Reviewed by: Warren
Print Length: 374 pages
Posting: Historical fiction, Action/Adventure, Novel
Publisher: SelfPub (October 15, 2014)
Book Provided by: Reviewer
Author: Bey Deckard
Posting Date: October 30, 2014
Rating: 5 Star
The second in the Baal’s Heart series is a terrific continuance of the Caged story. It follows Baal’s Heart through the Spires with all the perils that that entails, and takes the ship and the crew into a world that is totally screwy.
One of the things I really liked about the book is using retrospectives of what had happened between the two books to get us caught up and helps us follow the progression of events that happened between books. For example, after Tom has left, he has his own adventures, and using the technique to keep us up with the action, and to understand what is happening in relation to the past during his absence from Baal’s Heart, and Jon and Captain Baltsaros.
Another thing that really struck me with this second in the series are the parallels with what we are living today. Bey has taken the idea of the rich controlling the poor, of the rich feeling deserving of the power they have, and brought it into the historical element with Sacrificed.
This portion of the series in no way lets up on the action, the romance, and the swashbuckling of the pirates. The adventures the three encounter in this story are imaginative and amazing.
Going through the Spires in itself is a terrifying journey into hallucination and fear. The mysticism of the Spires kept me on the edge of my seat as I read the horror the company was going through, and the jubilation when the secret is discovered and used to save the lives of the crew. And then the story just gets more exciting and suspenseful.
We are taken into a city where the ruler uses fear, intimidation, and violence to make the people believe in the desire of the gods for blood, and the need of the people to sacrifice their own to appease these vengeful gods. He has spies to keep the people under control, and the slavery of humans is prolific in this world. His lust and will for power and riches drives him to use the tools he has to keep control of his people.
The main characters, Jon, Tom, and the Captain turn from pirates to heroes in this amazingly well-written tale. They use their guile and smarts to discover what is going on, who is responsible, and how to fight the powers that be to save the city and help the people regain control of their lives and their minds.
This is such a fun read. Even though it uses the flashback style to give us the retrospectives, it is in no way distracting to the story, and helps us understand even more the thoughts and reasons for the things Tom does, for the feelings Jon has for Tom and the Captain, and shows the true Captain and what is really in his heart.
Read Caged, and then read Sacrificed. It is a wonderful story. I loved this book as much as the first.
The Book Description:
Reunited once more, the crew of Baal’s Heart must make the long and treacherous journey south to the towering spires of the Devil’s Isles. The path through the mountain range is fraught with peril; mayhem and tragedy plague the pirate ship, but what the men find beyond the spires is the most shocking of all.
In this sequel to the acclaimed Caged, the pirates are dragged into a dangerous new world by Captain Baltsaros’s all-consuming obsession. In the midst of terror and chaos, Jon learns that the captain and first mate have been keeping secrets from him. But will the truth tear them apart?
The Social Links:
An Interview by Warren:
Hello Bey! Thank you so much for agreeing to do this interview for/with me. I am really excited to hear about you and your creative processes.
Warren: First of all, would you please tell us a little about your background and your interests; only as much as you feel comfortable telling? Things such as pets, hobbies, your education, and anything else we might find interesting.
Bey: Hm. Let’s see. I’m originally French Canadian, but you’d never know that my first language is French from hearing me talk. Was fully assimilated by the anglos when I moved to Montréal as a kid.
I have a dog named Murphy. He’s what most would consider a pit bull—a muscle-y, short-haired, blocky-headed little guy. He’s my best bud and is almost always by my side. Murph’s a real charmer; everyone loves him.
As for education, well, I have a bachelor’s in Fuck-All (BFA in Art History and part of a degree in Anthropology). I was intending on going back and doing a master’s in Archaeology, but then I somehow wound up in the software industry and was a corporate drone and manager at a big company for over a decade.
Warren: I know this is only your second book to be released. The first one, of course, came out to high reviews, and I rave about it all the time. How did you start writing? Where does your imagination come from to come up with such wonderful storylines? What is your inspiration?
Bey: Thanks for the raving! *grins*
Well, I sat down last summer (2013) and started writing almost out of the blue. I’d never really written anything before except for a snippet here and there over a decade earlier. I had no idea I had any talent in that department. A good friend of mine read what I writing and told me that it was really fucking great, and I should write more.
So… I started writing Caged. Still more than a little mind-blowing that folks really seem to dig it.
I’ve always had a great imagination. I’m the oldest in my generation, and I spent a lot of time telling stories to all my many little cousins.
And, as for inspiration? Well, for one I watch a ton of movies… of almost all types. I think out of everything, film probably influences my writing the most. Inspiration comes from my habit of taking scenes from movies, sometimes layering different ones, and changing some elements, then playing the result out in my head to its conclusion to see how it would be different.
Dreams definitely come into play too… I dream in HD with THX sound, sometimes replete with soundtrack and credits rolling at the end (maybe I watch too many movies?).
I also read a lot—or at least I used to read a lot before I started writing all the time. I used to get through 150+ books a year for a long time, and my house is filled with overstuffed bookshelves. I miss reading. But who has time any more? I have so much left to tell.
Warren: Tell us about your writing style, and also your writing environment. Do you have music going or anything like that? And if so, can you give us a couple examples of your playlist? Where do you write?
Bey: Ha. Well, I write on my couch. I’m going to cripple myself doing it, I know. I’m looking for a desk, and I’ll fix up a place to put it so I can write like a real goddamn professional instead of a half-assed lazy git. That’s on my to-do. I also write on the go—though less these days than when I was writing Caged. At least a third of Caged was written on my iPhone.
I write a chapter. I edit it down to about half. Write in some more. Edit it again. Write, edit, write, edit. When it feels right, I move onto the next chapter. When I’m done, I read the whole book over once or twice and make whatever changes need to be made.
I have a soundtrack for the first two books in the Baal’s Heart trilogy (you can find them at http://www.baals-heart.com/soundtracks/ if you’re curious) and those are usually playing out of my laptop speakers while I write. A mishmash of styles: Great Big Sea, Nine Inch Nails, Woodkid, The Pogues, Rachid Taha… My tastes run the gamut, really. Otherwise it’s stuff like Wardruna, the soundtrack to Spartacus, or more recently, the soundtrack to Locke. I try not to drink too much while writing, but especially when I’m editing. Do not edit while drunk. I should stick that at the top of my screen in bold black letters. And, of course, Murphy is usually snoring by my side.