Book Review of Washed in the Water: Tales from the south by Nancy Hartney

Each week, read a #bookReview on WriteOnPUrpose.com by best selling author, speaker & Top #BookReviewer Ronda Del Boccio. This week it’s a collection of southern short stories called Washed in the Water by Nancy Hartney.

Welcome back to another Write On Purpose book review. Each week, I review a well-written book, highlighting what makes it good from the reader’s perspective and what writing skills and techniques make it an irresistible read. Thus, each review serves both writers and readers.

This week's excellent read is a collection of southern short stories called Washed in the Water: Tales from the South by Nancy Hartney

Washed in the Water: Tales from the South by Nancy Hartney

I like a good short story collection. Sometimes I want to read something that won't require a lot of time to read. Sometimes I don't want to dive into the world of a novel. Plus, I can sample an author and decide quickly whether I like their style.

Washed in the Water: Tales from the South contains 7 stories. Grab a glass of sweet tea and get ready to journey to the deep south into the lives of people who live and work hard.

5 Star Review Graphic

Read my Amazon 5 star review

 Vivid, Tight  Descriptions

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Book Review: Biographical Historical Novel No Paved Road to Freedom by Sharon Rushton

Each week, read a #bookReview on WriteOnPUrpose.com by best selling author, speaker & Top #BookReviewer Ronda Del Boccio. This week it’s a historical biographical novel called No Paved Road to Freedom by Sharon rushton

Welcome back to another Write On Purpose book review. Each week, I review a well-written book, highlighting what makes it good from the reader’s perspective and what writing skills and techniques make it an irresistible read. Thus, each review serves both writers and readers.

This week's excellent read is a historical biographical novel called No Paved Road to Freedom by Sharon Rushton.

A good book is aboiut the writer's craft and in equal measure enjoyment for the reader. This book has it all!

Here is the description of No Paved Road to Freedom from Amazon:

No Paved Road to Freedom by Sharon RushtonNo Paved Road To Freedom is a gripping and emotional story that humanizes the impact of communist occupation in Romania after World War II. It is relevant, it inspires, and it reminds us that freedom is precious. Based on a true story, it documents the loss of freedom, and the extraordinary courage of Cornel Dolana and his family as they pay an incredible price for resisting communism. Cornel makes up his mind to escape the oppression and uses his ingenuity to put his plan in place. His fortitude keeps him moving toward his goal, despite enduring enormous setbacks, brutality, and extreme outdoor elements that few humans could survive.

What makes No Paved Road to Freedom a good read? Continue reading "Book Review: Biographical Historical Novel No Paved Road to Freedom by Sharon Rushton"

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Writing Skills Book Review: Writing Fight Scenes by Rayne Hall

This is a #bookreview specifically for #writers and #authors of fiction who include battles in your stories. It’s Writing Fight Scenes by Rayne Hall, an excellent #writingresource to help improve your #writingskills #RayneHall

As an author, I read books about the craft of writing, publishing, book marketing and similar topics writers need.  Today, I'm reviewing an excellent book about writing battles.

Ronda Del Boccio holding Writing Fight Scenes by Rayne Hall

Have you ever been reading a good book but found yourself brought right out of the story by a ridiculous fight scene? I have.

One book I read is otherwise excellent, however, the author wrote a hand-to-hand combat scene in which a man bit out a woman's Adam's apple.

Wh-wh-wh-wha-???

In case you, like this author, don't know your anatomy, only men have that bobbing little apple-like protrusion. It's not possible for someone to bite a woman's (nonexistent) body part and ruin her vocal chords, leaving her with a permanently husky voice.

I've also read stories in which a tiny woman wields a battle axe. If you've never picked up one of these weapons, it's heavy and requires a solid wallop. Not something a tiny woman, or man for that matter, could manage.

I read a sword fight scene in which the warrior pulled a heavy, long sword from his back, when it would not be possible.

Feel free to share any battle blunders you've read in he comments. I'd love to read them, and I'm sujre others would as well!

Writing Fight Scenes by Rayne Hall is a top-notch resource for authors writing fight scenes. Chapters cover everything from true crime to were-creatures to nautical fights to fantasy to swordfight, and everything in between.

Here is the book description from Amazon:

Writing Fight Scenes by Rayne HallThis is the bestselling original by Rayne Hall, published in 2011 and updated in 2013.

Learn step-by-step how to create fictional fights which leave the reader breathless with excitement.

The book gives you a six-part structure to use as blueprint for your scene. It reveals tricks how to combine fighting with dialogue, which senses to use when and how, how to create a sense of realism, and how to stir the reader's emotions.

You'll decide how much violence your scene needs, what's the best location, how your heroine can get out of trouble with self-defence and how to adapt your writing style to the fast pace of the action.

