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Posts Tagged ‘Romance’

Guest Post and Spotlight: Those Review Blues by Angelina Rose

In Blog Hops, Giveaways, Guest Posts on August 29, 2013 at 6:56 pm

 
Me.1aTHOSE REVIEW BLUES…

According to Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia… “a book review is a form of literary criticism in which a book is analyzed on content, style, and merit…”

For many authors, reviews are the most terrifying part of releasing their book out into the big wide world. Once the send button on a submission to a publisher or agent is hit, their book is out there, finding its way to one and all (we hope).

Reviews are important enough for some people to earn a living from… they’re a necessary part of publishing a book. Nowadays though, through the use of the internet, anyone of any age and, maybe it can also be said, with any axe to grind, can write a review on your book.

One important aspect to always remember is that each and every review is one person’s opinion only. And this opinion is certainly going to be colored by both their conscious and unconscious biases. It is also going to reflect their beliefs and values… none of us can escape our interpretation and view of life.

Statistics also reveal, there will always be a group of people who will not like, even hate your book. Let’s hope that is a small number… but they will always be there.

What do I think makes a good review?

Not all reviews are equal…

  • There are those containing a handful of words that tell you nothing. They just say the book was a good read or maybe a waste of time: they don’t tell you why.
  • When a reader, or I should say a reviewer, makes their personal biaz clear when giving a review, I take what they say seriously. At least they are honest enough to admit to what colors their viewpoint.
  • A review sounding like a book description only shows the reviewer read the book and which part of the story they enjoyed.
  • Some quality reviews are not positive reviews. These are the ones that I really give my attention to (once I get over the ego hit). They give a different view of my work and I chose to learn from these critiques.

If a reviewer can put into words what it was about your book that grabbed their imagination, or maybe didn’t grab their imagination, this then gives readers the ability to decide for themselves.

Getting over a negative review.

I actually read we need three positive reviews to negate the effect on us of one negative review. Apparently our brain is programmed to react much more strongly to negative stimuli than positive ones.

In other words, before reading your reviews, make sure you have some of your favorite chocolate on hand to help you celebrate a great review, or pick you up after a negative one.

Whether we like it or not, it’s a fact your book will receive some negative reviews, but its worth remembering a review is the opinion of only one person in the whole wide-world…

About Angelina Rose:

Angelina Rose has wanted to write ever since she could hold a pencil. The first daughter of immigrant parents, Angelina had her head buried in books, lost in a world of heroes, heroines and exotic places.
Me.1a

It was a shocking experience that jump-started Angelina’s author career.

“I awoke in the ICU… I had been unconscious for several days,” Angelina says.

In 2010, Angelina had a long stint in hospital following her involvement in a motor vehicle accident: the longest time off work (as a Registered Nurse), she’d ever had in her life!

It was then she took up pen and paper and started to write again, just as she had done when she was a child. She wrote four short fiction stories for young adults, entered them in several competitions, and managed to win three first prizes!

After happily dipping her toes into writing those short fiction stories for young adults, Angelina has now authored four books in a new “Mill Creek Crossing Romance” series… contemporary romance intended for adults.

The “Starting Over Series” is another contemporary romance series she wrote about a subject she knows well… nurses and their love life. At a recent reunion of her graduating class, she could not help but notice how the same girls would group together and laugh, chat, and even shed some tears over their lives since graduating. Many of the girls had divorced… so Angelina thought “what if a group of the nurses came up with a plan to meet in two years and have a new love story to share?” Then the first story in the series was born.

There is always a story running around in her head. A man with thick dark hair, gray-blue eyes, with an engaging smile and a quick wit… or a girl crying over a broken relationship. She finds herself talking to these characters during her day: when she’s doing dishes, or bathing babies at the hospital. These characters crop up on days at the beach or on walks through the neighborhood. This is how the stories start to grow.
Angelina’s mother was an author, so Angelina grew up with a love of words and stories. If she wasn’t writing a short story about something that took her fancy, her head was buried in books… reading, reading, reading, as her brother constantly told her…

When she’s not spending time with her goodlooking man, or quality time with her laptop, she’s working at the hospital, hanging out with her family and friends, or walking her two dogs around the neighborhood. Angelina spends as much time as she can travelling, then coming home and including some of those adventures in her stories.

Angelina really loves to hear from her readers and she invites you to connect with her on Facebook as she interacts daily with her readers there!

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

AR.Eyes.FGenre: Romance

Publisher: BookBaby

Release Date: April 26, 2013

Amazon

Book Description:

After a tragic loss five years ago, Sally Overby becomes an Attorney in Atlanta. She convinces herself that all she’ll ever need again is her young son, David, and her life as an attorney. Until one day, Colin Dean barges back into her life and promptly blows her safe world apart, driving her crazy as only a guy she’d had a “school girl crush” on can.

