Words have the power to change lives, especially when they are used to create meaningful stories. In this collection of letters, bookish fangirl Laura A. Grace addresses topics related to every writer’s journey. From “character conversations,” to embracing one’s unique writing style, to celebrating a release day—there is a letter for every author no matter where they may be in sharing their story with others.
“Dear Author” includes six illustrations by Hannah S.J. Williams.
Growing up, Laura A. Grace dreamed of being a Sailor Scout and searching for the seven dragon balls so she could make a wish. Those dreams have continued to inspire her as co-founder and co-organizer of the devotional Finding God in Anime as well as a writer and YouTuber for Beneath the Tangles, a website that blends discussion of anime and Christianity. She also even started her own anime-inspired small business, Cheery Tangerine Creations! When she’s not busy brainstorming new pin designs or filming YouTube videos to convince others to read her favorite manga titles, you can find her playing video games with her husband and three children.
Come see what manga she is reading and recommending on her YouTube channel!
I LOVE THIS BOOK WITH MY WHOLE AUTHOR AND FANGIRL HEART.
The writing voice was SO sweet and fun to read. Everything was smooth, coherent, and PRECIOUS.
The last few letters really truly hit me hard, y'all. I've struggled recently in my writing: fighting doubts and fears, of being "good enough", of people "choosing" my novels, etc. Fears I know are "silly" but I still wrestle with them.
And these letters... ah! They were gentle, inspiring, and definitely the kind words I've been needing. Because we ALL have a story to tell... and hearing that from this dear author... that my stories matter, no matter what, really helped me.
I cannot possibly recommend this book to EVERYONE. If you're an author, get this book. If you need to buy an author a book but don't know what, get them this book. Just get this book for everyone who loves to write (or read)!
And don't forget to follow Laura A. Grace. She's publishing a manga next and I cannot wait!
This book was short, but no less effective for its length. Every letter was joyful and encouraging, and a pleasure to read. This is definitely an excellent read for any writer, but particularly those in a season of inspirational drought. Reading Dear Author rekindled my excitement to work on revising my NaNoWriMo novel! Definitely worth the read, and almost guaranteed to put a smile on your face.
I've never been one to fangirl, so maybe this book didn't speak to me as much as it would to others. But it was dear all the same, and I can see how this could be so encouraging to read during a hard season.
I think it’s quite possible that this book hit me at a weird time. I liked the sentiment behind the concept of this book—it consists of letters from a hypothetical fangirl who fell hard in love with the work of an unnamed author—presumably the author or aspiring author reading the book.
But somehow, I’ve got mixed feelings about this book. I might have rated it three-stars based on my personal enjoyment, but I really wanted to give it four, because, looking at it straight on, it deserves it. It’s so pure, and probably totally relatable to bookish fangirls everywhere.
Maybe it’s just me, but I wonder if, for authors who have been struggling with meh reactions and general obscurity for a long time might feel a little weird reading this book. There’s something of an uncanny valley here. The fangirl isn’t really talking to you—she’s not quite talking about your book…but she could be...almost. It’s kind of like a dream where you walk out to the barn and discover a beautiful unicorn waiting for you there—and then you wake up, and there never was a unicorn. It was a good dream, but it leaves a bitter aftertaste, because when you wake up, you remember you don’t even have a barn.
If you’re an author reading this review, and you think you might be about where I am in my journey, just keep your head up. Keep writing what you love and believe in. I don’t know if you’ll ever get your unicorn. Some people do. I hope you and I both do. But even if you don’t, remember what you do is important. And Laura A. Grace is an author too. You should read her books.
This is one of the sweetest little books I've read in a long time. It is exactly what the subtitle says: a collection of letters to unspecified authors by a woman who loves their books.
Because Grace never reveals what letter goes to what author, I felt like some of them were written to me. And that was incredibly encouraging. In fact, I saved this book to read when I dug back into rewrites on my current book after taking a hiatus in December. I'm so glad I did, because it really gave me a little dose of creative oomph every time I opened the cover and read a couple of letters.
If you're an author OR a bookish fangirl, I think you'll dig this book.
