Books are Art that we wear on our souls. Mine is extremly well decorated. I'm incredibly selective about what I choose to put there, because they become a part of you Forever.
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Smashwords book reviews by BattleCat
- Out From Edom: Book I of the Irredente Chronicles
on Oct. 08, 2010
I read classic sci-fi; Heinlein, Asimov, Bradbury, etc. I selected this book, along with a few others, because it sounded interesting. I don't know the author.
It was a great read. I enjoyed the complexity of it. Enough tech and history to keep it believable, not enough to interfere with the storyline. The characters were well written:the universe he created was well thought out and intriguing. I came back to grab the other short stories, and enjoyed those as well. Though, by the writing style, I'm betting they came first.
I'll reread this as the new ones come out. Not many distracting grammatical (or plot) errors, pretty incredible work for a first novel. I've dumped 9/10ths of the sci-fi works I've downloaded after grimacing through the first painful chapters. This one I'll keep.
- Shatter (The Children of Man, #1)
on Oct. 25, 2010
One of the most interesting fantasy novels I've read in a long time; and that says a lot. Everything about this book was first rate, from the concept and storyline- to the writing and editing. I can't believe that it was FREE. I don't mind paying for work of this quality. Great job, and I cannot wait for the next part. Thanks!
- Sisters Of Glass
on Nov. 10, 2010
Dystopian; yes. Hokey; no. Really well done actually. I expected for it to be horribly trite and vulgar; another Blade Runner fantasy. It wasn't. It had a few plot holes big enough to drive a train through (medical, legal, and technical)but you hardly notice them, if you're allowing yourself to enjoy the book. I ignored them. Enjoyed the escapism; good job. Didn't see any 'techno that needed skipping'.
- The Book of Deacon
on Jan. 18, 2011
Disclaimer: I am NOT a friend of the author, and I am definitely no fan of whoever edited this book. If not for the fact that I enjoyed the story, I would have deleted it for the many errors and the annoyance they caused. The epub version does not have proper spacing, or chapter titles, which leads to confusion when they switch character's perspective. At some point I had to make a conscious decision to stop counting them in my head, or delete the book. The book won; barely.
Other than that, it was a very enjoyable read that, given its setting, could have devolved into something preachy or gratuitously violent. The author chose instead to focus on his world, and its characters. I appreciate that in a fantasy novel. If you're looking for a sermon on the evils of war, this is not it.
Upon further thought, it's not a very realistic portrayal of a female character, either: in that she basically acts like a boy, and has the same lack of personal hygiene, that would likely kill anyone except an 8 yr. old boy. But I don't think that it really detracts from the storyline, in fact it likely helps it avoid a lot of difficult issues.
Ps. The magic is instead "Hocus Pocus" that is zapped from crystals. Not the most original, but not the lamest, either, as the author at least attempts to set up a system and a few rules, which is where it (surprisingly) Does get a bit preachy.
I'll likely buy the next one in this series
- A Woman Warrior Born
on Feb. 07, 2014
I wanted to like this book after reading of the author's upbringing, which was so similar to my own. Here is why I couldn't:
Interesting premise and world, but a depressing read. Characters are being killed, raped, tortured or shuffled off before we get to know (or care) for them. Basically, it lacks dialog, detail and motivation, which may have prevented the reader's antipathy to the characters' struggles.
The general atmosphere of gloom, doom, and misfortune is telegraphed So far in advance it's difficult to find a reason to keep reading. I get the impression that this book has been heavily edited for content, detail, and backstory. I don't know why; it may have made it more tolerable. I didn't make it past the first 100 pages, and that's pretty unusual. The story itself sounds interesting and worthy of telling. I simply wish someone with more skill could have told it. To sum up: interesting world, interesting characters, great tidbits: but poor storytelling skills make it impossible to slog through.
- Paranormal Investigations
on Feb. 08, 2014
What a wonderful, quirky book. It was a fairly quick read, with a lot of unsuspected twists- not kitschy & very well written. Loved the characters, and can't wait for the next one. Thank you!
- The Wicked Heroine
on Feb. 13, 2014
I thoroughly enjoyed both books. Rhona and Ruel needed more work, but all in all, I really enjoyed visiting your world. Please keep writing.
- Cursed (Cursed Magic Series, Book One)
on Feb. 13, 2014
I tried to read this, but couldn't get past the modern dialogue. It was several paragraphs before I realized she wasn't talking about Stockton, CA. I tried to keep reading, hoping to get thru the LOTR 'fanfic' feel. Sadly, I didn't make it. 3 stars for effort, though.
- Blessings Of A Curse - USA Promotional Edition - Book One of The Nexus Of Kellaran Trilogy
on Feb. 19, 2014
Turns out "the Curse" as mentioned in the title, is that a child is forced to be raped and or physically/sexually abused every day "forever" and the "hilarity" that obviously ensues.
This piece of pedophilic trash is a must-read for Creepy Adults looking to live out their child-rape fantasies, under the guise of literature. I would instead recommend therapy and a court order to stay 500 yards away from all human beings and animals. I am amazed that anyone would admit to reading it, much less "liking" it. Should be tagged with a Burn Notice.
on Feb. 27, 2014
I avoid a lot of sci-fi these days, because they stopped being fun or interesting, and started taking themselves too seriously. I'm so glad I decided to take a chance on this author (actually I lost a bar bet to one of the monkeys; never bet you can outdrink a monkey.)
