It was such fun to read from my new book “Seize the Donut” for the first time and to walk the audience through instructions on using chopsticks! Steven made me laugh with his short piece from the prompt of a funeral and jealousy. The cinnamon bun and stratta, as always, were very delicious.
Next year I resolve to take more pictures! I absolutely love Maple Valley Days. I spent 32 hours volunteering in the park for the festival and quite a few prior helping to organize. Even though I spent about 10 minutes total inside our booth (and was able to help sell a book while I was in the tent whoop whoop), as a volunteer I interact with almost every other vendor (over 100) and always talk up the local writer’s booth!
Here are all the pictures I took.
I was thrilled to see all the corgis (not pictured). At least 3 tri-colored corgis and one 16-week old puppy corgi that was such a cuddler!
The Unwitting Journeys of the Witty Miss Livingstone: Book I: Journey Key (Miss Liv Adventures 1)by Kennedy J. Quinn
A Steampunk Novel published by Amazon Digital Services Inc. (10/25/16)
Miss Livingstone doesn’t quite fit into her era because she is a woman with her own mind. It is the early 1900’s until Miss Livingstone peeks into the new bookshop and finds time-traveling stones that take her forward in time to meet the owner of the bookshop. Then she is taken back through time as she attempts to solve the mystery of the stones and find some good books on the side!
Time Travel, Female Heroine, Adventure, History, Literature, Literary References, Snoqualmie, Books, Steampunk, Evil, Lurking, Romance
A new blend of history, great literature, and adventure, Miss Liv Adventures was a fun read. I especially liked how every adventure ended with the steam train taking Miss Livingstone back (or forward) to her own time. I really liked the integration of books and history into the plot of the book and thought the details surrounding the key were marvelous and fantastical.
Miss Livingstone was curious to a fault and brave beyond doubt as she traveled across time and space, never forgetting her home and her love of books. The places she traveled to were rich and lively and there were just enough different settings to keep my interest but not too many to be confusing.
This novel was published by Amazon Digital Services Inc. on October 25th, 2016 and is available on Amazon here.
TL;DR Star Rating: 4.50
Links for more information:
Support local!!! St. James Espresso has a duo of fantastic owners who give back to their community in many ways. Currently they are supporting multiple authors. You should check out the books and grab a cup of coffee or one of their to-die-for breakfast burritos (I’m serious, it was so good I’m giving up lunch and dinner forever). They are so much so my favorite coffee shop that I’m setting my next (after nanowrimo) novel in the Kirkland area and heavily featuring St. James in the story. Stay tuned for more info on that….
I really want you to check out the cafe and buy a book. Please, please! See our display?
If you are a Nanower, please feel free to exchange your duck at the “take a duck – leave a duck” basket that I’ve set up on the main table. The four fiction novels featured in our display were all nano novels and if you are a fellow writer, I encourage you to support other authors. There is also the lovely FreeValley Publishing anthology and a fun short book of challenges. See below for more information.
Likeness by Sheri J. Kennedy
A Fiction Novel published by FreeValley Publishing (10/05/15)
“Funny how repetition of form brought ease and felt pleasing, but complete symmetry fell short of the mark for perfection.” (Page 12).
An all week case of the Mondays for Emmaline turns into an adventure of philosophical proportions. An assignment for an ad campaign for the newest drug, Assimilaire, has Emmaline creating a proposal where she has unwittingly made an idealized version of herself and her friend the brand-builder Charlie. The big wigs warm to her idea and send Emmaline and Charlie off to the cameras to star in the ad themselves. It’s a big hit all around and they are then sent off to the WWPA con for a live show and to receive awards for their great work. Staying at the Milieu midtown, Emmaline and Charlie learn some startling things about Assimilaire and what it really can do in a crowd.
Assimilate, Extroverts, Drug, Bomb Scare, Likeness, Similarities, Convention, Philosophy, Conversations, Difference, Becoming Another, Identity, Losing Self
Emmaline. What an incredibly classic yet fun name. I absolutely loved this name and loved that it was the first word of the book. Emmaline herself, however, isn’t as easy and fun as her name. Some of the things she does and thinks are easy to grasp and delightful, like the way she keeps her ‘girl shoes’ ready at work and tromps to and from work in her boots. The way her mind thinks and the words she uses is a bit hard to get into. She thinks in a slightly different dimension than I do and even though she’s in Seattle and there are references to Seattle I am not as familiar as I should be and some of the references are lost on me.
Likeness is an interesting book and a great fiction read for the more philosophical or psychological leaning reader. What does it mean to have an individual personality that is apart from the masses and what does it mean to fit in with the norm or to be like a prominent figure are two questions that are picked apart in this book.
Much of the book spent time on the question of ‘likeness’ or ‘sameness’ and the meat of the story was not divulged until halfway through the book. It is only halfway through that the true plot is revealed, the buildup to this point didn’t have as much tension as the latter half of the book. It could be argued that the plot of the story was the understanding of the concept of Likeness but for a fictional novel, the true plot didn’t pick up until after Emmaline and Charlie were at the conference. Therefore much of the beginning half of the story was spent on character building and environmental descriptions.