Although shocked and thrilled by Colin’s attention, Sally is wary to love deeply. Only, with every loving look Colin gives her plus every sweet kiss, as the attraction between them sparks, she can’t help but wonder if she’s met the one she should be with. And although Colin didn’t realize his life was going to change so quickly, amazingly, he isn’t the least bit interested in fighting that change. Instead, he’s gearing up for a different fight altogether… the one for Sally’s heart.

Will Colin be able to convince her that’s it safe to love him… and that forever isn’t really out of reach?

Romantic, amusing, and deeply moving, Book 4 in the Mill Creek Crossing Romance Series, is a tale that will stay with you.

The Eyes of Love is a novella… you will be able to enjoy it in just one day!

Sally, it’s been almost five years, honey. That isn’t too soon by anyone’s standards. Everyone wants you to be happy, including your son I bet.”

We’ll see. This isn’t a big deal. I think he just feels bad for me,” she said without thinking.

Why would he feel bad for you?”

Oh. Nothing. Listen, I’ve got to go. Call ya later!” she said as she quickly ended the call. She stopped for a moment and leaned against an old brick building, wondering how she’d allowed herself to slip. Up until now, no one outside of her high school had any idea of how bullied she was. And she was hoping they wouldn’t remember either.

As she started to walk again, she noticed Stephanie Dixon walking down Main Street, arm-in-arm with Jazz. She ducked back behind a small brick wall attached to the building and watched them. Stephanie hadn’t changed much. She was still buxom and blond and snobby. She walked like she owned the town, and Jazz looked completely out of place holding onto her.

Sally had never known Jazz personally, but she’d watched him around school for years. He was Colin’s sidekick, and the two boys had known each other since they were very young. Her shock over what Jazz had done to his friend was still fresh, and she wondered what they would do if she started walking down the street in front of them.

Deciding that she needed to do something bold for her inner younger Sally, she ran her fingers through her hair and walked out from behind the building. At first, they didn’t notice her, but out of the corner of her eye she saw Stephanie elbow Jazz. She walked directly into their path, but Jazz wouldn’t make eye contact. That’s when she realized that Steph was elbowing him not because she recognized her but because Jazz must have been admiring her a little too much. The thought made her feel warm and fuzzy inside.

Sally was mostly struck by how sad Stephanie really looked. She looked like a woman who was desperately trying to hold on to any shred of youth she had. Looking back, her looks were all she had even back then. She wasn’t all that smart, her personality stunk and now her looks were starting to fade too. For a moment, she almost felt sorry for her. Just a little.

Although the bullying had been horrible, it had given Sally the ability to gain strength in herself. As an attorney, she wasn’t afraid to fight for others because she remembered what it was like to have her basic human rights stripped from her.

Hungry for lunch, Sally ducked into Stella’s Diner to have a sandwich and plan her day. She had some shopping to do for the perfect dress to wear to the reunion, and the dress shop in Mill Creek Crossing might not have a big selection.

Welcome to Stella’s!” a waitress called from behind the counter. Sally nodded and found a booth next to the window. From her vantage point, she could still see Jazz and Steph who were now sitting on the bench where she and Colin had run into each other. She was angry about something and crossing her arms with a pout on her face. Sally was struck by how immature she still was, and there was Jazz trying to reason with her. Good luck, Jazz, she thought. She’d tried to reason with her many times throughout high school.

Hi there. I’m Gracie…” the waitress said as she put down a napkin and some silverware.

Gracie. It’s me. Sally Overby,” she said grinning.

Gracie stopped in her tracks and squinted her eyes. “Sally? I can’t believe it! You’re stunning, honey!” she said reaching down and hugging her. “What are you doing in town?”

Reunion. And to see Momma, of course.”

I can’t get over how beautiful you are!”

Thanks.”

You were always a sweetheart of a person, but now your outside matches your inside.”

That’s a nice way to look at it.”

So, what have you been up to?”

Let’s see… Became an attorney, got married, had a son, became a widow…”

Oh, Sally, I’m so sorry! I remember that now. Your Momma told me a few years back. You’re still single?”

Yep. But I have a date to the reunion tomorrow night, so I guess I’m officially back on the dating circuit now,” Sally said giggling.

Date? Who with?”

Colin Dean.”

Gracie started fanning herself. “Oh, girl, you scored on that one, huh?”

