One river made it fast way down a steep slope, singing through deep gorges, bouncing over and around boulders and rocky bottoms. It was lively and deep green with jaunty white wave caps and spoke with a joyous voice.
The other river, old and heavily ladened with dirt, had crossed flatter, used-up lands. It spoke of outrage in measured tones. All it said was edged with melancholy; its voice resonant and deep. It lumbered it’s brown way into the confluence.
I sat in the boat and watched them mate – so unlikely and so passionately. Their songs morphed into one voice – rich, powerful, agile, with clarity enough to force a moan and sigh and flush from every one of us in that boat. The new river took us for a very dangerous ride.
Here I am again at a confluence. For the third time I am life careening into death. For me, death number three is turning out to be the most dangerous ride of all.
I found many punctuation errors in Persephone’s Seeds: for example, hyphens are used when dashes are required (I counted this as one error, but found nearly ten instances), missing punctuation marks, and misused punctuation marks. But the bigger problem here lies in the writing, which was complex in all of the wrong ways.
The punctuation problems meant that several sentences were reduced to confusion, and while this sometimes had great comedic effect it mostly just interfered with the flow of my reading. The author frequently contradicts herself, often within single sentences; and in her search for a free-spirited style she has sacrificed clarity of meaning. And why no page numbers? surely this was an oversight rather than a choice?
Her writing is too self-consciously different, it lacks flow, and I lost patience with it before I’d even finished theh first page. Despite myself I pushed on but had only reached the third page before I found my allotted number of problems. Had I found this while browsing I wouldn’t have got past the back cover copy, which tells me nothing about the book but quite a lot about the author’s peculiar relationship with rivers. This is a valiant effort but I’m afraid it just doesn’t work for me.
She chose him, and bent his passion…
the Dark Muse will come to find there’s more to mortal love than words…
Within a quill’s ink, the story of Jason will bleed muses and myths, romance, seduction, and betrayal.
Jason, a miller from 18th Century Carolina, seeks to escape a loveless marriage while on an Atlantic voyage to Italy, aboard a ship whose captain hides a pirate past. As he watches his wedding ring disappear beneath the waves, he’s chosen to alter his path. Within his yearning to find true love, is a hidden passion for rhyme and verse. Taking strength from his words, he builds relationships with others onboard who share his passionate nature, including a supernatural muse who shapes and his words and ideas, and ultimately, the truths he finds within himself.
When his poetry becomes more than a connection between himself and his emotions, Jason finds the opportunity for love that he seeks. But another has already claimed him. Exotic and erotic, the Dark Muse clings to his senses, forming the kiss on his lips.
Immortal, Leanan Sidhe is a Queen of the Fae, and daughter of the Sea Gods. As Jason holds a hand out to the love he’s been seeking, at lust crashes like Atlantic waves on the rock of his soul, his experiences with both will be defined
In terms of betrayal…
One of the reasons for publishing our work is that we want it to find readers; and we want those readers to enjoy our writing, and to get something back from it which adds value to their lives. Unfortunately there is little chance of that happening with Dark Muse.
The book contains the usual sprinkling of misplaced commas, and a good few problems with other punctuation marks too. Those problems could be fixed by a competent copy editor: but the biggest problem with this book would still remain.
The text is quite remarkably over-written. There’s far too much description; the language is so unnecessarily complex that I often found myself struggling to understand the writer’s intentions; and I found several sentences which made no sense at all due, I suspect, to the writer not quite understanding some of the words he chose to use, or perhaps using them because he liked their sound and rhythm and didn’t actually care what they meant.
Add to that a lot of typesetting problems, a tiny font, and that cover image and you can probably understand why I read so little of this book: just three out of six hundred and eighteen pages. I strongly urge this writer to consider paring back his writing, and to aim for a much sparser style, if he wants to build himself a readership.
In “Take It Easy: Untangling The Internet,” author Ohad Kravchick guides you through an easy, step-by-step process to using the Internet, by providing:
> An introduction to the Internet and the benefits of using it.
> A detailed walk-through with illustrations for using your computer and connecting to the Internet.
> Real-life Internet scenarios (websites), containing simple and more advanced examples, complete with easy to follow illustrations.
> Directions showing how to find the information you need.
> A list of useful Internet locations for your knowledge, finance, chores, hobbies, and entertainment.
A MUST GUIDE FOR ALL INTERNET NEWCOMERS!
