Tuesday, 30 December 2014

PROMO/AUTHOR INTERVIEW & REVIEW - AN UNCOMMON BLUE - COLORBLIND BY R.C. HANCOCK

Title: Uncommon Blue
Series: Colorblind 
Author: R.C. Hancock
Publisher: Cedar Fort Publishing
Release Date: 9th December 2014

BLURB from Goodreads
In Télesphore, the glowing color of a person’s palm determines their place in society, and touching hands with another mixes the colors permanently. When sixteen-year-old Bruno accidentally kills a royal soldier, he goes from favored to fugitive. Now Bruno's only chance at survival is to become someone else. That means a haircut, a change of wardrobe, and most important, getting rid of his once cherished Blue. Now he’s visiting parts of town he never knew existed, and making friends with people he would've crossed the street to avoid only weeks ago. At the last minute, Bruno’s parents arrange a deal to clear his name and get his life back. All Bruno has to do is abandon those in the Red slums that look to him as a leader and let an innocent Green boy die in his place.


PURCHASE LINKS

AUTHOR INTERVIEW

What can we expect from you in the future? 
A few sequels in the Colorblind Series and a stand-alone Sci-fi that's a cross between The Selection and Hunger Games.

What is your favourite book and Why?
Matilda by Roald Dahl has been my favorite since elementary school because I identified so completely with her. Precocious, under-appreciated, and wanting to be special in some spectacular way.

Do you think books transfer to movies well? Which is you favourite/worst  book to movie transfer? 
I love when the filmmakers are able to fix problems with the novel. For example, the screenwriters for Voyage of the Dawn Treader turned an episodic, preachy narrative into a seamless, powerful whole. Hunger Games were also well done. Those first two Harry Potters, though.... I don't think I'll ever forgive Chris Columbus.

What are you currently reading? Are you enjoying it? What format is it?
I'm reading Golden Son, by Pierce Brown. It's the sequel to Red Rising. Random House gave me an ARC eBook in exchange for a review. I'm enjoying it so far (I loved the first one.) Just wish they weren't so gritty.

Are there any New Authors you are interested in for us to watch out for? and Why should we watch out for them? 
My writer buddies Brock Booher and Adrienne Quintana have written awesome debut novels and can't wait to read more from them! Also, Janette Rallison is one of the most underrated authors out there. Every one of her books I've read have been hilarious and engaging.

What do you think about book trailers?
Since they will never be up to the level of professional movie trailers, they can only come across as hokey. Even the professionally done ones I've seen on TV: Lame.

What piece of advice would you give to a new writer?
Keep writing. If no one likes your first (or second) story, keep pumping out the novels. You'll get better as you go, and soon you'll have a best seller on your hands. (It also helps to read books on the craft and find competent beta readers....i.e. not your mom.) 

Do you or would you ever use a pen name? 
Although my friends know me as Ryan, I decided to go with RC (middle name Charles) for three reasons: 1. So I can quickly tell the difference between friends and fans. (Although I love them both.) 2. My favourite British Authors use initials. (CS Lewis, JK Rowling, JRR Tolkien.) 3. Currently authors who use initials are mostly women trying to identify with male readers (like my author friend CJ Hill--Janette Rallison who writes about dragons.) By hiding my male identity, I hope to take away a little of the stigma that authors who go by their initials are always women trying to hide their gender.


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REVIEW
Title: Uncommon Blue
Series: Colorblind 
Author: R.C. Hancock
Publisher: Cedar Fort Publishing
Release Date: 9th December 2014

BLURB from Goodreads
In Télesphore, the glowing color of a person’s palm determines their place in society, and touching hands with another mixes the colors permanently. When sixteen-year-old Bruno accidentally kills a royal soldier, he goes from favored to fugitive. Now Bruno's only chance at survival is to become someone else. That means a haircut, a change of wardrobe, and most important, getting rid of his once cherished Blue. Now he’s visiting parts of town he never knew existed, and making friends with people he would've crossed the street to avoid only weeks ago. At the last minute, Bruno’s parents arrange a deal to clear his name and get his life back. All Bruno has to do is abandon those in the Red slums that look to him as a leader and let an innocent Green boy die in his place.

