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Lel Scott, Hawkeye Proofreading Services

As a proofreader and editor, I have worked on many different styles and genres of books, some fun; some instructional; some simply a ripping good read. Carne Maxwell's The Contest falls into the last category. Indeed, there were many occasions while working on the book when I quite forgot that I had a job to do and found myself racing ahead to see what happened next. There are many memorable moments between the deceptively calm beginning and the didn't-see-THAT-coming ending: Ms Maxwell has a most fertile imagination and her second book can't come quickly enough for me.








Jonathan Ward at Elements Physiotherapy

"I can’t believe you killed off ...! I’m going to need counselling now.

Honest opinion- it’s great!! To me the real stand-out aspect of the writing is the ‘pace’ that it all moves at. Which I think is largely due to the great dialogue throughout- it conveys the plot and the characters without needing a whole lot of wordy explanation. It’s really good writing and a genuinely exciting plot. I was interested right from page 1 to the end."


Heather Falkenstein reviewed Carne Maxwell Author — 5 star

July 12 at 8:33pm · 

Think live contests on TV - now in an easy to read form.
Carne Maxwell has the courage as an author to put the suspense and drama of current TV themes into the written genre. Well done.

Hayley Maxwell reviewed Carne Maxwell Author — 5 star

July 12 at 9:04pm · 

I know I might be a little bit biased as I'm her daughter, but honestly this novel was so catching and engaging that I didn't want to put it down, and that's saying a lot. It is a striving and captivating read about 10 families of contestants who have to try to remain on an island for three months. Hidden dangers begin to appear, causing the families to mistrust their morals. 
I seriously rate this novel for young adults and up.

Julia Mead reviewed Carne Maxwell Author — 5 star

July 12 at 10:02pm · 

Get ready to sit on the edge of your chair! This book had me hooked from the first page. Fast and full of action and suspense plus a little romance along the way. Can't wait for the next book.  

Christine Wildman

Sunday 23 at 5.20

A can't put down read - atmospheric and plenty of surprises along the way. Well done Carne! 🏝💰🌴🌞

Jane Kingwill

July 24 at 6:14am

Great story. couldn't put it down and read in two days. highly recommend. make a great film or tv series. congrats


Irene Kingwill

July 27

The lure of an enforced stay on an uninhabited tropical Pacific Island for one group to win the prize of a vast sum of money contested by 10 groups of people is a recipe for disaster and so it is. I found this a spellbinding book of intrigue, lies, jealousies and sadness, making for compulsive reading.  I shall certainly be recommending it to everyone I know. Thoroughly enjoyed it, well done Carne, I'm so very proud of you.

Kevin Wildman reviewed Carne Maxwell Author — 5 star
 August 9 at 3.12pm
I'm a quarter way through and loving it. This book is full of twists and turns and just when I think I know what's going to happen, surprise!

MY next agenda is to get this book to film. Here is what my proofreader/editor wrote to help me in my quest:

“The Contest” by Carne Maxwell.

I wanted to write a note to accompany this book on its travels around the world in order to recommend it most highly.

Carne came to me as a first-time author, looking for proofreading and editing help, but she needed very little of either.  The book flows wonderfully well and her skills as a storyteller seem innate.

“The Contest” contains elements of romance, sex and plain, outright horror. In fact, while there are movies that were made for the big screen that should never have been allowed, “The Contest” would, in my opinion, not only stand the test of time alongside films such as “Cape Fear”, but could possibly break some box office records, given the right cast.

From a deceptively benign beginning, the tension builds to a crashing and utterly unexpected finale, with heart-stopping and shocking moments along the way.


As a literary professional and, more importantly, as a reader, I’m eagerly awaiting Ms Maxwell’s second book, which I am certain will be every bit as enthralling as “The Contest”.


With very best wishes,

Lel Scott, Hawkeye Proofreading Services.

Jonathan Ward
‘I don’t think you need to be nervous about sending it to a production company - I think they’ll be thrilled to get a story and characters as good as this'. 

Jordayna McDowell reviewed Carne Maxwell Author — 5 star

August 25 at 2.58pm

A great read, I would highly recommend to all that love suspense, action and adventure! I loved following the different narratives that were taking place throughout the book - I often would flick back to the contestant list at the start of the book - it was exciting to see them get narrowed down one by one. Nice references to NZ culture and to read a book that's not based in an American Town/city! When's the next book coming!?

Katy Reade
Book safely received thank you - and read. A real page turner! I am not a great one for action thrillers, but once started I found it hard to put down and your characterisations were terrific.You must be so pleased. Let me know when the next one is out!  

Chris Bartels reviewed Carne Maxwell Author — 5 star

October 26 

Whilst convalescing after surgery I read my cousin Carne Maxwell’s new book called The Contest
I couldn’t put it down and I highly recommend. Awesome book Carne - If you have not read it it is a Must Read.

Also...... it would make an amazing movie

Kevin Wildman reviewed Carne Maxwell Author - 5 star
Recently I finished reading a self-published book titled “ The Contest” by my good friend Carne Maxwell, I had no idea there was an author hiding in this talented person. Initially I was drawn to it by the amazing cover which she created herself, not surprisingly as she is also a painter and graphic designer. It was hard to put this book down as I became immersed in the story of several family groups who were set down on a tropical island to compete for big money, very big money. The twists and turns are many, and the complex relationships, both within and between the families is delivered almost in the style of a script (this would make an excellent movie). This adds palpable tension to the sense of drama and adventure as the characters are fleshed out as they meet the challenges that nature and indeed, human nature sets them. Vivid descriptions of the environment trigger the imagination to the point I feel I would recognise the island if I were ever to visit it. This is a book I can thoroughly recommend as long as you can resist the urge to peek at the last page, if you can manage that you will be taken on a very absorbing adventure.

Vicky Finnigan — 5 star

December 09

A compelling read! I never knew what was coming next. 

It would make a wonderful film.

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