eBook Ecstasy Newsletter
July 2001 Issue
Volume 1 No. 21
Last month, I sent the June issue to the list on three separate occasions.
Evidently Yahoogroups had a technical problem as it was never posted. For
those of you who missed the June issue, feel free to read it online.
Round One to RosettaBooks
The ruling is the latest in a series of verdicts indicating that courts
view the Internet as a new and different form of media, not easily governed
by the rules of more traditional media. Specifically, the judge ruled that
Random House could not block RosettaBooks from selling digital files containing
the contents of eight novels Random House publishes in print, including
works by the novelists Kurt Vonnegut, William Styron and Robert B. Parker.
The secret identity of Wordbeams' publisher is Daisy Dexter Dobbs!
This month we have an informative article from publisher, author, webmaster,
Sharon L. Reddy who owns and operates CrossroadsPub.com. Her personal website,
A Talespinner's Web, is a multi-media event. Highly recommended.
Charlotte Boyett-Compo is back with "How Not to Promote your Book."
Robert Marcom shares with us the mission of Eguild.
Featured E-Author: Charlotte Boyett-Compo
E-authors and E-publishers - If you would like to contribute
an article to E-Book Ecstasy, please contact me so we can
highlight you and your web sites. E-book reviewers, I am especially
interested in four star reviews of upcoming releases. Now paying $5.00
for articles and/or reviews.
Byte-Size Books from Aspiring Authors
Send your profile via email ASAP to Paul Hilts and Karl De Abrew at
Free to enter, open to everyone and has a prize fund of £3000!
The competition is open to all Nationalities and covers all genres. Stories must be no more than 5000 words long. Send entries as an e-mail attachment or in the body of an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org before the closing date. Include your name and e-mail address at the top of your story. You may enter more than one story. Closing date for the competition is December 1, 2001.
Nolan Childers is the author of the all time bestselling indie ebook "The Best Laid Plans," as
well as a non-fiction guide to e-publishing success based on her marketing
approaches for that book, e-Lectrify Your Sales: A Writer's Guide
to e-Publishing Success. Both books are available from DiskUs Publishing.
Abby the Troll Publications' Ebook publishing division will cease operations. The ebooks will be sold at deep discounts until August 1st, and at that time the epublishing web site will be taken down. Abby's webzine, The Wandering Troll, will continue with business as usual, and is still located at http://www.thetroll.net.
Publisher Susan Johnson sold MountainView Publishing to Lee Emory
as of July 1st. In addition to the MountainView acquisition, Ms. Emory
recently opened a new publishing site called Treble Heart Books.
A German publisher, Kripgans Books, is snapping up German rights
to quality ebooks from several established epublishers. Jon F. Baxley's
fantasy novel, The Scythian Stone is currently available and three
of Patricia Crossley's novels are undergoing translation. The Gunn of
Killearnan by Dorice Nelson and The Wandering Minstrel by Pat
Snellgrove are also being translated into German and will be sold in the
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(1) FEATURED E-AUTHOR
The Dream Team for Interactive eBooks
I've written several articles about my hopes and dreams for the future of eBooks, but to realize the dream, there needed to be a software capable of producing truly interactive eBooks so authors could provide readers with a unique, new, reading experience. Why? Because eBooks can offer readers more than just a different way to read text. To take full advantage of the digital medium, the software of my dreams had to do the following:
1. Produce an eBook that works on both Mac™ and Windows™ platforms.
2. Provide authors with the tools to write, define fonts, and format text inside the program, as well as the ability to import formatted .txt or .html files.
3. Provide for hyperlink jumps and triggers, pop-up windows, rollovers, sounds, movies, and image maps all of which allow authors to incorporate interactivity into their stories.
4. Provide an option for two page spreads and page flips. (Scrolling is fine for linear text, but it's not very good for interactive reading nor does it accommodate instruction manuals with large diagrams that need to be viewed alongside the descriptive text. And what about children's books? Scrolling destroys the element of surprise that young readers enjoy when a page turn reveals an illustration on a two page spread.)
