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Handbook for Mortals (Handbook for Mortals #1)
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Handbook for Mortals (Handbook for Mortals #1)

1.30  ·  Rating details ·  651 ratings  ·  307 reviews
Zade Holder has always been a free-spirited young woman, from a long dynasty of tarot-card readers, fortunetellers, and practitioners of magick. Growing up in a small town and never quite fitting in, Zade is determined to forge her own path. She leaves her home in Tennessee to break free from her overprotective mother Dela, the local resident spellcaster and fortuneteller. ...more
Hardcover, 448 pages
Published August 15th 2017 by Geeknation Press
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Salieri I read the preview to check if it was at least worth it and hell no. The writing is terrible and the MC is the ultimate Mary Sue/self insert, there's…moreI read the preview to check if it was at least worth it and hell no. The writing is terrible and the MC is the ultimate Mary Sue/self insert, there's no way I'm gonna like it and there are way too many good books out there for me to waste my time and money on shitty ones.

And if I saw her or people wanting to buy her book, I'd do nothing. It's their choice, if they wanna give her money, it's theirs to spend. Though I'd recommend reading the first few pages before actually buying it.(less)
Mmmhhmm At the end of the book, Mac, the love interest, goes, "So is there a book or something?"

Zade, the protag, goes, "A book?"

"Yeah, like a handbook for…more
At the end of the book, Mac, the love interest, goes, "So is there a book or something?"

Zade, the protag, goes, "A book?"

"Yeah, like a handbook for mortals [muggles], so I can understand your world better."

That's it.(less)

Community Reviews

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1.30  · 
Rating details
 ·  651 ratings  ·  307 reviews

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Sep 25, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Thoughts while reading here: #snarkformortals

Video review with lots of spoilers and feelings about why this is the worst.

I'm only giving this 1 star because I give everything at least one star. This was without a doubt one of the worst things I've ever read. To give you context, it's less harmful than Fifty Shades, but probably worse in terms of writing. I hated Bella more than Zade, but this has even less plot than Twilight, if you can imagine.

That said, apart from anything you've heard about
Feb 27, 2018 marked it as never-in-my-life
the drama surrounding this book is more interesting than the book itself

Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: definitely-not
I read the Amazon preview so you don't have to. In addition to being a scam (see every other legitimate review for details), this book is legitimately god-awful. You can't even escape the (long, rambling) foreword without encountering glaring punctuation errors.

As for the book itself, well, read the preview only if you want to feel talented by comparison. The book opens with not one but four epigraphs, followed by seven solid paragraphs of absolutely nothing. That's not an exaggeration. You hav
Elise (TheBookishActress)

oh my god. she bought her way to the top of the NYT list.
Beth Cato
Sep 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2017, fantasy, young-adult
I received this ebook through the publisher via Netgalley. As a published author myself, I am well aware of the way that author Lani Sarem and her team manipulated the New York Times list. I also know that the Goodreads ratings for the book consist of mostly one-star ratings due to the book's reputation and the sample available on Amazon.

I don't rate or review any book unless I finish it. I wanted to judge Handbook with as much fairness as I could, even knowing its history, so I endeavored to re
Estance Moriarty
Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: z-dislike
I never review books without reading them. Some extracts of this book have circulated & had this book found its way into my hands, it would have been a hard pass for me.

- White-slim-pretty-privileged-cis-heterosexual-woman describing herself as "different"? This is not different, this is the same, this is not special, this is what we are told over & over we should conform into. I didn't suffer years of abuse at school because of my difference only to end up receiving this message. This i
Bentley ★
Aug 24, 2017 marked it as lost-interest

How did this author seriously think no one would notice her quietly buy her way onto the NYT bestseller's list when no one has actually read the book - if it even exists and isn't a clever plot on her part to jumpstart a career in filmmaking in Hollywood. Shady practices as a creator earns a no way from me, which is unfortunate because the plot might have actually interested me, once upon a time.

Twitter thread here: for those out of the loop.
✨    jamieson   ✨
Aug 29, 2017 marked it as no-thanks
if I ever die in suspicious circumstances, please get YA book twitter to investigate because they cracked the case concerning this book (IT BOUGHT ITS WAY ONTO THE NYT BEST SELLER LIST LMFAAOO) in under an hour and thats the kind of investigation I deserve

everyone talking about the author & this book

S.K. Gregory
Aug 25, 2017 rated it did not like it
I have read a lot about this book in the last few days, but I'm going to ignore it and base my review on the book itself. I was given a free copy for an honest review. The idea of someone with magic, working on a magic show seemed like an interesting story.
There are many issues with this book. Over looking the issue of copyright infringement through the use of several song lyrics, the main character is quite unremarkable. In fact she seems quite conceited at times, but because she stammers when
I read it so you don't have to.

I read it to talk about on the Worst Bestseller podcast, coming soon.

It's awful.
Tanya Tate
Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Edit 4: The fact it is now 50 plus new 5 star fake reviews on this book which we as a community squash the drama of it like 6 months ago is mind blogging. Lani dear LET IT GO!! I hope these people are being paying good to do a fake 5 star reviews..

