Tau Solarin & Kobe Bryant

The Rage of Dragons by Evan Winter

Last month the world lost a great athlete, Kobe Bryant, and we mourned a man who worked so hard to achieve all that he could in basketball. When I listened to Rage of Dragons by Evan Winter and got to know Tau Solarin – my first impression of the protagonist was that he reminded me of Kobe. In a world were one is born to a caste called Lessers and taught from birth that noble men are better than you could ever be, Tau Solarin rose from his station with blood, sweat and tears.

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A Better Storyteller: Reforming the Pantser

Story Genius by Lisa Cron

In 2020 I resolve to be a better storyteller. A lot of writers I admire say that there is nothing wrong with being a pantser – a write-by-the-seat-of-your-pants type of author. But it’s not working for me, my story is not as clear cut and I always have problems writing the ending. I tried outlining, but it limited me (cue that Wicked song). My story did not want to go in the direction the outline directed. So, I picked up Lisa Cron’s Story Genius: How to Use Brain Science to Go Beyond Outlining and Write a Riveting Novel – it sounds like one of my User Experience books. And it actually is.

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24 Haikus for Christmas

My love letters make my husband cry. He has forbidden me from writing them. My beloved often stares at my printed works in progress and complains that they are too long. A famous poet inspired me to write haikus as love letters to my forever mate. I have read these to him and he has rewarded me with joy and delight. I wanted to share them with you.

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The Perfect Antagonist

The conclusion to Brent WeeksLightbringer Series produced the perfect antagonist. In case you’ve read the books, I’m not referring to Andross Guile. Although he is one of my favorite characters in the series. This trilogy turned pentalogy will probably upset a lot of people – especially during the first few books. You’ll wonder why you enjoy reading it when it goes against what you believe in. Read all the way to the last book. It will be worth it.

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Retelling Sherlock

A Study in Scarlet Women

I’ve never actually read Arthur Conan Doyle’s novels about the Sherlock Holmes, but I’ve watched every retelling of the story. To the point that I know how his mind works, how he analyzes every clue – his voice. And Sherry Thomas captures this expertly in Study in Scarlet Women (Lady Sherlock #1). But in her retelling Sherlock Holmes is a woman – and this made it more interesting to me.

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Medical Thriller & Science Fiction

Lock In

I went through a medical thriller phase when I devoured the works of Robin Cook and Michael Crichton. Epidemics that came from infected animals, tracking patient zero, or the mad search for a cure before most of the population dies scintillated my imagination. So when I discovered that John Scalzi‘s Lock In was centered around a disease, I was definitely on board. But it was so much more, a science fiction opus I enjoyed so much.

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Rob Dircks: Writing Style Versus Premise

You're Going to Mars

Have you ever enjoyed the writing style of an author without being impressed by the subject of his story? Science fiction and reality tv shows should never be brought together. I’ve watched so many seasons of Survivor, Dancing With the Stars and The Voice to last me a lifetime – no more, please. To have this concept infect a genre that never fails to bring me awe and wonder is unfair. But that is the premise of You’re Going to Mars! by Rob Dircks and I’m still a little conflicted by my experience.

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Historical Fantasy

The Dragon Republic

R.F. Kuang introduced a new genre into my life, historical fantasy, and it is awesome. Coming from the Philippines, a country that has also been colonized by the Japanese and several Westerners – I was able to relate to the historical part of The Poppy War series. Being partial to Fantasy, with its magic systems and amazing characters, I couldn’t pass up the second book in the series, The Dragon Republic.

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