M. K. Theodoratus, Fantasy Writer, blogs about the books she reads--mostly fantasy and mystery authors whose books catch her eye and keep her interest. Nothing so formal as a book review, just chats about what she liked. Theodoratus also mutters about her own writing progress or ... lack of it.


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Romance Rising -- Above the Cliches

Kay's Book Review:
Discovered Lee Roland's book, Viper Moon, on the grocery store bookshelves, where I seem to be finding a lot of the books I read lately. The cover featured the standard sexy lady in tight leather pants ... eh ... with red hair even... eh ... but she had a red and black banded snake draped over her. Yeah, a paranormal romance tempted me, and I read it.

The front cover blurb read: Evil waits for the dark of the moon. I almost didn't buy the book because of it. What kind of smarmy evil lolly-gags around? True evil blind-sides you until you have to pull your arse out of the blood. -- Maybe: Evil gathers in the dark of the moon?  Maybe not.

Fortunately, the back cover blurb developed the primary story line: Cassandra Archer is the Earth Mother's Huntress who rescues children from an imprisoned evil entity fighting to break free of his confines. So the dark of the moon is meaningful because that's the thriller deadline. The book opens with MC running from monsters in the town's sewers, probably without leather pants. The beginning timeline: the full moon. Cass has about two weeks to find and rescue two children from being sacrificed.

One disappointment with the book.  I think it's a stand-alone which is too bad since Rowland developed some interesting twists on the concept of the Mother Goddess and her servants. Both Cass and the love interest are well-drawn, but don't quite rise above the paranormal hero cliche. But, the secondary characters, the setting of an urban world in decay, and the twisting villains shine. A lovely little adventure.

Grumbling About My Lessons:
Had coffee with a successful writer a couple days ago.  [Yeah, our town has bunches of them.]  Among the the things we discussed was editing.  He doesn't.  I do because I'm so dyslexic I don't know if what I'm reading is really what the print on the paper/screen says. From reading a bunch of free stories on Smashwords, I'm thinking more people than me need a good editor before they publish.

I can hear everyone groaning at the cost of self-publishing books.  Yeah, it can be expensive ... especially if you write loooong books. The Passive Guy gave a link to the price guide of the EFA, the Editorial Freelance Association. It'll give you an idea of what you'll need to pay a competent editor.

Most of my time recently is spent writing ... and asking for book reviews.  In the process, I've found a list of book reviewers that features mostly romance and sci fi/fantasy: Lauri Owens' Embers. Got Taking Vengeance in another queue to be reviews.  Took me some two days to work through the list. Guess marketing trumps networking time.

Oh, I should mention I've given up on downloads/readers? for Cavern Between Worlds.  After almost 250 downloads, I've started charging $0.99  for it. Yeah, it's up on Amazon as well as Smashwords.Yeah, the inevitable happened. The downloads stopped dead.

Last but not least.  Opened my personal email this morning ... and there was a review sitting it it.  Okay, the notice that a review of Taking Vengeance was posted. Richard Hays of Stuff I Wrote did a very kind review. He writes better poetry than my Bad Haiku.

I may be spending a lot of time in my computer chair, 
but Wiggles sees to it that I get 
my exercise.
He likes to be twirled in an office chair best and
meows loudly if I don't jump up and turn the other chair.
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