Jan 13 2013

Giving Your Own Book A Five Star Rating Is Just Outlandish

Posted by Mathias

Some people have no shame.  I see it all the time with authors who give their own book a “5 star” rating on Goodreads and other, similar sites.

And the worst part about it is that they aren’t even shy about it.  They plop it up there and are almost so proud that they are beaming with joy over their actions.

Does any author really not like their own work?  If they don’t, they why are they publishing it?  It is sort of implied that, when an author publishes a book, they think it is a great story that other people should read.  But to advertise this by giving it a rating in such a bold manner is, frankly, outlandish behaviour that to me borders on narcissism.   Especially when you consider how willing other people are to give even average works five stars whether for free, for a little quid pro quo, or even for money. (more…)

Jan 02 2013

January 2nd 2013 Book Reviews And Recomendations From Friends On Goodreads

Posted by Mathias
15849478       12/31  Joanna Penn  gave 5 stars to: The Icarus Deception: How High Will You Fly? by Seth Godin

 

status:           Read in December, 2012

I was part of Seth’s Kickstarter so I bought this early, and reading is has totally fired me up to commit to creating and sharing my own art.

There were many parts of the book that resonated with me, but in combination with Steven Pressfield’s Turning Pro, the message is really to pick yourself, and persist at the practice of creation. “Creating art is a habit, one that we practice daily or hourly until we get good at it … Art isn’t about the rush of victory that comes from being picked. Nor does it involve compliance. Art in the post-industrial age is a lifelong habit, a stepwise process that incrementally allows us to create more art.”

This book is useful for writers, but I would also urge parents to read it in order to understand the world your children are growing up in.The industrial world is disappearing. The old world of standardized exams, tick-box education and guaranteed jobs won’t be there for much longer, and people need to be creative to survive the future. But more than that, life’s too short to spend it doing something that isn’t rewarding. So aim to thrive and not just survive.

I spent 13 years as an IT consultant, a miserable cubicle worker, rewarding myself with sugar and alcohol in order to make it through each day. In September 2011, I finally broke out of that old life, and I couldn’t be happier. Sure, I have less money now, fewer trappings of (so-called) worldly success, but I am making my art, and this feels like real life.
I know some of you are struggling around the same issues, so as you move into 2013, I would recommend reading “The Icarus Deception” for some inspiration. (more…)

Dec 29 2012

More Reviews From My Goodreads Friends

Posted by Mathias

More Book reviews from my friends on Goodreads covering The Rise of Nine, Jackie Blue, James Potter and the Hall of Elders’ Crossing, The Dead of Winter, and The Red Pyramid. (more…)

Dec 28 2012

Rewiews From My Friends On Goodreads

Posted by Mathias

The following book reviews are from my friends on Goodreads. (more…)

Dec 27 2012

Top 10 Books I read in 2012

Posted by Mathias

Comments on this list before I begin.  First of all, this is not a top 10 list of books published in 2012 that I read.  This is a top 10 list of books that I read in 2012, regardless of year published.  Only books that I read for the first time in 2012 qualify for the list.  For example, I reread The Black Company by Glen Cook. which I have rated at 4.75 stars and my #18 favorite book.  However, because it is a reread, it does not qualify for this list.  Lastly, these are my opinions, and my opinions alone. (more…)

Dec 23 2012

What My Friends On Goodreads Are Reading

Posted by Mathias

Here are some recent reviews from my friends on Goodreads for books they have read. (more…)

Dec 15 2012

Review: The Ambassador’s Mission (Traitor Spy Trilogy Book 1), By Trudi Canavan

Posted by Mathias

The Ambasador’s Mission, released in April 2011, is the first book in the continuing saga of Sonea, and a few other characters, from Trudi Canavan’s The Black Magician Trilogy (circa 2001).  We rejoin Sonea, her son, and Cery for further adventures.

The Ambassador’s Mission, as far as its own story goes, drags.  The narrative is chalked full of superfluous text that drowns out more important aspects in favor of droning political intrigue.  When read as a continuation of The Black Magician Trilogy, some of this is forgivable.  But, anyone picking up this story without having read the former will be seriously wanting for explanations.
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Dec 03 2012

Book Review: Mark Lawrence’s Prince of Thorns

Posted by Mathias

Prince of Thorns, the debut novel my Mark Lawrence, follows the story of Jorg, a Prince with a particularly mean streak.  At the age of nine, Jorg watches as his mother and brother are brutally murdered.  He then embarks on a quest for vengeance.  It ‘s a story that has been told, and told successfully, many times.

I think that one thing is clear, Mark Lawrence has a way with words and uses them compellingly to set scenes.  But I also think one other thing is also very clear – in Prince of Thorns, that same talent is not used to give depth to the characters or the overall plot.  Prince Jorg is about as one-dimensional as they come.  His gratuitous callousness is never truly counterbalanced with a desire to feel sorry for him (which would have given him other dimensions he so sorely needed). (more…)

Nov 27 2012

Book Review: Peter V. Brett’s The Warded Man

Posted by Mathias

The world is a dangerous place at night.  Demons (corelings) from the core roam free.  The only things holding them back are wards that must be meticulously cared for or else those hiding behind them become food for the demons.

The Warded Man by Peter Brett follows three different characters (Arlen, Leesha, and Rojer) as they grow up and mature in this world; each learning how to combat the demons in their own way.  At times, the story needlessly diverges from these characters and sucks in a few other, not even secondary, characters to provide some other points of view, but these are the three main characters.  These other POV characters appear for just a brief enough period of time that they don’t detract greatly from the narrative. (more…)

Nov 25 2012

Best Fantasy/Fiction/Sci-Fi Books I Ever Read (31 Through 40)

Posted by Mathias

This list continues my previous ones which can be found at the following links:

Best Fantasy/Fiction/Sci-Fi Books I Ever Read (Top 10)
Best Fantasy/Fiction/Sci-Fi Books I Ever Read (11 Through 20)
Best Fantasy/Fiction/Sci-Fi Books I Ever Read (21 Through 30)

31. Alice‘s Adventures In Wonderland by: Lewis Carroll (4.5 / 5 Stars)

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