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review 2017-11-14 17:23
Romance and a bit of suspense
Seducing the Defendant (The Conflict of Interest Series) - Chantal Fernando

After reading the blurb on this one, I expected more on Scarlett's case and Jaxon fighting the attraction, but this one is more about the romance and Scarlett's transformation. This is an emotional read with both, Jaxon and Scarlett, having their own things to deal with. We also have the added suspense of who actually killed Scarlett's husband and the connections to the Wind Dragons MC. Having not read the Wind Dragons series, I'm not sure if the characters mentioned were an integral part of that series, but I had no problem following the story. 

Jaxon and Scarlett didn't have that same fiery chemistry as I found in Tristan and Kat's book, but their story is just as good. Jaxon is tender and patient with Scarlett as she finds herself again and they do have good chemistry. 

Overall, Jaxon and Scarlett's story is a well-written, emotional tale that kept me turning pages.

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review 2017-10-24 17:25
The Gap into Conflict / Stephen R. Donaldson
The Gap Into Conflict: The Real Story - Stephen R. Donaldson

Angus Thermopyle was an ore pirate and a murderer; even the most disreputable asteroid pilots of Delta Sector stayed locked out of his way.  Those who didn't ended up in the lockup--or dead.  But when Thermopyle arrived at Mallory's Bar & Sleep with a gorgeous woman by his side the regulars had to take notice.  Her name was Morn Hyland, and she had been a police officer--until she met up with Thermopyle.
But one person in Mallory's Bar wasn't intimidated.  Nick Succorso had his own reputation as a bold pirate and he had a sleek frigate fitted for deep space.  Everyone knew that Thermopyle and Succorso were on a collision course.  What nobody expected was how quickly it would be over--or how devastating victory would be.  It was common enough example of rivalry and revenge--or so everyone thought.  The REAL story was something entirely different.

 

I have a negative past with Stephen R. Donaldson’s work. I loathe the Thomas Covenant series and I could only read the first book of the Mordant’s Need duality. I had the second book on my TBR until I realized that the thought of picking it up depressed me profoundly and I decided to let it go.

So it was with distinct reservations that I picked up The Gap into Conflict and no one was more surprised than me when I actually enjoyed it. The subject matter is difficult, but the insights into the main character, Angus Thermopyle, were worth the struggle. And, as Donaldson promises, we get the “real story” about what is going on in his psyche. It’s not pretty, but it is truthful, as he confronts his feelings and admits to himself that he maybe isn’t as rough & tough as he likes to think. It was kind of like getting a peek into the mind of someone like Ariel Castro, the Cleveland kidnapper.

I liked that no character was locked into a role, that everything kept shifting as the novel unfolded. Morn Hyland starts as a victim, but certainly doesn’t end that way. Nick Succorso is set up to look like a hero, but a small foreshadowing by Donaldson indicates that he is no white knight.

I never thought I would ever say this: I’m looking forward to the next book in this Donaldson series!

Book number 266 of my Science Fiction & Fantasy Reading Project.

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text 2017-09-21 07:10
BookBaby prez says thousands want to review your book free - then suggest three that would cost $394

Steven Spatz is an author, marketer, and the President of BookBaby. He writes the bookbaby Blog at http://blog.bookbaby.com/

 

It's a thinly veiled promotional blog that encourages self-published authors to use the services of BookBaby to prepare and publish their manuscripts. I compare it to the weekly newsletter I get from a local realtor where despite rising interest rates, falling house prices and any other economic calamity that might be happening "it's always a good time to buy or sell property".

 

Here's my response to his most recent blog entitle "Book Reviews: The Ultimate Word Of Mouth Promotion".

 

 

Hi Steven,
Let's crunch some numbers shall we. You shouldn't mind because they're ones you provided.

 

You write in your recent BookBaby blog that book reviews are critical to promoting my book. I agree. You write " "There are literally thousands of book reviewers and bloggers online, and most of them review books even though they aren’t paid."

 

I'd be doing a little more research before making a statement like that if I were you. I'll bet you'll find the majority of these bloggers and reviewers though online aren't active.

 

After making this unqualified claim about thousands of bloggers and reviewers who want to review my work at no charge you then "recommend the following sites:

 

Midwest Book Review that charges $50 a review;
The Indie Reader at $255 a review: and,
The Self-Publishing Review at $119 a review.

 

If I was to "purchase" one review from each site it would cost a total of $394.

 

What happened to the thousands of unpaid book reviewers and bloggers? Why didn't you list a few of them?

 

You can purchase an e-book of mine from Amazon for $3.99 of which I get 35% royalty or $1.35. I'd need to sell about 291 books to pay for these three reviews.

 

And what if they're bad reviews?

 

According to your 2017 Self-Publishing Survey

https://www.bookbaby.com/…/official-self-publishing-survey-…

of the 4300 authors who took part only 5%, or about 215 authors, made $5000 a year from their writing. The other category you draw comparisons from which is obviously significantly larger, is the one you call lower earning authors who earn less than $100 a year from their writing.

 

The inherent conflict of interest of "paid for reviews" aside, how in good conscience can you recommend to the majority of indie authors, making less than $100 a year from their writing as indicated by your own research, that they spend that kind of money on reviews?

 

So which is it, Steven? Are either totally out of touch with your own research and our plight, or part of the pack who prey on naive and delusional new indie authors who are prepared to throw money away chasing that elusive dream?

 

 

 

 

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review 2017-08-13 22:59
Breaching the Contract
Breaching the Contract (The Conflict of Interest Series Book 1) - Chantal Fernando

I was invited by the publisher (through Netgalley) to read this book. I was a fan of some of Chantal Fernando's previous books so I was excited to read the start of this new series. While the book had some great steamy scenes I feel like this was way too short and because of that the characters felt underdeveloped. I don't feel like we even learned all that much about Kat and Tristan and I didn't read enough about them to feel compelled to keep reading. I would consider continuing this series if the characters are more developed and the plot is not rushed. 

 

Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the galley.

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text 2017-07-23 00:33
Reading progress update: I've read 73 out of 168 pages.
The Final Conflict: Omen 3 - Gordon McGill
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