Dingbat Publishing

Publisher info

Hi, I’m Gunnar Grey. I write books. I’m a historian, a forensics nut, a target shooter, and a retired adventurer and equestrian. I read avidly and post reviews or at least ratings for most of the books I read. In addition, I format ebooks for myself and a few clients, including indie writers and a no-longer-quite-so-small publishing company. If you need an ebook formatted or want to meet my references, check out my blog, Mysteries and Histories.

I live in Humble, Texas, just north of Houston, with four parakeets, the aforementioned husband (who’s even more entertaining than the birds), a fig tree, a vegetable garden, the lawn from the bad place, three armloads of potted plants, and a coffee maker that’s likely the most important item we own.

Where to find Dingbat Publishing online

Where to buy in print

Publisher of

Nine Ladies Dancing
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 376,200. Language: English. Published: October 14, 2016 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Regency, Fiction » Romance » Historical
Ten bestselling authors present ten Regency romances — some traditionally sweet, some clean, some mildly sensuous — in a boxed set you won’t want to miss!
Francine the Workin' Stock Cowgirl
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 920. Language: English. Published: August 17, 2016 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Children’s books » Readers / Beginner
Francine has always been told she has to be “itty bitty” to rope, ride, and chase cans. But Flitter the horse, her new best friend, tells her she’s “Workin’ Stock” like him. She’s made to do more than just look pretty and just like him, she can be fast. A fun and inspiring picture book about a girl and her horse with a positive lesson in body confidence!
The Inquisitive Guereza and the Community College Omelette Fundraiser Tragedy
Series: The Inquisitive Guereza Monkey. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 180. Language: English. Published: August 17, 2016 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » Satire, Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction
A placid afternoon walk turns into chaos and meaningless destruction as the aromatic appeal of omelettes proves too difficult to resist for the confused and inquisitive guereza monkey. But will his distracted orange-obsessed owner be able to act quickly enough to avoid disaster or is he just an inane tertiary character to the guereza’s unintentional (and inevitable) havoc?
Standing the Final Watch
Series: The Last Brigade. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 83,040. Language: English. Published: August 17, 2016 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Military
Against the day of national collapse, a heavily-armed military unit rests in cryogenic storage, to be awakened when needed, and special ops commander Lt Gen Nick Angriff is its commander. Fifty years in the future he wakes to find the USA destroyed and predatory warlords roaming the ruins. The only wall still shielding survivors from slavery and death are the men and women of The Last Brigade.
Dracula, Ergo, Terror!
Series: Public Television Heroes. Price: Free! Words: 15,870. Language: English. Published: August 17, 2016 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Monsters, Fiction » Children’s books » Paranormal
Deep in a shadowy castle dwells timeless evil and gruesome creepiness. Can Ergo save the universe again or will these dire threats prove too devastatingly terrible and leave our unfortunate hero… drained?
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 41,170. Language: English. Published: February 20, 2016 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Paranormal, Fiction » Children’s books » Fairy tales & fables
Twelve-year-old Casey's been swept away to a world of fairy tales, where all but one fairy godmother's been kidnapped. She’s been summoned as the Fable Ranger to rescue the missing wish-makers. But in fairy tales, damsels aren’t meant to swoop in and save the day. If Casey fails now, the Arabian Nights will vanish forever—leaving her trapped in a world unraveling one fairy tale at a time.
Escucha Means Listen
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 710. Language: English. Published: January 13, 2016 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Nonfiction » Children's Books » Readers / Beginner, Nonfiction » Children's Books » Foreign Language Study / Spanish
Take a journey through the world—just listening. Escucha Means Listen helps children discover sounds around them in English and Spanish.
Orson's Echoes
Series: The Journals of Orson's Folly. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 42,370. Language: English. Published: November 23, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Romance, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Adventure
When Natalie Carter wants to visit the old McGee homestead before she leaves from her Thanksgiving visit, she and Ricky McGee end up in a spontaneous treasure hunt that might cost them their lives. But is it a treasure hunt gone wrong? Or a love hunt gone right?
Well, That Could Have Gone Better…
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 430. Language: English. Published: October 26, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Graphic novels & comics » Science fiction, Fiction » Humor & comedy » Satire
Ted and Frank enjoy wasting idle time at work with an inane series of text and chat messages about extraterrestrials. But they get more than they bargained for when the mystery of “are we alone in the universe” is answered in an unexpected way.
Christmas at the Zoo
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 1,480. Language: English. Published: October 13, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Religious / Christian / Holidays & Celebrations, Fiction » Children’s books » Religious / Christian / Early Readers
