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text 2020-05-29 21:11
Reading progress update: I've read 1%.
Exit Strategy - Martha Wells

About 4 hours ago I have been told that I have to do an impromptu night shift at work. Ah, the good times. 

 

So I´m a little bit peeved. And I´m currently not reading anything light and easy. And I don´t want to start a bigger book today, because I want to throw the dice tomorrow. (As you can tell, I´m not in one of my better moods today).

 

But thankfully, I have the fourth Murderbot Novella on my e-reader. I hope it can cheer me up a little bit. Plus, I have to finish this novella before reading the full-length novel Network Effect.

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text 2020-05-28 05:00
Heart of the Ajs Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book


Book:  Heart of the Ajs

Author: T.E. Bradford

Genre:  Fantasy / Sci-Fi blend

Release Date: September 16, 2019

She has magic she cannot use…

He has a secret she must uncover.

THE SIX WORLDS OF BAQA

ASFAR, first planet from the sun is a desert planet steeped in superstition and tradition. Nafisa el Faruz is the princess, defender of the sun and champion of her people. Hers is the most powerful magic—zaman, holder of time.

TRINITOS, third planet, is home to the sky gate and the wicked man who controls its use, the Ajs An’hlj. He is yunfah—a wind walker, one who can control the air itself. The only thing he covets more than control is power, and he has his sights set on Nafisa.


Click HERE to get your copy.
 

About the Author

 


Tracy is the author of the Divide Series, Six World Sagas, and International Bestseller: Kindled Legends – Written in the Stars.

When she’s not busy writing, she can be found taking a scenic drive with her family, snapping photos, or giving voices to her son’s stuffed animals. She reclines her feet in Upstate New York with her very own grumpy kitty, the husband God made just for her, and the son who is her forever best story.
 

More from Tracy

 

 

A large part of the plot for Heart of the Ajs stemmed from a conversation I had with my son. He’d asked me why he still had bad dreams, even after praying for God to take them away.

I searched for the words to explain why God doesn’t always say yes. Sometimes he says no. Or maybe. Or wait–which for me is the hardest answer of all. I thought of an example from when we’d been looking for a new house and didn’t get the one we’d been hoping for. We were so disappointed. But God had a better house in mind for us. We just didn’t know it yet. And at one point my job became very toxic, when after seven years of work I got pregnant and suddenly managers who’d promoted me several times were telling me I wasn’t cutting it. God had a better job in mind for me. I just didn’t know it yet.

I started to wonder if I could weave this truth into a story I’d been working on about a girl who didn’t feel her father or God were listening. She couldn’t see a way out, or understand how anything good could come from where she was.

Yet our precious Heavenly Father always has a plan. A perfect, incredible plan far beyond our wildest imaginings. One He is faithful to reveal with perfect timing.

Even if we may not know it yet.
 
 
 

Author Interview

 

 

When/how did you decide to become a writer?

 

I’m not sure I ever did decide. I was always torn between music and writing, thinking I had to pick one or the other. It took years for me to realize I could do both.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

 

Hah! Great question. I would say I have this thing about revealing info. I love to start a story or chapter, and only reveal to the reader later who it is they’re seeing or hearing. For me, it’s part of enhancing the impact. But I drive my editor crazy.

What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?

 

Have you ever had a late-night snack, like a sandwich piled with every leftover in the fridge? My writing schedule is like that. Family-Job-Write-Job-Other-Family with a dollop of writing on top.

If you could live inside a book, which one would it be?

 

Hmmm. That’s a tough one. Mostly because great books usually also have terrible events or villains. Narnia is beautiful, but set during WWII. Not sure I’d want to experience that first-hand. I’d have to pick the happiest, most peaceful book ever. So I pick Sand and Foam, by Kahlil Gibran.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

If you love writing, just do it. Don’t get caught up in the weeds. No one is perfect right out of the gate. We all learn, and grow, and mostly by making mistakes. Don’t put so much stock in what other’s say that it paralyzes you. People all have their own opinions, and while constructive feedback can be helpful, you have to be able to let the rest go. Write because you love it. Because it’s how you cope with life. Because it’s who you are. But mostly because it makes you happy.

