As an author myself, I don't usually write reviews for business reasons, but as a horse owner, this one is special, and for a great cause.
My thoughts: Anna did an awesome job with The Auction. I was instantly drawn into the characters' lives, and felt like I was right alongside Rosie as she struggled to keep her life from falling apart, and then also the lives of the adorable, Pippa, and her father, Adam. The book is long, but Anna's writing style had me settling in to read with pure, relaxing enjoyment instead of paging forward to see when I'd get to the good stuff. It's ALL good. The courtroom scene is especially well crafted. Great job, Anna!
I loved the whole book and highly recommend buying a copy to enjoy while helping out a great cause.
by Anna Erishkigal
Dumped at the altar and left without a home, Rosie Xalbadora takes a job as a governess at the edge of the Australian outback. There she meets Pippa Bristow, a sensitive child who copes with her parent's bitter divorce by escaping into a magical world of fairy queens and unicorns. Pippa's enigmatic father, Adam Bristow, is willing to endure whatever he must to keep his daughter safe from his oil heiress ex-wife.
Struggling to shield Pippa from her mother's games, Rosie must face the ghosts of her own painful past while fighting a growing attraction to her handsome, emotionally unavailable employer. When Rosie and Pippa save a small, white pony from slaughter, their ill-timed compassion puts Adam's custody dispute, Pippa's fantasies, and Rosie's worst fears all up for bid in an epic showdown.
The Auction is a sweet, contemporary romance styled with the heart-wrenching, Gothic undertones of Jane Eyre and just a hint of the supernatural.
Here's what Anna had to say when I asked her why she wrote this book:
Beginning last year, one of my Australian friends became involved in a legal case to rescue horses from an owner who had essentially turned their horses out into a field to starve. Because most unwanted horses go to a slaughterhouse, the government is put in the untenable position that intervention is often worse than the neglect itself.
Now nobody wants to read a story about horse slaughter. So as I was daydreaming about how to cast this difficult social issue in a palatable, hopeful light, I asked my daughters about what kinds of human characters I should set into this story. My 10-year-old wanted a little girl who got a pony, so thus Pippa was born. My 12-year-old, on the other hand, is into 'dark' young adult novels, so she suggested a girl whose mother didn't like her. Since it's infeasible for a 10 and 12 year old to go to an auction to buy a horse, I made Rosamond older, and made her a teacher/governess because, if she was Pippa's mother, she could simply buy the horse for Pippa.
That, of course, got into the issue of Pippa's parents, who they were and why they needed to hire a governess who had enough leeway to sneak the little girl to an auction in the first place, so thus was born Adam Bristow. At that point, I had three characters (one of them a governess) and a horse, all living on a cattle station in drought-ridden Australia, so they took over. I claim no responsibility for my characters actions!!! Once they start whispering to me, they take me down some strange rabbit-holes of fascinating research, hijack my life and won't shut up until I write down all the sordid details!
I set the story in Australia because that was where the horse rescue case which initially caught my imagination happened and I was under the impression that here, in the United States, horse slaughter was illegal. Boy, was I wrong! As I researched real-life horse auctions, I discovered we (in the USA) ship 200,000 horses a year to Mexican and Canadian slaughterhouses in horrifically inhumane conditions. The worse thing is that most American's are blissfully unaware they have just condemned their family pet to a horrific death.
Since I live in the USA, I will donate any royalties I earn during the month of November to the Humane Society of the United States so that 100% of the royalties can go to help the horses (when you donate internationally, the tax-man takes 30%).
You can donate to the Humane Society of the USA and learn more HERE:
There are many wonderful organizations worldwide, ranging from national RSPCA organizations to tiny rescue organizations that peruse the auctions and save one horse's life at a time. They are all worthy of your support. It's my hope, by writing an entertaining love story with a horse rescue hidden in the middle that more people will become aware this problem exists.
You can grab your copy of The Auction at any of the following links:
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About Anna: Anna Erishkigal is an attorney who writes fantasy fiction under a pen-name so her colleagues don't question whether her legal pleadings are fantasy fiction as well. Much of law, it turns out, -is- fantasy fiction. Lawyers just prefer to call it 'zealously representing your client.'
Seeing the dark underbelly of life makes for some interesting fictional characters. The kind you either want to incarcerate, or run home and write about. In fiction, you can fudge facts without worrying too much about the truth. In legal pleadings, if your client lies to you, you look stupid in front of the judge.
At least in fiction, if a character becomes troublesome, you can always kill them off...
Contact Anna at:
Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/
Facebook friends page: https://www.facebook.com/anna.
Goodreads author page: https://www.goodreads.com/
Thank you, Anna!
Readers, again, I encourage you to enjoy this book and help out.