Monthly Archives: January 2012
Ever since I read her preview short, Intuition, I have been waiting impatiently for J Meyers to release her novel.
That day has come. Intangible is officially available on Amazon – and it is my pleasure to offer you my review.
Both Intuition and the preview of Intangible raised my expectations.
J exceeded all of them.
From the beginning, I fell hard for both Luke and Sera. They are twins, but also individuals, and I really enjoyed their relationship as brother and sister.
And the world she has created, with both dark and light, twists through the everyday, bringing unique and surprising characters into Luke and Sera’s life.
As two kids with special powers – powers they hide from everyone – each twin deals with their secret in a different way. Sera blocks herself from the possibility of friendship, aware that her gift as a healer attracts. Luke is the more outgoing – but he has a secret he can’t even tell Sera, a secret that is tearing him apart because he can’t do anything about it.
As usual, I am not going to give much away – I hate spoilers in reviews. But I am going to say that I raced through her book in less than three days, that I laughed, I cried, I was surprised, delighted, scared for the characters, and came up for air thinking that she damn well better be writing a sequel right this moment.
Now run run run those fingers right over to Amazon and snag yourself a copy. Then come back here on Thursday for an interview with J herself.
Go on – yep, I’m done here.
Until next time – read on.
I don’t normally post on Monday, but I wanted to let you all know that this week is going to be a bit different.
My friend and fellow author, J Meyers, is putting her novel, Intangible, out into the world.
The official release is tomorrow. So I am doing a bit of a change up. I will be reviewing the book tomorrow, and have an exclusive interview with J on Thursday. You can see my review of her preview short Intuition here.
I am really excited to be sharing her new book with you all – in the midst of it right now.
So come on back Tuesday for the full scoop.
See you then,
Now that I am reviewing books every week, I have spent mucho time scanning samples online.
Now I can overlook some formatting issues, but the appalling punctuation I am finding out there seriously has me bothered.
As indie authors, we have complete control over our work – our product. And like any product, it should be the absolute best you can produce, at this moment. Like any art form, the more you do it, the better you get at it. But while you’re spinning those stories out of your mind, do yourself a favor and keep them in the right framework.
Know that rule before you break it. Better yet – know all the rules. Imprint them in your head, type them up and paste them on your computer – whatever it takes to remind you that how you write is just as important as what you write.
If you don’t follow the basic rules and put that book out there with errors, your readers are going to let you know – often in the form of angry reviews. And those reviews can cost you.
Remember, the book you put out represents YOU. Now ask yourself – how do you want to be seen by future readers?
Make sure your answer is one you can live with for a long time.
Okay – rant over. Thanks for listening.
Until next time – write on, with style.
I am the first to admit it – this fantasy-lover wouldn’t seek out chick-lit. Not intentionally.
But if it is all like the fun, funny, tug-at-your-heartstrings story I am reviewing today, I am all in!
And here it is:
I was pulled in from the first paragraph, then I just fell. Author Talli Roland had me laughing, crying, and rooting for everyone in this gem of a novella.
It is a quick read – I finished in one shot, simply because I couldn’t put it down. I had to know how everything turned out.
And that is the hallmark of a well written story.
I won’t give anything away, because I want you to go and read it for yourself. You can get a copy here. I’m glad I took the chance on chick-lit – now I’m off to buy the rest of her books.
Go on – do yourself a favor and get it.
Until next time – read on
There is a particular one that every newcomer is told about: Never Never Never say the M play by Shakespeare backstage. Never.
To do so would unleash a torrent of foul luck. Storms would rage, mountains fall – at the very least, the show would be under a black cloud, and probably close opening night.
I never had the guts to invoke the curse, but I was the horrified witness when some smartass decided it was all a big joke.
I have never seen a group of people move so fast.
They forced him to turn in a circle, counterclockwise (3 or 5 times, depending on your source), then promptly booted him out of the theatre. For good. Yep – they take their superstitions seriously.
These come in all forms, from the throwing salt over one shoulder after spilling to ward off the devil behind you, to the ever popular seven years of bad luck for breaking a mirror. I haven’t tested that one, either.
But I have walked under a ladder, with no ill effects.
Have had a black cat cross my path, with no change in luck for better or worse.
Superstitions are a colorful part of our history, reaching back centuries. They are often amusing, sometimes absurd, but they stem from a deeply held belief in the supernatural among us.
In our techno-centric society, it is easy to overlook the magic as we text, tweet, and hug our iphones in anticipation. Next time you are outside, tear your eyes away from the screen, and take a look around. Stop, listen, and you just may hear your grandmother warning you not to take your holiday on a Friday, dear, don’t you know it will bring misfortune?
What are your favorite superstitions? Which ones have you ignored, to your peril? Feel free to unburden yourself here.
Until next time – keep looking over your shoulder. And throw some salt, just for good measure.
I just finished this book:
It is a prequel to her After Cilmeri series, and I am glad I read this one first.
Written in first person, with a split point of view, it is both a sweeping history and a very character focused story.
