Wise, Kim: Crossing the Line (2015 / Territories #1)

I recently entered a goodreads giveaway and I actually won something! This never happens! Although I frequently scam messages claiming that I won an Iphone / 1000€, I can’t remember ever actually winning anything.


The book arrived last weekend, and it couldn’t have come at a better time. I caught a mean tonsillitis that keeps me from doing anything fun – or productive for that matter -, so having something to keep the boredom at bay while not triggering a splitting headache from concentrating too hard is paramount.


Crossing the Line was perfect for this purpose. It’s not a novel I would usually pick up, but its subject matter was interesting and its pace was fast enough to keep me reading. It’s the first part of a trilogy and I could tell from the beginning that it was not meant as a standalone novel: some of the exposition was much too detailed for a 290-page novel and even though I said that the pace was fast enough, it would have to be much faster for all the loose ends to be tied up at the end of the novel.

I don’t usually read a lot of fantasy novels, so the mixture of themes that came up in Crossing the Line was intriguing to me. I would describe it as a mystery-fantasy story revolving around an ancient magical jewel, Indian tribal magic, werewolves and experiments around genetic sequencing.

Some pages in I was slightly concerned that I would have to send this one over to my dear friend for her to review on her blog dedicated to dissecting painfully bad erotic literature, but after one slightly weird scene – the female protagonist started stripping in a parking lot for no good reason – it took a turn for the better. While the novel does have some erotic elements, it does not go down the ‘I’m-being-raped-but-I-don’t-care-because-now-that-I-feel-his-magic-dick-I’m-totally-into-it’ road, which is reassuring.

I think I would have let it end a bit before it did, so it would have ended on a cliff hanger rather than sort of in the middle of nowhere, which leads me to my one big issue with this novel: it is self-published. Now don’t get me wrong – I think it’s great that aspiring authors don’t have to rely on publishing companies to take them aboard*, but I also see the advantages of having an editor read over your work and correct / tweak it in places. Editing helps to avoid mistakes and missing / doubled words, but what’s even more important: a good editor makes the book better as a whole. A good editor isn’t as attached to every single sentence in a novel as the author might be, which is why a good editor will tell the author to cut down whole passages if they’re superfluous, just as a good editor will let the author know if something is unclear and needs to be explained to the reader in more detail for them to be able to follow along.

*although this requirement would have saved us from Fifty Shades of Grey. Hm.

I know I’m not the first one to point out this major flaw in the whole self-publishing business, and if you’d like to read more about this, I’ll recommend this post by fellow reader-blogger Fran.

But back to the novel itself: I did overall enjoy it. I started reading it chapter by chapter in-between doing other things before I just powered through the remaining 200+ pages in one day. It was a nice change to the genres I usually gravitate towards, and I’ll be looking out for part two of the trilogy, Beyond Boundaries, which Ms Wise is working on right now.

Disclaimer: I did receive this book free of charge through a goodreads giveaway. However, I was not compensated for this review and all views and opinions expressed in this post are my own.

Did you ever win a book in a giveaway? Did you like it? 

What’s your stance of self-published books?




7 thoughts on “Wise, Kim: Crossing the Line (2015 / Territories #1)

  1. So far my experience with self-published books has been rather negative, I’m afraid. While the ideas and the plot of the novels are often interesting, they usually lack the hand of a good editor: not only in regards to spelling or grammar mistakes, which are in a published and printed book unacceptable to me, but also when it comes to streamlining the plot and stressing the main ideas of the novel. If someone wants to be a good writer they need to consult a good editor, who can help them with their current project as well as guide them into becoming a better and more structured author. Having your best friend read over your manuscript will neither result in good nor honest feedback. If we want to maintain a quality-oriented bookmarket, editors will have to stay in a central position.

    Liked by 1 person

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