Thursday, July 22, 2010

Amazon Free eBooks 2

Bright of the Sky (Entire and the Rose Book 1) by Kay Kenyon
All in Time by Ciana Stone
Daniel X: Demons and Druids (Free Preview) by James Patterson (I don't usually put up the 'previews' but I thought some might be interested.)

Found a couple more Ellora's Cave Naughty Nooners
Reaper's Justice by Charlotte Boyett-Compo
Skin Magic by Kim Knox
Thrill of the Hunt by Nathalie Gray

And here's some Star Wars books:
Star Wars: Lost Tribe of the Sith 1: Precipice by John Jackson Miller
Star Wars: Lost Tribe of the Sith 2: Skyborn by John Jackson Miller
Star Wars: Lost Tribe of the Sith 3: Paragon by John Jackson Miller

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Amazon Free eBooks

I'm going to try to make this a regular thing, where I'll add any new ebooks I find on Amazon for free.

Mozart's Blood by Louise Marley
The Hunters by Jason Pinter
Sullivan's Justice by Nancy Taylor Rosenberg
Falling Out of Fashion by Karen Yampolsky
St. Dale by Sharyn McCrumb

Friday, July 16, 2010

Is There a Place for Negativity in Reviews?

Karen had a post over at Karen Knows Best asking about the 'If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all' ideology. I responded there as well, but my response got rather long and slightly off the main topic, and I decided to bring the rest of it over here.

Like I said at Karen's blog, I used to be one of those people. You know, the ones that never have a bad thing to say about, well anything. It even went so far as to my jobs. I had a job once that I absolutely hated. The pay was bad, they were giving more and more responsibility without the commiserate raises and titles, and the managers micro-managed everyone to the point where I constantly felt they were looking over my shoulder. When I quit, after finally finding another position, I told my bosses that the reason I was quitting was because the other job was closer to home, better pay, and a more advanced position. These were all true, but it wasn't the whole truth. Before my last day I'd talked with plenty of friends and family about the situation they convinced me that if I didn't say anything then nothing would ever change. So when the Human Resources department called for my exit interview I told them ALL the reasons. That was the start of it for me.

I realized that sometimes the negative can be just as good and helpful as the positive. Perhaps even more so. I've tried really hard to apply that to every aspect of my life. There's a way to say negative things and still remain respectful - I don't like to 'bash' anyone. I try to just say what problems I had, whether it's with a job, or a movie, or a book.

I know how much goes into writing a novel, so if an author put in all that effort don't they deserve my honesty at least? If something didn't work for me, don't they want to know about it?

I still have a hard time writing negative reviews because I know the effort that goes into it, and that even if it didn't work for me there are often others out there that it'll work wonderfully for. But I know that I can't gloss over the things I didn't like and only say good things. Then I wouldn't be being honest.

Plus, if I'm going to take the time to do a review for other readers to look at and use to help them make a decision, I feel that I owe it to them to tell them truthfully what I thought about it and why.

I do think negative reviews have their place, and shouldn't be looked upon as bad just because they're negative. I know that negative reviews have sometimes made me buy and read the book because what they said intrigued me.

I've heard it said that any press is good press. Talking about a book is better than being ignored completely, isn't it?

What do you think?

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Free eBooks on Amazon

I was going through my e-books list, and realized that of the 400 I have loaded on my Kindle, quite a few of them were free. I thought others might want to see what Amazon has available for free. They're not always easy to find, so I decided to do a nice list. Obviously these change on a semi regular basis. Some have been free for months, some are only free for days or a couple of weeks. This list is probably mostly romance, though there are some thrillers, mysteries, fantasy and sci-fi books in here too.

These first two groupings are shorter stories, but there are quite a few of them.

Cerridwen Press Scintillating Samples

Stakeout for Love by Christie Walker Bos
Goodbye Blues, Hello Love by Christie Walker Bos
Tween Hopeful and Hopeless by Sam Cheever
Unexpected Comfort by Kelly Ferjutz
Song of the Swan by Kelly Ferjutz
Waiting at Eros by Kelly Ferjutz
Wild Woman by Cara Lyle
Red Satin by Barbara Miller
The Next Big Thing by Madelle Morgan
Christmas Scandal-Not! by Jeanne Savery
Just Like Old Times by Hetty St. James
Message for Minerva by Jean Hart Stewart

Ellora's Cave Naughty Nooners

Sin Eater by Evangeline Anderson
Haunted by the Past by Riley Ashford
Erotique by Nicole Austin
Master's Thief by Nicole Austin
Scoring by Mari Carr
Kayla's Birthday Present by Ashlyn Chase
Nocked for a Loop by Sam Cheever
Seychelles Sunset by Lynne Connolly
Larkspur by Anny Cook
The Bad Widow by Barbara Elsborg
His Voice, His Command by Vonna Harper
Playing Hardball by Madison Hayes
Hot Moon Rising by Desiree Holt
Her Very Special Robot by Ann Jacobs
Eland by Allyson James
Tessa's Ambassador by Cyna Kade
Hunting Evander by Kim Knox
Door Prize by Lynn LaFleur
Changing Perspective by Marilu Mann
Lap Dance by Sally Painter
Danu, The Return by Sally Painter
Not Just an Orgy by Sally Painter
Shapeshifter's Craving by Lee Pearce
Interlude in Pearl by Emily Ryan-Davis
Take Me by Grace Samuels
Desire in the Dark by Naima Simone
First Taste by Paisley Smith
Outlaw Lovers Dossier by Jan Springer
Saturday Night Fever by Ciana Stone
Better Late Than Never by Savannah Stuart
Maui Heat by Ari Thatcher
Spirit's Release by Tea Trelawny

