My Favorite Reviews for the Akasha Series

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As a self-published author for over five years now, I have started to avoid looking at reviews. Before, I hung on every word. I swelled with pride or sunk into despair–sometimes all in the same day–depending on readers written opinions of my books. Pretty soon, the roller coaster ride of emotion began to interfere with my writing, so I stopped looking at reviews. Surfing the net this morning, I ran across a review. One thing led to the next and before I knew it I was reading them all. To my surprise, it was quite the uplifting ride, and perhaps just what I needed to get over my writing slump I am currently in with my new series. Below are my favorites for The Akasha Series, each linked to the original post on Amazon. If you haven’t finished the series already, I hope these reviews can entice you!

By Iris:
“I loved this series from beginning too end. A magical, ecologically focused adventure with a strong but human heroine and a villain you can actually hate… And then some. Between screwed up love interest, being forced into a life she’s unsure about, and surviving one attack after another, Kaitlin Alder is both relatable and someone to look up to and grow with.”

and

“I’d like to say it’s for everyone, but I don’t think so. I think it’s for women trying to find themselves or learning to be strong and brave. It deals with issues like abuse, and giving birth, and falling in love. But yes it’s all of that is wrapped up in honing magical elemental power, saving the world (from an ecological level and bringing awareness) to war.”

By Carolyn:

“I thoroughly enjoyed this series. Their mix of romance, magic and earthly powers was extremely well woven. Without each of these components, this would be just another romance without the heat and passion in a belief that we owe the Earth for our very survival.”

By Jane:

“For eco-aware folks, Wiccans, and tree huggers alike, this is an environmental aware series wrapped in fantasy and carried by our imagination into the reality of today’s world.”

By Kristi on Book 4, ‘Earth’:

“This book was my most and least favorite of the series…I always feel that way about the end… but it was so DARK! Kaitlyn goes all G.I. Jane in this book. Infiltrate and destroy. I knew the book wouldn’t be all sunshine and rainbows in the end but would have never expected for it to turn out this way… I had always hoped she would burn out her powers and her and Micah would ride off into the sunset with Bee. Fat chance of that happening I know, but a girl can dream right? Any way all I can say it the very last page brought a tear to my eye.”

As of today, here is my Amazon review breakdown:

The Akasha Series:
Water, Book One: 3.6 Stars, 200 customer review
Air, Book Two: 4.6 Stars, 53 customer reviews
Fire, Book Three: 4.4 Stars, 31 customer reviews
Earth, Book Four: 4.4 Stars, 42 customer reviews
Akasha, The Complete Saga: 4.5 Stars, 32 customer reviews

The Painted Maidens Series:
The Rising, Book One: 4.2 Stars, 72 customer reviews
The Betrayed, Book Two: 4.7 Stars, 9 customer reviews
The Taking, Book Three: 4.8 Stars, 14 customer reviews
The Falling, The Prequel: (no reviews – guess I need to start advertising this one!)

And let’s not forget my vampire indulgence!

The Kindred Curse Anthology: 4.1 Stars, 12 customer reviews

Did you know I have a few other works published in conjunction with fellow authors?

Polaris Awakening, 4.5 Stars, 2 customer reviews
The Lost Locket of Lahari Anthology, 3.5 Stars, 2 customer reviews
Forbidden Future, 3.5 Stars, 10 customer reviews

Happy Reading and please don’t forget to leave your own reviews!

 

7 Tips on Writing a Review

I wrote this post a while ago, but have procrastinated in posting it. Truth is – I looooove reviewers. All of them. Book bloggers, wannabe book bloggers, occasional readers…my mother-in-law.  As an Indie author, I am extremely grateful for any review posted of my work, good or bad. Both of which I’ve had my fair share of lately. The fact that someone took the time to read my book is incredible. When they go one step further and share their opinion of my writing with the rest of the world, I am ecstatic.

Just to be clear, a bad review really does sting deep down inside. But after the initial blow, I come to appreciate them. They can provide constructive feedback and they offer a certain authenticity to the book. Besides, any publicity is better than no publicity…right? In fact, reviews I’ve read of other books rant and rave about the decisions a character made. Often, this can mean the reader became emotionally involved, and that is a good thing.

But there are reviews, and then there are good reviews. In my perfect world, this is how reviews would be done:

  1. Be honest, and write the review in your voice.
  2. Don’t start with the books blurb.  On sites such as Goodreads or Amazon, chances are the reader just read the blurb – they don’t need it repeated.  I do see the value in book bloggers including the blurb first on their site, however the review on your site doesn’t need to be a straight cut and paste into Goodreads.
  3. Start with the good.  Many of the reviews on my book start with the bad.  And don’t get me wrong – do include everything you want to say, just say something nice first.  On many sites, just the first few lines of the review is shown unless the reader clicks to expand.  That means when they are just skimming through all the reviews (which is very often what I do), only the first few lines have a chance to make an impression.
  4. Do say something nice.  The book has a pretty cover, the main character’s name is awesome, the author has good use of punctuation.  Pick one.  There has to be something nice you can say – especially if you finished the entire book.  To be honest, a review filled with snide or snarky remarks and nothing at all good to say will often be dismissed by your audience.
  5. Be a grown-up about it.  And this goes both ways – I’m looking at YOU, authors!  Chances are, at some point you are going to write a review that an author or someone else won’t appreciate.  If they choose to respond in a negative way, then they chose poorly.  Be the bigger person – don’t feed the fire.  Let it go; move on.  You have a lot of books on your TBR list anyway.  I have to mention a one-star review I received because of how much the reader hated my antagonist. I just wanted to respond – THAT’S THE POINT . Another reviewer gave me a low rating because the rape scene just wasn’t hard core enough. Wow, just wow, people. To each their own. It took a minute, but I didn’t respond. I moved on.
  6. Give the reader of the review something on which to reference.  Is this book like any you’ve ever read?  Which one?  Does this character remind you of someone?  Who?  If you want the reader to really connect with your reviews, give them something to connect with.
  7. If you are book blogger – get visual! Including the book cover goes without saying. But I love bloggers who take it one step further and include relevant pictures or even action emotions. Make the review fun! It should be as entertaining as the book was.

So there you have it. Bloggers, authors, and reviewers – what do you think? Have anything to add?

From the Mouths of Bloggers

The best way to introduce my series is through the words of book review bloggers!  Because each reader interprets a story differently, I conveyed the story using bits and pieces of reviews by readers themselves.  See the Akasha Series introduction on Ritesh’s blog.

And if you haven’t read my post and voted for your elemental power of choice yet, now is the time!  Read this article and comment!

So…that’s all I really have to say.  Since I feel like this blog post is too short, and because I just figured out how to embed YouTube videos, and because I can’t stop thinking about the Hunger Games – I leave you with the awesome movie trailer. Can’t wait ’till March 23rd!!!