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Author: sarinalangerwriter

NaNoWriMo Progress Report Week 3

Happy Friday, friends!

How are your NaNo babies coming along? Aren’t they just growing up so fast? :O

My first two weeks were a little slow, but I’ve caught up this week! *pours a shaky cup of tea* This week, I wrote 11,048 words.

That brings the total to:

25,042

#smashedit

Honestly, though, I’m a little worried that we’re over halfway through NaNo now and I’m only just at the halfway point word count wise. I’m starting to accept that I might not make it this year. I’m trying to build my business alongside writing all the words, so most days it’s a delicate balance struggle. What’s more important? Writing half of a first draft or finding clients so I don’t stay broke? You get why I’m torn.

So, if I don’t write another 25K in the next two weeks, I won’t be too hard on myself.

I know this word count is a big priority for many of us this month, but don’t forget to look after yourselves, too <3

    “It’s time, Sparrows. You all know what we’re walking into, and you all know why we’re doing it. The queen needs our help, and we’re her private army. It’s our duty to keep her safe, no matter the odds. Rachael’s safety is our priority.” He swallowed hard. He wasn’t prepared to lose any more of his family. “But that doesn’t mean you can be reckless. You can’t help Rachael if you’re dead, so I expect you to be smart and stay as safe as the situation allows. If you have to fight, give it everything you’ve got but don’t get killed while you’re at it. These demons aren’t like you and me, and they don’t die like you and me. Hold out your weapons.”

   While all of them had their weapons enchanted, it couldn’t hurt to strengthen the magic that ran through them. If the enchantment wore off—if that was even possible—he didn’t want it to happen while they were fighting for their lives.
   Kaida stepped forward, and made each weapon glow in turn until hungry flames burst from each of them. Their fires burnt hot for a second, then slowly died down to allow the Sparrows to sheathe their weapons.
   “You are my family. Rachael may be our queen, but she has made herself a part of that family, too. Protect her because she is your ruler. Fight beside her because she is your sister. The enemy is fast, but we’ll be faster. The demons are linked through dark mist magic, but we are linked by a connection they will never understand. When we get to Kaethe we will show them what happens when they take our queen from us. When we get to Kaethe, we will make them regret taking our sister. For Rachael!”


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All content belongs to the author, Sarina Langer.

You can find all original images on my Pinterest Board.

For all previous updates on my books’ progress, click me!

For Cookie Break’s front page, take a look here.

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Review: Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

“Mary Shelley began writing Frankenstein when she was only eighteen. At once a Gothic thriller, a passionate romance, and a cautionary tale about the dangers of science, Frankenstein tells the story of committed science student Victor Frankenstein. Obsessed with discovering the cause of generation and life and bestowing animation upon lifeless matter, Frankenstein assembles a human being from stolen body parts but; upon bringing it to life, he recoils in horror at the creature’s hideousness. Tormented by isolation and loneliness, the once-innocent creature turns to evil and unleashes a campaign of murderous revenge against his creator, Frankenstein.

Frankenstein, an instant bestseller and an important ancestor of both the horror and science fiction genres, not only tells a terrifying story, but also raises profound, disturbing questions about the very nature of life and the place of humankind within the cosmos: What does it mean to be human? What responsibilities do we have to each other? How far can we go in tampering with Nature? In our age, filled with news of organ donation genetic engineering, and bio-terrorism, these questions are more relevant than ever.”

What I thought:

Fair warning, friends – there’s a big spoiler lower down. If you’ve read this book ignore my warning, but if you’ve yet to read it you may want to skip it. I’ve marked it accordingly so you can’t miss it 🙂

I find reviewing classics difficult. Raise your hands if you don’t know anything about Frankenstein? No one? My point exactly! I always worry a classic will be hard to read, but this was easy to get into and I enjoyed it–right up until the end which was anti-climactic and left me feeling let down. The spoiler explains why, but I do recommend you skip it if you haven’t read the book yet. Unless you don’t mind spoilers, of course 🙂

Frankenstein is about a young man obsessed with the need to create something he believed would be an end to all sickness, but who was so repulsed with the result that he rejected it. Things escalated from there, and his creation sought to destroy his life and everyone he loved. It’s a reminder that just because we can doesn’t mean we should.

