Henk-Jan van der Klis

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Henk-Jan van der Klis's favorite authors on Smashwords


Smashwords book reviews by Henk-Jan van der Klis

  • Let's Get Digital: How To Self-Publish, And Why You Should on Sep. 18, 2011
    (no rating)
    David Gaughran is a 33-year old Irish writer, living in Sweden, who spends most of his time traveling the world, collecting stories, and writing about them. In Let’s Get Digital – How to self-publish and why you should Gaughran shares recent and comprehensive insights on self-publishing to (aspiring) authors. In Part One Digital Revolution the challenges facing both publishers, authors and literary agents cause a burning platform. Print is doomed, traditional brick-and-mortar book shops will follow the path of travel agents. The “800lb gorilla” Amazon dominates markets of both print and electronic books. Especially in the US e-book dominance has grown rapidly. Is there still a future for writers? Yes, by self-publishing, cutting the middle men, and practice long tail paradigm, made famous by Chris Anderson. In Part 2 Digital Self-Publishing the author leads you through the 10 steps of publishing, from writing a story, getting it edited, finding a proper cover, uploading and pricing at e-book sellers and getting reviews. Marketing tips (engage with your audience, use social media, blogs and social networks, but also discounts, giveaways and blog tours), calm down & carry on recommendations for those authors that discover sudden sales drops: the how to is explained in a very practical way. In Part 3 Gaughran gives room to 33 indie authors that share their success stories in their own words. All of them just recently joined the bandwagon of self-publishing e-books…..and make money out of it. Among others J Carson Black, Bob Mayer​, Victorine Lieske, Mark Edwards, and Steven Hawk. Appendices on short(er) stories & novellas, the international (non-US) market, practicalities and resources are extras given. Of course you have to learn writing, but everything to get your writing published yourself including a profitable business model can be found in this book.
  • Dirty Little Angels on Dec. 04, 2011
    star
    Chris Tusa‘s Dirty Little Angels werd me aangeboden voor een review. Gegeven het beloofde crimi-karakter legde ik de van de auteur gekregen EPUB versie voor aan Klazien. Haar gedachten na gedeeltelijke lezing. En neem van mij aan, ze leest wekelijks heel veel! Het verhaalt vertelt over een aantal tieners uit een lagere sociale klasse. De moeder van één van hen is klinisch depressief sinds een miskraam en de vader is alcoholist, sinds hij ontslagen is. Het verhaalt over hun gevecht tegen de wereld en tegen de andere tieners in hun sociale klasse en in hun klas. Het verhaal kon mij niet boeien. Erg langdradig over details geschreven: oftewel weinig actie en voortgang. Ik heb het boek dan ook niet uit gelezen. Na 5 hoofdstukken hield ik voor gezien: ik had mijn best gedaan. Trouwens: de e-book versie was erg lastig te lezen – geen mogelijkheden om makkelijk voor of achteruit te springen of naar een bepaalde hoofdstuk of bladzijde te gaan.
  • Gamers on Jan. 29, 2012
    (no rating)
    When Gabby DeCorte, top student and reality-hacker extraordinaire, learns the truth about LifeGame, she must choose between winning and what she believes in. Life is a game, unless you’re not the one winning is the morale behind this dystopia young adult fiction book Gamers. It took me quite a while to get into the storyline. SciFi is definitely not my preferred genre. You’re invited to an augmented reality world, which is controled by a government agency, LGIE. Comparisons to LIE, George Orwell‘s Big Brother from 1984 and the DDR era secret police Stasi are easily made, even in the novel itself. Lots of gaming, hacking and gadget slang is introduced. Reality starts breaking down when Gabby learns that her personal files, literally her identity has been hacked by dissidents calling themselves the Frags and that the government wants to check what they have altered. These Frags are fragments, not whole humans, rejected, but still powerfull. If you love the TRON movie (1982!), Massive Multiplayer Online (MMOs) games like Second Life and Playstation Home, Gamers is something for you. The addiction to gaming, earn points and stay ahead of your competition, while loosing all connection with reality is worked out nicely, but the neologism easily distracted me. OK, 2 points for brushing your teeth, 10 points for keeping your room tidy, 72 for the Bioeconomic Game Design pop quiz on the ride to school in your personal FunCar, and 30 for making every hurdle in gym class. The action keeps the story alive and makes it hard to put Gamers down. It’s #1 in the Gamers Trilogy. Part 2 is Frags, which released in December, 2011. Thomas K. Carpenter resides near St. Louis with his wife Rachel and their two children. He earned his degree in Metallurgical Engineering from the University of Missouri Rolla. After finishing up his M.B.A. in the summer of 2006, he returned to his roots of writing fiction.
