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Is There More? An Exciting Book of Short Stories!

IsThereMore_AmazonNeed something to read this weekend? Something different, exciting and quick? Want a book that will make you rethink the world around you? Then my book of short stories, Is There More? is for you!

Is There More? is a book of 8 short stories. Each story sets you in a world you think you know but once you dive into the tale you realize things are not as they seem. Things feel and look different. The characters and plot make you rethink what you know about everyday things around you.

A set of books that seems  like a pile of pages becomes a group of souls that are calling out for you to read them. If you ignore them what will they do? A simple letter becomes a way to connect through the ages. The idea of resetting a computer takes on a whole new meaning when it is a person you are resetting.

These are just some of the topics and ideas you will get to explore in my book. Is There More? is available in paperback for $6.99 and in e-book for $2.99 on Amazon. Pick it up and explore a new world.

If you enjoy it be sure to leave a review either on Goodreads or on Amazon!

Have a great weekend!!

Aaru – David Meredith – Review

(I was provided a copy of this book by the author in exchange for an honest review. All comments and thoughts are my own).

35649191.jpgAaru is one of those books that you think you understand but by the last page you realize you were wrong. There are two stories here but one is much deeper than the other.

Rose is a 16 year old who is dying of cancer. All the treatments have failed and she is being made comfortable for her last days. As a last ditch effort  to save her, her parents sign Rose up for an experimental new system called Aaru.

Aaru is a computer system that copies and uploads a person’s brain and personality into a computer system. The person is able to live on digitally even though their body has died.

As Rose adjust to her new “life” her sister Koren is finding a way to live a new life of her own. She is made the spokesperson for the new technology but quickly learns what happens when you are forced into the spotlight at a young age. She is thrust into this role that begins to destroy who she is and puts her life and well-being in danger.

What I loved/enjoyed:

Aaru was a beautifully created world. I had no problem imaging this new place. It was vivid and alive. I felt like I was inside this computer program as they built it into a new home. I liked the system even though I didn’t quite understand why some aspects were chosen. Why there were Lords and  Ladies or rankings didn’t quite get adequately explained but that didn’t keep me from sinking into this new world.

I particularly enjoyed the descriptions of what could be done and how things were made and changed. There was one scene in particular where Rose and her friends play a game of soccer that was exciting. I was enraptured by the game and how they used their new home and powers to make it more than just a simple and easy game of soccer.

I also liked the way life, personhood and afterlife were spoken about in this story. Is Rose still Rose without a functioning brain and body? Without the brain to create new pathways and links, can she evolve beyond who she was when she died? Who is she in this new setting?

Also if you become part of this place are you excluded from a traditional afterlife? Can you die again and move on to either Heaven or another place you believe in? What if your family is unable to join you? Is it worth staying in this place then? I liked asking these questions as we read because it put this new technology into a stark and real perspective.

Koren’s story was handled well. I can’t say I “liked” it, because of the way it went but I respected it and its part in the story. Her side of the tale explained how thrusting a child into a spotlight can do irreparable harm to them. Putting them on TV, or in magazines all dressed up can cause people to view them beyond their age. We saw how dangerous this concept can get. It was a good look at the dangers of child celebrity, even if it did disturb me into almost stopping reading at times.

 

What I was was okay with (didn’t love/hate):

I had some trouble with the way accents were written. They felt out of sorts, almost forced. There was only one character who was written with an accent while a number of them were supposed to be foreign. I found his speech difficult to follow at times and it threw me out of the story at times. I don’t know if his speech was needed to be written the way it was.

 

What I was wished was different:

My biggest issues in Aaru was with a handful of decisions that were made. Koren accepts the role as spokesperson without a minute of thought. Her parents never step in and demand a contract. There is no waiting period to think it over, she shakes hands and that is it.

Koren and her parents just trust a company they know next to nothing about. It was hard for me to believe they wouldn’t want details. Even beyond protecting their daughter’s well-being they don’t verify the money or the details of the deal. Her parents don’t even speak up during the exchange and decision process. There was also no later indication that they ever talked the contract over with a lawyer or verified everything that was as they were told it would be.

