Monday, 18 May 2015

Falling for My EBook Reader

If you'd asked me three months ago what I thought of my Kindle, I'd have replied with 'Meh'. Nothing beats the feel of an actual book in my hands, and probably never will. I really didn't like my Kindle, because pushing buttons instead of turning pages was an alien experience to me.

Kindle app on my iPhone

I purchased the first ever Kindle made by Amazon, which I hardly used before it expired on me. I bought the first Kindle Fire in 2013, because it came out around the time I published my two short story collections. I wanted to see mine and my friends book covers in their true colour format. Did I use the Kindle Fire to read? I tried, but soon found staring at a lit screen for more than 20 minutes hurt my eyes. So, in 2014 I bought the cheapest Kindle version. Paper-ink and no light. It cost me £49, and had no purpose other than as an eBook reader. Turned out to be one of the best decisions I've made.

When I hurt my back in March, I found myself in a lot of pain and unable to do anything other than watch television or read. I don't know about you, but there's only so much television I can watch in one day. Even then, I'm not a flick-the-channels kind of viewer. I need something I know I'll enjoy to hold my attention, like a favourite series.

Holding an actual book and keeping the pages open is not the best option when you're laid flat on your back. So, begrudgingly, I turned to my Kindle. It was lightweight enough for me to hold in my hands and read for hours, and had the obvious advantage of being able to instantly download books.

While I'd love to have actual paperback copies of all the books I've read, that's not always practical or affordable. Having my Kindle helped me to fill the long hours and distract me when the pain was at its worse. If I had to recommend an eBook reader to a friend, I would always suggest buying the paper-ink version. Apart from being far lighter than a Kindle or iPad, it doesn't hurt your eyes or, as in my case, removes the risk of inducing a migraine.

How about you? Have you fallen for an eBook reader? Do you use the paper-ink version? As always, I'd love to know your thoughts.

Monday, 11 May 2015

Are You Part of M. Pax's Backworlds Universe? Book 6 Just Launched!

It's always a special day when a new book in M. Pax's science fiction series, The Backworlds, launches. Look at that stunning cover. I've already added Precipice to my Kindle!


In the far future, humanity settles the stars, bioengineering its descendants to survive in a harsh universe. This is the sixth book in the science fiction series, The Backworlds. A space opera adventure.
The Backworlds hang by a Quantum string, a thread about to snap. Annihilation is coming if Craze can’t stop it.
The genocidal alien he had trapped breaks free, destroying a ship belonging to the Backworlds’ oldest enemy, the Fo’wo’s. The murderous alien wants to overtake the galaxy. The Fo’wo’s want another war.
The Backworlds’ best chance to survive is to overcome a century of hate and forge an alliance with the Fo’wo’s. Because of his history with the alien, Craze is recruited to represent his people. Now he’s the most hated man in the galaxy.
The looming war will be a holocaust unless Craze can stop it, knowing salvation comes at a price.

Character Interview Question:

The main character in the Backworlds series is a bartender named Craze. What does one wear in the Backworlds?

Craze:  Everyone does their own thing. Casual is best. Space is dirty and if you want to keep your fine things, best leave the fancy duds at home.


Commander Hunninger tapped an icon on her tab and jabbed it in Craze’s face. “You really want to say no to this?”
The screen was too close. He grabbed the device from her manly fingers and brought the image into focus. A brand new, state-of-the-art, mini city docking facility. Pardeep Station had never seen finer and probably never would. Better protection from the dust storms was a necessity, and folks had to get out of the cold. Craze tired of the stench of the sick. “How much is it goin’ to cost? Everyone on this moon barely has three chips to jangle in their holey pockets.”
“No chips.” She smiled. Her wide mouth contained a lot of very white teeth.

Three good sucks on his air hose and Craze knew he wasn’t dreaming. He narrowed his eyes. “There’s still a price.”

Buy links: Amazon / B&N / iBook / Googleplay / Smashwords / Kobo / Other

About M. Pax:

Fantasy, science fiction, and the weird beckons to her, and she blames Oregon, a source of endless inspiration. She docents at Pine Mountain Observatory in the summers, and one of her cats has a crush on Mr. Spock. You can find out more by visiting her website:

Congratulations, Mary. I'm looking forward to being part of The Backworlds universe again. 

Monday, 4 May 2015

May the 4th Be With You

Although it's an unofficial holiday, May 4th has become a day when fans all over the world celebrate a franchise I've loved for the better part of my life - Star Wars.

I was too young to see the original films at the cinema, so I can't under-sell how much I'm looking forward to seeing The Force Awakens later this year. For me, this is true Star Wars. I'm not the only person in my group of friends who feels this way, and will probably be acting like a kid in a candy store this December.

If you haven't seen the latest teaser, here it is. Enjoy, and may the 4th be with you.