Reviews For City Of The Dead

At SpoCon 2018, I had a fellow panelist who turned to me after the discussion and said "By the way, I loved City of the Dead." Which was very kind and thrilling to hear. It's been a few years since the book came out, paperbacks have definitely moved into the used books only market (ebook and audio still available new and paying an author a royalty!). But I'm still inordinately fond of these characters and always pleased to meet someone who enjoyed wandering around the graveyard with them.

So here's a reprint of an article  I wrote for Red Room about reviews, reader feedback, and what I learned about character names. Again, thank you to everyone who enjoyed the topiary dragon!

City Of The Dead Giggles

The reviews are starting to arrive for City of the Dead and they are just plain fun or even funny. Which is good, as the book was meant to be a romp.  One kind reader sent me a note just today that he had to kick his wife out of the bedroom last night.  She'd borrowed his copy of City and was giggling too much for him to sleep. 

But the best compliment of all?  A friend told me that he'd lent his copy to a 13-year-old daughter of an acquantance.  "We went out to dinner and she wouldn't put down the book," he said.  Hey, if I can capture her imagination, then I've done my job!  

And another thing I've learned from reader comments: don't get too fancy with names. The flavor of the book, set in a graveyard in a fantastical city called Waterdeep, led me to give my heroine a number of uncles with odd (although related names) like Judicious and Sagacious.  It gave my spellchecker fits while I was writing and apparently a few of my readers fits too.  Fair enough.  I'll go back to simpler names in future novels -- unless I think of something or someone who needs a complicated name!

So here's some of my favorite quotes from reviews so far:
"If you're a fan of fantasy fiction and have, know, are, or have ever been a teen girl, this should be on your shelf. If you like a fun story masterfully told, that goes double."
Nathan Crowder, author of the Manual de la Vega mysteries, on

"The City of the Dead holds more fun than a clan of mischievous kobolds poking sticks at a Gold Dragon's bum whilst clamouring in uncharacteristically plucky fashion 'you're not that tough bullion boy!' A great addition to the Forgotten Realms library!"
Paul Billinghurst, "Shadowaxe" (The Dark Fortress, UK) on

"Rosemary Jones is rapidly becoming a writer to seek out...Her tale of an ordinary young woman seeking her family's best interests is exciting and out of the ordinary and I highly recommend City of the Dead to both long-time Forgotten Realms fans and newcomers alike."
John Ottinger, Grasping the Wind

"None of the descriptions I've read about Rosemary Jones' book City of the Dead really do it justice or prepare you for the story within. While some, like the back of the book cover, are technically correct, they just don't impart the lighthearted yet multi-layered feel of the book."
W. Robinson Mason, World of Hadanus

"Worth reading if you like magic and heroes and want the white knight to be female. And believable."

And a great "I'm not sure what this book is, but I like it" review at Barnes & Noble.

"Like plenty of other books where pure brute force and show of arms saves the day, this book does not have it so...well, entirely. There is action, don't get me wrong, but the story itself does not require it in heavy doses. I enjoyed this book quite well, and I recommend it for a short thrill. Also, the writing is superb compared to most other Forgotten Realms books."
Sekhemkhet, Barnes & Noble


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