Dashing Through The Snow by T.M. Souder
(Publisher: Amazon Digital Services)
Dashing Through The Snow by T.M. Souders had few things to recommend it. The cover of the Novella attracted me, but the story lacked the depth typical of a good romance.
Souders writes a love story about Wynn and Zane. Wynn has been in love with Zane for five years. She runs a bakery with her off-color sister, Gemma. Gemma is not shy about spouting her opinion on anything, especially ex-boyfriends. Wynn just got out of a bad relationship with Larry. Gemma calls Larry a despicable name, perhaps deserved, but her explanation in chapter 1 for that name was unnecessary. I think most readers will be able to figure it out.
The love story that held so much promise stumbles beginning in chapter one. Predictability and cliches are the death of any love story. All I learned about Zane and why Wynn loved him for so long was his good looks and saintly attitude as he gives selflessly to charitable causes. I picked up little about his personality and could not connect emotionally with the three main characters. Wynn and Gemma did not sound like two women who ran a bakery and deserved respect. Instead, I felt like I stepped into the middle of two high school youth discussing a possible prom date. The predictability comes in when Zane walks in with another woman. It turns out the other woman is the clingy ex-girlfriend. Again, predictable. For tension, I would have brought in Larry to try to win back Wynn. Nothing stirs the blood like two stags battling it out over a doe.
The ending is too neat. Maybe I would have felt differently about the ending if I had been able to see the personalities of Zane and Wynn more clearly. Besides his good looks and saintly attitude, what else do I know except a little about his family? Souder describes some dates via conversations between Wynn and Gemma, but I was disappointed not to read about the dates as they occurred. That would have given me a clue about why Zane and Wynn love each other and what could be the glue to keep them together in the “happily-ever-after.”
A few times in the novella, Souders writing pops. It’s when I actually get to see Zane or Wynn’s personality emerge from the romantic cliches. The originality of the phrases make me smile. “She held both bags out, examining each with the detail of a Gemologist,” told me about Gemma. My other favorite phrase came from Zane, “By the time they had left Uncle Leroy’s, he knew a whole lot more about Barium X-rays, but little more about Wynn’s whereabouts.” Otherwise, the novella needed a good editor and a few rounds with a critique group to really develop the story into something viable. There was more telling than showing.
Two-star book reviews aren’t easy to write when you know what it’s like to be a writer and the heart that goes into each page. To read more of my thoughts, click here. The book above is on sale for .99 cents. It’s not a large investment to see for yourself if you could fall in love with Zane and Wynn. As for future T.M. Souders books, I would probably read a sample chapter first before deciding to buy. She has potential. This book was given by WoMen’s Literary Cafe to review.