SPFBO #Fantasy books to add to your TBR. Free to read with #KindleUnlimited

Many people in the self publishing world will be aware of the annual ‘Self Published Fantasy Blog Off’ competition set up by Mark Lawrence. 300 hundred books are whittled down to just 1 winner.

A great community has sprung up around this competition. Part of that has been authors coming together to share news of their books, price promos and today I’m sharing the page set up to showcase some SPFBO authors, past and present, whose books are free to read with Kindle Unlimited.

J Elizabeth Vincent has kindly put this together, please take a look here.

SPFBO-KU

Both of my books, Visions of Zarua (entered 2016) and The Lost Sentinel (current entry), are on the list.

Talking of The Lost Sentinel I just found out at the weekend that Lynn, the judge with my book in her group of 30 books has picked The Lost Sentinel as one of her second batch reads this month! That means in a few weeks time I will hopefully know if The Lost Sentinel is still in the running. Check out Lynn’s post about her latest choices over on Lynns book blog.

I have everything crossed, but the competition is very strong. I know I would make a useless judge, but thankfully I only have to read for the pleasure of it and don’t have to pick any winners.

I have purchased a number of titles thanks to this competition. Here is a link to my post about the books I’ve bought and why.

Thanks for reading, and I hope to be back tomorrow with my first book review in a while.

My thoughts on #SPFBO promo sale and my purchases of #indieauthors #fantasy books #tbr

The 5 day book promo is over and I couldn’t resist picking up some books at the bargain price whilst also helping to support my fellow indie authors.

I don’t know when I’ll get the chance to read them as I’ve already set myself a reading challenge for the summer, see the post here, but I will read them all and review them when I can.

There will be lots of reviews going up for the 300 books in this year’s SPFBO. You can keep in touch with these by searching #SPFBO on twitter and facebook, and by checking Mark Lawrence’s dedicated SPFBO page where he shares links to the judges reviews, relevant blog posts and has a counter that shows how many books are left in the competition.

I thought it would be fun to share the books that caught my eye during the sale and to say why I bought them. And of course it doesn’t hurt to give these authors a little extra exposure. So here is my list.

Starting with those already purchased

Magic Price – C.L Schneider reviewed here. A 5 star read, I loved the cover the premise and when I read it, I loved the story too!

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Melokai – Rosalyn Kelly

I was interested in this one having followed some of Rosalyn’s blog posts and then reading the prequel The Sand Scuttler which I reviewed here.

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The Exercise of Vital Power – Ian Gregorie (last year’s entry in SPFBO)

I love the revised cover of Ian’s book and was quick to buy it when it went on pre-order.

cover-artwork

New purchases

The Game Bird – Aidan R Walsh

I loved the cover and just had to buy it! Plus it has ships and sea monsters. Who can resist?

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A Wizard’s Forge – A.M Justice

The cover was a semi finalist in my group’s cover competition, and I can see why! From the blurb I think I’m going to enjoy this book. Plus it has some very positive reviews.

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Symphony of the Wind – Steven McKinnon

The cover is a draw for me and I was also impressed by the blurb. I don’t come across many books set in the desert and I haven’t read much steampunk so I’ll look forward to trying this one out.

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We Ride the Storm – Devin Madson

My son spotted this one on the list and said the cover looked really good. I had seen a few reviews on goodreads and thought why not try it out and see what I think.

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Crossfire – Andrea Domanski

Andrea did a lot of hard work setting up the giveaway so of course I was going to support her by buying her book. But the book cover and the blurb also did a good job of selling the book to me. I haven’t read much in the way of Urban fantasy, so this sounds like a great place to see what I think of the genre.

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The Blighted City – Scott Kaelen

I like covers with cities and the blurb sounds intriguing. I’ve also seen reviews for this book and knew I wanted to read it.

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High Barrens – Alice Sabo

This one is in my group of 30. I like the cover and the blurb so I thought why not see what its about. I’m intrigued to find out about Flint and how she can see into souls. This sounds like just my sort of story.