 
 
 

Blog Stops

 

Through the Fire Blogs, May 21

Artistic Nobody, May 22 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 23

Blossoms and Blessings, May 24 (Author Interview)

Inklings and notions, May 25

By The Book, May 26 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, May 27

For the Love of Literature, May 28 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, May 29

Wishful Endings, May 30 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 31

deb’s Book Review, June 1

A Baker’s Perspective, June 2 (Author Interview)

Blogging With Carol, June 3

 
 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate her tour, T.E. is giving away the grand prize package of a $20 Amazon Gift Card, a signed copy of my book Child of Prophecy, a piece of raw onyx, and a genuine Jasper stone heart necklace!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

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review 2020-05-26 23:13
Suggestible You: The Curious Science of ... Suggestible You: The Curious Science of Your Brain's Ability to Deceive, Transform, and Heal - Erik Vance

For more reviews, check out my blog: Craft-Cycle

I received a copy of this book through Goodreads in exchange for an honest review.

This was an absolutely fascinating read that examines placebos, hypnotism, false memories, and related topics. While in no way comprehensive, it is an interesting examination of some of the science, history, and explanations behind such occurrences.

The book was well-constructed and well-written. It has a good balance of personal experience, anecdotes, and research and science through studies and interviews with experts. The science of it is very simplified, making it fairly easy for non-science people to understand. This is broken up by interesting stories as well as Vance's own experiences growing up as a Christian Scientist and experimenting with various topics covered in the book such as having a curse placed upon him and trying hypnotism.

A great popular science book for people interested in learning more about the strange phenomenons surrounding placebos and hypnotism as well as related topics such as the effectiveness of alternative medicines, nocebos, false memories, and the power of expectations. It was so interesting to see how various areas were related and the variety of topics that came up including addiction, PTSD, alien sightings, and Haitian zombies.

The science and writing of the book were very good, however I did feel that the promise to teach the reader how to harness the power of expectation was a bit vague. Its fun to play around with but is certainly not a step-by-step guide on how to take advantage of expectation. It is rather some rules and suggestions.

A fantastic read that is interesting, informative, and mind-blowing. There is even a sample hypnotism script at the end for those interested in experimenting with hypnotism. Great read.

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review 2020-05-25 16:22
Review: Red Sands (Warlords Of Atera #1) by Celia Kyle as Erin Tate
Red Sands - Celia Kyle,Erin Tate

 Red Sands
 Warlords Of Atera #1
 Celia Kyle as Erin Tate
 Science Fiction Romance
 July 22, 2019
 eBook
 247
 Kindle Unlimited

 

She’s on the run from a violent past. He solves his problems with a sword.

 

Fleeing a life of abuse, Sheri climbs aboard a mail-order mate spaceship bound for a distant station, but never arrives… Fate intervenes and her trip takes a quick, deadly turn when she crashes on the planet Atera. She’s surrounded by endless sand dunes, dangerous creatures, and alien beings that remind her of Earth lizards. But one particular lizard hardly leaves her thoughts—a sexy, two legged, muscular male bent on protecting and caring for her at all costs.

 

Drazan is a fierce warrior, the strongest Ateran of the Red Sands, he rules his dunes with an iron fist and sharp sword, and is honor bound to face all challengers to his position. During one of these battles something… strange… happens. Fire rains from the skies and a strange black metal box filled with females crashes to the sands. All thoughts of fighting are lost to the allure of these odd humans—especially one deliciously curvy female who stirs his blood. Now he finds himself with dark yearnings, strong need, and a hardness between his legs that he’s never used before.

 

With Sheri consuming his thoughts, Drazan may have forgotten about his last challenge but his opponent’s brother hasn’t. Now he’s determined to see Drazan suffer… even if that means killing Sheri.

 

Goodreads

Amazon

 

 

Red Sands is book one in the Warlords Of Atera series by Celia Kyle as Erin Tate.

 

Red Sands is currently on Kindle Unlimited and that is how I picked it up. It’s a nice start to the series.

 

We are introduced to a desert planet with lizard like aliens. There are a few different types of colors for these lizard aliens and each live in different parts of the planet. They all come together during one time of the year to find their mates. During this pilgrimage something falls from the sky. They feel it’s from there goddess.

 

All the human women where on their way to be brides to aliens when something happens to their ship and now they are stranded on this sand planet. The human women are trying to learn and understand this new world and in doing so some find their soul mates.

