About suzannerogersonfantasyauthor

I live in Middlesex with my hugely encouraging husband and two children. I wrote my first novel at the age of twelve. I discovered the fantasy genre in my late teens and have never looked back. Giving up work to raise a family gave me the impetus to take my attempts at novel writing beyond the first draft, and I'm lucky enough to have a husband who supports my dream - even if he does occasionally hint that I should get a proper job. I love gardening and have a Hebe (shrub) fetish. I enjoy cooking with ingredients from the garden, and regularly feed unsuspecting guests vegetable-based cakes. I collect books, love going for walks and picnics with the children and sharing with them my love of nature and photography. I'm interested in history and enjoy wandering around castles. But most of all I like escaping with a great film, or soaking in a hot bubble bath with an ice cream and a book.

#Bookreview 111 Tips to get FREE Book Reviews by Doris-Maria Heilmann

My review of 111 Tips to get FREE book reviews

book cover 111 tips book review

The Blurb

111 Tips to Get FREE Book Reviews provides authors with more than 1,200 direct links to book bloggers and reviewers – clickable links to each website! This valuable guide book by Doris-Maria Heilmann provides authors on almost 200 pages with all aspects of finding, following, and networking with reviewers and influential bloggers. Many important steps, such as researching 111 Tips to Get FREE Book Reviews provides authors with more than 1,200 direct links to book bloggers and reviewers – clickable links to each website! This valuable guide book by Doris-Maria Heilmann provides authors on almost 200 pages with all aspects of finding, following, and networking with reviewers and influential bloggers. Many important steps, such as researching which genre book reviewers prefer and how to connect with them, or how to get media reviews will help you successfully market your books. How to prepare professional ARC’s (advance review copies) in order to get reviews before your book’s launch, is described in detail. Dozens of other valuable insider information, such as how to get endorsements for a nonfiction book, how to leverage your reviews, how to deal with negative book reviews, why join reader communities and plan book blog tours – including tips from bestselling authors and the publishing industry will help you to get lots of free book reviews. Goodreads book link

My Review

Today I would like to share my review of a very helpful book by Doris-Maria Heilmann. First of all I would like to warn you that this book is big and time-consuming – in a good way!

It has well over 1000 clickable links to book reviewer websites and it is strangely addictive clicking through to find reviewers that might be interested in your book / genre. As this was published in 2016 not all the sites are active, and some are closed to new review requests. But still it is a brilliant resource if you have the time to wade through every link.

There are also links to audiobook reviewers and non-fiction reviewers.

Scattered through the pages of links are plenty of informative articles. This format works very well. Here is a list of a few of the helpful subjects covered; Importance of the last pages, virtual blog tours, planning your pitch to bloggers, ARC’s, paid reviews, editorial reviews, and many more.

One criticism – The book could do with updating to get rid of some of the reviewers who are no longer active, but I understand this is something that is constantly changing and you can never be on top of every active link.

I recommend this book to people starting out on their author journey as you can learn a lot. And others, like me, who have been published a couple of years can still benefit from the knowledge in this book.

Note – I was sent a free copy of this book during a Christmas 2017 deal. I purchased a book in the series and was able to request 2 further books from the author for free.  So look out for more reviews in the future.

#IndieMarch Day 4: Share your favourite Indie book cover #indieauthor

It’s day 4 of Rebecca Howie’s #Indiemarch tag. Today the prompt is share your favourite Indie author book cover. For me this is an easy one. I’ve loved the Crown of Stone’s books by C. L. Schneider ever since I spotted this cover. It is brilliant.


The book is excellent. So is book 2 for cover and content!

magic scars

I can’t wait to read book 3 this year and finish the trilogy.


Don’t forget to join Rebecca Howie‘s #IndieMarch tag. See the prompts below. You can take part on your blog or Instagram.


#indiemarch Day 3: Share some #indie reads #indieauthor

Well I made it back from a full-on day of talks in London. Now I have just enough time to share some indie authors on my TBR list before I settle down with a glass of wine and catch up on The Voice.