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Fire’s Song – J.E. Mueller

I loved the cover but wasn’t so taken with the blurb at first. But when I checked the book again another day, because I still just loved the cover, I thought actually this sounds pretty good.

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The Shadows Are Stirring – Hannah Sullivan

A one for younger readers, this really caught my attention. I love the idea of talking horses. And the cover is brilliant.

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Kingshold – D.P. Woolliscroft

I like the cover and the blurb, and have seen some good reviews knocking around. So this was an easy purchase.

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Liath Luachra: The Swallowed – Brian O’Sullivan

It sounded like something a bit different and I like the idea of Druids and spectral forests, so I’m hoping to enjoy this one. It does say book 2, but also that it can standalone, so I’ll have to see how that goes.

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Blade and Rose – Miranda Honfleur

I was drawn in by the premise of this book, and I was interested to read a fantasy with more romance at its heart.

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There were so many books that I would like to have bought, but alas I don’t have the money to buy them all. I look forward to reading the above books and reviewing them in the future. I wish everyone in the competition luck and look forward to seeing the judges reviews as they come in.

My thoughts on the SPFBO sale…

The Lost Sentinel didn’t fair as well as I’d hoped throughout the sale, but looking at the competition I can understand why. When faced with so many books, a reader must really be dragged in by the cover, the tag line and the blurb – I know as I looked at most of the books on the list and I probably wouldn’t have bought The Lost Sentinel either. I had to be so selective as my budget is non-existent, and I’m sure this will have been the same for many of those checking through the books for new reads.

Although I still love my cover and won’t consider changing it yet, when I saw it against the others I knew it didn’t have the same instant appeal.

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Book 2 would have stood out better and someone did purchase it during the sale, so that was an added bonus!

The Sentinel's Reign book cover

I’ve been trying to improve the blurb of The Lost Sentinel, and it’s something I want to keep working on. My experience of looking through the list of books showed how a long winded blurb can put off a potential reader rather than entice them to click Buy Now.

So in all I didn’t gain that many sales, but I did gain extra insight into the competition my book is up against for a reader’s attention, and I’ve realised my blurb is in need of work. This experience has also led me to make a decision that I will stop obsessing over the sales and reviews for now and instead focus on book 3. Once the series is complete I can work on my sales tactics, but if I carry on as I am book 3 will never be finished!

Another quick thank you to Andrea Domanski for hosting the sales page and for her tips regarding my blurb.

And thank you to those who purchased The Lost Sentinel, I appreciate every sale.

And finally this is a cheeky reminder that The Lost Sentinel is still only 99p / 99c until the 8th August. I have also reduced the price in Canada (if it has worked) as that is where my Ad with EbookSoda is posted today. Check out the EbookSoda website if you want to place an ad for your future book sales and kindle countdown deals.

Thanks for reading, and good luck to everyone in the SPFBO 4 competition.

A quick round up for The Lost Sentinel #Netgalley #fantasy

The Lost Sentinel has a few things going on at the moment and I thought I’d do a quick round-up for you.

It’s available to request on Netgalley for the next few days only. Please check it out here and request an ARC if it sounds like your kind of fantasy.

Tomorrow begins a new 99p Kindle Countdown Deal. So if you aren’t on Netgalley, you can pick it up for the bargain price of 99p 1st – 8th August. This is to coincide with the start of ‘Self Published Fantasy Blog Off’ as detailed below…

On the 1 year anniversary of publication (16th June) I entered The Lost Sentinel into the very popular SPFBO competition, set up by the great Mark Lawrence. In it’s forth year, the competition for 300 authors was full within 48 hours, so I was lucky to grab the opportunity when I did. The judging rounds open tomorrow, meaning reviewers will start posting their reviews and a winner from each group (30 authors to 1 reviewer/review team) will eventually be chosen and put into the final 10. There have been some huge success stories because of this competition, so it’ll be exciting to find out who wins big this year.

