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    Kindle Deals: Black Earth books on sale

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    Reed Benson

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    Kindle Deals: Black Earth books on sale

    Post  Reed Benson on April 3rd 2018, 10:19 pm

    I don't know if this is temporary or permanent, but David N. Alderman's Black Earth books End of Innocence and The Broken Daisy are both on sale for $0.99 for Kindle at Amazon today.

    https://smile.amazon.com/David-N.-Alderman/e/B002MS8U8W/ref=dbs_t_r_fta_b002ms8u8w

    Amazon wrote:When the stars fall, few will stand…

    On the evening of his high school graduation, Nathan Pierce collapses on stage. Plagued with visions of an immortal girl intent on killing herself, he wonders if his mental instability is a consequence of the deadly car accident he was in days earlier.

    Heather Rhodes, wracked with guilt because of the fatal car wreck, begins to question her spiritual beliefs. With the death of a newborn weighing on her heart, Heather’s mind is ravaged by the memories of the wreck…and the supernatural gift she used to protect her and Nathan in the accident.

    Cynthia Ruin, aka The Pink Rabbit, decides that her high school graduation night should be used for partying, not attending a lame ceremony. At a nightclub in Scottsdale, she finds more than she bargained for when a seedy stranger from her past decides to exact his revenge on her for a prior rejection.

    All three individuals find themselves shaken from their everyday lives when the stars begin to fall and wreak havoc and destruction upon Earth. As panic sets in and chaos reigns across the globe, rumors spread that the falling stars may not be stars at all.
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    Rohelf

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    Re: Kindle Deals: Black Earth books on sale

    Post  Rohelf on April 15th 2018, 11:34 am

    I'm pretty sure the 99-cent deal on these books is only valid for the month of April.  Crossover Alliance has been promoting a different 99-cent book every month for a while now, and the Black Earth books are the current ones on offer.  So if these books appeal to you, get them before the month runs out.  If they don't, wait a few weeks and see what goes up on the sale block next.

    Have you already read the Black Earth books, Reed, or are you considering giving them a try?

    In either case, I did a review of the first volume, End of the Innocence, for the CGC channel a while ago.  It's long, but I try to keep it entertaining.  You can still watch it at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qhB45oJ3zdE

    If you just want the TL:DR version, I couldn't bring myself to recommend the first book.  I think Alderman is strong on action and description, but very weak when it comes to depicting realistic human speech and behavior, and that he really needs an editor on deck.  I did give the second book a chance because I had the opportunity to do so for free, but gave up on it about 2/3 of the way through, when it became clear that not only was Alderman not going to resolve or improve on any of my concerns about the first book, he was actually doubling down on some of my least favorite aspects.
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    Reed Benson

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    Re: Kindle Deals: Black Earth books on sale

    Post  Reed Benson on April 15th 2018, 8:09 pm

    Thanks for the info, Rohelf (or Kim?). I haven't actually read any of the Black Earth stuff aside from listening to an excerpt that was on the Untold Podcast. But I figured since I've been enjoying a lot of Crossover Alliance stories from the Untold Podcast and the CA anthologies, I might as well grab these two books while they're super cheap. If I like them I got a deal. If not, I'm not out much (it was gift card money anyway).

    I do get the feeling that I'll have similar opinions as you. Realistic speech and behavior is important to me in literature and my own writing. But I'm probably not going to actually read them for a little while. I've got a long queue of books ahead of them.
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    Rohelf

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    Re: Kindle Deals: Black Earth books on sale

    Post  Rohelf on April 17th 2018, 8:29 pm

    Either name works.  I picked my CGC forum handle long before I knew I would ever do anything on Youtube (mostly on my boyfriend's series POS TOS, but a bit on my own).

    The excerpt used for Black Earth on the Untold podcast was the prologue, right?  The bit about the immortal girl wishing she could die?  I agree, that was a strong excerpt, and an interesting character concept.  Unfortunately, I remember there being very little of her in the book.  (Just double-checked my old notes.  After the prologue, she appears in only three more chapters... out of fifty-two.)