 

Drazen is without doubt a sweetie at heart. I liked him. They aren’t without technology they just don’t bring it on there pilgrimage into the sacred sand lands.

 

Sheri, I didn’t like her. She struggled with trusting and getting intimate with an alien even thou she signed up to be a bride for another alien race. Contradiction.

 

The romance is a slow build and slow towards the love scenes. The love scenes where successful, even with the physical differences. I’m not sure if I total believed in the romance by the end; because of how against Sheri was of hooking up with an alien.

 

I liked the world building. I also enjoyed meeting the different tribes and learning about the lizard culture. I would have liked more information about their wildlife and flora.

 

We are also treated to a little evil plot in that someone is trying to kill the leader of the Red Lizards.

 

Red Sands was an ok read.

  

Rated: 3 Stars

 

Was this review helpful? If so, please consider liking it on Goodreads (Angela)!

 


 

 

 

I was born and raised in Northern Indiana. I’m an outdoor sun loving reader living near San Fransisco. I’m a mother, wife, dog owner, animal, and book lover. I’m the owner, reviewer, and mind behind Angel’s Guilty Pleasures. My favorite animals are horses & dogs. As for reading I love all things paranormal & urban fantasy. My favorite shifters are dragons!

 

 

Source: angelsguiltypleasures.com/2020/05/review-red-sands-warlords-of-atera-1-by-celia-kyle-as-erin-tate
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review 2020-05-25 14:19
'Network Effect - Murderbot Diaries #5' by Martha Wells
Network Effect - Martha Wells,Kevin R. Free

Finally, Murderbot gets the full-length novel that it and we deserve. Thank you, Martha Wells. I've loved the other episodes in the Murderbot Diaries but I was a little frustrated at having them drip-fed to me in what seemed to me to be a novel broken into novellas for no good reason.

 

I preordered the audiobook version of 'Network Effect' and dived into it as soon as it arrived in my audiobook queue. After four hours of immersion in Murderbot's world, this was my reaction:

This is a wonderful ride. MurderBot remains its compelling self but being freed from the novella format means that the plot structure is more complicated and the puzzle that needs to be solved has more twists in it.

 

Reading 'Network Effect' is like falling through a cascade of action sequences while working on a big picture to make sense of everything. There's never a dull moment and it took some self-control for me to do anything else today.'

I managed to pace myself and consumed the book over three days rather than one. The mystery continued to become more complex and the actions scenes continued to pile on and they were all fun and very well done but what I liked most about the book was the way in which Murderbot developed.

 

Murderbot isn't, doesn't want to be and can't become, human. Humans are messy and often reckless, shouldn't be trusted with weapons, are inappropriately optimistic for creatures that are both fragile and slow. Nevertheless, Murderbot is attached to its humans pretty much in the way you or I might be attached to our Labradors.

 

So, if Murderbot is going to continue to associate with humans and commit itself to protecting some of them, but isn't, doesn't want to be and can't become human, how does it develop to become more than a SecUnit that's hacked its governor unit so it can spend more time watching TV?

 

Martha Wells' answer to that is inspired.

 

 

Firstly she lets Murderbot itself slowly figure out that that is a question that deserves to be answered. Then she builds a plot that brings Murderbot back into contact with ART, the sarcastic, extremely bright, apparently working on covert missions transport ship that sheltered Murderbot earlier. Except this time Murderbot has to rescue both ART and ART's humans. Seeing the relationship between ART and its humans gives Murderbot a lot to think about. Creating a 2.0 copy of himself, for reasons I won't share here, and using his memories to persuade another SecUnit to hack its own governor unit, again help Murdrbot to reflect on its identity.

 

 

Then the Network Effect kicks in: we have multiple non-human intelligences connected to each other making Murderbot's situation less unique while making his value higher and pushing him to define who he is and what he wants to do next.

(spoiler show)

 

It's beautifully done. I had an exciting ride, a lot of action, good mystery and I got to watch Murderbot grow up.

 

I'll be back for more as soon as it's available.

 

I think the audiobook is quite well done, it even manages not to make Murderbot sound definitively male or female. Click on the SoundCloud link below to hear a sample.

https://soundcloud.com/audiolibrary-a/network-effect-by-martha-wells-audiobook-excerpt
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