Ohad Kravchick has been a professional computer instructor for more than 8 years; he is focused on ease of learning. He earned his master’s degree in Computer Science from Fordham University. He lives with his wife in New York City.
For more information about this booklet and its publication, log in to: http://www.takeiteasyseries.com
To order more copies call 1-877-377-3311 (toll free)
I use the internet a lot: I use it for research, for networking, and for blogging. I’m not, however, terribly computer-literate: I depend on my lovely friend Clever Andy to rescue me from technical tangles and I’m frequently grateful to him for all his help. Consequently, I was looking forward to reading this slim book in the hope that I might improve my knowledge of all things internet. Sadly, I was disappointed.
This is the single most confusing instruction manual I have ever encountered, and I include in that list the Italian instructions for a fridge which accompanied the DVD player I bought recently.
I am sure that Mr Kravchick is a lovely man; he’s a professional computer instructor and I bet when he talks to people in his classes he helps them enormously. But he has no aptitude for writing. His sentences range from confusing to unintelligible, and his errors in grammar mean that he often make statements which are completely wrong. I’m very sorry to have to be so damning. But this is a terribly badly written book and I can only see it confusing anyone desperate enough to turn to it for help. I read just three of its sixty-three pages, despite my best attempts to be generous.
After inheriting a diary written by a 19th century ship’s cook, together with a handwritten will and USA naturalisation papers I was inspired to tell the story of the voyage of the Wave Queen, a merchant vessel, from Shoreham, England to Valparaiso, Chile in the year 1872.
Three years of research and the book became a fictional adventure story based on fact.
The hero, Charles Hamilton-Bashford is an eighteen year old Eton School-boy. He recklessly squanders his five thousand pound annual allowance and being hard-pressed for the payment of debts, begs his father to give him an advance. On refusal he in his desperation steals and forges his father’s cheque to settle his debts.
Charles’ father, a retired Major and a respected Magistrate, discovers the forgery and sends Charles to serve on a cargo ship separating him from his sweetheart, Florry.
Charles escapes before the ship sails, and reaches his aunt ‘s London home only to be recaptured and sent back to the Wave Queen.
Meanwhile Florry is propelled into a series of tumultuous events.
What adventures will befall them ?
Will he returned to England?
Will he ever be re-united with Florry?
The Wave Queen is full of careless errors. I found misplaced commas, missing quotation marks, inconsistent formatting, comma splices, and some random capitalisations. Charles, its central character, uses a modern idiom throughout while his father talks more like Mr. Banks, the father in Mary Poppins; and the heavies who visit Charles in order to encourage him to pay his debts complete our Disney picture by talking a pastiche of English which owes more to Dick Van Dyke than to 1872, the year in which this book is set.
The author has failed quite spectacularly with some of her more basic research: for example, she provides Charles with an annual allowance of £5,000 which equates to an income of £2.7m today which could be possible, I suppose, but it’s a heck of an amount for an eighteen-year-old to have unsupervised access to while at boarding school.
The text lacks detail, colour and sophistication and despite my very best attempts to be lenient, I read just three pages of it.
A self-compiled collection of modern musings. This publication ranges from the political to the comical, from the dark to the romantic.
Following the author’s journey throughout university we travel through his mind, his nights out and his emotions. While his future wife lives in a different country, he drinks too much, he parties too hard and he tries his best to hide the pain.
We move on through to his questioning of the world around him, his job, his musical ambitions and watch as he moves to the capital in search of dreams.
This ironic but beautiful collection of poems will remind you of the best of times and the worst of times.
This is the first part in an on-going collection of thoughts.
Reading this slim collection of poems I felt as though I was spying on the author: it reads like an adolescent’s journal-scribblings, and just isn’t ready to be published.
Poetry is one of the most concentrated art-forms there is: to work, poetry has to be lyrical, intense, fresh and pure, and I’m afraid that I don’t see a single one of those qualities in Boyd’s work. His poems look like real poetry on the page—or at least, they would if the book had been formatted a little better, and the typesetting had been carried out by someone more skilled at the job—but I’m afraid that’s as far as the resemblance goes.
If Mr Boyd wants to attract a decent readership then I strongly advise him to read a lot of good poetry and to do his best to develop an understanding of rhythm, imagery and depth before he publishes any more of his work. I read just three pages out of thirty-one, despite my repeated attempts at leniency.
For Katherine Orr the words “I love you” are not enough. Only a demonstrative expression of her husband Jayce’s love can rescue their relationship. But Jayce’s personal demons prevent him from giving her this even though he knows that she is all that stands between him and a descent into chaos.