5. Produce eBooks that are searchable, easily navigated, and capable of bookmarking so the reader can pick up where s/he left off.
6. Allow for customization of the appearance so backgrounds, buttons, and graphics can be used to enhance the setting or mood of the story.
7. Provide some kind of protection against copyright infringement. (It needs to at least provide the effectiveness of a locked door on a house which may not stop a determined burglar, but will set a boundary that honest folks will observe.)
8. Provide transition effects between page turns and jumps so the reader can observe the page change after clicking on a button or link.
I had searched the WWW for my dream software, but I'd given up hope by the time Bob Stein sent me a sample TK3 eBook in February 2000. The software was in beta then, but Bob knew from my articles that I would be interested in seeing what he and others were cooking up at Night Kitchen™. TK3 was obviously designed for authors to create the kind of interactive eBooks I'd been dreaming about, but my first question was, "Is this only for a Mac?" Bob said that publishing with either Mac™ or Windows™ TK3 authoring software would produce an eBook that was readable on either platform by using the appropriate TK3 Reader™ for that computer.
I immediately went to Night Kitchen's web site to sign on as a beta tester. To my delight, TK3's authoring tool was everything I'd been looking for and more. Not only did it meet all my dream criteria, but TK3 Reader™ added additional features allowing readers to take notes, hilite text, paste a sticky note, and dogear a page.
I found TK3 Author™ intuitive and reasonably easy to learn once I'd studied the tutorial and manual. Even better, the tutorial was written with TK3, so it was simple to search for specifics and take an interactive refresher course whenever I wanted to incorporate a particular function in my eBook. Writing within TK3, rather than just pouring in text from html files, is an inspiration that every author should experience. The synergy that occurs when writing with this software is thrilling. It was an absolute revelation to discover an array of opportunities for adding reader interactivity to the story while writing chapters within TK3 Author™.
Once I had the basics down, I decided to put TK3 Author™ through its paces which meant learning to use other software so I could employ the multimedia features. First of all, Quick Time™ movies are used in TK3 Author™. Macromedia Flash™ and .gif animations can be converted to Quick Time™ .mov format, but since I'd never done a Quick Time™ movie, I had to license and learn to use Quick Time Pro™ authoring software. My next step was to test several different sound programs for making voice and sound effect files which I converted to Quick Time™ format. Eventually, I had added sound effects, voice files, animated movies, image maps, rollovers, and dozens upon dozens of graphics, illustrations, and pop-ups to my TK3 eBook.
Together, the TK3 Author™ and TK3 Reader™ duo are the dream team for interactive electronic books. The only drawback is that a potential purchaser can't view a true example of a TK3 eBook online. TK3 eBooks can only be read from a CD or hard drive after installing the free TK3 Reader™ for your Mac™ or Windows™ computer. The upside to this is that rather than relying on an inconsistent browser, readers can see an eBook that looks exactly the same whether using the Mac™ or Windows™ TK3 Reader™.
I finally published my interactive, multimedia, mystery in December 2000. (Just in time to enter it in the first, annual Independent e-Book Awards.) I'm proud to say that "The Haunted Castle Mystery" finished second in the digital storytelling category. Another TK3 eBook, "Cavemen in the Hedges" by Stacey Richter finished first in the short story category. A downloadable sample of each is available on Night Kitchen's sample page. ("The Haunted Castle Mystery" sample version was written specifically to demonstrate TK3's array of interactive features.)
Third party trademarks, trade names, and product contained in this article
may be the trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.
Microsoft Windows is a registered trademark or trademark of Microsoft Corporation
in the U.S. and/or other countries. Apple Macintosh, Power Mac, and Quick
Time are trademarks of Apple Computer, Inc. registered in the U.S. and
other countries. TK3 Author and TK3 Reader are trademarks of Night Kitchen,
LLP. Macromedia and Flash are trademarks or registered trademarks of Macromedia,
Inc. in the United States and/or other countries.
