F&F 11: Blogging Tip, Don’t get too attached

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Feature and Follow #11

This meme is brought to you by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read.  Congrats to the featured blogs for this week Thoughts and Pens and No Bent Spines.

For this meme, you can follow me however you’d like.  Whatever makes you come back a second time!  Leave a comment and I’ll be sure to follow you back.

Share something you’ve learned about book blogging or just blogging in general in the last month.

Don’t get too attached.

  • to the authors whose books you review
  • to the reviews you write
  • to social media and blogging communities
  • to your blog
  • to the drama on Goodreads/Amazon

To the authors whose books your review:  The more friendly you are with authors, the harder it will be to remain non-bias in your reviews.  Are you really saying that the book was the best thing since Harry Potter or do you just not want to hurt that nice author’s feelings?  Don’t jeopardize your integrity because you’re afraid of feelings getting hurt.  If you think you’re too close to an author to write a review of a book objectively, then don’t do it.  If you read a book by an author you like, but you don’t like it, there are ONLY two good options.  1) Don’t write the review.  2)  Write the damn one-star review.

There are times where I read a book that someone else recommends and I’m like “WTF kind of medication was she on when reading this?  IS THIS EVEN ENGLISH?”  Firstly, if there are grammar issues…there’s no way you can rate the book 5 stars.  I don’t care if it’s your sister.  If people can’t trust your reviews to be accurate, then no one will want to read your reviews.

To the reviews you write:  There will come times where people will think your opinion is crap.  It may be the author.  It might be other reviewers.  It might be some random hobo who just happened to be browsing Amazon.  Your review will be criticised and dissected.  You could potentially look and/or feel like an idiot when you read the comments on your review.  The best thing for you to do is DISTANCE yourself from responding until you can answer without being emotionally estranged.

  1. Figure out if there are errors in your review or if some moron is trolling you.
  2. If you’re not wrong, find evidence in the book to support your review.
  3. If you’re wrong, fix it!  

If you approach the situation logically and not emotionally, then you will come off as the better person.  Crying on twitter or accusing the other person of harassment only makes you look like you’re attention-seeking and looking for drama.  Let SOMEONE ELSE point out the obvious.

To the events unfolding on social media:  Don’t try to answer every tweet or like every Facebook status that pops up in your feed.  It’s okay to have a life outside of the internet.  I used to always feel guilty that I wasn’t participating enough in the community.  But, it’s okay to miss out on #authorevents on Twitter.  It’s okay to not respond to that email within five minutes.  It’s okay if you don’t retweet every single post on Tribbr.  It’s okay to have a life outside of blogging.

To your blog:  You have my permission to not post every day.  You know what?  How about tomorrow we both take the day off from blogging and go yard-sailing.  We can go hunt for some bargain books and bookshelves.  Sound good?  Don’t worry, there is no blogging police that will email publishers and say, “Don’t give so-and-so this ARC because she didn’t post on last Thursday.  There were exactly 26 hours between posts.”

To the drama on Goodreads and Amazon:  There is a war between authors/reviewers.  And you know what?  I don’t give a flying fuck.  It’s a handful of people on both sides who can’t separate the internet from real life.  It doesn’t really matter if someone did call you a wet diaper on Goodreads.  If they do it to your face, well, then I have a fresh, wet, stinky diaper you can slug them with.

 

So, why is it so important not to get too attached?

Because the reason YOU started a book review blog was because you love BOOKS.  Don’t let the hobby ruin your passion for books.

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Feature and Follow: Accomplishments

I don’t normally participate in feature and follow, but I HAD to because I love this week’s question.  This week’s featured blogs are Book Liaison and Angela’s Anxious Life.

Q: What do you hope to accomplish with your blog? Is it to one day become an author yourself, just for fun, maybe get some online attention, or maybe something very different?

I do wish to one day become an author myself, but that isn’t what drives me to post every day and read 4-5 books a week.  I’m a huge fan of dark fiction and horror.  It is severely under-represented in the market and on blogs.  Most of the blogs I see like books that are YA with HEA.  I don’t like guaranteed happily ever after endings.  I don’t like books where romance is the only plot-line.  I’m not one of those bloggers who becomes a super-fan of some book guy because he’s “hot”.  I like books with a fast pace, lots of drama, flawed heroes, a couple gory deaths, and a bittersweet ending.