Edit 3: When the author of "My Immortal" comes out of hiding to clear up the rumors that wrote the book and denounce what Lani did , you know you fucked up!

Edit 2: So I read a couple pages to it thanks to Amazo
Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
I haven't read this book, but there's a story going around that you should probably read if you're thinking of buying (if you can even buy it):

Seems like a d!@# move to me, so here's one star.
Melanie Gillman
Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Zero stars for trying to cheat Angie Thomas out of her #1 spot on the NYT bestseller list.
Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Edit: I took the time to read some available excerpts of the book and JEEZ. Can I have that time back?
It reads like a first draft. As a YA budding author myself, I recognize the signs of the rough draft where every thought got barfed up onto the page in the heat of artistic pursuit. BUT this thing went straight to print without some very necessary editing. I'm going to try to be optimistic and say that there might be a reasonably okay book buried in there somewhere... but probably not.

OP: I just
robbie p.
Aug 24, 2017 marked it as the-tea
EDIT: Me and Julie did a book talk for this award winner!

MY FAVORITE BOOK! BEST OF 2017! No one paid me to say this but don't look at my bank account.
Feb 13, 2019 marked it as will-never-ever-read
I have never seen a lower rating. What's the deal with this book? Someone spill the tea
Sep 19, 2017 marked it as to-read
Yep, here I go again. I have to read this just because of the controversy. I'm going to read the book and make my own mind up.

I ended up giving The Black Witch five stars and it got trashed all over GRs and Twitter.

I am definitely intrigued now. I tend to love the ones people hate anyway.
J.A. Ironside
Aug 25, 2017 rated it did not like it
DNF at 10%


You know a book is bad when you can't even finish the free sample. Should I then be writing a review about it? Ordinarily I wouldn't but the author/ publisher of this book decided to pull this ;  so that makes it fair game as far as I'm concerned.


"Handbook for Mortals is in development as a motion picture set to debut in 2018."  For reference fellow bibliophiles, ANYONE can say their book is in development as a motion picture. Literally anyone
Aug 25, 2017 marked it as no
I love drama.

So the rating of this book dropped in literally two days because they obviously bought their way onto the NYT bestseller list.

Now a lot of crap ends up on the NYT imo but even though the author denies it, there was clearly some shenanigans going on.

But before getting to that, please take a look at this quote from the article:

In an interview with THR, Sarem, an occasional actress (uncredited roles in Jason Bourne and Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2)...

Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2. I'm disappoin
Susanna Needs a GREAT Book Please
I couldn't help myself, I read the free preview on Amazon.

I don't even know what I just read. How did this trash pile make it to publication? As somebody on twitter said, this sounds like a book you wrote when you were fifteen, hid it from the world, and wrote something better.

This should have stayed hidden from the world.

And how many times did the idiot who wrote the intro have to claim her status as international bestselling romance author? Never heard of her, can't wait to track down some of
Aug 24, 2017 marked it as not-for-me
It's actually ironic that I was talking to one of my best friends Katie the other day and was telling her it made NO SENSE that a book with 9 GR ratings was the #1 NYT bestseller for YA. So I'm a little proud of myself for being the first one to this party.

I won't say I'll never read this, because I don't know who I'll be in the future, but I can say that I don't really have a ton of respect for this "author" and wouldn't actively reach out for anything that has her name attached to it.

Here's t
Melanie (TBR and Beyond)
Aug 25, 2017 marked it as to-read
Wow - the shade of it all.

This author bought her way to the top, STOLE the artwork from a lesser known artist and then tried to backtrack and claim it was an "homeage" to them and bumped off one of the most important books this year (The Hate U Give) from its #1 spot on the New York Times Bestseller List. Now the author is trying to do damage control and say she sold all the books at conventions and she is being "cyberbullied." If this "author" sold 20,000 books at a convetion, I think someone
Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
no thanks. I won't support someone who cheats their way to the top.
Aug 24, 2017 marked it as hell-no
Autumn Bohn
Aug 24, 2017 added it
Shelves: no-thanks
Worst writing I've seen in a published book from what I've read(unfortunately I read more than I ever wanted to). And clearly most/all of the 5 star reviews are from fake accounts. Not to mention this trash....

*I have read this book, and choose not to rate it*
Aug 26, 2017 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 25, 2017 rated it did not like it
I refuse to read a book by a cheat. Publishing is brutal enough as it is; we don't need dishonest people making it even harder, throwing around money to get what they want. Leave that to politics.
Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Aug 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: anathema
So many problems with this book, even before you get to the plot. Never going to give my money or advertise through my review a book that made its way onto a bestseller list through a scam (see any of the other honest reviews for a link to the whole debacle).
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Lani Sarem basically grew up in the entertainment industry. She began acting at age three and continued to act and perform through her early years. Lani began writing scripts when she was eleven. Over the years she has become a jack-of-all-trades in the entertainment business. She became a rock n’ roll gypsy at fifteen and started touring with bands and working on festivals. She’s toured with ever ...more