Another really exciting thing for me is that a whole group of authors who are entered into SPFBO will be reducing their books to 99p for 5 days. At last count there were well over 100 authors taking part. I shall post more about this tomorrow along with the links on where to buy etc. If you are a fantasy reader, this could be your chance to pick up some great bargains. I can’t wait to get some discounted books myself and help my fellow indie authors get some sales!

The last piece of news I’ll share is that I’ve requested a Book Bub placement for The Lost Sentinel. It was a last minute decision and I don’t expect to get anywhere this time but the good thing is I know how easy it is to send a request now. Hopefully over the next few months I’ll get some more reviews and one day I might get lucky enough to be accepted on Book Bub. It is a huge cost I can’t really afford, but sometimes you have to invest in yourself if you want to succeed.

Don’t forget to check out the big sale tomorrow.

And here’s the link to my Goodreads book page if you wanted to find out more about The Lost Sentinel and see some reviews. As always a free sample is available on Amazon and it is free to read if you are a Kindle Unlimited subscriber.

 

Latest book news #TheLostSentinel is available via #NetGalley #fantasy #ARC http://netgal.ly/oOfaE8

I am trying something for the very first time this month. I have submitted The Lost Sentinel to Netgalley! It is available to request for review for 1 month. I’m hoping to drive some extra interest in the trilogy having just released book 2 (The Sentinel’s Reign) on 29th June 2018.

If you have been wanting to try an exciting new fantasy series, why not take a look on NetGalley here.

A reminder of The Lost Sentinel’s blurb…

The magical island of Kalaya is dying, along with its Sentinel.
The Assembly controls Kalaya. Originally set up to govern, they now persecute those with magic and exile them to the Turrak Mountains.
Tei, a tailor’s daughter, has always hidden her magic. When her father’s old friend visits and warns them to flee to the mountains she must leave her old life behind.
On the journey, an attack leaves her father mortally wounded. He entrusts her into the care of two exiles, Rike and Garrick, and on his deathbed makes a shocking confession.
Struggling with self-doubt, Tei joins the exiles in the search for their lost Sentinel. But mysterious Masked Riders want the Sentinel too, and time, as well as hope, is running out.
How can Tei help the Kalayan people reunite and save the magic when their ignorance threatens to destroy them all?

Follow Tei’s journey through the magical land of Kalaya and the Astral Plane.

If you love character-based fantasy, then you’ll love The Lost Sentinel – Book 1 in the Silent Sea Chronicles trilogy.

You can check some reviews on the Goodreads book page

 

image kindle and pb

 

I would like to thank Giselle at Xpresso Book Tours for organising the Netgalley listing.

FYI – I will do a follow up post in the late summer to let you know how the listing went.

Belated mid-year review #amwriting #amreading

My big news is of course that The Sentinel’s Reign – Silent Sea Chronicles Book 2 is now published.

It’s available here in ebook (99p for a few more days only), paperback and free to read on kindle unlimited.

That’s the sales bit out the way.

In other news, The Lost Sentinel (Book 1) is entered into SPFBO 2018 competition and has been given to Lynn’s Books to judge, which is funny as I had planned to contact her to review the book this year. There is also a cover competition going on right now. Of course I love my cover, but there are lots of great covers in the running from my group of 30 so it will be interesting to see which ones get put through to the next stage.

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2018 has seen some major steps forward for me – landing a publishing contract with a Czech publisher for Visions of Zarua and having a full manuscript request from a UK agent for the same book. These are milestones I’ve been dreaming of, but we’ll have to see where they lead. I’m learning that everything takes time in the publishing world and you need to have a lot of patience!

 

My 2018 goals in review.

At the beginning of the year I set myself some goals (post here). Today I am revisiting them to see how I’ve done.

Writing

Publish book 2 The Sentinel’s Reign = Achieved.

