Voice of War – Zack Argyle

This year, the Book Bloggers’ Novel of the Year Award (BBNYA) is celebrating the 65 books that made it into Round Two with a mini spotlight blitz tour for each title. BBNYA is a yearly competition where book bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors, ending with 10 finalists and one overall winner.

If you want some more information about BBNYA, check out the BBNYA Website or take a peek over on Twitter. BBNYA is brought to you in association with the @Foliosociety (if you love beautiful books, you NEED to check out their website!) and the book blogger support group @The_WriteReads.

Author Bio

Zack Argyle lives just outside of Seattle, WA, USA, with his wife and two children. He has a degree in Electrical Engineering and works full-time as a software engineer. He is the winner of the Indies Today Best Fantasy Award, and a finalist in Mark Lawrence’s Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off.

A Game of Wings and Marks – Rebecca Crunden

This year, the Book Bloggers’ Novel of the Year Award (BBNYA) is celebrating the 65 books that made it into Round Two with a mini spotlight blitz tour for each title. BBNYA is a yearly competition where book bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors, ending with 10 finalists and one overall winner.

If you want some more information about BBNYA, check out the BBNYA Website or take a peek over on Twitter. BBNYA is brought to you in association with the @Foliosociety (if you love beautiful books, you NEED to check out their website!) and the book blogger support group @The_WriteReads.

The Lore of Prometheus – Graham Austin-King

This book contains:

  • PTSD from serving in Afghanistan
  • descriptions of the destruction of war, including injury to women and children
  • experimentation on humans
  • torture of humans

The book is broken up into three parts of which the first and last parts are from John’s point of view, with sporadic inclusions of Mackenzie’s point of view. The middle part however is from Mackenzie’s point of view with some sporadic inclusions of John’s point of view.

John has previously served in the UK army in Afghanistan and as a result has severe PTSD. It’s something that’s ruined his life, ended his relationship and as a result driven him back there.

Mackenzie, however, is an Australian nurse volunteering in Afghanistan when she’s kidnapped by her driver on the way home from work.

The general gist of this story is an Afghan warlord is kidnapping people who have magical powers with the intent of learning how to wield them himself. Anything more than that would kinda ruin it for you! And it’s too good to ruin!

I absolutely loved this story and I’m so glad it won the Book Bloggers Novel of the Year Award 2020!

Given most of the other books that made it to the finals we aimed at a younger audience and/or were of a lighter theme, I wasn’t sure how this darker story would hold up. I loved the mix of emotional development, different points of view, psychological changes, an amazing villain and the determination and fortitude of John and Mackenzie.

Every time I thought I’d hit the limit of Graham’s mastery, I discovered I was wrong!

Who would have thought such a mix of fantasy, technology and a Middle Eastern war could result in such genius?!

Author Bio

Graham Austin-King was born in the south of England and weaned on broken swords and half-forgotten spells.

A shortage of these forced him to consume fantasy novels at an ever-increasing rate, turning computers and tabletop gaming between meals.

He experimented with writing at the beginning of an education that meandered through journalism, international relations, and law. To this day he is committed to never allowing those first efforts to reach public eyes.

After spending a decade in Canada learning what ‘cold’ really means, and being horrified by poutine, he settled once again in the UK with a seemingly endless horde of children.

To date he is the author of five novels, drawing on a foundation of literary influences ranging from David Eddings to Clive Barker.

Book Bloggers Novel of the Year Award (BBNYA)

I received this book to read and review as part of the BBNYA 2020 competition. All opinions expressed are my own. This tour has been organised by The Write Reads tours team.

BBNYA is a yearly competition where book bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors.  If you are an author and wish to learn more about the 2021 BBNYA competition, you can visit the official website or our Twitter account. If you would like to sign-up and enter your book, you can find the BBNYA 2021 AUTHOR SIGN UP FORM HERE. Please make sure to carefully read our terms and conditions before entering.

If you are a book blogger or reviewer, you can apply to be part of BBNYA 2021 by filling out this form (also remember to read the terms and conditions before signing up)! 

BBNYA is brought to you in association with the Folio Society (If you love beautiful books you NEED to check out their website!) And the book blogger support group TheWriteReads.

Stay Mad, Sweetheart – Heleen Kist

This book contains:

  • suicide
  • bullying and harassment (both online and in real life),
  • revenge.

Throughout the book we follow Laura, Suki and Claire as they deal with the aftermath of Emily’s suicide. Emily is Laura’s best friend and she worked with Claire. Her suicide affected each of them deeply and we see that play out in their actions throughout the book.

Laura is a socially awkward computer programmer. She’s already managing Emily’s social media use to make sure her mental health stays as strong as possible when the story begins. Since before the book begins, her male business partner has been managing the sale of their business so she can focus on the code and out of the politics of selling a business.

Claire is given Emily’s event planning portfolio after her suicide, and now has to work with Laura who she briefly spoke to just before Emily’s body was discovered. It’s a portfolio she doesn’t want, while her boss has given the one she wanted to a male colleague with less experience, and one he knew she wanted.

Suki isn’t introduced to us until after Emily’s death, yet she’s also been impacted by a male-controlled field. Her job is to understand Laura’s work to ensure the value is appropriately evaluated for the sale of the business.

All three women are impacted by Emily’s suicide in different ways. Laura is emotionally distraught; Emily is overworked and underappreciated while Suki is left trying to get Laura to focus. During this process they realise they have a common ground of wanting justice for wrongs that men have enforced on them.

Over the course of the book, they work together to process their grief and move forwards professionally, regardless of what barriers the men in their industries have put in their way. The challenges they go through to achieve this is something they do together, as a new friendship group bonded out of their shared experiences.

Overall, I didn’t like this book. The writing was great. The engagement was great. It was captivating. All the key areas you score a book in, it did really well.

It was those intangible things like the message it sends that really got to me. It sent the message that just because men have rigged the workplace system so much, it’s ok for women to commit crimes and ruin their lives to get ahead.

Up until the revenge plan was hatched, I was loving the book AND its message. Once that plan was hatched?

I literally only finished it because it was a BBNYA book, not because I was enjoying where it was going.

As a woman who looks younger than her years, is more mature than my years and is often in a position where I’m telling men twice my age how things should be done. I understand where they’re coming from. And I don’t agree with their decisions. I don’t believe that’s the best way to handle those issues and I wish Heleen had taken a better route than this.

Revenge really wasn’t necessary.

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