Saturday, August 31, 2013

The old bait and switch OR deliberately mislabeling a book's genre #amreading #amwriting

I truly mean no disrespect to Christians. We are all entitled to our beliefs and I respect yours. In fact if you've been reading my blog for awhile you will know that I recently interviewed Christian author Taylor Hohulin about his novel, Alpha, and the conflicts between religious beliefs and writing
fiction. I really respect his take on the situation.

That said, however, there is something wrong when you mislabel a book in hopes of converting nonbelievers to your religion.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

The 7th Day by Nika Lubitsch #bookreview #amreading

I was provided an ebook copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Abites, this book has quite a few five star reviews and those reviews are quite effusive in their praise. Looks like I'm in a minority here.

This was a strange book for me. I'm not sure if it is just because I am not used to reading books written by German authors, or if the book truly is strange.

Bille is a woman charged with the murder of her husband. The book starts as she recounts the seven days of her trial in journal type entries directed toward her old lover/defense attorney. There is a very bizarre vulgar sexual paragraph thrown in there which does not seem to fit with the rest of the book. I'm guessing it was intended to show us the nature of Bille's past relationship with Ulli but it just feels completely out of place.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Interview with Taylor Hohulin author of Alpha #interview #amreading #amwriting

My darling Abites, you just read my review of Alpha. Now come get to know Alpha's fabulously interesting creator and author Taylor Hohulin!

Taylor Hohulin

Taylor, it is so wonderful of you to join us today and answer some fairly in depth questions. Welcome! I have a lot of questions for you after reading Alpha so if it is all right with you, we'll jump right in.

1. What inspired Alpha
I couldn't tell you exactly. I know I was watching a movie with my family. I even know I was somewhat bored with the movie, but for the life of me, I can't remember what the movie actually was. Whatever the case, the plot ended up going a direction I didn't expect, and I asked myself what might happen if it went the way I expected. I ended up taking that thought and running with it the next few weeks. From there, I ended up with a kernel of a story that slowly but surely started to look like the book I finally published a couple months ago. 

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Sci Fi Light - Book review of Alpha by Taylor Hohulin #bookreview #amreading

Today on the blog Abites, I am reviewing sci-fi novel Alpha by Taylor Hohulin.

I was provided a copy of this ebook in exchange for a fair and honest review.

My review:
At the end of Alpha, Taylor Hohulin says that Data from Star Trek Next Generation is his favorite robot. I suspect that would offend Data since he is an android, but that does explain the vibe of Alpha. While this is a sci-fi novel, with robots created for military warfare it is very light and irreverent in tone (even though violent).

It is even softer sci-fi than my own book, Lifeboat. At least I think so.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Faith, Hope and Love - a guest post by Troy Lambert #guestpost

Today on the blog Abites, we are honored to have author Troy Lambert sharing his thoughts on what motivates us. What do you think? Is he right? What motivates you?

Faith, Hope, and Love by Troy Lambert
(Author of Broken Bones, Redemption, and Temptation)

Are my novels Redemption and Temptation religious in nature? Of course they are. All books are religious in nature. 

Writers always talk about motivation but I’m not here to bore you with writer speak. Let’s, for a moment, take a look at our own lives, for they, after all, are what we writers base characters on. What motivates us?

Love. Love is the motivation for everything we do. Whether that is love for money, things, or a person, love is what drives us. The love of new technology drives us to buy that new computer.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Birthday giveaway! Signed book & tote bag. #giveaway

Guess what Abites? It's my birthday! That's right. I'm old. Damned old. But because it is my birthday I am giving YOU presents. What do you think about that? Sound good?

One lucky winner will get a signed copy of my book, Lifeboat.

So here is what you do. You get a freebie entry just because it is my birthday.You can get more entries if you share this post on Twitter, follow me on Twitter and/or like my Facebook page..You know, all the lovely stuff you can find right here in the Rafflecopter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

But here is the really fun part!
A second lovely winner will get a signed copy of my book, Lifeboat AND a Lifeboat tote bag!

Please excuse the HORRIBLE photo of the prizes. I am a crap photographer. Just trust me that they look much better in person. (This tote bag is one I've been using - yours will be brand new.) So if you give ME this very specific present, you get to enter to win this prize pack. 

Monday, August 19, 2013

Beware scammers!!! They've gotten too good at what they do.

Abites, today I am talking about something very serious which is not related to reading or writing.

You might think you are too smart. That you are immune. The truth is, you might just not be as smart as you think you are. Be sure to read to the end.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Giveaway and Review of Life First by RJ Crayton #bookreview #giveaway

So you recently read my interview with the awesome author RJ Crayton. Now I get to share with you my review of her thought provoking, and thrilling debut novel, Life First. She has very generously offered to give two of my lucky readers a copy of Life First. Be sure to enter the Rafflecopter for your chance to win.