And that’s the plot in a nutshell, really! 🙂

I felt sorry for the monster. Rejected by the man who created him, all he wants is to be accepted and loved rather than feared and rejected by the rest of society. That doesn’t sound unreasonable to me. It’s what everyone wants, after all, but not only does Frankenstein reject the monster, he also gives him hope just to shatter it later. Anyone would be angry after that, right?

Now, look away if you don’t want the ending spoiled:

SPOILER The whole plot builds toward this epic fight between creator and creation. Frankenstein himself wonders several times how he can possibly win since his creation is so much stronger and faster, he only knows that he has to defeat his creation. So, when Frankenstein dies of sickness and exhaustion at the end of the book without even facing his creation one last time, I felt somewhat let down. The monster itself sails out to sea never to be seen again. Nothing gets resolved. If you’re a writer and have wondered why anything you foreshadow needs to be realised, here’s an excellent example. SPOILER END

So, while I enjoyed the book, I was also disappointed with the end. It’s incredible that Shelley wrote it when she was a teenager, but I still feel like I was robbed of this one thing she promised.


Have you read Frankenstein? Get some cookies, drop me a comment and let’s get this book club going!

I don’t review books professionally. These reviews are mainly a small summary and my opinion on books I’ve loved, they are not intended to be anything more. All ‘reviews’ include a picture, title and name of author linking to the book’s Goodreads listing, the blurb from the back of the book and my non-professional verdict.

For all other book reviews, please take a look here.

Sign up for my newsletter for updates on my books and recommendations to help you grow as a writer:

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WWW Wednesday 15th November 2017

This meme is hosted by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. A similar meme, This Week in Books is hosted by Lipsyy Lost and Found.

Why not join in? Just answer the following three questions in a post and then put a link to that post in the comments over at Taking on a World of Words.

WWW Wednesday

There hasn’t been much any movement since my last post, so this will be quick!

This meme will be categorised together with my book reviews. All links will get you to the book’s Goodreads listing, as always 🙂

***

What I’m currently reading

Godsgrave

I’m fewer than 30 pages away from the end as I’m preparing this post on Tuesday, and I don’t want it to end!! IT’S SO GOOD, FRIENDS! My books look up to this with unrivalled hero worship<3

My review will follow next week Thursday once I’ve made sense of my feelings.

Blurb:

Assassin Mia Corvere has found her place among the Blades of Our Lady of Blessed Murder, but many in the Red Church ministry think she’s far from earned it. Plying her bloody trade in a backwater of the Republic, she’s no closer to ending Consul Scaeva and Cardinal Duomo, or avenging her familia. And after a deadly confrontation with an old enemy, Mia begins to suspect the motives of the Red Church itself.

When it’s announced that Scaeva and Duomo will be making a rare public appearance at the conclusion of the grand games in Godsgrave, Mia defies the Church and sells herself to a gladiatorial collegium for a chance to finally end them. Upon the sands of the arena, Mia finds new allies, bitter rivals, and more questions about her strange affinity for the shadows. But as conspiracies unfold within the collegium walls, and the body count rises, Mia will be forced to choose between loyalty and revenge, and uncover a secret that could change the very face of her world.

***

What I recently finished reading

… Nothing. *ahem*

***

What I think I’ll read next

The Language of Thorns

I’m still really looking forward to this. The way I’m getting through Godsgrave I’ll either start it today or tomorrow at the latest. The illustrations are so stunning and Leigh Bardugo is my queen, so I can’t wait to get to it.

Then again, I don’t want to finish Godsgrave so I have mixed feelings.

Blurb:

Love speaks in flowers. Truth requires thorns.

Travel to a world of dark bargains struck by moonlight, of haunted towns and hungry woods, of talking beasts and gingerbread golems, where a young mermaid’s voice can summon deadly storms and where a river might do a lovestruck boy’s bidding but only for a terrible price.

Inspired by myth, fairy tale, and folklore, #1 New York Times–bestselling author Leigh Bardugo has crafted a deliciously atmospheric collection of short stories filled with betrayals, revenge, sacrifice, and love.

Perfect for new readers and dedicated fans, these tales will transport you to lands both familiar and strange—to a fully realized world of dangerous magic that millions have visited through the novels of the Grishaverse.

This collection of six stories includes three brand-new tales, all of them lavishly illustrated with art that changes with each turn of the page, culminating in six stunning full-spread illustrations as rich in detail as the stories themselves.