Finish first draft of book 3 The Sentinel’s Alliance = Nope, but I have planned 2/3’s in a rough draft.

Look at WIP to see if I want to send to agents = Still to do. I have a draft almost finished that I would love to edit and polish and send to agents. I am also thinking on an idea I would like to try out on Wattpad. I have no idea how to go about this so I need to research it more.

Writing in general

Attend more writing events = I’ve attended 1 this year.

Contact book reviewers = I have done very well with this so far and have a new batch of reviewers to contact very soon. If you are a blogger interested in reviewing my books please use this contact form.

Learn more about marketing and get my books in front of more readers = I entered SPFBO (self published fantasy blog off) along with 299 other entrants, which will hopefully give The Lost Sentinel some much needed exposure. If you have read The Lost Sentinel, please consider leaving a review on Amazon / Goodreads, it helps with the ranking of the book though won’t have any affect on how far the book gets in the competition, that’s down to the judge of each group. I’ve run a mildly successful kindle countdown deal for The Lost Sentinel and it will go on Netgalley for a month starting 9th July.

Blogging

Tidy up blog, create banner and landing page = The blog is better but could still do with a tidy up, and I have a cool new banner. The landing page is something I still need to look into.

Blog more and focus on books about writing = I have reviewed a few writing books.

Feature more guest posts and get involved in more blog tours = I have featured Susan Leigh Noble and Ari Mehlen, but there is always room for more.

Lifestyle

Healthier diet and walk more = I lost almost 2 stone with Slimming World in 4 months, so that was a great success at the start of the year and I have been maintaining my target weight. I bought a treadmill and used that through winter but now it’s gathering dust.

Get more sleep = No chance! The hot weather and the book release don’t add up to a good night’s sleep. Maybe one day I’ll catch up on my beauty sleep.

Be more positive = I’m trying to be positive and take things as they come. For me being proactive helps, but when nothing comes of all the hard work I’ve invested it’s difficult to keep upbeat.

Reading

Read more fantasy = Yes.

Post more book reviews = Nope, I am way behind and have given up keeping my book review page up to date.

Read at least 35 books in 2018 = I’m trying but I’m behind schedule, total to date is 16.

My reading has been very slow. Editing and promotion has taken all my spare time and I’ve even struggled to find any audio books that hold my attention. My tbr pile grows almost daily and I am not making a dent in it.

I am still reading my book group choice Senlin Ascends (a previous SPFBO contestant, now traditionally published) even though I missed the group meeting last week due to a mix up with the day on my calendar! I believe it was enjoyed by all.

I did have a list of books I wanted to read and a couple of trilogies I wanted to finish, but for now I’m just going to wait and see what books take my fancy.

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What’s to come…

I hope to feature on a few blogs over the coming weeks and see some more reviews go up for The Lost Sentinel and The Sentinel’s Reign. Then I plan to throw myself into writing and make lots of progress. Fingers crossed anyway.

Because of this I will probably take the summer holidays off from blogging to focus on writing book 3 – The Sentinel’s Alliance. It worked well last year, though hopefully I can keep my hand in with a book review or two.

 

How’s your year shaping up?

 

Last plug for The Sentinel’s Reign – don’t forget to pick it up for 99p as I will be putting the price up at the end of the week. And add it to your Goodreads shelf.

publicity ebook and paperback

The Lost Sentinel is One today! #fantasy #epicfantasy

Happy Birthday to The Lost Sentinel – a year old today!

It has received some wonderful reviews on Goodreads and Amazon so I thought today would be a great day to share a few quotes.

