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.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2018

A Very Unambitious Man: A True Anti-Hero

For about the first 20 pages, I always wonder why I buy M. C. Beaton's "Death of ???" mysteries. Death of a Ghost was no different. I find her declarative, staccato style annoying, not only because it's the antithesis of most of the advice I read about writing. Yet, the series continues on the "best selling" charts as it approaches the 40th book.

There is no mystery to the success of Beaton's hapless Highland sleuth, Hamish MacBeth. The books are as funny as all get out. A walk down the high street of Lochdubh, as Hamish ponders some murder or other problem, presents a series of chuckles as he meets the residents of the small town. In Death of a Ghost, the reader gets a funny subplot when a minister's wife tries to hook Hamish up with her neice.

Don't look for any indepth characterization here. The characters of the McBeth books walk their ordained path with a minimum of description and deviation. The chuckles are of prime importance. Even McBeth's constabulary opponents play the part of foils.

Oh, there's a mystery to be solved about who murdered whom and why. It even sports some nice twists and turns. All in all Beaton's books are more complicated than it first seems. Still, Hamish keeps to his set patterns of avoiding credit for the crimes he solves.

Care to take a look at a sample and other reviews? You can find print and epub versions of Death of a Ghost at
Amazon      B&N/Nook       kobo/Rakuten

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Other Interesting Reading

For once, I found a news feed useful...one about the Queen of Great Britain and Megan Markle doing a royal tour together. Not a royalist. [I'm sort of stuck in a Pantagenant mind-set.] But, this article on body language gave me a tick for one of my characters--Pillar.

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Then, an issue book buyers of all sorts should be interested in: anti-trust law. You know that 20th century idea that no one business should control sales of a particular product, aka no monopolies. The US has a particular problem with the idea. Can anyone say Amazon? -- Anyway, seems there has been some stirrings lately, and The Passive Guy wrote a blog about it.

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My Writing Rut

is depressing. Oh, I'm making some progress. Finally got Cahal and Britt together again--in Chapter 12 rather than Chapter 4. Now I have to go back because I forgot to include a bit about Britt's Granny Nan's rings. [I think it's going to be an important part of the last battle at the end of the book so it was necessary.] Ugh.

Am making more little banners for There Be Demons. Won't getting them on Twitter yet. I'm waiting for the publisher to get the book blurb changed. [You can also download the ebook on kobo/Rakuten.]


5***** Review: "a great adventure through a fantasy land that captures your imagination and keeps you turning the pages to find out what happens next. Characters are well developed and the journey we are taken on is fast paced and filled with twists and treachery throughout."

Feisty Britt Kelly's life is a disaster. When her divorces her mother, her family moves into her half-sister's apartment in the projects. Britt must adjust to a new school and a step-mother who hates her and her younger brothers
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But poverty and coping with a new school aren't Britt's worst problems. In the long standing Demon Wars, the minions of Prince Vetis build a secret base in Trebridge behind the Kingscourt's battle lines. When she is drafted to fight the demons with three new friends, Britt didn't know demons existed. She's not even sure she wants to fight them.

The race is on. As the demon forces grow, the Gargoyle Guardians of the city must teach the four teens to use enough "Grace" as a weapon to survive. Britt's new problem: learning to control her magical powers...in spite of Gillen, the gargoyle leader, pissing her off with his fussy rules.


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