Self-published Saturday: My Alien Life #bookreview

Self-published Saturday is my effort to help self-published/indie authors with marketing. Self-published/indie authors have to do it all, from cover design to editing to spreading the word about their book. If I can help even a little with marketing, I’m happy to do it. Below is my review of My Alien Life, a wonderful novella about a 9-year-old girl taken in by her elderly aunt after her father’s death.

BOOK DESCRIPTION

“My mother was a no-nonsense woman. If it wasn’t in the Bible or on Jerry Springer, then it couldn’t happen. Of course, there’s a lot of freaky stuff in the Good Book, with ladders to heaven and angels with animal faces and such. And crazy, muckraking talk shows probably aren’t the best yardstick for anything short of how depraved humans can be. But the point is that when she was abducted by aliens and impregnated with me, she had some trouble processing. I’m pretty sure Jerry actually covered that one, but I guess she missed the show that day. TiVo hadn’t been invented yet, just in case you’re wondering. Trust me, if it had, she’d have been all over that.” — Lynette, age 9

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

J. Martain is a coastal North Carolina native who spends most of her time questioning the way the universe and all the beings in it work. This often leads her down a deep research rabbit hole until she resurfaces with a new theory and a backstory to explain it. Her characters are sometimes human, sometimes not, but they prefer not to be judged on that criteria.

#BookReview

Abandoned by her mother, Lynette is raised and cared for by her devoted father, until the day he dies when she is 9.  Amongst a sea of uncaring relatives, her elderly Aunt Magnolia arrives and takes her home, with a deal that “Mags” will stay alive at least until Lynette is 16 and can raise herself.  This is a heart-touching novella that will induce smiles as well as tears. 

The writing of J. Martain absolutely captivated me throughout.  Every bit of dialogue and every descriptive word paints a vivid and imaginative picture that allows the reader to completely immerse themselves in Lynette’s world. Lynette’s strong, realistic, and precocious personality just jumps off the page. Mags’ no-nonsense manner does not hide her loving nature, and she begins showing Lynette how to care for herself at a very young age.  Together they are an unlikely pair—a woman in her 90s and a preteen, but they become a family.  This is a lifetime of a story in four chapters and I highly recommend it to anyone who loves stories with strong characters

I received a free copy of this book via BookSirens. My review is voluntary and my opinions are my own.

BUY LINKS

AMAZON | AMAZON UK

BEFORE YOU GO

*If you buy the book, please leave reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, as well as anywhere else you review books.  Some people feel very daunted by writing a review. Don’t worry. You do not have to write a masterpiece. Just a couple of lines about how the book made you feel will make the author’s day and help the book succeed. The more reviews a book has, the more Amazon will promote it.

*Please click on the “share” buttons below and share this book with your Twitter, Facebook, and WordPress followers. A little bit of help from all of us will help self-published/indie authors go a long way!

Self-Published Saturday: Christmas in ’45 #christmasfiction #fathersanddaughters

Self-published Saturday is my effort to help self-published and indie authors with marketing. Self-published/indie authors have to do it all, from cover design to editing to spreading the word about their book. If I can help even a little with marketing, I’m happy to do it. Below is my review of a wonderful Christmas novella, Christmas in ’45, by Indie author Mark W. Sasse.

BOOK REVIEW

On Christmas Eve, 1944, Roberta and her mother are notified that her father has been killed in the war. The following year, Roberta struggles with loss, grief, anger, and moving on. As Christmas 1945 approaches, she’s decided not to celebrate it at all. But love, patience, and a wonderful gesture could change everything.

This is a beautiful Christmas novella about loss and starting over again. It’s also about fathers, daughters, and grief. It will break your heart as you watch a little girl try to heal from losing her Dad. If you enjoy heart-touching Christmas stories, you will appreciate this novel, which explores the love of a father and the different forms it can take.

I received a free copy of this book via BookSirens. My review is voluntary and my opinions are my own.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mark W Sasse is a novelist and award-winning playwright and director. He vacillates on a daily basis between which genre of writing he enjoys the most. Luckily, he doesn’t have to choose! Sasse’s novels have been featured on curated sites such as Bookbub, Freebooksy, and EReaderNewsToday while his plays have been produced in New York, Penang, Columbus, Kuala Lumpur, and Sydney, Australia, among other places.

MARK’S SOCIAL MEDIA: FACEBOOK | WEBSITE

BUY LINKS: AMAZON | AMAZON UK

BEFORE YOU GO

*If you buy the book(s), please leave reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, as well as anywhere else you review books.  Some people feel very daunted by writing a review. Don’t worry. You do not have to write a masterpiece. Just a couple of lines about how the book made you feel will make the author’s day and help the book succeed. The more reviews a book has, the more Amazon will promote it.

