Song of Secrets: How Fiction Helps us Cope


I have to write a review, and I’m so tired. There’s a point at which every body needs a break, and mine is reaching it’s breaking point.
I’ve grown wise enough to recognize the signs, and even gone so far as to warn people, because taking a break isn’t possible this time.

The world is on my shoulders
The universe is inside me
and I am a dreamweaver.

No time for breaks.

The books are amazing & I’ll tell you all about it after I rejuvenate by eating Delissio garlic bits & hot chocolate from Tim Hortons.

Yes, GASP I am supporting evil corporate enterprises, and huge big name businesses connected to all kinds of horrid and awful things.
Guess what?
I don’t care. Not today. Not lately.
I’m a hypocrite and a cretin maybe, but no one is perfect, and in order to do everything, I need something to be easy.
Delissio & Tim Hortons was my easy choice today.

Angry kitty says: Screw off.
Angry kitty says: Screw off.

 

There is a point early on in the book where Theo  & Gabe are both running from their respective demons. It was interesting to read how they ran differently. These characters aren’t flat, and they’re not all the same either.

Song of Secrets is about the oddballs finding each other, and figuring out that everyone has a place in the universe. The homeless, the unwanted, the queer and the broken. My dad used to tell me:

“I hate to break it to you, but life is hard, sweetheart.”

 

Philosocat appears again
Philosocat appears again

It is, and it is for everyone, supernatural powers and all. . .

Or were those metaphors for the alarmingly high co-mobid rates of mental illness in our homeless population today?

Did you know that an large percentage of the homeless population across Canada & the United States are under the age of 24? Most of them have been in and out of a child car/welfare system and moved multiple times, suffered multiple traumas, and many flee violent and broken homes every day. Would you be surprised if I told you that many of them identify as First Nations, Aboriginal or Metis and a overwhelming number of them identify as LGBTQ2S?

Whether it’s a happy mistake or not, it’s poignant that the children today running from their demons whatever they may be are the future. Song of Secrets is written for young adults, but it’s a book parents and well everyone, should read. It’s also a fun paranormal world you can easily relate to with out reading much into it – if you want. Or, you can be the great parent/nerd/bookworm that you are and have a really awesome educational conversation with your child(s).

Or, you can do like me and read it to escape/remind you what inspires you to do the work every day.
Or, you can do like me and read it to escape behind the proverbial book shelf of perfect hidey holes.

No one told me it would remind me why I keep doing the work I do every day even if it is really hard, exhausting and ridiculously dramatic for one reason or another.

It takes a good book to do that. (read all the way to the end, there’s a surprise for you…)

About the Book – About the Author – Prizes!!!

Welcome to another exciting publishing house spotlight tour from Novel Publicity. Join us as two new titles from Rachel Calish–we’re calling them the Calish Couple—tour the blogosphere in a way that just can’t be ignored. And, hey, we’ve got prizes!

About the prizes: Who doesn’t love prizes? You could win either a $50 Amazon gift card, an autographed copy of Song of Secrets by Tate Hallaway and Rachel Calish, or an autographed copy of its tour mate, The Demon Gabriella by Rachel Calish. Here’s what you need to do…

  1. Enter the Rafflecopter contest
  2. Leave a comment on my blog

That’s it! One random commenter during this tour will win a $25 gift card. Visit more blogs for more chances to win–the full list of participating bloggers can be found HERE. The other $25 gift card and the 3 autographed books will be given out via Rafflecopter. You can find the contest entry form linked below or on the official Calish Couple tour page via Novel Publicity. Good luck!

About the book: Sing a song of secrets …
A shape-shifter with a penchant for breaking and entering …
A homeless boy struggling with hallucinations that could turn out to be all too real …
A monster in need of a rescue …
And a mathematical genius with a real demon of a mother …
Fate draws Theo, Gabe, Erin and Kitty to a place they jokingly call “The School for Wayward Demons.” There they learn that sinister forces threaten to invate the city of San Francisco and plot to overthrow the powers that be. Now they must choose whom to trust: the witches, the demon, or the Shaitans. Or each other.Get Song of Secrets through Amazon.

