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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Friday, September 21, 2018

Hey, sorry to say I'm in the "Twilight Zone".
My husband has been in the hospital and will still need care when he comes home.
At the moment, I'm not reading much.

On the other hand, my new book Running from Demons has been published in e-form. I haven't had time to get the Print-on-Demand set up. Think it has something about me being an old lady and there being only so many hours in the day. For some reason, my body thinks it has to sleep.

But, I have made sales and have reviews, mostly 5 stars. But, I like the one I used in the banner. I thought going through a teen's learning moments might be dull, Other reviews have said the same thing as the one below. So, I'll heave a sigh of relief.

You can see for yourself at this universal link which will direct you to a universal link to a venue you can use. 



Of course, if you happen to buy the book, I would appreciate a short review.

Should also say, I'm doing a GoodReads Giveaway until 13 October 2018.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Goof-ups and Murderous Mayhem Create Reading Magic

Humor plus huge doses of magic, mayhem, and murder create a ripping story in R. S. Belcher's Nightwise The Night Dahlia. Laytham Ballard, the wizard protagonist, is hired by a powerfyl fae lord to find his missing daughter. Unfortunately, Ballard creates chaos wherever he goes, in spite of his good intentions.

In the opening chapters, it soon becomes clear that Ballard is powerful in his own right and may be the perfect man to solve the cold case. At the same time, it becomes clearer that if something can go wrong, it will.

The Night Dahlia has Ballard returning to his old stomping grounds in Los Angeles, CA where he once was a member of the wizardry cops, aka the Nightwise. Ballard's flip commentary as he digs into the porn film scene for clues keeps readers on their toes, and sometimes, holding their breath. Belcher adds depth to the plotline by tieing the current missing person case to a cold seriel murder case the kicked him out of Nightwise.

So much for the mystery part of the book. Belcher's paranormal creatures are both pertinent and creative, even giving an explanation for serial murderer Charles Manson's powers of persuation. More important, Belcher makes clear why Ballard's abandoned friends still accept him.

The book's a stand-alone, even thougn it takes place late in Ballard's life. His banter about his past goof-ups explain necessary backstory and keeps everything in perspective. You can learn more about Nightwise on

Kindle           Nook           kobo/Rakuten

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My Writing Rut

I'm still in my rut.....if I consider all the stuff I'm not getting done. On the other hand, Running from Demons is up and staggering. Still no reviews yet, and it's too soon for any sales to show up. That's partly my fault. I used "the pre-order" time to chase the formatting of the book rather than the sales.

The short blurb:
Pillar Beccon can't remember belonging anywhere, especially not in the Freemage commune where she grew up. After she graduates from high school, she jumps at the chance to learn why her mother ran away from her family home far to the East. But danger haunts her journey as a demon seeks to destroy her.

Running from Demons tells the story of Pillar's search to find a place to call her own. The book continues the chronicles of Andor, a land where the mundane world clashes with one of magic and demons. If you love paranormal stories of discovery and mayhem, this is the story for you.

If you review books from Net Galley, you can get an ARC copy      here      for free. If you'd like to read the longer blurb and/or a sample you can click      here.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Returning to the Grindstone & Muttering About Tatoos

Since the US Labor Day [end of summer] is over, I guess I should come back from my blogging vacation.

Oh, I didn't take a vacation from reading. Just from doing reviews, which was a good thing. I mostly reread books I wanted to visit again, which was good for you since I already reviewed many of them.

My longest read? Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson series which I've been itching to read straight through for years. Now I'm a big fan of Patricia Briggs so I won't bother you yet again about her craftmanship and imagination. Not only do her main characters evolve consistently through the series, but the secondary ones do too. Even the vampire antagonist, Marsilia.

But I did have some bones to pick.

Cover Art is always important. According to many experts it's key to selling books. But when you have a series, covers can become a problem. Take Mercy Thompson's tats, starting with Moon Called. Nice sleeves and the signature coyote one below her navel. Even has hints of a service station shirt.

Won't plague you with seven or eight covers, but the cover for Silence Fallen corroborates my
grumble. Note the tat above her breasts. Of course she could have gotten a new one. But removing the sleeves that reached her shoulders? Not so likely, I think, especially when Night Broken shows different sleeves and a coyote above her breasts.

So much for being picky. I did enjoy revisiting Tamora Pierce's Tortal world from the Becca Cooper trilogy through the Trickster books. Love the historical development of the society and the struggles to return lady knights to the society. Still, find an implied problem with the technology, though. It's rather static over a couple hundred years.

Wandered through some other authors, but mostly eliminated my to-read pile. Surprising how many books didn't last three chapters. Which is why they were festering on the pile.

Did get some new reading done, mainly R. S. Belcher's new book, The Night Dahlia,  which finally arrive from the family lending library. The kid didn't ask for it back, so I think it's getting stuck to my bookshelves.

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My Writing Rut

Most important for me, I did get Running from Demons published. It can now be found at a number of different stores/venues as an ebook. I'm having problems getting the print on demand version up so it isn't yet available. I know they say it's easy, but you forget I have two black left-thumbs.

Short Blurb:

Pillar Beccon can't remem-ber belonging anywhere, especially not in the Freemage commune where she grew up. After she graduates from high school, she jumps at the chance to learn why her mother ran away from her family far to the East. But danger haunts her journey as a demon seeks to destroy her.

Running from Demons tells the story of Pillar's search to find a place to call her own. The book continues the chronicles of Andor, a land where the mundane world clashes with one of magic and demons. If you love paranormal stories of discovery and mayhem, this is the story for you.

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.