Newest Review: Rarity from the Hollow

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robert eggleton
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Newest Review: Rarity from the Hollow

Postby robert eggleton » Tue Aug 12, 2014 6:53 pm

A Universe On the Edge
RARITY FROM THE HOLLOW. Robert Eggleton. Fatcat Press. eBook Published 2014.

Image courtesy of the author.
Lacy Dawn is a little girl who lives in a magical forest where all the trees love her and she has a space alien friend who adores her and wants to make her queen of the universe. What’s more, all the boys admire her for her beauty and brains. Mommy is very beautiful and Daddy is very smart, and Daddy’s boss loves them all.
Except.
Lacy Dawn, the eleven year old protagonist, perches precariously between the psychosis of childhood and the multiple neuroses of adolescence, buffeted by powerful gusts of budding sexuality and infused with a yearning to escape the grim and brutal life of a rural Appalachian existence. In this world, Daddy is a drunk with severe PTSD, and Mommy is an insecure wraith. The boss is a dodgy lecher, not above leering at the flat chest of an eleven-year-old girl.
Yes, all in one book.
Rarity From The Hollow is written in a simple declarative style that’s well- suited to the imaginary diary of a desperate but intelligent eleven-year-old – the story bumping joyfully between the extraordinary and the banal.
The central planet of the universe is a vast shopping mall, and Lacy Dawn must save her world from a menace that arrives in the form of a cockroach infestation. Look again and the space alien has made Daddy smart and happy – or at least an eleven year old girl’s notion of what a smart and happy man should be. He has also made Mommy beautiful, giving her false teeth and getting the food stamp lady off her back.
About the only thing in the book that is believable is the nature of the narrative voice, and it is utterly compelling. You find yourself convinced that “Hollow” was written as a diary-based autobiography by a young girl, and the banal stems from the limits of her environment, the extraordinary from her megalomania. And that’s what gives Rarity From The Hollow a chilling, engaging verisimilitude that deftly feeds on both the utter absurdity of the characters’ motivations and on the progression of the plot.
Indeed, there are moments of utter darkness: In one sequence, Lacy Dawn remarks matter-of-factly that a classmate was whipped to death, and notes that the assailant, the girl’s father, had to change his underpants afterward because they were soiled with semen. Odd, and often chilling notes, abound.
As I was reading it, I remembered when I first read Vonnegut’s “Cat’s Cradle” at the age of 14. A veteran of Swift, Heller, and Frederick Brown, I understood absurdist humour in satire, but Vonnegut took that understanding and turned it on its ear.
In the spirit of Vonnegut, Eggleton (a psychotherapist focused on the adolescent patient) takes the genre and gives it another quarter turn. A lot of people hated Vonnegut, saying he didn’t know the rules of good writing. But that wasn’t true. Vonnegut knew the rules quite well, he just chose to ignore them, and that is what is happening in Eggleton’s novel, as well.
Not everyone will like Rarity From The Hollow. Nonetheless, it should not be ignored.
by Bryan Zepp Jamieson

Dog Horn Publishing, Leeds, England
http://www.amazon.com/Rarity-from-the-H ... B007JDI508 (ebook)
http://www.lulu.com/shop/robert-eggleto ... 03207.html (paperback)
http://www.doghornpublishing.com/books/ ... ollow.html (hardback or paperback)
"Rarity from the Hollow" -- a fun novel that raises funds to prevent child abuse

robert eggleton
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A Poet's Acclaim

Postby robert eggleton » Fri May 22, 2015 12:11 pm

"The book reached straight for my heart-strings. Robert Eggleton is a gifted storyteller of boundless imagination and masterful skill. Rarity from the Hollow is a dark, humorous and suspenseful science-fantasy story that showcases Eggleton's expert characterization, description and dialogue. His frank and honest portrayal of poverty in rural Appalachia is reminiscent of Stephen King's use of "everyday horrors" to create a convincing sense of dread. Eggleton counters the story's dark mood with touches of warmth and humor, à la Ray Bradbury. I look forward to reading more from this rare, original author."

