Official Review: Written by Katie Bramble

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inaramid
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Official Review: Written by Katie Bramble

Post by inaramid » 30 Jul 2019, 19:45

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Written" by Katie Bramble.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Over the course of your life, I bet you’ve found yourself at multiple crossroads, having to make a decision that would determine your future. And with all the choices you’ve made, I bet you’ve asked yourself this question at least once: What if? What if you’d gone this way instead? What if you’d taken another road? I bet you’ve also wished that there was a way to go back, undo your actions, and see what’s behind a different door.

Casey Warren — the heroine of Katie Bramble’s magical novel, Written — obtains a way to answer the major "what ifs" in her life. Although smart and talented, her fear of making the wrong decision keeps her from pursuing her passions, leaving her feeling stuck and increasingly unhappy with the way things have become. A solution arrives in the form of a journal, with each page serving as “a doorway to a different life.” Whatever Casey writes in the pages (for as long as she has the potential for it) eventually comes true. And should Casey feel that she’d taken a wrong turn, she could tear the page, obliterate the reality she’d created, and retrace her steps. But there’s a caveat: any possibility she destroys will be gone forever. She can never have that life back. Casey gains success and riches, but happiness is still elusive. Will the journal turn out to be a blessing or a curse?

Plenty of fictional works have dealt with the idea of alternate realities, and Bramble’s take on the concept is just as compelling. Maybe it’s because Written evokes a common human dilemma — the struggle for purpose and direction in one’s life. It’s very easy to relate with what Casey is going through and become completely engrossed in her story once she gains possession of the magical journal. Who wouldn’t want this power? Who wouldn’t want to have such an opportunity? To her credit, Casey doesn’t squander the chance she’s been given to create the life that she’s always wanted. She considers her options carefully, and when events don’t lead to the expected outcome, we share her frustration and despair.

Bramble crafted such a strong and coherent storyline that a reader is quickly drawn and wrapped up in the narrative. It’s clear that she’s building toward a life lesson, both for Casey and the reader. And to my relief, the message isn’t preachy, forced, or clumsily delivered. Although it’s not anything that we haven’t heard before, we reach this epiphany at the same time Casey does. The future is unknown, but sometimes, we just have to embrace the ambiguity of life and have faith that “the universe is a better organizer” than we could ever be.

I could imagine Written as a TV miniseries or a movie, and given the author’s background as a film and TV producer, this might have been her initial intention. The plot is briskly paced, and the characters — from the enigmatic woman who gave Casey the journal to Casey’s Heineken-drinking friends — all play memorable roles in how the story unfolded. The only drawback here is the presence of errors (e.g., missing punctuation marks, word usage errors, typos). While the book seemed like it was professionally edited, it could definitely use another revision.

Written gets 3 out of 4 stars from me. If you’ve ever felt adrift, lost, or in dire need of a “cosmic rewind button,” Casey’s tale will surely resonate with you. If you want a light read that’s filled with interesting bits about life in the entertainment industry, Written is an excellent choice. There are no explicit sex scenes, and there's only minimal profanity, making this suitable for younger readers as well.

******
Written
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Post by Dee_218 » 31 Jul 2019, 06:58

Sounds like an amazing novel. Could do as an amazing telenovela also. It sounds so relatable. Im at a crossroads myself with some decisions and finding myself asking if I can handle them. Thank you for sharing such a well written review.

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Post by kandscreeley » 31 Jul 2019, 08:32

This sounds a bit like a movie I saw back in the day. Mr. Destiny. It's always interesting to think about how things would be different if we made different choices. Like that saying says, though, be careful what you wish for. Thanks for the review on this one.
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Post by TuyetMai » 31 Jul 2019, 10:17

How I wish for the ability to go back to a past and twerk the present just a little bit, but it sounds like that could lead to some grave consequences. I do wonder what kind of past decisions that Casey wants to change. This would be an interesting read. Thanks for the review!

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Post by inaramid » 31 Jul 2019, 22:07

Dee_218 wrote:
31 Jul 2019, 06:58
Sounds like an amazing novel. Could do as an amazing telenovela also. It sounds so relatable. Im at a crossroads myself with some decisions and finding myself asking if I can handle them. Thank you for sharing such a well written review.
Yes, I think there's enough drama for a telenovela. Thanks for dropping by!

kandscreeley wrote:
31 Jul 2019, 08:32
This sounds a bit like a movie I saw back in the day. Mr. Destiny. It's always interesting to think about how things would be different if we made different choices. Like that saying says, though, be careful what you wish for. Thanks for the review on this one.
I looked Mr. Destiny up. They do have some similarities, though the protagonist in this one had more control about what was happening. But also true: Be careful what you wish for.