About the authors: Tate Hallaway leads a double life. By day, she’s Lyda Morehouse, a mild-mannered science fiction author of the Shamus and Philip K. Dick award-winning AngeLINK series. By night, she’s the bestselling para- normal romance and urban fantasy writer, Tate Hallaway. She’s written and published over a dozen novels (five as Lyda and nine as Tate), and together her two identities have over a decade of professional publishing experience.

Connect with Tate on her website, Twitter,or GoodReads..

 

Rachel Calish lives in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota because it’s so cold you just have to sit inside and write novels. She obtained her Master of Fine Arts in Writing degree by writing stories about sexy demons. A fan of games of all kinds, you can find her playing anything from the lat- est video game releases to Checkers with half the pieces missing. Under the name Rachel Gold, she writes LBGTQ Young Adult fiction.
Connect with Rachel on her website, Facebook, Twitter,or GoodReads..

Learn more about Song of Secrets‘s tour mate HERE.

 

 

Most days I’m lucky enough to have a ‘moment of clarity’ start out looking like this:

but end up feeling like this (only after a good book of course):


What made Calish & Hallaway’s Song of Secrets a great read that helps you cope with day to day life?

It’s really hard to tell this was written by two people, and maybe that’s a reason for the next point.
The characters were unique, well rounded & well developed. Each one had their quirks and challenges, but they all shone through the narrative.
There were few to no editing/spelling errors which always makes for a smoother read
The book allows you to visualize day to day problems as demons, monsters, and whatever other creatures you can come up with. Then beat them and out smart them at their own games.
The paranormal world provides just enough escapism that a reader can travel to another world to get a break from this one.

Entrevoir: It’s not up to you


Plan for tomorrow
(or sometime in the future)

but, really
chances are
it will all come crashing down
any way.

not, up to
you.

Luminis Books aims to be a thought provoking publisher. Entrevoir is by one of the owners, and reviewing Entrevoir speaks to the heart of Luminis Books.

That’s my review for now. See you on Monday, … If you know me, you know what profanity that statement is followed with.

Monday’s. . . have to love them.

This review won’t be long, however, I think that actually may say a lot in this case.

I don’t know if it was the ‘right’ time for me to read this book or not. I loved the astrological and metaphysical aspects, but Entrevoir was also like looking into a mirror.
A cold, black, dark, cracked mirror. . . with a stranger staring back, that you know is your own reflection. I’ll leave you to ponder which character’s personality aspects I refer to, and if that’s cause to read the book (you creepy, creepy people :P ) than so be it.

An even better reason to read this book is because it is simply an amazing piece of literature. It’s abstract, and yet grounded in reality. It has the most beautiful descriptions of what can only imagine as enlightenment. It is over-whelming to read, and feels as though the edge of the abyss meets the an inevitable choice between life & death, neither of which is really a choice.

Reading Entrevoir is like opening the gates of purgatory & the universe all at once.

The title I think is perfect, and I hope (and I will assume) not a mistake. You can check out the other blogger today’s Bri’s post here where there’s a great definition of the word and an even more amazing review of the book.

Thought provoking is only one way to describe the universe that unfolds within it’s pages.

About the Book – About the Author – Prizes!!!

Welcome to another exciting publishing house spotlight tour from Novel Publicity. Join us as three new titles from Luminis Books–we’re calling them the Luminis Triplex Tour—tour the blogosphere in a way that just can’t be ignored. And, hey, we’ve got prizes!