J. D. Nelson: http://www.MadVerse.com
"Rarity from the Hollow" -- a fun novel that raises funds to prevent child abuse

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Re: Newest Review: Rarity from the Hollow

Postby pls » Fri May 22, 2015 12:23 pm

Okay, enough. You're getting into self-promotion now. And if you hadn't noticed, I nuke promoters in this forum.
Facebook page (Friend me!): http://www.facebook.com/TheHighSchoolNovels

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Weed Kills? Newest Reviews: Rarity from the Hollow

Postby robert eggleton » Mon Jun 22, 2015 9:22 am

Rarity from the Hollow has created a little buzz since the last time I told you about this almost decade old project: a couple of author interviews, several Spotlights, but only one major, a giveaway by the publisher, and a couple of reviews which I found the most interesting because of the contrast in perspectives. Both reviews were very positive, but from very different angles.

The first review used a lot of profanity and urban cliche, and focused mainly on the use of marijuana by characters in the novel. A link for this review is below, but note that I've forewarned you about its content. Don't go there if you believe that you might be offended. After having received the email that it had been posted, the first paragraph stunned me and I got worried about the overall finding. It turned out positive in the end, with 4 out of 5 stars from a guy who's blog is entitled, [i]Glenn Hates Books[i] and the review of my novel was the highest rated on his blog at the time of publication. Not that bad. I felt a little better when he tweeted me that my novel was a great book. But, I wondered, "why didn't you tell the world that?" Instead, he focused on getting high and weed.

Yes, my novel subliminally advocates for research into medicinal use of marijuana for treatment of PTSD and Bipolar Disorder. Two characters with these respective mental health disorders could be called "pot heads," but there were so many other metaphors and analogies. To list a couple:

"Faith is Dead" (she is a character in the novel who was killed by her father) relates to the decline in attendance of churches in America and suspected agnosticism of our citizens.

Subcultural basis for the protagonist (Lacy Dawn) being referred to by her first and middle names, the same as I'm sometimes called Billy Bob. Glenn actually refused to call her anything but Lacy in his review, which I felt was a little disrespectful.

Glenn also missed the analogy between the addiction to accumulation of excessive wealth and an off-world competition based on Capitalism that justified a planet's continued existence == capitalism as related to the long-term survival of this planet as exemplified by global warming, etc.

One thing that Glenn didn't miss was smoking weed. On the other hand, after decades of abstinence, his review caused me to consider calling an old friend.

http://www.risingshadow.net/library/boo ... the-hollow

The next review was the polar opposite. I'm a licensed psychotherapist with a focus on children. Half of author proceeds have been donated to a nonprofit agency that helps abused kids in my home state, West Virginia. This review was also very positive, but more space was used to describe the services that the nonprofit agency delivers than to the actual book review. Don' get me wrong, I sincerely would prefer that readers of this review donate to a worthwhile cause than to buy my novel. While acknowledging the references to marijuana in the novel, the review was very low key on this subject and it was incorporated into an analysis of the characters -- how the reader personally felt about the characters. This reviewer aptly concluded that if the science fiction and fantasy aspects of my novel would be deleted, it could be a story about an abused child anyplace in the world, not just a hollow in West Virginia. Unlike the reviews that I posted before (probably one is above, maybe two), there was no mention in this review that the fantasy elements of my novel could be the result of psychosis resultant from the protagonist's trauma. Below is the link. BTW, a reader review on Amazon concluded that my novel was for the whole family. It must have been posted by a person who won a giveaway or somehow got my novel for free. I don't know but it was not a registered purchase. I agree with this review. There must be millions of families in America that include one or more parents who smoke pot.

(Sorry, post was rejected: only one url allowed. If you want to read this review, you will have to find Mountain Rhinestones Blog + Rarity from the Hollow.)

robert eggleton
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Re: Newest Review: Rarity from the Hollow

Postby robert eggleton » Mon Aug 31, 2015 11:29 pm

"Rarity from the Hollow' written by Robert Eggleton, to be fully honest, was much more than expected and a great read - semi-autobiographical literary work full of beautiful and ugly things, adventure, romance, pain and humor...offers very good pace, keeping the reader occupied through whole of its duration succeeding from the start to deliver an exciting story, well-crafted characters put into well-conceived world. Therefore, his book can be recommended to the fans of SF, drama and suspense genre that are searching for something to read from the skillful author, still unknown...."
-- Helpful Advice, Top 100 Amazon Reviewer
"Rarity from the Hollow" -- a fun novel that raises funds to prevent child abuse


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