Monday, October 18, 2021

Preptober 2021 | Week #3

 


Another year down in the books, and NaNoWriMo is creeping back up! This Preptober is starting later than usual because life has been a whirlwind. I started a new job this year, I am also going back to school for yet another Master's degree (will update about my MFA), and the usual life roles of being a mom, wife, and friend. 

This Preptober will really be outlining different story ideas that have been in the back of my mind. I don't have a set idea of exactly what to do but I have a few story ideas. This year I feel like I am going to be a Pantser to the max, and as a Planner that doesn't sit right with me. However, life is kicking this writer's booty. I will write out in my newest notebook some ideas but I may definitely just be typing away. 

Do you have any ideas this year or will you too be a Pantser?

Friday, October 1, 2021

Book Review: A Wish Too Dark And Kind by M.L. Blackbird

 


A Wish Too Dark And Kind by M.L. Blackbird

Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

Synopsis: Among the immortals that inhabit our world, Arnaud Demeure is known as the man who can fulfill your one true wish or who can also conjure your worst nightmares.

Eight invitations are sent to eight immortals, and when Arnaud Demeure hosts a party, no one refuses his request. Why have they been summoned? Is it for a celebration or does a sinister fate await them? After all, in the ways of magick, a party can also be a ritual to end the world.

As the mystery deepens, the attendees must overcome their personal grudges to unravel the threads of Demeure's grand plan that has been centuries in the making. But, with one of the guests secretly working with their host to sabotage the group's every move, it seems impossible to look behind the curtain to learn Demeure's true intentions.

With each guest hiding dark secrets and darker intentions, will they be able to uncover Demeure's mysterious motives or will the party prove to be the deadly nightmare that they each fear?


What a synopsis, huh? As soon as I read it, I knew I had to read it. Just in time for spooky season aka Halloween. The book starts off ... interestingly and took me a moment to know what was going on before we switched characters. We are introduced to Alexandra, or Alex, who works at the School of Winchester (Is this a Supernatural reference? I hope). My feelings towards her were conflicting. I mean, she is a boss-ass chick but sis is also rude, but it could just be her ego. She's practically immortal. Then we meet Millard and Hermann, and there are mentions of dreams and Paris. Then we meet Daniel, and if you are not catching on, we are going to keep meeting new characters. 


That was one of the things that stopped this from being a 5 in my book. Almost the first 75 pages are introductions to these characters. They are getting invited to this event by Arnaud Demeure who we still kind of don't know. We get tidbits from his letters but not enough, and it frustrated me a bit because I wanted to know more sooner. 


Another aspect of this book that stopped it from getting a 5 was the back and forth between timelines. Personally, I am not a fan of them. One moment you're getting to the nitty-gritty with a storyline, but then you are pulled out with the other. Once I got pulled out, I was reminded I was reading a book and not getting lost in the story. Which this book does set up to be fantastical.


Finally, I feel like the book could have been edited more. What I mean by that is, some chunks I would remove. Have us start at the party, then learn more about the characters through conversations. Something to move it along quickly. As I mentioned, we spend almost a 1/4 of it just getting background.


However, Blackbird makes up for it in the second half of the book when we are all caught up to the party. These characters all with a connection in one way or another realize something is amidst. Having characters like Alexandra and Ioan helped me looked for clues. Daniel, oh sweet Daniel, was a good stand-in for the reader as he is learning just as we are. 


Another thing Blackbird has done well was building this magick system and world up. It's a world you want to get lost in and explore more. His description paints a vivid picture and you feel as if you are part of this world. While it is complex I think the beauty lies in that. You can tell that a lot of hard work went into building it, as it practically leaps off the pages. However, some descriptions may make you shiver but dammit it's so freaking good.  


As a murder mystery fan (I'm serious, that's what I am doing for my birthday) I was excited to get to the party. I wanted to Clue it up with the best of them, and figure out what the hell is going and why this party? Blackbird does a great job at that suspense and the whirlwinds of mystery that you just have to give it an A+. 


So it gets a 3.5, and I do want to say to Blackbird. You have a story with the School of Winchester! Alex, and whatever the hell is going on there needs its own book. I would love to read that story


Overall great book, with wonderful graphics here and there. If you are into gothic, mysteries, and/or the fantastical world check this book out! I do warn it's a dark story, and happy endings, ain't happening in this novel. However, if you want to feel chills and see morally grey charters curl up with a book just in time for All Hallows Eve. 


This book will be available in November 2021. 


I received this ARC in exchange for a review.

Monday, August 23, 2021

Book Review: Azygos (Tiber Series Book 1) by J.H. White


Azygos (Tiber Series Book 1) by J.H. White

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Synopsis: With two distinct paths, Azygos follows Marlowe's and Sloan's interweaving stories. Sloan and his family have been tracking his mother's killer for as long as he can remember. As time passes with no answers or closure, the resentment and hatred in his family grow to a breaking point. Marlowe and her family must return home to Portland after she recklessly commits a grave mistake while hunting. Her guilt and their judgment only intensify, but upon a chance meeting between the two, things begin to change. Finding comfort and warmth within each other, they forge a connection. But as people are murdered and secrets are told, their bond agonizingly twists towards its final challenge. With their lives colliding, the solace they find within each other may only be a disguise for their darkest nightmares.


If that synopsis doesn't throw you for a ride my review will! As the synopsis states, we follow two distinct paths in Marlowe and Sloan. Now, this will be a spoiler-free review but I think a fair warning should be given. So tighten those seatbelts, ladies, and gentlemen. The first person we are introduced to is Marlowe, and just by a few descriptions I already know she's a tough character with an exterior that may be hard to breakthrough. A contrast to her friend Lydia, who is bubbly and a bright light in Marlowe's life. I already love this friendship. They run into two gentlemen and shit gets real, real fucking fast. I might have to charge J.H. for a chiropractic appointment because the whiplash was real. The action just pulls you in and you have to just keep clicking through to find out what's next.


