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Let’s talk books!

Just Read

The Strange Case of Finley Jayne (The Steampunk Chronicles) by Kady Cross

Why I picked it up: Lindsay Buroker mentioned it in her Fantasy-Steampunk E-Books list post and it was free. Win. This is a prequel to the Steampunk Chronicles of which The Girl in the Steel Corset (The Steampunk Chronicles) is the first book.

What I liked: Suspense with some horror, along the lines of Frankenstein, and the steampunk elements were seamlessly woven in. I thoroughly enjoyed the world Kady Cross built. The MC, Finley, was interesting without being over the top. While it stands alone, this freebie did exactly what the author was after…hooking my interest to read the series.

What I disliked: There was no real character arc but, as this is a prequel, I expect there will be more of that in the full-length stories within the series.


The Plot Thickens: 8 Ways to Bring Fiction to Life by Noah Lukeman

Why I picked it up: I’d seen it recommended. It sounded worth a try if I could get my hands on a used copy…which I did.

What I like: The way this book is broken down. The Characterization sections have some thought provoking exercises. In fact, all the sections have good exercises. I think the Journey section is my favorite so far with Profound (realization and action) and Surface (recognizable marker of growth) character journeys. I’m looking forward to the Suspense, Conflict, Context, and Transcendency sections. I may even try plotting the shiny via this book.

What I dislike: The Characterization sections are mostly lists and focus on the physical (outer) aspects of character before exploring the inner working of character which I feel is backwards. Overall, I’m finding more I like than dislike about this craft book.

Will Read

That’s a really good question. I’ve been struggling to start Unholy Magic (Downside Ghosts, Book 2) by Stacia Kane. I’m sure the problem is the amount of time since reading the first book and I may need to re-read Unholy Ghosts (Downside Ghosts, Book 1).

Perhaps The 12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women: A Portable Mentor by Gail McMeekin

Why I picked this up: I saw a number of reviews and recommendations online. Words like “Empowering” and “Inspiring” and “Uplifting” peppered everything I saw about this book. One reviewer even said something to the effect of, “I felt I was sitting at the kitchen table getting the best news from a group of friends.” Sounded worth the read.

What I expect to like: The book is divided into three main “gateways” — Engaging Your Creativity, Mastering You Challenges, and Actualizing Creative Results (the Power of Positive Priorities). There are interviews, bit-sized memoirs, and quotes throughout. Each chapter has challenges, questions, that look like they are designed to help unlock creativity.

What I expect to dislike: Can’t think of anything from my glance though the book.

What are you reading and loving at the moment?