Amazon, Book Clubs, Epic Fantasy, Indie-Authors, Kindle Books, Reviews

Book Review – Darkspire Reaches by CN Lesley

Ok, I admit it, I’m a fantasy fan through and through. What I’m an even bigger fan of is, fantasy books that are both gripping and easy to read. This means that, Darkspire Reaches has to go onto my list of really enjoyable fantasy books.

Raven is a wonderful heroine, a witch, who from the first page, brings the story to life and makes you want to know what happens to her. The author carries Raven’s story from start to end in a smooth, page-turning way. Poor Raven has it tough, her life seems to take her from the frying pan to the fire, over and over. Someone weaker might have been destroyed, but Raven uses it to mature her character. Diamonds are formed by heat and pressure, right? She isn’t the only main character though, and one of my favorites is Kryling, the endearing Firedrake who just simply has a great personality!

Oh how I enjoyed this well-written book! I can’t wait to read more books by CN Lesley.

I loved how the author took her time in explaining everything, while at the same time never once writing anything not necessary or boring.

The story line is unique – something quite hard to do when just about every story line possible to write has already been done in some way or another. Darkspire Reaches is filled with a rich tapestry of characters that just make this a really great fantasy read.

Amazon, Book Clubs, BooksGoSocial, Epic Fantasy, Goodreads, Indie-Authors, Reviews, World Building

Book Review – The Crimson Deathbringer by Sean Robins

Do you think the Akakies will visit us soon? I do love a good joke.

Well wow, you would not believe that this was Sean Robins first book! At the end when I read his short bio and discovered he’s a teacher, that made sense – because the book, especially for a first novel, is beautifully edited, easy to read and well-structured.

If you’re a SciFi fan then you’re going to love this big book. It’s meaty (long and detailed) bringing all the characters to life, making you like and care for them. They’re real people, in hopefully, not so real circumstances. Normally long books lose me, but not so this one. Each chapter kept bringing everything to life, definitely could see it as a mini TV series. Loved the alien humour – who’d of guessed that four legs and antenna could host a joke prankster? 
I really enjoyed that you saw the ‘bad guys’ (aliens) through their own eyes so you could see each aspect of the story as it came together. Well I could go on and on, because as you can see, I thoroughly enjoyed this story – highly recommend. ps also loved the GOT references, nice touch ūüôā

Amazon, Book Clubs, BooksGoSocial, Christian Fiction, Christian Fiction, Goodreads, Indie-Authors, Inspirational Story, Kindle Books, Manchester, Mombasa, Promotion Values, Reviews, World War 2

Sale alert – Grace in Mombasa

Hi everyone From today until 21st May ’19, Grace in Mombasa ebook is discounted from $4.99 to $0.99! Why not watch the 2 min video clip below to see if this is a book you might be interested in?

Amazon, Book Clubs, BooksGoSocial, Indie-Authors, Kindle Books, Promotion Values, Reviews, the value of promoting your book

Amazon kdp Select & advertising – is it worth it?

   Yes!

amazon kdp select

Well in my experience anyway, and I’ve been an indie author for three years now.¬† In fact yesterday I removed some of my books from various other sites – from which I had zero sales, and put my books back onto kindle select.

The reason? Well to make money of course.¬† The main reason for putting books onto other sites, for me, was so that I could get a BookBub deal – which are supposed to be amazing, however, after I think about 30 submissions to BookBub with a no-no response I began to wonder if it was worth it.¬† I decided ‘no it’s not’ yesterday, took my books off other sites and returned to good old Amazon kindle select kdp.

piggy bank

Here are some interesting things I’ve learnt recently.

  • The average indie author only ever sells around 50 books
  • People who know how to use Amazon kdp and advertising move out of being an average indie and earn approx $500 per month and sell a lot more than 50 books
  • Out of that $500 around $200 will be from kindle pages read

So the answer to… Is Amazon kdp select and advertising worth it… is a very loud yes!

hurray

To make sales and earn money… and get good reviews… you need firstly to enroll in kdp select and then you need to advertise.