I also had an issue with the fact that there were cameras throughout the house. I can’t see anyone being okay with that idea right off the bat. Maybe it would have made more sense if there had been a discussion about it. Koren’s parents were intent on gaining the power and money that comes with being celebrities. I think I would have bought the idea more if there had been a scene where they were convinced to allow the cameras to be set up everywhere from the living room the the bedrooms.

Koren doesn’t even seem to know about the cameras. She states multiple times she doesn’t know how they got the footage. Shouldn’t she have at least known they were there? I don’t think it is even slightly legal to set up cameras without the owner’s knowledge and permission. I wanted more discussion about that fact.

I also would have liked more background on Rose and Koren’s parents. The story is about the girls but the parents felt flat. They were almost cliche’s. All her mother talks about it things “happening as they should” or “that is how things are in show business.” Her father falls into drinking, quickly. We have no foundation for them so watching them fall is hard to follow. I wanted to understand them better and why they allowed certain things to happen as they did.

 

This wasn’t something I hated but what I found hard to read. The way the Magic Man’s actions and desires were written were difficult to read. I understood why his storyline was there but I did almost stop reading because of his chapters. The first time he appeared I didn’t know where the story was going and I wasn’t sure I could continue. I did end up finishing and I understood his part but I would say that anyone reading the story should be made aware of the thoughts and actions that may be triggering to some people.

I gave Aaru 4 stars on Goodreads. It wasn’t the story I was expecting but it was well written and did tell a story with an important warning about the dangers of celebrity.

My Book, Is There More?, is a Year Old!!

IsThereMore_AmazonToday is my book’s, Is There More?, birthday! A year ago I self-published my book of short stories.  The stories in this collection are stories that I worked on for a handful of years. Always Been Ours was one that I first wrote in one of my college writing classes. It was the first time someone had read my writing and say it was intriguing. It was one of the first times I thought of the possibility of publishing my writings so that others could read it.

I spent a year compiling the stories in this collection. I edited and rewrote them a number of times. I took them to a writing group and got critiques and opinions about them. I found beta-readers and an editor to make them the best I thought they could be.

And a year ago I compiled them together and put them out as a book. I am still working on marketing and finding ways to get it into more people’s hands. I have enjoyed hearing from those who have read it. I hope to continue to be able to get more people to read and allow more people to think about the vast possibilities that surround our day to day lives.

Here is the summary of it:
The world around us is more vast than we may believe. Look deeper. Push past the veil of reality to find out what truly lies beneath. What you will find looks a lot like the world you see everyday, but a closer look shows you how much more there is to see. It is a world where the books on your shelves have voices, and they are not happy. A world where a person can be reset as easily as a computer. Somewhere you can open your door to find a “Choose Your own Adventure,” book waiting to take complete control of your world. It is a place where you may believe you know what is possible, but looking deeper shows you just how many possibilities truly exist. Turn each page and always ask yourself, is there more?

If you enjoy the Twilight Zone or stories that make you question the world around you, you will enjoy Is There More? It is available through Amazon, either as a paperback for $8.99 or an e-book for $3.99. If you check it out and enjoy it, please leave a review! I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions.

I am very proud of this collection and love nothing more than seeing it on my own bookshelf. As I work on my novel, it is there for me to glance over at  to use as my motivation to keep writing and to keep creating new stories, lands and characters. Happy Birthday, Is There More?

What Are You Reading Wednesday- Ariel Rising

What Are You Reading Wednesday, #WAYRW, is a weekly feature over at It’s a Reading Thing. Want to join in? It is easy, just answer the following three questions about the book you are currently reading!

272376941.) What are you currently reading? – Ariel Rising (Ariel Between Two Worlds Episode One) by: AJ & CS Sparber

2.) Go to page 34 in your book or 34% in your ebook and share a couple of sentences:

Hmm. He’s handsome, witty and personable. How can he not have tons of friends?
Really? You seem very friendly.”
“I was engrossed in my work…my studies. I really didn’t leave myself much time for friends.”

