Seattle Specific Saturdays: AFK Renton Multi-Author Event Must Read! Today!

I love finding new local authors and Jeffrey Cook has set up another great AFK event you simply must check out! For more information, see the flyer below or visit the event’s facebook page here.

 

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Local Event: Destination Staycation at the AFK Renton, WA June 27

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8 local independent authors come together for one event. Selling and signing books all afternoon and evening.
AJ Downey, Sechin Tower, Lee French, Connie Jasperson, Lindsay Schopfer, Stephen Matlock, David Moore and Jeffrey Cook are the featured authors this time around.

at 2:00pm – 9:00pm
AFK Elixirs & Eatery

3750 E Valley Rd, Renton, Washington 98055
I’m excited to see some authors I’ve been reading and meet some new ones! Who’s coming down for burgers, beers, and/or books???

Book Review: Foul is Fair (Fair Folk Chronicles) (Volume 1) by Jeffrey Cook and Katherine Perkins

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Foul is Fair (Fair Folk Chronicles) (Volume 1) by Jeffrey Cook and Katherine Perkins

A YA Fantasy Novel published through Amazon Digital Services (05/15/15)

 

Summary:

“You Hawaiian lawn gnome people are very strange.” (Kindle Location 2314).

Megan has known Lani for quite some time, but she never knew Lani was different. In fact, Megan never knew that she herself was different. Both girls are only half human. While Lani lives with both her parents, Megan’s dad has been absent for most of her life. When she finds out her dad is in trouble, though, she jumps at the chance to help save him. Aided by the pixie Ashling and her Crow, Cassia, and eventually a real live almost-knight, the girls set off on their quest – only to be interrupted by the politics in faerie land. They must first appease the faerie leader before saving Megan’s dad, but they find out that he didn’t just accidentally get himself into the mess he’s in, he was set up! A full on political war with all sorts of odd creatures rages and Megan must figure out what to do and in the process figure out who she is and what she wants to be.

 

Keywords:

 Faerie, politics, high fantasy, world building, mis-appearances, war, strangeness, magic, distinctions, evil, pixie, butterflies, knight, quest, heroines, queens, dancing, music

 

My Review:

 Megan has ADHD. The whole book is one big batch of ADHD and to someone who has never had anything like ADHD it is very peculiar. The books that mimic the thing they are talking about are rare and sometimes hard to follow. In Foul is Fair, the writing style, dialogue, and descriptions are written in the style of ADHD. The feeling one gets while reading this book is that thoughts are somewhat scattered and random. Many of the plot points and motivations seem random. Even from the beginning you are plunged into the story without too much of a foothold before the action ramps up and takes away running with you. It is very different to be reading a book like this. If this is how Megan and others with ADHD feel and interpret the world, boy do I get it now.

This book, as it is the first in a fantasy series, takes a lot of time to build up the world and the political scene. Faerie land is complex and so are the creatures. If fantasy with lots of different creatures and different types of relationships and a complex other-universe with its own laws and guidelines is your thing, you will love the Fae Chronicles. I’m more of a character lover than a complex fantasy world lover.

Megan and Lani were characters I enjoyed. They were both very different from each other and somewhat unique as characters. Megan personified ADHD, but she was also artistic and musically inclined. Lani was some interesting ethnic mix and her family, being openly (to each other) faerie inclined, were super odd and fascinating.

This novel was published through Amazon Digital Services May 5th, 2015 and is available on Amazon here.

 

TL;DR Star Rating: 3.50

 

Links for more information:

Goodreads

Jeffrey Cook on FreeValley Publishing

Jeffrey Cook’s Facebook

Save the Date! May 27th – Bard & Starlet Radio Hour Boxley’s North Bend

FreeValley Publishing is proud to present, Bard & Starlet Radio Hour – Live on stage May 27th at Boxley’s Jazz Club in North Bend, WA

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Scenes by six of our authors will be performed by actors on stage in a style reminiscent of old radio plays…Kind of like your voice-acted audio book comes to life before your eyes!

Produced by Sheri J. Kennedy and FreeValley Publishing
Directed by Michael Renney
Starring Dylan Cook, Michael Renney, FVP Authors and more…

Be sure not to miss this exciting community event! Free Admission at Boxley’s Jazz Club. We recommend enjoying Boxley’s dinner, snacks and/or cocktails – they’re delicious!  boxleysplace.com

St. James Espresso has New Books by Local Authors!

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Anywhere near Kirkland, WA and need a good book or some great coffee? You can get some books by local authors and coffee at a local shop at St. James Espresso.

I was also at last Saturday’s Release Party for Jeffrey Cook’s Third Dawn of Steam novel, the anthology Sound and Fury he has a story in, and AJ Downey’s newest release in her series.

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As both a reader and a writer I absolutely love these types of physical meet and greet and eat events. You can have one on one conversations with real writers and get signed copies of books (of which I did both). Thanks A.J. Downey, Jeffrey Cook, and the AFK for this lovely event last Saturday, can’t wait for the next author event at the AFK coming up in June.

