Tuesday, March 31, 2015

2015 March Reading List

Half the World by Joe Abercrombie – I went back and read my thoughts on the first book in the series, and it looks like Abercrombie fixed everything that was “wrong” and got it right this time around. There are some great scenes in there—a good read as a whole. My only complaint is we didn’t get Yarvi’s POV, and I was looking forward to that. 4/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

The Perils of Pleasure by Julie Anne Long – Not as enjoyable as the other two books I’ve read from this series. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

Glitch by Hugh Howey – Well written but it felt like it was only the beginning of the story and the most interesting part was missing. Plus, I kept getting flashbacks of Real Steel. 3/5 stars Amazon

The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead – After reading the first three books in the Bloodlines series and coming to a conclusion that wrapped things nicely for me, I decided to wait until all the other three books in the series were out before reading them. Now that I did read them all three in a row, I don’t remember what the first book was about. What I do remember is that despite Adrian being my favorite character from both Bloodlines and Vampire Academy series, I didn’t care for his POV at all. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

Silver Shadows by Richelle Mead – I have issues with scenarios in which the characters are locked up and brainwashed, so it was difficult for me to enjoy this book. Plus, towards the end, the plot gets really crazy. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

The Ruby Circle by Richelle Mead – By now, the big exposition chucks, especially the ones retelling events from the past, became too much so I skipped a lot. It all ended wrapped in a bow and highly unlikely. I enjoyed the first three books in the series better, but as a whole, VA is better written and makes more sense even though Rose used to drive me nuts. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

The Robot Chronicles edited by David Gatewood – I only truly enjoyed 4 out of 14 stories. Several felt unfinished. And why can’t there be any happy robot stories? 3/5 stars Amazon

Shadows for Silence in the Forests of Hell by Brandon Sanderson – An unfortunate title that only makes sense after you read the story. I felt a bit let down by the ending, but it was a good read. 4/5 stars Amazon

Glass Houses by Rachel Caine – I didn’t care for the bullying, all characters behaved irrationally at one point or another, and the romance was awkward, but I did get caught up by the action in the story. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

Blue Bloods by Melissa de la Cruz – Sex and the City without the humor and utterly boring. 2/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

Castle in the Sky by Dianna Wynne Jones – Howl’s Moving Castle remains my favorite, but this was fun too. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

Like No Other Lover by Julie Anne Long – It would have been more interesting if the heroes would have spent less time apart. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

Since the Surrender by Julie Anne Long – This was slightly better, though it puzzles me someone as rich as the Everseas kept allowing commoners to marry into their family. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

I Kissed an Earl by Julie Anne Long – Highly improbable for anything like this to happen, not one of my favorite despite having a plot for a change, though the banter was fun. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

How the Marquess Was Won by Julie Anne Long – Love me a smart woman any day, a bit of a Cinderella tale, and a rather predictable plot. Loved the cat! 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

A Notorious Countess Confesses by Julie Anne Long – A bit of a hit and miss this one and the vicar left me cold, though it was probably expected. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

It Happened One Midnight by Julie Anne Long – While portrayed rather silly, with a few exceptions, in the previous books, Jonathan is my favorite character in the series. *grins* 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

This was an atypical month for me, but I'm in the middle of writing book 2 in Broken People series, and when I do that, I find it hard to focus on any "heavy" reading so I'm stuck with romance and YA. Shrug.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Indie Friday Feature

There's a lot of talk about how indie writers support each other, or if they don't, they should, so this is my bit of support brought to our cause. I'm starting a new blog feature called "Indie Friday". As the title suggests, it will be a series of guest posts written by self-published writers in which they talk about one of their books.

Schedule: every Friday

Eligible Participants: self-published writers

Featured Works: novels published in the past 12 months

Accepted Genres: fiction only, sci fi and fantasy preferred, no erotica and religious books

Guest Post Guidelines:

- format - essay touching several of the following points:
  • What is your book about? Tell me in your own words, not the book description.
  • How did you get the idea for the book?
  • What does your book bring new to its genre?
  • What struggles did you encounter while writing this book?
  • What was the most satisfying moment while writing this book?
  • What do you hope to accomplish with this book?
- length: 400 - 1,000 words

How it works:

1. Send me an email with the Subject: Indie Friday: [Book title] by [Author name] at ioanacvisan[at]gmail[dot]com.
Include Goodreads link and a link where I can read a sample.
I reserve the right to decline any requests concerning books I don't find fit for this blog.