About the prizes: Who doesn’t love prizes? You could win either of two $25 Amazon gift cards, an autographed copy of Entrevoir by Chris Katsaropoulos, or an autographed copy of its tour mates, Along the Wayby Jacqueline Kolosov or The Possibility of Snow by Al Riske. Here’s what you need to do…

  1. Enter the Rafflecopter contest
  2. Leave a comment on my blog

That’s it! One random commenter during this tour will win a $25 gift card. Visit more blogs for more chances to win–the full list of participating bloggers can be found HERE. The other $25 gift card and the 3 autographed books will be given out via Rafflecopter. You can find the contest entry form linked below or on the official Luminis Triplex tour page via Novel Publicity. Good luck!

About the book:  The unveiling of a new work of art by Jacob Marsteller is typically one of the most highly anticipated events in the international art scene—but not this time. Jacob’s new piece is a labyrinth of gossamer fabric perched on the peak of a mountain called Entrevoir in a remote corner of the south of France. It looks as if nobody except Jacob’s teenage children and a few neighbors from the village will bother to show up at the gallery. As Jacob finishes dressing for the party, he and his wife Marya begin to argue. She warned him that moving from the vibrant art scene of New York to a tiny village in the middle of nowhere would be a fatal mistake for his career. As she turns her back to him and walks down the stairs, Jacob tells her there was a reason he had to come here to create this piece—and that’s when Jacob’s whole world begins to unravel. Without realizing what is happening, he is lifted out of his body and taken to another dimension, where he becomes the watcher, the witness, and experiencer of lives he lived six decades ago and thousands of years ago, on other planets and as the highest forms of life. In the span of one instant and over the course of millions of years, Jacob comes to understand that he is not his body, he is not his mind, and he is not even his soul. By the end of the amazing unveiling of Jacob’s true self, he will experience the greatest transfiguration any human being has ever known: the realization of the ultimate nature of human life, and of spirit itself.
Get Entrevoir through Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

About the author: </strong Chris Katsaropoulos is the author of more than a dozen titles, including two novels, Fragile and Antiphony. He has traveled extensively in Europe and North America, and enjoys collecting books and music. His collection of poetry, Complete Knowing, published by Luminis Books, is coming in Fall, 2014.
Connect with Chris on his website, Facebook, Twitter,or GoodReads..

Luminis Books was launched in January, 2010 by husband and wife team Tracy Richardson and Chris Katsaropoulos with a mission to publish thought-provoking literary fiction for children and adults. We publish what we love: Meaningful Books That Entertain. Our award-winning books engage and inform readers and explore a wide range of topics from love and relationships, teen sexual assault and homelessness to string theory, consciousness, and the Universal Energy Field.
Luminis Books is a proudly independent publisher located in Carmel, IN.

Learn more about Entrevoir‘s tour mates HERE.

EMBED CODE can be found at http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/YzE3YzI0YTkzYTJkODQ0ODQxZDUwNTUwMTQ3OTkxOjE1Ng==/?

The Possibility of Snow in July


Today, back in blog like fashion, I’ll be reviewing The Possibility of Snow by Al Riske. I reviewed Sabrina’s Window for a previous tour, and was really looking forward to reading another of his works.

The Possibility of Snow is definitely unlike Sabrina’s Window in every way, and actually makes me like Riske’s writing MUCH more. Of Sabrina’s Window, I said this:

Luminis always seems to capture books & authors that on the surface may appear to be normative, and just another book in the genre. What I’ve learned, time and time again is that each book is quite unique whether its in writing style, or plot. This one was no exception.

Luminis really is like that – this work was no exception either, and at just under 100 pages, it was a super quick read. It was also SUPER intense.

If I had to pick one word to describe the way I felt reading The Possibility of snow it would be – uncomfortable.

Uncomfortable – because I saw more than a little of my university self in both Neil and Steve.

Uncomfortable –  because often there is no real way to know if you’ve helped someone or made it all worse.

Uncomfortable – because the brutality of reality emerges and smacks you in a face a number of times.

By mid-way through the book I decided someone was going to die – I wasn’t sure who, but the book was like reading a the details of a train wreck waiting to happen.

