Tag Archives: self published


1 May

I recently bought and inhaled the author’s “The Centurion’s Choice”, which is about two of the secondary characters in this book; it was a given I would then read this one.

Beware: loss of parents, all younger siblings, and the majority of the people in a settlement, due to an epidemic (see footnote 1); explicit sex, including one instance of coercion.

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“The Centurion’s Choice” by Sandra Schwab

19 Apr
A white man with dark hair, long enough to flutter in the breeze, wearing a

(Note: I’m publishing this review today as a placeholder–I’m still reading my #TRBChallenge book for April)

It has been a long time since I’ve read any of Dr Schwab’s work, despite having several titles in both the print and digital TBRs. The reading slump from hell started mid-2015 and didn’t really let up until recently. However, I saw her post a promotional poster for this novella on social media and was immediately intrigued.

I had forgotten how much I enjoy her writing.

Beware: explicit sex on the page; battle, injuries and death, a bit of swearing.

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Desert Phoenix, by Suzette Bruggeman

17 Apr
The cover for Desert Phoenix: A woman in early 20th Century standing on a patch of dry land, with some grasses about her feet, looking at the horizon in the background, where the sun is setting behind distant mountains, as the clouds run riotous with color. Between her and the mountains, stands a wooden structure, signaling the head of a mine.

I requested this ARC because the cover and title caught my eye; the blurb clinched the matter. I did not, however, expect the writing to be this good–I read the second half literally overnight. Who needs sleep?

Reader beware: illness and death, on page; rape of a child, on page; murder; violence; forced sterilization; a hanging. This is most certainly a love story with a HEA, but there’s too much tragedy and too much loss, and so, while it doesn’t fit within modern genre romance, it would have fit well with the sagas of the 70s and 80s– even though there is no purple prose whatsoever.

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“The Year of the Crocodile” by Courtney Milan

16 Sep
Cover for "The Year of the Crocodile"; a Chinese young woman stands against a young white man, looking up at him over her shoulder. His arms come around her as he looks into his eyes.

This very short story is part of the Cyclone Saga, set a year after Trade Me, and as the events in Hold Me take place.

Reader, beware: there’s a rather high rate of swearing for the actual word count, and there’s also a sex scene.

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