Summer Roundup

Roundup (noun) – 5. a summary, brief listing, or résumé of related facts, figures, or information –

Well, it’s September 20th today. My calendar tells me that Autumn doesn’t officially start until the 22nd, but we’ve been feeling the chill in the air for a little while here, so it seems like a pretty good time to do my summer roundup.

I had a great time this year. I got some writing done, Dead Water was released on August 8th, I’ve finished the draft of Doomed Seas, which will be my first release of the fall, and I’ve begun my 365K words in a year challenge. I got some reading done, with reviews of Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini TaylorThe Shadow Hour by Melissa GreyMechanica by Betsy CornwellHarry Potter and the Cursed ChildWith Malice by Eileen CookSnow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch posted for your perusal. I got a new Kobo Aura One, which I’ve loaded up with books for the upcoming fall season, and I’m going to be posting about my most anticipated Young-Adult Fall 2016 releases tomorrow.

My favourite part of summer is just being able to sit outside, especially if the bugs are mild. It’s tradition for me to go on a trip to the Rocky Mountains, and we did that in August and got some gorgeous photos. Coupled to the mountain trip this year was attending the When Words Collide writing conference in Calgary, which is always an amazingly fun time. I learn a lot, meet knew friends, and always head home with new ideas.

I also love the summer flowers, and as fall approaches and the flowers begin to die off, I find myself missing their bright and surprising beauty. But the beauty of the changing leaves quickly fills in many of the colour gaps, until the brown of the pre-snow takes over, and then I look forward to the crisp white of the first snowfall. But first, here’s a look at my favourite blooms of the year.

What will you miss most about summer?

What I’m Reading: Mechanica by Betsy Cornwell

YA Book Review: Mechanica by Betsy Cornwell

Mechanica (associate link) by Betsy Cornwell, is a Cinderella Story. Now, Cinderella is probably my second favorite fairy tale (after the Twelve Dancing Princesses), so I thought I would like this book. And I did like Mechanica, but I didn’t love it. But I did love the cover, which is why I picked up the book.

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The first bit that slowed me down was the beginning. Right at the start the author gives us a couple of chapters of backstory about the main character Nicolette. Okay, this is a Cinderella story, I don’t need background, I already know how the main character (who is later called Mechanica), got to be in her present situation

And because of all the background, the pace felt really slow.

But there were some things I really did like about the book. I liked the steampunk element, and I loved the description. My favorite was the Night Market, and if you’ve read the book you’ll know why. I could have stayed at the Night Market forever. But while there was a fair bit of tension, there just was not enough action, and there really could have been.

It appears that this book is the first in a series, with the second book due out next year. I’ll be honest. I’m not likely to read book 2, as there are many other series I’ve enjoyed more. However, I still found the book pleasing to read, if not exciting.

3/5 Stars.


J. E. Hunter is the author of the Black Depths Series. Tales of a Redheaded Sea-Witch, and Broken Tide, the first two books of the series can be found on  Amazon,  Kobo,  iBooks,  Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords. The third book, Dark Shores, was released April 1, 2016. The fourth and last book of the Black Depths series, Twisted Currents, will be released in the fall of 2016, after Dead Water and Doomed Seas, two Novellas featuring Caesar.