Christmas is fast approaching and the young zoo animals are excited. All they can talk about are gifts and treats and the fun they’ll have. But Mother Giraffe, Aunt Elephant, and Grandmother Monkey have another, better lesson in mind. Read along with your child as they teach their young ones the true reason for the season!
The Key
Series: Secret Defenders. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 96,140. Language: English. Published: September 30, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Romance, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Paranormal
Everyone else has fun in high school, but not Maddie Clevenger. There’s something so vulnerable about her, shy, orphaned, and with beautiful jade eyes. Air Force brat Chase Donovan just knows taking care of her is his calling in life… but when bizarre, murderous flying monsters begin stalking her, he wonders if he is the key to solving her problem, and what it will cost him to protect her.
Whispers on the Hampstead Road
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 40,010. Language: English. Published: September 30, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Regency, Fiction » Romance » Clean & wholesome
When Deborah Kringle receives an unsigned love letter, she can’t wait to share the news with her best friend, George Anson. George might not be the most educated of her set, but he’s the perfect person to help her uncover the mystery of who wrote her delicious letter… if she can just figure out why he’s so reluctant to help. How can the Scoundrel of Mayfair change their friendship into romance?
Dad's Toenail
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 1,170. Language: English. Published: September 18, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction, Fiction » Children’s books » Readers / Beginner
Eww! Dad lost his toenail, but will not throw it away. He thinks it is just too useful. It’s up to the kids to help him decide what he could do with it. A carrot peeler? An ice scraper? Perhaps a really nasty dip scooper? What other uses are there, and how long will Mom put up with the smelly thing?
Public Television Heroes!
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 127,610. Language: English. Published: June 18, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction
What's more fun than a Rob Marsh book? How about three of them? They're smart and funny enough for adults, bad enough for kids, and great reading for the entire family. This set includes Unemployed Public Television Vampire Hunters, Mutated Mediocre Public Television Galactic Defenders Save the Universe!, and A Boy Named Ergo, all with illustrations by the very talented author!
One Simple Favor
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 36,190. Language: English. Published: May 14, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Suspense, Fiction » Romance » Contemporary
Tricia Pilgrim reluctantly agrees to pick up a sort-of cousin she’s never met at the bus station and drive him back to town. She might as well. Everything’s already gone wrong with her vacation weekend, there's an emergency at work, and things can’t get worse. Right? Wrong. One of them is a magnet for trouble… of the lousiest kind. The kind with bad guys and guns. Can he get her through it?
The Inquisitive Guereza Monkey and the Post-Soviet East Bloc Abandoned Nuclear Power Plant
Series: The Inquisitive Guereza Monkey. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 200. Language: English. Published: April 30, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction
The Guereza monkey is old, tired and has a dangerous propensity towards making horrendously bad decisions. If only he’ll listen to his friend, the Orange Obsessed Man, perhaps total nuclear annihilation can be averted…
Martin Hardware: Customer Service in the Real World
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,510. Language: English. Published: February 9, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Nonfiction » Business & Economics » Customer relations, Nonfiction » Business & Economics » Small business and entrepreneurship
When a “big box” hardware and home improvement store opened in northern Houston, only three and a half miles from Martin Hardware, local residents shook their heads and forecast the old store’s closure. After all, how could a 67-year-old hardware in an old converted barn compete in pricing and advertising against such a Goliath? But something funny happened on the way to the pity party…
The Echoes of Orson's Folly
Price: $4.49 USD. Words: 262,760. Language: English. Published: February 6, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Romance » Western
Three contemporary Western romance and romantic suspense novels in one package! **Lifeline Echoes,** **Elusive Echoes,** and **Abiding Echoes**
Amanda Moore or Less
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 187,640. Language: English. Published: February 6, 2015 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Two screwball romantic comedies in one package! **Scratching the Seven-Month Itch** and **Curing the Uncommon Man-Cold**
Bootful of Echoes
Series: The Echoes of Orson's Folly. Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 47,850. Language: English. Published: December 17, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Holiday » Christmas, Fiction » Romance » Contemporary
Justin McGee starts playing harmless pranks to keep his daughter-in-laws' spirits up…and finds himself contemplating a second chance at love when his childhood friend Charlotte Hains, abandoned by her own adult daughters, comes to spend the holidays with the McGees. Will all the secrets and surprises work out right? And will Justin ever bring himself to take advantage of the mistletoe?
A Boy Named Ergo