However, before you follow the steps in my next blog for setting up your own advertisement campaign with Amazon I need to point out some things.

  1. The first thing people see is your book cover, if your cover is not eye-catching and appealing then forget about advertising, no amount of pushing your book before people will encourage them to buy if the cover is flat or boring.  There are great cover designers out there, if you want me to suggest a couple then please ask in the notes below.  In my experience you can get a really good professional cover done for approx $100.
  2. The Blurb… the blurb… we hates the blurb!¬† Well I do anyway, again if your blurb isn’t punchy and interesting, and pleasing to the eye (in other words do you know your amazon formatting?) forget it, you can spend $100’s on advertising and no one is going to bite.¬† I know a really good company that do blurbs but unfortunately they charge $300.¬† Again, if you would like to know who they are, please ask in the notes below. (ps I’ll tell you a little secret…¬† I paid $300 for the blurb on my first book, it really is a million times better than anything I could do… however, not being able to pay $300 for all the other books I copied and pasted the formatting they gave me – double dutch jargon that makes your blurb stand out as professional on the Amazon pages, and just changed the words to the other books.¬† The blurb itself might not be amazing but at least it is presented well ha ha) I suggest you look for help from friends – especially book readers, and also ask several different book clubs, I belong to three book clubs that I really rate on FB, you pop a post on and get invaluable information and help.¬† This is a good place to put your blurb and listen to the comments that come back.
  3. Last, but by no means least, the book itself MUST be a) a gripping story and b) edited to perfection.¬† I got this wrong with my first book and I so regret publishing before I was ready.¬† Some readers are vicious, I mean down right uncaring of the years of hard work you’ve put into a book, if the editing is bad they will give you 1* and tell the world your book is not worth reading.¬† Once that review is on there you can’t get it removed, it is there for eternity and once people see that review you have an enormous amount of work to do to try and correct it.¬† Please, please, do not list your book until you have had it proof read by a professional.

So, have you got all the above 3 points done?¬† Then you’re ready to start advertising.¬† My next blog will be a step-by-step guide to setting up an advert that should make you money.

money

 

Book Clubs, BooksGoSocial, Born to Be, Christian Fiction, Goodreads, Indie-Authors, Inspirational Story, Kindle Books, Manchester, Mombasa, Reviews, World War 2

Grace in Mombasa – two endorsements

I’m so excited to say that I will probably have the kindle of Grace in Mombasa up by Friday 23rd November – a whole week early!

Grace in Mombasa 1 (1)

I’d like to share with you the two endorsements that I have had for the book.

Tracy Traynor’s writing transports you from World War 1 and 2 England to the courts of heaven, via Mombasa. With characters which pop off the page and straight into your heart, this is a book you will remember for a long time.  Wendy H Jones, author and member/webmaster of Association of Christian Writers.

The story of Grace captures the experience of many others who, though quite ordinary by themselves, find that the love of God propels them towards quite extraordinary endeavours.¬† Tracy is the author of Grace’s story but the inspiration was Moira Smith and the author of her story was none other than God himself, described in the Bible as the ‘author and finisher of our faith’.¬† I commend Tracy’s book¬†Grace in Mombasa¬†to you in the hope that, inspired by the story of Grace and Moira, you will become hungry for a story of your own and that you will turn to the great author of all our lives.¬† He already has a story prepared for you”¬†¬†Sean McIntyre,¬†missionary with Barnabas and now minister to the Assembly of God Church in Colchester.

author of our faith 2

Amazon, Book Clubs, Christian Fiction, Dyslexic, Goodreads, Indie-Authors, Inspirational Story, Manchester, Mombasa, Reviews, World War 2

Only 3 weeks to go…

I'm not rubbish

When you’ve spent most of your life… and you’re 57 so that’s a pretty long time… thinking that you’re stupid and rubbish and an idiot, it can be hard to change.¬† I do believe I’ve come a long way to getting over low self-esteem but then in times like this, that old nagging voice “you’re an idiot” returns to throw me into chaos.