I was given a copy of this ebook in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Life First is set at some unspecified future date after the population of the USA has been decimated by pandemics, resulting in social upheaval and changes in law. The social construct now requires you to risk your health by making living donations to others. Not to do so is illegal and can result in a criminal trial and sentence of "death by donation". That is right. You are confined and your body is mined for parts until it kills you.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Interview with RJ Crayton, author of Life First #interview

I recently met the brilliant, witty, and gorgeous RJ Crayton, author of dystopian novel Life First. I was so taken with her that I immediately asked her to marry me in spite of the fact that we are both married to other people, and same sex unions are not yet legal where I live. I have settled for being her slightly creepy, but in a non-threatening, non-sexual way, stalker.
She completely won me over with her humor and charm and I begged her to let me interview her so I could share with you beautiful Abites some of her awesomeness.

I hope you will be as charmed as I have been, and keep an eye on the blog because soon I will be sharing my review of her fabulous debut novel, Life First, along with a giveaway of it.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

My review of 1984 by George Orwell #bookreview

G'day Abites. How ya' goin'? That's Aussie for hi, how are you.  I think I've mentioned before that I haven't read much in the way of classic literature. As a kid I thought, if they made you read it in school it must be boring. Sometimes when I've read classics as an adult I decide I was right as a kid, and sometimes not.

My review:
1984 is one of those books that many high schools have on their curriculum, but it is one I wasn't forced to read, so I didn't. Until now.

I have to say, that it has left me a bit conflicted. I'm not a fan of Orwell's writing style. He drags on and on repetitively, and it is about 95% narration. His description of people and things don't gel with me. Everything is ugly in this book, with only one or two minor exceptions. (I'm sure that is intentional, but doesn't make for a pleasant reading experience.)

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Interview & giveaway with Timothy Burns, author of Ghosts of the Void #giveaway #interview

Abites, you asked for it and I deliver. You want more giveaways and you want more author interviews. Well here is two in one. 
Today I am privileged to have on the blog, author Tim Burns whose book Ghosts of the Void is a hard sci-fi thriller. He has generously offered to give 6 lucky winners a copy of this exciting new book. Be sure to enter the rafflecopter for your chance to win.

Ghosts of the Void is the second science-fiction novel by Timothy Burns. 
You can get this 296-page (105k words) paperback for $9.99 from CreateSpace.
You can get the ebook for $1.49 from Amazon.

Add it to your Goodreads list now.
Tim, thanks for stopping by today to talk to me (and the lovely Abites). Ready for some hard-hitting (okay, maybe not so hard, but ones I want to know the answers too) questions?

Friday, August 9, 2013

Cute and cuddly murder mystery?!?! Party Crashers (Body Movers 0.5) by Stephanie Bond #bookreview

My review:
Awhile back I reviewed Whole Lotta Trouble by Stephanie Bond. I liked it, but it had room for improvement. I have to say, Stephanie is getting better.

This review is for Party Crashers (Body Movers 0.5). 

Can you call a murder mystery cute and cuddly? Seems like an oxymoron, but I think you can. I just did. ;)

If you like light murder mysteries, you'll love Party Crashers. Jolie is a character I think most of us can relate to. She's well developed, down to earth, and not annoying like so many humorous chick lit heroines can be. She's trying to solve the mystery of her casual boyfriend's disappearance and finds herself in a situation that is way over her head, and in the meantime she meets a hunky and wealthy hero that she's not quite sure she can trust.

It's formulaic, but it's a good formula. One that will work time and again. A very enjoyable, light read. 

Do you like humorous, romantic mysteries? What are your favorites? 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

I hear you! You aren't just breathing.

I'd like to thank all you lovely Abites who participated in my recent survey. You are the TRUE Abites and I hear you!

I thought you might like to see the results. 

Overwhelmingly, your favorite thing about this blog were the book reviews, which is wonderful because that was my primary purpose in starting the blog and continues to be what most of my posts are about.

But many of you also said your favorite thing about the blog is me, and well, *blushing* thank you. I like you too. And of course my lovely friend Kriss had to make me laugh by saying "you believe in Aliens and live in Australia and are sexy". 

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Is this a true story? Virginia Creeper by Blaine Lee Pardoe #bookreview

My review:
Okay Abites, bear with me on this one. This is written as a true crime story. The protagonist in the book IS Blaine Pardoe, the author. He claims, in an interview I read, that although some of the names were changed, everything else is true.

But here's the thing. While the story is a good story - it is creepy, violent, and horrific - it is also paranormal. That in itself lends it to some skepticism. I'm not saying paranormal stuff can't be real. BUT...

And this, for me, is a BIG but...

Blaine Pardoe is reportedly a published author of many non-fiction works. This book is not self-published - it is published by Hydra

Friday, August 2, 2013

Ugh! A rant and Version 2.0 by C.M. Adams #bookreview

Hello Abites - I'm venting today - please read on.

Version 2.0 by C.M. Adams

My review:
This book sucked me in and had me all the way. I was so intrigued. And then - BAM - without warning the book ended. This author has broken what I think is the cardinal rule of series writing. 

Authors please take note - I've said it before and I'll say it again. If you are writing a book series you need to have two things. You need to have a major plot line that runs through all of the books in your series - this plot line is what will carry your readers on to the next book in the series. But you also need to have a minor plot lot for EACH book that can be resolved in that book so that each book gives a sense of closure and satisfaction while the major plot lines drags them forward to the next book.