    That's one of the other things I found frustrating about Black Earth; there are so many characters and plotlines that answers and resolutions take forever to come around.  It's similar in that aspect to the later books of A Song of Ice and Fire or the Wheel of Time, if you've read either of those series.  The author has so much going on that it's almost impossible to care about every plot, and you get annoyed when the ones you like get put on hold for the ones you don't.  Oh, you think Daenerys is cool?  You think her journey is interesting?  Too bad.  Chew on a hundred dull pages of Sansa, Bran, and Theon first, and maybe you'll get some more of her later. Maybe.  if the author feels generous. Rolling Eyes

    I'd be interested to hear your thoughts if/when you do get around to reading Black Earth.  That, and if you want, I may be able to help point you towards which CA books you will and won't like depending on which Untold stories you most enjoy, or what you most want out of a fiction read.
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    Re: Kindle Deals: Black Earth books on sale

    Post  Reed Benson on April 17th 2018, 11:28 pm

    Rohelf wrote:The excerpt used for Black Earth on the Untold podcast was the prologue, right?  The bit about the immortal girl wishing she could die?  I agree, that was a strong excerpt, and an interesting character concept.  Unfortunately, I remember there being very little of her in the book.  (Just double-checked my old notes.  After the prologue, she appears in only three more chapters... out of fifty-two.)

    That's the one. There was also a short story called "The Spigot," I think, that was part of the universe but stood by itself. I wasn't overly engaged with it when I heard it, so I was hoping that reading the books would make it mean more to me.

    That's one of the other things I found frustrating about Black Earth; there are so many characters and plotlines that answers and resolutions take forever to come around.  It's similar in that aspect to the later books of A Song of Ice and Fire or the Wheel of Time, if you've read either of those series.  The author has so much going on that it's almost impossible to care about every plot, and you get annoyed when the ones you like get put on hold for the ones you don't.  Oh, you think Daenerys is cool?  You think her journey is interesting?  Too bad.  Chew on a hundred dull pages of Sansa, Bran, and Theon first, and maybe you'll get some more of her later. Maybe.  if the author feels generous. Rolling Eyes

    I haven't read either of those, but I understand the frustration with too many storylines. I've read books and watched TV shows where I wasn't interested in one plot line and really wanted to get through that section to get to the other one that i liked. I can't think of any specifics at the moment, though.

    I'd be interested to hear your thoughts if/when you do get around to reading Black Earth.  That, and if you want, I may be able to help point you towards which CA books you will and won't like depending on which Untold stories you most enjoy, or what you most want out of a fiction read.

    Thanks! I can tell you right off the bat that Matt's three stories about the leprechaun were some of my favorites on Untold. Especially the first one. I was actually thinking of making a blog post listing my favorite stories and linking to them. Thanks for reminding me.
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    Re: Kindle Deals: Black Earth books on sale

    Post  Rohelf on April 18th 2018, 4:38 pm

    It seems like most of Alderman's short stories fit into his Black Earth / Expired Reality universe somehow. "The Spigot" still has some things about it that don't make sense unless (I assume) you've read all the novels (or at least, more than I did), but it works as a solo piece. Others (like Doors of Babel from the same anthology), not so much. As someone who really digs thorough and skillful worldbuilding, I'm disappointed in Alderman's tendency to resort to what I call Negative Exposition- when an author's answer to a question not only doesn't help you understand the thing you asked about any better, but actually creates more questions.

    For example, imagine a fantasy novel where the protagonist is guided through a strange forest at night, and sees eerie purple lights flickering in the distant underbrush. Naturally, both the protagonist, and through him the reader, will want to know what's up with that. If the narrator or mentor character says only, "Those are the Lanterns of Morath," that doesn't really answer anything. Sure, we now have a name to call the thing, but we haven't actually learned anything about it. Is it natural, man-made, or magical? Hostile, friendly, or neutral? Common or rare? Does seeing it mean anything? Can we use it to navigate on moonless nights, or know when predators are near or the weather is about to change? Not only did we not get a useful answer to our initial question, but the answer we got creates more questions. Who or what is Morath? What is his/her/its connection to the lights? That's why I call it Negative Exposition- rather than solving questions, it multiplies them. Prepare to encounter it in Black Earth. Maybe if you read the entire thing, every novel, in both companion series, you'll finally get the answers to questions you've been asking since End of the Innocence, but I feel like that's asking for more patience than most readers have to give. Kind of like how some people swear that the DC film universe has a grand long-term plan that will make everything worthwhile and we just have to sit through the full arc... but most audiences aren't willing to sit through two bad films to get to a good one.

    Yeah, I really like Matt's leprechaun stories, too, but then, I'm biased. Wink Probably my other top picks from Untold would be Richard Mills' two stories ("Within" and "Prism Break"), Jess Hanna's "If It Causes You to Sin," and Justin Lowmaster's "Flood of Terror."

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