There are sections on female fighters, male fighters, animals and weres, psychological obstacles, battles, duels, brawls, riots and final showdowns.
For the requirements of your genre, there is even advice on how to build erotic tension in a fight scene, how magicians fight, how pirates capture ships and much more.

You will learn about different types of weapons, how to use them in fiction, and how to avoid embarrassing blunders.

Please note: This book assumes that you have some fiction writing experience. You'll benefit most if you've already mastered the basics of the craft and want to learn specialist techniques. It is not recommend for absolute beginners.

The book uses British English.

I like how the book is structured, beginning with  what the author should consider before the fight  commences.  Then, various weapons have their own chapter.  Male VS female combatants, self defense, and psychological barriers take you deeper into planning. Finally, the book moves into writing skills such as pacing, dialogue, making the reader care and creating erotic tension.

The first decision is whether your scene is to be "gritty or entertaining." Each style has a different presentation on the page.

Chapter Two is all about location.  Different battles lend themselves to different weapons. This chapter helps you decide upon staging.

The third chapter is one of my favorites, because it gives a six-step method for weaving the fight scene into the story. It's not just about the battle.

You'll be able to pick and choose the chapters to read when planning your battle. If you're not sure which polearm or sword to incorporate, you'll get the basics here. That will help if you need to do ore research.

I love that Rayne Hall includes blunders to avoid in each chapter. This helps the author avoid rookie mistakes that ruin the story's credibility.

Read my Amazon 5-star Review of Writing Fight Scenes.

About Rayne Hall

Rayne Hall writes fantasy and horror fiction. She is the author of over fifty books in different genres and under different pen names, published by twelve publishers in six countries, translated into several languages. Her short stories have been published in magazines, e-zines and anthologies.

After living in Germany, China, Mongolia and Nepal, she has settled in a small Victorian seaside town in southern England. Rayne holds a college degree in publishing management and a masters degree in creative writing. Over three decades, she has worked in the publishing industry as a trainee, investigative journalist, feature writer, magazine editor, production editor, page designer, concept editor for non-fiction book series, anthology editor, editorial consultant and more. Outside publishing, she worked as a museum guide, apple
picker, tarot reader, adult education teacher, trade fair hostess, translator and belly dancer.

She is the editor of the Ten Tales anthologies (themed short story collections). Her books on the writing craft are bestsellers.

 Connect with Author Rayne Hall

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Buy Writing Fight Scenes on Amazon

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About Ronda Del Boccio

Ronda Del Boccio is an award-winning and best Click for Member Home Pageselling author of both fiction and nonfiction. She tells transformational tales and helps visionary authors turn their dreams and imaginings into published books. See and order Ronda's books on Amazon.

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PS Want to republish this review?

I am delighted for you to repost this review on your blog or website. You are most welcome to republish this review following standards established by best practice and copyright law. This is true of any blog post, by the way.

Here are the guidelines that help you play nicely and give credit where it is due.

  • You must use the permalink for the specific post, which is the direct article link, also called the original article source.
  • You must include my byline and author information, or I shall come after you
  • Following these guidelines helps my website traffic as well as yours. Thank you for playing nicely.

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Book Review of Thriller The Geneva Decision by Seeley James

Each week, read a #bookReview on WriteOnPUrpose.com by best selling author, speaker & Top #BookReviewer Ronda Del Boccio. This week it’s a #thriller called The Geneva Decision by Seeley James, about a soccer star turned owner-operator of a billion dollar company.

Welcome back to another Write On Purpose book review. Each week, I review a well-written book, highlighting what makes it good from the reader’s perspective and what writing skills and techniques make it an irresistible book. Thus, each review serves both writers and readers.

This week's excellent read is The Geneva Decision by Seeley James, a thriller about an athlete embarking on a new and dangerous lifestyle.

Like any good thriller, the lead character Pia Sabel is both flawed and larger-than-life in equal measure. That's part of what makes thrillers exciting to those who enjoy them.

Read the book description of The Geneva Decision on Amazon

Cover of The Geneva Decision by Seeley JamesPia Sabel plays to win.

Until a few weeks ago, she was an international soccer star. But now she’s taken the helm of her billionaire father’s private security company, and she’s playing against a whole new set of opponents – the kind who shoot to kill.

On her first day on the job, Pia’s client is assassinated in front of her. There’s no time for training, so Pia must trust her instincts and athletic skills to unravel the complicated maze of money laundering and piracy that will take her from Swiss mansions to the jungles of Cameroon.

Her battle-hardened employees suspect she’s just a spoiled rich girl with a mean corner kick. But Pia’s got some unexpected moves of her own. Will they be enough to bring her team through its mission?

Read my Amazon review.

What makes The Geneva Decision an exciting thriller?

