Tag: fanfiction

RoseBlood by A.G. Howard is a beautiful book. That was my first reaction when I saw it. It’s just a beautiful book. You can tell extra work went into the design. The text is blood-red and the chapters have very lovely red decoration. The cover is beautiful, almost breathtakingly so. I was given this book as a gift from K. Leigh, and the second I saw the cover I wanted to read it. She had asked me if I had read a book where the Phantom was a female, to which I had responded that I have not. Then, when she surprised me with the book, I was enchanted. As soon as I had the chance, I read it.

The summary from Goodreads is:

“In this modern-day spin on Leroux’s gothic tale of unrequited love turned to madness, seventeen-year-old Rune Germain has a mysterious affliction linked to her operatic talent, and a horrifying mistake she’s trying to hide. Hoping creative direction will help her, Rune’s mother sends her to a French arts conservatory for her senior year, located in an opera house rumored to have ties to The Phantom of the Opera.

At RoseBlood, Rune secretly befriends the masked Thorn—an elusive violinist who not only guides her musical transformation through dreams that seem more real than reality itself, but somehow knows who she is behind her own masks. As the two discover an otherworldly connection and a soul-deep romance blossoms, Thorn’s dark agenda comes to light and he’s forced to make a deadly choice: lead Rune to her destruction, or face the wrath of the phantom who has haunted the opera house for a century, and is the only father he’s ever known”

 

Now, this book was good, but it wasn’t the best Phantom-based story I’ve ever read (that honor goes to Susan Kay’s “Phantom.”) My main issue with the story is that it started off rather slow. I was constantly waiting for something to happen. While the multiple attacks of Rune’s ailment were a bit tedious, I loved the idea that Rune’s ailment was temporarily cured by Thorn’s violin playing. It was a cute way to forge a connection between the two.

I was surprised to find that me and K.Leigh were wrong about the story, in that we had assumed by the cover that the story was about a female Phantom. The Phantom of the Opera is in the story, but it is not Rune, the girl on the cover. This did not affect my opinion of the story, but it was a bit confusing as to why they would show her wearing the mask rather than her holding it, as some of the other cover mockups suggest. According to an interview with the author here, they chose the final cover because it also had ties to Howard’s more popular series “Splintered.” While I understand their reasoning for choosing the cover, and it is a truly beautiful cover, it is slightly misleading.

However, once I realized that the mask wasn’t Rune’s, I expected the Phantom to pull his usual tricks and treat her as he did Christine. We don’t really get interaction between the two until a good ways into the novel, which was disappointing. Instead, the connection is between Thorn and Rune. This makes more sense, as the Phantom is quite a bit older than Rune and Thorn is closer to her in age, but still. Is a story truly a Phantom of the Opera story if he’s a minor character?

I really did like this story. It was a joy to read, especially regarding how pretty the book itself is. Heck, I just bought an autographed first-edition. Would I read it again? Heck yes. It’s a great story. Is it worth reading? Very much so. It’s very well written, minus the slow start.

If you’re a Phantom “phan,” it’s a must-read.

 

 

To get your copy of “RoseBlood” by A.G. Howard, go here.

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Calibre

Wow, somehow I must find words to describe the awesomeness that is Calibre. Like, I mean. Seriously. I love Calibre. Almost as much as I love my fiance. Yeah, it’s that awesome.

So, I guess I should tell you guys what Calibre is. According to the website, it’s “the one stop solution to all your e-book needs.” And boy, is it ever!

I have used this software almost as long as I’ve had a Kindle, so quite a few years. It’s so easy to use, especially if you want to put books onto your Kindle (or other device) and it’s in the wrong format. Calibre not only converts, it bulk converts! I’ve done a select-all and bulk converted many times, which saved me so much time. You can sort by author, title, or even file type. This is especially handy when you need to bulk convert from epub to mobi, which I’ve had to do numerous times.

If you get your books from a place other than the official Amazon/B&N ebook store, you can add your books to Calibre. It allows you to edit the metadata so that you can fix the name. This is handy if you have multiple books in a series and want to change the title to reflect which number the book is in the series. I did this with Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series. Now, even if I don’t have internet, I know which book is next in the series.

I also love the convert method. Almost every book I’ve put on my Kindle has had to be converted from epub to mobi. One handy feature is that if you have a lot of comics in the CBR file format, you can use Calibre to convert them into mobi. It doesn’t ruin the comic and the text is still very easy to read.

Then there is the saving grace: you can copy your entire library from your Kindle and put it in a file on your computer. This was very handy for me, as I had most of my ebook files on my other computer. As I mentioned in my last blog post, I’m getting a new Kindle on Friday. I want to have my entire library transferred onto my new Kindle. With Calibre, I was able to take all of my books (many of which were not purchased in the Amazon store) and put them onto my other computer. Now, I’m ready to load up my new Kindle when it arrives.

The one thing that kinda bums me out about Calibre (which is not their fault) is that you cannot natively create collections and add books to them on an un-jailbroken kindle. This is more Amazon’s fault than Calibre, as it requires special access to your Kindle to manage those collections. Kind of a bummer, but with everything else made so easy by Calibre, I’ll take this one caveat.

So, if you’re looking for an effortless way to manage your Kindle or ereader device, I HIGHLY recommend Calibre.

Oh, did I mention it’s FREE!? And available for both PC, Mac, and even a “mobile” version (for Chromebooks!!!)

Yeah, you’ll want to get it here.

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