The rest of these are various publishers so they're just in alphabetical order by Author Last Name

My Beautiful Disaster by Michelle Buckman
Critical Care (Mercy Hospital Book 1) by Candace Calvert
Baby Bonanza by Maureen Child
Crime Scene at Cardwell Ranch by B.J. Daniels
The Bride's Baby by Liz Fielding
All Tied Up (Pleasure Inn Book 1) by Cathryn Fox
Light of Eidon (Legends of the Guardian-King Book 1) by Karen Hancock
Kiss Me Deadly by Michele Hauf
Irresistible Forces by Brenda Jackson
Winter's Passage (Iron Fey Book 1.5) by Julie Kagawa
Slow Hands by Leslie Kelly
First Flight (A Tor.com Original) by Mary Robinette Kowal
Darkfever (Fever Series Book 1) by Karen Marie Moning
Hide in Plain Sight by Marta Perry
The Heir by Paul Robertson
His Lady Mistress by Elizabeth Rolls
The Wild's Call by Jeri Smith-Ready
Overtime (A Tor.com Original) by Charles Stross
Wicked House of Rohan (House of Rohan prequel) by Ann Stuart
A Memory of Wind (A Tor.com Original) by Rachel Swirsky
Eros, Philia, Agape (A Tor.com Original) by Rachel Swirsky
Dancing in the Moonlight by RaeAnne Thayne
My Soul to Lose (Soul Screamers prequel) by Rachel Vincent
Once a Cowboy by Linda Warren
Speed Dating by Nancy Warren

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Review: Bonds of Justice by Nalini Singh

Max Shannon is a human cop for the New York Enforcement with a gift that allows him peace. His mind has a strong natural shield that excludes him from the suggestions that are sometimes planted in his fellow officers' minds by the Psy. This has also precluded him from rising in the ranks, but Max doesn't mind as long as he is sure he's the one making the decisions in regards to his cases. Knowing this it comes as a huge surprise when he's tapped as a special investigator by a Psy Councilor, and not just any Psy Councilor, but Nikita Duncan herself. And he won't be working alone...

Sophia Russo has been a J (Justice) for over 12 years. The long active period has left her with terrifyingly thin shields and she knows it's just a matter of time before she's called in for that final rehabilitation that all Js must either succumb to, or escape from through death. Having first met Max on the case of a sociopath, Sophia was intrigued by, and attracted to, him - something a perfect Psy would never be. Sophia is a long ways from the perfect Psy though, and has been for longer than she's been a J. Knowing her interest in Max will only lead her more quickly to her final end, she's relieved (and disappointed) when she's out of his presence. But then she's called to be Max's liaison and partner on this new deadly case for Nikita.

Can they find out who's killing those close to Nikita before they strike again? Will the bonds Max and Sophia form be strong enough to save them both?

I have to admit, in this world of the Psy/Changelings I was not that interested in the main couple going into this book because of the human hero. I'm not afraid to admit when I am wrong. And boy was I wrong. At a glance humans are the very lowest of the three races. They don't have the mental abilities that the Psy do. They don't have the strength and enhanced senses that the Changelings do. They're thought of as less by many Psy and Changelings. But Max is a fantastic hero. One hundred percent human, he's got an intelligent, quick mind and strong ethics, added to the fact that he's very protective, totally loyal, persistant and incredibly, absolutely sexy-as-hell.

Sophia, on the other hand, is kind, caring, smart and intriguing all with an underlying core of steel. She's strong and vulnerable. Sweet and sexy (as Max would say). She's been a J for longer than most others, and yet she continues to push that, in the end, things are fair. It's such a likable quality, and one that could easily push her over the edge into either too good, or not good enough. The balance is perfectly attained, and Sophia is a character that I'll love for many years to come. She faces some of the same issues that most of the Psy that are still in the Net, but with new, heart-breaking twists.

Max and Sophia are now some of my favorite characters in the story, and I hope that we get to see more of them in the future.

There is a lot going on in Bonds of Justice, with the Psy, the Changelings, and the relationships between many of them. We get to see many of our favorites, including Lucas and Sascha, Faith and Vaughn, Clay and Tally, Nikita, and (my personal favorite enigma) Kaleb. The depth that Nalini Singh continues to give each and every character - whether they've been in the story for books, or a couple of pages - always amazes me.

The plot, attempts to get at Nikita through those closest to her, is solid. It'd be tempting to think that her calling in a human/J combo to figure this out is out of the realm of possibility, but it's not only realistic, it's addressed by the characters themselves. And the reasoning makes the story all that more intriguing. The mystery itself, and the continued work with the serial killer that brought Max and Sophia together in the first place, are too interesting for me to spoil here.

But the real joy here is the fabulous love story between Max and Sophia. I have to admit that there were a few times I had to put down my Kindle in order to wipe the tears from my eyes. The way they come together, with trust, and openness, love and honesty spoke directly to my heart.

Being the tenth book in the Psy/Changeling series I wouldn't recommend starting with Bonds of Justice. Ms. Singh does a fabulous job with providing all the relevant information needed to read it as a stand-alone, but you'd be missing out on some fantastic tension, world-building and romance to skip the previous entries in this wonderful series. See the reading order here for a complete list of the Psy/Changeling series.

Every time I read Nalini Singh's books I think 'she can't possibly get any better than this' ... and then she does. Nalini continues to blow me away with a detailed world, beautiful love story, and fascinating characters. Bonds of Justice is an absolute must read. Intrigue, danger, passion and more fill the pages, tempting you, forcing you, to keep reading well into the night.

Grade: A+

Book Link | Amazon (print) | Kindle | B&N (print) | nook | Borders (print) | kobo | Sony | Book Depository | Berkley
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