3.) Would you like to live in the world that exists in the book? Why or why not?

The world is very close to ours with the exceptions of aliens hiding amongst us. They are a race that has been around forever and have had a part in everything that has happened in our past. I like the idea of living in a world where there are hidden secrets we are unaware of. So yeah, I’d live in this world where the aliens are hanging out.

Did you know I wrote a book?

IsThereMore_AmazonLooking for something different to read? Something that may remind you of The Twilight Zone? Something that makes you think about the world a little bit differently? Then you will enjoy my self-published,short story collection, Is There More?

The world around us is more vast than we may believe. Look deeper. Push past the veil of reality to find out what truly lies beneath. What you will find looks a lot like the world you see everyday, but a closer look shows you how much more there is to see. It is a world where the books on your shelves have voices, and they are not happy. A world where a person can be reset as easily as a computer. Somewhere you can open your door to find a “Choose Your own Adventure,” book waiting to take complete control of your world. It is a place where you may believe you know what is possible, but looking deeper shows you just how many possibilities truly exist. Turn each page and always ask yourself, is there more?

Sound like something that intrigues you? Then be sure to head over to Amazon to get yourself a copy, available in e-book as well as paperback! http://amzn.to/2auN9nK

It is an easy and quick read but one that is exciting and will hopefully make you think. And if as one reviewer stated you found it to be a, “… real eye-opener and conversation-starter,” then please leave a review.

Thank you!

Is there More?

 

More Happy Than Not By Adam Silvera – Review (Minor Spoilers)

9781616956776More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera was another book I saw a review for on Youtube. The premise intrigued me, someone having the ability to erase memories as a way to deal with a tough situation.  The reviewer also mentioned it was an emotional read, and I was curious to see if that was true. It was true, this book was heartbreaking. I am not a person who gets emotional easily. It takes a lot in a book or movie to make me feel heartbroken, but this book managed just that.

Aaron is a sixteen-year-old whose life is not the greatest. His family is poor. At the beginning, you find out that his father has recently committed suicide. Aaron himself has also has had a suicide attempt.

There is one light in his life though, his girlfriend, Genevieve. They have a very cute relationship. They tease one another and have little rituals. She is what Aaron needs in order to be able to handle what is going on with his life at the moment. She makes him happy and he does love her.

For three weeks in the summer, Genevieve goes to an art camp, leaving Aaron by himself. While she is away Aaron meets a new friend, Thomas. They become close very quickly. Their growing closeness makes Aaron question his sexuality. He realizes that he is falling for Thomas. This creates a cascade of events that has a bigger twist that I won’t reveal here.

The events lead Aaron to consider a new technology at the Leteo Institute that can erase memories. Aaron has to decide whether he should get the procedure, whether it will help him at all. Does erasing your memories really change your life, or does it just cover up an issue you don’t want or know how  to deal with?

The main of the idea this book revolves around the idea of what makes someone gay or straight. Does it have to do with memories? Is it a nature or nurture idea? Can you make someone straight by erasing their past actions and memories?

Now, I believe that being gay, straight or bi is not a choice. It is the way you are born. It is a part of you just like any other aspect of yourself. It is not something that can be changed. It can be ignored and covered up. But like when you dye your hair the roots always show through sooner or later. You can pretend as long as you want, convince yourself that you aren’t but at the end of the day it is a part of you.

This story took an interesting look at that idea. It presents you with a young man who is  trying to navigate his world. He is lost. He has no one to go to talk about what he is feeling. There is no one with experience around him. He tries to navigate his new world but it becomes too overwhelming. He ultimately has to make a choice between erasing his memories and becoming “straight,” or not going through with the procedure and trying to find a way to make people understand who he is. As a teenager, this is a very overwhelming and confusing situation. He has support around him but not much knowledge.

I was on the edge of my seat the whole time I was reading it, praying and hoping things were going to work out for him. I desperately wanted Aaron to end up happy and feel content with who he was. I wanted him to have a revelation about being gay and how it is not something to be ashamed of scared of. But this was no Happy Ever After book. As I stated before this whole thing broke my heart.