Series: Public Television Heroes. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 52,800. Language: English. Published: December 2, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction
Ergo is a human-puppet hybrid who wants to be a normal teenager. He’s survived vampires, zombies, aliens, clowns, and dangers in the furthest reaches of space. But can he survive the public school system? Can he endure an onslaught of bounty hunters, defective androids, galactic invasions, and martial arts crazed bullies? Can he win the heart of the most beautiful girl in school?
Love, Unmasked
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 21,890. Language: English. Published: November 27, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Regency, Fiction » Holiday » Christmas
When Fidelity Scott realizes everyone knows of her infatuation for the handsome Sylvestre Brightenburg, she's mortified. But before she leaves town, family friend John Greysteil convinces her to attend one last masked ball. Armed with a new, sensuous gown, a full-face mask, and complete anonymity, she's determined to make some scandalous memories. But Grey has other plans…
Abiding Echoes
Series: The Echoes of Orson's Folly. Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 113,260. Language: English. Published: November 1, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Western, Fiction » Romance » Contemporary
The patriarch of the McGee clan, Justin, lost his beloved Beth too many years ago. When he's struck down with a heart attack and wakes in the hospital, Beth is beside him, a dose of smiling, golden sunshine. Suddenly it doesn't matter whether she's real or a medical side-effect, because the memories she brings with her, how they met, how they fell in love, take him back in time and it's all real…
Star of Wonder
Series: NATO Rapid Response Team. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 30,880. Language: English. Published: November 1, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Christian » Fantasy, Fiction » Holiday » Christmas
The gorgeous woman leaned closer. “Do you believe in holiness?” NATO sapper Captain Kenneth Rutland needs something to believe in, and he’s easily sucked in when a beautiful stranger gives him a chance to escape his cynical, disappointing reality. But danger haunts Niviane’s world. Can Kennie fight through the savagery and disbelief, and let the Christmas star work its healing miracle?
Elusive Echoes
Series: The Echoes of Orson's Folly, Book 2. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 113,510. Language: English. Published: September 16, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Western, Fiction » Romance » Contemporary
Sean McGee showed Melanie Mitchell the sun-drenched field where he longed to build a home, the ring he wanted his wife to wear, the heart he yearned to give her. But Melanie's past is complicated and her heart is as full of pain as the Thoroughbred stallion Sean hopes to heal. Can he reach her heart with his, or are they destined to remain caught between friendship and something more?
Scratching the Seven-Month Itch
Series: Amanda Moore or Less, Book 1. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 95,580. Language: English. Published: September 2, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Amanda can’t believe Jason, her new lover, is already cheating — they’ve only been a couple for seven months. But her domineering older friend, Christine, has “proof” and insists Amanda should take it seriously. Does Jason have the seven-month itch? If so, which tramp is scratching it? And is it possible for their relationship to grow even closer despite Christine's worst efforts?
Love the Cat
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 290. Language: English. Published: August 23, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Children’s books » Readers / Beginner
Meet Sarah and her cat, Love. Love’s a good cat, but sometimes he’s a little bit crazy. When Sarah and Love rub up against the neighborhood’s Angry Lady, will the fur fly… or will they make an unlikely new friend?
Lifeline Echoes
Series: The Echoes of Orson's Folly, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 106,130. Language: English. Published: August 12, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Romance » Western
The day the earth tried to swallow LA, Alexandra “Sandy” Wheaton dropped her iced mocha in the parking lot of the emergency services dispatch office. Her day went downhill from there. Seven years later, hidden away in a small mountain town in Wyoming, Sandy is still haunted by the day that changed her life forever.
Fingerprints: Four Unusual Historical Cases
Series: Old Cases, Book 2. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 7,900. Language: English. Published: June 28, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Nonfiction » True Crime » Murder, Nonfiction » True Crime » General crimes
Four true crime fingerprint cases pulled from history. 1. The first crimes solved through fingerprints… Francesca Rojas (1892), Harry Jackson (1902), and the Mask Murders (1905). 2. The Question Mark Burglar… an unbelievable case from 1920. 3. When the victim’s fingerprints count the most… the Urschel kidnapping case from 1933. 4. Beyond bizarre… the strange case of cop-killer George Ross (1951).
Curing the Uncommon Man-Cold
Series: Amanda Moore or Less, Book 2. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 95,890. Language: English. Published: June 17, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
A stubborn boyfriend with the sniffles is the last thing Amanda needs in her apartment during THIS work crisis, but how can she get clueless Jason to leave without just ending their relationship? Fortunately, her divorced girlfriend develops the devious scare-cure and that apartment becomes the least hospitable place a man could imagine. But can this crazy scheme really work?
Mutated Mediocre Public Television Galactic Defenders Save the Universe!
