Book submission results

I submitted book one in a contest; I didn’t win but here is the review:

Entry Title: Beneath the Surface The Elesin Vollan Story
Author: Latonya Holloway (R.S. Kee)
Judge Number: 43
Entry Category: Mainstream/Literary Fiction

Books are evaluated on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 meaning “needs improvement” and 5 meaning “outstanding”. This scale is strictly to provide a point of reference, it is not a cumulative score and does not reflect ranking.

In some cases, you may see special or out of place characters/symbols in your commentary. For example, you may see that a character/symbol replaces an apostrophe, copyright, and other “symbols”. These substitutions occur for various reasons – and are unavoidable. They are often [programming] misinterpretations due to encoding, installed fonts, web based content/sources etc. Since the “content”[data] of the commentary is comprised of data sent from several different computers (programs, fonts etc.,) and from the internet (online entry system), you may at times see an interpretation of what had been an apostrophe, dash, quotation mark etc.

Structure and Organization: 3

Grammar: 5

Production Quality and Cover Design: 5

Plot (if applicable): 4

Character Development (if applicable): 3

Judges Commentary*:

This is a book that deals with sensitive and intense topics—fame, celebrity culture, sexuality, child abuse, and trauma. Anyone who has ever had a secret can relate to Elesin’s shock at the beginning of the story as painful and disturbing secrets from his past are released to the media. By beginning the story with the shock instead of giving the reader a portrait of Elesin as a person, however, the author misses an opportunity to develop sympathy for his protagonist. The reader is told rather than shown his understandable fear and anger over the course of the book, which prevents the reader from truly rooting for him as he tries to put his life back together and move on from the revelations of his painful past. Not that Elesin is unsympathetic rather, by unfolding his story in exposition, the reader is told what to feel about him rather than coming to the conclusion themselves. The pacing of the book is good although slightly rushed- I think the author has more room to expand the story and give his characters time to develop. The book is well-designed and the cover art is eye-catching and compelling, and accurately conveys the tone and feel of the book.


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