A Word (or Two) About Reviews

I’ve been writing for a long time and my works have been published for quite a few years, so I believe I might be qualified to say a few things about reviews. I’ve received a fairly significant number of them through various venues and I’ve had my share of 1 Stars and acid remarks apparently meant to tear out my heart, fry it on an open bonfire and then eat it before my eyes. Yep, those reviews are real stinkers and they really make that little knot in your stomach burn.

I’m not what some would consider a good reviewer because I refuse to give a one or two star review to absolutely anything I read, no matter how badly written it might be. Perhaps you think that bad reviews are useful to potential buyers so they won’t make mistakes and buy something awful? But think of it this way, I deal mainly in electronic books and especially Kindle. With a Kindle account a sizable sample of the book is presented for the reader’s pleasure absolutely free. Not only that, they have a freaking return policy long enough for most people to buy a book, read it and then return it and get their money back. With that in mind, why would anyone need to read a bad review to decide whether or not they might enjoy the book? It’s a win-win situation for the reader, is it not?

And further still, most Indies like myself take advantage of the Amazon Prime membership and put their books up for free from time to time. It still amazes me when I get a returned book that was ‘purchase’ for $00.00!! Who would take the time? Then it occurs to me that the same person who would actually return a free book rather than simply delete it and go on with life, is the same person who would read a few pages and set to writing a screeching rant about how horrible the book was so that everyone would know how disappointed they were in their free purchase. This is sort of funny in the first place and I would question the person’s sanity in the second place.

Personally, I don’t believe anyone should push their own beliefs and/or opinions upon others in an offensive/abusive manner, especially in public and especially when it makes them sound like sour grapes. It is a well known and accepted fact that not everyone is going to like everything they read. Granted. Today I read a list of the Ten Worst Beach Reads and I was amazed at the popular names on the list, which included “Shades of Grey”! The list was made up entirely of classics and best sellers.

Some of the books on the list, I had actually tried to read myself and thought they sucked, but I did not write scathing reviews simply because I didn’t care for them. Apparently millions of other people loved them so what does my opinion matter? Not a whit. And yet, some of the books on the list I found extremely well-written and well done, but they were on the list all the same.

The old adage of “Opinions are like a**holes; everybody has one” still holds true. The problem is that some people have bigger ones than others and allow them to write reviews. 😀259308891016384375_SI2i1Z7x

Rebecca’s Questions

NOTE: If you are reading the series and haven’t at least reached Book 25, the Ancient Evil, this information may contain spoilers. On the other hand, if you haven’t yet reached Book 9, the Queen of the Abyss, this information will certainly confuse you and by the time you fnish Book 8 and begin Book 9, you will have forgotten it entirely.

Always keeping us guessing! August 1, 2012
By Rebecca
Again I finished this book in a matter of days! As said by Heidi, I too will be going back to the beggining for a re read of this FANTASTIC series once the last book’s been written. A couple of things I don’t understand though… how is Mark again split usunder and from where did the second body come from? and if Meredith was always a part of Nanna then why is Merry just a simple human… did Nanna manifest as Merideth always knowing she would fall into Mark’s path? Anyway, another well written installment, I can’t wait to see what happens next! Thankyou Mr Carrol for sharing this wonderful and uniqe story with us.

I certainly appreciate reviews like this one and I love to pique the interests of my readers enough to make them ask questions. These questions, I feel could be answered without spoiling anything in the last two up-coming books in the series. So I thought I take a minute and try to answer them.

