Book Review: Conan the Barbarian by Robert E Howard

Classic 3

A series of adventures featuring Conan as he hunts treasure and beautiful women while fighting monsters and the occult. This collection of original stories by Robert E Howard reminded me so much of my gateway into SFF: Edgar Rice Burroughs. Yes, it’s racist and misogynistic, but it is also full of fun puzzles and over-the-top heroes, villains, and battles.

Book Review; A Song of Earth and Fire by George RR Martin

Fantasy 5/5

Ethical Ned Stark must move his family to the centre of the kingdom at his king’s request—a place where an honest man will be undermined at every turn by the corrupt and unprincipled. A beautifully written, page turning epic fantasy is exactly my cup of tea, and this one did not disappoint.

Lots of balls in the air!

I had surgery on my foot on Thursday, so I was doing a ton of stuff around the house to be sure I didn’t have it hanging over me for the next few weeks–got the garden in, stuff like that. But now I’ve got six weeks of having to sit around and I actually feel pretty good–no fuzz brain–so I’m hoping to get lots done.

This week I submitted final reports for both of the grants I got last year, so those deadlines are met, and I only have a couple of chapters to go to finish the edits on my novel. Then a read-through and get back on the searching-for-an-agent work (yuck).
The non-fiction book is at the publisher’s (this is a hybrid deal–the publisher is paying upfront costs for cover, proofing, digital uploading, and some of the publicity, and my co-author and I are doing a split of the income) and we hope to see it out in late June, early July.  Also, updated my website to display the book cover and link to the other author–yay!
The biography is at beta readers until late June, then I do edits and submit. Got a manuscript review to do this month, and I just received the submissions for a weekend artist-in-residence gig, and then I return to edits for book 4 of my series–likely won’t get to that until July. Lots of balls in the air!

Book Review: Parable of the Sower by Octavia E Butler

Classic 5+/5

Lauren, forced from her gated community by societal disintegration, must make her way to somewhere where she and a few trusted friends can find sanctuary against a world turned to barbarism. That single-sentence plot summary barely scratches the surface of this complex, nuanced novel. Not only does the work have everything you could want from a book—amazing writing, complex characters, an immersive world, and thought-provoking themes, it strikes with an authenticity that seems like a true prophesy of our spiraling future.