Series: Public Television Heroes, Book 2. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 49,460. Language: English. Published: February 6, 2014 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction, Fiction » Humor & comedy » Parody
In the epic satire Bob Ross, Vampire Hunter, a motley collection of public TV heroes rode off into an apocalyptic sunset aboard the Boston Symphony Hall. Now join scientific Carl, neighborly Fred, Georgie the reader, Bob the painter, and the shrill red puppet Ergo as they battle evil robots and aliens, mutate into spacey things, and save the universe! Did you know you could do all that in Toronto?
Flying Finish
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 5,990. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2013 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Nonfiction » Sports & outdoor recreation » Equestrian, Fiction » Coming of age
Dixie’s an apprentice jockey, riding winners for the stable where her father works. When trainer Jake gives her the Fraternity ride on Bow Wave, a super two-year-old colt, she should be over the moon. But Shane, the jockey whose kisses make her tremble, is also riding in the Fraternity. He and his father need to win or they’ll sink further into debt. How can Dixie race against their desperation?
Deal with the Devil
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 160,210. Language: English. Published: October 18, 2013 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » War & military adventure, Fiction » Mystery & detective » Historical
August 1940 He wasn’t supposed to be on the plane. Now Major Faust is a prisoner of the English and he must escape before they break him. But every time he gets away, a woman is raped and murdered. The English need someone to hang. He’s the hot suspect. He’s got to catch the killer, even though he’s helping the enemy. It’s collaboration, almost treason. It’s making a Deal with the Devil.
The Chronicle Years
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 9,230. Language: English. Published: October 11, 2013 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » Contemporary Poetry, Nonfiction » Science and Nature » Animals
For a decade, between the late 1970s and the equally late 1980s, I was honored to publish several brief articles in the excellent equestrian magazine, The Chronicle of the Horse. Their superb editors also accepted, albeit with what reluctance they were too generous to admit, a number of my scribbled poems, more properly described as doggerel. This ebook is a compilation of those works.
Unemployed Public Television Vampire Hunters
Series: Public Television Heroes, Book 1. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 29,770. Language: English. Published: July 29, 2013 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction, Fiction » Humor & comedy » Parody
Myles Kieffer is a mild-mannered TV program director who is inadvertently pulled into a world of conspiracy, intrigue, and mystery as he and a scrappy band of public TV stars embark on a cross-country adventure in which they encounter zombies, aliens, vampires, clowns, and the penultimate evil that could very well mean the end of all humanity, as well as government-funded TV programming.
Ballistic Basics
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 32,310. Language: English. Published: April 30, 2013 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Nonfiction » Reference » Handbooks and Manuals, Nonfiction » Social Science » Criminology
There's a lot involved in firearms and ballistics. But with this handy primer in your e-reader, you'll be armed and ready to write before you can say "submachine gun." Oh, and did I mention it's illustrated?
Series: NATO Rapid Response Team. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 17,620. Language: English. Published: August 21, 2012 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » War & military adventure, Fiction » Adventure » Action
Captain Kelly Bonham, NATO electronics officer, adopts a war dog, but when Pojo arrives he’s not interested in rolling over for a tummy rub. This German Shepherd’s a working dog, a retired bomb sniffer. Now she’s shaking down a relationship with a dog whose behavior is puzzling and maybe even unhinged. Can she reach Pojo... or is there more to the situation than she’s seeing?
Unwanted Wives
Series: Old Cases, Book 1. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 9,000. Language: English. Published: April 11, 2012 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Nonfiction » True Crime » Murder, Nonfiction » History » Modern / 19th Century
Carlyle Harris and Robert Buchanan had several things in common. Both worked in the medical field, with Harris a medical student and Buchanan a practicing physician. Both lived in New York City in the early 1890s. And both had wives they didn't want. 5,000 words
Format Your eBook the Free and Easy Way
Price: Free! Words: 10,890. Language: English. Published: March 15, 2012 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Nonfiction » Reference » Writing skills, Nonfiction » Computers and Internet » Digital publishing
Now updated for Smashwords formatting and external links--the ebook formatting manual that’s produced a hundred polished winners on sales sites around the world!
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 130,090. Language: English. Published: July 31, 2011 by Dingbat Publishing. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
Captain Charles Ellandun lives in two worlds: NATO’s Rapid Response team, and civilized Boston with his beloved Aunt Edith. Then the war implants a ferocious, repeating memory he can't shake. Then someone murders Aunt Edith. And then someone tries to run him over with a Suburban. Like it or not, Charles must dig into her past, even if it rips his world to shrapnel. Even if it costs him his life.