Heralding

WonderWoman Warbringer will have to wait while I read this ARC <3 My thanks to the author for sending me a copy. I loved the prequel Eleonore last year and can’t wait to get to this! It’s on my kindle ready and waiting ^-^

Blurb:

Life was simple for Eléonore when her biggest concerns were hunting demons, stacking shelves, and pulling off the single mother gig.

But that was before the night at the Citadelle two months ago. The night when she killed an Elder sorcerer. The night she discovered her own destructive powers.

Now Eléonore’s life is defined by questions of will…

Will her dangerous powers and Iníonaofa heritage ever be explained to her?
Will her son’s father make a reappearance in her life?
Will her son discover the terrible truth of her nighttime hunts?
Will the demon who offered her protection come for her due?

With chaos brewing in Daemoniar—the demon realm—and a tyrannical group on the rise, one thing is for certain…

Eléonore’s about to stumble into a whole new hellhole of trouble.

***

Have you read any of these and would like to chat about it? I look forward to hearing from you if you do – just leave a comment below and we can get this book club started!

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A-Z Name Prompts – V

Hi, friends!

It’s occurred to me that I’ve been rather terrible at posting these little prompts. My apologies :/ To be honest, I completely forgot to do the poll for this one two weeks ago, and then I almost forgot to do the poll again last week. There’s been so much going on recently that writing short prompts just hasn’t been a priority.

But I’m here now, so let’s get on with it! 🙂

Here are the results from the last (and very late) poll:

I blame the low numbers on me not doing it sooner -.-

As always, if you want to use the prompt go ahead! If you publish it please let me know so I can be nosy ^-^

***

Verrill

(m.; loyal)

Loyalty was everything. Loyalty was the only honour that mattered. Verrill had grown up believing it, and he’d sat by his Da’s death bed swearing it.

But loyalty was difficult when your king told you to slaughter a village of women and children.

“Your orders, captain?”

His men stood behind him, awaiting orders. Thirty women and five children knelt before him, heads lowered in fear and whimpering, awaiting his judgement.

He had come so far. Just one more step.

He wasn’t sure he wanted to take it.

“Captain?”

His men had never seen him falter. He’d been raised to the rank of captain because he acted quickly and always–always–for the benefit of his king.

He had been against the creation of these villages in the first place. They were breeding grounds, a means for his king to control the population, and they were wrong. He hadn’t voiced his concerns. It wasn’t his place. His king would have Verrill hunted and executed if he sensed any sign of disobedience.

But to kill 25 innocent people because they hadn’t birthed enough children?

Every good man had his limits.

“Captain? Orders?”

Verrill stood straight. “These people are traitors to our glorious king. I will kill them myself.” He swallowed. He’d never been a good liar, and his men knew him too well. “Go watch the camp. I will return when I’m done.”

“Captain?”

“Go back, and leave me to it. Now.”

He didn’t miss the glances his men shared, but they did as they were told. Loyalty was the only honour that mattered, after all.

He waited until his men were out of earshot, and sheathed his sword.

“Leave this place. Never come back here.”

The women didn’t get up. Bloody Mercy, they were too scared to even try to run for their lives.

He sighed. Dropped his sword as a sign of goodwill.

Finally, they looked up.

“Get out of here. Now. If you leave the country, the king can’t touch you.”

They stumbled to their feet, and, still whimpering, ran with their children in their arms.

Verrill knew he’d done the right thing. If it saved lives, it had to be right.

He just hoped none of his men would question the lack of blood on the soil.


For all other writing prompts, check here.

For CookieBreak’s homepage, click me.

All writing belongs to the author, Sarina Langer

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NaNoWriMo Progress Report Week 2

Happy Friday, friends!

How are your WIPs coming along? Have you all got through the first full week of NaNo madness okay? <3

My week has been slow, BUT there’s a good reason for that. I wanted to focus on finishing the first monster edit on Darkened Light which is now done and printed (until I ran out of paper anyway) and with my critique partners. Now that’s out of the way, I can give NaNo hell next week! And I still wrote 9193 words this week anyway, so suck on that, NaNo 😀

The total word count now stands at

13,994

Nowhere near what I hoped to have by now, but progress is progress and I’m over 10K into Book 3! Who cares if it’s not as much as I wanted? I’ve done good, and so have you, NaNonites <3