** The opinions and comments contained herein are those of Linda Gruber of Novel Art. Linda is not affiliated with any of the companies mentioned in this article.
Reprinted by permission of the author. Other articles are also available
at the author's website.
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Novel Art: Images of Fantasy and Reality
"The Haunted Castle Mystery" A sample of this award winning, interactive,
multimedia, TK3 eBook is available FREE!
Copyright © 2001 Linda Gruber
How Not to Promote Your Book
A few months ago a friend suggested that I add two useful pieces of java script to my main webpage that would: (a. help people who had come to myself to break out of the frame from the forwarding website and (b. prevent people from stealing the unique Celtic bird graphic I had paid to have designed. On my friend's advice I incorporated the scripts into my webpage.
At first, the little box that would politely tell people the graphics belonged to WindLegends Ink seemed useful. But then a couple of websites who had gone over to lift graphics for links back to me were annoyed they could not do so. I became annoyed when—not remembering I'd put that nifty little piece of script on my page—also tried to lift a photo of myself for an interview. I sat back, stared at the page and thought: "This ain't worth the aggravation." I promptly erased that particular script.
As for the breaking out of frames script: That, too, seemed useful until a website I had asked to link back to me sent me an irate note asking why I would think they'd want to link back to a site that obviously had no respect for theirs. I scratched my head and wondered why any site would want to keep a surfer captive. To me, that seemed like blackmail: "You better stay at my site or else!" Being stuck in someone else's frame is an annoyance I don't need. Along with those insidious little popup ad boxes, frames are one of my pet web peeves.
But explaining to said website why I didn't want to have my readers stuck on their site only garnered me a rather testy reply and a promise that I would never be repped on their website even should hell freeze over. I scratched my nappy head again and wondered why said website was getting so damned defensive over something so trivial. After much scratching, shaking of the head and pondering, I finally decided said website was not really that helpful to begin with and let the matter drop.
The trouble was, the website wasn't as inclined as I was to let bygones be bygones. I received numerous scathing emails demanding I remove the offensive java script from my webpage. Considering said website wasn't going to link back to me even should frost form in Hades, I wondered why they were being so confrontational. I did not reply to any of the dozen demands they consequently made and finally stopped hearing from them. Either they gave up or the webpage bellied up. If they were that rude to other authors I am inclined to think the webpage folded.
Which leads us to the point of this article.
Hounding a reviewer, interviewer, or website you are wanting to link to can cause hard feelings and ultimately undermine what you are trying to do. Keeping an insulting discussion going long after the last volley has been lobbed is just plain childish. Take the case of the fledgling author who could not get his book reviewed by one of the major websites.
The young man, cocksure of his talent and egotistical enough to believe he'd written the end-all of horror novels, did not bother to query the website as to their submission policies. Assured of being well received, he sent his ARC to the website without permission and sat back to wait for the glowing reviews to come pouring in. Unfortunately, the webmistress was not pleased by his lack of manners and netiquette. Nevertheless, she graciously provided him with a reviewer who it turns out was not as enthused by the young man's writing as he assumed he/she would be. As a matter of fact, the reviewer was so appalled at his meandering prose and whiplash POV, she sent him a note to tell him she could not, in good conscience, even review his work.
As you can well imagine, the young man was not happy that his obvious talent was being brought into question. He was, to put it mildly, as irate as a bull charging a matador's red cape. I can well imagine him with teeth grinding, eyes snapping, fingers flying as he zapped off his invective email to the reviewer, ccing the webmistress. Calling into play the reviewer's and webmistress' lineage, he proceeded to insult them in a childish manner. He questioned their ability to know true talent when they saw it and labeled them Philistines for daring to suggest he was not as gifted a talespinner as he believed himself to be. Heaping on the abuse, he took them to task for every imagined slight he had been subjected to based on their refusal to validate his 'gift'.
To say this young man burned his bridges behind him would be an inadequate description of what transpired. Many reviewers heard of his rude email and never bothered to answer his queries when he wrote asking them if they wanted to review his work. Some ventured opinions on listservs that cockiness is not an endearing quality in a new writer. A few went on to comment they doubted he would ever be a success and one even went so far as to say she hoped he never would.