This novel was published by FreeValley Publishing on October 5th, 2015 and is available on Amazon here.
TL;DR Star Rating: 4.00
Links for more information:
Author Sheri J. Kennedy invites you to join her to Celebrate the Release of her third published novel, LIKENESS! There will be a Reading by the Author, Give-aways, and FREE CAKE! Books available for Signing, and will release same day on Amazon as paperback and Kindle. Come and celebrate this snappy contemporary novel that provides much to think about and plenty of humor as it considers the value of who we are.
Where: Pioneer Cafe in NB 202 W North Bend Way, North Bend, Washington 98045
When: Wednesday October 21st 6PM
*Stay tuned for Rachel Barnard’s review of Likeness on 10/22
From the Amazon book description:
What if everyone became the same?… In LIKENESS, early millennium Seattle-based workers Charlie and Emmaline are thrust from their comfortable and quirky marketing department to the Worldwide Pharmaceutical Conference stage. They present their ad for a new drug, Assimilaire, that minimizes social anxiety by making one feel the same as those around them.
In a strange twist, a free sample causes the audience members to not only feel like, but to become like athletic geek Charlie and adventurous artist Emmaline.
Forced to stay at the conference by a bomb scare, the affected hotel guests are caught in a grand experiment and a madcap romp exposing the nature of similarity and difference.
This snappy contemporary novel provides much to think about and plenty of humor as it considers the value of who we are.
The Buzz from readers: “energetic, fun language made for a quick, happy read. BONUS: i quite liked the concept.”
“Emmaline is a strong business woman I could totally relate to. I fell in love with her!”
“Give me a good-sized dose of Charlie! Line up the pseudo-Charlies – but none is as charming as the original. Lucky Emmaline!”
“A great fiction read for the more philosophical or psychological leaning reader.”
“Never before has the impending apocalyptic dystopia been such an amusing romp.”
Sheri J. Kennedy is the author of Secret Order of the Overworld under pen name Kennedy J. Quinn.You may have seen some of her images or read some of her blog posts on her blog SheriJKennedyRiverside. She participates in both local events (such as the Bard & Starlet Radio Hour at Boxley’s in North Bend) and nationwide events (Such as with SnoBoot SkethhCats in the Sketchbook Project and the A to Z Challenge). For more about Sheri, visit her blog at sherijkennedyriverside.wordpress.com
The following is Sheri J. Kennedy’s review of At One’s Beast, available here from Amazon. Thanks Sheri for you thoughtful review of At One’s Beast.
AT ONE’S BEAST is billed as a fairy tale twist and a low fantasy. I think it elevates both sub-genres by taking the basics of a moral tale and adding rich psychological complexity and atmosphere.
First, let me say, I was ‘in’ immediately and was driven to keep reading to the end – always key to a great read!
It starts with fairly traditional basics of Zos absorbing all the hate and evil of the town, and Alcina moving from fear and wanting to take him down, to seeing that he is something more. But the way the journey unfolds is uniquely modern from my perspective. For one, there’s a tricky twining of three characters that create a love triangle with Aethon. He is supposedly a friend, but has a fierce or even controlling streak that is a definite character flaw. Zos, while supposedly dangerous, shows gentleness and encourages Alcina’s strength. He is fearsome but magnetic in his caring and vulnerability.
Alcina, while having fears and showing her impetuous youthfulness, comes from a general stance of strength and independence that makes the reader believe she will conquer the beast. But as she spends time with Zos and on her own away from her family and community, she shows a vulnerability to love of nature, adventure, and love in general. Instead of making her seem weaker, her genuine emotion and new experiences develop her into her own woman – not Zos’. That’s not trite or typically fairy tale black and white. When she then comes to appreciate Zos, it makes her even stronger in my eyes and she lives and breathes instead of being a one dimensional fairy tale ‘princess-type’ heroine.
The only weakness to the tale I thought was the townsfolk, especially families, seem a little too hostile toward Alcina. This is chalked up to the evil influence, like a spell on them, so I can let it go. It’s just that all the other emotion in the story is so realistically supported that this actual fairy tale simplification of that point seems out of place in comparison. (Kind of a back-handed compliment!)
There is a lovely mix of grey tones throughout this story. There is a well-crafted atmospheric quality to the world – kind of an abstraction that allows complex contemplation while the clear action proceeds without dropping the reader for a single moment.
After reading Barnard’s debut novel, ATAXIA AND THE RAVINE OF LOST DREAMS, I was interested to see where this promising young author would go next. AT ONE’S BEAST exceeded my expectations and is very well developed. It’s a solid work that I would highly recommend.
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!
I always have fun at these local festivals and enjoy spending time chatting with my local author buddies. We had such great support from the FreeValley Publishing authors, see how many we stuffed back in our space? My favorite booth was ours of course! Second was two booths down with the fresh picked blueberries from Cle Elum.