In The Soup This Week... Kelly Moran, Barbara Bretton, and KJ Charles
Soup Dish: on my mind
✽I'm not sure this actually rated as a kerfuffle, but a woman on Twitter sent around the text of an emailed review request she got, that just really made me angry. KJ Charles had a great response. I cannot believe the author in question had the nerve to tell bloggers that including a line similar to "I received a free book from the author in exchange for an honest review" is a "turn-off" and shouldn't be done. Although, strictly speaking, since she was only offering the book for a positive review, I guess you could say that "in exchange for an honest review" is not actually true. Hmmph. If there are any newbie blogger/reviewers out there reading, please never fall for bullshit like that, and please refuse any review request that is framed that way.
✽I really enjoyed this article over at Heroes and Heartbreakers by Kelly Moran, about how characters behave as therapists to other characters sometimes, or how authors and readers might also do that. It's an interesting take on how to execute a character arc. Makes me want to pick up something that she's written.
✽I'm incredibly tempted to try to read my way through all 101 of these Best Romances. Hmmm. Very very tempted.
✽Also, National Book Festival happened in Washington DC, and I completely missed it. Apparently this is the first year they've had anything about romance. It sounds like they had a lot of interesting bookish things across the board. And Buzz Aldrin! wow!
What I'm reading
✽Over the last two weeks, the book that consumed most of my reading attention was The Desert and the Blade, by SM Stirling. It's part of a long-running post-apocalyptic fantasy series. The series itself kind of waxes and wanes and meanders quite a bit, but every September I look forward to a little visit to this world. This particular book grabbed me pretty hard and I might actually do a full review.
✽I finished the Kim Harrison short story I mentioned, "Two Ghosts for Sister Rachel" from the Holidays are Hell anthology, which was quite nice. It was interesting to see Rachel as a teenager, still struggling with the debilitating illness which informed her character and character arc throughout the series.
✽Currently reading Barbara Bretton's Shore Lights, which I picked up as an Amazon freebie (still free as of this writing). Very emotional, and equal parts "women's fiction" to the romance: the mother-daughter relationship features as prominently as the romance, all set to the background of two close-knit, colorful, gossipy extended families. Enjoying it so far, but it's way up there on the divorcee-where-did-I-go-wrong angst scale.
That's it for today -- what are you reading? anything exceptional?