When you are in the process of trying to promote your book, being polite and courteous are vastly important. Saying please and thank you is not only professional, it is the way most of us were brought up: to show respect for those in a position to be of assistance to us in some way. You certainly wouldn't slap someone up side the head for doing you a favor, now would you?
Most reviewers are inundated with requests from authors and publishers alike. There are just so many hours in a day, a week, a month, and these hardworking individuals might also have a day job to which they owe their primary allegiance. Assuming that all you need to do is send a reviewer your novel and it will get reviewed within a week or two is a misconception most new writers have and it is a misconception that can cause problems. There is a huge backlog at most of the major review sites on the web. When a request comes in, it is added to the queue and sometimes that list is months behind in fulfilling the requests already there. It might take as long as six months for your ARC to reach the top of the list and be assigned. Depending on how good your work actually is and what the reviewer assigned to it thinks of it, you may not ever see a review from that website.
Just because you sent in your manuscript—whether asked for or not—don't assume you will automatically receive a review. Not only is it a matter of whether or not your book and writing has merit, the availability of having a reviewer there to actually read the book is a major factor. Reviewers leave for health and financial reasons and may take the review with them, provided it was ever done. They might have a disagreement with the review website over the way they do their reviews and trash the review they did of your book rather than turn it in. The review might have gotten lost in the shuffle of the dozens—most times hundreds—of review requests that filter into a website each month. The website, itself, might be closing down or phasing out of doing e-book reviews or simply unable to find a reviewer willing to review your work. There are a lot of considerations in the mix and it would behoove you to practice patience when waiting for your review.
When you do receive a review of your book, please be sure to let the website and the reviewer know you appreciate them taking time to review your work. Reviews are a promotional tool and it is rare when an author can't find a blurb to use for that purpose even in a non-glowing review. Should the review not be to your liking, don't let personalities become involved in the mix. Politely thank the reviewer for his/her opinion and move on. Reviews are subjective and the old adage of one man's trash is another man's treasure is an apt description of the reviewing process. If a reviewer pans your work, you don't have to send them anything else. Neither do you have to resort to childish displays of temper and rudeness if they trash your work. There are so-called reviewers on the web who thrive on confrontation, insult, and rudeness. Why lower yourself to a biased reviewer's level? This is a profession so treat it as one. If they wish to act in a manner unbecoming an adult and a professional, why pander to their need by feeding their addiction?
Remember the young man and his brash opinion of how great he believed himself to be? You don't want reviewers, interviewers or websites to think of you, speak of you, and treat you as he was treated. Be courteous and be sure that if all else fails, silence is sometimes the best policy.
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Visit one of her publishing houses at Twilight Times Books (http://www.twilighttimesbooks.com ), Hard Shell Word Factory (http://www.hardshell.com ) and Amber Quill Press (http://amberquill.com) to learn more about her available books and what's coming up next.
She has a new sword & sorcery romance book (The Windhealer: Book Four of the WindLegends Saga series) coming out in July and DarkWind, the long-awaited sequel to BloodWind, will be out in November. Drop by her website at http://www.windlegends.com to get know a little about her. Please be sure to sign the guest book so she'll know you came by for a visit.
Check out Charlee's interview at Sharp Writers
Copyright © 2001 Charlotte Boyett-Compo
Defining Book Ownership
Sharon L. Reddy, Publisher CrossroadsPub.com
Thanks to a discussion [on the ebook-community email list], I've decided how to define 'book ownership' for our customers. It has to be an individual decision by each publishing company, based on what is sold and to whom. We don't 'license' books, we sell them. We'll make what that means a bit clearer to our customers.