Laura A. Grace is one of the most caring, generous, and encouraging person I know. And a very passionate fangirl. She loves to cheer on other authors and fangirl over their books. She goes above and beyond. So it is no surprise when she announced the release of her book, Dear Author, Letters From a Bookish Fangirl. This book is exactly what the title says. A collection of letters Laura wrote to encourage authors. Each letter focuses on a theme such as "It's Done?", "Always Rereading", "Character Conversations", and "Recommending to Everyone", touching on various reactions readers have over books. Her love for books and their authors shine through each letter. The book is a quick read with cute illustrations that is sure to warm a writer's heart and encourage them to keep on keeping on. A perfect gift for a writer you know just in time for the holidays!
*I received an advanced reader copy in conjunction with a tour.
I wish I could rate this book more than five stars. It's so beautifully touching and I know I'll be picking it up again and again.
I loved the diversity of the letters! Some of them spoke to me, and really hit me where I am right now, but other letters will meet other authors at different stages of their journeys. And that's the beauty of this book. It's so encouraging, no matter what stage you're at.
This book made me cry and smile at the same time. I can't recommend it enough for all my writer/author friends. Please, please take my word and go buy this book! It's already been an incredible blessing to me, and I hope it will be the same for you.
I'm so looking forward to picking this book up again in a year's time and seeing which letters touch my soul next time! 💛
This is a lovely little book, and the illustrations are so adorable! Reading this made my book-loving heart so happy.
However, I do agree with what Sarah said in her review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show.... I read this book more from the perspective of a reader thinking over the books and authors that have impacted her rather than as an author wanting similar reactions from her someday-readers.
So this is a beautiful book, but I do think that there could be a little more substance to the encouragement for authors.
This collection of letters from a fangirl to authors is an encouraging read, and bound to lift your spirits. Its a wonderful reminder as to why we write, especially when we're feeling down and struggling to write that next book. And the added illustrations make it all the more delightful! I will hold onto my copy for a rainy day, and pull it out when I need that boost of encouragement!
I received an ARC copy from the author. This is my honest review.
This was such a sweet collection! I don't think anyone who's not an author can fully appreciate just how much a sweet review or an understanding comment or just a single heart-eyed emoji can mean when it's directed toward the story you've put so much effort into and the characters that you wonder if anyone else could really love. Obviously, these letters weren't written about my books specifically (my debut book didn't have a heroine...rats, I really loved that one!), but I still recommend this to any author who needs a reminder that your book is THIS to someone out there. <3<3<3
I am both the people in this book. I am the gushing, giddy fangirl who recommends my new fave to EVERY FLIPPING PERSON I CAN FIND and throws out scads of CAPS LOCK and emojis and exclamation points. And I am the author who lives for those messages, who's scared to believe that her words are worth a cent, who rereads every loving word from her readers with starstruck disbelief and treasures them in memory.
Sometimes, we writers need other writers to tell us we're not alone. But sometimes, we need a reader. Because after all, we're writing for the readers. And as hard as we tell ourselves, "Someone out there will love it like I do," we can never quite believe it until that someone tells us so. "Dear Author" is that encouragement.
Author, I defy you to read this book and not feel better by the end. These letters are from a reader's heart. She may not know your name, but she loves you. She believes in you. And her words are for you.
I love this little book of encouragement! When I read this for the first time nearly every letter made me cry because the encouragement and support within these pages means the world to me as an author and writer, and even though I didn’t cry (teared up isn’t the same thing, lol) when I reread it this time, I still had the biggest grin on my face because they are just that good.
So if you’re an author or writer who’s feeling down on your work or just need reminders of why we do this and to keep going on the hard days, I’d highly recommend picking up this book as it will touch your heart and make you smile when you need it most.
Every author should read this book. Being an author is hard. We all know it. There are times of discouragement. When the books are not selling, or impostor syndrome sets in, or we've just had a scathing review, or worse, we have no reviews. Discouragement may look different depending on what stage of our career we're currently at, but nobody is immune.
At times like these, we need Dear Author: Letters from a Bookish Fangirl. In this book, Laura A Grace doesn't give us technical advice or tell us what we're doing wrong, she showers us with encouragement. The book contains a collection of letters that Grace has written to authors.
While I have no doubt that some, if not all, of these letters were written with specific authors in mind, they have been written generically enough, addressed to "Dear Author" that we can all take encouragement from them. And there's something for everyone in here. From widely successful authors to writers who have not yet published.
Dear Author reminds us that there are fans of our work out there, even if we haven't found them yet. Our words matter. They will make a difference. And we may not even know the impact they have.