Continue reading "Book Review of Thriller The Geneva Decision by Seeley James"

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Book Review of Women of Washington Avenue, a Hen Lit Romance by Linda Apple

This is a book review of Women of Washington Avenue, a hen lit romance by Linda Apple. Each Tuesday, read a book review on WriteOnPUrpose.com. I delve deeper in these than I do for what I post on Amazon

Welcome back to another Write On Purpose book review, the first of 2015! Each week I review a well-written book, highlighting what makes it good from the reader's perspective and what writing skills and techniques make it an irresistible read.Thus, each review serves both writers and readers.

This week's excellent read is a "hen lit" romance called Women of Washington Avenue by Linda Apple.

Read my 5-star Amazon review of Women of Washington Avenue here.

Before I go on, you may be wondering...

What is "Hen Lit"?

A few years ago, "chick lit" became a "thing" - a genre. Books about  and for women, particularly younger women, flooded the market.

Then the more mature ladies said, "Hey, what about us? We're not sprig chickens, but we are still interesting women living vibrant lives." Hen lit came from that evolution. Hen lit showcases interesting women in and beyond middle age.

Women of Washington Avenue

Women of Washington Avenue tells the story of several unstoppable and very cool women of the south who all live on the same street, their lives weaving together through the years.

Here is the description of Amazon:

Wome Of Washington Avenue by Linda Apple CoverOn Washington Avenue in Moonlight, Mississippi, four friends, single and over fifty, find themselves in the age-old conundrum--they're too old to be young, but way too young to be old.

All of them are ready for another chance at love. But when that chance comes to each of them, it brings startling surprises and secrets that threaten their hopes for love.

 

This is an uplifting "feel good" book. Yes, there is conflict, as in life, but it is not overly intense. The women are all over fifty and, as anyone I know over that age, living a full and vibrant life and never giving up on themselves.

I love how well Linda Apple develops each of the women. THey are most definitely distinct, the result of an experienced writer accustomed to revealing character.

Not only are these "hens" each over fifty, most of them are full bodied ladies. Only one bean pole in this book, Ava who has succumbed to her time in New  York to be tiny until returning to her home in the South puts some meat back on her bones.

I personally find it refreshing to read (and, since I am an author, write) about women who don't count every calorie and only eat five bites of food at a time. Brava! Unlike what the media would have you believe, luscious women can indeed attract a man.

I love one of Avalee's lines to Jemma: "We need all the sass we can get at our age."

I say we need all te sass we can get at ANY age! I've had that quality all my life, miuch to my mother's chagrin, I'm sure.

I love that each of the ladies has a chance to tell part of the tale. Avales's segments are in first person, the others in third. I've read a few books like this recently, where narration shifts between first and third person depending who tells that part of the story.

The advantage for an author is you get to play with different storytelling methods within the same work. You're not locked in to only first or only third person narration. This method provides variety for the reader.

Linda Apple does an excellent job of remaining in the head of the narrator without losing focus and straying. If you're a "green" (budding) author, struggling with staying in one narrator's head, reading this book provides guidance for you to study.

The romances

If you've read my other reviews, you'll know I don't tend to read a lot of romances, particularly in the general fiction category. This book has a number of budding relationships.

Many mainstream romances involve explosive outbursts and love-hate relationships. This one not so much. There are secret pasts, startling revelations and a couple of fights, but there is no "contrived hyper-drama", as I call it.

If you are a budding romance author, realize that you don't have to create false conflicts in order to tell an interesting story of the growth of a relationship. Out here in real life, not everyone goes off the deep end because you tagged them in a Facebook photo or forgot to pick up the dry cleaning.

No need to exaggerate drama in romances. That's one of the things that makes me cringe about the genre as a whole...too much fabricated conflict.  If you want gritty, explosive fighting, this book is not for you. if you're after something hopeful, or wish to write hopeful books, Women of Washington Avenue is an excellent study.

Life

Women of Washington Avenue doesn't rea like real life, but life as we would wish it to be. Men say the right things and act lovingly toward their women. Conflicts find happy resolution. Characters reveal burdens and find supportive understanding.

Though the book is over 300 pages, it is a fast and fun read. I read the Kindle edition and didn't realize it was that long until I was looking up the various details to include in this review.  Women of Washington Avenue is another excellent Wild Rose Press book.

Order Women of Washington Avenue from Amazon.com, Kindle or print.

Order Women of Washington Avenue from the Wild Rose Press site.

Want to republish this review?

I am delighted for you to repost this review on your blog or website. You are most welcome to republish this review following standards established by best practice and copyright law. This is true of any blog post, by the way.

Here are the guidelines that help you play nicely and give credit where it is due.

  • You must use the permalink for the specific post, which is the direct article link, also called  the original article source.
  • You must include my byline and author information, or I shall come after you.
  • Following these guidelines helps my website traffic as well as yours. Thank you for playing nicely.