Our books aren't for 'everybody,' though we do have something for each person who likes to read. We don't see ourselves as truly in competition with 'Parnassus,' as Piers Anthony calls it. We publish books which have elements which aren't in mass market books. They may see our 'brain candy' store as competition, but we don't see their package candy aisle as such. We publish books that have flavors not available on the mass market. They can't sell enough of flavors not popular with almost all 'the general public' to be profitable. The entire system is based on mass-market volume sales. They need a fast turnover because of vast payrolls and stockholder expectations to meet. We don't.
Our mission is to give authors, editors and artists opportunity to bring
their joint work to markets which are currently underserved by the mass
market publishing industry, to provide reasonable recompense for their
professional labor and give the reading audience books that have a different
flavor at a very reasonable price, to give good value for their entertainment
'dollar.' We think of it as an investment of our trained talents
in a NICE retirement income, for us all. That's what Ken Sheets
I'm an author. It was an act of desperation. Since a large
number of women asked me to write for them because I could do it, I knew
I wasn't the only one who was desperate. The women who asked me were
as starved for stories with 'smart' characters, with more than seventh-grade
vocabularies, as I was. I write epic heroic 'science fantasy' for
smart women. Since the only form of distribution that would make
writing for an international niche audience sensible was electronic, I
started carrying books on floppy disks to cons. And I wrote for the
audience I knew wasn't being served for seven years, preparing my product
for that specific audience, when there would be epublishers establishing
themselves as good business people, and
The definitions of genres are fetters on the creativity of authors.
They don't provide 'structure.' Good writing technique does that.
They're labels over the aisles that many people work to keep stocked.
My writing style is actually built for female physiology, and to be read
"as fast as you can think." It contains an element that CAN'T be
in a book for seventh-grade reading level, oratory. My characters
are passionate speakers, and very well-spoken. My writing style is
The target-audience/niche-market concept, and the intent to provide a method for skilled people to develop stable professional careers of decades duration, reduces the risk of loss by copying. Each time a person sends a book to someone else they're sure will enjoy it, it's a potential sale for all the rest of the author's works. But that only pays off for authors who keep writing and keep publishing, which is why we have a position called Author Development Specialist, and all our editors know a piece of their job is to help authors develop personal voice and style.
There can be no growth of art if all artists must follow a pattern. Each piece is decorated differently, and the artistry can be seen in each of the many of each pattern, but it's still mass-produced crafts. If those patterns weren't desirable, they wouldn't be mass-produced. But the artists are confined to the popular patterns and the art of storytelling in text near moribund because of it.
[Ed. note: The books available from CrossroadsPub.com books are unencrypted, inexpensive, well-written, well-edited, have great cover art and win lots of awards.]
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Ms. Reddy spent six years developing her storytelling skills and mastering the craft of writing. She had the luxury of being able to devote the amount of time to it that's required to get a master's degree in any performing art. She says, "I believe I've put the time my wonderful husband gave me to do it to good use."
Visit her multi-media website.
Copyright © 2001 Sharon L. Reddy
Distributing Self-Published Books
Richard Hoy, publisher and co-owner of Booklocker.com
... I'd like to discuss the trials and tribulations of distributing self-published books.
There is an incorrect perception that every book has to be distributed through traditional channels in order to be successful. What I mean by that is authors think their books have to be distributed by Ingram or Baker & Taylor and in physical bookstores in order for them to sell a lot of copies of it.
So armed with this misconception, authors forge ahead with self-publishing only to run into a wall when it comes to distribution.
For ebooks, the market is still so small you have to basically create your own storefront on the Web or go with someone like Booklocker.com who has invested the resources to create a storefront where customers can buy the ebook online. It will be many years before you can walk into every bookstore and buy an ebook. (Some authors have successfully convinced their local bookstores to sell their ebooks on disks.)
For Print-On-Demand books, the options are a little better. But in order to move physical books through traditional distribution you have to grease so many middlemen's palms that your profit margin quickly evaporates. And in some cases, it is just plain impossible because there isn't enough profit margin to go around.