I liked everything about this book, and just stopped by to purchase the next 3 in the series. This book was like lucking into the presidential suite at a 5 star hotel. There is nothing NOT to like, they have thought of everything, including things you didn't even know you needed. The wealth of detail and thoughtfulness, that isn't there to intimidate or confuse; but instead makes you feel like you belong there. Like you never need to leave. That's how sinking into this book felt. Great story, novel concepts, solid work that just made me want to keep reading. Elegant. Well done.
- Skyside: Book Five of the Channel Rider Series
on March 01, 2014
Another great installment in the Channel Riders series. My only complaint is that it was too short, and I am out of books.
I have thoroughly enjoyed this series; it's reminded me of how fun and interesting Sci-fi can be when it's well thought out and written by a skilled storyteller.
I was really tired of the masochistic trend in Sci-fi; the authors took themselves too seriously, and their books became depressing to read: the endless pontificating about the inevitable Dystopian fall, the needless plot twists, gratuitous sex, explicit violence, the ridiculous attempts to supplant Tolkien as the 'ultimate master of breadth and depth of work'...all served to drive fans, including me, away from the genre. Some of it may have been well written, but no one wanted to read them more than once. This series, however, reminds me of the best of old Sci-fi; Bradbury, Norton, Heinlein, Asimov, McCaffrey- the fun stuff. I am looking forward reading the rest of her work.
- Nomads of the Gods
on March 03, 2014
38 pages in, and it's basically a rehash of John Norman's Gor series- with less porn and amateurish drawings. I still have zero clue wtf the book is supposed to be about. I did note the author seems to have a misogynistic 'women are cattle' mentality. So. I'm bailing here.
- The Battle of Verril
on March 07, 2014
Just finished the series; I enjoyed most of it. The only complaint is the ending felt forced. It wrapped up way too fast.
- The Unsuspecting Mage: The Morcyth Saga Book One
on March 10, 2014
I thought the first book was interesting enough: however, I have zero intention of spending upwards of $60.00 to read the rest of it. It simply wasn't that good. The rest of the series are priced too high for self-published, half-edited pulp fiction. Get over yourself.
- Leopard's Kin
on March 18, 2014
Ms. Norman is obviously a very talented writer. Leopard's Kin, despite it's being the first book in a series going 'who knows where', was a good read. It had a great amount of detail, on several subjects, thoughtfully interwoven into the storyline; without beating you to death with them, as some novice writers are wont to do. In retrospect, I enjoyed her writing style as much, if not more, than the overall direction the book seemed to be going. If that makes any sense. I suppose it means that the book is such a pleasant read, that I'm less concerned with its destination, than the journey. Which is unusual.
- The Prophecy
on March 18, 2014
Wonderful storytelling, and well-written high adventure. I thoroughly enjoyed this series and look forward to the next book.
The books each add a layer of depth that cannot be achieved by other means. Loved the series. Worth the read.
- Deep Crossing
on March 21, 2014
I love sci-fi; but the first half of this book read like sitting in your den watching your SO and his best friend playing Flight Sim while trying to be clever- and succeeding at neither. Cringe factor 10+.
The female characters were weird and one dimensional; bust-size with a name and wardrobe; or guys in drag. Obviously needs more work on that aspect. Definitely more typos than I like to see in a finished work. Once the story actually kicked in, it was interesting. The whole thing needs an editor to direct and help polish it.
- The Mina Marley Chronicles: Micka and Me
on March 24, 2014
Seriously? "Easy to follow", really? This book, if it is indeed a book, is a hot mess. The first 10 pages were such a ridiculous jumble of incoherent words in a row, that I didn't know whether to read it, or try to decode them.
I cannot fathom the idea behind its structure; "Hey, I have a dubious idea for a book! But I don't want anyone to actually READ it....I know- let's introduce 10 characters in 4 pages, with zero context! Just put random names in sentences. That'll weed out everyone not in my Creative Writing class. "
- Unicorn Witch
on March 26, 2014
Interesting concept, unfortunately, the book was poorly written, poorly edited, and frankly; poorly thought out. The ability of the author to describe, on paper, what he is seeing in his head desperately needs more work. It read like an overly complicated children's tale 1+1+2, usually with little thought to actually describing HOW it was accomplished. Most problems or situations are ridiculously solved in one sentence or less; 'Then the unicorn fixed everything, and they all became best friends'. Boring and stupid.
Mid way though, I thought the absolute worst parts were the cringe-worthy attempts at 2 sex scenes, and several passages about "the birds and the bees" type garbage tossed in for good measure. O.M.G. REAL talks with real parents could not have been more awkward or contrived! The dialogue between partners was so poorly written one wonders if the author has ever had actual sex with a real person.
But that was before the four-way sex with the unicorns and their owners: Holy ^%$# Batman, that was simply disgusting. And if familiars share their 'owners' sex acts; I wouldn't want to be that woman with the female german shepherd familiar when her husband with the male horse familiar became overly amorous. That's gonna get painful and scary really FAST. As I mentioned; poorly thought out, poorly written out, poorly edited.
- There Goes the Neighborhood; Earthly Fantasy/Science Fiction Short Stories
on May 02, 2014
Other than the awful detective story near the beginning that almost had me hitting 'delete', this collection of short stories was fun to read. I'm glad I didn't dump it, though it was a last resort read.
I'm an 'old school' sci-fi fan, and hard to please; so I was pleasantly surprised. The writing style was well edited, and easy to read. The stories were well thought out -and well told. Very imaginative. The author obviously has a knack for short stories.