These next books are by indie authors that I have had the pleasure of reading.

Reviews of the above books can be found on my blog (apart from Fantasy Map Making which I have yet to write a review for).

Please check out these great indie authors. And don’t forget to follow the #indiemarch tag with Rebecca Howie.





#Indiemarch Day 2: My 1st published novel #indieauthor #fantasy

‘Two wizards, 350 years apart. Can they save the realm of Paltria from Zarua’s dark past?’

After a lot of indecision, I finally published my first novel, Visions of Zarua, in Nov 2015. It’s a standalone, epic fantasy that has gained 30 ratings on Goodreads, 19 reviews on Amazon UK and 12 on Amazon US.

Visions of Zarua Book Cover

Self publishing was the realisation of a dream for me. Holding my novel in paperback gave me such a sense of achievement. I’ve been overwhelmed with the wonderful reviews and the support of the blogging community over these last two and a bit years. So much so that I jumped in and did it all again in June 2017 and have plans to publish my third book in 2018.


I have some amazing news that I’ve been desperate to share with everyone about Visions of Zarua. Nothing has been finalised yet, but I decided as it’s #indiemarch and the prompt is to talk about your first book, that it was the perfect time to reveal what’s been going on. A few months ago I was approached by a Czech publisher who wants to publish the Czech translation of Visions of Zarua.

Once some cover issues have been sorted out, I hope to sign the contract and then maybe work can start on the translation. When I know more, I will be sure to share it. For now I’ll leave you with the blurb and a brief excerpt.


An ancient darkness haunts the realm of Paltria.
Apprentice wizard Paddren is plagued by visions of a city on the brink of annihilation. When his master Kalesh dies in mysterious circumstances, the Royal Order of Wizards refuses to investigate.
Helped by his childhood friend, the skilled tracker Varnia, and her lover Leyoch, Paddren vows to find the killer.
The investigation leads Paddren down a sinister path of assassins, secret sects and creatures conjured by blood magic. But he is guided by a connection with a wizard from centuries ago – a wizard whose history holds the key to the horror at the heart of the abandoned city of Zarua. Can Paddren decipher his visions in time to save the Paltrian people from the dark menace of Zarua’s past?


As Paddren stepped through the unmanned gates of the Redstone Manor estate, a presence shrouded by darkness brushed against his mind. Sharp pain ripped through his skull and white light flashed across his vision. He staggered to a halt and dropped his pack of supplies on the cobbles as a thunderclap exploded in his head. He gripped his skull between his hands, the pain so excruciating he had to clench his teeth to stop from screaming. His mental shield began to buckle, but then the unfamiliar presence retreated as suddenly as it had arrived.
He sucked in a shaky breath and tasted the tang of blood in his mouth. A tremor quaked through his body and his hand shook as he stooped to snatch up his discarded bag.
‘Are you all right, Paddren?’ one of the baron’s stewards asked, detaching himself from the small crowd that had gathered to watch.
‘I’m fine,’ Paddren said, forcing a smile.
The onlookers began to shuffle away. Ignoring them, Paddren tried to envisage the dark presence – certain it had been searching for someone or something. Whatever its purpose, he knew he had to tell his master.

If you are interested in finding out more about Visions of Zarua, here’s the universal amazon link.

Thanks to Rebecca Howie for creating the #indiemarch tag. Check out her site here.

If you want to join in, here’s the list of daily prompts.


(I hope to join in tomorrow, but I’ll be braving the snow and heading into London for a Getting Published Day. I will catch up on Sunday if I miss out.)


#Indiemarch Day 1: Photo of your book babies #indieauthor #indie

Thanks to Rebecca, on Rebeccahowiebooks  for coming up with this #indiemarch tag idea for the month of march.

Here’s my offering for day 1



You can join in on your blog or on Instagram. Here’s the list of the daily prompts.