  • Gamers on Jan. 29, 2012
    star star star
    When Gabby DeCorte, top student and reality-hacker extraordinaire, learns the truth about LifeGame, she must choose between winning and what she believes in. Life is a game, unless you’re not the one winning is the morale behind this dystopia young adult fiction book Gamers. It took me quite a while to get into the storyline. SciFi is definitely not my preferred genre. You’re invited to an augmented reality world, which is controled by a government agency, LGIE. Comparisons to LIE, George Orwell‘s Big Brother from 1984 and the DDR era secret police Stasi are easily made, even in the novel itself. Lots of gaming, hacking and gadget slang is introduced. Reality starts breaking down when Gabby learns that her personal files, literally her identity has been hacked by dissidents calling themselves the Frags and that the government wants to check what they have altered. These Frags are fragments, not whole humans, rejected, but still powerfull. If you love the TRON movie (1982!), Massive Multiplayer Online (MMOs) games like Second Life and Playstation Home, Gamers is something for you. The addiction to gaming, earn points and stay ahead of your competition, while loosing all connection with reality is worked out nicely, but the neologism easily distracted me. OK, 2 points for brushing your teeth, 10 points for keeping your room tidy, 72 for the Bioeconomic Game Design pop quiz on the ride to school in your personal FunCar, and 30 for making every hurdle in gym class. The action keeps the story alive and makes it hard to put Gamers down. It’s #1 in the Gamers Trilogy. Part 2 is Frags, which released in December, 2011. Thomas K. Carpenter resides near St. Louis with his wife Rachel and their two children. He earned his degree in Metallurgical Engineering from the University of Missouri Rolla. After finishing up his M.B.A. in the summer of 2006, he returned to his roots of writing fiction.
  • Bait For The Tiger on Feb. 13, 2012
    star star star
    Elizabeth Chater‘s science fiction works are being made available to a whole new generation of readers, thanks to her family. While teaching at San Diego State University in the 1960′s, Chater and her student, Greg Bear, had created the first Science Fiction Creative Writing class at the university level in California, which then paved the way for the world famous comic con being held in San Diego. In the novelette Bait For The Tiger strange things happen in Ore Valley. It’s a funny story about a possible invasion of aliens and secret settlements on planet Earth. In the Pentagon research is being done on mind-reading and alien attacks. In Ore Valley green lights are spotted. While on a top secret mission investigating these, FBI agent Phil Norton goes missing. Chester, the mind-reader and clairvoyant, Abbot, recording all evidence and Jones, the security officers, work together on this case. The Pentagon brings in the woman Phil married in secret, the exotic dancer Valentine Norton. She’s willing to do anything to help get Phil Norton back, even go under cover in a town now overrun by an alien race known as the Masters. This dancer uses a robot snake as an accessoire (therefore the cover picture and book title). How this comes to an end, I’ll not tell you It takes some time to get the storyline straight. Lots of facts need to be explained first. After reaching that point the book reads easily. Though the dancer’s infiltration into the aliens’ settlement sounds incredible, it’s not too distracting. The end is somewhat an anticlimax. Compared to the slow timelapse in the book’s beginning, it ends too fast. My conclusion: entertaining book, but not too exciting.
  • Child Molestation Stories: Voices of Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse (Molestation, Rape, and Incest) on March 11, 2012
    (no rating)
    Dr. Lynn Daugherty works with survivors of child molestation, rape, and incest. She shared their stories to let other victims know they are not alone in Why Me? Help for Victims of Child Sexual Abuse (Even if they are adults now). In the extract Voices of Survivors (10,000 words–about 40 pages if it were a paperback), some of the stories of abuse (in the hospital, walking home, in a rest room, at the beach, in my bed, by our neighbor, a family friend, my mother’s boyfriend, my brother, my stepmother, my daddy) are told. Male and female, young children, still young when they tell their story, or grown up and coming out with their memories as adult. The booklet includes answers to basic questions about child sexual abuse, guidance in selecting a professional counselor, and additional resources to help former victims and their families begin their journey to recovery, both online and offline. I got this book though Librarything‘s Member Giveaway. The truth on child molestation needs to be told, and the people who commit these crimes be stopped or caught. Unfortunately we all can read about child molestation in our newspapers, every single day.
