I wanted to conduct an experiment.
Amazon lists an arguably helpful group of books under ‘Customers who bought this item also bought…’
But were these books really comparable to my own? Was the writing on the same level, the genre similar enough to appeal to my fans? I looked at those listed for my first book in The Druid’s Brooch Series, Legacy of Hunger.
As a bit of background, Legacy of Hunger is historical fantasy set in 1846 Ireland.
I bought several books on this list and read them, just to see how close that metric really came.
I did concentrate on those that had a higher number of reviews than my own, simply because those are presumably the most likely to be higher in quality. I want to look for works to emulate, not fuel my ego.
The 400-lb gorilla in the room was, of course, Diana Gabaldon’s Virgins, an Outlander novel that was released recently. It had over 800 reviews, and of course, Gabaldon is a blockbuster bestselling author. I’ve met her at Dragoncon, she’s fantastic, and I’m a huge fan of her books. The story was one of adventure in historical Europe, between men during a war. She is actually my inspiration. There is no way I am on her level, but a girl can dream, can’t she?
The next biggest one looked very similar to my own. It’s a boxed set of the Emerald Isle Trilogy by Renee Vincent. While these are definitely romance books, and set in medieval times with Vikings, I could see some of the similarities in writing with my own books. I think my writing in my first book is about on par if not a bit less purple and melodramatic than hers. However, I am of course biased.
The third book I examined was The Girl on the Mountain by Carol Ervin. While this wasn’t Irish, instead set in West Virginia, the story was more similar to my own. A quest of a young woman to find her family. Her writing style also seemed to be on par with my own, with similar voice and internal dialogues. I liked the story a lot, and felt true sympathy for the main character.
Granted, a choice of three books out of 100 wasn’t a scientific sampling by any means. However, it looks like the books ranged a lot in subject matter and style, with some outliers in terms of talent level (like Gabaldon being WAY outside of my league). The others were more comparable.
Perhaps Amazon wasn’t all that wrong in its suggestions. Of course, some of the other options were pure historical books, tiem travel novels, romances, and pirates. Pirates??
I write historical fantasy novels, mostly set in Ireland, and a contemporary romance based on my parents’ 30-year search for true love. Don’t miss information on Celtic myth and history, as well as practical travel planning tips, and hidden places, in my travel books.
– Better To Have Loved – Contemporary romance based on the true story of my parents’ 30-year search for love
– Legacy of Hunger – Historical fantasy set in 1846 Ireland
– Legacy of Truth – Historical fantasy set around 1800 Ireland. Prequel to Legacy of Hunger. Available now!
– Legacy of Luck – Historical fantasy set in 1745 Ireland and Scotland. Prequel to Legacy of Truth, tentative release date January 11, 2017!
– The Enchanted Swans – Historical fantasy set in 500 BCE Ireland, based on The Children of Lir, an Irish Fairy Tale. Tentative release date March 8, 2017!
More info at Green Dragon Artist :: Home ,
Christy Jackson Nicholas, Author , and
Tirgearr Publishing – Christy Nicholas