Sample Saturday: An Extraordinary Union (The Loyal League, #1)

Interracial Romance Extraordinary Union
An Extraordinary Union by Alyssa Cole

 An Extraordinary Union (The Loyal League, #1)

Author: Alyssa Cole

Published by Kensington March 28, 2017

Get it on the Kindle now and see why this book grabbed five star ratings!

Why did I sample this book?

  1. A fellow blogger on WordPress mentioned the title and just from her praises of the gorgeous cover, I had to read onward.
  2. Did I mention this book has raving reviews?
  3. Did I mention it takes place during the civil war, has a gorgeous black female protagonist paired up with a white detective(possible love interest?)
  4. I have always loved Regency romance and other historical books. I can get swept up in them easily.

Hopefully I have convinced you that a free sample of this book is too yummy to turn down. I think I will order the print version. Seems worth it, don’t you think?  🙂

Thick Skin Over My Haiku, Dealing With Poetry Submissions

Hello Bloggers, readers, and writers!

A few days ago, I was hoping Frogpond would get back with me to let me know my “Stellar” haiku has made it into the online journal.

I open my email from them.

This is what I see…(Hopefully you can see it, if not, my reaction will inform you)

screenshot frogpond

My reaction:

upset cat

Needless to say I was not particularly pleased that the poetry I’ve shared with others and received great response, received a “we’ll pass” from Frogpond.

Note: With Frogpond you can submit poetry you’ve shared on social media just not on any blogs.

Also any journals and contests I mention in these posts, I’ve hyperlinked them so you can check them out too!

I will be posting regularly about poetry and other writings I am submitting this year. This is the year I buckle down and start submitting to contests, literary journals, the web, etc.

So are the people online wrong? Are they a bad judge of haiku?

Is Frogpond looking for some other kind of haiku? Does it have to be 5-7-5 strictly?

I don’t know.

What I do know is I am going over my haiku now while writing more poetry in other formats. I love haiku so I am hoping to perfect it.

How have you dealt with rejection? Comment below!

Happy writing everyone and I hope to bring back better news in the meantime 🙂

 

Sample Saturday: Lion’s Blood

lions blood
Lion’s Blood by Steven Barnes

Lion’s Blood(Insh’Allah Book 1)

Author: Steven Barnes

Published by Spectrum Literary Agency, Inc.(2011)

With all of the racial and national tension going up, I think I needed to sample a book that was fantasy but gave some historical “meat” at the same time. Who better than Steven Barnes? I am already a fan of his wife’s work.

Lion’s Blood is about an alternate history: where whites are the slaves and blacks are the cruel slave masters. It appears to be a series and already just from reading a few pages, I know I will be a fan of Steven Barnes’ imaginative work. I love when books are bold!

Why Did I Sample This Book?

  1. I heard of Lion’s Blood before through visiting a local library years ago.
  2. His wife, Tananarive Due, writes amazing fantasy/horror books.
  3. This book has received so many high praises already, maybe because it is bold, daring and definitely on time.

Let me know, does this seem like something you would read?

Comment below!

There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé(Book Review)

Morgan Parker
Blog design by Ericajean using Pixlr/Book Design Courtesy Tin House Books

4.5 Purple Hearts

There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyonce, Morgan Parker

Edition: Paperback

ISBN: 978-1941040539

Price: 14.95 USD(Get First Edition on Amazon for less)

*Book received for free from Netgalley.

With a title such as There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyonce, Morgan Parker is setting the reader up for poetry that will be evocative, provocative, enthralling and enriched, steeped in the black and black woman experience.

For a greater experience of Morgan Parker’s writing, check out her article on Afrofuturism that is amazing!

My Reaction:

Reading Parker’s poetry was like taking a deep dive into some subconscious quagmire that only those in touch with pop culture will sink into. However it was hard not to judge this book subjectively because with poems like “13 Ways of Looking at a Black Girl”,“Afro”, and “RoboBeyonce” I had a party in my head and I understood exactly where the speaker was coming from.

Take these words for instance:

“I’m too small to see but I’m listening.”

Or

“On the last day of the year I enter a scalding tub and think you away.”

Many poems I understood, just from living it.

However, some poems I came across seemed to be from a stream of consciousness that my mind just froze upon. That is okay. Stream of consciousness is good. I delve into it with my own writing too, creating abstract poems with my abstract brain.

This is a great book of poetry, I do recommend it to those who enjoy poetry infused with pop culture and plenty of interesting, uncharacteristic rhythm.

Sample Saturday(The Lonely Planet Travel Anthology)

lonely planet

The Lonely Planet Travel Anthology

Publisher: The Lonely Planet(Nov. 1, 2016)

Edited by Don George

Various Authors

Format: Kindle*

I have never just picked up a travel guide and read it. I get that there are travel writers out there, but as a fiction/memoir kind of chick, I thought it would be out of my league…

Why Did I Sample this Book?

