Along with book covers, I’ll be giving short voice reviews for books of authors of SFR, Science Fiction Romance.

Since most stories I write are SFR and it’s a growing genre, I want to develop a site where new authors are highlighted.

I’ll be posting reviews of authors on my FB writers groups, and any authors who request my short critique of their voices (including the author’s site and buy page).

What am I getting out of this?

With all my time writing, and mostly editing my own work, as yet I’m not sure who my small audience would be for my own brand of SFR (sorry, folks, if I put too much of my geeky science into my work). So, by sampling what’s out there, specifically encouraging the reading of accessible speculative voices, I hope to increase an audience for SFR and my brand of SFR.  [And this does not mean the work has to be exactly scientifically accurate: If someone walks off a cliff and doesn’t fall, then there needs to be a hard, creative, sci-fi explanation of how that’s possible).

I will NOT post negative reviews. Mine are meant to encourage an audience that enjoys SFR. So, if you’ve got plenty of original attitude in your work (especially, your first hook and/or first page) that’s meant to engage your reader, please send them my way via email in the text of the email.


Gertrude Friedberg, The Revolving Boy [A,YA]

The hook:

The first time Mrs. Nagy ever noticed anything was at the beach when Derv was three. Had she known what to look for, she might have seen that he was that way from the start. But what mother ever measured an infant’s random moves and reverses around a crib or even a playpen?

Links to Gertrude Friedberg and her book:





Jackie Barbosa, Can’t Take The Heat [A]

Delaney looked at Wes, the expression on her face unfamiliar, but instantly recognizable.


That look shredded his heart, because if there was one thing Delaney Monroe had never been, it was helpless. He’d never known anyone more capable of taking care of herself. Being strapped to all these machines, unsure of how she’d come to be here or what was happening, had to be the worst kind of hell imaginable for someone so determinedly self-sufficient.

What I like about this excerpt is the respect shown by the hero for the character of his heroine.

Memorial fund for Jackie’s sixteen year old son:  http://theseasonforromance.com/wordpress/2014/03/julian-fraire-memorial-fund-author-jackie-barbosas-son-2/

Jackie Barbosa’s Website: http://www.jackiebarbosa.com/

Lisa Kessler, Hunter’s Moon [A]

Pain burst through my gut, setting my entire side on fire. Dammit! The slimy little bastard had stabbed me.

I pressed him against the wall, forcing myself not to loosen my grip. Fear crept back into his eyes when I didn’t let him go. I held him up with one arm and pulled his knife out of my side with the other.

His eyes opened wide. “What the hell are you?”

Using both hands I threw him across the alley, his skull crunching against the bricks. He hit the ground like a rag doll while I clutched the new hole in my side.

“I’m a wolf, asshole.”

What I love. A character with attitude.

Using first person, Kessler gets us deep into her nasty Werewolf character. We may not like this hero, at first, but we can’t look away. Such are train-wreck events. Like Jamie Dornan (the new Christian Grey) in The Fall. He’s mucho creepy but we can’t get enough of him.

Lisa Kessler’s websitehttp://www.authorlisakessler.com/

Cassie Mae, How To Date A Nerd [YA]

Rules of keeping your popular rep:

. . . And number five, never ever reveal you collect Star Wars memorabilia, you know every line to Lord of the Rings, and you actually know the birthdates of all the Harry Potter cast members.

Yeah. I’m a total closeted nerd.

I’m not cool with pity glares in the hallways, painful jabs, and social scars. No thanks. It’s much easier to keep my true nature hidden beneath layers of eyeliner, skimpy outfits, and even I must admit to myself, a rockin’ body.

Pretty obvious, the voice of our character. The nerdish long sentences punctuated with short phrases, as if she’s speaking right to the reader. Clusters of hurtful reasoning—the logic behind her angst at not fitting in as herself.

Cassie Mae’s Website: http://readingwritingandlovinit.blogspot.com/

John Brunner, Stand On Zanzibar [A]

Both his hands lay on the edge of the desk before him, as lax as vegetables. The left one showed its pinkish palm to the ceiling, with the creased lines that once, when he was a very small boy, had led a woman of half-French and half-Shango breeding to predict he would be a great hero. The other was turned to show its mahogany back, its tree-knot knuckles, as though poised to rap out a nervous fingertip rhythm.

It did not stir.

And so forms the description of a man, the president of a small and poor country in the midst of a futuristic and commercialized wealthy Earth. His back story of a war injury to the left side of his brain introduced by the fact that he could not move his right hand .

John Brunner, Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Brunner_(novelist)