Relationship Issues and Our Kindle

Apologies are due for the lapse in my blogging – life in our household has been especially hectic of late. Additionally, it seems my husband has finally discovered the joys of the Kindle (it was a joint Christmas gift to the both of us), and has been somewhat monopolizing it to play “Clash of Lords 2.” I’ve never played this game, but personally, I recommend avoiding it. Based on what I’ve heard about it, it seems that when you’re not actively playing the game, unless you’ve put up “shields” which will keep you from playing the game until they expire, you’re open to attack and losing everything you’ve worked for. This seems terribly frustrating to me (and frustrating to the hubby – we’ve had a few incidents where I “stole” the Kindle as he wasn’t directly playing, but he was trying to keep his game logged in during those times to avoid these attacks, and my time on the Kindle was enough to log him out, ergo, he lost what he was working toward). The games I play provide “bonuses” for the time you’re logged out (such as allowing other players to borrow your character and offering “pal points” to both the player who is using another character and the player whose character is used), so I find it quite petty for a game that offers only “threats” during the time a player is logged out.

But enough about games. This blog is about books.

I have actually read a few (or at least a couple), and we’re now working toward a more amenable schedule so that I can once again get a little screen time without fear of inspiring the hubby’s wrath.

One recent read, inspired by the relationship between my husband, myself and our Kindle, was “Men Fake Foreplay … And Other Lies That Are True” by Mike Dugan. I picked this book up as a free promotion a while back, it’s regularly priced at $3.99.

Dugan points out straight-away that the intention of his book isn’t to bash men (a sentiment that I found a slight bit disappointing as I started my reading, as I was in a particularly pessimistic mood regarding “mankind” at the moment). But he launched into his subject matter with such wit and humor that I soon found my mood lightening regardless, and I thoroughly enjoyed the first half of the book without even realizing that there was some pretty serious and thoughtful relationship advice.

Not to say that this isn’t an enjoyable read after the first half, but there’s a definite change of tone in the second half, and I found myself missing the zany zingers peppered with almost subliminal relationship advice as I moved into the more serious subject matter toward the end.

At $3.99, I feel that this is a great book for those who might be seeking a little light-hearted relationship advice which might help others have a little better understanding of their other half. Those seeking only a light-humorous read (the comedic antics that have earned Dugan an Emmy for his writing for television) may wish to wait for another book.

Either way, if you happen to stumble across this book as a free promotion, as I did, I’d definitely recommend adding it to your Kindle library.

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The Waiting Room blog tour – more information

Can’t get enough of “The Waiting Room”? Be sure to check in on the upcoming blog tour!

The Wessex Literary Review

10477417_347452278741545_3617179956241689341_nAs previously posted, we are proud to be part of the blog tour to promote Alysha Kaye’s new novel the Waiting Room. A series of posts, interviews, reviews and other promotional hi-jinks and literary shenanigans are taking place over a succession of days, just like a virtual tour. Please check out the other sites supporting the tour and helping give new authors the exposure that they need.

Here’s the line-up:

7/10 The Owl Lady

7/11 Ronovan Writes

7/12 Penny Dreadful Book Reviews

7/13 My train of thoughts on…

7/14 The Wessex Literary Review

7/15 A Simple, Village Undertaker

7/16 Fran the Bookie

7/17 Loving Life in the Rain

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Finding what you’re looking for

While I found an enjoyable read (albeit not quite what I was looking for) for my Saturday shorts, I also finished another e-book Saturday which was exactly what I was looking for.

A Winter Dandelion” by Amy Steiner was a delightful journey of recovery and learning to “let go and let God.” I’d highly recommend this book to anyone dealing with the struggles of being a caretaker to an older parent or loved-one. Full of poignant humor, this book is a journey that leads the reader through dementia and past abuse, past raising your own children, and ends in letting go and realizing that you have to let everyone make their own decisions and mistakes.

I found this book during a search, sorted by price, for “recovery fiction.” I had been looking over a couple of free books given to me by an author on the subject of stroke and missionary discipleship, and they just didn’t pique my interest the way I had hoped they might (I will return to finish these books at some point). What those two books did do for me was cause me to realize the hang-ups on my current writing project — the fear that a memoir dealing with stroke recovery may be too private and the fear that no one will find the work interesting.

And then I began to wonder, what about a work of fiction (perhaps even a series focusing on different scenarios, if successful), loosely based on my experience? Could it work? Would it be interesting?

I’ve read medical thrillers and medical romance, but I couldn’t recall any simple “medical fiction,” something that specifically dealt with the day-to-day details of dealing with a medical situation. I suppose there’s probably a lot of generic fiction that does deal with these issues, but I didn’t know how to find it specifically.

However, my search worked. “A Winter Dandelion” was exactly the sort of book I was looking for to tell me that a simple fiction dealing lightly with medical issues and recovery in the context of literature can, and does, work.

Published in 2011, “A Winter Dandelion” is Steiner’s only work available for the Kindle. I hope to see more from her in the future. Regularly priced at $2.99, I feel like this is a nice read for the price, and Steiner does periodically offer a free promotional period for the book.

What you find is not always what you’re looking for

Another busy week around my house had me searching again for a humorous short story for my Saturday review.

That wasn’t really what I found in the book I selected, but I came away satisfied with a good read, anyway.

After a searching the Kindle store for short humor, I finally settled on “Six Impossible Things” by Renee Carter Hall for today’s reading. The cover art reminds me of a CD cover for the band Cake, which I really enjoy and can be quirky and off-beat in their humor, so I had really high hopes for a little laugh-out-loud comedy to lighten my mood.

According to the description on Amazon, this book includes, “A new father is visited by his childhood imaginary friend. A woman falls in love with a cartoon character. The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse show up at a big-box retail chain. Sometimes humorous, often poignant, and always memorable, the six short stories in this collection may just make you believe impossible things.”

Although I didn’t find the light-hearted comedy that I was searching for, I did find a beautifully written, moving set of short stories. They mostly left a smile on my face, although I came closer to crying than I did to laughing in reading these short stories. Hall’s stories had a magical sense of nostalgia about them; they truly embraced the spirit of childhood dreams.

This is definitely a great free book for any fan of short fiction. I’d have even been satisfied with a purchase at the regular digital list price of $.99. I find it unfortunate that Hall doesn’t seem to have made more use of Kindle Direct Publishing or other easy sources to make her work available on digital format, as it seems only around half of the works on her Amazon page (which also includes a number of anthologies with other authors) are available in digital format. I hope she’ll consider releasing more short story anthologies in the future, because I found myself capitvated by this one.