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Rosaria of Venice (The Renaissance of Rosaria Adalberto) (Volume 1) Paperback – June 14, 2014
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About the Author
Aaron M. Miner is a writer, filmmaker and entrepreneur living in Sunnyvale, CA. In 2012 he founded Studio Kenaz LLC, a small indie animation studio. That same year he produced and directed the studio’s first project: an animated music video promoting Murs’s and Josh Blaylock’s comic book/concept album collaboration, Yumiko: Curse of the Merch Girl. In order to better focus on completing his Bachelor’s degree at Cogswell College, Aaron added a publishing imprint to Studio Kenaz, Gebobooks Publishing, through which this book is published. While writing Rosaria of Venice, he was awarded the 2013 Kevin Smokler scholarship to attend the annual San Francisco Writer’s Conference. While Rosaria of Venice is his first novel, he has written several short stories, some of which are available online via his website, Runicfire.net. In his free moments, he sometimes dreams of adopting a Bengal cat.
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Top customer reviews
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Miner's writing is well paced, quirky, highly visual, nicely detailed, nuanced and energetic. I never found myself loosing interest, due to his development of a strong female protagonist and her struggles to battle an array of cultural, familial, and sinister forces while simultaneously seeking to unlock the mysteries of advanced (otherworldly? futuristic?) technologies. Oh, and did I mention love, loyalty, lust, betrayal, evil religious forces, and effective dollops of humor? He quietly and effectively lays out a steam punk renaissance world that is rather easy to accept.
To be honest, the book probably and technically deserves a four star rating. Some themes and subplots are emphasized a tad much. As a previous reviewer mentioned, several characters are not fully developed, but like many episodic shows or books, I believe Miner will flesh out these characters and the larger societal forces in future installments.
I gave a five star rating on the grounds of "shear audacity of scope" as to where this plot could be headed. If Aaron can pull this off, he will have a bright and successful career ahead of himself. And quite frankly, for the price, you'd be a fool not to get a copy.
Hey, you can say you were introduced to Miner "in his early years".
Rosaria basically goes from "I think there's a relationship between electricity and magnetism" to "There is relation between them; here it is, and here's the speed of light which I didn't even know was related to them until just now. Oh, and by the way, light exhibits wave-like properties." all in a single flash of intuition. Seriously, that was like three centuries worth of scientific inquiry condensed into that train of thought. Up until that point, she was depicted as smart but not that smart. Also, Irene's possession came out of no where. The closest thing in the story to magic or mysticism had been the cube, which is arguably just sufficiently advanced technology.
The author sets the stage well and has an enthralling way of setting the scene. Aaron Miner is not afraid to throw twists into the story to keep the reader guessing, using existing storytelling tropes to misdirect the reader's expectations. From swordplay to leaps in innovation, Rosaria of Venice has displayed a unique perspective on a strong female lead in the role of the steampunk-renaissance that kept me entertained from start to finish.
CON: There are times where characters, particularly the antagonist(s) are not fleshed out and are motivated by actions beyond what is revealed to the reader; in other words, the villain is evil for evil's sake. I'll be interested to see if in future novels based in this world reveal foreshadowing I missed in my first read, but otherwise I feel some fleshing out may be missing from the antagonist's viewpoint. Hence the missing star.
WOULD RECOMMEND, 4/5