Tag Archives: book review

The Hat: a book review

My Sunday Book Review for C.S. Boyack’s – The Hat. This little book was a fun escape read, and although not in my usual genre of reading, I found it quite delightful. Keep reading here.

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Review: Voyage of the Lanternfish

Run over to Michele’s place and check out what she had to say about Lanternfish. She’s a very supportive author and blogger, so check out her site while you’re there.

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I love a good pirate book—who doesn’t. So when Mr. Boyack, one of my go to authors, wrote one, I knew I had to read it. Boyack didn’t disappoint. Voyage of the Lanternfish had it all, and more. His characters were well-written and charismatic, and his plot was well developed. He has a way of creating unusual characters and giving them personality. Keep reading here…

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That’s a wrap

It was a very productive weekend for me. It didn’t involve any new fiction, but I got a lot done. For three days I worked on interviews for Lisa Burton Radio. I never got them all done either, but I did all I could.

I should be able to move everyone to the next level next weekend. Some of these people have been waiting a long time. I can maintain my schedule without putting all this effort in right now. A couple per week keeps the line moving. However, I’m not patient at all, and don’t want people to think I’ve forgotten them. I shouldn’t expect my guest authors to be patient either.

As far as scheduling goes, if everyone returns the stuff I sent out this weekend, I can schedule interviews through June. I’m trading one logjam for another one, but at least folks will know something is happening.

That’s the funny thing about this slot. It’s feast or famine. It’s entirely possible that sometime in August I’ll be out of authors seeking promotion. It would be great if they would tickle in about one per week. They never do.

Still, it was very productive. I also finished reading a book. I started it on the way home from NOLA, and read 7/8 of it then. A two week gap, forced me to read back a bit, but I finished it. I also wrote a very short review.

Reviews don’t have to be long. A few lines about whether you liked the book, or not, and why, is all it takes. Think about this if you’ve finished a book lately. The review counts, it’s tallied based upon how many stars you gave it, and nobody expects a lengthy book report. These reviews mean a lot to the author.

I found some things on Pinterest and saved them to my Piracy board. I’d love to write about them, but it might take a couple weeks before they hit my story. These involve sea monsters and the like. I’m excited about them, but they will have to wait their turn.

If I can get the rest of the interviews on my flex day, I might get to new fiction on Saturday. Fingers crossed.

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More great news for The Hat

The Hat is a delightfully fun, whimsical fantasy with overtones of chick lit and Disney magic. As a novella, it is a fast, fast read, and I was disappointed when I came to the end.

Lizzie St. Laurent is a 21-year-old college dropout who is having a difficult time following the loss of her grandmother, whom she loved and with whom she lived. She moved to an apartment, but her roommate abandoned her, and now she is working multiple jobs just to make ends meet. Her uncle is in control of her grandmothers’ estate, and when she visits her grandmother’s house in the hopes of having something by which to remember her, she finds everything boxed up and on a moving truck. In frustration, she snatches a box from the truck and brings it home.

Read more at Noelle’s blog.

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A new venue for authors

As authors, we are always looking for new ways to reach our readers. I was contacted by these two lovely ladies, through friends made on Lisa Burton Radio, to promote their startup on YouTube. Check out what they have to offer, and there are some pretty decent prizes available here too.

CraftQuest 2018 Launch

Co-Founders: Maria Tureaud & Ari Augustine

Motto: We are warriors of the written word.

This month, Maria Tureaud and I are launching CraftQuest, a LIVE YouTube webinar series for serious writers. We wanted to create the equivalent of The View for seriously determined writers willing to transform their failures into successes and want to “get shit done”.

Each month, CraftQuest will host between five to ten writers to chat about their unique writing lives, creative processes, and lessons learn from rejections. We will share tips, perform open critiques, and collaborate with other humans who want to improve their works in progress.

At its heart, CraftQuest is mostly about making connections with writers who understand how terrifyingly maddening writing can be and recognize the value and beauty each writer brings to the table as a literary artist.

We will pull the curtain back to reveal what it really takes to write a book.From the pre-research stage to the querying phase, we delve into our fears, lay bare our failures, discuss our projects, and shed light on the realities of writing life. CraftQuest is a place for us to use our bruises, cuts, and scrapes as weapons of motivation, and to address the flaws of our work in a constructive manner.

At CraftQuest, we are a “revolution of writers.” We share our passion, hunger, and drive to create the best versions of our work for publishing. We believe that together we are empowered to create fearlessly, encouraged to write authentically, and embraced for the uniqueness we bring to the publishing industry.

Episode one: The Art Of Making It All Up airs February 24th, 2018 at 5:00 pm EST.  Our guest speakers include: Vivien Reis, author/writertuber, and Justine Manzano and Megan Manzano from The Inkwell Council.

To kick off our launch, Maria is giving away three first pages critiques. I’ll be giving away one FREE download of Scrivener in February, March, and April. All entrants into the giveaways must be followers of our CraftQuest YouTube channel and our Twitter profile.