Simultaneously, Bryan struggles to repair the breach of love in his life caused by the death of his daughter. But his wife Jayce’s sister, grows ever more distant. Charismatic social activist Faith, who longs for love but fears she will lose herself in it, unwittingly becomes the catalyst for change in the lives of all four characters.
The paths of these four converge toward a tragic event as each struggles to decipher the intricacies of love lost and love found. Each discovers in their own way that love is the living core of human existence and that how we love defines who we are.
Visit http://www.mdyetmetaphor.com/blog after each chapter for another dimension of this internet-enhanced novel.
Michael Dyet holds an Honours B.A., summa cum laude, in Creative Writing from York University. His professional writing experience spans journalism to marketing copywriting. Until the Deep Water Stills, his debut novel, weaves together memorable characters with a tightening web of external events. It ranges from lyrical to provocative in its style and from introspective to universal in its message.
Michael Dyet, the author of Until the Deep Water Stills, has an impressive list of qualifications and experience which I hoped would be reflected in his writing: he has a BA in creative writing, and has experience in journalism and copywriting. And he’s tied this novel to a website to add a further level of meaning to his text, which has the potential to be interesting.
The problem is that when I read a book I don’t want to have to keep referring back to the internet to get the full story. I want a book to be self-contained and complete: its own little world, into which I can disappear. Clicking about on the internet will drag me out of that world: it’s a distraction, and one which I found only detracted from my experience of this book.
And what an experience it was… the book is horribly over-written. Here is its first paragraph:
Shattering glass rescued Katherine from her dream. Aftershocks mingled in her half-awake brain with the elusive church bells now retracted seven years into the past. Jayce’s arm had knocked a water glass of the night table as he shifted in bed. How strangely prophetic, she thought, that he should fall into complicity with her dream. He did not hear the crash just as he did not hear the bells in her dream.
This sort of overwriting is neither literary nor clever: it’s just overdone (and bear in mind here that literary fiction is my genre-of-choice: I am not unaware of its conventions or standards). Dyet’s writing is far too complicated, and he often favours that complication over clarity and meaning. The text is thick with clever-sounding phrases, many of which make little sense; and I found a lot of clichés buried in his overdone language.
The back-cover copy is predictably weak; the punctuation clean enough, although I did pick up a few problems with it as I read. But overall, this book fails because it is so very badly over-written. I read just three of its three hundred and ten pages, but it felt more like fifteen.
The bouncing boy lives a life of ridicule and misfortune until one day his help was needed to save his village from a stinking problem. An exciting adventure ensues with the bouncing boy and an unlikely comrade, an elder from the village. Will this duo survive the trip to find the solution to save the village?
The Bouncing Boy is an entertaining modern day fairy tale enjoyed by kids 1-100 years old.
This is a singularly unattractive book. The illustrations are off-putting, and very uneven: that awful cover illustration is repeated inside, not once but twice, and after that, the illustrations change entirely in both style and sophistication (I suspect that they are produced by photoshopping photographs, but can’t be sure). The text clearly comes from a novice writer, and shows the usual mistakes: hyphens used instead of dashes, misplaced punctuation, odd capitalisations, occasional contradictions, errors in grammar, and a few sentences which made no sense at all. A lot of these problems could have been resolved by careful edit: but this writer would do better to work on becoming a better writer, and then write a better book. I read just three of its 54 pages.
What is it that makes us straight or gay?
Is it environment or genetics?
Choice, chance or maybe even persuasion?
The answer to this age-old question is one that fledgling writer Margaret Allen sets out to discover as she endeavors to complete her first book. Taking on a subject she believes she knows well, she begins a very human odyssey, examining the lives of gay women, all of whom come from diverse backgrounds and mindsets.
Among those whom we meet are —
the florist, whose parents try to “cure” her of her homosexuality;
the twins who, separated at birth, live their lives at opposite ends of the economic spectrum;
the radiant redhead and her three failed marriages;
the poet who spent most of her young adult years as a nun;
the Kentucky woman who, as a new bride, makes a rather shocking discovery;
and the non-verbal, wheelchair-bound woman, who is a political activist with an extraordinary ability to communicate.
As we share in their deeply personal narratives, Margaret’s book ultimately raises the question: “Are relationships between two women really all that different than heterosexual ones?”
Outside the Lavender Closet brings to life a collection of contemporary stories inspired by actual women and true events.