Copy your link onto Rebecca’s post here.

Come on, let’s ignore the snow and support our fellow indie authors.

10 Tips for re-reading your novel after publication #indieauthor #amediting

A few weeks ago I re-read The Lost Sentinel (Book One in the Silent Sea Chronicles). I loved the experience of reading my own book in paperback, and I had the brilliant idea to use post-it notes to highlight things as I went along. These may have been facts I wanted to check in book 2, reminders for planning book 3 and the prequel, spelling or grammar niggles, places where the Astral Plane was mentioned etc.


I loved the blue post-its matching the cover, but I soon discovered the disadvantages of this method. I didn’t write on every note exactly what I was supposed to be checking. Going through it afterwards, not all the highlights made sense and I couldn’t find any problems with the text. Having suffered this problem, I thought it would be a good idea to share my top tips…


  1. First decide why you are re-reading and what you want to get out of the experience.
  2. Don’t be scared! If, like me, your book has been read and reviewed you have those reviews to fall back on. Perhaps they have flagged up issues you need to address, or maybe you can just read them as a confidence boost.
  3. You have to let go when you re-read. So you’re suddenly not happy with the placement of a comma, or you think a sentence could be rewritten a little better. Ask yourself is it really that big a deal? I’m never satisfied with my writing, so I decided that I had to overlook some of the little niggles or I’d end up rewriting the whole thing! I did make a couple of changes, but this wasn’t an exercise in making The Lost Sentinel better, I wanted to read the sequel straight after to ensure the books worked as a series. (Thankfully they do.)
  4. Have a notebook handy to jot down any facts that need to be checked, or issues to work through.
  5. Post-it notes are great as they allow you to mark a section you have an issue with and let you get on with reading without breaking the flow. BUT make a note of the point you’re highlighting! It saves time later on.
  6. Colour coding the post-its is a quick and easy shortcut. I went back and did this afterwards. I used different colours to represent book 2, 3 and the prequel. A different colour for the scenes that featured the Astral Plane, and finally any changes that needed working through were transcribed into my notebook to work through later.
  7. Be prepared to love and hate your own writing. I had ups and downs re-reading The Lost Sentinel. When I was feeling down, I looked back over those reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. It’s always good to be reminded that others have enjoyed the book and loved your characters.
  8. Don’t forget to celebrate your achievement. Publishing a book is amazing. Enjoy holding it, reading it and savour the whole experience.
  9. Once the re-read is done you have to decide what changes are really necessary. Then you’ll need to update the e-book and paperback files before re-submitting them to your chosen platforms, in my case Amazon and Createspace.
  10. Finally, double-check everything you’ve changed is correct once it has been published. It’s worth taking your time and making sure the book is the best you can make it. Then hopefully future re-reads won’t result in more changes.


I will probably go through the above process when I’ve finished writing book 3, and for any future books in the Silent Sea Chronicles. Hopefully next time around it will go more smoothly. And I hope you can take something helpful from this as well.

Have you any tips to share when re-reading your published work?


Silent Sea Chronicles is a heroic fantasy series set on the magical island of Kalaya.

Book 1 – The Lost Sentinel is available now at Amazon.

Book 2 – The Sentinel’s Reign will soon be sent off to my second wave of Beta readers. And then after a final edit and proof read, I will hopefully be ready to publish by May. Closer to the date I will have a cover reveal – I can’t wait to share the amazing cover with you.

Thanks for reading. I hope you will continue you follow my journey as an indie author.


#Indiemarch: Taking pride in your work

I love the idea of #Indiemarch.
Let’s all get behind Rebecca Howie’s idea and celebrate our own books by taking part in this tag everyday throughout March.


Doubt is as much a part of being a writer as the actual writing, and after finishing my second novel last year, I realised just how easy it is to underplay our achievements.

Publishing a novel is huge, and whether or not it was traditionally published shouldn’t matter. So #indiemarch is my attempt at getting the indie community together to share their pride in their work, because there’s enough doubt from everyone else without our own nagging little voices adding to the pile.

