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Sunday, 11 July 2010

A Shameless Plug for my Own Book

perf6.000x9.000.inddImage by stuartaken via Flickr

Here are some reviews of Breaking Faith, my self-published novel. I hope they might tempt you into buying the book. But, if you want a flavour of it first, visit my website www.stuartaken.co.uk and use the BookBuzzr widget to read the first 30 pages or go to the ‘Novels’ page and read the first 2 chapters, all for free. You can then buy it through amazon or any of a number of other booksellers.

By S. D. Mace "Shirley Mace" (High Bentham)
After several years of not having the time or making time to read novels I could not believe how determined this book was to make me read it and was surprised how quickly I read it and how much I enjoyed reading it. 
"Breaking Faith" is about a young naive, innocent girl, set in the summer of 1976, it details Faith's journey from one of isolation, deprivation and abuse where she is bullied by Heacham, acting as his skivvy and financial support and also nursemaid to her brain damaged sister, to enlightenment and self-knowledge in which she slowly falls in love with Leighton and overcomes all the obstacles that are put in her way. Writing from alternating perspectives (Faith and Leighton) adds detail, richness, interest and understanding of the characters. A shocking but captivating story that is definitely worth reading.

By  Mr. P. F. Field (UK)
"Breaking Faith" is the story of Faith, ignorant, naive and completely overshadowed by the sadistic bully Heacham. Faith struggles to nurse her brain-damaged younger sister, skivvy for Heacham and be the family's total financial support. 
Awakening comes as she gets a job with Leighton, the local glamour photographer and she falls in love with him, despite the terrifying threats from Leighton's assistant, the disgusting Mervyn.
I read this book in one sitting, unwilling to put it down, immersed in the Yorkshire of the sweltering summer of 1976 and Faith's journey from darkness to self-knowledge. Her sometimes frightening honesty wash all hypocrisy away, for she is a girl who sees things as they are and tells it the way it is. The book is written from the alternating perspective of Faith and Leighton, giving the reader a greater understanding of their interactions with each other and those around them. The characters are drawn with a fine brush, especially Faith's mother and father. The denouement is sudden, violent and completely satisfying.

By Michelle Mccabe (Gateshead, North East England)
I thought this was a really original story with an intriguing hero and an even more intriguing eponymous heroine. I also felt an intense dislike for some of the other characters meaning Stuart Aken's characterisations were really well done and the denouement tied all of the plots up to a surprising conclusion. Switching the first person narrative from one to the other and looking at the same events from both sets of eyes was a wonderful means of seeing the reasoning behind both of their actions. The story compelled me to read and read and read (a habit that, with an eight year old son, I confess, I have lost recently). 
I would recommend it to anyone and look forward to reading Stuart's next novel!
A triumph of good over evil and an enthralling read

Posted April 13, 2009, 1:37 PM EST Barnes and noble, by Retreiver470:
"Breaking Faith" is the story of Faith, ignorant, naive and completely overshadowed by the sadistic bully Heacham. Faith struggles to nurse her brain-damaged younger sister, skivvy for Heacham and be the family's total financial support. Awakening comes as she gets a job with Leighton, the local glamour photographer and she falls in love with him, despite the terrifying threats from Leighton's assistant, the disgusting Mervyn. I read this book in one sitting, unwilling to put it down, immersed in the Yorkshire of the sweltering English summer of 1976 and Faith's journey from darkness to self-knowledge. Her sometimes frightening honesty wash all hypocrisy away, for she is a girl who sees things as they are and tells it the way it is. The book is written from the alternating perspective of Faith and Leighton, giving the reader a greater understanding of their interactions with each other and those around them. The characters are drawn with a fine brush, especially Faith's mother and father. The denouement is sudden, violent and completely satisfying.
A compelling human story

Review by AJ Field
I have read some of Stuart Aken’s earlier work and he always writes with an immediacy that goes straight to the heart. “Breaking Faith” is the story of one girl’s journey from horrific abuse and bullying, through emotional turmoil, to finding love. But, of course, Aken doesn’t make it easy for her. This is no girl meets boy moonlight and roses book. It is, in parts, deeply disturbing, especially the character of Heacham and his treatment of Faith and her brain-damaged sister. Richness comes from the alternating perspectives of the two main characters, Faith and Leighton. Faith is a girl who sees things as they are and tells it like it is. The way Aken writes his characters pulls your emotions from one to the other. And over all of this is another character, the Yorkshire Dales in the searing summer of 1976. It pervades the action of the book, mirroring the lives of the characters in its landscape. The story builds to a wholly satisfying climax that is sudden and violent, but fitting. It is a book I shall read again.

Karen Wolfe
This is a story of triumphant human spirit. Heroine Faith's rite of passage from horrific neglect and abuse to fulfilment and true love is an inspiring one. Stuart Aken's novel, set in the summer of 1976, simmers with heat, lust, decadence and sexuality, all of which Faith transcends to become her own woman. I loved the Yorkshire Dales setting, and I was rooting for Faith all the way to her well-deserved happy ending. Stuart Aken is indeed a writer to watch.

Word of the Day: joy – delight, vivid pleasure, happiness; ‘Returned from the battlefields of Flanders, he was filled with joy as he approached his beloved wife.’

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