Sci-Fi, fantasy and speculative Indie Authors Review discussion

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The Betterreads Project > Stage 1:List Of Books For Appraisal

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message 1: by Richard (last edited Oct 28, 2014 02:36PM) (new)

Richard | 490 comments Mod
Please post your book here as follows:

- Your book's title (essential that this includes a link to an excerpt of decent length, which could be Amazon's 'Look Inside' feature for instance, accessed via your book's page on Goodreads, or an excerpt posted on your own website, or anything similar).
- Your book's genre
- A thumbnail image of the front cover

- nothing else please (just trying to keep it simple!)


message 2: by D.R. (new)

D.R. Merrill (dezmerrill) | 18 comments Lamikorda by D.R. Merrill Lamikorda by D.R. Merrill
Science fiction - alien encounters (where humans are the aliens) combines elements of "hard" and "soft" sf, including a constructed language


message 3: by Richard (new)

Richard Penn (richardpenn) | 758 comments Title: The Dark Colony

Genre: Hard Scifi

Link: The Dark Colony or http://www.amazon.com/Dark-Colony-Ast...

Cover: The Dark Colony (Asteroid Police, #1) by Richard Penn

Blurb: The adventures of a young policewoman begin at a space station at the asteroid Terpsichore in the year 2060, and follow her and her team as they track down a secret colony where women and children are kept as slaves. This is "hard" science fiction, with no magic forces or time-warps, where space travel is hard and takes many months. Colonists invent and build their own equipment from local materials. While truly isolated, they are part of a movement aiming to create thousands of independent communities throughout the Belt.


message 4: by Kara (new)

Kara Jorgensen (karajorgensen) | 97 comments The Earl of Brass
Excerpt
Genre: Steampunk/historical fantasy
The Earl of Brass (The Ingenious Mechanical Devices #1) by Kara Jorgensen


message 5: by J.A. (new)

J.A. Ironside (julesanneironside) | 653 comments Mod
This is looking good so far - Richard 2060 has hit a pace even I can hardly hope to compete with. A few thoughts and then I'll stop interrupting.

1) if you are voting thumbs up please say so with at least a tiny bit of feedback - don't just chip in and recommend a book. Actually if you happen to have already read and reviewed a book perhaps you would go better to concentrate on those you haven't read?

2) we are trusting that feedback and a thumbs up/ down vote is given in good faith. So please do not contact the person who have the feedback to quibble with them if you don't agree. No one is going to write a book that is for everyone and holding out for universal appeal is insane. So accept it with good grace and move on. The next person may give you totally different feedback. It is subjective afterall. If you feel that there has been anything offensive said and that your MODs haven't picked up on it, your first port of call is to PM me or Richard (the two headed one not Richard 2060) and raise it with us. We will take it from there and appraise you of any action should it be needed. The reason for this is that we are never at our most objective when it comes to our own work. So use your MODs and let them act as intermediaries - there'll be less stress all round. Rest assured that anything that smacks of bullying or offensiveness with the intention of causing offense will be stamped out sharpish!

Thought I'd better say that before we got too far along! Otherwise I'm delighted that people are jumping on board with this. Remember - the more you read and review, the quicker your own work will be seen to.

As you were ;)


message 6: by Jamie (new)

Jamie Maltman (jamiemaltman) | 156 comments Mod
Brush With Darkness (Arts Reborn: Book I)
Historically-Inspired Fantasy in a Rome-like setting
Brush With Darkness (Arts Reborn, #1) by Jamie Maltman
Amazon for Sample
Web Sample


message 8: by L.E. (new)

L.E. Howel | 6 comments Cover thumbnail didn't work- hmmm... there's a link to it anyway. Hope that works for you.


message 9: by Jamie (new)

Jamie Maltman (jamiemaltman) | 156 comments Mod
L.E. wrote: "Cover thumbnail didn't work- hmmm... there's a link to it anyway. Hope that works for you."