What is causing this sudden panic attack that I might not have changed after all?¬† The release of my new book. Aha, you may say, really? that all?¬† Unfortunately, yes.¬† I have poured myself into my latest book ‘Grace in Mombasa’ and the fear of rejection is making me ill.¬† I have to wonder why I put myself through it.¬† Writing the story itself was quite fun and even relaxing, but then editing started and demanded sweat and tears from me in an effort to get it to a level that people could enjoy it.¬† Then all the expense comes, professional editing for someone with dyslexia like me is crucial and must be paid for.¬† Then there is advertising and promoting to be done.¬† I’m sure my friends must be sick of hearing about my books.

And now when I am waiting for the first reviews to come in, there is nothing left but feeling sick.  Maybe I should give writing up and leave it to the more hardy people out there.

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I’ve got my fingers and toes crossed that people will enjoy Grace’s story, and until release date of the 1st Dec ’18 I am just trying to keep myself as busy as a bee and trying my hardest to switch off the anxious button!

Good news, getting an article in the local newspaper about the story – also keeping my fingers crossed to have a feature on Christian Premier Radio.

From war torn Newton Le Willows - to historical Mombasa

 

 

Amazon, Book Clubs, BooksGoSocial, Christian Fiction, Goodreads, Indie-Authors, Inspirational Story, Kindle Books, Manchester, Mombasa, Reviews, World War 2

Grace in Mombasa – release date 01/12/18

 

Release Date Sat 1st December 2018

I am happy to say, that Grace in Mombasa is now with a professional editor being polished.

The release date on Amazon will be Sat 1st December 2018.

I’m so excited and can’t wait for people to read it and find out what they think.

53 days to go….

Amazon, Book Clubs, BooksGoSocial, Christian Fiction, Goodreads, Indie-Authors, Kindle Books, Reviews

Review ‚Äď Antiques and Alibis, by Wendy H. Jones

I have to begin by saying I think the book cover is great!  If you want a picture to draw you into a story, this one certainly does.  Its atmospheric black and white picture of a moonlit street simply shouts mystery and intrigue, a very good start for a detective novel!

As the blurb tells you, Cass Claymore is a red-headed, motorbike riding, ex-ballerina who inherits her uncle’s detective agency.  That alone was enough to tickle my interest buds and make me buy the book.

And I wasn’t disappointed.  From the get-go this tongue-in-cheek detective novel had me turning pages.

I really enjoyed the ‚Äėlightness‚Äô not taking itself too seriously, tone of the author.¬† The editing style also helped keep things crisp and easy to read and I found this very easy on the eye and relaxing to read.

The story is well paced and has good structure.  I instantly liked Cass Claymore and enjoyed the world-building that was created around her.  But I simply fell in love with the dwarf Quill (as apparently all the women around him do).  He’s a marvellous character, laid back, smooth talking and totally knows how to wind up Cass, just loved the conversations between the two, and have to say I do hope the author is planning a book two because I want to see more of them.

The only, very slight, downside for me was the ending.  It felt rushed, unlike the rest of the book which moves along at a lovely steady pace.  One minute something is left on Cass’s doorstep and the next minute (it felt) it was all round-up and over.  Who did leave the clue on the doorstep and why did they?  That’s too much of an unknown to leave me completely satisfied with the ending of the book.

That said, I totally enjoyed this book and found myself smiling in every chapter, and I would most definitely recommend you read it for yourself if you like murder-mysteries.

To conclude: A great, tongue-in-cheek, light-hearted mystery.  Highly recommend.