I’m not sure which body Rebecca is talking about so I’ll try to cover them all as well as I can. Mark’s first body was Mark Andrew Ramsay, brother of Luke Matthew Ramsay. The entity Myrrdyn Ambrosius (Merlin of King Arthur legend) was on the run from Marduk, his ancient enemy, shortly after the incident with the Woman of Sidon during the Middle Ages. (Myrrdyn Ambrosius, you will recall, actually helped the original nine Templars excavating under Solomon’s Temple in finding the Jewish treasures lost, i.e. Ark of the Covenant and other Temple treasures.) Now, Myrrdyn retreated to Scotland after fleeing Jerusalem and happened upon one Morna Lily Ramsay, the wife of Sir Timothy Ramsay in the service of King William of Scotland at the time. They hit it off and the next thing I knew Myrrdyn was gone and remanifested by way of the ancient secrets into Morna’s eldest twin, Mark, in order to elude Marduk once again.
Mark and Luke ran off to the Crusades and eventually fell in with the Templars and then with d’Brouchart after the fall of Jerusalem. When the Templars were disbanded in 1307, a handful of Templars and a lot of treasure was shipped off to Scotland and eventually carried across the sea to Nova Scotia. Much of the treasure was returned to France and then Italy and Scotland when the Order of the Red Cross of Gold began to build up its clandestine army in the 15th and 16th Centuries.
When Mark Andrew tried to go back and reset the clock, unbeknownst even unto himself, his jaunt through time created a separate time-line, hence the formation of King Ramsay, who saved both Luke Ramsay from Jerusalem and later, Simon of Grenoble from the Inquisitor’s dungeon. Then we had two Ramsays.
The Original Mark Andrew was completely repressed by the entity known as Myrrdynn, Uriel, Adar, etc. When he learned of King Ramsay’s existence, he went looking for him and beheaded him, but, once again, he could not release his own soul with the Key of Death, just as if he had committed suicide by cutting off King Ramsay’s head.
The Queen of the Abyss then took King Ramsay’s head away to the Abyss and put it in her treasure house in a cask because she was, as we know, quite fond of Adar and his son Luke Andrew and his brother, Luke Matthew, because they are all quite similar.
When the Ancient Evil caught up with Sophia and Mark Andrew while they were riding through the forest, Uriel/Adar had to evacuate Mark’s body in order to escape annihilation at the hand’s of the Ancient Evil, Samael, who had destroyed Jozsef Daniel and taken his body. When he left Mark’s body, it was as if Mark Andrew Ramsay was just newly born in his brain and that was why Sophia had to raise him again as if he were a baby. However, Mark and Luke are both sons of Uriel, Sons of Light, if you will, Uriel being a messenger and archangel of God.
Uriel/Adar assumed his spiritual form just as John Paul assumed his spiritual form when his earthly body died in the underworld. Uriel/Adar’s physical form was not like Marduk and Nergal’s physical monstrosities, but more human in appearance because he had been one of the archangels for a time and simple kept the form of the angel instead of reverting to a more primitive form like some of the watchers in the Seven Gates of the Abyss. If you will remember, Shammash was a shining, human-like form even though he was one of the Watchers as well.
So, Mark as Uriel/Adar in spiritual form was able to refashion his own body from the materials at hand whenever he had fully regained his memory and ability to use his powers (much like Nergal and Marduk when they assumed human form).
Thus we now have three Mark Andrew-like incarnations, one with his head in a cask. King Ramsay, once released from his prison in the Queen’s treasure house, was able to inhabit Mark Andrew (the Dove’s) body once more when Sophia and Mark ended up in the Abyss at Lily Ramsay’s home in the Seventh Gate. (Lily, I’m sure you have noticed is quite confused.)
When the Ancient Evil was finally defeated, Omar was allowed to take the body that once belonged to Jozsef Daniel, Jozsef Daniel having taken his leave of it and gone off with Anna, his wife when Uriel/Adar released them inside the Ancient Evil’s head. This allowed Omar to resume the likeness of Lemarik’s “beautiful son” who was simply a replica of Luke Matthew, created by Lemarik by alchemical means.
*Deep breath*. *Blow out*.
Now, as to Merry Ramsay. Nanna knew things were counting down to Armageddon and he wanted to be there to help defeat the Ancient Evils from Beyond the Abyss. So, he took up the incarnation of Meredith Sinclair and viola! He/She/It hooked up with Mark/Uriel/Adar when he went to Texas. In the second time-line, Nanna was not incarnated into Meredith and Meredith was simply herself, as she would have been, had Nanna not infiltrated her mind. Merry Ramsay, Luke Matthew’s wife was a simple human woman who became immortal by eating the Golden Apples in Semiramis’s Orchard in the Hesperides’ Garden. Meredith Sinclair, who lives in the First Gate with Nanna is the Meredith Sinclair from the first time-line who was John Paul/Nanna’s mother. She is like Morna Lily Ramsay, Mark Andrew’s mother, who lives in the Seventh Gate. Lily was saved from Purgatory by Mark/Uriel/Adar because he felt guilty for having caused her to go to Purgatory in the first place.
You will also remember, John Paul/Nanna retrieved his wife, Michelle, from Purgatory because he felt guilty because she had committed suicide.

So there! If you have read and are confused, don’t say I didn’t warn you. And if you haven’t read the Assassin Chronicles at all, it’s not too late to start.

Go here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B001J6ORUI for Kindle USA

Go here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B001J6ORUI for Kindle UK