Click on the little "Add Book" above the comment box.


message 10: by J.A. (new)

J.A. Ironside (julesanneironside) | 653 comments Mod
Just to repeat myself here:

Ok, I have opened a thread for each of the books put forward for appraisal under that books title. I have also copied across all votes and feedback so far. Authors please check that the links are working, if not you may want to add some more.

I will leave the original feedback posts standing on the appraisal thread for 24hrs and then I'll prune them out so we're left with just a list.

Please only list the book you're putting forward on the appraisal thread - this one here. One of us MODs will open a thread for voting or feedback (trying to avid duplicate threads!)

Please only give feedback and vote on the appropriate book thread NOT the appraisal thread. (This one)

This is all so that it makes it nice and easy for us MODs to track what stage books are at and which ones are ready to go forward for review.

Really impressed with everyone's generosity with feedback etc so far. Keep it up :)


message 11: by K. (new)

Caffee K. (kcaffee) | 461 comments This has been great for me. One of the blogs I follow has a weekly series they do where they look at the first 300-ish words of your book with feed back. (I've gone through that one, which is why I am holing off on submitting my own... Working through a few niggling details pointed out in that process.)

What you are doing here is a great step in the same direction, because we get to see more. Wonderful learning tool. Thanks for taking the time to offer this, and for keeping up with it.


message 12: by Montgomery (new)

Montgomery Mahaffey | 5 comments Hi! I think I'm doing this right...is the appraisal list still open? Here's my book:

Ella Bandita and the Wanderer by Montgomery Mahaffey Ella Bandita and the Wanderer by Montgomery Mahaffey
Genre: Fantasy/Romance


message 13: by J.A. (new)

J.A. Ironside (julesanneironside) | 653 comments Mod
Yep. This list will be ongoing :)


message 14: by Vickie (new)

Vickie Nguyen | 26 comments Hi! If I've already reviewed a book on this list, is it allowed to "cheerlead" for it? Especially if it seems kinda caught in limbo (in the case of my fave, four thumbs-up and one thumbs-down)?


message 15: by J.A. (new)

J.A. Ironside (julesanneironside) | 653 comments Mod
I'll discuss it with Richard later and get back to you, Vickie.


message 16: by Richard (new)

Richard Penn (richardpenn) | 758 comments If the mods could post scores, would that encourage us to appraise the books that need it?


message 17: by Anthony Deeney (last edited Oct 30, 2014 07:08AM) (new)

Anthony Deeney | 81 comments Okay, I hope this is correct.

Robots Like Blue

Ebook & paperback currently on Amazon only (sorry!).






Amazon link:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Robots-Like-B...


message 18: by G.G. (new)

G.G. (ggatcheson) | 200 comments Are sequels permitted? If so...

The Legacy: Destiny The Legacy Destiny (The Legacy, # 2) by G.G. Atcheson

Mix of dark fantasy and sci-fi (sequel to The Legacy: Fate)

Sample can be read here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KLNAP2Y or https://www.smashwords.com/books/view...


message 19: by Richard (new)

Richard | 490 comments Mod
Vickie: nothing wrong with cheerleading, but there are already other places (e.g. the 'Book Recommendations' folder) for that. The point of the exercise here is the longer-term one of authors working together to raise the standard and reputation of indie books in general - it's more about evaluating other people's work than promoting your own. If it works, though, we'll all benefit (and sell more books!)


message 20: by Richard (new)

Richard | 490 comments Mod
Richard 2060: do you mean the actual latest scores (3-2, 0-4, etc.) or just the number of appraisals which have been done so far? I'm a bit dubious about the first; they did that on The Source and I always wondered how much it influenced people's assessments of books (if it's currently at 0-4 for example, isn't that likely to affect your judgement of it?)


message 21: by Richard (new)

Richard | 490 comments Mod
G.G.: only one book per author on the conveyor belt at a time, but other than that you can post sequels, prequels, anything else you like (and in any order!)


message 22: by Richard (new)

Richard | 490 comments Mod
No cancelling out, a book goes to the 'For Review' thread as soon as it reaches five thumbs up - which Richard2060's certainly has (thanks for the heads-up!)


message 23: by J.A. (new)

J.A. Ironside (julesanneironside) | 653 comments Mod
Once a book has reached stage two, perhaps the people who review it could post a short note on the books thread to say they have reviewed it? It will make it easier for us to track when a book hits 5 reviews so we can take the thread down.


message 24: by Richard (new)

Richard | 490 comments Mod
There's a problem with the link Turhan - or did you really write that?


message 25: by Christina (new)

Christina McMullen (cmcmullen) | 1213 comments Mod
Richard wrote: "There's a problem with the link Turhan - or did you really write that?"

