Sunday, September 16, 2018

Reading and Writing Wrap-Up: August

Once again my monthly wrap-up post is late. But, I'm glad to say that I'm reading a little more consistently, writing more, and have even gotten through some beta critiques on Unraveling in the Night. It's still been a little slow going, but I'm working to revise some of the ways I used to do things to be more efficient.

Whether you're a writer or just a reader you know that there are times when you have to make time for the things you love, aka: books, and I think I've been doing a little better at that lately.



READING:

Books Reviewed in August:

I finished Spark of Fire by Grace Anthony. This was definitely a worthwhile read. It was fun and fast-paced and it's a YA book that I think would appeal to younger readers. This book was a part of my #IndieBookGoal2018 pledge.

Books Read in August:

I started Lost Wages of Sin by Rosalie Stanton, and I'm definitely sucked in. Definitely, an adult read, but it hasn't delved into erotica territory so I'm happy with it so far. A little more crude language than I'm used to, especially after just finishing a YA read, but the plot is solid and I'm in love with the characters.

Books to read in September:

I will be finishing Lost Wages of Sin, and despite being crazy busy I should be able to start one more before the end of the month. Not sure what I'll pick yet. Since I'm super behind on my #IndieBookGoal2018 pledge it should probably be another Indie Pledge Book.



WRITING:

Unraveling in the Night (Book 2 in the Cereus Vampire Chronicles) is finally on Scribophile and I've been getting feedback from betas!



BLOGGING:

Bah, when did blogging become so hard!? I know my posts have been fewer, farther between and less consistent. I've been considering revamping what I post about and when to get into a new routine. So, stay tuned for that.

I do have an update on the  #IndieBookGoal2018 pledge. I haven't updated the list in a few months, but will be doing so today! If any of you have pledged to read Indie Books this year, I'd love to hear about what books you've read and where you are in achieving your goal (whether you've pulled books from my list or not!). Please comment below.



PERSONAL:

I have been busting my butt in my yard trying to get some plants in the ground before summer turns into winter -- because inevitably fall will somehow end up getting skipped over. The weather here has still consistently been in the 80's and I have a feeling it will stay like that until it snows. Can't I just get a nice 70 degree day, please!


How was the end of your summer?

Monday, August 27, 2018

Made-Up Word of the Month: Readream

After barely blogging last month, and skipping July's Made-Up Word of the Month, I'm back and I'm blogging about those feelings and experiences that only book lovers can understand, by making up words to describe them. Each month, on the last Monday of the month, I'll post a new word.

1.     Readream
[ree-dreem]
noun.

1. a succession of images, thoughts, or emotions related to a book passing through the mind during sleep.

“I had the weirdest readream last night where I imagined that I was attending Hogworts.”


Sometimes when you love a book you find yourself thinking about it all the time, even in your sleep. I know I've definitely dreamed about a few of my favorite stories.

When was the last time one of your favorite books made it into your dreams? Have you ever been pulled into a fantasy world, living the story as the main character? Or maybe you've met a fictional character in your dreams? Share below! 

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Review of Spark of Fire by Grace Anthony

3.5 Stars. A Fast-Paced YA Paranormal Novel with a Solid Plot. Spark of Fire by Grace Anthony is a fun YA read about reapers and shifters. Anthony has created a mythology that is familiar and brand new at the same time. Her main characters, Ember and Liam are teenage reapers on a mission to protect fellow high school student, Billie, who has her own set of mysterious superpowers. As reapers, they are highly trained to battle against rogue shifters putting people in harm's way.

Anthony does a good job keeping the stakes high and the pace quick. I did enjoy reading this book and especially liked Anthony's well-written plot and focus on her characters who were complex and believable. This had a different perspective than I normally find in Young Adult Paranormal Romance books. There was a heavy emphasis on the relationship between Ember and her brother. Strong family relationships and the romance was more hinted at and was possibly being set up for the second book instead of being pivotal to the plot like it is in many YA PNR books.

Where this book lost a few stars for me was that it would have benefitted from a little more editing. There was a lot of passive tense and some awkward word choice. I also felt like some scenes could have been fleshed out a bit more. While there were some nice descriptions in some places, I wanted more description in others. And, the third person, multiple POV made it hard to know which character this story would focus on.

Overall, this was an interesting and suspenseful YA paranormal story with a solid plot and complex characters, but the writing itself would have benefitted from one more draft after a run through with a good beta.




Was the writing/editing solid?

3/5 - The writing was good but with a little more telling than showing and a good amount of passive tense it had room for improvement. There were some typos, though they were not a major distraction.

Did the book have a well-formed plot/subplots?

4/5 - This book really did have a solid plot and it took me on a journey.

Could you relate to the characters?

4/5 - I liked the characters and felt they were all believable and complex.

Did the story make you feel?

3/5 - This book is written in the third person and is told through multiple POV's. Because of that it took me a little while to get into and I didn't get as invested in the characters as I have with other books.

Was the book unputdownable?

4/5 - I would read large chunks at a time, but did put the book down on occasion.



Indie Book Goal 2018 Notes

This is the fourth book I've finished for #IndieBookGoal2018 where I've pledged to read at least 10 Indie books before the end of the year. 

Indie Book Goal 2018