From the Eyes of a Juror

Rated 2.50/5 based on 2 reviews
One murder. If there's a moral to this story it's simply the fact that all it takes is one murder to alter the lives of so many. And as you too will come to find, the aftermath of this tale, based on truths both universal and particular, will leave all who cross its path devastated and left alone to ponder the consequences which are all too often unleashed by our own misguided choices in life. More
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About Frank Terranova

I am a lifelong resident of the Boston Massachusetts area and a graduate of Boston State College…and despite the long, cold winters, I love living in New England and appreciate all that it has to offer!

By day I am employed as a computer programmer/analyst, which to a certain degree, allows me tap into my artistic side, but I have always been drawn to truly creative hobbies such as music and writing. I took up the guitar when I was in college and became proficient enough to play lead guitar in band which my friends and I put together (typical three-chord garage rock but we had a lot of fun!). At around that same time I began writing songs, lyrics, and poetry, and came up with a few very catchy songs which were well received by our audiences. Also while I was in college I took a couple of creative writing classes, mainly to satisfy my English prerequisites, and much to my surprise a few of my short stories won heaps of praise from my professors who encouraged me to consider a career as a writer…but I must admit that at that time I was much more interested in my rock & roll band (and I will also be the first to admit that I would never have had the patience to write a full length novel when I was in my 20’s).

As the years went by I decided that at some point I wanted to take a crack at writing a novel but I could never quite find the motivation necessary to make that type of a commitment. However, that all changed when I was selected to serve as a juror on a sensational murder trial which was featured on both 20/20 and Dateline NBC. I took volumes of notes during the trial (both in the courtroom and when I got home at night), mainly as a therapeutic device to assist me in sorting out my many nagging uncertainties regarding the verdict more than anything else. But what started out as an aimless attempt at reconciling my inner thoughts with the decision of my peers soon morphed into a labor of love and a stream of consciousness look at my own life, for the unfortunate victim had much in common with me.

The end result of this journey culminated in the realization of my first novel entitled “From the Eyes of a Juror”; a true crime, murder/mystery which combines courtroom drama from the perspective of a cynical juror, along with an eerie set of circumstances which the enigmatic protagonist finds himself struggling to decipher.

To be clear, I am not a professional writer by trade so please be kind with your criticisms! On the other hand, I will take all comments into consideration as I continue to work to refine my craft. I plead guilty to one particular critique regarding my use of repetitive phrases (which I think is a carryover from my songwriting days where repeating portions of a lyric can make for a very catchy tune!).

In any event, I thoroughly enjoyed writing my first book and I have many more ideas which I believe would be quite compelling so I don’t think I can stop now. Unfortunately, I have found writing to be a very time-consuming venture and it is difficult to carve out the time to make much headway so my output will probably be limited in the near term to some short stories and hopefully another novel or two somewhere down the line. If nothing else, this will be a great hobby for me to pursue when I retire from the day job!

In conclusion, to whoever might be out there in cyberspace reading this bio, I thank you very much for your time and your thoughtful consideration!

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Reviews

Review by: read more on Sep. 14, 2013 :
Seemed like a interesting plot & perhaps it is . The minute detail soon became to boring, side details that drove me away .
(review of free book)
Review by: Dean Thompson on Dec. 5, 2012 :
Overall a great story, but suffers from some aspects of the writing style. Were it not for these I would have rated it 4 stars at least.

At the very beginning of the book I felt that the author was artificially making extra long sentences, connecting clauses together with commas, seemingly suggesting that short sentences aren't what a good writer produces, making the prose uncomfortable to read, this sencence being an example of the style. Luckily either I got used to it, or more likely that was actually forced and the author eventually settled back to his normal style. However this wasn't my major gripe. No, there is probablt a name for the mechanis, but the author loved repetitive sentences. Often, to make a point, he would write multiple sencences starting with the same phrase, as in the following example from p442
Of course whether everything was truly going th be alright...
Whether everything was truly going to be alright perhaps in the end depends...
Whether everything was truly going to be alright perhaps in the end...
Whether everything was truly going to be alright perhaps in the end...

Or in the following example (from p833)
Newlan realized it...
{new chapter]
Newlan also recognized the fact ... [cliche].
He appreciated the old adage... [another cliche].
He was quite cognizant of the fact... [another cliche].
He understood better than anyone... [another cliche].
He was well aware... [another cliche].
[end of chapter]

Now in some circumstances this is probably a perfectly valid way of emplasising a point, but I would estimate that the mechanism is [over]used 50+ times in the book, so much so that about the middle it almost made me give up, but by that time I was hooked on the "whodunnit" nature of the story and had to continue - but with more skipping of sections when I saw yet another example of this annoying repetition.

Apart from this cmplaint the editing seemed quite good. There were a couple of sentences that didn't make sense and seemed to be missing a keyword, but probably less than 5 instances, and similarly some but very few instances of incorrect words (to instead of too for instance).

Other aspects of the writing I did enjoy, such as the occasional chatty note directed at "the dear reader".
(review of free book)
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