I just wanted to be the support system that Aaron needed. I wanted him to be able to get away from the negativity in his life, to find somewhere where he was accepted but that would have made the book too neat. Everything working out perfectly, all his friends accepting him and understanding would have been too easy. This was much more like real life. I think that if everything had worked out with a smile, I would have felt cheated and annoyed. This isn’t a situation that is fixed with a few words and a handshake or hug. It takes time and it is a process and Silvera portrayed that well.

If you like science-fiction with heart you will enjoy this book. Don’t expect a light uplifting read, though. Expect a story that goes deep into your heart and will stay there leaving a lasting effect on you.

Need Something to Read This Weekend?

IsThereMore_AmazonLooking for a quick, fun and interesting read this weekend? Why not check out my book Is There More?  A short story collection with eight stories that will make you re-think the world around you. Stories that give you a different way to look at love, the books on your shelves, dating apps and more.

As one reviewer on Amazon stated: “I wasn’t sure what to expect at first… In her forward, Brittney Rz explains that she is interested in writing stories that leave her readers wondering “what else is possible.” But after my husband and I finished reading the book, I found we had often experienced the stories differently. It was a real eye-opener and conversation-starter. Very nice piece of work. Quick, easy read. Highly recommended.”

Summary: The world around us is more vast than we may believe. Look deeper. Push past the veil of reality to find out what truly lies beneath. What you will find looks a lot like the world you see everyday, but a closer look shows you how much more there is to see. It is a world where the books on your shelves have voices, and they are not happy. A world where a person can be reset as easily as a computer. Somewhere you can open your door to find a “Choose Your own Adventure,” book waiting to take complete control of your world. It is a place where you may believe you know what is possible, but looking deeper shows you just how many possibilities truly exist. Turn each page and always ask yourself, is there more?

Available through Amazon in paperback as well as e-book. Check it out!

P.S. And if you enjoy it a review would be much appreciated!

Virtual Book Fair Haul (Part 1)

IMG_1996Back at the end of February and beginning of March I particpated in a virtual book fair on Facebook. While I did not get any new sales, the exposure was great. I also found some great books as well and am very excited to read them.

(These are just four of the books that I wanted from the fair. I like physical copies of books and that can get expensive. I created an Amazon wishlist of the number of other books that I want and will be buying them little at a time. I will do a post  each time I get the new ones).


27237694Ariel Rising
– AJ & CS Sparber

This one was on my wishlist but I actually ended up winning it in one of the giveaways that took place during the fair. (Interestinly enough, though the fair was open to authors from anywhere, these authors actually live about half an hour from me. Talk about small world!)

Synposis from Amazon:

“My dreams were simple. College, a career, and let’s see what happens from there. But things don’t always go according to plan.

My name is Ari Worthington and I’ve had a very eventful week. A life-changing week. The kind of week that would make the average person whimper.

It started when my ex-boyfriend Luke accosted me in the woods.

How badly was I injured? Not a scratch. And Luke? Not so lucky. Nope, I whupped him good. It surprised the heck out of me. And it probably surprised him, too—once he woke up.

And then I met Davin. Handsome, witty, amazing Davin. Perfect in every way, unless you think being an alien, from a planet called Olympus, might be a liability.

“Seriously? Your planet is named after a Greek mountain?” I ask him.

“Actually, it’s the other way around,” he tells me. “The mountain was named after us. We’ve been visiting Earth for a very, very long time. As a matter of fact, we are responsible for human evolution.”

So, ancient aliens are real? Yeah. But there’s more. Davin’s an angel, which I could have handled, would have handled, if only he hadn’t told me I was one, too.

“But we don’t have wings,” I say.

“Real angels don’t need wings,” he counters.

“Ah, that explains everything,” I reply.

So, you think this is just another angel story? Well, it’s not. It’s got humor, romance, adventure, science, tragedy, and… did I say romance? It’ll make you think, and laugh, and cry.

Davin and I, you see, are part of a larger plan. A noble plan. A plan to save the sons and daughters of man, or what’s left of them, after the war. A big war.