Martha A Taylor’s Outside the Lavender Closet: Inspired by True Stories is affectionately-written and has an easy charm to it: I genuinely liked the narrator and her group of friends and I wanted the book to do well, but in the end it was let down by a series of careless errors which include all the usual suspects: punctuation, spelling, grammar, homophone substitution, cliché, and some rather odd logic.
That list of errors sounds much more damning than it should. There were lots of errors, and the text is often clumsy: in order to bring this book up to a publishable standard it needs to be completely rewritten, to sort out all the confusion and unbelievable dialogue; it needs a very strong edit to make it coherent and tight; and it needs a full copy-edit to clear away all those irritating errors. That’s a lot of work, none of which would be worth doing on a text which was completely substandard: but I think it’s worth doing here because despite all of its problems this one has a warmth and a character to it which most of the books I’ve reviewed here lack. It might well turn out to be a bit of a treasure if it were properly worked up. As it is, it’s just not good enough, I’m afraid, and I read just three of its one hundred and forty-nine pages.
Of Dreams and Realities is a splendid new collection of poems that proves insightful in its reach and elemental in its grasp. This collection is industrious and sly—a bit of hardworking magic in the everyday subtleties of life.
Frank Louis Johnson’s poetry is ironic, charming, and sincere. It contextualizes dreams and realities against the broad canvas of reverie and aspiration. His is a veracious world, delightful, authentic and inspired—his poetry sees the glass half full, not half empty, with verses that rhyme and make merry no matter how dark the day or hour. Timeless in their scope, the poems of this, his second full-length collection, are pure inspiration.
I suspected that Of Dreams and Realities was going to be bad when I read the back cover copy: it’s nebulous and full of hyperbole and while it does point out that the book is a collection of rhyming poetry, it tells the reader nothing else. Consequently, it fails in its purpose, which is to sell the book to potential readers.
And then I came to the poetry. I found random capitalisations, sloppy punctuation, and all sorts of inversions and clichés. Several of the rhymes didn’t actually rhyme; and the concept of meter is abused in every way imaginable. I found my fifteenth problem with the text on the first line of page three (out of just thirty-nine pages) and if I do read any more of this book it will be due to my compulsive case of editorial voyeurism, and not because of my appreciation of the poetry it contains.
The Harris Family, America’s most notorious fiction crime family of her time, is thirsting for one thing: blood. Faced with their most fierce rival to date, the Harris’ will stop at nothing to rest assured that their nemesis is at least six feet below anyone else’s reach. And with their biggest opponent finally out of the way, the Harris’ can taste the sweet flavour of pure vengeance on the tip of their tongues…and they’re salivating for their full meal.
Nick Miller can’t wait to get off of work so he can escape the madness surrounding him. From constant memories of his suppressed past to continuous news coverage of ‘Cleopatra’s’ death, Nick is aching for relief of such a mentally draining day. So much so, that he finds this comfort in the wrong hands. Will this chance encounter open a door that leads to the secrets behind Nick’s past? Or will his lapse of judgement cost him his last breath?
As Nick’s world collides with that of the blood thirsty Harris Family, he comes face to face with the one thing that terrifies him more than the thought of dying: the truth about his life.
Secrets Unveiled is written in a very melodramatic style. The author’s reliance on single-line paragraphs and broad hints of bad things to come results in a choppy read and a confusing, overwritten text which is adolescent and angsty rather than intellectual or analytical. I read just three pages out of what looks like a very dreary 319 in order to find my quota of fifteen errors.
LIFE CYCLES is a ground-breaking new theory on what life is all about. It is both controversial and evidence-based and states that we live our lives in symbolically repeatable twelve year cycles. There are two important years and this is where we see fate take a hand in unusual ways.
Designed to entertain and inform; details from the public record are used to dissect the lives of world leaders, showbiz personalities, criminals and ordinary citizens. You will learn about your life’s symbolic meaning and be introduced to a whole range of new terms and icons.
You won’t read anything quite as original and intriguing and you will never look at your life the same way again.
Life Cycles has an eye-catching cover which I liked, despite the lack of information it gave me about its genre; and its central premise—that the same twelve-year cycle resonates through all our lives—is interesting enough.
However, the book is let down by poor writing, confused and sloppy logic, the author’s preference for rhetoric over substance, and the lack of any real information in the text, which is all based on rumour, conjecture, supposition and hype. I counted six clichés in the back cover copy alone. The book lacks any real substance and I didn’t even finish the prologue before finding my full quota of fifteen errors in this one.