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Review: Witch Hunt by SM Reine

I don’t read a lot of mysteries, but I’ve been wanting to read something by SM Reine for a while. When I saw I could get a couple of her trilogies for free, then purchase the audio book, I knew it was a great chance to do so. I was in between books, so it was perfect timing.

Preternatural Affairs is about Cèsar Hawke, a witch, and his investigations into the darker side of magic. In the world that Reine created magic users are still in the closet. Demons have hidden cities that normal people can’t find unless they are invited in, and witches use herbs, stones, and circles to create some powerful spells.

It’s a rich world. In this first book she doesn’t delve into the magical side that much, most of it is centered around figuring out who killed the girl in his bathtub. But it takes a few spells, and some other magical help to get to the bottom of things.

I loved the fact that this was from the POV of a man. So many urban fantasy novels are from the POV of women right now, and it was nice to get a change. She writes him pretty well, and I loved that he’s a strong personality with a female partner with an equally strong personality. They play off one another well.

All in all, if you like paranormal, and you like mystery, this is a good series. And I fully expect it will just get better.

Also the guy who reads it has a really smooth, sexy voice.

And that’s my five.

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Posted by on August 21, 2017 in Review

 

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The time has come….

The week is drawing to a close, and, as promised, here I am.

I love reading, and I have a horrible habit of filling my kindle with books, many of which I might not get to read. But every time I open the cover I know there will be something amazing to find inside. And I want to share that experience, that love of finding diamonds in the rough among the countless books. And maybe I hope some of my stories find their way into your favorites as well.

So, tomorrow (4/23) is the last day of the 99 cent sale. You can also find Witch’s Sacrifice and Witch’s Curse on that list. You’ll also find some boxed sets, and a number of novels that look very interesting.

I’d also like to let you know about The Scarab Necklace and Footprints which are free this weekend. The Scarab Necklace is a look into what makes us tick, and what drives us insane. Footprints is about a young man dealing with a tragedy in his life, while also running from something in the woods.

And, as always, all of my stories are available in KU.

 
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Posted by on April 22, 2017 in On Writing

 

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All the books!

giveaway 3It’s time for a HUGE give away. If you go HERE you can download more than fifty free books from various scifi, fantasy, and horror authors. There are even a few super hero books, and a couple YA books.

My book, Witch’s Sacrifice, is also available for free. Get it now, this is probably one of the few times I will offer it for free.

You can’t go wrong just by checking it out. Plus you can sign up for their roflcopter and try to win a free kindle. More free stuff! I know, it’s amazing!

 
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Posted by on August 24, 2016 in On Writing

 

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What are you reading?

I’ve been on a reading kick lately. readingMost of the books in the picture I read in the last couple weeks. I found a series I loved, started reading, and couldn’t stop.

The “Little Flame” series is an urban fantasy set on a rock star tour bus. It gets a little sexy at times, and there are a lot of great kick ass scenes. I’m half way through the series and each book gets better and better.

A few of the others are short stories from Annie Bellet. I love short stories. When they are really good they give you a glimpse of a world that makes you want to come back for more. All of Annie Bellet’s books do that for me. I love the fact that each one of her short stories is set in a different time and place giving you that window into new worlfs and ways of life. All but one of them had elements of fantasy though.

I just picked up her Once Upon a Curse, a short story dark fairytale collection. Can’t wait to read that.

What are you reading?

 
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Posted by on June 1, 2016 in On Writing

 

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Ban them all!!!!

This week is banned books week, dedicated to thousands of books that have been banned throughout libraries, schools, and colleges. Sometimes books banned in an entire country.

You can find my top 5 banned books reading list here, and my thoughts on each book. Also a bit about my thoughts on banning books in general. However… I’m a writer not a talker so I needed to write about why I find the idea of banning a book so offensive.

The first video I clicked on about banned book top fives this morning was from a woman who said she agreed with the ban on a comic book that I actually loved. She noted the sexual situations, violence, and nudity and said she agreed. It wasn’t appropriate for children.

My question… Who’s child? Just because you find something offensive, does that give you the right to tell my child they can’t read it?

I took a look at the reasons for banning a lot of the books (books that are still being banned today, btw) and one thing became increasingly clear… Most of the titles weren’t being banned to protect the children, they were banned to protect the ideals of the adults.

Take Harry Potter, for example. It was banned because it “promotes witchcraft.” Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that it did. So? There are people in the USA that are Wiccan and do practice a form of witchcraft, and they probably share that love with their children. Is that wrong? Some would say it is. Others would say inflicting Christianity on a child who is incapable if telling fact from fiction at a young age is wrong. Are either of them right? Both would say the other is wrong and neither would see their own bias they suffer from.

Harry Potter was banned because some parent saw it as an attack against their personal beliefs and was afraid that their child would turn away from them. This bothers me. If your beliefs aren’t strong enough to stand against a children’s book than they aren’t very strong beliefs and maybe you should reconsider them yourself.

Others were banned for incouraging violence, or homosexuality. M.E. Kerr was told that the girls in her book had to turn away from homosexuality at the end in order to get past the censors. I’m glad she wrote her books anyway because “Is That You, Miss Blue” had a big impact on me as I was growing up.