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Dingbat Publishing's favorite authors on Smashwords

Smashwords book reviews by Dingbat Publishing

  • Horker's Law on Aug. 15, 2011

    There's a new breed of novel arising, the self-pubbed novel with a great story that would have benefitted from an equally good editor. This is one of the best examples of that category I've yet read. "Horker's Law" has a solid, well-developed plotline with enjoyable characters. It's clearly set up as the first of a series and a sample of the next book is included at the end. Mike Lee is definitely an author I'll be tracking, even if I did predict one of his twists at the end. At the same time, there's a lot here a good editor could have improved. Some scenes are overly developed and go on for too long. Although it's true you never know when something carefully worked into a previous scene will return to bite you, it's also true that these scenes would read better with some judicious cutting. While there are no misspellings or formatting errors, there are poor grammar choices and obvious outright mistakes. An example is consistently using "it's" when "its" would have been correct. Therefore, grammar purists might prefer to give this book a miss. But if you can allow the author some patience, and prevent the errors and slips from pulling you out of the story, "Horker's Law" is clever and fun. I give it five stars for the story, and four for the book as presented
  • The Night the Lights Went Out on Sep. 05, 2013

    Of all the books I've read this year, this is one of the most difficult to rate and classify. It's an intense read, densely written, heavy and realistic; but at the same time it's hopeful and light on its feet. The ending is left open, as if for a sequel, but because of the realism factor there's no other way it could possibly have ended. The climax is strong and satisfying, but the denouement and falling action drag on a bit. It's possible the story would be stronger with a couple thousand words chopped off the end; but it wouldn't be the same book and the effect on the reader would be neither as heavy nor as hopeful. The characterization is excellent. The author could use a professional copy editor or at least a good proofreader, and there are some sentences where I never did figure out a satisfactory meaning. But even when it threw me out of the story, there was never any question but that I'd dive back into it. If you like post-apocalyptic fiction without the tired tropes of nuclear holocaust or zombies, well, I've read worse. Much worse. And I guess that answers the how-many-stars question: this story will stay with me. Knock off one for the lack of proofreading and the questionability of those ending chapters, then let's say four stars and one contented if wondering reader.
  • The Irishman&Other Stories on Sep. 11, 2013

    This is another difficult book for me to rate. The author's writing skills are excellent, fluid and exact; his characters, situations, and themes are utterly real. And therein lies the problem. It seems I'm currently more in a mood for escape than for reality, and at this time these stories simply aren't reaching me. In no way is this the fault of the author; his book description is spot-on, no false claims involved. And allow me to emphasize that this is an entirely subjective assessment. There's no doubt other readers will not agree. With the author's polished skills, it's easy to imagine others awarding this anthology five stars and buying every book he's written. What makes my funk even worse is, I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest, unbiased review, and this is the best I can currently do. My thanks to the author for the opportunity to experience his work — and it's an experience, rather than a read, it's that real — and should this escapism funk ever break, I'll revisit these short stories and give them a better, fairer chance.
  • Beyond the Path on Sep. 11, 2013

    The hardest part about writing a good old-fashioned horrific ghost story, I imagine, would be ending it. We've all read books where the ghost was banished too easily, or the story became too cheesy for words, or in some way the climax became a let-down rather than a keep-me-up-reading-all-night. This book does not suffer from that complaint. If the main characters had been more likeable, and if the proofreading had been more thorough, this novella would have been a five-star story. Note that I received a free copy of this novella through the Library Thing Member Giveaway program in exchange for an honest review.
  • Falken's Woods on Sep. 23, 2013