For example, selling POD books through Amazon.com. Amazon.com's Advantage program takes 55% of the list price of the book as their commission. For most books, you have to raise the list price just to cover Amazon.com's cut. And by doing that, you usually price the book out of the market. Furthermore, all the orders from Amazon have to be processed by someone. And that someone has to float the cash to print and ship the books to Amazon because they won't actually pay you for the books for about 60 days and the POD supplier will want its money at the time you place the order. Same issue with Ingram's regular distribution program or with Baker & Taylor, only with them you have the problem of returns on top of it.
So if you are going to realize all the benefits of epublishing, you have to be prepared to circumvent traditional distribution channels. How do you do that? Here are some ideas:
GET AN ISBN
SELL DIRECT TO THE CONSUMER VIA THE INTERNET
WORK WITH A POD SERVICES COMPANY THAT OFFERS DISTRIBUTION THROUGH INGRAM
SELL TO BOOKSTORES DIRECTLY, NOT ON CONSIGNMENT
APPROACH THE BOOKSTORES YOURSELF
Remember, it isn't how many books you sell. It is how much profit you pocket on each sale.
Email your comments and column ideas to
**This articled be may be reprinted/redistributed freely as long as
the entire article and byline are included.**
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Copyright © 2001 Richard Hoy
Eguild Adopts New Mission
Robert Marcom, Chairman
As of January of this year, 2001, Eguild has voted to adopt the mission of compiling and propagating standards of practice between authors, cover artists, editors and publishers producing works for electronic publication. The Standing Committee for Standards and Fair Practices was designated to oversee Eguild's participation in the community of electronic publishing professionals.
Eguild, a business association for those engaged in any aspect of electronic publishing, was founded on January 1, 2000 at the stroke of 12:01 at the International Dateline. The intention was, and remains, to provide advocacy for fairness for authors and artists who work at the creative cutting edge of literature: electronic publication.
The membership currently supports two other activities, in addition to Standards and Fair Practices. Promotional activities for members, and participation in the E-book Manual for Readers continue to be at the heart of Eguild's efforts.
The Ebook Manual Project is hosted by the Mystic Ink community (http://Mystic-Ink.com). We are well-represented on the project. Our members currently make up a large percentage of of those involved. The goal is the production of a comprehensive, yet easy to understand, guide for anyone interested in buying, downloading and reading electronic literature.
Promotional activities have been on hiatus, due to the amount of work necessary for accomplishing the other two activities, but we should be ready to begin a programmed effort on behalf of our membership by the end of the year.
Eguild is currently awaiting approval of tax exempt status from the U. S. Internal Revenue Service. Such status will allow us to offer seminars, demonstration projects and provide business services for members. We will be able to conduct contests and present awards without incurring tax liabilities.
Eguild has undertaken great tasks in service to the e-publishing community, and we realize both the enormity and the need for such service. We invite professionals of all stripe to join with us in our efforts to improve the professional environment.
For membership information, please see our web page:
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Author of "A Voyage Through The Cosmos" (ISBN 1-930430-03-5)
Visit Robert's web site http://home.houston.rr.com/netauthor/
Copyright © 2001 Robert Marcom.
Title: The Windhealer: Book Four of the WindLegends Saga
This story is another stunning installment of the Windlegends Saga. As each book in the series is released the tension builds. The intensity of Charlotte Boyett-Compo's writing is beyond compare. I have a very hard time finding words strong enough to describe just how superlative her writing is. I've never seen an author describe human evil with such depth and with such reality.
We begin years after Conar has been striped of his royal legacy, having his death faked then sent to the Labyrinth. During these after years Conar has been stripped of his freedom, his wife, his children and his own name. While in the Labyrinth Conar is not allowed to be spoken to, looked at or even acknowledged in anyway. He is not even considered alive, he is a nameless ghost to be ignored.
Should Conar dare to try to have contact with anyone that person will be beaten severely, so for the love of his men whom have also been sent to the Labyrinth he dares not speak to anyone. Should any of the men that know who Conar really is dare to speak to him then Conar will be beaten as he has been many times before. The guards need no reason to beat Conar, any reason at all will do, a funny look, a sneeze anything. On various occasions Conar has been beaten to such severity that he has almost died. As a matter of fact he has been treated so badly that he is on the verge of losing his sanity if not his life. Some guards have done much worse then beating him, they have abused Conar in ways no man or woman should be.