2. If I accept your request, I'll tell you the next available date or we can agree on a different one (still a Friday).
Two days before the scheduled date or sooner, you need to email me:
- guest post text (.doc or .rtf file or pasted in the body of the email)
- book cover (.jpg or .png)
- author website and/or blog link
- book purchase links
- twitter account or other social media presence

Once the post goes live, you will be notified via Twitter or email.

Each post will be tweeted to 20,000 Twitter followers, shared with 1,800 Facebook fans and 260 Google+ followers.

I'm looking forward to hearing from you.

Check the books featured on Indie Friday here.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Story: Fata Racheta

Well, well, well, Rocket Girl made it into print. The Romanian version of Rocket Girl is included in Romanian magazine Paradox, issue 25-26.

How did it happen? Simple. Mrs. Genescu asked me if I wanted to submit a story for the magazine, and I thought Rocket Girl would be a perfect fit. The English version is included in The Nightingale Circus short story collection.

You can check out this issue's table of contents on the Paradox magazine website. I assume a pdf file will be added at some point, like there is for the previous issues, but I don't know when.

I'm very proud of my not-so-little girl. You can read more about Fei Lin in Broken People novel, and she will also make an appearance in the second book in the series that I'm writing right now.

Monday, March 16, 2015

The Weight of a Wing Release Day Blitz Invitation

Attention book bloggers!

The Weight of a Wing will be released on April 16.

If you're interested in posting a book promo post on your blog on release day, please fill in this form.

A giveaway will be included in the post for the readers to enter, and the book bloggers will also receive free review copies upon request.

Readers, you're all invited to join The Weight of a Wing Facebook Release Party event. We'll talk about books, toss in some giveaways, and hopefully have a lot of fun.

Thank you all!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Librex Book Fair 2015

And it was Librex book fair 2015. Because of the rain and a funeral, I only made it to Palas on Sunday, late in the afternoon when some of the participants were already preparing to close. Plenty of books still, but I didn't find the offer as rich and diverse as expected. It particularly felt like the sci fi and fantasy genre was poorly represented. Nemira didn't have the one title I was interested in, I guess they're saving it for Final Frontier book fair, both Trei and Paladin had brought only a handful of SFF books, and for once we didn't find anything interesting at Corint. It doesn't mean we didn't buy anything. We returned home with a bag full of books that should last me for a couple of weeks, but the entire experience was rather disappointing.

Friday, March 13, 2015

The Impaler Legacy Omnibus 1 Year Anniversary Giveaway

It's been a year since The Impaler Legacy Omnibus was released. Since then, it's been part of a blog tour, received positive reviews, and it's been re-edited in January when my budget finally allowed it.

While the novellas and short stories included in the omnibus edition were first published separately, together they can be read as a stand alone novel. This was my first big self-published book, and after spending a whole year in the company of these characters, they will always hold a special place in my heart.

Yes, it's a book about vampires, but before you turn up your nose and move on know that there are no vampires in Romania, there's no Dracula, and the heroine doesn't fall in love with a vampire. This is not paranormal romance, YA, or erotica. It's a political thriller with vampires. Intrigued yet?

To celebrate the one year anniversary, I'm not dropping the price, but I'm offering you the chance to win free copies in a giveaway. Well, two giveaways actually. One is here on the blog, and you can enter it via the form below. The other one is taking place on BookLikes where you can find the book listed in the Paranormal/Fantasy/Action and Adventure categories. Both giveaways will be open until the end of March. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, March 9, 2015

The Weight of a Wing Thunderclap Campaign

It's time to give Thunderclap another try, this time to help spread the word about The Weight of a Wing book release. (By the way, today I received the art work for the second book in the series, and it's gorgeous.)

So, if you have a Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr account, please go to the link below and join the campaign for free. If you do, a message announcing the new release will be automatically posted to your account on April 16.

Thank you!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

2015 February Reading List

Between the Devil and Ian Eversea by Julie Anne Long – Well, yeah, once a year I do happen to read some romance too. I got tricked into getting this one because of the cover, silly me, and the story wasn’t that bad, though I didn’t care all that much for the heroine. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository 

What I Did For a Duke by Julie Anne Long – Of course I had to know what it led to the events in the book above, he he, and it was fun. Actually, it’s a better story than the other one despite the awful cover. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository 

Carswell’s Guide to Being Lucky by Marissa Meyer – Rather fun, too bad it was so short. 3/5 stars

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel – A bit too literary for my taste, and the sci fi element is way too weak. If I cared to read about Hollywood starts’ lives, I’d get a gossip magazine. I don’t need to get that type of info from my sci fi books. Hmpf. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository 