In some cases banning books serves to promote one life style over another. We can’t have our children growing up thinking it’s okay to be gay, or promiscuous, or practice another religion.

But with each banning the case against the people who would do this rises. If your ideas and beliefs can’t stand up to a little scrutiny then they cannot stand!

On the other side of the coin: by saying children can’t read a book because that book will change them and encourage them to do x, y, or z, you are saying that child is weak willed and incapable of making choices in their own. If you honestly think Harry Potter will make your child believe they can cast a spell and turn someone into a frog then you really don’t think highly of children.

Playing pretend, imagination, exploration of different ideas and themes encourages young minds to grow and expand, their horizons to widen. Just remember that most scientists were inspired by star trek and science fiction. That’s why you are probably reading this on a smart phone right now. The concepts for smart phones and cells phones were first invented by star trek writers.

“But, sex!” the banners cry.

Children are not asexual. Some boys look up little girls skirts. Children play doctor, masterbate, and sneak peeks. Yes they are still trying to figure out themselves, and yes they should be protected from inappropriate situations, however books are not going to hurt them. On the contrary, books might help them by showing them what is appropriate and what isn’t and giving them encouragement to speak up when bad things happen.

Part of growing up is discovering your sexuality, and learning about yourself, and your body. Books can be a safe way to explore those thoughts and emotions. By restricting books you’re actually making it more likely that a child will act on those thoughts instead of just reading about it.

“But, homosexual agenda!” 😥 Just, no.

“But, violence!” Okay now you just sound like the same people crying about video games causing violence. Multiple studies prove this is dead wrong. Any aggressive tendencies they have are linked to frustration, not the violence on the screen.

Isn’t it better to teach children how to deal with frustration? To give them examples of both the right and the wrong way of doing things so they can have the knowledge to do the right thing and why it is the right thing?

Lastly I would just like to add that reading a wide variety of books in multiple genres, about various points of views promotes critical thinking, tolerance understanding, and creativity.

Moral of the story: banning books should be in a case by case for a child, not a school.

 
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Posted by on September 30, 2015 in On Writing

 

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Around the Web

The internet donated over 800 copies of banned books to teens in South Carolina.

Judging books by their cover just got a little more scientific.

3D printing glass? 

15 scifi books you should definitely read.

‘Guilty pleasures’ and ‘the Kindle closet’: ‘The real book versus ebook list’

Top 100 Sci-fi list filled with books “shockingly offensive”…. As a note, I don’t agree with this woman’s article, but thought others might find it interesting, or worth discussing.

Garbageman rescues books to create a community library.

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Remember that “Witch’s Sacrifice” is on sale for $0.99 for the rest of the weekend. If you haven’t checked it out yet now is your chance. It won’t be on sale again until the third book comes out sometime around the end of the year.

Have a wonderful day ya’ll.

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2015 in News

 

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Reading

The last two months I’ve read a lot of books. It’s made me quite happy, so I thought I’d share them with you.

Fortunately the Milk by Neil Gaiman

A very short, humorous read about a father trying to get milk for his children. Fortunately the milk is there right when he needs it to deal with time traveling stegosauruses and pirates.

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

An amazing narrative about Kvoth, an unassuming bar keep that once had a magnificent life. Or so he says.
I listened to this on audiobook and I liked the narrator. He does great voices for each of the character and really helps you get into the story. Plus there are so many twists and turns to follow, and it’s such a long book, that I was happier listening to it then reading it on my phone.

Tiny Quest Staring Princess Sassafras by Matt Youngmark

Cute little paperback I picked up at Norwescon with nice illustrations. It’s a fun read, and a nice collectible.

Zombocalypse Now by Mat Youngmark

A terrible read in the fact that I KEEP DYING! The zombies just like my brains I guess. Great twist on the “Choose your own adventure” style of writing with 70+ endings, only 5 of which you survive in.

Hidden Shadows by SR Gilmore

A girl with no magical powers has to help a sexy guy from another plane of existence try to figure out why the hell there is a baby dragon dropped on his back step. The world building is great, and the tension between the two main characters is very well done.

Murder of Crows by Annie Belle

This is book two in the 20 sided sorceress series. I really liked the first so I picked up the second. There is romance, but I really enjoyed the gamer (table top and RPG) references.

Shaman Tales 1: South Coast by Nathan Lowell which I actually listened to on Podiobooks. It’s also on amazon.

I loved Nathan Lowell’s clipper ship stories so much that I was thrilled to find out he’d written this one. It’s about a fishing village and how they are trying to bring in enough fish to satisfy the corporate planets quota. Lots about commerce, efficiency, fishing, and just the every day life of traders. And then there is the shaman…

PS. If you like chose your own adventure, or text based games, you should look at this week’s Humble Mobile Bundle. It includes some great interactive stories that I’ve been playing in my spare time. You get to read and hand at the same time! https://www.humblebundle.com/mobile

 
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Posted by on April 22, 2015 in On Writing

 

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