  1. Contrary to my own belief, we can all learn from travel guides. Particularly how to describe people and places well.
  2. In this particular anthology, I learned about “brilliant suns” of Australia, the urge of happiness when a cabbie in Bangkok actually shows up to give you a lift and the powerful, yet silent friendship on a train that leads to a bedroom where even more silence happens.
  3. A travel essay/guide is essentially a brief memoir.
  4. Lastly, you feel as if you’ve traveled to the place yourself.

I read more than a few stories in here and hope to find more travel writing I enjoy.

Have an amazing and Blessed Resurrection Sunday/Easter!  🙂

*This anthology can be downloaded for free for two weeks from Freading.com!

Sample Saturday (Sycorax’s Daughters)

Sycorax27s-Daughters-200x300
Sycorax’s Daughters

 

Sycorax’s Daughters by Kinitra Brooks, PhD.

Publication Date: Cedar Grove Publishing(February 21, 2017)

Print and Kindle Editions Available

If you’re like me, you download free samples of interesting books on Kindle(app) to see if they are worth your dollars.

Every Saturday I’d like to feature up and coming books I’d like to read and share. We will see how this goes!

Why did I sample it?

  1. The first story begins with a woman named Thistle and a dude named Wilder going through a dark forest just to meet her mom…like who would do this? Spooky!
  2. I am just so tickled that this is a collection of 28 horror stories and 14 horror poems.
  3. The meaning behind Sycorax’s Daughter(Sycorax was the deceased sorceress in Shakespeare’s Tempest(1611)

If you have read the book already, let me know. I am actually thinking of ordering the print version when I can(hopefully soon!)

Until then I will put it on my Goodreads shelf.

Happy Reading!

🙂

Five Fiction Books That Changed My World

woman reading

Without further ado, here is the list!

  • 19 Minutes by Jodi Picoult, is hailed as a “raw and important work” about school violence. A teen is picked on mercilessly and eventually becomes something to be very afraid of. This book opened my eyes up to the seriousness of bullying.

We all know it is serious business, but Picoult wrote the story from an angle that felt as if many voices were speaking at once. I learned that writing with care and the art of research is important in any story.

This particular series follows a five thousand year old blonde vampire named Sita who we are supposed to hate, but I couldn’t help but relate. She is depicted as fully human with her own struggles and enemies.

I am not ashamed to say I cried a little. Perhaps because of the series ending and not necessarily what happens in the end..? Bottomline: If a vampire story can make me cry, then it was a good darn book. Also, if I can empathize with a wicked vampire, I can empathize with anyone, right?

  • Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews– need I say more? With Lifetime cranking out the books to television and Andrews’ books continue to pop up at Walmart, Bookstores and online in an unending ghost written foray, these books remain popular.

This book was probably one of the first books to keep me up at night.

There I was, 12-13 years old reading a gothic fiction about children being left in an attic so long that confusion, incest and other problems arose. That book made me understand that sometimes family is just in blood only. Anyone can hurt you.

Flowers in the Attic is one of those richly dark travesties of literary treasure and genius.

  • Seed to Harvest Series by Octavia E. Butler was a masterpiece. Still is. I bought the thick tome off of Amazon one year, maybe 2011, and dived right into it.

Patternmaster/Seed to Harvest, dates back to pre-slavery Africa where Anyanwu is gifted with shape shifting abilities, while Doro can literally jump his spirit self into other bodies. It awakened my own need to write sci/fi this good. It reminds me of the “Black” version of X-Men, but so deliciously written.

  • The Station Series* by Trish Marie Dawson gave me chills and sweet thrills. This book showed me that writing about a sensitive topic such as suicide can be dealt with using fantasy, research and great insight(and an amazing author!). In the series, Piper Willow dies and wakes up at The Station, where suicides go and become mentors and volunteers to people on earth who are considering suicide. The goal is to prevent people from committing suicide in the first place. Romance was high in this series too.

It gave me a new perspective on death in general.

It is not the end but a new station in existence. No one has the concrete answers but fiction allows us to play with what the answers could be.

Those are the five books which have changed my life in some way.

*The link will take you to a free Kindle copy of Dying to Forget, Book 1 in the station series.

**Affiliate links are sprinkled through this post. This simply means the link will take you to a site where you can learn more about the product and if you purchase anything I will receive coins for it. I appreciate you!

Please post your comments here and like or subscribe if you like the content. Thanks again to all of you reading and clicking around on my blog.Without

These posts are for you, the ultimate bookworm or writerworm 🙂