Why these reviews?

I’m aware that the books I review on this blog are a pretty weird bunch. I don’t know if any of you read all of them, or if you simply use the ones that are in your wheelhouse. But if you’ve ever wondered why I review what I do, this is why.

I’m an indie writer. Four or five years ago I started reviewing indie fiction for Big Al and Pals, the premier review site for indie work. Suddenly a lot of indie books from all sorts of genres from SF through (a lot of) fantasy to YA and literary fiction started coming to my notice, not just from Big Al. Because I write books that hover at the fringes I am interested in seeing what other hoverers are writing. And I have a mind that flits and sips like a butterfly. Boredom is my enemy.

I don’t do horror, I don’t do soppy kissing, and I’m usually bored by police procedurals. I enjoy genre mash-ups, as a rule. And I will read anything else, if it is well-written. I check that with a Kindle sample before I start. If I become too disappointed as the book unfolds I stop reading. Simples.

If the book merits a 3* review or better I will review it. I don’t give shitty reviews, but I do speak as I find. So if (for example) your punctuation is a mess, or you have a massive plothole, I will say so.  Because you can fix those problems, right? And you should. Your reader deserves the best you can do.

I know Indies often can’t afford an editor. And I have seen some ‘professionally edited’ work that made me weep for the poor sucker who had paid good money for bad service. So if we all help each other, we make better books. Which is better for everyone.

And what, you may ask, makes me such a know-it-all when it comes to reviewing books? I taught creative writing at university level for eight years. Doing that, I learned a lot about my own writing and writing in general – what makes stories flow, what gives them pace; what makes stories flabby or hard to follow; what punctuation is helpful to sense and what gets in the way.  And, of course, I had to find a way to express that – tactfully and helpfully – to students. Circumstances insisted that I stop teaching. But this is what I bring to reviewing.







Published by Judi Moore

Hi there, I hope you find something to interest you here. In December 2017 I published my fourth book – ‘Wonders will never cease’. It’s a satirical campus novel set in the fictional Ariel University in 1985. If you enjoyed Tom Sharpe’s Porterhouse novels, Willy Russell’s ‘Educating Rita’, David Lodge’s campus novels or Malcolm Bradbury’s ‘The History Man’ back in the day, you may enjoy revisiting the ivory towers of 1980s’ academe thirty years on. See what you think. “It is December, 1985. The year is winding gently towards its close until Fergus Girvan, a Classicist at Ariel University, finds his research has been stolen by the man who is also seeking to steal his daughter. But which man is, actually, the more unscrupulous of the two? And is there hope for either of them?” In the autumn of 2015 I published a volume of short fiction: 'Ice Cold Passion and other stories'. I am also the author of novella 'Little Mouse', a shortish piece of historical fiction which I published in 2014 and, a sequel to it, 'Is death really necessary?', my eco thriller set in the near future and which, confusingly, I published in 2009. All the books are available from all good online bookshops and FeedARead on paper, and as e-books on Kindle. On a semi-regular basis, and about a month after the event, I post here reviews which I do for Big Al & Pals, the premier reviewer of indie books, based in the States. My interests tend to thrillers, SF, magic realism and other quirky stuff. On this blog are also posted the reviews I did for Leighton Buzzard Music Club over some five years up to the end of 2015. LBMC present annual seasons of eight monthly chamber music concerts at the Library Theatre in Leighton Buzzard, Bucks. They select young musicians just beginning to make their name - and the concerts are usually magnificent. I was very proud to be associated with them. I review other music, books, theatre and exhibitions which I've particularly enjoyed. BTW - it says the link to Facebook is broken. I dispute that. Click it and see, why not?

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