***


Guest Post: Boxes of Books! by Tara Fox Hall

In Charities, eBooks, Guest Blogger on June 2, 2013 at 12:03 am

Once again, I am pleased to host my guest Tara Fox Hall with another of her charitable causes. This time she has come up with a cracker, which should suit many of us; a unique way to put all those books to use that we may never read again. Welcome Tara, and thank you, as ever, for being here.

Tara Fox Hall guest blogging on Carte Blanche by Amelia CurzonThank you to Amelia Curzon for once again letting me guest at her blog about one of my charities.

If you’re a voracious reader like me, it’s likely that there are many bookshelves in your home piled with books. Inevitably, with the regular influx of new books, those bookshelves get overcrowded, then heaping, then spill over onto the floor. While the advent of e-readers and e-books has helped slow this process in recent years, I find it still happens to me, especially as I grow older and my tastes in books change. When I do a “book purge,” there are usually boxes and boxes of books that need a new home.

What to do with all the books? Usually libraries used to take them for book auctions, and sometimes organizations like the Salvation Army would take book donations. But for those that would like to help out a charity, I offer another option: Operation Paperback.

Here is a little about Operation Paperback:

Operation Paperback is a non-profit organization incorporated in the State of Pennsylvania that collects gently used books nationwide and sends them to American troops overseas, as well as veterans and military families here at home. Since 1999, we have shipped over 1.9 million books to locations around the globe.

Our service members and their families make sacrifices every day for our country. It takes so little to let them know that they are appreciated. When you donate to Operation Paperback, you will let America’s military know that you appreciate their service and their sacrifices.

I joined them in the fall of 2011 in an effort to get some of my books out in print form. With each shipment, I usually sent a copy of Lash Book #1 or Promise Me Book #1. Originally, I just sent to troops overseas. In 2012, Operation Paperback included veteran organizations to their list of book recipients. Now in 2013, military families can also receive books.

Volunteers do have to register to participate, but the procedure is surprisingly easy to do. Operation paperback accepts most kinds of reading material, including magazines, comic books, hardcover books, etc. (but no erotica). If you have extra books that you aren’t going to read again, consider donating them to this worthy charity. For more about Operation Paperback, click here: http://www.operationpaperback.org/about.php.

Tara Fox Hall’s writing credits include nonfiction, horror, suspense, action-adventure, erotica, and contemporary and historical paranormal romance. She is the author of the paranormal action-adventure Lash series and the vampire romantic suspense Promise Me series. Tara divides her free time unequally between writing novels and short stories, chainsawing firewood, caring for stray animals, sewing cat and dog beds for donation to animal shelters, and target practice.

Taken For His Own - Book CoverTaken For His Own by Tara Fox Hall

Blurb: After learning Theo is alive, Sar immediately embarks on a mission to find him. Reunited, the lovers return to New York; Danial, Terian and Theo uneasily combining forces to protect Sar from Al’s assassins still seeking her. But when Sar is taken prisoner in an all-out attack, only one man can save her: her old adversary, Devlin.

Buy Links:

amazon.com

amazon.co.uk

Smashwords                                                        

Melange/lulu link for Print, PDF and HTML copies                                      

All Romance E-books

Excerpt:

“What about what you did to me?” I whispered, gazing at him and biting my lip.

“That wasn’t a whim,” Devlin said, dropping his eyes. “That was my bad judgment. Sadly, it wasn’t the worst mistake I’ve made in my life.”

“What was?”

Devlin didn’t answer. I reached out and took his cool hand in mine.

“When you lead others you must do whatever you have to in order to save your people,” he said with a sigh. “Compromising values should matter less than saving lives.”

“I agree with you,” I said. “If you rule others, you have a responsibility to them above the responsibility to yourself. But even then, I think your family should come first.”

“They should,” Devlin said in a cracked voice. He swallowed hard. “But the past can’t be undone.”

I squeezed his hand. “What happened to Danial wasn’t your fault.”

“Yes, it was,” he said softly.

“How is it your fault?” I said curiously, easing closer to him.

“Because I should have known what the thing was when it attacked. I didn’t know anything back then, except strategy and tactics. I was too concerned about rising through the ranks as fast as possible, so I could leave my family behind and become someone important.”

“What did you want to be?”

“A commander of men, either soldiers or police.”

I was surprised that Devlin would want to uphold the law or spend his life guarding others. Yet it made sense. When he’d taken me from my house years ago, he’d insisted on taking me to Danial, because I wore the choker. He was here putting himself in danger now to keep me safe.

“I knew something had attacked a few people on that road in that last month,” he continued. “I knew that there was a chance we might be attacked transporting the prisoner. But the road was the quickest way to our destination. I’d been assured that if I made the journey in good time, I’d get the promotion I wanted, and Danial would get my old position.”

