A Tale of Two Books

A two for one book review! Along with a discussion on what not to do in a paranormal romance.

 

On the update side, working on a new steampunk project and trying to still work out plot issues with VH. It’s always lovely when your villain can’t get his act together to bother the protagonists.

 

Anyway, struggles with writing leads to reading and I ended up with a few new books. I was initially going for Marshall Ryan Maresca’s new book The Holver Alley Gang, but the first bookstore I visited didn’t have it. But I ended up seeing this: God Save The Queen by Kate Locke. A long wait a few days later had me downloading Clean Sweep by Ilona Andrews.

 

The last two basically became a study in opposites and are the focus of today’s review.

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Quarterday Imbolc 2017

2 posts in as many days? Shocking!

Quarterday has released its Imbolc 2017 edition. We have a fine selection of poetry this go around for you to enjoy; even one of my poems made it in! 

The fact that my fellow staff likes my poetry still surprises me, though, given my difficulties with the form through high school and college.
To pass along an announcement, Quarterday will only be doing two publications this year (this issue is technically the last of last year’s cycle). We are still taking poems, but it might be longer before you see yourself in print via us.

Blog Book Round-up

Ugh. It’s been two months since I’ve touched this thing.

Sorry guys. I’m sporadic, but didn’t mean to be this sporadic.

Current state of writing: working on a new short story for the next anthology (more info upcoming as we get closer to whatever deadline we set, but do know that we’re working towards another), and still struggling with plot details on VH. I’m about to just start throwing things on paper and seeing what sticks XD

Over the winter holidays I read a bunch of different things (when not distracted by illnesses and a new game system <3), and I kept meaning to write up full reviews, but I don’t think I’m ever going to sit down for full-length ones at this point. Too much distance. And some will probably get touched on again as I continue the series. So here’s a real quick round-up of some of the things I picked up and what I thought:

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Book Review: The Laundry Files series

It’s been a hard couple of weeks. Been dealing with a toddler milestone (which is going successfully, thank goodness, but is very disruptive), election year, the end of daylight savings, Ubergroup trades, and just a general bad headspace.

I’ve gotten no real work done on my novel. Blah. I’m probably going to fail NaNo again. But that’s okay. As long as I get some more writing in, it’ll be a win, yeah?

But! I needed a mental break. And a chance double encounter between a Reddit thread and a Humble Bundle offer introduced me to a new series: The Laundry Files.

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Book Review: Celtic Moon by Jan DeLima

So state of things: still working on my novel, but hitting a funk; trying to work on blog posts for the Fable Online; there was a small hiccup in the formatting of Volume II, but it should be on the way soon; oh, and I’m working on a poem for some crazy reason. We’ll see if I end up doing anything with it.

But even with all of that, I needed to take a break and do some reading. Seeing as my job is near the main library (w00t!), I decided to head down there and find something to read.

Now, one of the things I do like doing as a writer is grab things that aren’t necessarily in my precise writing genre but still fit within the larger genre/sub-genre mold I’m going for. Basically, since I write romantic fantasy (or romantasy) in a spec-fic/urban fiction specific way, I like going for romantic fantasy that’s rural or epic. I want to see how others work with the tropes, but don’t want to steal plot ideas, you know?

Reason why this is important is because I went directly to new fantasy paperbacks section in the library. And found this:

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Looked pretty neat. The blurb intrigued me too:

For centuries, Cormack has lived between worlds—a man trapped in the body of a wolf, shunned by humans and shifters alike. Only one person has ever welcomed his company: Elen, a kindred outcast who is feared by others of her ancient Celtic race for her strange healing abilities. Cormack has always valued Elen’s kindness and understanding, but after a desperate act of friendship causes Elen to free him from his curse, he realizes he wants more. He wants all of her—completely and forever.

Except before Cormack can win Elen’s heart, Pendaran, the evil leader of the Guardians, captures her, determined to manipulate her incredible power to aid him in his twisted war against the shapeshifting tribes. Now Cormack must use all of his skills as a warrior and a wolf to save the woman he loves—before Pendaran’s vile schemes destroy them all…

Okay. So probably a bit more romantic than I was going for, but it sounds pretty epic here.

But. It’s not the first book of the series. And I’m one of those that has to read the rest of the series. I hate picking up in the middle. But hey! The library has the rest of the series.

…it’s here that I must confess my own idiocy. So taken was I of that first blurb, for book three, that I didn’t look at the blurbs for the rest of the series. That probably would have saved me a lot of headache here.

Which is how I ended up reading this:

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New Release: Steampunk Fairy Tales

We’re live with the anthology! I’ll let Angela Castillo, the project’s fearless leader, give you the info:

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Drum roll PLEASE!!! We are thrilled to announce you can now upload Steampunk Fairy Tales on Smashwords for any platform for free here: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/625579,
and for 99 cents from Amazon Kindle, if you prefer that format: http://www.amazon.com/Steampunk-Fairy-Tales-L…/…/ref=sr_1_2…
Sorry about the price difference, we are still working on getting the Kindle book free but it may be a few weeks. But it’s worth 99 cents! We would absolutely love your opinion of our book, if you could please leave us an honest review it would be lovely. Hope you enjoy!

 

And the blurb:

A toyshop owner builds a set of magic clockwork dolls that delight a factory town. A three-inch tall samurai faces a giant iron ogre with only a sewing needle and a coin. A scientist seeks an antidote to his formula gone wrong, with the help of his partner’s beautiful daughter.

All of these stories and more are included in Steampunk Fairy Tales. Written by authors from three different continents, every enchanting tale combines the futuristic Victorian concept of steam and fashion with memorable stories, from the recognizable “Jack and the Beanstalk”, to other popular and unfamiliar works from Germany, France, Italy and Japan.

With steam driven gadgets such as mechanical goggles, hoverboards, and an orchestra of automatons. Steampunk Fairy Tales is a charming and unique collection of works for current lovers of the genre, and those just diving in. 

Book Review: Killing Pretty

My next post’ll be about writing stuff. But right now, I have a stack of books I have to finish before November, otherwise I won’t be able to read them until December, and they’re library books.

So I’m reading.

indexA note about today’s selection. It’s the seventh book of a favorite series of mine. I will try to limit spoilers about the previous books, but I can’t avoid them entirely. Fair warning.

So as a quick, completely spoiler free, recommendation: love the series, particularly the first six books, so you should check them out, but this one feels like a letdown after the previous book. I’d wait to read it after the next book releases, assuming there is a next book.

Book’s blurb follows the break.

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