On Monday 22nd February my debut horror novel DEEP LEVEL packed a suitcase, said goodbye and headed out on tour, leaving his tearful daddy (ie me!) behind.
It was a day of mixed emotions. On the one hand, I was keen to see what kind of critical reaction my baby boy would get from book bloggers and reviewers. But on the other, I was terrified to see what kind of critical reaction my baby boy would get from book bloggers and reviewers.
As it turns out, I needn’t have worried because the reviews were all great. Every. Single. One of them.
Now, it goes without saying that I already thought my book was good. Of course I did. I never would have sent it out to publishers if I didn’t think it was. But when you find out that OTHER people think it’s good – overwhelmingly so – now THAT’s a great feeling. In fact, it’s the best.
In case you don’t know, DEEP LEVEL is the story of four friends who set out to explore a system of secret Victorian underground train tunnels. However, they soon discover that some things are secret for a reason. It is, as previously stated, a horror novel, and what I found most heartening about the reviews was that many of them started with something along the lines of: “Now, I’m no horror fan, but…” and then went on to heap praise on it.
I loved the fact that my horror novel was appealing to non-horror fans. When I read those comments I knew I had done something right. Here’s a few choice quotes…
“With characters who share humorous banter, a creepy and unsettling locale, and a fascinating plot that will keep you on your toes, Deep Level is a book fans of the horror genre should definitely pick up.” – jazzybookreviews.com
“Wow…just, wow, this is an extremely well written debut, it’s intense, atmospheric, spine chilling and makes your skin crawl in places but is also laced with moments of humour.” – nickislifeofcrime.blogspot.com
“Truly sinister and unnerving, this is a great book for those who like their horror malevolent and greedy.” – ramblingmads.com
“The suspense in this novel is amazing. It was completely unsettling and downright creepy. I think what makes horror novels so great is when they get under your skin. That’s what Deep Level does.” – jessicabelmont.wordpress.com
“I was hooked from the end of Chapter 1 and the tension grows so intense but is sprinkled delicately with humour in just the right places.” itgirlworld.co.uk
There were loads more, but I don’t want to bombard you with too much awesomeness.
The tour was arranged by Rachel at rachelsrandomresources.com and she got me a total of 18 reviews and 3 Q&As over 7 days. I was blown away by that. I would definitely recommend her if you have a book to publicise.
Over the course of that week, DEEP LEVEL was read about by thousands of people who may not otherwise have heard of it, and for that I am very grateful. But what was just as valuable was the validation I felt as the reviews came pouring in day after day. I actually wrote a good book. I know that because everyone else thinks so.