*Please click on the “share” buttons below and share these books with your Twitter, Facebook, and WordPress followers. A little bit of help from all of us will help self-published/indie authors go a long way!

Self-Published Saturday: Saving Schrodinger’s Cat

Self-Published Saturday is my effort to help Self-Published/Indie authors with marketing. These authors have to do it all, from cover design to editing to marketing. If I can help even a little bit with promotion, I’m happy to do it. This week’s feature is Saving Schrodinger’s Cat, a completely clever time travel novel.

BOOK DESCRIPTION

In the 25th century, deep under the Earth’s shattered surface, the dying remnants of humankind live in a dwindling Colony devoid of Nature and only one can travel to the past to save humanity from its dark fate.

Clinging to life underground, after a cataclysmic all-out nuclear war, the remains of the human race are desperate for a way to change the past. Harnessing the power of an artificial wormhole, their only hope to avert global annihilation is to travel back in time and alter the discovery of nuclear fission.

Humanity’s future rests on the unlikely shoulders of Proteus. Born with a unique genetic mutation, scientists discover that he is the only one capable of surviving the ravages of time-travel. After decades of preparation, Proteus is sent backwards to early 20th century London… but Time doesn’t want the past to change and it pushes back.

To complete his mission, Proteus must manipulate the course of history, all the while battling enemy agents and avoiding the forces of Time, if he’s ever going to save the future from the past.

BOOK REVIEW

Proteus is born with a genetic mutation, one that makes him an outcast in 25th Century Society and will eventually kill him. That is, until scientists discover that people with this mutation can successfully travel in time. Proteus heads back to Cambridge University, 1921, in order to change the past and stop the devastation that has destroyed his world and forced everyone underground. He finds himself at Oxford, trying to delay the discovery of nuclear fission.

Whenever I start to review a time travel novel, I usually warn everyone that I am extra hard on time travel fiction, as it is my favorite genre. No need for warnings this time, as I loved this one! Time Travel novels must have a method of travel, and this one uses 25th Century wormhole technology. And of course there must be rules of time travel set by the author. One of the rules in this novel is that those attempting time travel into the past will experience cell death and will not survive–except for a select few. Only people with a certain genetic mutation can go back in time and survive. Another, and probably the most important, rule is that if you try to change the past, time will push back, so watch out!.

Our protagonist, Proteus, is trying desperately to change the past in order to avoid a nuclear holocaust, and time is resisting at every turn. Will Proteus be able to delay the nuclear bomb? And what effect will it all have on Proteus himself and the world he left behind? This is a time travel adventure that is both captivating and thought-provoking. It is also an action-packed scientific thriller, as Proteus battles with agents who are trying to steal the research that he is trying to sabotage! Proteus’s first impressions of early 20th Century London are entertaining and kept me reading on. His ability to weave himself into society is entertaining. His subterfuge and interactions with famous scientists take this book to the next level. It’s a wild ride, with Time as almost its own character in the book. If you like time travel, science, and thrillers, check this one out.

I received an electronic copy of this book via BookSirens. My review is voluntary and my opinions are my own. Because I liked the book so much I also requested an audiobook version, and I will update this review once I’ve listened to it.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mark Jenkins is a British-American author of speculative fiction — primarily sci-fi, thrillers, and historical fiction. He is a physician and life-long seeker of knowledge, who thrives on deep dives. Mark is as excited by the challenge of exploring a new subject in a book, as he is by learning to solo-climb glaciated stratovolcanoes — and centers these moments of discovery in his fictional works. He is the author of Klickitat – and other stories (speculative mountaineering fiction tales), and the novel, Saving Schrödinger’s Cat (Sci-fi/time travel/historical fiction).

Mark is an avid cyclist, open water swimmer, and admirer of seals. He currently lives in the Pacific Northwest where he and his wife, Joanna, enjoy hiking, climbing, stand-up paddle boarding (when Mark can stay upright), photography, and quiet walks in nature.

MARK’S WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK

BUY LINKS

AMAZON | AMAZON UK

BEFORE YOU GO

*If you buy the book(s), please leave reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, as well as anywhere else you review books.  Some people feel very daunted by writing a review. Don’t worry. You do not have to write a masterpiece. Just a couple of lines about how the book made you feel will make the author’s day and help the book succeed. The more reviews a book has, the more Amazon will promote it.