   She lay on a cold stone table, wrists spread to opposite sites and bound to cool hooks above her head, legs tied up in the same way below her.
   She took one deep breath in, let one deep breath out. Repeated the process. Her heart was still hammering.
   She thought of her mother’s arms, the way she’d smelled of roses, and closed her eyes until she could feel her mother’s comforting embrace. Her mind still raced.
   She focused on the spot on her hips where her daggers usually sat, tried so hard to feel them now, but nothing was there. Terror still gripped her.
   Fear threatened to overpower her again. Her stomach constricted, her throat tightened, and her eyes burnt when wave after wave of horror washed over her and made her sob.
   She had never felt so pathetic. When her father had beaten her mother, she had been free to help.
   When her father had beaten her until she couldn’t see through the pain, she had been able to kick out.
   When she had gone back to Grozma years later, daggers comforting by her sides and her step sure, she had been able to repay him for all the times he had made his mother regret marrying him.
   But now she had nothing, and it terrified her more than anything else could.


Sign up for my newsletter for updates on my books (like early cover reveals…) and recommendations to help you grow as a writer:

All content belongs to the author, Sarina Langer.

You can find all original images on my Pinterest Board.

For all previous updates on my books’ progress, click me!

For Cookie Break’s front page, take a look here.

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Review: Daughters of the Oak by Becky Wright

“1646 – The English Civil War. The Royalists of King Charles I, and Cromwell’s Parliamentarians, battle, both eager to lay claim to a tattered country, where life has become cheap and death trivial.

Though, for the lowly commoner, a greater, far more devious, war rages. It threatens the souls of the weak, timid and needy. Seeking refuge in the Lord’s word, God fearing folk employ the skills of one man, the Witchfinder. His success speaks of his talent, to seek out, punish and rid the countryside of Witches, the Devil’s Whores.

2016 – A paranormal team are called to investigate, as poltergeist activity brings terror to one family. Under the cover of darkness, in silent suburbia, an endless night of battle against evil ensues, until finally, a new day dawns.

Lies, secrets, and treachery, it seems, are never forgotten.
Welcome to Manningtree…”

What I thought:

I read The Manningtree Account earlier this year and was very intrigued by the story Wright tells, all the more so because it’s based on actual history. I was really excited to read the extended edition, and definitely not just because I got a signed copy <3 *purrs*

There were several new parts in Daughters of the Oak. The new beginning adds interesting background info to the three women haunting the present, and the new last chapter adds a chilling ending to the book. The way the final chapter ends makes me think that there might be a chilling spin-off in the future!

While I was interested in the new backstory and learning what ultimately led to the haunting, I enjoyed the chapters in the present more. Great care was taken in imitating the language of the time which made it sound more authentic, but it also made it harder for me to get into the story.

Usually, horror and I don’t get on, but this wasn’t outright terrifying as much as it was disturbing and a little unsettling. It worked really well for the story and meant that I could read it without losing any sleep, which is a miracle given how easily I scare 😛

If you’d like to know more about the history involved, Wright includes a short lesson on the years she’s drawn from at the back. Knowing this book is based on actual events made it more chilling for me and I appreciated the insight at the end.

The only thing I’d say is that it could have done with fewer commas. There were far too many, and as an author and editor myself the overuse was annoying me a bit.

If you’re a fan of horror and books set in our history but can’t usually cope with the genre like me, then I recommend you try this one!


Have you read Daughters of the Oak? Get some cookies, drop me a comment and let’s get this book club going!

I don’t review books professionally. These reviews are mainly a small summary and my opinion on books I’ve loved, they are not intended to be anything more. All ‘reviews’ include a picture, title and name of author linking to the book’s Goodreads listing, the blurb from the back of the book and my non-professional verdict.

For all other book reviews, please take a look here.

Sign up for my newsletter for updates on my books and recommendations to help you grow as a writer:

Leave a Comment

NaNoWriMo Progress Report Week 1

Can you believe Week 1 of NaNoWriMo is over already? How are you getting on, NaNonites? 🙂 Every week I’ll share my progress on Friday, and I’ll include a character aesthetic and a quote each time, too, so feel free to join in and compare word counts! After we’ve prepared together, I’d love to know how you’re getting on <3

These updates will be short, because it’s NaNo and I don’t want to keep you.

I’ve had a slow start to the challenge. I wasn’t well yesterday which set me back already, and it’s only Day 3! Trust me to get sick during the most inconvenient month of the year #rude

This week, I wrote 5019 words, which brings my current total to…..

