Book of the Day resumes in 2017

book-of-the-day

Caribbean Books Foundation’s Book of the Day promotional book feature resumes in 2017. It will run from the 1st January to 30 November 2017. 

Books from the online catalog are chosen randomly and by genre to fill this feature and are usually set a month in advance.

Authors who join the online catalog at http://www.caribbeanbooks.org are also welcomed to request a date to be featured if the date correspondence with a book launch or book giveaway.

Caribbean Books Foundation is an international platform that connects the Caribbean Community and its Diaspora through its literature.

 

 

 

 

No longer a hobby…

A year ago I went to a fashion show; each designer had at least twelve pieces of clothing. They each got their fifteen minutes on the catwalk and wowed. Models came out in style, designers bowed with their collection and they were ready to take orders. I sat there and imagined the catwalk full of authors with their books on show.

How many of us have one published book to walk down the catwalk proudly with?  How many of us have five to twenty works of writing to exhibit? At that time I had only one, that was properly edited and really public ready. I had a number of finished-to-edit and unfinished manuscripts with too many potential stories. I imagined my models on the catwalk with only one finished dress. The rest of my collection would be missing buttons or bottoms (endings). All the sides wouldn’t be sewn up; some would be hung together with pins.  I winched as I sat there thinking about my wild and crazy fashion show. Unlike a designer my product couldn’t be reviewed in fifteen minutes but all artists have one thing in common. They have to complete their work before they can show it and sell it.

Not one of those designers came to the show with one dress because it didn’t matter how dynamic that one dress was, it meant one sale while a collection meant multiple orders. An art gallery has the same mind-set. One glorious painting at the middle of the gallery you would never see. There is certain power in numbers: numbers to attract different tastes, numbers to widen the profit margin and numbers to establish a brand.

As a writer my brand is my books but I realized I wasn’t writing enough.

I know that writing isn’t a race and a fashion designer and artist isn’t a writer but the principle of sales is universal. If you have one product in a certain market, there is a point of saturation for that one dress/book. Soon your fans will look to see what else you have on the market. If you have a collection it is very likely they will buy another dress/piece if they loved the first but if you have nothing else to offer they move on.

That is the year I made up my mind to treat my writing as a business and stop calling it a hobby.

I stopped looking at one book and started to plan for the collection. I’ve known a number of authors who have published one book and the marketing work they did could have definitely covered five books at the same time. I placed my manuscripts in categories, I gave myself a monthly target of words and I made time to write even if it meant missing sleep and socializing.  When I print I want to have a very diverse book launch, nevertheless I have been publishing e-books as I go along.

One year later I have two distinct genres, the first is paranormal/folklore fantasy fiction which I write under the pen M. Mckie and children books which I write under Aunty Marsha Books. My collection is not yet complete but I like what I see and I build on it every day. My target is three books per year after the first launch (2017) in each category. I will also like to explore the young adult genre, contemporary romance and more magical realism in the future.

Feel free to follow me on Facebook, Book likes and Goodreads for occasional giveaways and new releases.

My website is http://www.marshagomes.com.

The Magic Cave Series


Samantha, Alan and Mark go on a magical, mythical adventure in an awe-inspiring cave. Each trip leads to different worlds and opens clues to their past. They meet mythical creatures and there is a new fairy-tale world created by Aarti Gosine’s. Get all three books and read one after the next.

These books are precious and every Caribbean youngster will love them. They are full of folklore, fantasy and adventure.

The books are well paced for children in this age group. The one thing I like about the books is that the children work with the adults.

It’s a great coming of age adventure.

If I Never Went Home by Ingrid Persaud

A BOOK REVIEW

If i never went home

I appreciated the realness of the story as it looked at growing up in the Caribbean in a small village and the effects that it had on both of the main characters in Trinidad and even after migrating to Boston.  The certainty that your childhood stays with you and shapes you into the person you become or doesn’t become holds true and it was well portrayed.

I have to admit that I took a while to get accustomed to the fact that the story had two main voices because Bea had frequent flashbacks to her childhood when the second character, Tina was also a child. I did a bit of re-reading before I could find my bearings. Nevertheless once found, I read it with ease and comfort.

I would have liked to find out more about how Bea made the transition from patient to doctor after that final blow with her mother. She didn’t have any support to overcome it and she had a bad track record. Her character matured somewhere in the book to take that leap of faith in the end and I was waiting for the flashback to go through it with her. I am also a sucker for a happy romantic ending and I was looking forward to at least one, but my bubble got burst quickly especially with the good doctor.  I connected with Tina, a very strong character who was dealt a hard deal in life and she pushed back, sometimes too hard while forgetting to develop principles of her own. Life really isn’t about how much you fall and she persevered into my heart as I routed for her in spite of and would love to hear more about her story.