LMAO! We have a secret celebrity! Or a glitch in the Matrix.


message 26: by Anthony Deeney (new)

Anthony Deeney | 81 comments It's a glitch. A few links are jumping to that book at times.


message 27: by Sue (last edited Nov 02, 2014 04:05PM) (new)

Sue Perry | 175 comments Nica of Los Angeles
Nica of Los Angeles (Frames, #1) by Sue Perry

Author: Sue Perry

Genre: Fantasy noir detective

Amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/Nica-Los-Angele...

Blurb: You've never read anything like this! When rookie private eye Nica takes on a mysterious case, she enters a world of multiple dimensions called Frames, where buildings and lawn chairs can be sentient, where a stray cat has great powers, where books can be killers, and clouds can be spies. At home, Nica tackles missing persons cases, while in the larger reality of the Frames she is swept into an escalating battle between good and evil.


message 28: by Carl (last edited Nov 02, 2014 11:08PM) (new)

Carl Purcell Pilgrimage
Pilgrimage by Carl Purcell
Genre: Contemporary Fantasy, Action/Adventure
Amazon Page: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ONT6O54
Longer Sample: http://figment.com/books/853334-Pilgr...


message 29: by S. Usher (new)

S. Usher Evans (susherevans) | 35 comments Double Life (Razia Book 1) by S. Usher Evans

Genre: Science Fiction

Amazon Page with the Look Inside: http://www.amazon.com/Double-Life-Raz...


message 30: by Aurora (new)

Aurora Springer (auroraspringer) | 34 comments A Tale of Two Colonies, Science Fiction.
[The Goodreads cover is not the new version]
Link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00MFY8A5Q


message 31: by Nathan (last edited Nov 07, 2014 09:26AM) (new)

Nathan Calvanese (ncalvanese) | 4 comments The Darkener

Thumbnail provided by MakeAThumbnail.com

Genre: Contemporary Fantasy

Links: The Darkener Amazon

Excerpt Link: Book Description and Sample Chapters

Video Trailer: Youtube Trailer


message 32: by K.P. (last edited Nov 07, 2014 09:47AM) (new)

K.P. Merriweather (kp_merriweather) | 189 comments The Most Unlikely Beginnings by K.P. Merriweather The Most Unlikely Beginnings

Genre: Science Fiction/Action Adventure

Blurb: James Russell is just an ordinary desk jockey grinding away at a dead-end job with dreams of becoming a highly paid computer programmer. When he decides to duck out the office for an early lunch break, everything changes through an event of sheer chance -- he obtains a mysterious power called The Signet! Now gifted with the most powerful weapon in the universe, James learns that the fate of his planet rests on his shoulders. Struggling between coming to grips with his newfound skills, battling alien assassins, dealing with foxy women and not losing his job, James realizes the hard way that the only way to get his life back normal is to fight for it... that is if he lives long enough!

Excerpt link: The Most Unlikely Beginnings Chapter 1 Preview

Amazon link: The Most Unlikely Beginnings - Kindle Version

Smashwords link: The Most Unlikely Beginnings - Smashwords Version


message 33: by D.L. (last edited Dec 13, 2014 01:58AM) (new)

D.L. Morrese (dl_morrese) | 49 comments Brane Child by D.L. Morrese
Genre: Science Fiction
YouTube Promo Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VYNCk...

