Jan 27 2017

Goals and Book Reviews and Bingo #NewToMe2017 #FlightsOfFantasy #DiversityBingo2017

goals image

My 2017 goal of contributing more to the #atozchallenge is going to be met, as I’ve just been promoted. Keep watch on the A to Z blog next week!
I haven’t made any real progress on my resolution this month. My focus has been on reading 10 books and getting ready for April.


  • Publish two decent-selling book series (speculative fiction)
  • Survive at least another 38 years
  • There’s also the Bucket List.

2017 Resolution:

  • This year I resolve to finish at least one of my big writing projects.

2017 Goals:


2017 Reading challenges
GenreSF120 #NewToMe2017 image #FlightsOfFantasy image debut author reading challenge 2017 image

2017 Reading Challenge

J. has
read 0 books toward
their goal of
50 books.

Goals for January:

  • Leave a comment on 30 blogs
  • Read and review 3 books
  • Interview 2 more Debut Authors
  • Edit and schedule 10 April posts
  • Have a good Valentine’s Day
  • Reading during the #BecauseDragonsRAT February 20- 26th

#becausedragonsRAT : A dragon-themed readathon for fantasy books

Review of Goals for January:

  • Leave a comment on 50 blogsMischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Read and review 4 books Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Interview 2 more Debut Authors Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Edit 5 future postsMischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Rock #BoutOfBooks 18Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal

For those who recall my previous Twitter goals, I’ve hit another milestone:

@JLenniDorner has 7000 Twitter followers as of January 2017


@JLenniDorner is the Interviewer for the Operation Awesome blog Debut Author Spotlight on Wednesdays Would you please take a moment to share the debut author image? It would mean a great deal not only to me, but to any debut author who is interviewed as a result. Thanks so much!

Have goals? Need encouragement? This blog hop is for you!

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4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
Last Minute Customers by Jessica E. Subject @jsubject
#NewToMe2017 – I have not read books by this author before.

A quick and easy erotic read that explores the possibility of a dream-come-true for the main character.

4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
Do You Want To Play With My Balls? by Cifaldi Brothers @cifaldibrothers
#NewToMe2017 – I have not read books by this author before.

It’s so wrong… and yet…
There’s innuendo in every sentence. It never directly says anything that isn’t appropriate for children. However, the book is for adults with dirty minds. You know who you are.

5 five star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
Moonless (Maiden of Time Book 1)by Crystal Collier @crystalcollier1
#NewToMe2017 – I have not read books by this author before.
#FlightsOfFantasy #SpecFic

OMG! I have a new favorite book in my top 10!
Like every other book that I end up loving the most, I wasn’t instantly hooked. (Confession: I don’t care for Chapter 1 of Harry Potter, or the opening of Divergent, and I can go on and on with this list.) But then something happened in the book when the MC went to a certain place she wasn’t supposed to go and OH.MY.GLORIFICATION. That’s it. I was owned. And then I started to notice something about the Passionate… they remind me of some of my characters. As if Crystal and I maybe heard the same stories growing up or something. I don’t know, but where “a Titan against the dainty parlor” is mentioned, it feels uncanny. This made me love the story all the more.

There is a Pride and Prejudice similarity in the scene where a friend asks another friend to marry him, and soon after someone else says, “Why can you not take up a decent prospect like any normal girl?” It’s an amusing scene.

My heart… all the feels in this scene: “Alexia realized, self-consciously, her mistake. They belonged to the adult world now. They couldn’t interact as freely as they once had.” That got me. Reading it again here, I’m still feeling it.

Here’s my very favorite quote from the book: “That is what I like about you. You have never cared what others think. It is all about what matters to you.” Powerful line!

I’m torn between reading this one again and moving on to the next in the series. I want to do both at the same time! Ha ha. But seriously, this book is fantastic.

3 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
Word Magic for Writers by Cindy Rogers
#NewToMe2017 – I have not read books by this author before.

There is quite a bit of information in this book which I have previously used and been called out by editors for daring to put in a manuscript. On the other hand, this book defines what those methods and such are in a well-done way. Proceed with caution if you are above an eighth grade writing competency level.

Antimetabole, repetition of identical words, is often a frowned upon practice. Antiphrasis is used in every mob-fiction story I’ve ever encountered, as they all have a character named “Tiny” who… isn’t. Chapter 11’s ideas about writing colors, however, is useful and interesting. (Wine red and glittering gold instead of just red and gold.) (*If you want to read some great eye description, see ^ Moonless ^ ) The vivid verbs topic interests me, but the book made it dependent upon sports reporting, and was less helpful than I desired. However, a GREAT tip in the book: “The peppering of to be verbs, and of helping verbs such as do, have, can, may, might, must, ought, could, should, would deadens a paragraph or a scene faster than hail on a tin roof deadens the senses. Action verbs activate a scene every time.” And there’s a good review of show-don’t-tell. There’s a mention of embedding the setting into the action. This hits on a few of the points from my book.