*Please click on the “share” buttons below and share these books with your Twitter, Facebook, and WordPress followers. A little bit of help from all of us will help self-published authors go a long way!

Self-Published Saturday #Paranormal #Historicalfiction #KnightsTemplar

I know it’s Sunday, but I’m late with SPS because I have the grandkids this weekend. I’m about to drive them back home, which is a 4.5 hour round trip for me. Here is SPS, and sorry it is late.

Self-Published Saturday is my effort to share self-published/indie books with the readers of my blog in hopes that they will share them with their readers. Self-published/Indie authors have to do it all, and any help with marketing is crucial.

BOOK DESCRIPTION

Winner of the Firebird Book Award for Fiction.
Following the traumatic end of the Knights Templar, a remnant band of knights in hiding attempt to make a new life for themselves in the eastern Byzantine Empire. Chaperoning merchants and pilgrims through perilous lands in the midst of a brewing war, their mettle is put to the test on a daily basis. However, this assignment is unlike any other they’ve taken. Braving infamous clans of assassins and an encroaching army of Ottoman forces, they must escort a girl to safety during a time when their faith is shaken and the girl proves to be more than what she seems. Brought to you by the award-winning author of The Angels of Resistance and the Redeem the Knight Trilogy.

BOOK REVIEW

Torn Asunder is set in the early 1300s after the Knights Templar have been persecuted and destroyed by the King of France. It is about a band of surviving Templars who are just trying to get by and stay alive. They take a job to escort a girl to her cousin, but soon realize she is more than she seems.

This book overall is a unique and solid effort. The character of Parisa is wonderful, and the magical realism/paranormal she brings to the story really lifts it up. But Parisa is not really introduced right away and the story moves slowly until she is. At times I felt the plot dragged a bit and I got a little bit weary as we went from battle to battle without much of a break. I did not connect with the other characters as much as Parisa until near the end of the book. But the idea of a surviving band of Knights Templar is certainly intriguing, and the ending was wonderfully done. Overall, this is a solid story with a great ending. I give it 3.6 stars overall, rounded up to four stars.

Anyone interested in the Knights Templar and magical realism should check this one out.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

An award-winning indie dark fantasy and science fiction author from Long Island, David V. Mammina’s novels contain a solid storyline, deep character development, and twists and turns that can challenge any reader. Apart from writing page-turners, he also teaches history to middle school students with learning disabilities. Themes of his work include the redemption of fallen heroes, good versus evil, and the unity of those split by their differences in the face of supernatural adversity. Set in post-apocalypse or dystopian eras, fantasy realms, and the present day, Mammina can satisfy any and all tastes in genre fiction.

BUY LINKS

AMAZON | AMAZON UK

BEFORE YOU GO

*If you buy the book(s), please leave reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, as well as anywhere else you review books.  Some people feel very daunted by writing a review. Don’t worry. You do not have to write a masterpiece. Just a couple of lines about how the book made you feel will make the author’s day and help the book succeed. The more reviews a book has, the more Amazon will promote it.

*Please click on the “share” buttons below and share these books with your Twitter, Facebook, and WordPress followers. A little bit of help from all of us will help self-published authors go a long way!

Self-Published Saturday: Books on Sale!

Here are some great books from two indie authors that are on sale today!

First up are two books from award-winning historical novelist Gail Meath: Songbird, which is the first book in the Jax Diamond mystery series, Framed, which is the second book in the series, and Fire Blossom, a historical western. Click on the photos to buy these books on Amazon.

See all of Gail’s books on her Amazon page.

Next up is a wonderful book of Christian poetry with accompanying photographs from amazing Christian poet Louise Belanger.

See Louise’s books on her Amazon page.

Self-Published Saturday: A Class Coveted by Susie Murphy

Self-Published Saturday is my effort to help Self-Published/Indie authors with marketing. These authors have to do it all, from cover design to editing to marketing. If I can help even a little bit with marketing, I’m happy to do it. This week’s feature is A Class Coveted by Susie Murphy, the fourth book in the A Matter of Class series.

BOOK DESCRIPTION

It’s 1836, and Bridget and Cormac have arrived, full of hope, to the city of Boston with their growing family. However, as they adjust to domestic life together for the first time, they face anti-Irish sentiment from the local Americans, as well as a threat to their happiness from a much closer source.

Cormac undertakes the challenging search for his missing sister, Bronagh. He is determined to do all he can to put the broken pieces of his family back together, but the appalling truth he uncovers will shake him to his core.