Book Review: Free-flowing Stories by FreeValley Publishing Authors

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Free-flowing Stories by FreeValley Publishing Authors

An anthology published by FreeValley Publishing (11/01/14)

• CAN’T STOP SINGING by Kathleen Gabriel

“The music was loud, and she had to participate.” (Page 2).

She has an earworm that won’t let go and her life is fast consumed by the music in her head that she has to sing and sometimes dance to, until she can no longer hear herself. Can’t Stop Singing is a whimsical piece of writing that takes a small annoyance to the farthest reaches of the imagination. What happens if the songs in your head don’t ever stop?

• DARK DESCENSIONS by Kennedy J. Quinn

“When you remove free will, you remove restoration and leave vindictive judgment.” (Page 15).
“Truth will come, but it must be embraced through trust and understanding.” (Page 23).

The men of the government of Overseers butt heads with the council of the Sisterhood’s Underseers in the justice against a man who committed the vile act of rape. When one Sister sends the man Underneath she starts the political war between the Overseers and Underseers. This short prequel to Secret Order of the Overworld tells the story of how the turmoil in the Overworld really began and will pull you into a world of multiple dimensions and variable morals.

• DESIRÉE by David S. Moore

“‘RejuveMates rebuilds these women’s bodies, but in doing so it steals their souls.’ I knew then that I had to do something.” (Page 38).

RejuveMates sucks Dr. Brown into the allure of the subjects’ spells, their eternal beauty, and finally, their lack of free will. Thoughts of Desirée distract Dr. Brown from his own wife and family until he is convinced he has to and can do something for her. When people become a commercial commodity, like RejuveMates has done to these women, the company is questioned regarding its morals and taking away the women’s freedom of choice. Their argument is that they’ve given these otherwise destined for poverty and poor life choices women a resurrection and rebirth. David Moore describes this moral anxiety within Dr. Brown in a fascinating matter and the world he has built around this phenomenal genetic technology is wholly intriguing.

• A REASON TO SING by Victoria Bastedo

“…there were times when stubborn men were wrong.” (Page 66).
“In Shenandya the trees were the world, and the Wildenbury tree was the height of mystic focus. And now the Wildenbury trees were singing, pouring out their non-human voices as if sound was a river draining from a spout. All over the village people were stunned with amazement.” (Page 52).

Lewolenan has failed to pass the physical testing required to be a scout for Shenandya, but he is determined not to fail when his overbearing father tells him to find the reason the trees sing. This is a short companion story to Roots Entwine by Victoria Bastedo and tells a tale of acceptance and standing up for what one believes and in one’s self. Bastedo creates a fairy tale like world in Shenandya that is magical to behold.

• NIGHT OF STARS by Stephen J. Matlock

“People in Windmill, like people everywhere, loved to hear themselves complimented for their perspicacity.” (Location 2013).
“Money’s good for one thing-buying things-but you can’t buy friendship. You have to earn it…” (Location 1660).

Henry valentine is twelve, not a child anymore but not quite a man in the summer of 1951. He lives in Windmill, Texas, where people hung on every word of the preacher and the heat of the summer suffocated and turned minds to less acceptable notions. This was a time of religion, racism, and for Henry, it’s his coming of age story. The POV switches between Henry and Benjamin, much like in the novel this short story is a prequel of: Stars in the Texas Sky.

• ATAXIA AND THE GIRL OF LOST DREAMS by Rachel Barnard

“Be brave, girls. Take every opportunity you can.” (Location 2382).

The members of the government resistance group, Ataxia, think that MC – just a girl from a small village – can infiltrate an elite Academy, pose as a student, graduate with honors, be placed in a high up position in the military command, and work from the inside to advance the Ataxian cause. She wants to do it because she wishes to restore balance to a society in which the government favors the rich and persecutes the poor. This short story is the prequel to Ataxia and the Ravine of Lost Dreams and tells the story in the days leading up to where the novel begins.

• MIDDAY’S MADNESS by T. Tommia Wright

“If someone tells you not to go somewhere, be daring. Go!” (Location 2516).

Jalem Vitalma is young enough to slip away unseen, but not old enough to be considered worthy of being taught, until she happens upon a wounded stranger who guides her through the art of healing. This prequel to T. Tommia Wright’s upcoming fantasy novel, Escorting in Twilight, is full of magic and a young girl who has an inquisitive mind and a yearning for knowledge. Get caught up in the fantasy world spun by Wright, where magic prevails.

• DAWN OF STEAM: THE RAT KING by Jeffrey Cook

“While unlikely to see a much wider circulation, the daily chronicling assignments of a small boy along for a great journey provide a perspective eon the trip, on the day-to-day life aboard the airship, and on the crew themselves that is not present elsewhere.” (Location 2580).

