May Reads

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I actually got back on the reading wagon last month and knocked some books off both my Currently Reading and To Be Read lists. I’m proud of myself.

Instead of doing separate blog posts for each review, I’m just linking to my reviews on Goodreads with an excerpt. (Or, if they’re incredibly short reviews, posting the whole thing here.)

First, the digital books! Not necessarily in order of reading.

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Broken Sleep by Kaimana Wolff

4 out of 5 stars

I may be coming from a biased place because my mom is the author and I’m the publisher…but I don’t think that should count against my review. We’re all biased in some form; one of the first lessons of Journalism class was there was no such thing as objectivity. My relation to the author makes me no more biased than the fact that I went through a lot of the events in the book.

A harrowing exposé of abuse…hard to read, as someone who’s lived through it. But a necessary book — if you’ve ever wondered why a victim of abuse stays with their abuser, this book might shed some light on that for you.

My review at GoodReads.

WritePublishRepeatcoverWrite. Publish. Repeat. by Sean Platt and Johnny B. Truant with David Wright.

4 out of 5 stars

Non-fiction I read as part of my ongoing efforts to improve myself as a writer and my author career. 90% of the book I’m on board with, but they lost me near the end.

These guys know their stuff when it comes to writing and marketing, but they should stay away from topics they know nothing about. Dieting and weight loss are billion dollar industries that have nothing to do with individual health, worth, or work ethic.

At this point I won’t be picking up their fiction, though I planned on it, because I don’t know what kind of fatphobic ideas might lurk within. I’ll continue to read their non-fiction because I think they do know what they’re talking about when it comes to an indie author career — and I do think this book is an essential read if you’re an indie author and you don’t really know what the hell you’re doing — but in the end, their ignorance and perpetuation of fatphobic stereotypes has cost them a cross-pollinated (non-fiction to fiction) reader.

My review at GoodReads.

And now, the paperback/hardcover books!

May reads.

Medicine River, by Thomas King

3 out of 5 stars.

I picked it up because I love Thomas King. It’s not my favourite of his work, but I didn’t hate it.

Bottom line: if you’re used to Western (white dude!) literature as the dominant narrative, then you need to erase your expectations when picking up this book. It does not follow the dominant cultural narrative we have around literature: it deliberately bites its thumb at those expectations. It’s different, and that’s not always bad.

My review on Goodreads.

Tuesdays with Morrie, by Mitch Albom

4 out of 5 stars.

I went into this with the full knowledge that I would likely cry at the end. It’s a very quick read, but that doesn’t lessen the extent to which it tugs on one’s feels.

Well, I cried.

Can’t say much other than: beautiful book, quite touching, do recommend it.

Bloodchild and Other Stories, by Octavia E. Butler

4 out of 5 stars.

A collection of short stories with afterwords by the author, as well as 2 non-fiction essays at the end.

I really liked Speech Sounds. It’s a post apocalyptic story with a bit of hope at the end — basically my favourite type of story. And it’s sad, too. I don’t want to give away too much, but it’s good, and I recommend it. Possibly the best story in the book.

My review on Goodreads.

Hopefully I’ll do a similar post for June. I’m trying to actually read the myriad books in my collection instead of just smelling them to get my daily fix of book-scent.

-Katje

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Wishful thinking

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I recently got an iPad (the newest one) for various business reasons — mainly to see how ebooks look on it, and to eventually play around with creating books as apps (even though I’m not sure of the long-term viability of that idea, it’s my job as a publisher to, you know, keep on top of this kind of stuff).

So, I now have no less than three ebook reading apps on my iPad and a growing number of book apps. As there are a lot of free books in the iBooks store, I’ve got a huge collection of classics now.

And I find myself wishing that I could connect my GoodReads account directly to my ebook-reader apps so that I wouldn’t have to do anything to update my currently reading list.

There it is. The call of the incredibly lazy overwhelmed.

I just have trouble remember to update that I’m reading a book. Also, I read a lot when I travel, and a lot of times I’ll finish a book before I have a chance to get online again. Or be too jet-lagged to log in.

It’s difficult okay. 

Bellica!

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So, there was a bit of a mishap with Bellica — somehow my editor worked on the wrong (read: older, un-revised version) copy of Part 2 for about 8 hours. This has set us back a bit and Bellica should be printed by Friday — but not in my hands until Saturday; perhaps Sunday.

Regarding Availability of the Paperback

The first print run will be very small. Twenty copies; three of which are going out in the giveaway (which, by the way, you only have until midnight tonight to enter). I am selling the copies directly so you will have to talk to me if you want one. Once I run out of the first print run I’ll do another run; the size of it will be determined by how fast I sell the first 17 copies.

At this time I am not shipping outside Canada and the US. I wish I could but unfortunately shipping costs to other countries are prohibitively expensive and it’s a heavy book.

However I am looking into the possibility of permission-ing Bellica through EspressNet, which is the global network of Espresso Book Machines. What that means: you can go to a bookstore local to you that has an EBM and order a copy of my book. It will be printed within a matter of minutes; you pay for it; a royalty gets sent back to me and we’re both happy.

Once I decipher the literature out there referring to how to do it it will be done and Bellica (and all my other books, when they’re published) will be available worldwide. (A list of EBM locations worldwide.)

I don’t yet have a solid price for Bellica but it’s hovering at $26.99 CAD. I realize it’s a lot to spend on a new author and people have tight wallets these days, which is why I am bringing up the second option.

E-books

I am also releasing Bellica as an ebook for Kindle and e-readers that use the ePub format. The files should be uploaded on Friday and then Gods know how long it’ll take for them to show up for sale on Amazon and GoodReads. I anticipate it will be available in both locations no later than December 1st.

Currently those will be the two places one can buy Bellica. I am looking into Kobo and Nook stores but they’re complex and terrifying.

The price for the ebook will be $9.99 CAD.

So those are your two current options; I hope more will open up in the future. I also really hope that you consider picking up a copy of my book. I’ve worked really hard on it and I want people to read it.

If you live outside the US or Canada and cannot, for whatever reason, pick up an ebook version but still really want a copy…I am working on the answer for this. You may have to wait for a bit but I will find a way to get a copy of Bellica to you.