5019

*ahem*

It is Week 1, after all 🙂

   Hope bubbled up inside her. She took deep breaths, closed her eyes, and willed her vision to come forth. She could feel it, right there, trapped just like she was, struggling to break through. She reached into herself just like Ailis had taught her, reached out to the source of her gift, found that sliver she’d so desperately needed, and tried to guide it.
   Pressure built up inside her head until it felt ready to burst. It hurt. But she was close. She guided her gift where it needed to go, held onto it as tight as she could, and forced it into her head.
   Light exploded in her mind and filled her prison. Intense pain cracked through her skull and gripped her mind so tight she couldn’t breathe. A thin line of blood ran down her nose, dried on her lips.
   Rachael gasped. And passed out.


Sign up for my newsletter for updates on my books (like early cover reveals…) and recommendations to help you grow as a writer:

All content belongs to the author, Sarina Langer.

You can find all original images on my Pinterest Board.

For all previous updates on my books’ progress, click me!

For Cookie Break’s front page, take a look here.

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Review: Dracula by Bram Stoker

“The vampire novel that started it all, Bram Stoker’s Dracula probes deeply into human identity, sanity, and the dark corners of Victorian sexuality and desire. When Jonathan Harker visits Transylvania to help Count Dracula purchase a London house, he makes horrifying discoveries about his client. Soon afterward, disturbing incidents unfold in England—an unmanned ship is wrecked at Whitby, strange puncture marks appear on a young woman’s neck, and a lunatic asylum inmate raves about the imminent arrival of his “Master”—culminating in a battle of wits between the sinister Count and a determined group of adversaries.”

What I thought:

I always find it harder to review classics, because you’ve either read this already, or you haven’t but know what it’s about anyway because everyone does but don’t care to read it for various reasons. No one’s going to be surprised if I say that Dracula is the original vampire novel, right?

So I won’t bore you with what the book is about, and hop straight to the review 🙂 If you do have questions about the plot, ask away.

(Oh, also, I was an idiot and forgot to note down quotes for this review, so it’ll lack in that regard – what I do have might include spoilers, so be careful with them)

I loved the first few chapters, especially Harker’s journey to Dracula’s castle. I did roll my eyes a couple of times thinking ‘ugh, cliche’, and then remembered that Bram Stoker is the genius who invented these cliches. So if this seems full of cliches to you remember it’s only because everyone else copied him 😛

The only bits I wasn’t sure about were Mina’s diary entries, but later on it became clear how they were relevant.

I am too miserable, too low-spirited, too sick of the world and all in it, including life itself, that I would not care if I heard this moment the flapping of the wings of the angel of death. And he has been flapping those grim wings to some purpose of late – Lucy’s mother and Arthur’s father, and now…

When I read classics, I always worry that the writing style will be too different to modern novels and that I’ll struggle to get into it because of this, but that wasn’t the case here. Dracula was easy to read and follow (a few paragraphs written in heavy accent notwithstanding) and even though the writing obviously isn’t modern, I didn’t find it difficult. The paragraphs spanning an entire page could have been shorter, but the story was engaging enough that they didn’t bug me too much. The descriptions were beautifully atmospheric and made it easy to imagine everything in vivid detail.

The only thing that surprised me which you might not expect is that Dracula himself doesn’t feature more. He acts behind the scenes throughout the book and is behind just about every event, but he doesn’t appear actively often. Everything happens because he makes it happen, but he possibly has the fewest lines out of all the characters.

Reading a book knowing it’s the story that started all these other incredible stories was special, and I think I enjoyed it for that alone. It’s not often you read a book that created a genre!

If you’ve been wanting to read more classics and happen to like horror and/or vampire books, this could be an excellent starting point. The writing is easy to follow, the plot engaging, and it is the vampire novel that started it all 😉


Have you read Dracula? Get some cookies, drop me a comment and let’s get this book club going!

I don’t review books professionally. These reviews are mainly a small summary and my opinion on books I’ve loved, they are not intended to be anything more. All ‘reviews’ include a picture, title and name of author linking to the book’s Goodreads listing, the blurb from the back of the book and my non-professional verdict.

For all other book reviews, please take a look here.

Sign up for my newsletter for updates on my books and recommendations to help you grow as a writer:

Leave a Comment

WWW 1st November 2017

This meme is hosted by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. A similar meme, This Week in Books is hosted by Lipsyy Lost and Found.