    Nice YA romance, with mysterious paranormal/horror and coming of age elements extending and strengthening the story line. Strong, believable characters with real development, and if there are traces of instalove in the immediate attraction between H and h, the realistic romantic development makes up for that. One good touch was the common sense shown by the h while she's investigating the mystery; too often an amateur sleuth parks her brain and does stoopid things to move the plot along and set up scary scenes, but this author didn't resort to such measures. That's worth an extra star, right there. Note that this book does need a line editor and proofreader. There are problems with verb tenses, missing and added words, and the occasional clumsy sentence. For the most part, these errors don't detract from the book's enjoyment factor, but readers, if you're sensitive to such, consider yourself warned. Full disclosure: I received a free copy of this book through the Library Thing Member Giveaway program in exchange for an honest review. This assessment would be no different if I had bought the book or nabbed it as an Amazon freebie.
  • Arlo's Epiphany on Nov. 06, 2013

    This is a cute "secret lives of animals" short story. Engaging characters, entertaining storyline, and lots and lots (and lots) of narration. It includes one of the most hilarious chase scenes I've ever read, one of the best feline secret agents ever, and if the narration were trimmed down some this would easily garner four stars. As it stands, let's call it 3.5 stars. I received a free copy of this short story through the LibraryThing Member Giveaway program. Thanks for the fun read, Ms Oldaker.
  • A Day at the Office or The Bastard on Nov. 06, 2013

    A clever short story with a unique twist at the end. I did not see that one coming.
  • Hope on Nov. 17, 2013

    This is a full-length epic contemporary fantasy novel, with winged demons, winged knights (definitely not angels), telepathic horses, and weapons and armor that shape themselves to their owners. The plotline is solid -- I enjoyed the read -- but I kept wishing the world-building had been more solid, that there were more background details to keep me "grounded" in the author's universe. There just wasn't the overall flavor of immersion that truly satisfies the dedicated fantasy reader. However, my major issue with the book is a trick of the author's wordsmithing. She tends to omit certain important details until after the fact, and then spring the detail as a surprise for the reader. As an example, a character might be held at knifepoint, then fight free using a knife the reader knew nothing about. This is just off the top of my head, not a real example from the book, so no spoiler there. But several major plot twists were sprung using this "Gotcha!" technique, and I'm not a fan of it. I am a fan of the storytelling and the author's universe, even incomplete. There's a rough depth to the characters, a strength to the plotline, that will draw me back for future installments. Hope founds a fantasy world and is clearly intended as the basis for a series, with several questions remaining unanswered, invitingly so. Keep writing, Ms Rook. Please note that I received a free copy of this novel through the Library Thing Member Giveaway program. The price of the book never dictates the honesty of the review.
  • Ghosts of Florence Pass on Feb. 24, 2014

    e e cummings would have been thrilled at this short story. Sad but excellent ending, and well written throughout. Thanks for the read, Mr. Anderson.
  • The Littlest Spycat's First Christmas on June 16, 2014

    This is an adorable, feel-good Christmas story, and the author is quickly becoming one of my favorites. Her style is unique, both in writing organization and in plots, themes, and characters, and she does more with a talking animal story than any author since Dodie Smith. Although I must admit, that style does take some getting used to. It's well worth the time.
  • Barrenlands on Aug. 24, 2014

    Loved it. Good deep characters with some development, interesting storyline even if the villain was predictable, and fun to read. Also a reasonably professional presentation, with decent proofreading and good formatting and editing. Thanks very much for the read!
  • Dun Lady's Jess on Aug. 24, 2014

    Excellent premise and good story. A magicked horse from a sophisticated fantasy world winds up in modern America, transformed into a human. Love the characters, especially Jess and Carey, but also Jamie, and it's good to see dressage treated as a serious sport. 4.5 stars
  • Upon A Midnight Clear on Oct. 07, 2014

    Heartwarming and realistic sci fi short story, if that's not an oxymoron, and it's firing on all thrusters. Four and a half stars.
  • Outworlder on Nov. 15, 2014

    A well-written sci fi novella that takes a deeper look at an outworlder's unresolved issues. Not my usual shoot-'em-up military sci fi, definitely deeper, and fascinating in the undertones of the male-female relationship that can't be advanced with words. Professionally edited, formatted, and proofed; nothing to get in the way of reading absorption. Four strong stars.
  • The Mighty Peculiar Incident at Muddy Creek on Nov. 25, 2014

    Very clever, Mister Healy, very clever indeed. This is a sci fi-slash-Western short story, with good characterization, good clear writing, and a neat plot. I'd compare it to Cowboys and Aliens, but it's more realistic, doesn't have any aliens, and takes place on a train. A strong four stars.
  • Mitchell Parker's Anniversary Gift on July 06, 2016

    Sweet short story from a good writer.