Meanwhile, as Emily grows up in this new country, she realises how her parents’ past actions will affect her entire future and she begins to covet that which is no longer within her reach. When she receives an unexpected proposition, will she be able to resist its temptation, despite the untrustworthy nature of the person behind it?

A Class Coveted is the fourth book in Susie Murphy’s historical fiction series A Matter of Class. The story will continue in the fifth book, A Class Reunited.

BOOK REVIEW

A Class Coveted is the fourth book in the A Matter of Class series. I would recommend reading the books in order. Book One begins in Ireland with Cormac as a stablehand and Bridget as an heiress to a great estate, and their story continues to develop and progress throughout this saga. In this installment, Bridget, Cormac, their daughter Emily, and Cormac’s sister Orlaith have come to America searching for Cormac’s sister Bronagh. Upon arrival in Boston, they are shocked at the discrimination and outright shunning of the Irish people, who were often denied jobs and lodging just for being from Ireland. As they struggle to survive with dwindling funds, they continue their search for Bronagh. Orlaith also begins to try and make her own living as a midwife.

This is another captivating novel in this series and a fascinating look at Boston in 1836. The characters and their story still grab my attention four books in. We also learn more about Orlaith than we have before, and we watch the coming of age of Emily, who becomes a main character by the end of the book. Ultimately the story ends on a cliffhanger and several plotlines are still open, but the author promises us Book five in a note at the end. These are characters the reader will enjoy getting to know, and the author is great at creating captivating plotlines. Fans of historical romantic adventures will enjoy this one.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Susie Murphy is an Irish historical fiction author. She loves historical fiction so much that she often wishes she had been born two hundred years ago. Still, she remains grateful for many aspects of the modern age, including women’s suffrage, electric showers and pizza. Susie has published four novels in her A Matter of Class series, a sweeping romance saga which begins in Ireland in 1828.

To find out more, visit www.susiemurphywrites.com, where you can join the Susie Murphy Readers’ Club and receive a collection of six free short stories which tie in with A Matter of Class.

BUY THE WHOLE SERIES ON AMAZON

BUY THE WHOLE SERIES ON AMAZON UK

*Kindle Unlimited subscribers can read the whole series for free.

*If you buy the book, please leave reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, as well as anywhere else you review books.  Some people feel very daunted by writing a review. Don’t worry. You do not have to write a masterpiece. Just a couple of lines about how the book made you feel will make the author’s day and help the book succeed. The more reviews a book has, the more Amazon will promote it.

*Please click on the “share” buttons below and share these books with your Twitter, Facebook, and WordPress followers. A little bit of help from all of us will help self-published authors go a long way!

Self-Published Spotlight: Forever Silenced by Richard Cohen

*Not a book review

Self-Published Spotlight is my effort to help indie/self-published authors with the huge task of marketing their books. Self-published authors have to do it all, and if I can help even a little, I’m happy to do so. Below is a spotlight of Forever Silenced, a psychological thriller by Richard Cohen.

BOOK DESCRIPTION

Willem Gerhardt is a renowned psychologist with the most prestigious recognitions.
He is also the adopted son of the widely known, Elizabeth Gerhardt—sole heiress of
a billionaire. Up until now, Dr. Gerhardt has lived a “rich life” in every way, or so
it seems.

When a young patient claims she was sexually assaulted, a local farmer is formally
charged. But days after his acquittal, he is found dead.

Dr. Gerhardt’s life has come full circle upon returning to the very same place he was born—
East Texas State Penitentiary. Charged with murder, he is forced to face the depths of
a complex past.

Is blood truly thicker than water? What significance do memories really hold? Is a flower
just “a flower”? Are psychics real? Can anyone be trusted?

A complex page-turner with numerous twists, FOREVER SILENCED takes readers
on a thought-provoking and forever memorable, heartwarming journey

BUY LINKS

Amazon|Amazon UK

Self-Published Saturday: The Modern Christ

Self-Published Saturday is my effort to help self-published/indie authors. These authors have to do it all, from editing to cover design to marketing. If I can help even a little bit with the marketing, I’m happy to do it. Below is my review of The Modern Christ by Dan Hambright. It’s a modern take on the story of Jesus.

BOOK REVIEW

The Modern Christ is the story of Jesus, but set in modern times.  Imagine if Jesus was born to Mary in our time, and then imagine it’s set in America.  In this retelling of the story of Christ, Jesus is born to Mary in the 1980s in a car dealership in Bethlehem, PA. It is the exact story of Jesus with a modern twist, but contains the same message of a virgin birth, the Son of God, and His sacrifice. 