Though Conar still has men that are loyal, even their hands are tied for the time being. Anything they do to help Conar will end up with him being hurt worse. Then a person shows up that may be a help or Conar's worse nightmare. Brelan Saur, Conar's brother has been sent to the Labyrinth as a guard. Is this, the beginning of the end of Conar's mistreatment or has the worse just begun? Brelan Saur has never held very high esteem for his brother so will he be a help or a hindrance? Or could he be there some unseen reason, is there more to Brelan's appearance then there seems? Could someone have possibly sent him there for a purpose, if so what purpose? How does Brelan react when he realizes the true identity of the nameless prisoner?
From the time of Brelan's arrival changes are at hand, but again are they helps or hindrances? What will happen to Conar? Will he live will he die? Will he survive to escape the Labyrinth? If he does will he survive intact, or will he leave a part of himself back at the Labyrinth? Think about this for a moment. If Conar is to survive, and he and his men are to escape and reach safety who or what will really be leaving? And what will have been left behind? Should Conar have gotten to safety what will happen when he finds out the life Liza is now living? Should Conar escape and seek training in order to fulfill his destiny who or what will he make a bargain with in order to kill the pain he feels over Liza's seeming betrayal of his memory?
All in all it is safe to say the Conar at the end is not the Conar of old. He has been changed for all time. Will those changes be for the worse and who will suffer? Will good win out or will Conars' pain have sunk him in the depths of an evil even he cannot escape from?
The pain, suffering, betrayals, degradations and horrors Conar suffered are something that even the Prince of the Wind could not come out of unscathed. By the end the Raven is all that's left of the Conar of old.
I personally loved this book. I was pulled in from the beginning to end. I found tears coming to my eyes in some of the scenes they were so vivid. I can hardly wait to read the next installment to the series.
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Sime~Gen Inc. Reviews
The Hour Before Dawn is the exciting sequel to Deadly Obsession.
Tevan Zabar is working a series of gruesome murders in Chicago. The victims are female. Each one found horribly mutilated. Their necks slashed to the spine. The killer just about decapitating them and leaving bite marks around the open wounds. It's another vampyre serial killer and it looks like it’s the same killer who terrorized and murdered girls in Fairview Park a few years before.
Tevan's personal life is in shambles. Separated from his wife and daughter, the last thing he needs is a big case taking him away from home more than his job already does. But until this killer is caught he has no choice. His job as a cop has always come first.
The only way to find the killer is to go undercover. Tevan has to leave his family and live the life as a vampyre to get close to the very people who may lead him to the killer.
Along the way he insinuates himself into the vampyres’ lifestyle, hoping they’ll allow him into their coven. He also finds himself being tested by a vampyre named Raven. If Tevan will feed off Raven’s life source then he can truly get accepted into their group and that will take him one step closer to finding the killer. This is definitely not something he wants to participate in. The very idea of suckling someone and drinking their blood sickens Tevan. On the other hand, if he doesn’t, they will never accept him as one of their own and he’ll have no chance at getting close to the killer.
Another angle Tevan uses to his advantage is getting closer to a girl named Krys. She’s not a vampyre, but she shares a house with Raven and Azzo who are. The more time he spends with Krys, using her and not being truthful with her, the more guilty he starts to feel. Krys brings out feelings in him that he thought he’d never feel for another woman. Feelings that will be destroyed when she finds out he’s a cop, who’s been using her.
You’ll meet up with favorite characters from Deadly Obsession when you read The Hour Before Dawn. Cole Kincaid and his wife, Laurie, make a reappearance when they come to Chicago to help Tevan find the killer. The band, Dragonslayer, makes it’s return also. With the incredibly sexy Damien Vincent, its lead singer, still driving the women crazy with desire.