Maybe I’m being selfish with promoting the genres and books that I do.  I write YA horror.  I know that the only way to get better with my writing is to read YA horror – and it’s probably the most difficult genre to find in the bookstore (read: Anna Dressed in Blood is the only book).  I would love to only cover this genre on my blog, but I simply can’t find the books.  I hope that within the next few years that YA horror becomes more popular.  Until then, if my blog can help find and promote the books that do exist (and I get a chance to read), I’m satisfied.

If you have any recommendations for this genre, I’ll be happy to check them out!  If you have a blog, what do you hope to accomplish?

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Suzanne Young Giveaway: A Need So Beautiful; A Want So Wicked

Some books I get on sale, some for reviewing, some I pick up after reading great reviews, but A Need So Beautiful was bought under very unique circumstances.  I was browsing the local bookstores online and I saw that YA author Suzanne Young would be book signing this week.  So, spur of the moment…I order her books online this weekend, received them on Wednesday afternoon, devoured A Need So Beautiful by Thursday, and decided I needed to show up to the signing mere hours before the event.

Of course, the short term decision had some consequences.  I had to tote my toddler with me, because the hubby had other plans set tonight.  I think bringing the little one did guarantee that Suzanne Young would remember me out of all the people that showed up.  After all, how many fans have a child obsessed with playing with the electrical socket next to the signing desk?  Just this one!  And he didn’t understand why he wasn’t allowed to pull all the books off the bookshelves or crawl across the room and suck on some random person’s drink – Hey, mom….it has a STRAW!

During the event, Suzanne read an excerpt from her book The Program, which will be released April 13th.  And yes, there is a sequel in development.

The Program blurb:

Sloane knows better than to cry in front of anyone.

With suicide now an international epidemic, one outburst could land her in The Program, the only proven course of treatment. Sloane’s parents have already lost one child; Sloane knows they’ll do anything to keep her alive. She also knows that everyone who’s been through The Program returns as a blank slate. Because their depression is gone—but so are their memories.

Under constant surveillance at home and at school, Sloane puts on a brave face and keeps her feelings buried as deep as she can. The only person Sloane can be herself with is James. He’s promised to keep them both safe and out of treatment, and Sloane knows their love is strong enough to withstand anything. But despite the promises they made to each other, it’s getting harder to hide the truth. They are both growing weaker. Depression is setting in.

And The Program is coming for them.

I was a little too flustered to get any pictures of the event, but I did get my readers something special.  Signed copies of both books in the series.  Available to one lucky US resident only…shipping is too expensive elsewhere.  Oh, and a couple of bookmarks too!  Yay!

Once I finish both books, I’ll write up a review.  But the first one is definitely part of my top 3 reads this summer.

Click to head to the Rafflecopter.  

Be sure to follow me on Linky or WordPress before you head over.

You can purchase A Need So Beautiful from Amazon or Barnes & Noble.  You can purchase A Want So Wicked from Amazon or Barnes & Noble.  Both book are available in ebook.  A Want so Wicked is available in hardcover.

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Twitter Thursday #2

Twitter Thursday is dedicated to all my twitter followers.  To get nominated for a spot on Twitter Thursday all you need to do is follow me on Twitter at @lizzylessard and use your twitter account on Thursday!  That’s it.  Different followers each week.  Five random followers were chosen this week:

Becky Paulk @ Book Bite Reviews

Becky Paulk is a book review blogger for the YA Paranormal Genre.  On her most recent tweet, she added Pitch by Jullian Eaten to her to-be-considered for review pile on Goodreads.

Emily @ Confessions of a Bookaholic

Confessions Of A Bookaholic

Emily is a book review blogger for YA, Dystopian, and Paranormal Romance Genres.  On her most recent tweet, she said #WeHaveSimon #WeWantAlec, which I’m assuming refers to the cast of the Mortal Instrument movie in development.

Laurie Jenkins @ Laurie’s Paranormal Thoughts and Reviews

Laurie is a book review blogger for the Paranormal Genre.  Her most recent tweets are about giveaways on her site.  Check them out!

Kristen Holbrook

Kristen Holbrook is a reader, writer, and artist, who apparently is addicted to video games too.  I know how that is.  My personal FOTM is League of Legends.  On her most recent tweet, she’s written nine pages in her notebook.  Yay!  Keep writing, girl!

Bryan Johnson @ Author of Yield (Book 1 in the Armageddi Series)

Releasing August 14, 2012, Yield is Bryan Johnson’s debut novel.  You can preorder it from on paperback  from Amazon or Barnes & Noble.  Ebook purchases can be made from the author’s website.  On his most recent tweet, he was contemplating whether to market or work on the sequel.  Sequel in my opinion.

