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review 2022-04-21 03:57
BIRDS OF PREY by Crissy Smith
Birds of Prey (Shifter Chronicles Book 1) - Crissy Smith

Aubrey works security for her Cast. Her uncle, head of the Cast, has been murdered. The Coalition has been called in to investigate. The head of the Bird shifters investigators is Cody, Aubrey's former lover. He tells to butt out, but she does not listen. She finds the perp but ends up in trouble. Will Cody be able to rescue her?

I liked this couple. They are strong separately and together. They butt heads a lot but learn to work together. The world building is good. It sets up the series well. The story is weak as there are more questions than answers. How did the murderer get as far as he did? Why was no alarm raised from where he came? How did he get away with it? Why? There were a few lines about his motive and opportunity, but they felt throwaway at best. I do look forward to reading more of the series.

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text 2021-05-12 01:36
The new author as fresh meat

As a new author, do you feel preyed upon?


As you pursue your dream do you ever feel predators are waiting at every part of the journey? As soon as you pause or hesitate, show any lack of confidence, or you ask yourself can I do this, they pounce.



Their mantra is you need a professional. You don’t have the expertise. Even if you did, you’d still need them for a different perspective. Anything free is not as good. Anyone who volunteers to help is an amateur. You’ve invested so much time and effort into your dream don’t sell it short. You’re worth it. Your dream is worth it.


The predators come in the form of book marketers who claim only they know how to get your book in front of all those potential readers. They’re editors who suggest a typo or a dropped word (which they would catch) is the difference between success and failure. They’re graphic artists who have invested heavily in image manipulating software that can be adapted to whatever purpose including book covers. They’re hybrid publishers, a cabal of all the aforementioned.


All that stands between you and success according to them is their services. Oh, yes, and their fee.


It’s great to have a dream but financing it unfortunately is where reality sets in. In most ventures, dreams aside, a cost benefit analysis is compulsory, as is some rudimentary market research. Why not undertake both for the novel you’re considering publishing?


Professionals can cost you thousands of dollars and the truth is a slick, error-free package doesn’t guarantee a best seller. In fact, it doesn’t even guarantee a return on your investment. Do the math. If you sell your e-book on Amazon for $3.99 your net royalty is about $1.40. How many books will you have to sell to pay the cost of the professionals?


Now, take into consideration what the marketplace is like for today’s authors.

The number of books being published every year has exploded. 1.7 million books were self-published in the U.S. in 2018, an increase of 264% in just five years.

Book sales are stagnant. The average U.S. book is now selling less than 200 copies per year and less than 1,000 copies over its lifetime.


(You can check this and more depressing facts out for yourself in a well-source article by Steven Piersanti, Senior Editor, Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Updated June 24, 2020 at https://ideas.bkconnection.com/10-awful-truths-about-publishing)


Save your money. Invest in how-to-write books, programs and courses. Put your work out there and seriously consider what other writers are saying about how to improve it. Search out other writers at your level or better and develop professional relationships. Be patient. Work hard. You’ll discover it’s as much about the journey as the destination.

When you think you’re ready go ahead and self-publish. It’s easy, it’s exciting and it’s free. Make mistakes. You can always upload corrections, or for that matter, unpublish the book and start again.  Keep at it.


Don’t worry too much about success, be more concerned about becoming a better writer.



#amwriting #writerlift #writerslife #writerscafe

#writingcommunity #selfpublished

@Linktree_  #author #authorlife #authorshelpingauthors

#thewriterscircle #newwritersandauthors


 #indieAuthorNews #writerscafe

#thewriterscircle #newwritersandauthors

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review 2020-05-11 17:58
Masked Prey
Masked Prey - John Sandford

Wow. This was just terrible from beginning to end. You got Nazis and a child killer at loose and something something both sides are equally messed up in this country. I don’t even know what to say except Davenport needs to just stop being a Marshal. The series went downhill when he stopped investigating murders and turned into a fixer. Sandford really needs to consider putting Davenport back in Minnesota and investigating cases again with Del and crew. His new cohorts, Bob and Rae are actually getting on my nerves now.


"Masked Prey" is the 30th book in the Prey series. We have followed Lucas as he worked for the Minnesota Police department, as a consultant to the FBI, then as an investigator for the Minnesota Department of Public Safety's Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA), acting occasionally as a special troubleshooter for the governor of Minnesota. Then we get this mess now with Lucas being a U.S. Marshal. After the cannibal case Lucas is at loose ends. When his two favorite politicians call in a favor for Lucas to investigate a Nazi site targeted the children of Senators, he reluctantly agrees. Lucas goes to Washington, DC and Virginia when tracking how the site was created. His newish side-kicks Bob and Rae come on in when it looks like a child may get killed over the site. The book also follows a man who believes this site is the next thing that the people need to do in order to control Senators in the U.S. If a Senator is scared their child will be killed, his organization can influence how they vote (yes this is really gross). The book jumps back and forth between Lucas and the potential killer.


I have to say that Lucas and friends was boring. The killer was too. I just don't care about the whole why do Nazis and child killers do things. I think trying to tie this into politics made the book murkier. I think Sandford was trying to throw shade at both Democrats and Republicans, but both sides are bad is only one political party's talking point. I also hated how Lucas is made to be somehow above politics. Whatever. Sandford has followed some of the real world things going on in the United States (ICE, immigrants, etc.) through the years but he is waffling on this is laughable to me.


I can't even recall the killer's name. He is not as infamous as some of the killers that Lucas has brought down. Also I was really disappointed with the whole Lucas is a hunter of killers thing. I mean, it was so dramatic and made me roll my eyes. He didn't even really solve the last case he was involved in with the whole cannibal rapist guy. Yes this was a character in the previous book.


The writing was eh and the flow was awful from beginning to end. I think there were some funny moments though here and there.


The ending was a real letdown. I don't mind these books because I don't buy them, but Sandford either needs to fully retire Lucas, or just bring in a new character that is young and being mentored by Lucas.

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text 2020-05-06 16:01
Reading progress update: I've read 50%.
Masked Prey - John Sandford

Lord Bob and Rae are back. 

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text 2020-04-28 02:01
Reading progress update: I've read 50%.
Masked Prey - John Sandford

For some odd reason my update wouldn’t post. This is a book about Nazis. That’s all I got. I’m just bored and not in the mood to read about Jewish conspiracies and the ugliness of fictional people. I got enough of this in the real world. 

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