 

 

 

 

Amazon, Book Clubs, Born to Be, Christian Fiction, Epic Fantasy, Fairies, Goodreads, Indie-Authors, Kindle Books, Oracle's Quest, Reviews, World Building

Reviews by kids, for kids.

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Love my latest review, which is by Autumn aged 14.  Nearly all my reviews are by adults and I was really happy to receive this one through the website Reviews by kids, for kids.

Idi & The Oracle’s Quest by T N Traynor
ISBN 9781496043931
Reviewed by Autumn (age 14) for Reader Views Kids (7/18)

If you like mysterious rendezvous, witches, castles, demons, dragons and a quest to save the world¬†then ‚ÄúIdi & The Oracle‚Äôs Quest,‚ÄĚ book one in the Born to Be series, by T N Traynor, is a story you¬†definitely should read.
A spell of forbidden love is cast, only to leave a princess grieving over her love after he is killed, and she is banished from her kingdom for the child she is carrying. Little does she know that the elements or earth witches have taken a solemn vow to protect her and her unborn child from an evil wizard by the name of Norvora. If he gets control of the child, he will unleash unimaginable horrors from the depths of Astaroth.
A plan is made by the fairies to intercept Princess Cassandra and her unborn child before Norvora can reach them. Their journey takes them through a forbidden forest to reach the mountains to a town called Tamarind.
A great and kind wizard named Marcus is called upon by the oracle Oleanna to find a boy named Idi who will become the greatest wizard of all time. Idi is an orphaned boy who has been pick on his entire life and felt like he would never amount to anything, until Marcus finds him and asks that he accompanies him on an important quest to save the kingdoms. Together they will set out on a journey to find the child who is meant to be king.

I really enjoyed reading ‚ÄúIdi & The Oracle‚Äôs Quest.‚ÄĚ The story line was fast paced with hint of¬†suspense. I liked how the author combined characters such as wizards, elemental witches, dwarfs¬†and a dragon in a not-so-fairy-tale-like setting. The chase through the forest kept you on the edge of¬†your seat, not knowing if Cassandra and the fairies would make it to safety before the evil wizard¬†Norvora and his henchmen caught up with them. Every chapter had a twist in the story that was¬†exciting and unexpected. My favorite character would be Idi. He felt like no one cared for him, but¬†he would not give up on others and was always there for them.
‚ÄúIdi & The Oracle‚Äôs Quest‚ÄĚ, book one of the Born to Be series, by T N Traynor is a magical story¬†that will leave you wanting more. I would recommend this story for 9th graders and up, and I look¬†forward to the next book in the ‚ÄúBorn to Be series.‚ÄĚ

Link below to view the review on their website.

http://readerviewskids.com/reviewtraynoridiandtheoraclesquest

 

Amazon, Book Clubs, BooksGoSocial, Born to Be, Christian Fiction, Epic Fantasy, Fairies, Fantasy, Goodreads, Indie-Authors, Reviews

The Innkeeper’s Son ~ K C Herbel

As a Christian, I love it when I find a book full of morals.¬† One of my all-time favorites is the Narnia series by C S Lewis.¬†¬†Clive Staples Lewis¬†(1898‚Äď1963) was one of the intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably one of the most influential writers of his day.

Image result for c s lewisImage result for the lion the witch and the wardrobe

I love that Clive went through changes in his life, which include losing his Christian faith and then finding it again later in life. A true prodigal son story.¬† He wrote quite a few books but I think the world’s favorite must be The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe.

I adore when a story has hidden beliefs and principles for life behind the writing.¬† My own series Born to Be, is exactly that.¬† I was once told that my story was too innocent to get anywhere, says a lot about the world we live in doesn’t it?

I was, therefore, over the moon to read The Innkeeper’s Son by K C Herbal, and discover a beautifully written, traditional fantasy packed with caring and sensitive characters.¬† Woven together in a magical story of dragons and fairies and magic.¬† I loved it and highly recommend it.¬† Very pleased to find there is already four in the series and I look forward to reading the rest.