#BookReview – where the magic is by Giselle Green #romance

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been sharing with you parts of my adventures in Edinburgh with my author-friend Giselle.

Today I am reviewing her latest book, and posing the question: if you had a successful career as a traditionally published author, what would make you indie publish your latest novel?

Where the magic is, delves into questions about what price a character is prepared to pay, to follow her conscience and her heart?

Strangely, this echoes the choice Giselle had to make when deciding how to publish this book. Her publisher wasn’t keen on the choice of profession for the lead male character, Cal, and asked for this to be changed. Giselle disagreed and kept the novel as she’d planned and written it. With 7 traditionally published and well-reviewed novels under her belt, Giselle decided to stick to her guns, and publish the novel herself.

What I’d be really interested in, is your opinion on the sticking point.

Here is my review of ‘Where the Magic is’.

Where the Magic IsWhere the Magic Is by Giselle Green
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

In Rio, Sofia’s set to marry the wealthy man of her dreams, and yet she’s still experiencing qualms. The wedding is rushing towards her, but her attention is not fully where both their families believe it should be. Rather, she is focussed on the unfolding tragedy of her daughter Ida’s failing sight.
In the UK, former Scottish soldier turned male escort, Cal, bumps into an old army friend who’s struggling with his health. Before he knows it, Cal’s agreed to help out by taking on some of his friend’s tour guide work, even knowing his decision will upset his rather possessive boss, who fancies there might be more between her and Cal than he wants.
When the chance comes for Ida to potentially receive experimental treatment that might save her sight, despite her impending nuptials Sofia seizes the slim hope and arranges to fly Ida to London. While waiting for test results, everyone agrees Ida should be taken on a trip to the place she desires to visit the most – the Scottish Highlands – to store up memories in case these are the final places she will see.
Back in Rio, Sofia’s fiancé, a man accustomed to arranging things exactly how he wants them, books them a tour guide – an older, reliable man whom Sofia can be entrusted with. Little do any of them know that, unknown to the tour company, there has been a change of guide….
Beautifully written, Green has a talent for drawing scenery you can almost smell, and characters who go straight for your heart. You can’t help but wonder how the story threads will pan out, even though with a romance tag, you can be sure that love will eventually conquer all.
Entwined in the slow-burn romance are themes of being true to oneself, and facing decisions on how far you are willing to compromise your own happiness for the sake of others. I must admit, I felt sorry for the consequences that Sofia’s decisions have on her impoverished family, while rooting for her to make those same choices – very real-world dilemmas.
The sections in Scotland held only one issue for me – the author’s geography is somewhat inaccurate, but that will probably only leap out at someone like me, who actually lives in the Highlands. The parts that do take place in the Highlands evoke the truly breath-taking beauty and romance of the region, which works its quiet magic to bring events to a head.
If you are captivated by the beautiful, magical grandeur of the Scottish Highlands, and a believer in true love, then this gentle romance is an ideal book for you.

View all my reviews

If you are minded to have a read, I’d be really interested in your take on Cal’s profession. It worked for me, but it would be interesting to find out if the publisher’s editor was right, and it does put some people off.

You can find it on Amazon HERE.


  1. I would be delighted to be a successful traditionally published author, but as an Indie author I would not want anyone telling me to change my book – so I would go ahead on
    my own.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That; was my opinion too, thanks for sharing yours.


  2. Call’s profession wouldn’t put me off. A lot comes down to how his character and job is portrayed. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Debby 💕🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Harmony. I have the feeling this is going to be most people’s answer, but you never know…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This book sounds great. Changing his profession would totally change the story. la she stuck to her guns. I wish her the best of luck with this book.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, that was Giselle’s feeling. I’m glad she stuck to her guns as I really enjoyed the book just as it is.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Excellent review, Deborah. Giselle’s book sounds like a wonderful read. I’m glad she chose to publish the book herself. Our characters are complete people, and their choice of profession is part of their personalities and what makes them who they are. We can’t simply change that on a whim or cram them into a marketing box. Part of Giselle’s success is probably because her characters feel authentically themselves. 🙂 Best of luck to her on her new book!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I feel the same way about choosing a character’s profession, it makes such a large part of who they are. Call would have been a completely different character if he’d been in a different line of work.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Debby! Thanks to you for putting this out there (also the great review) and also to everyone who’s kindly commented up here. Harmony’s observation that ‘it depends how his character and his profession is portrayed’ is very much how I felt about it. From the reviews, I can tell he’s being seen the lovely, likeable (sexy) hero I meant him to be. There’s no question those publishers can really push a book out there with tools that indies don’t always have, but it wasn’t a tough call to make – it’s the book I wanted to write. D. Wallace (like the Wallace connection in the story!) makes a great point that we can’t ‘cram (our characters) into a marketing box.’ They are real people to us. My choice for Cal’s profession was in no way accidental. Thanks everyone for your good wishes xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So glad you liked the review ☺️, and I’m seeing what I expected – a resounding confirmation that you chose right for this book. I’m prepared to accept that the odd (and I do mean, ‘odd’!) person might be put off by a hero working as an escort, but I’m getting the back up here that so far, we all think your editor was wrong!


  6. I’m with Giselle sticking with her convictions, I’d have self published too. Congrats on what looks a beautiful read. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for weighing in, I have no doubt Giselle took the right path with this book, she’s just struggling with promoting it, but then, we all have that challenge, don’t we?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Understatement. Welcome to the club Giselle. 🙂 x

        Liked by 1 person

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