 

Praise for The Lost Sentinel…

‘Wow, after reading this book I am emotionally drained… but in a good way.’ MPB – My Peacock Books

‘Surrounded by some wonderful characters who get under your skin almost from the start Tei sets out on a harrowing journey which is heartwarming, moving, and terrifying all at once.
…this story bowled me over, it was an absolutely outstanding epic fantasy and the kind of writing fantasy authors should be aspiring to.’ Claire – Brizzle Lass Books

‘The Lost Sentinel contains plenty of action, intrigue, and challenges throughout, making this a thrilling fantasy adventure indeed. It’s the sort of book I enjoyed reading while reclining in a comfy chair on the sunny front porch of my house. It didn’t overwhelm me with information, itty bitty details, or dull monologues, but rather it whisked me away to someplace magical, alluring, and dangerous.’ Angela – Pooled Ink Reviews

‘This is the second book of Suzanne Rogerson’s that I have read so I felt that I had some sort of idea of her writing style but wow has she raised the bar. What makes it even more exciting is that this is the first book in a trilogy so I know it is going to be one hell of an epic journey for both the characters and readers alike.’ Susan Hampson – Books from Dusk till Dawn 

‘The world building is incredible, it’s my favorite aspect of the book and I think it’s the best achieved. The descriptions are exceptional, without doubts.’ Sofia – A Book. A Thought. 

‘I love the characters in this story. From Tei, the reluctant seeker, to Garrick, the hunky hero, you get a broad range of personalities. One of my favorite things about this author is her ability to develop her characters in a way that feels natural and flows well within the story. In the same way she develops her fantasy world. There is no heavy world drawing passages but you get your knowledge of the way things work as a natural part of the story. And then you have the story itself which is full of surprising plot twists, moves at a really great pace, and draws the reader in from beginning to end. As with the author’s first book, I cannot say enough good things about this book.’ Jennifer – A line from a book.

‘Great beginning to a fantasy series, can’t wait to read the rest.’ Jaye Dawes – jenanita01

 

Why don’t you help me celebrate The Lost Sentinel’s birthday by checking the book out for yourself. You can download a free sample and read it for free if you are a Kindle Unlimited member.

Blurb

The magical island of Kalaya is dying, along with its Sentinel. With the Kalayan people turning their back on magic, can Tei help the exiles find their new Sentinel before it’s too late?

The Assembly controls Kalaya. Originally set up to govern, they now persecute those with magic and exile them to the Turrak Mountains.
Tei, a tailor’s daughter, has always hidden her magic. When her father’s old friend visits and warns them to flee to the mountains she must leave her old life behind.

On the journey, an attack leaves her father mortally wounded. He entrusts her into the care of two exiles, Rike and Garrick, and on his deathbed makes a shocking confession.

Struggling with self-doubt, Tei joins the exiles in the search for their lost Sentinel. But mysterious Masked Riders want the Sentinel too, and time, as well as hope, is running out.

How can Tei help the Kalayan people reunite and save the magic when their ignorance threatens to destroy them all?

Follow Tei’s journey through the magical land of Kalaya and the Astral Plane.

If you love character-based fantasy, then you’ll love The Lost Sentinel – Book 1 in the Silent Sea Chronicles trilogy.

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If you like what you’ve read so far, click the Universal Amazon link

And of course if you have read The Lost Sentinel, please consider leaving a review to help other readers discover my work.

Thank you in advance, and enjoy the rest of your weekend.

The Lost Sentinel 99p in the kindle countdown deal + pre-order The Sentinel’s Reign for 99p #fantasy #epicfantasy

I am running a Kindle Countdown Deal for Book 1 in the Silent Sea Chronicles. The Lost Sentinel is just 99p for one week only.

Book 2 The Sentinel’s Reign is also on a pre-order offer of just 99p. The price will go up after publication on 29th June 2018.

my book covers from amazon

That means right now you can pick up both books for just £1.98

Here’s the info about the first two books in the trilogy…

BOOK 1 – THE LOST SENTINEL

THE LOST SENTINEL COMPLETE (1)

The magical island of Kalaya is dying, along with its Sentinel. With the Kalayan people turning their back on magic, can Tei help the exiles find their new Sentinel before it’s too late?