Maria Tureaud bio: 

Maria is one half Tolkien, one half Captain Kirk. She began writing fan fiction in high school, and hasn’t looked back since. With a passion for history, fantasy, romance, and sci-fi, she likes her heroes tough, and her heroines tougher. Blogger, Tweeter, and Writetuber, Maria is a co-founder of CraftQuest — writers helping writers. With a penchant for query writing, she strives to break down the doors, change the conversation, and hammer home the truth: a writer’s craft level determines their level of success. They are their own gatekeepers.

 

Ari Augustine bio:

Ari Augustine is an ENFP Type A personality who works as a freelance writer in Seattle, Washington. As a wearer of many hats, she graduated in 2017 with a degree in Science and is actively pursuing an English Literature degree alongside a certification in editing. In her spare time, Ari created Ravenous for Reads, a blog dedicated to the lifestyle of book lovers, and in 2018, she became co-founder of CraftQuest, a webinar series created to discuss the turbulent nature of writing. After growing up in foster care and struggling with Anxiety, she believes in taking risks and passionately diving into the art of writing. After all, life is too damn short to be doing anything, but the one thing that brings you happiness.

Social media links:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/writecraftquest

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZMncuN-YLU-vsTySyQuBYA

Maria’s twitter – https://twitter.com/Maria_Tureaud

Ari’s twitter –  https://twitter.com/SouffleLumiere

Ari’s blog: http://www.ravenousforreads.com

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The Hat strikes again

Karen O. delivered this wonderful review of The Hat today. Stop over at Karen’s place to check it out. She’s a voracious reader who reviews the books she reads. She’s absolutely someone all authors should get to know. Karen also writes, and you might want to check out In A Small Compass too.

The author sent me an ARC of this book (mobi format) in exchange for an honest review (member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).

My rating:      *****

Plot
(by Goodreads)

Lizzie St. Laurent is dealing with many of the struggles of young life. She lost her grandmother, and her living arrangements. Her new roommate abandoned her, and she’s working multiple jobs just to keep her head above water. Keep Reading here…

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A quick update

The launch for The Hat is going well. Books are selling, and reviews are starting to come in too. It’s a short read, so that helps speed the reviews along. Everyone seems to be enjoying it so far. I got up in the neighborhood of 140 on Amazon’s superhero list, but it’s dropped back now. I decided not to take a screen shot until I hit double digits. The algorithms are strange in that if I sell 10 copies in one hour, the numbers will soar. If I sell those same ten books in one day, they don’t budge at all. Algorithms are fickle.

This is a good reason to hold a pre-sale. All of the advance sales will download at once and stack the deck for an hour or two. It wasn’t that big of a deal to me so I didn’t this time. If it matters to you, it’s a decent trick.

It seems like a lot of people are releasing books right now. I’ve hosted several of them here, and will host several more. This is one of the great things about the author community. We all try to help each other.

There are some traffic jams going on, and I decided to be the one to deal with it. It isn’t fair to ask someone to host me, then dictate when they can post something. I basically have traffic jams every day this week, but I have a plan. I will let my guest have the spotlight here during the day, then reblog content from my tour after 5:00.

You may ask why I’m reblogging at all, and that’s a fair question. My followers already know I released a book, they have a reasonable idea of what it’s about, and whether they might want to read it. Here’s the deal, and it matters to me: I have a lot of followers, and I want to send you guys to visit the folks that are helping me.

As an author, or even an editor, cover designer, or formatter, you need to know a few people to help spread the word. These folks supporting me this week, might be willing to support other author friends in the future. This is your chance to meet some cool people who support authors. I encourage you to visit them and follow their blogs. Leave a comment, introduce yourself, and make a friend in the business.

Harmony Kent is one of my partners over at Story Empire. She shared her review of The Hat on her own blog today. I’d appreciate it if you guys would send her a little traffic and help her blog grow. She’s a nice lady, a great author, and does a little editing herself. In other words, a good friend to make. Here is the link: Harmony Kent.

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A Wonderful Review

craig

Please head over to Carmen’s and check out her wonderful review of one of my favorites.

Will O’ the Wisp is the story of a teenage girl, Patty Hall, told in the first person POV. I haven’t read any story with such a young main character and was curious about this one. As I read other books by Craig Boyack I hoped it wouldn’t disappoint me. And it didn’t. Read more here

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Book review for Panama

Ethan and Coop are sent to the construction zone along the Panama Canal. They have some experience with strange phenomenon, but nothing prepared them for this.

They are faced with civil war, Carlist pretenders to the thrones of France and Spain, an invading Spanish army, and another from Hell itself. They'll be lucky to survive, let alone take care of anything while they're down there.

This story is based upon the construction of the canal, Panamanian independence, international cooperation, and a few celebrity cameos. Even the magic takes on an international flavor…

Read more on Carmen Stefanescu's Blog

 

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Another wonderful review

Carmen Stefanescu posted a wonderful review for my second Experimental Notebook today. Check out what she has to say:

My Review

The Experimental Notebook has some hair raising stories! The creep factor is way up there as well. Fascinating and sometimes chilling, the author created enough variety here to hook people of every interest as there are paranormal stories, horror/macabre and even sci-fi. 

The storytelling is generally well paced and flows nicely. My attention was held by the author’s highly imaginative, well-written and captivating short stories…and so was my imagination.

Read more here

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