of:

Silver Hollow blog tour via Xpresso Book ToursBe sure to visit the rest of the tour for more guest author features & a lovely array of insightful observations by the bloggers who’ve reviewed the story & shared their key takeaways on behalf of “Silver Hollow”.

Find others hosting via @XpressoTours!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

I am enjoying being a hostess for:

Xpresso Book Tours badge provided by Xpresso Book Tours.Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Reading this novel counted towards a few of my reading challenges for 2019:

Pop Sugar Challenge : A Book I Meant to Read in 2018

OR A Book You’d Love to See Turnt into a Motion Picture*

(*) I might settle for an audiobook with an ensemble cast!

Beat the Backlist banner created by Austine at A Novel Knight and is used with permission.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

{SOURCES: Book cover for “Silver Hollow”, book synopsis, author photograph of Jennifer Silverwood, author biography, blog tour banner and host badge were provided by Xpresso Book Tours and are being used with permission. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets were embedded due to codes provided by Twitter. Blog graphics created by Jorie via Canva: Book Review Banner using Unsplash.com (Creative Commons Zero) Photography by Frank McKenna and the Comment Box Banner.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2019.

I’m a social reader | I tweet as I read

Comments via Twitter:

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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)

read more >> | Visit my Story Vault of Book Reviews | Policies & Review Requests | Contact Jorie

Divider

Posted Wednesday, 6 February, 2019 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Dark Fantasy, Earthen Magic, Epistolary Novel | Non-Fiction, Faeries & the Fey, Fairy Tale Fiction, Fantasy Fiction, Folklore and Mythology, Genre-bender, Good vs. Evil, Grief & Anguish of Guilt, High Fantasy, Indie Author, Near-Death Experience, Texas, Urban Fantasy, Vulgarity in Literature, Xpresso Book Tours




All posts on my blog are open to new comments & commentary! I try to visit your blog in return as I believe in ‘Bloggers Commenting Back’. Comments are moderated. Once your comment is approved for the first time, your comments thereafter will be recognised and automatically approved. All comments are reviewed and continue to be moderated after automated approval. By using the comment form you are consenting with the storage and handling of your personal data by this website. Once you use the comment form, if your comment receives a reply (this only applies to those who leave comments by email), there is a courtesy notification set to send you a reply ticket. It is at your discretion if you want to return to re-respond and/or to continue the conversation established. This is a courtesy for commenters to know when their comments have been replied by either the blog's owner or a visitor to the blog who wanted to add to the conversation. Your email address is hidden and never shared. Read my Privacy Policy.

3 responses to “Blog Book Tour | “Silver Hollow” (Borderlands Saga, Book One) by Jennifer Silverwood This is a prime example of how you can nearly have dreamt a world into formation and then, by a lovely unexpected surprise get to transition directly into the world you’ve talked about for a year!

  1. Jorie, I always love reading your reviews and blog posts, because you truly go above and beyond for each of your authors. I’m so humbled for all you shared and wrote about Silver Hollow. It’s rare when I meet a reader and friend who literally nerds out with me about words and fairy tales. I’m so glad you enjoyed the story! Especially as you’ve been on this re-publishing journey with me this past year.
    You picked up on so many things here that I had perhaps too much fun sneaking into Silver Hollow. I love you caught the nod to Captain Jack. There are several other nods to fandoms peppered everywhere. I like to think of them as popculture easter eggs lol.
    Also, I “knew” how to describe the Seelie/Unseelie abilities, but a thousand thanks for giving the proper names to them. I feel like I’ve been educated reading your thoughts about something I wrote… once again we’re in the Neverending Story.
    Jane Eyre was very much in my thoughts while writing this, as you noted. Earlier tonight while glancing back through my notes, I saw how I’d specifically mentioned the connection and tone I wanted for Silver Hollow.
    For Blackbriar Cove, we’ll focus more on the Unseelie side of things and I’m researching into Southern Gothic and suspense for influences. Thus the genre-bending continues haha.
    Would love to chat more about characters and whatnot, but I’ll go bug you elsewhere before I write too much here lol.
    Truly, thank you so much for your time and thoughts. I’m so happy Silver Hollow helped to draw you back into your love for stories. I don’t think I could have asked for a better and more humbling word :)

    • Hallo, Hallo Giselle,

      Ooh my yes! I can’t believe how attached I am inside this world – it is truly a beautifully spun story and quite befitting the Urban Fantasy genre I have become attached to these past years. I am quite excited and eager to see what comes next — thank you for including me on the tour and ooh, I could have said so, so much more — this story simply inspires you to chatter about it and to encourage others to give it a go for themselves to see if they can feel the enchantment themselves!

Leave a Reply