CAUTION: OPENING THIS BOOK MAY CREATE AN ALTERNATE REALITY

Brane Child will be released on 21 December, and I'm looking for feedback. A preview can be found on BookWorks: http://www.bookworks.com/book/1088/br... or on Amazon http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PIPTRIS

This is a story of humanity venturing into the unknown, as it has always done. One step leads to another, but not all are as sturdy as one might hope. Sometimes you just have to put your foot forward and hope for the best.

The Brane Skip Device, which may allow a spaceship to skip between layers of reality, bypass normal space, and avoid the universal speed limit—the speed of light—is unproven. The theory behind it is poorly understood. Lisa Chang, mission commander for its first crewed test, doesn’t trust it. It seems like magic to her, and she doesn’t believe in magic—not even after the ship skips to a fantasy version of Earth, complete with dragons, orcs, and wizards. This, ultimately, is her greatest advantage.

Questions and Answers about this book:

How does this book relate to your previous books?
In the immortal words of Monty Python, it’s ‘something completely different’. Well, Okay, maybe not completely different. I am still the author and it falls firmly in the same ‘counter-fantasy’ subgenre of science fiction that my other books do, but the setting and characters are new and (I think) original. It is positive science fiction—upbeat, hopeful, and sometimes even a bit funny. There is also a smidgeon of cultural satire. My goal for this book was to combine science, history, philosophy, fantasy, games, and humor into a satisfying story about stories.

A story about stories?
Yes, in part. It is about how readers shape stories as much as writers do. The writer sketches the characters and settings, but the reader completes them. No two readers experience exactly the same story. Brane Child is about how beliefs and expectations shape perspective. It touches on human achievement, quantum physics (specifically M-theory), and the idea that reality is much more complex than it seems. The physics (and metaphysics) are warped a bit (Okay, more than a bit) to fit this particular story, but I believe there is a thought or two in here that some people will find intriguing. I also think it’s a fun story.


message 34: by K. (last edited Feb 06, 2015 12:56PM) (new)

Caffee K. (kcaffee) | 461 comments (Still fighting the cover, but best I have)

Out of the Darkness

Genre: Dark Fantasy
Blurb: Nameless, a slave-born pukah has fate stacked against him. He was born to fight, trained to win, conditioned to survive in the Arena. He wins his way to freedom, then fate begins to wreak havoc in his life. Struggling to learn how to survive as a free man, he finds himself taking on a personal war against the culture that created him. In this dark fantastical world of bloody gladiatorial combat, personal gain at all costs, and rulership by the most cunning,Nameless is set adrift by the whims of something that keeps turning his life upside down.

Sample reading: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view...

(edited to remove the free disclaimer. If you want a copy, please message me to make arrangements.)


message 35: by Michael (new)

Michael Peck (michaelalanpeck) | 25 comments Title: The Commons: Book 1: The Journeyman

Genre: Contemporary Fantasy

Sample link: Link to Goodreads reader

The Commons Book 1 The Journeyman by Michael Alan Peck


message 36: by Richard (new)

Richard Penn (richardpenn) | 758 comments Sequel if I may be so bold...

Title: Freedom at Feronia

Genre: Hard (near-future) Science Fiction

Sample link: http://www.amazon.com/Freedom-Feronia...

Freedom at Feronia by Richard Penn


message 37: by Christina (new)

Christina McMullen (cmcmullen) | 1213 comments Mod
Okay, this is awkward since technically I'm a mod, but since everyone else had to put their books on this list, here is mine.
Title: Past Life Strife
Genre: light urban fantasy
Exerpt: http://www.amazon.com/Past-Life-Strif...
Past Life Strife (Rise of the Discordant Book#1) by Christina McMullen


message 38: by Richard (new)

Richard Penn (richardpenn) | 758 comments Thumbs up for Past Life Strife. I think we've discussed both cover and blurb in other boards, anyhow they work well, are clear and intriguing. Text has not noticeable errors and pulled me in to the story.


message 39: by Richard (new)

Richard Penn (richardpenn) | 758 comments Oh, look. I typed a noticeable error in the phrase "no noticeable errors." I think my keyboard's wearing out.