While Marlowe is cool, calm, and collected we meet Sloan later on. Dude is totally not any of those things. He is the epitome of tension, rigid and fear. His brothers are on the other hand are a bit more put together. He probably in my opinion connect with his sister the best. (AKA Jess deserves better) On top of it, his father tasks him with something that is life-altering. It's too big of a spoiler to reveal but ... all I have to say is shit, and Sloan deserved better. I have to say I wouldn't have been able to do it.  


By the way, these are just the first two chapters of the book! I told you to buckle in. Overall White does a great job at giving each character their time to shine, and their personalities complement one another. Additionally, I am a sucker for a good description, and White paints a beautiful picture. You instantly pulled into this novel and join these two adventures without putting it down. My fave thing about the novel is when Marlowe and Sloan meet. Their conversations about movies and a topic that spoils the book is funny to me. They both have opinions not knowing the real truth behind their words. 


So what stopped this from being a 5 in my book? We spend more than half the book in two separate worlds. I loved it but I wanted to connect more to the relationship with Marlowe and Sloan. I think I would have enjoyed the meeting happening earlier. The plot twist was something I figured would happen and it definitely set things in motion. Finally, the ending felt a bit rushed, but I personally believe it's because we didn't get enough time with Marlowe/Sloan's relationship. It just would have hit different if the relationship was fleshed out more. 


Overall it was an amazing book and it is part of a series. So more to come and I cannot wait! Grab this book if you want something short, dark, and full of the supernatural. 


I recommend this for 14+ for some mentions of sexual relationships. You can purchase the book on Amazon or Barnes & Noble in October 2021!


I received this ARC in exchange for a review.

Friday, July 16, 2021

Book Review: Heart & Spears by Somto Jefferson Uwazie

 


Heart & Spears by Somto Jefferson Uwazie

Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

The first thing that comes to mind as I think of Heart & Spades is its rawness and realness. This book of poems touches on subjects that many would shy away from but not Uwazie. The book breaks into four different sections, Anger and Grief, Women, Nature, and Happiness. Each section honing in on its critical meaning. Some of my favorite poems were in the Women section and I believe the strongest pieces. My personal favorite was "Unshackled". The subjects in this book touch on things that can make a reader uncomfortable. There is talk of racism, war, the current pandemic, and mental illness. Even each piece ends with a quote either famous or by the author himself. It was indeed a thought-provoking piece that can lead to deep conversations. One of the best things about the piece is Uwazie's voice. His reflection of modern times based on his background is well-informed and eye-opening. Those aspects cannot be replicated nor could they be more authentic. So why is it not 5 stars? Three reasons! One the actual formatting of the work was a bit difficult to get through. It could be just the way it was sent to me but it made some of the poems lose their flow. Another is simply the length of the book itself. Almost at 200 pages, the piece is lengthy and drags on a bit. Cutting this down to maybe into two books would be beneficial. Lastly, subject topics! While the book is beautiful there were no warnings about pieces of violence and sexual assaults. Some subjects touched on religious ideas that some may not agree with. Bits like this could be nitpicky could essentially turn a reader away. Do I recommend this book? Yeah, I do. Who do I recommend it for? Adults at least over the age of 18. Also, individuals who are willing to be open-minded and read about raw life and struggles. I would definitely warn there are mentions of sexual abuse, abuse, politics, religion, and war. If those topics you are willing to be open to, go get this book today!


The book could be purchased here on Amazon. 


I received this ARC in exchange for a review.

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Camp NaNoWriMo 2021 - Week 1


Week 1

Just this week I wrote 8,330 words for Project G/Season 4! It has been awhile since I felt this inspired on a fic! I had given up on this fic a month ago but the rush for it came back full force. I had planned 30K for July but I can see myself reaching more than that! Fingers crossed! 

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Happy 8th Birthday Inksoaked Page

 


Happy 8th Birthday Inksoaked Page! Another year down in the books and we have expanded well into Instagram and Twitter. This was a year of growth and I am ever so proud of this little blog! Fun Fact: This may be my last year running this blog as I am expanding into a different blog, one more on me, my writing journey and hopefully my world into publishing. 

We are half way done with 2021 and all I have to say is take the rest of the year to grow. I hope that in December 2021, I have accomplished more of my goals both writing and personal! 

Happy Writings! 

Friday, June 4, 2021

JuNoWriMo & Camp NaNoWriMo Updates


Credit to JuNoWriMo


This week I learned about JuNoWriMo from a fellow author friend Naley G. It follows the same format as NaNoWriMo, and I thought it would be the perfect time to start my latest novel. In November 2020, I wrote a novel that I thought was going to be the one. You know the one I would query and maybe get an agent. Flash forward, and it is not the one. For some reason, I hate the story. Okay, that might be a little tough. Honestly, I know what is wrong with the story but instead of revising it; I took bits and pieces of it for a brand new novel

Am I crazy? Yes! Will I accomplish a new novel in a mere few weeks? Hell no! 

I have some important dates coming up, one of my best friend’s weddings, one of my best friend’s major birthdays, father’s day, end of the school year for my daughter. Your girl has a lot going on, a lot! So I spanned my novel into July’s Camp NaNoWriMo and split it between these next two months. 

In July, my schedule will allow me more time to dedicate to my novel but also take some breaks from it! It is good to step back and look at what you are working on. These next few weeks will be packed but fun, and I am going to document it via video! Maybe I will get the courage and start my Authortube channel? We will see. 

You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.

 

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