The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman – Not quite sold on the central idea of the library, but other than that it was an enjoyable enough ride. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository 

Red Rising by Pierce Brown – Rather violent, but well written for a debut novel. It took me a while to get into it, still when the MC said he was enjoying the game, I realized I did too. 4/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository 

Delirium by Lauren Oliver – Sort of an Equilibrium focused on love. I prefer the Bale version. It occurred to me I’d rather read YA novels written from a boy’s POV. They tend to be less whiny and insecure. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository 

Hover by Melissa West – Finishing this series since the last book is out. Compared to other YAs, the tone of this series read very light despite the whole drama surrounding the characters, so when there was a sex scene, although tastefully done and glossed over, it felt more appropriate for a different type of book. And I never understood why they had to share a room at all. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository 

Collide by Melissa West – The last book in The Taken trilogy is a lot of running, fighting, killing, and kissing. The end game seemed idealistic, but naïve, and the big baddie needed more development. For teens, this might work, but as an adult, I had to shake my head several times. 3/5 stars Amazon Bookdepository

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

A few thoughts on ebook piracy

Yesterday, it was a bittersweet day. I’ve been offline for a whole week due to health issues, and while trying to catch up with what I missed, I discovered two things: one, Amazon sent a check, which is good because meds are expensive around here, and two, I found my books on two ebook pirate websites. Bummer.

A couple of times a year, I check torrent sites and known ebook pirate sites to see if my books are there, and they’re not. It can only mean I’m not a big name yet so nobody bothers to pirate my work, and that’s fine. But when I find them on amateur-looking sites with bad design and copyright infringement report buttons right in the menu, it’s not fine. I don’t even know if the files are really there, it could only be a scam and I don’t have time to waste half a day cleaning viruses from my pc, but it still pisses me off. Because even if it’s all a lie, these people are using my name and my work to trick other people into falling for their game. And let’s face it, who does that for free? One way or the other, they’re making money out of it, and a little bit of it is made on my expense.

After the week I just had, I sure as hell don’t have the energy to chase after pirate sites and send copyright infringement notices to their host providers left and right. I will at some point, but not today. I’m not so sure those help anyway. Even if the files are removed, there’s no guarantee they won’t show up again next month, or if the site goes down, another one can appear over night. It’s kind of a lost battle if you see it this way, and people tend to say it’s free exposure and you’re not losing any sales. Well, I’m not so sure I agree with that either.

So, isn’t there anything we can do? Yes, there is, but this only works for me and other writers might not agree. Dear readers, if you can’t afford to buy my books, come to me. I’m still at the stage where I can use all the exposure I can get. I’ve already given away hundreds of free copies, a couple more won’t make me go broke. As I write this, you can enter the giveaway on LibraryThing to win a copy of Broken People, and you can download The Impaler’s Revenge for free from NoiseTrade. Yes, but they are free because I decided to do so and not because other people made that decision for me.

Let’s not make other people rich based on my work, okay? That’s money I’ll never see. Go directly to the source. You won’t have to worry about viruses and having your credit card information stolen, and I’ll have the satisfaction of making my readers happy. It’s not the best solution, someone still needs to pay those medical bills, but at least the bad guys will lose too. And that’s almost as good as a win. Come to me.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Cover Reveal: The Weight of a Wing by Ioana Visan

The Weight of a Wing
 (The Stolen Wings #1)
by Ioana Visan 

Alise has achieved the impossible. After her wings were chopped off, the fairy survived and now finds herself in the human world, once again hunted like prey by the sadistic Gorem.

Locating him with her help means that the two Guardians of Balance, Rafe and Vale, will not only be able to turn him in and make him pay for maiming her, but make him accountable for the deaths of other fairies as well.

Gorem has plans of his own for the rogue fairy. With the help of a wizard, Fabian, and an army of monsters by his side, Gorem will stop at nothing to recapture Alise.

With already so much on the line, Alise not only has to keep herself safe from harm, but will also have to protect her new human friend, Cassie, in the process.

Who will win the battle of good versus evil? Is capturing Gorem worth risking what remains of Alise's life?

Coming to your ereaders this spring! 

Sunday, March 1, 2015

The Impaler's Revenge is Free on NoiseTrade

Hi, all! Is it spring already where you are? I'm waiting for summer actually, but meanwhile I've got a pressie for you. :)

During the entire month of March, The Impaler's Revenge, the first novella in The Impaler Legacy series, will be available as a free download from NoiseTrade. Well, you can also leave a tip, but only if you want to. :)

So, what are you waiting for? Click on the link and download the ebook now. Enjoy the spring!