Monday, January 28, 2013

Blog Tour Mini Review and Giveaway: Oxford Whispers

Oxford Whispers (The Oxford Trilogy, # 1)Author: Marion Croslydon
Series: The Oxford Trilogy, #1
Release date: October 8th 2012
Publisher: Carlux Publishing
Buy: Amazon

Madison LeBon is dead set against the dead. She has vowed to ignore her Voodoo-stamped heritage and the psychic gift passed down through her Louisiana family. The world of the living is where she wants to belong. But her resolution shatters when the tragic lovers in a painting—the subject of her first history class at Oxford—begin to haunt her. The lovers warn her against their own nemesis, a Puritan from the English Civil War.

College becomes more complicated when Madison falls hard for Rupert Vance, a troubled aristocrat and descendant of one of the characters in the painting. With the spirit of a murderer after her, she realizes that her own first love may also be doomed…


I signed up for this tour not knowing a single thing about Oxford Whispers other than its intriguing title and the lovely cover. Usually when I do this, I end up sorely disappointed, but fortunately, there are many things I enjoyed about Marion Croslydon’s debut.

Oxford Whispers focuses partly on Madison’s ability to see and communicate with ghosts as well as her family history and beliefs, and partly on her romance with the young future Earl Rupert Vance. The paranormal parts of this story were quite original, which isn’t something I get to write often, and I loved all the jumping between the past and the present.

Unsurprisingly, my favorite thing about Oxford Whispers was the setting. Like our Louisiana girl, Madison, the author spent some time studying in Oxford, and her familiarity with it was evident on every page. Oxford Whispers is not just Madison and Rupert’s love story, or even Sarah and Robert’s, it is the author’s love letter to Oxford, and it’s a lovely one at that. I learned a few things from it, and it thrilled me to find out some new details about such an astonishing place.

It was far easier for me to connect with Madison’s love interest, the young and gorgeous future Earl Rupert Vance, than Madison herself. Yes, he was just a bit too handsome, a bit too rich, a bit too eloquent. His father hated him far too much, his girlfriend Harriet was an evil Barbie doll, his car was extravagant and his friends were mostly rich jerks. For over four years, he carried around a huge guilt, and then he got rid of it in a single night, all because he found the perfect girl. In other words, he was no more than a cliché. But underneath it all, I managed to find some genuine feelings, a character that could potentially become everything I want in a love interest, or even a second main character, judging from the way things are going.

Clichés aside, with the events of the past foreshadowing current ones, there really wasn’t much room for surprise. About 90% of this book was painfully predictable. But then, in the very last part came a shocking revelation, a thing I never would have guessed, which made me both increase my rating and decide to read the next book.

And since I’ve mentioned the next book, it’s supposed to be about the Tudors – who wouldn’t want to read that?! I only hope that the author will flesh out her characters just a little bit better in the next one because, as I already pointed out, they definitely need more work.

About the author

In addition to being an author, I work as an entrepreneur, wife and mother-of-one but spend a good deal of time with books, DVDs and listening to my mp3 player; all for the sake of inspiration, of course. 

My debut series, The Oxford Trilogy, has been a blast to write because I can indulge in my favorite types of music: Country and English rock. 
My main goal as a writer is to make readers dream bigger and cause their hearts to beat a little faster. 
Since my writing is all about sharing dreams and stories, I love connecting with fellow readers and authors.

Please visit other tour stops here.


  1. I skipped this blog tour just because I was afraid that I wouldn't like the book. It actually sounds really interesting. Maybe I'll read it one day, but about the second book - huh way too much books about Tudors for my taste. Great review :)

  2. Painfully predictable is usually not a great thing. Sometimes, I like predictability but not *that* much. Still, I'd be all over the setting, too.

  3. Despite the book's flaws, the premise does sound interesting. I like how books like this go beyond the paranormal genre and try something new. Not sure if it's right for me, but I have to say I'm curious about the Tudors setting for the next one.

  4. I love how your mini review is longer than my regular reviews Maja:) You're like me, once you get writing your thoughts you suddenly end up with paragraph after paragraph of them. LOVE IT:) I like that despite the cliched nature of his character, you still were able to connect with Rupert. As long ad I can connect with the characters, I'm usually pretty good to go with a story!

  5. I loved Rupert in this story as well, Maja. I agree, the supernatural aspect of this was quite original. Lovely review as usual.

    I'm glad I found out the correct pronunciation of your name, since I'd been thinking it differently for so long! Thank goodness Flann set me straight. :) Btw, I hope you do pick up The Opportunist because I'm curious to see what you think of it. As you know, my husband, Arlene, and I were gossiping about it the whole weekend, lol! :)

  6. I'm so glad you ended up enjoying this book! Usually when I give a book a chance without really knowing anything about it, I end up disappointed as well. But I think I'll be giving this book a chance! Great review :)
    World of Books

  7. I'm glad that despite the cliches and predictability you were able to find enough merit in the story to continue on to book two in the series. The shocker ending combined with the book being a love letter to Oxford definitely has me intrigued; I might have to check this one out. I have a serious soft spot for Oxford settings after His Dark Materials. :-) Wonderful mini-review!

  8. I know, you would think we would learn our lessons about picking up a book based on its cover. I seriously got burned last year at the end with some of my tours so I am totally backing off them this year. I am glad though that this one ended up being a good read for you and I am super curious as to what the big surprise is

  9. LOL At least I know I'm not the only one who does this. :)

    I don't mind clichés sometimes. It looks like this is a book that I wouldn't mind it too much. Sometimes they are just fun to read. :) Plus, I like how you did find a way to connect to Rupert. I also love it when most is predictable and then throws you. Curious about that. :) Brilly review!

  10. I found out a little about this book yesterday so your review is perfectly timed! It's interesting to hear that this book is set in Oxford. I can't think of many other books that I've read recently that have been set there, but I'm curious to see how the author approached it. I've been there a few times and it's lovely. I'm glad that the ending managed to make up for the initial predictability, and I hope the next book will be a little better in the character department. Lovely review, Maja!

  11. I'm interested in these books solely because of the settings and the fact that I love a good dose of history. It's a shame that it relies on so many cliche tropes, though - I don't know how well I'd enjoy that. It does seem a little convenient-ish for the novel as a whole. Yet, I might need to check this out if I have some free time. Incredible review, Maja! :)

  12. Not my usual type of story, but sounds interesting :)

  13. I like the idea of communicating with ghosts, and glad to hear that you enjoyed the setting.
    Happy reading,
    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog


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