The book touched on many family issues and lifestyle consequences like incest, adultery, divorce, domestic violence and everything in between.

This is my first read from the author Ingrid Persaud and I look forward to reading other books from her.

This review was completed through Caribbean Books Foundation review programme contact marsha(a)caribbeanbook.org

The Protectors’ Pledge by Danielle McClean

A BOOK REVIEW

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JV our resident hero is a darling and he could be your little brother or your big brother – a cousin, nephew or uncle. He is very much a Caribbean youth. His adventure is the “bush” adventure we all dream of as a kid but our mothers, well my mother never let me near the forest. He has a peppery grandma and gets in trouble when he disobeys her.

The village comes with a nosy neighbor, a market with tamarind balls, and someone named Mr. Chin.

The story is believable and it flows wonderfully. There are a few additions though, of the mythical folklore-ish kind.

I love folklore and Danielle effortlessly weaves a web that entertains and teaches.

This review was completed through Caribbean Books Foundation review programme contact marsha(a)caribbeanbook.org

 

Selima and the Merfolk by Vanessa Salazar

A BOOK REVIEW

selima and the merfolk

I am a sucker for happy ending so whenever I read a book, I secretly say to myself please don’t let this be an undercover tragedy. I get so caught up in a book that I literally feel like throwing it if the ending is horrid. (ok I have thrown some.)

I am pleased to report that ‘Selima and the Merfolk’ was enchanting. The book was full of beautiful descriptions and real emotions. It captured the local culture perfectly; anyone who has been to the beach Vanessa Salazar writes about will search their memory to remember those rocks. Youngsters and adults will relate to it. In the end I felt a little worried about Dave’s relationship but I look forward to enjoying more magic as the second book is published. I hope the manuscript is already in the works.

Overall, ‘Selima and the Merfolk’ was a refreshing read.

I felt like driving up to Las Cuevas, as I am in Trinidad to see if I can cross the jagged rocks into the isolated beach and find the hidden pool. Maybe I will someday.

This review was completed through Caribbean Books Foundation review programme contact marsha(a)caribbeanbook.org

Inner City Girl by Colleen Smith-Dennis

A BOOK REVIEW

Inner city girl

The strange thing about dialect is that it isn’t universal. It enriches a book for a particular market but sets it apart for another. Whenever I try to figure out what a “slang/colloquial” word may mean, it usually isn’t what it means. Months after in conversation I get that enlightened look and have to go back to the book.

Inner City girl started with heavy dialect. The conversation was rich enough to have me regretting I ever lent out my copy of “Cote ci Cote la.”

The book however would be nothing without it. The heavy dialect did more to frame the poverty than any other words. I could almost hear Martina’s mother’s slurs and understood Martina’s need to be different. The book outgrew the dialect as Martina grew: simple and subtle. The story was unique, a passionate advocate for overcoming life obstacles with determination. Another good read.

This review was completed through Caribbean Books Foundation review programme contact marsha(a)caribbeanbook.org.

All Over Again by A-dziko Simba Gegele

A BOOK REVIEW

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Growing up there must have been someone in your life to make you understand A-dziko’s words … “That is what he says and you wonder how that happens, how talking means you are a big man and not talking means you are a big man. And just as you are trying to figure out if you should keep quiet, or if you should talk or if you should run, out comes more unreasonableness.”

All over again captivated me and took me back years.

I laughed out loud and fell in love with each one of the characters. I will recommend this book to everyone not just Caribbean nationals because the theme is universal.

Growing up is a journey that is all yours and no one can live it for you.

Cheers!

This review was completed through Caribbean Books Foundation review programme contact marsha(a)caribbeanbook.org.

It’s time to start

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I dreamt about a Duck with red boots, a frog who didn’t like to eat flies, a hungry caterpillar and a moose who liked to drink juice.

I dreamt about a butterfly, who told stories while sitting on a piece of old wood, of pink skies and mango colored rainbows.

A diamond shattered bracelet, a man who knew how to fix it. A moon so bright beside stars with red lights.

A soucouyant and a banyan tree, a mystery and a robbery.

I dreamt of dreaming and woke up laughing, it’s good to know that you are still there, waiting …

It’s been a while and i neglect to invite you to awake with me,

I promise to put pen to paper another day

Look at how the day has passed.

I’ll dream another dream of dreaming, please don’t think of leaving.

I know I neglect to invite you to come with me, but I promise to put pen to paper today.