About Ronda Del Boccio

Ronda Del Boccio is an award-winning and best selling author of both fiction and nonfiction. She tells transformational tales and helps visionary authors turn their dreams and imaginings into published books. See and order Ronda's books on Amazon.

Join Ronda's readers for free stories, sneak peeks at her next books and more at WriteOnPUrpose.com/read

If you are an author

Want your book reviewed?

If you are an author or publisher desiring a review, here is everything you need to know:

Each Tuesday, read a book review on WriteOnPUrpose.com. I delve deeper in these than I do for what I post on Amazon

Focusing on what makes a good read, these reviews benefit authors and readers alike. Each contains helpful hints to help authors make their books more compelling.

Before posting here, I first write a review on Amazon, and I am an Amazon Top Reviewer; read my reviews at WriteOnPurpose.com/reviews.

If you are an author or publisher wanting a book review, go to my Review Request Page at WriteOnPurpose.com/reviewrequest and complete the form.

You will need to provide a digital copy of your book and be willing to accept my honest review or the possibility that I may choose not to review your book at all. My aim is to showcase good writing, and I won't know if your book measures up until I read it.

Please share this review all over the social web!

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Ronda Del Boccio
#1 best selling author, speaker, and Amazon Top Reviewer

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Book Review: Show Dog Sings the Blues by Devin O’ Branagan

This is a book review of Show Dog Sings the Blues by Devin O’Branagan, a tale of mistaken canine identity that leads a show dog into a whole new world. Gain insights to help authors as well as comments about the book.

Show Dog Sings the Blues is a tail...tale of mistaken identity that's gone to the dogs.

Here is the description from Amazon:

Show Dog Sings the Blues cover - Devin O- BranaganIn an unfortunate case of mistaken identity, pampered show dog Talisman is switched with a cowdog and has to work on a ranch for the day. By the time her harrowing adventure is over, she is in desperate need of a massage, a session with her Reiki Master, a consultation with the pet psychic, a full grooming, and a pedicure. However, along the way she learns powerful lessons—including the discovery that she’s so much more than just another pretty face. Hilarious and touching, a tale for dog lovers everywhere! This short novella is a spinoff from the chick-lit novel "Red Hot Liberty" and is told from the dog's perspective. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to Australian Shepherd Rescue: www.AussieRescue.org - Learn more about this book at www.CanineChickLit.com

While I have not read the novel from which this novella is a spin-off, I am an animal lover, and I've read a few of Devin O' Branagan's other books.

This book is definitely more than a puff tale about a pampered dog who gets to experience a whole new life. Talisman faces unexpected dangers and experiences character development.

Based on Real People - with Fur

The two featured canines are based upon 2 of the author's former dogs. She shares their story and a link to pictures of them as well as those of other critters who feature prominently in her novels.

It gives a chance for readers to learn something new about their favorite characters. It also gives you a chance to build a stronger reader base and sell more books.

If you're an author, consider how you could adapt this for your work. Maybe you don't have dog or cat bases for your heroes, but you might have interesting places, works of art, songs, or similar. It's easy enough to make a page for them.

Critters are Characters Too

Even an anthropomorphized dog is a character, and the reader needs he hero to change. If your book features a dog or an alien or other non-human, that person still needs to have a road of trials.

This means that even if your character isn't human, she or he needs to grow, face challenges, or otherwise learn something. It's part of all stories, including the movies.

Spin Spin Spin-Off

Writing a novella that relates to a novel is brilliant. What a great idea for any fiction author. Show Dog Sings the Blues is a spin-off of the Red Hot series, which you can find at RedHotNovela.com.

O'Branagan wisely includes that link at the back of the book. The link takes you to a link on her main website, DevinWrites.com.

Multi Genre Authors

As a multi-genre author, O'Branagan has pages on her site relevant to each. This makes it easy to funnel the right readers to the appropriate series.

Keep this in mind for your own work if you, as do she and I, write a variety of stories.

Order the book:

You can read my 5-star review of Show Dog Sings the Blues on Amazon.

Order Show Dog Sings the Blues from Amazon.

And as Maddie the ranch dog would say,

Morde diem, which means "Bite the Day."

Each Tuesday, read  a book review on WriteOnPUrpose.com. I delve deeper in these than I do for what I post on Amazon

Focusing on what makes a good read, these reviews benefit authors and readers alike. Each contains helpful hints to help authors make their books more compelling.

If you are an author desiring a book review, go to my Review Request Page at WriteOnPurpose.com/reviewrequest and complete the form. You will need to provide a digital copy of your book and be willing to accept my honest review.

Follow your B.L.I.S.S.

Ronda Del Boccio

#1 best selling author, speaker, and Amazon Top Reviewer

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