The Assembly controls Kalaya. Originally set up to govern, they now persecute those with magic and exile them to the Turrak Mountains.

Tei, a tailor’s daughter, has always hidden her magic. But when her father’s old friend visits and warns them to flee to the mountains she must leave her old life behind.

On the journey, an attack leaves her father mortally wounded. He entrusts her into the care of two exiles, Rike and Garrick, and on his deathbed makes a shocking confession.

Struggling with self-doubt, Tei joins the exiles in the search for their lost Sentinel. But mysterious Masked Riders want the Sentinel too, and time, as well as hope, is running out.

How can Tei help the Kalayan people reunite and save the magic when their ignorance threatens to destroy them all?

Follow Tei’s journey through the magical land of Kalaya and the Astral Plane.

ORDER FOR 99p / 99c 1 week only

 

BOOK 2 – THE SENTINEL’S REIGN

The Sentinel's Reign ebook pic smaller

The new Sentinel’s reign is doomed to failure unless Tei can prevent the Kalayan people from plunging into war.

With the new Sentinel initiated and the magic restored on Kalaya, life is flourishing for Tei and the exiles. But Rathnor’s plans for war soon escalate and thwart any chance of peace.

Brogan’s position on the Assembly is uncertain as rumours circulate that he is an exile spy.

After an attempt on his life, Farrell is more determined than ever to build a home for his people on Stone Haven. But the council have their sights set on Kalaya and Farrell struggles to steer them from war.

As trouble brews within and outside forces gather against them, can the exiles keep their hold on the magic, or will this spell the end of Kalaya and its people?

JUST 99p / 99c TO PRE-ORDER A COPY NOW

 

Note – To those who pre-ordered The Sentinel’s Reign at the higher price of £2.99, please be assured you are covered by the Amazon price promise guarantee and will only be charged 99p on the publication date 29th June 2018.

 

 

And the winners of The Lost Sentinel giveaway are…

Thank you to those who entered my first ever Rafflecopter giveaway last week. Two winners have been randomly selected and I have contacted them this morning via email.

The winner of the signed paperback is Iri and the ebook is Freddie. Congratulations to both of you, check your emails for more details!

For those that missed out, The Lost Sentinel is going on sale for 1 week only as of 4th June 2018. I will be posting more about that next week.

In the meantime, have a great weekend everyone!

 

 

 

Updates giveaways and pre-order info #amwriting #indieauthor #fantasy

The first of my updates is on the appearance of my blog. I’ve finally been able to update the header with all three of my books. It’s a great feeling to see them altogether. The Cover Collection have done a wonderful job on all three covers and the banner.

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It’s officially 1 month before The Sentinel’s Reign is published – 29th June 2018, which is so exciting. I’ve just finished reading it through and have a couple of small changes to make before the ARC is ready to send out to reviewers. Please get in touch if you are interested.

Don’t forget you can already pre-order you copy here The Sentinel’s Reign

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There are just a few hours left to enter the giveaway to win a signed paperback or ebook of The Lost Sentinel. Please follow the link and enter up to 7 times.

Rafflecopter giveaway

Yesterday The Lost Sentinel received a brilliant review from Sofia – A Book. A Thought blog. She said; The world building is incredible, it’s my favorite aspect of the book and I think it’s the best achieved. The descriptions are exceptional, without doubts.

Please click on the review link to see what else she had to say in her 4 star review. 

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Finally as this is an update post, the latest on the Czech translation of Visions of Zarua is that it will be published in the Fall 2019! This is such an exciting time for me, and perhaps it will lead on to bigger and better things. I certainly hope so!

#Tuesdaybookblog 4 star #bookreview of The Lost Sentinel #fantasy

Today I’m really happy to share this 4 star review of The Lost Sentinel from Sofia on her blog A Book. A Thought.

via Double Short Reviews: The Lost Sentinel by Suzanne Rogerson & Freefall Summer by Tracy Barrett