INITIAL THOUGHTS
I was seriously looking forward to this one. The author R.C. Hancock had actually contacted me himself and asked it I would be interested in reading his book when it was available. I read the info he sent me about the book and to be honest I'd have read it straightaway if it had been available then! So I signed up to the tour. Then there was a small hiccup and I didn't hear anything, somehow my name hadn't been added to the tour list, however Meagen at Cedar Fort soon sorted this out when I explained I really wanted to read and review this book. I truly loved the premise of the blurb, it gave me high expectations for reading the book.

MY REVIEW
So as you will have gathered, I received an e-copy of this book via Cedar Fort Publishing (who were one of the first publishing houses to send me books to read and review when I first started blogging back in August 2011) in exchange for my honest review. 
The cover of the book shows a pair of hands producing fire. I'd say from reading the book, the hands belong to Bruno. Bruno's fire is blue which is the highest colour in the hierarchy that makes up the dystopian society in this book.  Would the cover attract my eye enough to make me pick up the book in a book store? Yes it would!
The title of "Uncommon Blue" and also Series name "Colorblind" both fit the book well, you will discover the reason for this as you read the book. It's so difficult to explain without giving spoilers.
Now to the book, the society in this book is a tiered system which is dependant on what colour light/fire comes from your hands. Bruno is part of the highest of society the blues.
Then there's the "second class" citizens the greens, and the lowest of the low and most feared, yet thought of as "riff-raff" the reds. If you touch the fire of someone else then your own fire is no longer pure and can change colour too. When a boy tricks Bruno into touching his own fire, Bruno's fire changes. As his fire colour has changed he will no longer be welcome on the "blue" side of the town. However something else happens which is a major part of the storyline which I don't want to reveal, which makes Bruno wanted by the police too. Bruno disguises himself and take on various false names to evade the authorities and try to find the mysterious Aaren, who blackmailed the young boy Baptiste into touching fires with Bruno. This plot may sound complicated but it does make perfect sense and flow quite well when you are reading the book. I read a fairly uncorrected e-copy and the story still flowed enough for me to overlook the corrections that needed to be done. If you like dystopian plots that have a class system at the root of the society then this is for you. You also learn some interesting facts about Bruno's family, especially his grandmother, I really adored her rebellious character and the way she encouraged Bruno to think for himself and follow his heart. Within the book you do get a good look at all three sections of society, those at the top, revered and somewhat spoilt blues, to the greens who don't have as much as the blues but have a decent living, then finally the reds, thought to all be thieves, and the lowest of society, living in tents in the "slums" .
There is a little romance within this book too, kind of "West Side Story" feel, Bruno the privileged blue and Veronica the poor yet proud red. I did enjoy the conversations between the two, and how no matter how hard Bruno tried he seemed to always say the wrong thing to Veronica. Bruno does have some pretty large life changing decisions to make throughout the book. He often looks to his grandmother for guidance who basically tell's him when he needs to know what is right from wrong he will feel it in his heart, then it is up to him what choice he makes.
Right at the end of this book it seems the society has a new leader, so this makes you question if the society will change? Will the laws of the society change and how? Will life improve for the reds. Or will the new leader be merely a figure head and not allowed to change the society for the better.
The book is not only enjoyable but is also thought provoking, it certainly makes you compare certain parts of the book to our own society that we live in today and how things could turn so easily.
So did I enjoy the book?  Yes, I managed to read past the sentences that ended mid flow etc. and I really enjoyed the book, including learning about the society featured in the book.   Would I recommend the book? I would! if you like dystopian this book should be on your to read list.  Would I want to read more in this series? Yes please, I'd read the next one now if it were available! Would I be interested in reading other books by this author? I would certainly take a close look at any book by this author.

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