Why not join in? Just answer the following three questions in a post and then put a link to that post in the comments over at Taking on a World of Words.

WWW Wednesday

HAPPY NANOWRIMO, FRIENDS! 😀 Who’s excited? 😀

This meme will be categorised together with my book reviews. All links will get you to the book’s Goodreads listing, as always 🙂

***

What I’m currently reading

Godsgrave

NaNoWriMo Read 1/3 is Godsgrave <3 I’ve been excited to read this ever since I read Nevernight earlier this year, and even though I’ve only just started this I’m deeply (read: DEEPLY!) in love with it. I couldn’t have picked a better novel to see me through the first half of NaNo <3 <3 <3

Blurb:

Assassin Mia Corvere has found her place among the Blades of Our Lady of Blessed Murder, but many in the Red Church ministry think she’s far from earned it. Plying her bloody trade in a backwater of the Republic, she’s no closer to ending Consul Scaeva and Cardinal Duomo, or avenging her familia. And after a deadly confrontation with an old enemy, Mia begins to suspect the motives of the Red Church itself.

When it’s announced that Scaeva and Duomo will be making a rare public appearance at the conclusion of the grand games in Godsgrave, Mia defies the Church and sells herself to a gladiatorial collegium for a chance to finally end them. Upon the sands of the arena, Mia finds new allies, bitter rivals, and more questions about her strange affinity for the shadows. But as conspiracies unfold within the collegium walls, and the body count rises, Mia will be forced to choose between loyalty and revenge, and uncover a secret that could change the very face of her world.

***

What I recently finished reading

Frankenstein

I enjoyed it and it was much easier to read than you might expect from a classic (I know I’m always worried that the writing style will be too difficult), but I’m definitely happy to read modern books again now, too. Two classics a month is plenty 😛

Blurb:

Mary Shelley began writing Frankenstein when she was only eighteen. At once a Gothic thriller, a passionate romance, and a cautionary tale about the dangers of science, Frankenstein tells the story of committed science student Victor Frankenstein. Obsessed with discovering the cause of generation and life and bestowing animation upon lifeless matter, Frankenstein assembles a human being from stolen body parts but; upon bringing it to life, he recoils in horror at the creature’s hideousness. Tormented by isolation and loneliness, the once-innocent creature turns to evil and unleashes a campaign of murderous revenge against his creator, Frankenstein.

Frankenstein, an instant bestseller and an important ancestor of both the horror and science fiction genres, not only tells a terrifying story, but also raises profound, disturbing questions about the very nature of life and the place of humankind within the cosmos: What does it mean to be human? What responsibilities do we have to each other? How far can we go in tampering with Nature? In our age, filled with news of organ donation genetic engineering, and bio-terrorism, these questions are more relevant than ever.

Daughters of the Oak

I flew through the rest of Daughters of the Oak in the end. While I didn’t like it as much as the original version, The Manningtree Account, I did enjoy it and it made for a perfect little October read. Plus, it’s a signed copy, which is always a plus 😀

I’m a bit behind, but hopefully my reviews for Frankenstein and Daughters of the Oak will follow soon.

Blurb:

1646 – The English Civil War. The Royalists of King Charles I, and Cromwell’s Parliamentarians, battle, both eager to lay claim to a tattered country, where life has become cheap and death trivial.

Though, for the lowly commoner, a greater, far more devious, war rages. It threatens the souls of the weak, timid and needy. Seeking refuge in the Lord’s word, God fearing folk employ the skills of one man, the Witchfinder. His success speaks of his talent, to seek out, punish and rid the countryside of Witches, the Devil’s Whores.

2016 – A paranormal team are called to investigate, as poltergeist activity brings terror to one family. Under the cover of darkness, in silent suburbia, an endless night of battle against evil ensues, until finally, a new day dawns.

Lies, secrets, and treachery, it seems, are never forgotten.
Welcome to Manningtree…

***

What I think I’ll read next

The Language of Thorns

This shall be NaNoWriMo read 2/3 <3 I love Leigh Bardugo, so it’s only fitting that two of her books are on my NaNo reading list. I’m fairly sure I won’t get through all three, but this one is short and the illustrations are stunning, so I gave it priority over WonderWoman – Warbringer.

Blurb:

Love speaks in flowers. Truth requires thorns.