  • The Elsingham Portrait on April 16, 2012
    (no rating)
    This is the second book I read from the author Elizabeth Chater. I didn’t like the first one, Bait for the Tiger that much. I was a bit reluctant to read this one, but The Elsingham Portrait surprised me positively. At first, the story didn’t get a hold of me. But after a while, I became interested and read the novel with growing appreciation. The story is about Kathryn Hendrix, who expects a proposal of marriage from her friend Don. The same day he stands her up for a luncheon date and Kathryn is very embarrassed, she shelters in a gallery from rain. There she sees the Elsingham Portrait. A portrait of Nadine Elsingham, not a very attractive lady, married to Lord Elsingham. Then it happens: Kathryn and Nadine trade places. Kathryn goes back to the year 1773. Needless to say that is somewhat of a culture schock for Kathryn as well as well as the people who surrounded Nadine. At one point Kathryn finds an ally in her caretaker Bennet and flees to the hometown of Elsingham Manor when there is talk of put her in Bedlam, a hospital for the mentally ill. Then her old caretaker, Donner tracks her down. Mrs Donner is an evil woman, who knows how to charm the well-intentioned people. Of course, Lord John Elsingham comes to his senses in time and rescues Kathryn just in time. And as there is nothing and no one for Kathryn in the 21st century, she decides to spend the rest of her life in the 18th century. As I said, it took me a while to like the book. But the story gets more interesting when the switch to the 18th century takes place. Then, an exciting story starts to develop with a few implausible facts/events. Then again, this often makes a story enjoyable to read.
  • Pit Stop on Sep. 03, 2012
    (no rating)
    It was funny to expect another novel or crime story and discover that Boris Guzo's Pit Stop was only a 3,700 words short story. A suspense story on a man on the run for the police, out of gas just beyond the state border. When he reaches a desolate gas station to get fuel and a drink, a young boy turns out to be a real gate-keeper. Unexpected twists which reminded me of Roald Dahl's short stories. Entertaining!
  • The Travel Auction on Oct. 16, 2012
    star star star star
    Only a few days before their trip of a lifetime Jonathan Cork is dumped by his girlfriend Kathy Thornly. Tickets booked and not possible to return. South-America is waiting. With help of his friend Jonathan turns to a very challenging alternative: an eBay advert for a female travel companion. Expenses paid by him, no sex(ual obligations), but one strict criterion: her name must be Kathy Thornly too. With time running out, it’s a kind of lottery who Jonathan will end up with. Kate Thornly the second, later nicknamed KT2, was brought to the scene by her best friend Maria. Pretending to be an attractive nurse, Jonathan picks just her. What’s left out of the online bid was her visual disability. What follows is a funny rollercoaster trip through South America: hikes, bus trips, flights, a variety of hotels, hostels and Lonely Planet highlights. The Travel Auction is one of the few books this year I read with a smile all the way. Entertaining, mixing adventure, relationship development, growing tension s and a jealous bunch of (ex-)friends and press, all wanting their share of The eBay Couple. II’ll share no more details here, but recommend you to enjoy this book.
  • No Accident on June 21, 2013
    (no rating)
    What if your boss secretly took out an insurance policy on your life—then sent you into harm’s way? 5 colleagues died under suspicious circumstances in a car accident Luke Hubbard, Liberty Industries's celebrated CEO, claims that the rich insurance policies the company as a beneficiary took out on their lives were just normal corporate practice. Alex Fogarty, insurance investigator, has a lot to think of, both professionally, as well as in his private life. He's run out of money, can't pay mortages on his five houses he bought before the real estate crash. Keeping his lights dimmed, and sneaking into his own house by the backyard is his way to avoid being seen by the bill collectors. Luke Hubbard is in a divorce case with his wife Sheila Hubbard. Sheila wants it all in order to settle a profitable divorce, and knows no boundaries. This whodunnit keeps you engages to the very end. Pieace by piece in short chapters the story unfolds, characters are brought in and detailed. No Accident is a search for truth and justice, where injustice, unethical decisions and murder seem to rule Los Angeles. Dan Webb's first book is worth another crime fiction title.
  • The Ballad of Cinderella Jones on Oct. 05, 2013
    star star star
    The Ballad of Cinderella Jones is a mixture of a love story, travelogue and confessional. According to the author, Victoria Hanan Iglesia a true-life story chronicling a scapegoat’s journey by Tallie from the Cleveland slums to the Caribbean shore and finally to Spain’s legendary Camino de Santiago. Chapters and episodes alternating will eventually bring all memory’s pieces together. The camino brings physical challenges, astonishing landscapes, meetings with men and women from all over the world. Walking also helps reflecting on the past, overcoming broken relationships and concentrating on real treasures. During this trek of 300 miles, Tallie found her inner strength, an unexpected faith and signs that brought her peace with God. Though only partly an actual account of the route through northern Spain itself, each chapter is hooked on a particular mile marker. Forget the churches, history lessons or deeper insights you may expect from a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela recount. This book’s extras lay in the interwoven passages from the Americas, illustrations and maps plus a set of recipes of meals offered and enjoyed during the camino.