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Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

typing-clipart-typing-on-computerI’m humbled and thrilled to receive my first 5 star review for The King’s Consort-The Louise Rasmussen Story.

When a reader takes the time to write a review on Amazon, Goodreads, or their blog, they are not only reaching out to other readers, they are reaching out to the author. After countless hours, months, years, the writer sits on the edge of his/her seat, waiting to see if anyone out there actually enjoys the story, as they’ve told it. We are anxious mother hens, hovering over our chick, pushing it forward, clucking away, and full of nervous excitement.

Reviews also affect the discoverability of a writer’s work on on-line venues, and in bricks-and-mortar stores. Just like word-of-mouth, it helps spread the word about a new release, or a book that’s been around a while. Places like Amazon use something called algorithms to help place the book in line with others of it’s kind, and rise it in the ranks of scores of other books. The more reviews a book gets, the higher up the line it rises, thereby making it easier for potential readers to discover. No one seems to know exactly how these algorithms work, but it is vital to the success of a book, and of course, to the writer and publisher.

When considering a new book, I know I check the reviews first, just like I do when considering whether or not to book a hotel. It isn’t that I rely on that information only when buying a book, but when I see a pattern (positive or negative), it sways my decision-making. I combine that information with my opinion of the cover art and back cover blurb, and if I like what I see, I’ll lay my money down.

Reviews may also help bookstores decide which books they give valuable shelf space to. Their business is to sell books, so it makes sense that a bookstore is going to want to place books that are more likely to sell.

Finally, (honest) reviews help the writer determine whether or not they’ve hit their mark with the story. It gives us much needed feedback, and feeds the fires of inspiration to keep us moving ahead with the next book, and the next, and the next.

shout-outBut how do you write a review? Honestly, it’s easy. Once you’ve finished reading a book, go to Amazon and set up your (free) account (most countries have their own Amazon sites). Next, search for the title or author, and click on that book. This brings you to the book’s sales page. Just below the author’s name you’ll see a series of five stars. Beside that you’ll see a line that states how many reviews that particular book has. Click on that, and it’ll bring you to a new page that gives all the reviews that book has received to date. Beside the star review, you’ll see an area that says “Write a customer review”. Click on that and follow the prompts. If you’ve read a book on a Kindle or via Kindle app, at the end of the book you’ll be taken to a “review” page, so this is where you can easily leave a review. Amazon, and other e-venues, is trying to make this really easy for readers, because they know how valuable your feedback is.

As for the portion where you can leave a comment, it can be as long or as brief as you like. Read through a few others on that book or any others to get an idea. It doesn’t have to be brilliant. It doesn’t have to be perfectly worded. It just has to be honest. Typically, it’s helpful to explain what you liked (or didn’t like) about the book. In some cases you can give a brief synopsis (no spoilers though, please), or not, and a recommendation, such as “I’d highly recommend this book to other lovers of _____.”

Once you’ve submitted your review, Amazon will notify you that it has been accepted, and what’s really cool, is that if your review proves helpful to another reader, you’ll receive an email notification to tell you.

On behalf of all writers out there, and for me, thank you for your incredible support. It means more to us than you know!

Finally, do you read reviews before purchasing? If so, tell us why. If not, share your reasons.

 

 

 

 

 

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Highly Recommend

Highly Recommend

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Well Worth The Read

The Seven Year Dress took me back to a terrible time in Germany’s history – the Holocaust. Told from the point of view of a young girl coming of age, the reader comes to understand what that experience must have been like. This heart-wrenching story had me in tears, smiling, and sick at the many inexplicable injustices done to other human beings. It also reminded me of what’s important – life, love, humanity. Mahurin has penned an incredible tale that will reside with me for a very long time. For those who love historical fiction with real grit and honesty, I highly recommend this book.

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Chance Encounters

Chance Encounters

Freelance travel journalist, editor, and producer, Janna Graber, has done a terrific job with this book! Some of you may remember my interview with her over at Christina Hamlett’s blog, You Read It Here First. As someone who also loves to travel, but not nearly as much as Janna and her journalist friends, I became intrigued with the life and experiences of people who travel this globe for a living. I had long suspected that the memories would be as much about the people met along the way, as the incredible vistas and locales. Turns out, I was right.

Chance Encounters is a compilation of wonderful stories by travel writers for people who love to travel, or wish they could! Each personal essay featured is a glimpse into another life, another time, another place, and reminds us that we are connected in ways we often don’t initially recognize. More than stories about the places travelers visit, Chance Encounters focuses on the people who make the experiences richer. Anyone who has ever gone someplace new can relate to these tales of adventure, serendipity, and chance. This is a book worth reading and keeping. Well done, Janna and friends!

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Godless

Godless

 

 

 

 

 

Jeff Rasley’s newest book, Godless, sounds a little misleading. Rather than expounding on the benefits of not believing in God at all, he delves into the theory that if we can put aside our prejudices regarding religion, doctrines, dogma, theology, and politics, we can and should be able to look at each other as human beings sharing this incredible planet. With fresh, insightful thoughts on what it means to be a human being and spiritual person vs a particular religious or political animal, he reminds us of the importance of seeing each other for who we are rather than what we are or what we believe. Using down-to-earth language and open dialogue, Rasley encourages people to become more attuned to the human experience we all share. This is a must-read book for anyone seeking answers to the God question, or who just want a different perspective to some age-old questions surrounding religion.

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Haylee and the Traveler's Stone

Haylee and the Traveler’s Stone

In this latest installment of the Haylee series, Redfern takes Haylee and the reader back in time to 1849 during California’s Gold Rush. Rich in detail and imagination, Haylee and The Traveler’s Stone is sure to draw readers deeper into this wonderful coming-of-age tale of adventure and surprises. Can’t wait to see what this author has up her sleeve for her next book!

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Haylee Need To Feed

Haylee Need To Feed

 

 

 

 

 

Teens go through many changes and metamorphoses, but Haylee’s journey is a little different. Haylee is changing a little more than most girls who are becoming young women, because she’s also becoming…something else. Just what that something else is, Haylee’s not certain, but it scares her. And it should. Haylee’s experience of “otherness” has just taken on a whole new meaning. Now, she must find out what she is, and how to deal with the frightening new abilities, and needs, she’s discovered.

 

Haylee-Need To Feed is the second installment in Lisa Redfern’s new series, which is aimed at YA readers who love to be drawn into mystery. So, if you enjoy science fiction, fantasy, and YA novels, then you’ll want to check out this series.

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Playing Mrs. Kingston

Playing Mrs. Kingston

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you love the intriguing twists and turns of a murder mystery, then Tony Lee Moral’s Playing Mrs. Kingston may be just what you’re looking for. When actress, Catriona Benedict, is asked to play the role of a lifetime as a rich man’s wife, she’s convinced her luck is about to change, and it does. But change doesn’t always mean for the better. Soon after her faked marriage to a wealthy playboy, Catriona’s husband is killed. But rather than reaping the rewards as a rich widow, she’s suddenly catapulted into a murder mystery that must be solved if she’s to walk away with her life and freedom intact. Ripe with vivid detail, Moral keeps the reader wondering “who dunnit” throughout it’s pages.

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