Saturday, 17 March 2018

... And I Am Back!!!

I will keep this short and to the point, but I am back at in the writing game, and it feels great. I tried over the last three years to get into Twisted Fate, but unfortunately for everyone who's been waiting for Fate's Revenge to come out, I was whacked upside the head with life. First, I put aside everything and started a new job. Within this post, I worked hard to obtain my CAIB designation, which I was able to obtain in just eight-and-a-half months while this usually takes two years for all four exams. Not only did I finish quicker than most, I earned the top mark for 2017 within my region, and I find out this month (hopefully) if I have earned the top Canadian mark for 2017.

​That is the fun stuff. Unfortunately, it hasn't all been sunshine and rainbows. In January of 2015, I moved across provinces to continue work as a claims adjuster; however, in October of 2015, everyone within my division was laid off. At that point, I didn't know if I should move back or stay, and what I should do if I did stay as I didn't think I really wanted to continue as an adjuster due to the long hours and the stress related to the job. My daughter was doing fantastic in the new school system, but I didn't want to take the time away from her on evenings and weekends, so I went and wrote the exam for a general insurance license, and a week level obtained my level two general insurance license. At this point, I started to work as an agent for a direct writer, but again I did not enjoy this. So I moved to a brokerage . . . It has been a lot of work, learning the different aspects of the new role and increasing my education, but I feel like I finally know what it is I like to do with my days, and it leaves time on evenings and weekends for not only my daughter (who is now nine-years-old!), but for writing.

​Again, this was sidelined, though. In the summer of 2016 my grandfather passed away and then in April of 2017, my father passed away during the time that my daughter and I were moving to be closer to my job yet again. To say that I tried to fill my time with anything but thinking​ would be an understatement. Now, within the past few months, my mum has been getting worse and worse. We travelled home for Christmas and she seemed to be in great spirits, but the medication she was on made her quite . . . loopy is the only word that comes to mind. We spent two weeks and finally it was time to come home. A few weeks later, we had to go back as she was hospitalized and a lot of scary diagnoses were made. That said, she is home again and tests are continuing, and there is nothing to do but wait - hope for the best and prepare for the worst. Cliché, I know, but it is true nonetheless.

​So while we were home and spending hours in the hospital, I started to reread the books in the Twisted Fate series. Not only did I remember what I loved about the story, I remembered how lost I became in my writing, and how much that can help during trying times. For anyone that has been waiting for the next installment, I apologize for the delay. I hope you can bear with me a little longer while I become reacquainted with the world of writing, and I promise that Fate's Revenge is soon to come.

​Cheers!

​Sasha Leigh

Monday, 29 June 2015

CONSUME BOOK REVIEW

Consume (The Clann, #3)Consume by Melissa Darnell

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


First off (the one negative) I do not like is that Savannah tends to give up quite easily and seems to fight only when prompted to do so. However, I do enjoy the fact that she has a strong set of morals and sticks to her beliefs stubbornly. The fights with Tristan - the way they butt heads now that they can actually be together - was endearing, though I couldn't understand how a girl who wanted something so bad could set it aside so quickly. There wasn't enough effort on the characters' parts to hold onto what they seemed to want for so long. Sure, there is an adjustment period after the kind of change that was affected at the conclusion of the second novel, but really? Come one. I get wanting the mother/father approval and having danger to worry about every time you so much as blink, but that's when you stop pushing away the hot guy you drooled over for years. Don't push him away. (Just my opinion) I think that there was enough obstacles for the characters to overcome - there was some great action scenes - without having to keep the relationship on the cusp of togetherness as it had been in the previous installments.

Savannah's struggle for her friends and family to accept her and be okay with her i.e. not terrified of her throughout the first three novels was well-plotted and I enjoyed how the author tied this up. The end was somewhat predictable; however, I enjoyed the twists Darnell threw in and look forward to the upcoming adventures to see how things continue for other members of The Clann. I gave this book five stars because, despite my "issues", it is a great series and still one of the best books I have read in a long time.



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COVET BOOK REVIEW

Covet (The Clann, #2)Covet by Melissa Darnell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


The second book picks up right where the first one leaves off. Within the first few chapters, I had tears in my eyes, which I assumed boded well for the rest of the story. The connection between reader and character(s) was well established, the flow was relatively fast-paced (necessary to remain immerse, IMO), problems we can all root for to be solved were developed . . . and then it just died off. At least, it did for me.

I found myself skimming through the pages even though nothing had really changed. Savannah continued to discover more about her new life as her whole world changed, the tension continued to build between her and Tristan, readers discovered more about her friends - and their other half's - and Savannah faced obstacles she only had herself to rely on to navigate out of. Maybe it was because it felt like Savannah didn't fight or because book one was so good - I couldn't help but notice the difference in formatting, either, which was a minor distraction.

By the end, though, I was able to fall back into the story. It was explosive. Because of the beginning and end, I would recommend this to friends and picked up the third novel to see exactly how Tristan and Savannah's story ends.



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CRAVE BOOK REVIEW

Crave (The Clann, #1)Crave by Melissa Darnell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


I bought the first novel in this series during a grocery shopping trip a couple of years ago and set it aside - there's nothing I dislike more than having to wait for the next installment once beginning a series. Then I bought the second . . . and when I unpacked my books, I realized the third had been released (though I had to order it because it was out of stock).

It was worth the wait.

Sav thought she was just a normal, run-of-the-mill invisible girl with annoyingly loyal friends until she woke up after becoming black-out sick. I assumed, at this point, the story would take the cliché turns, but I was pleasantly surprised. Though I am not a huge fan of multiple POV's, I really enjoyed being able to see the story from both Savannah and Tristan's perspectives. Without it, the full depth of their shared history wouldn't be understood and their intense connection to one another would've felt cliché. Tristan is overprotective but understanding and Savannah, unlike other kick-ass dhamphirs, is vulnerable as she tries to figure out where her new curse/gifts will take her.

While these are motives reused, Darnell gives us a combination of old tales with a new spin. The fight these characters put up is admirable and I love the unexpected ending. Darnell's given readers a witty, keep-them-wanting-more love story that'll force you to pick up book two . . . even if you have to play hooky for a day to complete it.



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Monday, 22 June 2015

IGNITE ME BOOK REVIEW

Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3)Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I finished this series in a day, it was that addictive. Juliette's journey is astounding and the choices the author makes surprising. Although I can't say my favorites without giving away the end, I will say that it does not follow the "norm" and leaves room for a continuance (without leaving loose ends) should the author decide. Juliette's triumph isn't in how the series end, however, it's in the personal growth she's obtained simply by accepting who she is and following through with the choices she's made.

I love, love, love the metaphors in this series. I am an hourglass. The third book starts with such a powerful line, it's impossible not to fall for the poetic fluidity of the writing, though if I were reading it aloud, sometimes I would feel like I had a bout of OCD. My daughter is only six-years-old, so I would never let her read this because of the violence. However, in another six or seven years, I may just read it with her and edit out the sex so she can discover that there are strong, powerful females. I hope this is one of those series that are made into movies a TV series so I can watch it at least once a week.



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