Self-Pubs (Current and Ex)

It’s no secret that I really like how e-publishing has given so many more authors the ability to put their stories out in the world without having to go down the traditional publishing route.  I don’t deny that there are quality issues out there (it’s “buyer beware” and I’ve definitely been bitten a couple of times), but on the other hand, I’ve read (and loved) stories that I may never have encountered had they been written ten years ago because agents and/or editors didn’t think there was a market for them.

Here are a couple of self-pubbed books that fall into that category (though one is no longer a self-pub!).

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17619479I was in the mood for military SF, and Marko Kloos‘s TERMS OF ENLISTMENT was mentioned in a self-pubbed recs post on Sherwood Smith’s blog – I picked it up and ending up really liking it.

My three-sentence review on Goodreads:

Picked this up following a rec from Sherwood Smith’s LJ and have no regrets. Fast-paced read, compelling story-telling, and certainly came across as authentic MilSF. The relationship strand struck me as a bit weak, but that aside, I’m hoping we get a next book to find out what happens next.

If you want a proper review, Jan posted her review of TERMS OF ENLISTMENT @ Notes from a Readerholic (yes – I did the pushing).  The author was planning on releasing its sequel LINES OF DEPARTURE this month (although TERMS works as a standalone), and I was looking forward to it. 

But – Mr Kloos has just announced a book deal with Amazon’s 47North imprint, which is fantastic news.  I thought the book was great, and this means it’ll be available to a much larger audience (and the 47North version is now available on Amazon).  The not-so-good news for readers like me is that the sequel has been pushed back to early 2014.

I’m thrilled for the author, but it’s going to be a loooong wait.

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If you follow me on Goodreads, you’ll see that I finally got around to reading SU Pacat‘s CAPTIVE PRINCE Volumes 1 and 2 (kind of hard to categorise, but I’ll go for m/m fantasy romance).  These books caused a bit of a buzz around the internets (or at least on the blogs I frequent) a month or so ago now – as is the norm, the hype convinced me to buy the first book, but put me off actually reading them until now.

Unfortunately, now that I’ve picked them up, all I can do is add to the hype and say I loved them.  I will say they’re not for everyone (I’m not joking about my trigger warnings mention below), but it’s the sort of story that lingered in my mind for days after I finished the books.  The story’s available as a free read on the author’s LJ, so you can give her writing a whirl before committing.

Here’s what I posted on Goodreads about them:

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Captive Prince: Volume One (Captive Prince, #1)Captive Prince: Volume One by S.U. Pacat

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

If I listed trigger warnings, I dread to think what the list would be like for the first half of this book… so take that as fair warning.

However, I ended up really falling for this story – it starts off a bit uneven (and there are definitely some problematic bits), but once I got into it, I couldn’t put the book down. Layers and layers of intrigue and politics, plus a very complicated (and compelling) relationship – I dived into the next book immediately after finishing this.

*

Captive Prince: Volume Two (Captive Prince, #2)Captive Prince: Volume Two by S.U. Pacat

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A supremely satisfying story – we move out of the Veretian court to their borders, but while the political intrigue and treachery remain as present as ever amidst the preparation for war, the story is really about Damen/Laurent’s relationship. Talk about unresolved sexual tension – this probably sets the benchmark for best use of UST ever.

The ending was of the good cliffhanger kind – I’m very impatiently waiting for the third and final volume.

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Have you come across any self-pubbed gems* recently?  Tell me!

* You all know my Andrea K Höst weakness, so really, read that as any other self-pubbed authors apart from Ms Höst.

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9 thoughts on “Self-Pubs (Current and Ex)

  1. Hmm, try Lindsay Buroker (on Smashwords or Amazon or Kobo) – she has quite a few books free and I can recommend The Emperor’s Edge – though to my mind she isn’t as polished as AKH, true, which is why I have downloaded or bought other books but haven’t read them yet…

  2. I’m so glad you suggested Marko Kloos to me. I don’t want to have to wait so long for the next book, but I am happy for him and look forward to reading many more of his books.

    • TERMS OF ENLISTMENT was a good read, wasn’t it? I tend to associate Baen with MilSF, so was wondering if he’d be a good fit for their readers. I don’t *think* I’ve read anything published by 47North yet so no idea what their range is like.

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