Ex-fire chief Devin Bane rises above the thick clouds for an interview in Seattle and the promise of a better life. Packing up his carry-on items for their descent into the city, Devin is blinded by a distant flash, followed by the screams and chaos of a crash landing.

Outside the plane’s wreckage, a new nightmare surrounds him. Seattle’s iconic skyline is gone.

Searching for answers as he flees through the ruins, Devin and a handful of survivors are surrounded by the most primitive side of human nature. Plunged into the darkness of a broken society, their tattered souls are each tested by the horrors they face. Even if Devin can escape the city, a far worse danger now blocks his path back home . . .

Back to his family and the dawning of a changed world.

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Book Review: The Glimpse by Claire Merle

The Glimpse by Claire Merle

Publisher:  Faber and Faber Children’s Books

Available in ebook or paperback.

If you’re easily offended by use of stereotypes and torture of small children, I’d advise you not to check out this book.  Some of the characters in this book are very close-minded.  Such as Ana’s father, who will do everything in his power to make sure his family does not develop mental illness.  In his mind, it is a disease and harmful to society.

The only way to treat this disease is to over-medicate the person until they become a zombie in both emotions and senses.  Children like Ana are raised to fear mental illness and when Ana is diagnosed as being a carrier for mental illness, she loses all self-image and feels like she is a disease.  Her bonding partner, Jasper, keeps postponing their arranged marriage and Ana blames it on her being a carrier.  Everything that goes wrong she blames on herself.  She feels like she has no control and she’s forced to withhold all emotions and “crazy” actions in fear that these things will trigger the illness.

And then Jasper is kidnapped.  Ana decides to find out what happened to him by leaving the safety of her community and enters the world of the crazy people.  There she discovers how normal some of the “crazy” people are and that people like her father are the real enemy.

Or are they?  Maybe the Crazies are crazy (go figure) and are feeding Ana delusions.  The author leads you back and forth in what to believe and it’s fairly convincing.  I like how each side truly believed in their position on whether or not the segregation and classification then medication process was fair and just.  I enjoy novels where I can’t decide whether or not the narrator is truly in the right mind.

Now the horror lover in me was super psyched when Ana and many of her teenage friends were repeatedly tortured in very explicit ways.  If you enjoy light reads, move along.  If you prefer the dark and twisted novels, this one is for you.  I not-so-secretly enjoyed the scenes where the “Crazies” patients were put into tanks, it was slowly filled up with water, and then sometimes the doctors stretched the time-allotted a little too long and there would be a drowning.

So why when I adored this book so much did I not give it five stars or an A?  The ending sucked.  There was so much buildup during the novel and almost none of it was resolved by the end.  I hate cliffhangers.  I felt like tossing this book off a cliff when I finished, but since I read it on my Kindle, I refrained.  Plus, I didn’t feel like driving across town to find a cliff.  That said, I hope there is a sequel.  There better be a sequel.  I want to know what happens next to Ana, Cole, Jasper, and the rest of the gang.

Characters 4/5

Concept 5/5

Pacing 3/5

Grammar 5/5

Ending 1/5

Summary:

In a near future, society is segregated according to whether people are genetically disposed to mental illness. 17-year-old Ana has been living the privileged life of a Pure due to an error in her DNA test. When the authorities find out, she faces banishment from her safe Community, a fate only thwarted by the fact that she has already been promised to Pure-boy Jasper Taurell.

Jasper is from a rich and influential family and despite Ana’s condition, wants to be with her. The authorities grant Ana a tentative reprieve. If she is joined to Jasper before her 18th birthday, she may stay in the Community until her illness manifests. But if Jasper changes his mind, she will be cast out among the Crazies. As Ana’s joining ceremony and her birthday loom closer, she dares to hope she will be saved from the horror of the City and live a ‘normal’ life. But then Jasper disappears.

Led to believe Jasper has been taken by a strange sect the authorities will not intefere with, Ana sneaks out of her well-guarded Community to find him herself. Her search takes her through the underbelly of society and into the pits of the human soul. And as she delves deeper into the mystery of Jasper’s abduction she uncovers some devastating truths that destroy everything she has grown up to believe, but she also learns to love as she has never loved before.

Grade: B

This book will appeal to fans of Hunger Games and other dystopian or YA novels.

If you’re interested in purchasing this book, you can buy it from Amazon.  You can check out more reviews at Goodreads.

I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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