I liked the mention of zeugma. (Though I’ve been advised against using them.) “She must be between engagements at present.” (Engagements meaning an agreement to marry AND plans to attend something.) It’s a fun z word that isn’t used often. #AtoZchallenge inspiration!

The section on titles and using key words is spot on. Then there’s a tip which is contradictory to several other writing how-to reference guides: “Chapter endings cannot all end with a dangler or a lure into the next chapter.

For information and education theory, this is a 5-star book. It would be great for young writers or those interested in learning about the craft. For adult writing in the world of submitting to agents and publishers, it’s a 3-star book.

5 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth @VeronicaRoth
#DiversityBingo2017 – MC with chronic pain, displace MC, MC of color in SFF
#FlightsOfFantasy #SpecFic
Speculative Fiction Diagram
What we have here is the ultimate example of Speculative Fiction. There’s plenty of fantasy, of that which feels imagined, and there’s science with spaceships and floating vehicles, and there’s even some horror with all the killing that goes on in this book. Plus, there’s mention of the history of that galaxy, which has multiple interpretations, some of which just feed perfectly into fantasy. As I said, this is Speculative Fiction, this is the gold standard for encompassing the entire genre.

There’s also a grab bag of diversity (though it is set in another galaxy, so take that as you will). There are two main characters, one with “brown skin” (Cyra). Cyra’s chapters are written in first-person, but the chapters belonging to Akos are written in third-person limited. It sounds jarring, but it isn’t. The book is gripping and wonderful. When does the next one come out? The ending has me needing the next book.

Some of my favorite parts:

“The pain I chose, instead of the pain that had chosen me.” This is a line that anyone suffering from chronic pain will appreciate.

The book just came out January 17, 2017, but it feels very current and politically relevant (in the USA, in my opinion).

“Ridiculous, really, but sometimes people just believed what they were told. It was easier to survive that way.
There’s a part (page 196 Hardcover in chapter 16) where the news is not accurately translated, but rather presented with a biased or downright untrue point of view that the leaders dictate. A world of such control that not even the established newscast can be trusted because that’s the only way to keep those in poverty compliant.
“…I had never starved anyone or kept them from adequate medical care…”
“…you are Thuvhesit. You are one of my people, not theirs.” It’s important to remember that a leader must feel this way. A leader must care for and about EVERY person they are meant to lead. No one group or individual can be more important than another. All ages, races, religions, genders, sexual preferences, beliefs, backgrounds, creeds, and ancestral lines must be treated equally by a leader, who must respect, appreciate, and fight for ALL of those, as the leader is a representative for ALL OF THOSE. (Sometimes a leader forgets this and mistakes his/her role for only helping people of his/her own age, race, gender, and sexual preference who happen to associate with the most popular religion of the area and the favored beliefs of that faith. That is NEVER okay for a leader to do, ever, because it leads to oppression, which is the death of culture and the beginning of a decline of education.)


My Bookish Bingo Winter Card so far:

winter book bingo

Win 55 Paperback #Books and a #Starbucks Gift Basket in this BOOKS & #COFFEE #Giveaway! PaperBacksAndCoffee
Click to Enter

*NOT sponsored or brought to you by J Lenni Dorner

Try the grammarly extension in your browser. Improve your writing!

Did you vote on what book I should read during #BecauseDragonsRAT?
How are your resolutions coming?
Do you like the end of chapters in books to drive you to the next or to just wrap-up what you’ve read?
Have you ever been burdened with cruel or unjust impositions or restraints because you were born “different” or because of who your ancestors were?


Skip to comment form

    • Brittney on January 27, 2017 at 5:06 PM

    That’s one thing that I should add to my goals for this year; I need to join new blog hops. I know it helps with meeting other bloggers/networking. Congrats on accomplishing your A to Z challenge by contributing more. 🙂

    Btw, I’m Brittney from http://morilii.blogspot.com/ and I’m a new co-host for this bloghop with Misha! I look forward to reading your future updates!
    Find on Twitter:

    1. During the A to Z Challenge is when I find the most interesting hops to later join.

  1. Yay – you got there with your Twitter followers goal 😀
    You have a busy schedule there, but don’t forget about your ‘big writing project’. I’m going to nag you if you don’t make time for that… best wishes for February.
    Ruth Livingstone has this post to share January 2017 – writing updateMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

    1. Yes, I must make priorities come first.

  2. Wow, I decided to cut back, but it looks like you’ve decided to go full force! Congrats on your accomplishments, and here’s to a great 2017!
    Find on Twitter:

    1. Yes. I’m crazy like that.

    • Misha on January 30, 2017 at 12:18 AM

    Good going!

    I’m trying to get myself into regular office hours again, because I almost gave myself a mini-burn out two weeks ago due to a sudden workload increase.

    When it comes to chapters, I’m okay with both, as long as a cliffhanger chapter ending isn’t followed by a cop-out opening.
    Misha has this post to share Update Day: January is OverMy Profile
    Find on Twitter:

    1. True, true. I’ve read a book that chapter endings all made putting a bookmark in IMPOSSIBLE. I loved it. Maybe I’ve fallen out of one too many trees. Ha ha.

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