Tag Archives: Books and Reading

What Books Should You be Buying? part 1

Image result for Blackbirds sing

Where to find ‘Blackbirds Sing’.

What books should you be purchasing with your hard-earned cash? Well, come closer, beloved reader, and I will give you some excellent recommendations. This is the first of three posts about recommended readings. You can give them as gifts, buy them for your summer holiday reading, or just as a treat.

Blackbirds Sing, by Aiki Flinthart, is going to be considered a classic in future years. It is a series of interlocked tales, embroidering a story arch into a rich tapestry. It is set in an alternative past. Flinthart has quite a few successful novels under her belt, but this is a new venture for her. There is still plenty of action, but the intricate interweaving – of the characters and settings – is rich, deep, and wonderful. The illustrations by Caitlyn McPherson are glorious.

Pamela Jeff’s Five Dragons is an anthology of dragon stories, including a Steampunk dragon tale. Yes… she had me at Steampunk dragon. If I say anything else, you will just think I’m gushing.

 

Five Dragons: A Dragons of Eridan Collection by [Jeffs, Pamela]

Where to find ‘Five Dragons’

Gillian Polack is one of the best writers in Australia (and the world), using her academic background to strengthen her narratives, making them compelling reading. I can recommend all her books, but I have a particular fondness for The Wizardry of Jewish Women, with its haunted lemon tree. The Year of the Fruitcake is her latest book. I think. I haven’t read her books in order of publication, because you don’t need too. They stand on their own merit.

The Year Of The Fruit Cake Front Cover With Text

Where to find ‘The Year of the Fruit Cake’

 

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Filed under Aiki Flinthart, Australian Author, Australian Steampunk Author, Book Review, Books & reading, Caitlyn McPherson, Gillian Polack, Pamela Jeffs, Recommended Reading, Steampunk

Reading for Fun and Profit

the-little-book-of-hours-of-amiens-nicolas-blairie-image-from-tumblr

I make no apologies when claiming to love reading. I was reading before I went to school, thanks to my parents reading to me every night.

All writers start out as readers. If someone tells me that they write books but don’t read them, I can’t help but wonder how he knows to construct a sentence, a paragraph, a story arc, and how to avoide clichés and stereotypes. How does he know what genre he is writing in, and what is already in that that genre.

So, a successful writer has to be a reader, for many reasons. Reading is the gateway to being a writer, any sort of writer. Off the top of my head, I read for:
1/ Pleasure;
2/ Research;
3/ Inspiration;
4/ Even more research (I do a lot of research); and
5/ Educational purposes.

Reading for research! You need to research for both fiction and nonfiction texts. I’ve done enough research to fill a library with historical detail for my Steampunk novels; and I still feel like I’ve never researched enough. I find it is easier with my scientific articles, because I can list my references!

Reading has physical and intellectual benefits apart from supplying inspiration and verisimilitude to your prose.

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This is why I have ten bookcases in my house and shelves packed with a double layer of books.

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Filed under Books & reading, Creativity, Inspiration, Research, Steampunk, The Writing Life

Celebrating 30 years of (official) Steampunk

Celebrating 30 years of (official) SteampunkCelebrating 30 years of (official) steampunk

K. W. Jeter coined the term ‘Steampunk’ in a letter to science fiction magazine Locus, with the letter printed in the magazine’s April 1987 issue. It was meant to be a playful, tongue-in-cheek term for the genre. It stuck!

Steampunk was around long before 1987, but its birthday is this month. Let’s celebrate!

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Filed under Alternative Subculture, Books & reading, Celebrating 30 years of Steampunk, Community, Cosplay, Steampunk, Uncategorized

Gap Year In Ghost Town Cover Preview

Gap Year In Ghost Town

This book is due out in August. I can’t wait!

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A Steampunk Guide to Hunting Monsters – Chapter Five

My free online book A Steampunk Guide to Hunting Monsters continues, and you can read Chapter 5. Automatons on an Airship for free online by clicking on the link or picture below. The Hunt is On! When a dissatisfied tourist starts messing with the settings of the automaton crew-members on the airship, the robots become a little too attentive, […]

via A Steampunk Guide to Hunting Monsters – Chapter 5. Automatons on an Airship — One Delightful Day

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Dead Magic – a book review by Chris Pavesic

Dead Magic is the fourth novel in Jorgensen’s Ingenious Mechanical Devices series and is the second novel to feature the characters of Emmeline and Immanuel. Although Dead Magic is a sequel, it is not necessary to read The Winter Garden first. (Although you absolutely should read all of the novels in this series! They are excellent.) Jorgensen provides enough details in the narrative to catch a reader up to the plot line of the new novel.

via Dead Magic by Kara Jorgensen — chrispavesic

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A Book Review by the Jane & Bex Book Blog

brian-stablefordI have one slight confusion over this book – the title. And it isn’t for the usual reasons since the book itself explains the origins of the phrase ‘scientific romance’ very clearly. No, I’m just confused that when I searched for it on various websites it didn’t appear under that title but had been expanded […]

via Scientific Romance – Brian Stableford (ed) — Jane & Bex book blog

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‘The Frozen Beginning’ Book Launch

IMG_3692I predict a great career for Daphne Robynson, the young woman in the middle of the photo. Not only did she self-publish her book, she arranged a limited edition cover for her launch. Brave, talented and a marketing whizz – she is a triple threat! Her book launch was not only a success for her; it was another great event run by Bookface Springfield.

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Filed under Bookface, Books & reading, The Writing Life, Uncategorized

Unpacking Old Friends.

Pile of Books

Old Friends

I have recently moved house. After being in storage for over six years, I am finally unpacking all my 40 book boxes, and I am finding a lot of old friends. While I have been unpacking, I have been putting books aside into a ‘to-be-reread’ pile, and a lot of the same authors kept popping up. Diana Wynne Jones. Charles De Lint. Terry Pratchett. Elizabeth Ann Scarborough. Neil Gaiman. R. A. MacAvoy.

Some of these authors have left us, but I decided to tell those still with the living how much I love their work. I don’t want to regret never saying anything when their work has meant so much to me and enrich my life. It might not be much, but a kind word is better than nothing at all.

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Filed under Books & reading, Love of words, Personal experience, Uncategorized