Below are the prompts for each of the 31 days, and you can take part either on your blog or on Instagram.


Don’t forget to use the #indiemarch tag so I can see your entries, and link your posts in the comments section here so we can all be proud indie authors together!

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Guest Post by Susan Leigh Noble and #Bookexcerpt of #Newrelease Blood Bond #fantasy #dragons

Hello and welcome to a guest post all about believability in writing. Followed by an excerpt from Susan Leigh Noble’s new release, Blood Bond.

Guest Post

Believability: An essential ingredient to your story

As you watch a gun fight during an action movie, both sides shoot and shoot and shoot some more. And while you are engrossed in the action, somewhere in the back of your mind, you wonder, “Shouldn’t they run out of bullets or at least need to reload?”

Just like watching that action scene momentarily jars you out of the movie, many things in your novel can have the same effect on your reader. I know that we are writing fiction, and anything can happen, but there still needs to be a level of believability.

If your story takes place on Earth, there are certain things that people will take for granted – gravity, geography, travel time, etc. Readers may have knowledge of the professions of your characters or the locations of their travel. If you don’t know this information, you may inadvertently have something happen that jars the reader out of the story.

The answer to this is to do research. You can talk with a fireman, visit a court trial, take a trip to New York City, or if you can’t do that, you can do research on the Internet. This research can add little details to your scenes that ring of authenticity and will draw your reader into the story.

If your story has elements of science fiction and fantasy, you may be dealing with the impossible. But there are still ways to make your story believable. For one, your characters need to believe their world is real. If dragons exist or there is technology to beam someone down to a planet from a space ship, it shouldn’t come as a shock to the characters.

Magic use to be prevalent only in fantasy novels but more and more, magic shows up in other genres, including romance and suspense. Magic can certainly enhance a story, but you need to make sure it is believable. If you make magic the answer to everything, there will be no conflict in your story. Instead, you need to define (at least for yourself) what can and cannot be done with magic and then stick to those rules.

Being consistent with your details, whether they are about magic or the setting, can allow your reader to be immersed in your make-believe world, and you won’t jar your reader out of the story with something as ridiculous as a gun that never runs out of bullets.

Thanks for the great advice, Susan. She regulary shares advice and writing tips on her blog Into Another World. So please pop over and have a look once you’ve checked out the book excerpt below of course.


Susan’s new book, Blood Bond, was released on 6th February 2018. You can pick up a copy here.

Blood Bond

Book Blurb

Man severed the alliance with the dragons fifty years ago. But now an invading army marches north destroying everything in its path. The dragons believe only together can the invaders be defeated. They need an emissary.

Womanizer. Drunk. Failure. Soren is many things. A leader isn’t one of them. But, Dex, the dragon that saves him from a cliff, believes different. Thrust into an adventure he never wanted, Soren’s life changes forever when during a battle Dex’s blood mixes with his blood creating a mythical blood bond – forever linking them.

As the bond strengthens, Soren must decide whether to return to his old life or accept the bond and embrace his role in the battle against the invading army.

Blood Bond Book Excerpt

Soren scrambled to his feet as the golden dragon, Rakkah, landed near him. For a moment, they stared at each other.

“You shouldn’t be bonded to Reddex.” Her voice reverberated within his head as she flicked her tail.

“It wasn’t by choice,” he said, speaking directly into her mind.

He didn’t like the feeling of being trapped with the tree behind his back and stepped away from it. He carefully kept Rakkah in front of him as he moved.

“That matters not.” She walked around him. “Definitely not worthy to be a dragon rider.”

Pride had him lifting his chin. “Maybe not but Dex said I was the one to help bridge man and dragon.”

“Is that what he told you? Did he tell you about the others?” She studied him, before chuckling. “I can tell by the look on your face, he didn’t. You weren’t the first one he approached you know. There were others. He settled for you.”