Okay, enough of my rambling. Davin and I need to get back to training. And you’ve got some reading to do, yeah?”

The voice of this summary is what drew me to this book. I like the way the speaker is speaking to us as a reader. This intriqued me and makes me want to read to see where this story is going to go.

Purchase link: Buy Here

41g9iQyYFxL._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_The Veiled Soul – Abbie Chandler.

This book was actuall written by the organzier of the fair. Who also has a blog here, The Little Book Nook.

Summary from Amazon:

As punishment for her past sins, Lia has served for hundreds of years as a reaper. Stripped of her soul and her memories, she exists in the reaper realm, unable to touch anything real. When the reap for a young girl’s soul goes terribly wrong, and a human killer can inexplicably see and harm her, Lia is ripped out of the reaper realm and given a second chance at life. As she forges new relationships and learns what it means to live, she regains the memories of her past, and nothing can prepare her for the damage she’s done. Old habits die hard, and Lia fights to resist the overwhelming urge to take another life. But there is an evil that lurks in the shadows. And he’ll do anything to make sure she embraces her past. The body count is rising, and Lia must make the final decision between who lives and who dies.”

I love the idea of a story about a reaper and this interesting idea of reincarnation. I think this will be an interesting story about the tug between good and evil.

Purchase link:Buy Here

51xWxGq8dsL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_B is for Broken – Edited by Rhonda Parrish

Summary from Amazon:

“Broken people, broken promises, broken dreams and broken objects are just some of the ways these 26 fantastic stories interpret the theme of ‘Broken’. From science fiction to fantasy, horror to superheroes the stories within these pages cover a vast swath of the genres under the speculative fiction umbrella. Contributing writers are: ~ Brittany Warman ~ Milo James Fowler ~ C.S. MacCath ~ Sara Cleto ~ Samantha Kymmell-Harvey ~ Megan Arkenberg ~ Gary B. Phillips ~ Alexandra Seidel ~ Jonathan C. Parrish ~ Simon Kewin ~ Beth Cato ~ Cory Cone ~ Cindy James ~ Alexis A. Hunter ~ Michael M. Jones ~ Steve Bornstein ~ BD Wilson ~ Michael Kellar ~ Damien Angelica Walters ~ Marge Simon ~ Michael Fosburg ~ Suzanne van Rooyen ~ L.S. Johnson ~ Pete Aldin ~ Gabrielle Harbowy ~ Lilah Wild ~ KV Taylor ~”

I love short story collections. I liked the theme of this collection. I am curious how many different ways broken can be interpereted.

Purchase link:Buy Here

41fsTkmTOaL._AC_UL320_SR208,320_Apocalypse Wow – Ben Mariner

Summary from Amazon:

“Jack Winters is in a bit of a pickle. Things started out just fine. He had a decent job and a few friends. Then he met the woman of his dreams. They go out on a date and things go really well. That’s when things go south. The morning after turns out to be a week later and the world went ahead and ended itself while Jack was far away in dreamland. Now he’s awake in a post-apocalyptic world with no family, no job, and worst of all, no girlfriend. Along with his friends and some other random tag-alongs, Jack will journey cross country to find the woman of his dreams against zombies, heavy metal horsemen, pirates, and a power so immense and evil it will put his very soul to the test.”

I love apocalyptic novels. This one seems like a humerous take on the idea which will be a welcome respite from the dreary ones I have been seeing and reading.

Purchase link:Buy Here

These are all by indie authors and any support is always nice and appreciated. I will be posting reviews of each of these after I have read them.

IsThereMore_AmazonAlso if you are looking for something else to read my books also available on Amazon. Print $8.99 and ebook is $3.99.  Get Is There More? Here

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles) Review

9780141340135I have been putting off reading this series for a long time. I kept hearing about it through blogs and Booktubers but it hadn’t been finished yet. I have read too many series with disappointing endings that I was afraid this would fit that bill. But then the last book came out and all I heard was positive reviews about the way the series ends. So, I finally picked up the first book and I had trouble putting it down.