I fell in love with Wales my first trip there, and by the second trip I didn’t want to leave. During my research and while I was there I read a good bit about Llywelyn ap Gruffydd, Prince of Wales, and the love the Welsh have for him even today. And yes, I know how to pronounce his name – I’m just that much of a history geek.
This story pulls you in from the first paragraph, with Meg standing over her dead husband in a morgue. Falling back through time, she and her daughter become a part of the Prince’s world. I was literally swept back with her, into a well-developed and lush historical landscape.
I am a huge history buff, and because of that, I demand plenty from the historical fiction I read. Sarah Woodbury delivered that and more, in an approachable writing style that even the non-historian would enjoy.
I am heading over right now to get Footsteps in Time, and I can’t wait to start it!
Well, what are you waiting for? I’m history.
Until next time – read on.
Those of you who read my blog know about my, shall we say, passion for cemeteries. You can read the post here if you missed it.
The photos in that post are from the necropolis in Glasgow, Scotland, which spreads itself over a hill just above Glasgow Cathedral. I am going to share another photo with you in a moment.
But first, a little exposition.
I climbed the hill to the necropolis on a cold, still May morning, stopping to take a photo of an interesting headstone. I was alone when I reached the top of the hill, alone in the city of the dead.
It was silent, an eerie silence, with low hanging clouds, and a murder of crows roosting on a long hedge just behind me.
Walking around, I took a few photos – very few. I felt as if I were intruding.
I returned to that hedge, looking at the stone monuments to death, when a breathless voice whispered in my ear. A female voice, speaking the lyrical Gaelic I had been hearing since my arrival in Glasgow.
I spun, and the cold presence whirled away from me as if it were dancing.
A second later, the crows flew up, cawing wildly, into the still, silent sky.
I took a fast walk back down the hill, cooled my heels and my hammering heart in the cathedral a good long while.
When I returned home, I processed the photos, and began to look through them. The single shot I took of a random headstone grabbed my attention.
And it has grabbed attention ever since. Everyone I show it to has seen – something, in the photo. Something that wasn’t there when I took it on that cold day.
Now it’s your turn:
What do you see in the photo?
Until next time – keep looking over your shoulder.
Death Whispers, by Tamara Rose Blodgett, caught my attention as I was browsing the children’s/YA section. The premise sounded intriguing – children being innoculated to heighten paranormal abilities – and the title captured my interest.
Fist off, this book is like living inside the head of a teenage boy. I have four nephews, so I pretty much felt at home. Reading Tamara’s bio, I was not surprised to learn she has teenage boys.
Caleb Hart, the narrator and center of the story, is a smart, sometimes mouthy, typical teenager. His friends John and Jonesy are funny and extemely likeable.
Just a note here – the rhythm of this book is a bit different, especially if you are not used to what I call teen speak – half sentences, random thoughts, and smart ass comments boucing around in his head. Quite the ride, and it can take a bit to get used to. My advice – hang on, because it is an enjoyable ride.
Caleb discovers in an incredibly embarrassing way just what his paranormal bent is: Affinity for the Dead, or AFTD. He can hear them speak, feel them, and finds he has other abilities as well. The kind that can land him in a secret government facility, never to be seen or heard of again. Just like the only other AFTD with his level of ability.
He is a normal teenager, suddenly living an abnormal life. I really like the way you are slowly but completely sucked into his world, rooting for him as he fumbles and fights his way through to the truth of who he is.
And he is not alone. Along with his friends, he assembles a team, who learn to trust and watch out for each other. The twists and surprises, all edged with a growing tension, lead you deeper, reading faster to find out what happens next. I literally raced through the last fifty pages.
My verdict – go buy a copy. You can do that here, or visit her website to check it out, along with the rest of the books in the series. Book 3 – Death Screams, was just released, in time for Friday the 13th.
I am off to buy book 2 myself, so I’ll meet you back here.
Until then – read on.
Oh, yes – it’s that time. Again.
Time to unearth the various exercise machines.
Time to start the new diet.
Time to write out the resolutions.
I go through the same angst every new year. And by February, sometimes sooner, those good intentions have become nasty little regrets, tapping on my shoulder.
This year, I’m not making resolutions.
Instead, I’m writing out my goals. Yep – goals.
Positive, concrete, can-make-a-to-do-list goals.
I already feel lighter.
So what are your goals for this year? Have you mapped out where you are headed with your writing career?
I found some fabulous posts that offer advice for any goal you could possibly want to achieve – plus some laughs along the way. I’m going to put you in their capable hands, and wish you all the best writing year yet!
Let Jim Devitt’s list of goals inspire your own.
Larry Brooks inspired Jim’s post – and inspired me.
Kristen Lamb and the silliness of the New Year’s resolutions we make.
The Girls with Pens help you break down your goals, with a little SMART.
The Creative Penn – her goals, and a good blueprint for creating your own.
Another Kristen Lamb contribution – read this one and just do it!
Until next time – write on.