Soren shook his head. “No that isn’t true. He said he had a feeling I was the one.”

“A smooth line if I ever heard one. I’ll let you in on something. If he said that, it was him manipulating you. There were others who turned him down. He was under time pressure, so he settled for you. And it is only by accident he is now linked to you. I am sure he would rather not be. I know I would.” She flicked her tail. “Take Warnox up on his offer. It will be better for everyone.”

He shook his head. “I don’t…”

Before he could continue, Rakkah’s words sunk in and his bewilderment turned to anger. His heart pounded, and his shoulders shook. And then Dex was there. The red dragon faced Rakkah, slashing his own tail. Soren couldn’t hear anything but was sure words were exchanged between the two as they circled each other, their eyes locked. Suddenly, Rakkah leapt into the air and flew back to the other dragons. Dex turned to Soren.

“I don’t know what Rakkah said to you, but I could feel your confusion…and your anger.”

“Tell me the truth,” he said, his fists clinched. “Was I your first choice?”

“My first choice? Choice for what?”

“To help you approach the King.”

Dex stared at him for a moment before looking down. “You weren’t the first I approached, but Soren…”

He didn’t wait to hear any more. Soren walked over to Warnox. With each step, his anger grew. He could still hear Rakkah’s taunting voice. She had been right. He wasn’t Dex’s first choice. He had lied to him about being the one the dragons needed. He shook his head as if to clear the thoughts away. But they persisted, and he quickly covered the distance to the other dragons and to his freedom.

“Take me back to Ballinger,” he said to Warnox.

The brown dragon regarded him for a moment. “You can ride on Barth. Mount up. It is time to go.”

Soren briefly recoiled at the thought of riding without a harness but reassured himself it would only be a short distance. Barth bent down, and he scrambled onto his back.

“Soren?” Dex asked, his voice cautious.

He didn’t respond or even look at Dex as Barth took off, following the other dragons into the air. He grabbed for the harness before realizing it wasn’t there. His hands searched for something to hold on to but found nothing. As Barth leveled out, Soren resisted the urge to look at the ground far below.

“Are you sure this is what you want?” Barth asked.

Soren hesitated. “Yes. It is for the best. I am not meant to be a dragon rider.”

“Can you sense Reddex from here?”

Soren felt unsettled but couldn’t determine if it was his own feeling or if it came from Dex too. As he concentrated, he could feel Dex’s anxiety.

“He is worried,” he admitted reluctantly.

You shouldn’t be able to connect with him at this distance. He told me how far apart you two have been when you have communicated. It is farther than any other linked pair.”

Soren watched Warnox and the other dragons disappear before his eyes, Blinking back to the City of Ballinger. He knew Barth would follow suit in a moment and felt a twinge of regret.

“You shouldn’t be doing this,” Barth said.

Suddenly, he dove toward the ground, flipping over in the air. Soren’s fingers tried to grasp onto Barth’s back but there was nothing to hold. He fell through the air. He saw Barth above him and then nothing but the blue sky as Barth Blinked.


I hope you’ve enjoyed the guest post and excerpt today. Don’t forget to check out Blood Bond on Amazon US here and Amazon UK here.

Finally here’s a little more about the author, Susan Leigh Noble…

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Susan Noble has always loved dragons and magic, so it is no wonder that she became an author of fantasy novels. As a cat lover, she also had to throw in a telepathic cat to the mix in her The Elemental trilogy. In addition to her trilogy, she has published The Search, a short story prequel to the trilogy and The Heir to Alexandria, a full-length standalone fantasy adventure. Her latest fantasy, Blood Bond, was released February 6, 2018.

When she isn’t writing, Susan is an active volunteer in her neighborhood and at her children’s schools. She lives with her husband, two children, three cats and two Cocker Spaniels in Texas.

#TuesdayBookBlog The Cornish House by Liz Fenwick #Bookreview #womensfic #romance

Although I planned to read just fantasy this year, I picked this book up one evening for a quick glance and just couldn’t put it down. The house and Cornish setting were the draws, but I just fell into the character’s stories and they wouldn’t let me go.