There are so many important topics addressed in this book through dialogue. While it is a great way to start talking about a tough subject, I would have loved to know some of the lesser characters like Morrissey more, and I think expanding this to a full length novel would bring the other characters to life. The Possibility of Snow reads like a vignette into Neil & Steve’s lives, and focuses almost entirely on their relationship without developing who they are as people outside the relationship.

However, that focus is totally intentional, and clearly moves the story forward.

This book leaves me torn wanting more of the back story & more character development. The ending was brutal, cold & honest, and the most perfect of two possible endings I could think of. There’s a couple sentences in the description of the book that deserve a second read before you jump into this book:

Steve is eccentric, slightly paranoid, and too perceptive for his own good. He knows the difference between what people say and what they do. Neil is reflective, sincere, and not as together as he seems. There’s not much he’s sure of anymore. They know each other very well and understand each other not at all.

The dichotomy of Steve & Neil is evident throughout the novel. I think that ‘slightly’ paranoid is an understatement regarding Steve, but for much of the book, Neil seems VERY well put together, and like he’s trying to make choices that are right for him without knowing quite how to do so. In the end, you may feel both a sense of loss and peace, but also anger. Whatever your reaction to this work, it will be visceral.

Other snowy books to read that deal with death, suicide, a journey & choices:

Snow Crash – Neil Stephenson

The Snow Walker – Farley Mowat

The Snow Queen – Joan D. Vinge

About the Book – About the Author – Prizes!!!

Welcome to another exciting publishing house spotlight tour from Novel Publicity. Join us as three new titles from Luminis Books–we’re calling them the Luminis Triplex Tour—tour the blogosphere in a way that just can’t be ignored. And, hey, we’ve got prizes!

About the prizes: Who doesn’t love prizes? You could win either of two $25 Amazon gift cards, an autographed copy of The Possiblity of Snow by Al Riske, or an autographed copy of its tour mates, Entrevoir by Chris Katsaropoulos or Along the Wayby Jacqueline Kolosov. Here’s what you need to do…

  1. Enter the Rafflecopter contest
  2. Leave a comment on my blog

That’s it! One random commenter during this tour will win a $25 gift card. Visit more blogs for more chances to win–the full list of participating bloggers can be found HERE. The other $25 gift card and the 3 autographed books will be given out via Rafflecopter. You can find the contest entry form linked below or on the official Luminis Triplex Tour tour page via Novel Publicity. Good luck!

pbcvr.snowfrtAbout the book:  An engaging, lyrical, and, at times, disturbing novel, The Possibility of Snow tells the story of a once-promising friendship that dissolves into antagonism. Steve and Neil room together at a small college in New England and soon become fast friends, until things go strangely wrong. Steve is eccentric, slightly paranoid, and too perceptive for his own good. He knows the difference between what people say and what they do. Neil is reflective, sincere, and not as together as he seems. There’s not much he’s sure of anymore. They know each other very well and understand each other not at all.
Get The Possiblity of Snow through Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

Al RiskeAbout the author:  Al Riske grew up in the Pacific Northwest and has worked as a newspaper reporter, magazine editor, and ghostwriter. His short stories have appeared in Beloit Fiction Journal, Pindledyboz, Switchback, and Blue Mesa Review, where his story “Pray for Rain” won the review’s 2008 fiction prize. His second novel, Faint Promise of Rain (Luminis Books) is due out in the spring of 2015. He now lives in California with his wife, Joanne, and their dog, Bodie.
Connect with Al on his website, Facebook, Twitter,or GoodReads..

Luminis Books was launched in January, 2010 by husband and wife team Tracy Richardson and Chris Katsaropoulos with a mission to publish thought-provoking literary fiction for children and adults. We publish what we love: Meaningful Books That Entertain. Our award-winning books engage and inform readers and explore a wide range of topics from love and relationships, teen sexual assault and homelessness to string theory, consciousness, and the Universal Energy Field. Luminis Books is a proudly independent publisher located in Carmel, IN.

Learn more about The Possibility of Snow‘s tour mates HERE, and enter the Rafflecopter contests HERE.