From the assignments of Matthew Fisher-Swift, ward of the Captain, on his attempts to capture the Rat Baronet in a ship in the early 1800’s. There are also some accounts from Harriet Wright. If the rat continues to live, it may well chew through enough to damage the dirigible and threaten the safety of the crew aboard, giving much importance to Matthew’s mission. This very focused story is delightful to read and tells the story of one minor character from Jeffrey Cook’s Dawn of Steam trilogy.

Links for more information:

FreeValley Publishing’s blog

Goodreads

Amazon

Renton, WA Book Release Party for Jeffrey Cook’s Mina Cortez From Bouquets to Bullets

Do you like books or burgers or supporting Indie authors or the AFK Tavern? Yes to all these things? Great! You should come down this Saturday the 28th from 2 PM to 9 PM.  to the AFK Elixirs & Eatery (3750 E Valley Rd, Renton, Washington 98055).

For more details go to the facebook event page here:

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Book Review: Mina Cortez: From Bouquets to Bullets by Jeffrey Cook

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Mina Cortez: From Bouquets to Bullets by Jeffrey Cook

A YA Science Fiction Novel published by Fire and Ice (01/29/15)

 

Summary:

Mina has always been the good influence, but when she strikes out on her own to clear her friend’s name she runs into all sorts of trouble. Mina hoped to get the ballerina chip, but was resigned to follow in her parents’ footsteps running the family business, Emerald City Flowers and Design. Instead she got way more than she could have hoped for: The Inquisitor Chip for the Secret Police. Flower deliveries is the perfect cover for a member of the Secret Police and her first assignment is to lay low and observe. She’s young, she’s confident, and she has not yet learned to follow directions. How could she when she suspects something more sinister is going on and doesn’t know who to trust within the Allied Investigative Agency? Along with her friend Amiko, the reliable antique Chevy Vlad, and her own natural inquisitiveness, Mina will do everything she can to solve the kidnapping of her friend Scott and find out what’s really going on in the AIA.

 

Keywords:

Strong Females, Diverse Cast, Action, Thriller, Mystery, Seattle, Secret Police, Futuristic, Technology

 

My Review:

Mina is a character I can relate to because she doesn’t get everything that she wants. She’s confident in what she believes. She stands up for her friends and seeks out action. Not everyone gets to be a ballerina, and Mina is no exception. She is too short and stocky, in her mind, to be chosen for the elusive ballerina chip.

In a world where adolescents can work their hardest trying to paint their own futures and make their own destiny, it is their chipping that ultimately decides their fate. This is a wonderful and very futuristic technology that Jeffrey Cook exploits to the utmost of his imagination. “Implanting someone with everything they needed to know to do their assigned job perfectly had become a mostly exact science in the century-and-some it had been in use, but complications still came up.” (Page 23).

This is every school kid’s fantasy. What if you didn’t have to read and study for years on end, what if you could just download all that information? I bet most kids have salivated over this kind of technology at some point in their lengthy education. Cook fleshes out what it would really be like to be able to download a college’s worth of information in an instant and be able to hop right into the middle of a career. Of course, it’s not without its limitations. To be a ballerina one must have the years of physical training and ideal body type. To be a member of the Secret Police requires similar physical training and a great cover identity. “A chip might give an ambitious buyer perfect knowledge of human anatomy and perfect reactions to deal with every mishap that might arise. If, however, the recipient didn’t already have perfectly steady hands and a curiosity regarding the connections of muscles, nerves and organs, the chances of a surgeon’s chip malfunctioning went up exponentially.” (Page 23).

One of my favorite parts about Mina Cortez: Bouquets to Bullets was the world Jeffrey Cook built and his fascinating tidbits of futuristic technology. The way people communicated was different. The way people traveled was different. Every so often Cook would throw in something specific that was different more than a hundred years in the future.

I loved all the main characters. They each had a unique trait that the reader could hold onto as an identifier. Miko has a lead foot and a penchant for aikido. Scott is addicted to video games and is a picky eater (allergies). Mina never seems to be able to stick to her Inquisitor instructions and she’s constantly getting into and out of a sticky situation. She also can identify both her assailants and her friends through scent alone. How cool is that?

If you want action, you’ll get it with Mina Cortez. If you want a strong, kick-butt female main character and a chirpy optimist sidekick, Bouquets to Bullets is your book.

This novel was published by Fire and Ice January 29th, 2015 and is available on Amazon here.

 

TL;DR Star Rating: 4.75

 

Links for more information:

Goodreads

Jeffrey Cook on FreeValley Publishing

Jeffrey Cook’s Facebook

FreeValley Publishing Authors: Upcoming Live Event at Snoqualmie Days

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Remember that countdown timer on my blog? it’s for this event! Come see FreeValley Publishing’s booth and snag all those books you haven’t read yet. Check out new books by Rachel Barnard (At One’s Beast), Victoria Bastedo (Roots Entwine) and Jeffrey Cook (Dawn of Steam Gods of the Sun). For more information on FreeValley Publishing, check out their website here!

Authors will be available to meet you and to sign books. The event is at Center Blvd SE, Snoqualmie, WA from 10-5. Hope to see you there!