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A shipwreck. A lost treasure.

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Drachen (A Matthys Rossouw Pursuit Book 1)

By John Reese, Aug 28 2018 06:44AM



We all have the capacity to kill a relationship and whether intentionally or unintentionally there are few of us who haven’t done so at some time in our lives. Romance novels in their various forms explore the ups and downs of relationships but the quickest way to kill any relationship with a lover is through the infliction of abuse and the emotional damage it causes. When we talk about abuse in a relationship the mind invariably leans towards physical abuse but there are behaviours that we could exhibit which may not be connected with abusive behaviour, but come very close. What are these things that could see the demise of a previously loving relationship?


Disrespect.

We may not think we would fall into this trap, but it could be more difficult to maintain respect between lovers than you think. The closer we become in a relationship, the more familiarity there is- which is good because closeness is a great foundation. However, we could easily slide into a habit of disrespecting the other person. How so? Merely the way we talk to our partner, and the way we perceive them. A positive mental image of our partner is a good basis from which to enter into any communication. Otherwise, irritations and our own negative moods can creep into our language. This undermines confidence and can convince our lover that our love for them is waning.


Silent Treatment

We are not talking about space here. Everyone needs space, and each partner should allow the other this if needed. However, silent treatment chokes the breath out of a relationship. When we communicate, we do not have to second guess how our partner is feeling. If we are silent we leave our partner emotionally at sea, and their perception of how we are thinking and feeling about them is likely worse than reality. Without communication, the relationship stagnates, goes bad and dies. Worse still, silent treatment can be used as an implement of control or even punishment. Our partner is cowed by not knowing what is going on in the relationship, and the lack of verbal affection is a sure shortcut to its demise...


Blame

Let's face it, none of us is perfect! We aren't, and our partner isn't. Sometimes the fault lies with us, sometimes with our lover. But blaming and shaming signifies contempt, and communicates that we view our lover as beneath us. This scornful behaviour is toxic to both parties and undermines not only personal confidence, but confidence in the relationship.


Comparisons

No-one likes to be compared negatively to another. But when it is your lover making the comparisons it cuts even deeper. Negative comparison to a parent, for instance, tells our partner that they are not good enough, that they don't come up to expectations, and that others can please you more than they can. Comparisons to an ex can be even more damaging. After all that relationship failed-obviously for a reason. Are our similar traits going to kill this one too? These are the thoughts that may germinate in our lovers head. They begin to perceive themselves as a failure in our eyes, which may, in turn, lead to the failure of our relationship.


Breakup Threats

This is self-explanatory. It communicates that we hold our relationship as of little value, that we would walk out on it for petty reasons, and that we don't love our partner enough to show loyalty. Respect, care and communication are instead the ways to keep our relationship alive.


As a species we are hard-wired to seek out relationships. Sometimes we get them right, sometimes we get them wrong and it’s the often rocky road we travel in search of love that ensures the enduring popularity of the romance novel. From literary fiction to romantic comedy the choice is huge and choosing the right novel is invariably hit and miss but one romantic fiction author you should be reading is Michelle L E Price. Her new romantic comedy Hidden In The Writers Room certainly makes the grade and an in-depth review can be found HERE





By John Reese, Jul 16 2018 06:43AM

The religious book market continues to see year on year growth, which certainly indicates a surge of public interest in what has historically been a minority genre and with congregations around the world increasingly engaging in communal discernment it’s a trend that seems set to continue.


With Christian authors, there is a distinct and unique difference in the message and values they share through their written work. and for many, there is either a special reason to write or a significant life influence that guides their hand whilst those who read religious, spiritual or inspirational books want reads that provide them with genuine insight. How to meet the challenges they might find themselves facing or how to further embrace their beliefs and as authors, Christians bring a unique perspective to the written word because of what and who they believe in.


However, as with all genres that enjoy a surge in popularity it’s often hard to single out the dross and charlatans from the genuine gems. Attractive covers and polished marketing copy doesn’t cut it when there is little of substance to be found inside. Religious readers are looking for authentic authors who are willing to share what they have learned from their mistakes and experiences, how they arrived at their choices, and how they have grown and were transformed by their beliefs and devotion to God. On many levels, the accounts and stories are universal reflections on such things as rites of passage or dealing with pivotal events but invariably readers are looking for what made it possible for the author to grow, change and become a stronger and better person.


Unfortunately, in western commentary religion is often overcomplicated and this is something authors writing in the religious genre should remain cognizant of. Their words must first and foremost be accessible and one author who is doing this is Horace Williams Jr. with his debut release Unleash the Power of Prayer in your Life. Recounting his story from a stroke survivor to an Award-winning author you can find our review HERE.




By John Reese, Jul 10 2018 01:19AM

Whilst the evolution of self-publishing has proved a genuine boon for readers the bar for publishing has been notably lowered and in no genre more obviously than Literary Fiction. Yes there are a lot of great covers out there and carefully penned book blurbs hailing the masterful use of language and thought-provoking explorations about the human condition but there are far too many Literary Fiction novels failing to meet expectations.


Fans of literary fiction tend to lean away from fast-paced or tightly plotted novels with a preference for good prose, complex characterisation and challenging themes but whilst literary and commercial fiction have their own distinct conventions readers are still often confused about what the terms mean. Perhaps it is irrelevant and the only worthwhile distinction between books is whether they are good or bad. After all, arguing the merits of one genre over the other is fraught with contention but one thing is for sure and that is historically literary fiction has embraced a greater level of intellectual and psychological sophistication whilst rejecting formulaic tropes and cliché.


On this level, literary fiction embraces novels which tend towards the formally innovative and are preoccupied with a deeper understanding of the human condition as opposed to serving up an instantly gratifying story. Of course, there are other genre reads with literary merit too but perhaps we have veered too far from our original question.


We asked what the difference between Good & Bad Literary Fiction is and when it comes down to it the answer is extremely simple. It doesn’t matter what genre a reader leans towards a good novel should always engross and captivate a reader's thoughts because in the final analysis beautiful writing is no substitute for a compelling story.


One author who embraces the Literary Fiction genre is Jamie Zerndt who we recently had the pleasure of reviewing You can read our review HERE and also see how Jamie is using his rather distinctive narrative voice to attract an enthusiastic following.



By John Reese, Jul 1 2018 10:21AM


The popularity of Crime Fiction might wax and wane but at the end of the day, it still remains one of the most popular genres. Of course one might argue the popularity of a genre based on revenue or the number of books published but when it comes down to good old fashion sentiment Crime Fiction and particularly Thrillers takes some beating.

By John Reese, Jun 24 2018 04:34PM

We said it so often it seems like we are on continuous replay but we make no apology for saying it again. The days when an author could simply write for a living are over. Whether you write best-selling illustrated children’s books or something less magical authors are increasingly becoming publishing entrepreneurs and that means navigating the myriad of social platforms and knowing how to best maximise your valuable investment of time and increasingly money.

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