Sunday, July 20, 2014

Aranya flies into Amazon's Fantasy bestsellers list!

It is a privilege to be listed alongside authors I have admired for years. Aranya has flown into the bestseller lists on Amazon this week, achieving #27 place in Fantasy > Sword & Sorcery and top 50 (#48) in Coming of Age stories.

This is what the reviewers say:

"With a host of colourful and many original character incarnations, the time honoured theme of good versus evil takes on a refreshingly unfamiliar dimension." - Author, Stephan Myers

"You want fantasy? Here it is, in its purest form." - Author, David Rose

"I especially enjoy reading about strong female characters."

"An imaginative tale, full of battle and heroism, romance and betrayal." - Author, Michael Andrews

Come and see why she's flying high. Aranya is available in all Amazon stores in Print and Ebook formats.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Aranya flies high at Bookviral

"He spins a mythical yarn, achieving a notable balance between luxurious detail and intense action" I was delighted to get a great review this week at Bookviral. "it’s Secchia’s world building prowess that really sets this tale apart" ... thanks to the excellent team there!

Aranya has been flying high since publication at Amazon.com. Come and see why reviewers are saying it's "full of battle and heroism, romance and betrayal."

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Dragon Dreams by Dusty Holloway - GR Review


Dragon Dreams (The Chronicles of Shadow and Light)Dragon Dreams by Dusty Lynn Holloway

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Dragon Dreams, the first in the Chronicles of Shadow and light, starts with one of the best opening prologues I have ever read. "In my shadow you sleep, hungry for my soul. In my heart you live, nurtured and at peace. In my life you belong, always. The red dawn of war clashes with the tide ..." Throughout the book the prose is rich and lyrical, yet the pace never flags. The tone is overwhelmingly dark, a world at the edge of ruin due to an escalating war between two powerful dragons, yet there are moments of light-heartedness and beauty amidst the fires.

Author Dusty Holloway has done a fine job of taking a fresh perspective on the Elves, Dwarves, Humans and Dragons of classic fantasy, and while there is a nod to old tropes, what is presented is fresh and well thought-out, each race characterised well, the Elves for example powerful and mysterious and very different to the Humans. The world-building is tightly woven into the story and never overwhelming or dry.

The main characters are the Human Nachal and the half-Elf Auri. The story concentrates strongly on the two of them, with minor riffs played by the Dwarf Dhurmic (who breaks his friend Nachal's nose at one point) and the Elf Watcher Liran, who has a decidedly unhealthy interest in Auri and plays the third point of a love triangle between him, Auri and Nachal. I am not big on love triangles, I have to admit, but this one was very well written. If I had any gripes, it was that I felt Auri came across a little weak - I would have preferred a heroine less at the mercy/sway of events and personalities around her and more in charge of her own destiny. However that destiny is complex and confusing to her, and the plot pleasingly complex enough to make their characters intriguing. I disagree completely with some reviewers saying that Auri is 'undefined'. Partly, that's the point. She's only twenty-one in this first part of the series, she's discovering who she is, and mighty forces of inheritance and destiny are coming to bear on her life. She has two very different men vying for her attention and the fate of the world resting on her shoulders. All in a day's work, eh?

All in all, this is a wonderful lead-in to series with great promise. A writer to watch!



View all my reviews

Saturday, July 5, 2014

The Girl who Sang with Whales - Promotion!

Discover why The Girl who Sang with Whales has 11 5-star reviews on Amazon.com! Reduced to 99c until July 11th for a special holiday promotion.

This is how Gabriel Boutros, author of "The Guilty" (4.7 average from 42 reviews on Amazon) puts it:

"The story, of an orphan who is used by those she thought she could trust, and sold into indentured servitude to a harbourmaster far from her home, also could have been written by Dickens.
There are moments of quiet contemplation of Zhisu’s inner, spiritual world, as well as the outer world she inhabits, and both are fully-realized creations. But there are also scenes of political intrigue, violent action and high seas adventure. In the middle of this whirlwind stands Zhisu, struggling to find her inner strengths as well as some sort of meaning to the events which befall her."

A tale for anyone who loves the ocean and its whales, salt water in their hair, and the gentle rasp of beach sand between their bare toes. This story will transport you to a beautiful, unspoiled ocean world where people have to rely on Whales to travel between the islands. A world where danger can, and does, lurk beneath any wave.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

A commitment to quality

There's often noise about Indie authors, but little more so than the reader's fear they are going to pick up a badly written or badly edited book. They fear they're taking a chance or wasting their money. I work with a number of very fine Indie authors. I can't speak for them (but I suspect most endorse the statement below), but I can speak for myself when I say this:

I am committed to producing quality, entertaining books.

I can't guarantee you'll love my style. I can't guarantee you'll be able to put my books down either :-). But what I will say is that I am relentlessly committed to providing a high-quality reading experience for my readers, including editing that strives for perfection, strong writing, unforgettable characters, unique worlds and stories that entertain. I love to grapple with deep issues such as child slavery, race, overcoming obstacles in life, and grief and loss.

This is my commitment to you, dear reader. You are my customer, you are king. Your dollar matters to me. Your reading pleasure matters to me. And I love hearing back from readers. Drop me a line! Put up a review on Amazon or Goodreads and follow me on Twitter!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Enchanted Castle giveaway this weekend

The Enchanted Castle giveaway starts this weekend! Friday 27 through Sunday 29th, FREE in all Amazon stores. Rated 4.7 / 5 stars from 14 reviews on Amazon, this exciting and unique African historical adventure will transport you to ancient Ethiopia, a land of mystery and great natural beauty.

A king bent on conquest.
A murderous warrior tribe,
And the slave-girl who dares to stand between them!

"It was amazingly written and I loved it so much. It's a fantasy for Middle Grade and think anyone out there that owns a child of 8-12 should get this."

"One of the best aspects of this book is the concrete yet dramatic drawing of the gravity of Shioni's situations."

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Exciting new YA Fantasy release - dragons, battles and romance

Aranya Book 1
A unique island-world above the clouds is the setting for this exciting new fantasy release. If mighty dragons, stunning aerial battles and romance are your cup of tea, then this is the book for you.

Pick up a copy on Amazon or enter the giveaway on Goodreads.

Chained to a rock and tossed off a cliff by her boyfriend, Aranya is executed for high treason against the Sylakian Empire. Falling a league into the deadly Cloudlands is not a fate she ever envisaged. But what if she did not die? What if she could spread her wings and fly?