Cinder (first int the series) is a sci-fi retelling of Cinderella. Cinder is a cyborg who lives in a future society. She can’t remember any of her life before the age of eleven when she was made into a cyborg. She lives with her harsh and cruel stepmother and two stepsisters. One stepsister is actually very nice and loving towards Cinder. While the other is just as mean and cruel as her stepmother.

Cinder is a well-known mechanic and one day the prince (soon to be emperor) Kai comes to her to fix one of his androids. This one meeting changes everything about Cinder’s life. She learns about her past and gets caught up in an intergalactic problem that involves the Lunars, the people who live on the moon.

The story is fast paced, there is very little downtime between events. The characters are lively and relatable.

I loved Cinder’s character. She has a sarcastic attitude which is one of my favorite character types. Cinder has not had an easy life. She believes that her parents were killed in a crash that injured her so badly she had to become a cyborg. She has been an outcast her whole life. No one wants to be around her because of her cyborg nature. She is seen as less than human, which influences her view of herself.

I wrote a post about storylines that drive me nuts, one of those being a character hiding a part of themselves from someone else because they are afraid of what will happen if they tell their secret. Usually, this storyline makes little sense and makes the character holding the secret weaker as well as the other person. But in this story it was different and I didn’t hate how it was used.

Cinder is afraid to tell Kai that she is a cyborg. All her life people have looked down on her because of this condition that she had no control over. She did not choose to become a cyborg, that was a choice made for her. No one respects her. She is seen as less than human. So her holding onto that secret makes sense. This is how she views herself. She doesn’t see herself as worthy of affection or respect. She doesn’t understand Kai’s kindness towards her. She is sure that once he learns who she is, he will run. For this story, this all makes sense. I wanted her to tell Kai everything but I understood why she didn’t.

Both Kai and Cinder are thrown into an adult life. Both have to grow up fast. Kai has to rule his people, keep them safe and try to find a cure for a plague that is destroying their lives. Cinder is thrown into a new life that she isn’t sure how to navigate.

I liked the way both of the characters were written. They don’t become rational adults right away. They have to make some huge decisions that they shouldn’t have to make at their age, but at the same time, they hold onto a youthful view of the world. Kai and Cinder both hold onto a youthful naivety about the way their lives are and should be.

Their story doesn’t wrap up neatly in this book. Everything is left hanging and I loved that. I was worried that they would finish up their story, and only be side characters in the rest of the series with no more real growth or extension of their story. But that doesn’t happen. We are left wondering what will not only happen in their lives but between the two of them. It made me go right out and buy the next book. I am eager to see how not only does the story progress but what is in store for Cinder and Kai’s characters throughout the rest of the series.

Is There More?- A short story collection on sale now!!

IsThereMore_AmazonFor a while now I have been absent from this blog and the blogging world. That is because I have been hard at work finalizing the last details of my book!! I am very excited to announce that after over a year of hard work my short story collection, Is There More? is officially available for sale.
It is a collection of stories that I have been working on for years and am very proud of. They are stories set in our modern day world but with a slight twist that makes them seem unreal yet possible at the same time. The idea of the collection is to make you think and reconsider the world around you.
Here is the blurb that appears on the back and as the summary for the collection:
             The world around us is more vast then we may believe. Look deeper. Push past the veil of reality to find out what truly lies beneath. What you will find looks a lot like the world you see everyday, but a closer look shows you how much more there is to see. It is a world where the books on your shelves have voices, and they are not happy. A world where a person can be reset as easily as a computer. Somewhere you can open your door to find a “Choose Your own Adventure,” book waiting to take complete control of your world. It is a place where you may believe you know what is possible, but looking deeper shows you just how many possibilities truly exist. Turn each page and always ask yourself, is there more?

If you enjoy fantasy stories or stories with a slight twist you will enjoy these. It is available in both e-book version as well as paperback. The e-book is $3.99 and the paperback is $8.99. Check it out on Amazon!

Also be sure to add it to your shelves on GoodReads!

Is there More?

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These are fun stories that will hopefully make you think a bit. I hope you enjoy. If you do pick it up and enjoy, mind leaving a review as well? Thank you!!