One thing that was important to me about this book was that the basic story of Christ was not changed.  The people around him didn’t change either.  Mary, Joseph, the apostles, John the Baptist, and even a couple of presidents with the last name of Herod are all in the book.  It’s wild to see Jesus with a cell phone and riding in cars, but the heart of the story is still there.  It’s proof you can put Jesus in any time and the result will be the same.  He will serve as a sacrifice for the sins of the world. I think it’s a unique perspective that could make Him seem more relatable to the people of today. After all in His day, He was modern. This is a thought-provoking take on the story of Jesus.  The story of Christ is always going to get five stars from me. Highly recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dan Hambright believes the best books are the ones that stay with you long after you’ve turned the final page, and as an author, he strives to influence his readers in the same way with each of his novels. When he’s not writing, you can find him hiking through the state parks of Oklahoma, playing sports with his son, having deep, philosophical conversations with his daughter, or spending time with his beautiful and amazing wife. He lives in Yukon, Oklahoma with his wife and two children.

BUY LINKS

AMAZON US

AMAZON UK

*Kindle Unlimited subscribers can read the book for free.

*If you buy the book, please leave reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, as well as anywhere else you review books.  Some people feel very daunted by writing a review. Don’t worry. You do not have to write a masterpiece. Just a couple of lines about how the book made you feel will make the author’s day and help the book succeed. The more reviews a book has, the more Amazon will promote it.

*Please click on the “share” buttons below and share these books with your Twitter, Facebook, and WordPress followers. A little bit of help from all of us will help self-published authors go a long way!

Self-Published Saturday: The View From Here

Self-Published Saturday is my effort to help Indie and Self-Published authors promote their books. Self-Published/Indie authors have to do it all, from editing to cover design to marketing. If I can help even a little bit with the overwhelming task of marketing, I’m happy to do it. Below is my review of an imaginative science fiction adventure, The View From here by Leon Stevens.

BOOK DESCRIPTION

What would you do if you found yourself on or in another world? Do you have the skills and knowledge needed to survive or to make sense of what you see?

Thomas sets out on a hike he has done many times before. Taking only what he needs for the three or four hours he expects to be gone, he passes a vehicle in the parking lot. The handwritten note on the dashboard read: Not Abandoned. The view at the end of the trail was not what he expected—neither were the friendships.

Two people with adventurous spirits, heading off into the unknown with only their physical fitness and combined knowledge to get them through everything they may encounter.

How far could you make it?

BOOK REVIEW

This is a fascinating science fiction novella that explores the idea of other worlds or dimensions that can be reached from Earth.  The main characters Thomas and April find a new dimension or world separately while hiking, meet up there, and decide to go exploring.  They soon find themselves relying on their wits to stay alive and solve the puzzles of this world.

This story will keep you spellbound as Thomas and April navigate a new world, learn its special properties, and use their combined knowledge to survive.  It is a tiny bit reminiscent of Andy Weir’s Project Hail Mary in that they have to improvise and learn to communicate with another species using only math and science.  The world-building is fantastic, and the author expertly conveys the beauty of the scenery with vivid word pictures.   I liked the fact that Thomas was in his sixties and still out there exploring and taking risks.  This novella feels like the introduction to a series, and I hope that is true. Those who love science fiction and love to solve puzzles will enjoy this one!

My only criticism is I would like to see more color on the cover to make it more eye-catching for readers scrolling through millions of books on Amazon and other sites.

I downloaded this book on Kindle Unlimited, where subscribers can read it for free.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Leon Stevens is an author, composer, guitarist, songwriter, and an artist, with a Bachelor of Music and Education. He published his first book of poetry, Lines by Leon: Poems, Prose, and Pictures in January 2020, followed by a book of original classical guitar compositions, Journeys, and a short story collection of science fiction/post-apocalyptic tales called The Knot at the End of the Rope and Other Short Stories. His newest publication is the novella, The View from Here, which is a continuation of one of his short stories. He is currently working on a new collection of poetry titled, A Wonder of Words.

Leon’s Social Media

Twitter
Instagram

BUY LINKS

Amazon US

Amazon UK

*If you read the book, please leave reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, as well as anywhere else you review books.  Some people feel very daunted by writing a review. Don’t worry. You do not have to write a masterpiece. Just a couple of lines about how the book made you feel will make the author’s day and help the book succeed. The more reviews a book has, the more Amazon will promote it.

*Please click on the “share” buttons below and share these books with your Twitter, Facebook, and WordPress followers. A little bit of help from all of us will help self-published authors go a long way!