“You aren’t at fault for what you did. It wasn’t for an evil reason.”

“Yes, I am,” he said despondently. “It was my greed and pride that doomed us.”

Carefully, I reached for Devlin and put my arms around him. He tensed at my touch, then relaxed.

“You did the best you could. You aren’t damned.”

“Yes, I am. You have no idea what I’ve done.”

I shifted uneasily.

“And I wouldn’t want you to,” Devlin added, his arms snaking around me loosely. “My ends have always justified the means, no matter what they were. I’ve done great evil in the hope of averting worse evil. Sometimes it worked and sometimes not. Still, it’s likely that given the chance to do my life over, I’d do the same things, make the same choices. I’d find myself here, at this same point in time, a fallen king.”

“In case you’re wondering,” I said deliberately. “I’m waiting for you to add into your speech somewhere that you regret everything you did to me while you were king…um, ruler.”

“I regret hurting you,” Devlin said quickly. “Yet I don’t regret coming for you that night or taking you to Danial.” He looked up at me. “You might not have gone back to Danial after Theo went missing, if I hadn’t. Theoron might not be here. I can’t regret any action of mine that led to him being born.”

I didn’t reply, considering his words.

Devlin laid his head against my chest, and his arms tightened on me slightly. We lay there like that for a few moments, not speaking, then I slipped into sleep.

I woke sometime later when Devlin stirred. According to the bedside clock, it was almost dusk.

“I have only one regret,” Devlin said finally, propping himself up on his elbow, his expression intent.

“What’s that?” I said, covering my yawn with my hand.

“That it wasn’t me you found in your quarry that night,” Devlin said, kissing the back of my hand with cool lips. His golden eyes locked on mine, transfixing me, as he drew my hand away from my face.

He was going to kiss me. My lips parted as my breath caught in my throat.

Where to find Tara:

Goodreads Blog

Facebook Page

Twitter

Website

Email: tarafoxhall@gmail.com

My Review of The Bridge of Deaths by M.C.V.Egan

In Amelia Curzon Reviews, The Bridge of Deaths on August 23, 2012 at 1:09 am

Review of The Bridge of Deaths featured on Amelia Curzon's Blog - Carte BlancheA Fascinating Blend of Fact, Fiction, History, Romance and the Metaphysical

Based on an actual event, The Bridge of Deaths tells the story of one woman’s search to uncover the truth behind the death of her grandfather.  On August 15th, 1939, an English aircraft crashed in suspicious circumstances in Danish waters.  Aboard were 5 important passengers, amongst them the author’s grandfather. Two weeks later, World War Two broke out. This part is factual, as is the incredibly well-documented data revealed throughout the book. And the factual information ties in masterfully with the fictional characters and plot.

There are three main characters in the book: Bill, Maggie and Catalina. These characters are well-developed and likeable.

The fiction begins with Bill and Maggie meeting in the self-help section of a book store in London.  They are instantly attracted to each other and become close.  Bill tells Maggie of the nightmares he is experiencing involving the numbers on the side of a plane, visions of a bridge and the taste of cold salt water; all from a past life. Maggie suggests he try Past Life Regression. She then finds details of the air crash on the internet which leads her to contact the third character, Catalina.

Catalina, a Floridian woman, who has spent many years researching the crash herself – which also shows all the signs of a conspiracy – is delighted to find someone else who is interested in the mystery.  Maggie and Catalina agree to help each other and keep in touch via email and Skype calls, which also involves drinking several glasses of wine each, and smoking loads of cigarettes. The trio decide the best way to solve the enigma is through Bill’s regression, which in turn allows Bill to unravel his dreams. Between them they manage to put together the facts; before, during, and after the plane crash.

M.C.V.Egan has authored a book that screams years of dedicated research, to say nothing of how well-written it is. I was captured from the very first page. Throughout the book, I particularly enjoyed the Skype discussions between Maggie and Catalina which made me feel I was sitting there listening to them first hand, being part of the conversation, not reading about them in a book.  Although the narrative is extremely detailed in parts, I found myself wanting all the information I could get.  I was completely enthralled and found it difficult to put down. Though I did, through necessity, several times, but found the thread was easy to pick up again.

It is quite clear many years of love and hard work have gone into this work. It is also clear there is a very strong personal motive behind the writing of it. Having now finished reading, I would say those twenty years of research have unquestionably paid off.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book which is now taking its rightful place on my ‘to be read again soon’ shelf.

Without any hesitation, I am giving The Bridge of Deaths the full 5 stars.

The Bridge of Deaths is available to buy on Amazon US and Amazon UK

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