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I know, I am supposed to come on here and give everyone some deep insight into who I am and the nature of my existence, but for all that I have been writing for better than half my life and have been publishing the results of those efforts for several years, I have not in the past nor will I likely in the future do such a thing. To be perfectly honest, I am simply and without question just not that interesting, personally or professionally, perhaps that is an assessment that is overly humble or unfair, but it's a truth that is nevertheless fundamental. In a day and in the age when seemingly everyone is all too eager to document their every personal detail and display their every passing thought, I personally can find no compelling reason to do the same. Call it a quirk, call it a choice, or call it my own personal form of crazy, but there is me living through the dull-drums of existence and there are my books which at their core are the stories I've told myself over the years, and one category is considerably more interesting to me than the other.
When I first started writing, all those years ago, I didn't begin by putting words to a page for profit, or because I had delusions that one day I'd be celebrated for my efforts. I did it because it seemed like it might be a good way to pass the time, and in that moment, though I hardly understood it at that time, I found something when I wasn't looking for it. Since then, as time has passed, and I have honed my abilities, the underlying element of that moment of self-discovery hasn't truly changed, Entertainment. I don't write books because I can, I certainly don't write them for the sake of profit, though there is a glimmer of hope that one day there might be more of that. I write books because it's fun for me, it is my own strange kind of hobby and my own odd form of self-entertainment. And even if were to reach a point on some future day where the scales tip and I feel that this whole attempt to publish the results of my efforts is no longer viable, I will undoubtedly keep writing, if only for my own sake. I first published my books after a long and troubled decision making process, which ultimately weighed out marginally in the favor of the idea, that perhaps because I liked my books a great deal, that perhaps there were people in the world who would find an equal amount of joy in them. While at times there has been good reasons to doubt that belief there have been moments when that belief has proven true.
I am not like most writers, that is a truth best acknowledged right up front, I don't write my books thinking to imitate another author with their pulse pounding action, high drama, or unending tension. I write the stories I find interesting, create the worlds I think are cool, to follow the characters I like, through the events that unfold in front of both them and myself as we work our way towards whatever may come. I don't plot out my novels, I don't outline the story, I don't pre-program the dialogue, and often enough even I am surprised by the end of the current chapter as things change on a whim. My books are an organic process that grow and shift, free from over-sight and restrictions and ultimately often lead to place not even I can predict. Whether those who read my books like what comes of my strange hobby is more often than not is my very last concern, and while I might feel compelled to apologize for that being the case, it doesn't or won't change the facts in the end. Each book and each series I write are a result of the page's progress through the succession of each line and paragraph, loyal only to the facts on the page and require only the input of myself as a conduit in allowing those words to progress through their natural courses. So the end results of those efforts often enough take a path not even I expected, but I for one won't and will never change that fact.
My books are often strange and unexpected, I feel it is only right to acknowledge this, and there have been some in the past who have taken exception with that fact, angry that I did not meet their expectations. But I did not write my books for them, I wrote them for myself, selfish though that is, and I certainly did not publish my stories for them. Ultimately I publish my books for the small percentage of people who might read them and like them, and for the occasional bits of far flung joy I get from having people tell me how and why they enjoyed something I wrote. If you are one of those readers who starts a book with expectations and the belief that it is the writer's job to meet those expectations, please look elsewhere. But if you are one of those readers who reads simply for the joy of it, without expectations of what you might find, than I hope you will like what I have written.
on Oct. 09, 2012 :
Another great book from a very good author
(reviewed 44 days after purchase)
on Sep. 28, 2012 :
Well, I don't know if there's anything I can add that wasn't already covered in the other reviews.
Just got done reading this book last night and LOVED it! Also, I blame Shiva for making me want to have a kitten around again. I was enchanted by the description of the firecats and wish they were real, even if I could not have one as a companion of my own.
Wonderful story over all and Monorth remains the snarky, lovable, wonderful character we met in the first of the series. A few typos but not enough to detract from the story. I recommend these books to anyone who is fond of adventures on other worlds.
Can't wait to begin the next one!
(reviewed 4 months after purchase)
on Sep. 02, 2012 :
Simply put a Fantastic read
(reviewed 22 days after purchase)
on July 30, 2012 :
What a great follow-up to book one in this series. It's only getting better from there. It's hard to believe that I've not come across a single inconsistency (other than infrequent typo's) in the nearly 300,000 words between books one and two in this series. Well thought out and a wonderful read! I've read all four of the books in this series to date and am looking forward to book 5!
(reviewed 22 days after purchase)
on July 11, 2012 :
hiva Winters - Of Forgotten Days and Lost World - continues to weave the magic of the Salak'Patan series.
The story picks up after the life changing and somewhat life shattering first book with Monorth out in the field trying to continue the work of rebuilding the Salak'Patan. As his reward he is subjected to backstabbing and treachery until he has no choice but to retire from that, which he has been so driven to complete.
So begins the wandering through the halls and out to the very Rim of the Empire. His ever strange sometimes dysfunctional family growing around him and their support for him also growing. Out on the Rim his destiny brings him to Phoenix or Nix as he calls himself. And I was almost fooled into thinking this was going to be another man with ultra intelligent cat stories of which many abound.
In a way it is. But the rich detail of the story- often confuse as Purple Prose- yet in fact it is Purple Patch. And for those who don't know- there is a difference. Purple prose detracts and takes from the story. Purple Patch enhances it with its poetic beauty. The consistent depth of the characters that walk through this story - though sometimes it seems they can do no wrong - are all painted with their own quirks that give this story it excitement and adventure and romance.
I've already warned those who are distracted by the occasional misspellings and grammatical errors so this time I'm going to rate the book on what it did for me.
It gave me a pleasant exciting good read filled with a patchwork of poetic beautiful worlds, characters and ideas. Getting us ready for the next great book.
I won't recommend this for everyone- but, then some of you are going to miss some really good stuff.
Keep them coming Shiva.
(reviewed 8 days after purchase)
on March 14, 2012 :
Book 2 in the Salak'patan series is a much better novel in terms of writing quality. I suspect that the trend will continue in further books.
Monorth's tale continues in expected and, in some cases, very unexpected ways, but remains highly enjoyable and I am left wanting more. This story feels much looser than book 1, with the plot a little nebulous. I have a feeling it will set up book 3 quite well, but it definitely is not a stand-alone novel. Again, the structure of the book is non-standard and feels like a mixture of novellas and short stories, but turns out quite well.
Can't wait for book 3!
(reviewed 7 days after purchase)