Ms. Rasey does an excellent job of continuing the story of Deadly Obsession. You'll be very surprised at how well the first book flows right into the second one. The characters are just as intriguing, if not more so, in The Hour Before Dawn. She brings you closer to these lonely souls who live their lives as vampyres by night. You can see all her extensive research in investigating their lifestyles when she takes you into their secret covens. She gives the reader a peek at the rituals that vampyres participate in that are spellbinding and very intriguing.
I was captivated while reading the crime scenes, and the dialogue is entertaining and informative. The action is fast paced and you’ll feel like you still can’t read fast enough! The clever writing will keep you guessing to the very end as to where the killer is and gasping in shock when you realize that even a prevalent character may end up the next murder victim. As with Stephen King’s characters, no one is safe in Ms. Rasey’s books!
Ms. Rasey knows how to build a scene around the most electric sexual tension of anyone I’ve ever read. Very hot! I found the needs of the vampyres, their taste for blood, both compelling and sickening at the same time. So much so that I couldn't stop reading about them and feeling a certain understanding of their compulsions.
Patricia Rasey has outdone herself with The Hour Before Dawn! This book is extremely interesting and insightful. I thought Ms.Rasey was a fantastic author when I read Deadly Obsession. I had to change my opinion after reading The Hour Before Dawn. She’s not only a fantastic author, she’s an exceptionally gifted writer, with a skill and talent that distinguishes her from other’s in her profession!
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The Murder List
"We see Sandra growing from a young college student to a real woman
in this books as Judy Bagshaw unfolds a lively spoof with a very touchingly
beautiful love story. What an uplifting and talented story this is that
brings a smile and a glow to ones heart. This is a must read for anyone
suffering from self-doubts and no self confidence, proving Big is Beautiful.
An endearing story of a girl who grows up and into a positive young woman.
Great fun for teenagers and anyone who loves a good love story! Great job!!
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This book starts out with a bang and doesn't stop until the very last page. If you like action packed, heart stopping murder mysteries then this one is not to be missed. Brigit Bauer has to die. She's stuck her nose in too many things and has messed up too many deals. The problem is she must have a guardian angel watching out for her.
Tony Pendrake is seriously attracted to Brigit but knows she's a widow
so he wants to make sure she's finished grieving for her husband before
he makes his move. Then when he finds out that there have been attempts
on her life, he takes over and decides to force the issue. The thing
is Brigit is very stubborn, opinionated and refuses to kowtow to the fact
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Kathy's Faves and Raves
Imagine an incredibly heartfelt romance set in 1819 England--with passionate characters who must get to know each other under ambiguous circumstances, a detailed setting that transports you back in time, and language that sounds authentic as you read it. That is what the reader will experience when they indulge in a copy of Heart of the Diamond.
The heroine, twenty-two-year-old Lady Nicole "Nicki" Langley, finds herself in an unsettling predicament when she responds to a note from her childhood friend, Teddy Bartholomew. Climbing from her window into the dark of night, she runs to greet Teddy on his return from America. But when she arrives at Rosewood Manor, she discovers Teddy gambled away his home to the dark, mysterious Earl of Diamond, Blake Dylan.
Blake Dylan is overjoyed at the chance to exact his revenge on the Duke of Billington, Nicki's father. Nicki manages to compromise both of their reputations and Blake arranges to marry her. Nicki's father must explain to the Duke of Milton, her fiancée, why the engagement is off and risk public embarrassment.
With a fierce determination to not to marry unless for love, Nicki faces the greatest challenge of her life! When her long-time friend Teddy returns to England, Nicki must decide which man truly deserves her heart.
Heart of the Diamond is eloquent, truly romantic and a joy to read. Nicki is one of the strongest heroines I have had the pleasure of reading in a long time. Blake is dark, mystifying and extremely sexy. Together they make a fiery pair that will be hard to forget! Expect plenty of sizzle, entrancing dialogue that invigorates the senses, and some dramatic twists that embrace you until the final page.
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E-Books Ecstasy Newsletter, Volume 1 No. 21