The big takeaway from this book for me was "Don't give up." What will you find in these letters? Take a read and find out.
I received a free advance copy of this book and have provided a honest review.
I think the idea for this book is really neat, encouraging writers to write is great. The reason that I gave it three stars instead of five is that I don't think that the author was encouraging the readers to write for the right reasons.
I understand that this was written as coming from a "bookish fangirl" but I think that if you are going to effectively encourage writers you have to give them something more than what they will get from this.
Simply telling the reader that "your characters are great" when the author of this book doesn't know whether the reader's characters are great or not can't be true encouragement.
There were highlights, the letters about making an impact on the way the reader thought about or looked at certain things were better than the rest. And the illustrations were a lot of fun.
Overall I think that the idea was really neat but that the overall message could have been a lot more helpful.
What a perfect little book. Encourager, helper, and friend, Laura is a BIG supporter of Indie and I feel she is an important part of the success of those who independentantly publish. If you don't know Laura, read her little book of letters to get a glimpse of the beautiful and supportive woman she is. I am an author and this book of heartfelt letters touched my heart. What a superb little gem. Her hard work shines in the gorgeous cover, pretty interior, and ADORABLE artwork. I love everything about this book. I feel encouraged to keep creating. A book that can do that is worth reading again and again. Thank you, Laura for your love and support of Indie. We love and appreciate you!
This book was an absolute joy to read. I found myself relating to each of these "fangirls," but, as an author, also hoping to receive any of these letters from a fan! Laura has written a beautiful piece that encourages authors and brings them together. I love her excitement for amazing stories and her ability to promote community over competition. I also would love to know which books made her write which letter! I'm excited for "Dear Author's" release and can't wait to purchase a copy!
This is a short but uplifting read! Perfect for cozying up on the couch and taking in all the author’s sweet words of encouragement in one sitting. There truly is a letter to authors in every stage of the writing journey—those in need of patience during the publishing process, or celebrating on release day, or looking to overcome criticism, or searching for their audience, and so on.
In true fangirl fashion, author Laura A. Grace also geeks out in several of her letters about things like rereading your favorite series, coping with the emotions you feel when reading a great story, reading an author’s conversations with their characters, and the dread of finishing your favorite series and wanting it to go on. All these things, I am sure, bring a smile to many an author’s face.
By far though, my favorite is Grace’s final letter, in which she pleads with authors to be their authentic selves. “You, dear author, never have to change your writing or your stories. You offer readers a special kind of magic only your fingers can create, and your books leave a special, one-of-a-kind touch only found in them,” she writes. This wonderful, Mister Rogers-esque quote brings joy to my heart as a lover of writing with dreams of one day publishing my own unique story.
My only critique of this book is that it is sometimes apparent that Grace is writing to an “author in particular” rather than “authors in general.” As the reader, you want to believe she is writing each letter to you personally, but there are times when a letter is just too specific to suspend reality. I went into it expecting that all the letters would be generalized enough to apply to every author. Instead, I believe authors who read this book will find one or two letters that they feel were written solely for them.
As a bonus, this book also includes several charming illustrations. It was a joy to see the author’s thoughts and feelings brought to life in these few delightfully quirky illustrations!
What a wonderful way to encourage authors from all different perspectives! Ms. Grace successfully shares her thoughts in these uplifting letters the emotions and struggles every reader has felt regarding their favorite writer. One of my favorite letters was You'll Publish Soon, I so relate to that one! The chapter, I'm Not Afraid to Bribe, made me smile. I totally understand the sentiments there without guilt or relenting! This book is short, but written wholeheartedly to encourage all types of writers and fully support them on their publishing journey. Words DO have power and Ms. Grace expresses so much love and understanding in these letters, it will motivate ANYONE who has ever needed another person to cheer them on.
I was given a review copy of this ebook. I was not required to write a positive review. The thoughts and comments are my own.
I was given an ARC of this book, and this is my honest review.
Bookish fangirls (and fanboys) everywhere, this book is for you! If you have every read and book and wanted to tell them how special they are, how much the book touched your very soul, and how much you enjoyed their story, this book is calling to you. From the very first letter to the last, Laura speaks not only to the authors she loves, but to the hearts of fangirls everywhere. The illustrations peppered between these letters of love, made my heart smile. Thank you Laura for sharing your amazing words and glimpses of your heart. Your letters spoke words I have thought of telling authors but never did. I totally recommend this book!