Sunday, November 30, 2014

Top 5

I can't believe Run has been out for almost six months. What a crazy six months it has been! It is surreal to think that I am in this place. A published author! Another book on the way! It is an absolute dream come true. The journey has not been without its ups and downs. I have learned a lot. I thought I knew things six months ago, truth is I didn't know anything. So here are a few things I have learned along the way. Hopefully they will be helpful to someone else on this crazy journey.

1. Join a writing community. Make friends with other writers. They are such a resource. Learn from their mistakes, and their successes. Get feedback on your work. Debate over little things: like passive voice, the Oxford comma, first person present tense, and the semi-colon, stress over it, and then learn that everyone has their own style and get comfortable with yours.

2. Read. Read a lot. I firmly believe that the best way to be a better writer is to be a devoted reader. Books are a passion. Read, learn, write.

3. Get a good editor. You cannot edit your own books. Trust me I tried. You will miss something. Get a good editor.

4. Get a good cover. This is the first thing readers see. Readers buy books based on the cover. You need a good one.

5. Learn the difference between constructive criticism and plain criticism. Learn from the constructive criticism and ignore the criticism. You will get bad reviews. It is bound to happen. My strategy? I read them. If there is something in them I can learn from great. If not I forget about them. In order to help me forget I read the bad reviews for some of my favorite books. Chocolate and Vanilla. Everyone doesn't like the same things. That's okay. Don't expect everyone to love your book or like the same things about it. Learn from the good. Ignore the bad. Always keep growing.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Carrots Review

4 out of 5 stars

When Shelby went into the grocery store to pick up carrots for dinner she didn't expect her life to change, but that is exactly what happens in Carrots. The wife and mother of two finds her life turned upside down when the grocery store is robbed and she is shot. When she wakes up in the hospital hearing everyone's thoughts and the only witness to the crime it is only the beginning of her adventure.

Carrots is fun, fast-paced and funny. Shelby is great main character who is smart and resourceful. Her interactions with her family are realistic and heartfelt. The adventure and suspense was enjoyable.

In all I found Carrots to be a quick, fun read and look forward to reading more from Colleen Helme.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Hide Review

5 out of 5 stars

Hide is a twisting, turning, pulse-pounding emotional journey. I could not put it down and read the majority of it in one day. Hide opens with a mass grave in an abandoned mental hospital. Detectives Bobby Dodge and D.D. Warren are horrified at what they find inside and how it might link to a previous case.

The characters are well developed and intriguing. The changing point of view is very well done in such a way that the reader is completely engaged. I really like Bobby Dodge and D.D. Warren both as lead characters. The best characters are ones that have such great mixtures of strengths and weaknesses.

The mystery is intriguing with lots of twists and I did not see the end coming! In all I would highly recommend Hide to fans of Mystery/Thriller/Suspense novels!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Run won the Indie Book of the Day Award!!

Wow I'm so excited! Run won the Indie Book of the Day Award! Whoever nominated Run - thank you so much!!

Also don't forget to pre-order your copy of Stand today!

The Bone Treaty Review

4 out of 5 stars

The Bone Treaty is fast-paced, well-written, and intriguing. The world building is great, and the characters are likeable.

I found the switching viewpoint to be a little confusing, and it would sometimes take me several paragraphs into each chapter to figure out who was speaking. I also found the love triangle to be a little forced - but I am not a big fan of "fated" love so that might just be me!

In all I really enjoyed The Bone Treaty and despite it being a long read I read it rather quickly. It is definitely exciting and sucks you into the action. I would recommend it for fans of YA and fantasy.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Spider Bones Review

3 out of 5 stars

Dr. Temperance Brennan is one of my favorite characters. I love how smart she is and how driven. I love that she is independent, but aware of her shortcomings. I would place her in my top five female protagonists. That said I found Spider Bones a bit predictable. Particularly in the two unrelated cases that magically become related by the end of the book. I hope that the next Temperance Brennan book doesn't fall into this same pattern.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

High Five Review

4 out of 5 stars

I just love this series of books. They are brain candy and sometimes I need a little brain candy. Grandma Mazur is hysterical - she makes me laugh out loud. The mystery was good with some great twists and turns, and the Ranger and Morelli triangle is intriguing. I really enjoyed in it and I can't wait for the next one in the series.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Beautiful Creatures Review

2 out of 5 stars

I liked the opening the Beautiful Creatures and the premise, but I found the relationship between Lena and Ethan to be a bit forced. I wasn't quite sure why exactly they were together other than fate. There wasn't anything objectionable about Beautiful Creatures, but I doubt I will read the sequels.
This is one where I actually liked the movie more than the book!

Monday, November 3, 2014

The Mirror Stage Review

4 out of 5 Stars

The Mirror Stage is a well-paced, intriguing debut novel. Ada Brandt is college professor who wants to forget her past. When a serial killer strikes a little too close to home Ada ends up pulled into the investigation by a FBI agent who won't take no for an answer. As Ada and the FBI dig deeper they uncover a case and killer that are anything but simple.

The Mirror Stage is a fast read - I read it in one afternoon. I really enjoyed J.J. Stone's writing style and pace. I think I would have liked a little more character development, but since this is the first book of a trilogy that may come later!

I would recommend this book to fans of the show Criminal Minds as it reminded me of an episode! I look forward to the next book.