Here’s the blurb…

When artist Maddie inherits a house in Cornwall shortly after the death of her husband, she hopes it will be the fresh start she and her step-daughter desperately need. Trevenen is beautiful but neglected, and as Maddie discovers the stories of generations of women who’ve lived there before, she begins to feel her life is somehow intertwined within its walls.

But Maddie’s dream of a calm life in the countryside is far from the reality she faces – and as she pulls at the seams of Trevenen’s past, the house reveals secrets that have lain hidden for generations.


My Review

First thoughts

Although it’s quite an intense subject dealing with loss and a heartbroken step-daughter, I didn’t find this story depressing or difficult to read at any point. There are plenty of tear-jerking moments, as you might expect from a story of second chances. But new friendships and healing play a big part in the story too. And as I expected, the house and its secrets kept me hooked.


I really like all the characters in this book, the main characters Maddie and her step daughter Hannah, Mark and Old Tom (OT), Tasmin and Will, plus the other characters that play a part in this small Cornish community.

Maddie is an easy protagonist to like and you feel every moment of her suffering and relate to the hard decisions she’s had to make. I also liked the fact she was an artist struggling to find her inspiration again after the loss of her husband.

Trevenen, the house, is a character all of its own. I’d love to inherit an old house like that and restore it.

Writing style

Told mainly from Maddie’s POV, we also get to see the story through Hannah viewpoint and this works really well.

Final thoughts

I loved the layers to this story, the different pieces that come together from the characters’ recent past and much further back in history.

The story intrigued me, the characters came alive and filled my head, I loved every minute of reading it. In fact, I would love to pick it up now and re-read the whole book again. I will definitely be reading more of Liz Fenwick’s books.


To anyone who enjoy women’s fiction, not just romance but something a bit extra.


5 out of 5 stars, though I wish I could give it more.

Check it on Amazon and Goodreads.

Monthly writing & reading update #amwriting #amreading

It’s taking me time to get back into blogging, so I apologise for the infrequency of my posts. Plus January was a very busy, and interesting, month for me…

I’ve finished the second book in Silent Sea Chronicles – The Sentinel’s Reign and have passed it to my first wave of beta readers for their feedback. Once received, I’ll be making the changes and passing to the next stage of beta readers. Then it’s the final edit / proof read and hopefully I will be ready to publish before The Lost Sentinel’s 1st anniversary in June.person-girl-human-joy-615334

It’s been a quiet reading month with only two books completed. And so much for my decision to focus purely on fantasy, the second book I read was woman’s fiction, which totally absorbed me.

51kJyA8cmhL._AC_US218_[1]See my review here

51ZeMGa4VoL._SX323_BO1,204,203,200_    ( Review to follow next week. )

I’m currently reading…


A Gathering of Shadows Final

And I plan to read my own books next; The Lost Sentinel and then The Sentinel’s Reign. Reading them back to back will ensure they feel like a series and hopefully fill me with inspiration to complete book three – The Sentinel’s Alliance.


What are your views of adding your own books to your Goodreads bookshelf and marking them as currently reading etc?

As to my other new years resolutions, I’ve joined Slimming World and have bought a treadmill, both of which have seen me well on the way to achieving my goal of getting healthier in 2018.

I have also been toying with the idea of approaching agents, after some unexpected and amazing developments that I hope to share with you all very soon. With agents in mind, I’m hoping to attend The Getting Published Day 2018 workshop taking place in London in March. It feels like the right time in my writing journey to take this step. Depending how this goes, will determine whether I stick to my publishing schedule for The Sentinel’s Reign.

Look out for more posts from me next week; book review of The Cornish House by Liz Fenwick, a guest post and excerpt of Susan Leigh Noble’s new book – Blood Bond, and perhaps an update on my very exciting news…

Have a great Sunday!