message 40: by D.L. (new)

D.L. Morrese (dl_morrese) | 49 comments Brane Child by D.L. Morrese I just noticed that I got my first reader review on Amazon for my last book. It was a 5-star one. Those are always nice to see. I don't know the guy who posted it, but he says he preordered it because he liked my other books. That's
also nice to hear.


message 41: by K. (new)

Caffee K. (kcaffee) | 461 comments Christina wrote: "Okay, this is awkward since technically I'm a mod, but since everyone else had to put their books on this list, here is mine.
Title: Past Life Strife
Genre: light urban fantasy
Exe..."


Cover: Nice, eye catching, and after reading the sample, I can see the humor and tie in.

Blurb: Nothing new to add. As mentioned before, it's been hashed out on another thread.

Sample: Where's the rest? This has me so hooked, I'm going to be a bear until I can buy the book. Well done.

Overall? Thumbs up all the way!


message 42: by Christina (new)

Christina McMullen (cmcmullen) | 1213 comments Mod
Hey, you guys can't appraise my book here! I put it on the list to have one of the other mods put it up because I thought it would look weird if I posted my own listing after telling you all to post here first.


message 43: by K. (new)

Caffee K. (kcaffee) | 461 comments Richard wrote: "Sequel if I may be so bold...

Title: Freedom at Feronia

Genre: Hard (near-future) Science Fiction

Sample link: http://www.amazon.com/Freedom-Feronia......"


Cover: Intriguing. Definitely makes me want to know what all the bits and pieces are.

Blurb: I like the part that deals with the story. The second half still feels a bit like an apology about this being near future with reasonable extrapolations of current technology.

Sample: Not sure if this is the American in me, or if it is deliberate. The spelling on "metres" instead of "meters" seems to be wrong, and you've used it several times in just the few pages I've read through. Not enough to throw me out of the story, but it's ... odd... to my eyes.

Other than the slight spelling discrepancy, the sample is great. I enjoyed it, and will gladly continue once I can get a full copy.

Verdict? Thumbs up.


message 44: by K. (new)

Caffee K. (kcaffee) | 461 comments Christina wrote: "Hey, you guys can't appraise my book here! I put it on the list to have one of the other mods put it up because I thought it would look weird if I posted my own listing after telling you all to pos..."

Woops. I've been playing catch up on the appraisals. Can one of the mods move them to the proper threads? And, I'll be sure to double check where I'm posting in the future.


message 45: by Christina (new)

Christina McMullen (cmcmullen) | 1213 comments Mod
No problemo :)
I have some catching up to do myself.


message 46: by K. (new)

Caffee K. (kcaffee) | 461 comments Thanks Christina.


message 47: by Sean (last edited Feb 08, 2015 01:54PM) (new)

Sean Golden (seandgolden) | 13 comments Warrior: The War Chronicles Book I

Genre: Epic fantasy, potential YA crossover

Link: Warrior

The Amazon link includes a blurb and the "look inside".


message 48: by Kara (last edited Mar 15, 2015 01:26PM) (new)

Kara Jorgensen (karajorgensen) | 97 comments Title: The Winter Garden

Genre: Historical fantasy/steampunk

Link: here (Look inside feature will give you the sample)
The Winter Garden (The Ingenious Mechanical Devices #2) by Kara Jorgensen

Hopefully this is big enough for a thumbnail.

Thanks, everyone =)


message 49: by Christina (new)

Christina McMullen (cmcmullen) | 1213 comments Mod
Hi Kara. I'll need to get to a computer before I can set this up. GR has some odd rules about what we can and can't do with mobile devices. If no one gets to it sooner, I'll have you set up this evening.


message 50: by Kara (new)

Kara Jorgensen (karajorgensen) | 97 comments Christina wrote: "Hi Kara. I'll need to get to a computer before I can set this up. GR has some odd rules about what we can and can't do with mobile devices. If no one gets to it sooner, I'll have you set up this ev..."

It's all good, Christina. No rush.


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