TuyetMai wrote:
31 Jul 2019, 10:17
How I wish for the ability to go back to a past and twerk the present just a little bit, but it sounds like that could lead to some grave consequences. I do wonder what kind of past decisions that Casey wants to change. This would be an interesting read. Thanks for the review!
Wouldn't it be nice to have a "rewind" or "delete" button? Or, as this story tells us, maybe not. :)

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Post by MoMarie » 01 Aug 2019, 00:21

Sounds like it has a fantastic storyline, I’m sure we all wish we could go back to some point in our past, but I’m also sure that there would be some clashes with the present. This sounds like a great story and I’d definitely be interested in reading!

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Post by Gathoni1991 » 01 Aug 2019, 02:23

The story is totally relatable. Once in a while we are at a crossroad in various aspects of our lives. But the beauty of of life is in being unaware of what the future holds.

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Post by Prisallen » 01 Aug 2019, 14:17

I'm sure we all wish we had made different decisions in our life, at some point. Part of life's challenges and rewards is not knowing what the future holds, but working hard to get what we want and learning from our mistakes. I think I would enjoy reading the book, though. Thanks for a wonderful review!

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Post by Everydayadventure15 » 01 Aug 2019, 19:10

This sounds like it would be a fun one to read. I like experiencing the “what if’s?” with characters as they make choices. Casey’s journey is one I’d like to watch unfold.

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Post by kdstrack » 01 Aug 2019, 19:49

This reminds me of time travel novels. Every time you go back something different changes. The author's theme of "what if" does attract readers. Thanks for your interesting review! This looks intriguing.

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Post by Nivi Gideon » 01 Aug 2019, 23:52

Sounds like a book I desperately am in need of right now. Thank you for the wonderful review

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Post by inaramid » 02 Aug 2019, 04:53

MoMarie wrote:
01 Aug 2019, 00:21
Sounds like it has a fantastic storyline, I’m sure we all wish we could go back to some point in our past, but I’m also sure that there would be some clashes with the present. This sounds like a great story and I’d definitely be interested in reading!
It's a great premise, and the execution is just as good. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

Gathoni1991 wrote:
01 Aug 2019, 02:23
The story is totally relatable. Once in a while we are at a crossroad in various aspects of our lives. But the beauty of of life is in being unaware of what the future holds.
True. Life is, indeed, an adventure.

Prisallen wrote:
01 Aug 2019, 14:17
I'm sure we all wish we had made different decisions in our life, at some point. Part of life's challenges and rewards is not knowing what the future holds, but working hard to get what we want and learning from our mistakes. I think I would enjoy reading the book, though. Thanks for a wonderful review!
Well said! I hope you get to read this too!

Everydayadventure15 wrote:
01 Aug 2019, 19:10
This sounds like it would be a fun one to read. I like experiencing the “what if’s?” with characters as they make choices. Casey’s journey is one I’d like to watch unfold.
This sounds like a good read for you!

kdstrack wrote:
01 Aug 2019, 19:49
This reminds me of time travel novels. Every time you go back something different changes. The author's theme of "what if" does attract readers. Thanks for your interesting review! This looks intriguing.
There's a bit of time travel element here, which I love. Thanks for dropping by!

Nivi Gideon wrote:
01 Aug 2019, 23:52
Sounds like a book I desperately am in need of right now. Thank you for the wonderful review
Thanks for dropping by!

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Post by Tomah » 05 Aug 2019, 19:32

Wow, the premise is so interesting you could write several stories approaching this power from different angles. I think I'd be too scared of messing up future possibilities to use the journal, or at the very least I would wait and ponder for a long, long time. I suppose it says a lot about me that I would likely die before ever writing a single line, but that's exactly why this device is so fascinating. Thanks for the review!

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Post by DD129 » 06 Aug 2019, 13:18

This book seems like a fun read. It sounds right up my alley with how closely related it is to time travel, alternate universes, and the 'what if?' concept. I can also appreciate that the book makes you think about whether you'd really like to have the power of redoing your choices; maybe it shouldn't always be up to you. Great review!

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Post by inaramid » 06 Aug 2019, 20:12

Tomah wrote:
05 Aug 2019, 19:32
Wow, the premise is so interesting you could write several stories approaching this power from different angles. I think I'd be too scared of messing up future possibilities to use the journal, or at the very least I would wait and ponder for a long, long time. I suppose it says a lot about me that I would likely die before ever writing a single line, but that's exactly why this device is so fascinating. Thanks for the review!
:) :) You've touched upon a core element of the plot, I think.

DD129 wrote:
06 Aug 2019, 13:18
This book seems like a fun read. It sounds right up my alley with how closely related it is to time travel, alternate universes, and the 'what if?' concept. I can also appreciate that the book makes you think about whether you'd really like to have the power of redoing your choices; maybe it shouldn't always be up to you. Great review!
The book had me at "alternate realities." Still, there's a very nice lesson about risk-taking here, a great thought for anyone who's paralyzed by the fear of failing.

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