Travel to a world of dark bargains struck by moonlight, of haunted towns and hungry woods, of talking beasts and gingerbread golems, where a young mermaid’s voice can summon deadly storms and where a river might do a lovestruck boy’s bidding but only for a terrible price.

Inspired by myth, fairy tale, and folklore, #1 New York Times–bestselling author Leigh Bardugo has crafted a deliciously atmospheric collection of short stories filled with betrayals, revenge, sacrifice, and love.

Perfect for new readers and dedicated fans, these tales will transport you to lands both familiar and strange—to a fully realized world of dangerous magic that millions have visited through the novels of the Grishaverse.

This collection of six stories includes three brand-new tales, all of them lavishly illustrated with art that changes with each turn of the page, culminating in six stunning full-spread illustrations as rich in detail as the stories themselves.

***

Have you read any of these and would like to chat about it? I look forward to hearing from you if you do – just leave a comment below and we can get this book club started!

Sign up for my newsletter for updates on my books and recommendations to help you grow as a writer:

3 Comments

NaNo Prep Sessions – Week 5 | You’ve Got This, NaNonite!

It’s almost time, NaNonite. Tomorrow, we begin the month-long madness that is NaNoWriMo. Your characters are ready. Your world is waiting to be explored. Your plot is outlined. You’ve prepared as much as you’re comfortable with (or, let’s be honest, as much as you had time for).

If you’ve missed anything or would like to remind yourself of a previous session, here you go:

Week 1 – Your Characters

Week 2 – Your World

Week 3 – Your Plot

Week 4 – Your Reading List and Rewards

I have also added all five posts here:

Writing Resources

And there’s a new category as well, so no matter where you look, you’ve got all NaNo prep sessions in one place 🙂

I have only a few last words of advice for you:

  • Don’t stop writing to do research. Make a note of what you need to look up, and move on.
  • Don’t stop writing to edit. You’ve got a big word count goal ahead of you, friend. There’s no time for that.
  • Don’t cheat and count the 15K words you wrote before November as NaNo progress. The aim is to write 50K in November, not 5,000 in September, 10,000 in October, and then the last 35,000 in November. I know it makes it easier, but it’s not the point of NaNo, okay? 🙂
  • If you need a snack break, take a breather and have that snack.
  • If you feel like you need a break, take a break. It will seem like a terrible idea in the middle of NaNo, but sometimes just taking one day off can do wonders for your productivity!
  • Share your daily and weekly word counts online. It’ll hold you accountable, and the #bookstagram community on Instagram will cheer you on until their throats are sore! Twitter is another excellent place to announce how you’re doing.
  • Speaking of which, join the #authorconfession tag on Twitter (or Instagram or Snapchat). Next month is all about NaNo, which makes this an excellent community for sharing your word counts and connecting with authors who are going through the same madness you are! Here are the prompts:

  • Have a mascot, something you’ll only use when it’s time to write. I have a shirt I only wear when I write the first draft. That way, when the shirt goes on, it tells my brain it’s time to write and I’m immediately in the right mindset! It might seem too easy or even silly to you, but try it! 😉
  • Add me on the official NaNo website so we can be inspired by each other’s word counts.
  • I’ll be sharing my weekly word counts right here, on this blog, and I’ll be sharing my daily word counts on Instagram and Twitter. Naturally, you’re welcome to join me and compare notes 🙂

Now, are you ready to do this? Are you ready to write the first draft of your novel? BRING IT ON, NANOWRIMO!

*ferocious battle roar*

You’ve come this far. Even if you haven’t prepared that much or at all, you’ve decided to do NaNo and accomplish something amazing next month. Often, setting your mind to a task is the hardest part, and you’ve set your mind to this! You can do this, NaNoNite! You’re ready, your characters are ready, your world is ready, your tea and snacks are ready – all you need to do now is write the words.

If you’re planning on writing every day next month, that’s a measly 1,666 words per day! If you’re planning on taking the weekends off, like me, your goal is only 2,272! Not even 2,5k!That’s not so bad. You can do this, NaNonite. Think how incredible you’ll feel this time next month when NaNoWriMo is behind you and you’ve written a massive 50,000 words! Think of the rewards you won’t get to treat yourself to unless you hit those word counts!

I know it’s daunting, but you’re not doing it alone. I’ve got you. If you join the #bookstagram and #authorconfession community, they’ll have your back, too. And at the end of November, we’ll all have achieved something amazing together.

Embrace your WIP’s magic, and show that mad word count who’s boss!


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