Attention, Magical Realism! I Review!

The Ends Don’t Tie with Bunny Rabbits isn’t just about my book–it’s a blog for anyone in the magical realism genre. Magical realism is still relatively new compared to other genres of literature.

If this is your first or second time doing a book review request, please carefully read my book review policy below and How to Do a Book Review Request.

*11/20/2015: For a limited time, get a FREE book cover design when your book review request is accepted! Get a book cover that grabs buyers’ attention and stimulates interest. redesign_pearl_river

I’d prefer to review indie or self-published writers, but I’ll review your work as long as it fits into the magical realism genre within 120 pages.

Acceptable genres aside from magical realism:

-science fiction,

-speculative fiction,

-contemporary fiction,

-noir,

-travel writing,

-Japan-related fiction,

-short story collections, and

-children’s stories.

Genres that will NOT be accepted are:

-sports (outside of basketball),

-bizarro,

-horror,

-erotica and/or sex,

-non-fiction,

-historical,

-romance,

-suspense,

-young adult, YA (Harry Potter, Twilight, and books like these will be automatically deleted),

-New Adult,

-poetry, and

-self-help.

If your work isn’t in the magical realism genre, your request may be rejected. Also, accepted reviews may not be posted on this website.

Acceptable reviews will be posted on:

-this blog,

Goodreads,

-Amazon,

-LibraryThing,

-Barnes and Noble,

-iTunes (if an e-book),

-San Diego Book Reviewer Club,

-and Smashwords (please provide a coupon code).

I will deliver a review appropriate to the work’s content, plot and character development, and overall style. I’m also a stickler for grammar (being that I am an English teacher). Please make sure your request and your work(s) follow correct English grammar! Please see my policy on English grammar.

Ways to get a request rejection:

-Attaching anything to the email or request.

-Writing a synopsis with poor grammar or cliche lines.

-Adding how your book compares to other famous books (i.e. “It’s Harry Potter meets Fifty Shades of Grey!”).

-Sending multiple requests and follow-up emails.

-Requesting a review for an unfinished book.

-Not providing a link to a sample available on Amazon.

Ready to request a book request? Fill out the form below!

*Please DO NOT post review requests in the Comments section.

Need something more than a book cover? Check out my Hire an Artist portfolio.

Writers, Editors, Self-Publishing, and English Grammar

I’m a stickler for English grammar. I’m almost a down-right jerk about it—“Hey, where’s the period?”—but there’s a reason: I’m an English speaker. It’s my first and only language. I excelled at English in school because I felt that if English was your one and only language, you should know it inside and out. When it came down to grading my peers’ papers, I was always frustrated. Even now as an adult, I’m still frustrated. Whenever I see people write, “your” instead of “you’re” and “there” instead of “their” or “they’re”, I want to ask them, “Do you know English?”

Mind you, these people that I speak of aren’t just the students sitting in my English class. Writers are culprits to this violation as well. However, writers have a way around it: they get editors. Some of them are human dictionaries-encyclopedias-thesauruses with a $300 price tag.

This is a big issue for self-published writers.

Those of us who are self-published can’t afford an editor. It’s like hiring a psychologist to diagnose and treat a book. The irony? Self-published writers need editors the most.

I’ve seen some self-published books where the best compliment I could give them was, “This reads like fan fiction.” (Sadly, some fan fiction have better content and less grammatical errors than published books). It’s like many (self-published) writers simply press the “spell” button and automatically tag it as reader-friendly. Well, it’s not fun for readers. Actually, readers have to trudge through the run-on sentences, ambiguous descriptions, and ill-placed words before they reach the story. Not that I’m saying writers can’t make mistakes, but writers should keep this in mind: readers can’t read your mind. Readers need a clear, visual cue to reach the vision in your head.

Though the money may be a reason to opt out of a professional editor, sometimes money isn’t the only thing keeping an editor from improving a writer’s work. The writer decides not to get an editor because they’re afraid. The fear of being criticized, judged, and all of those insecure little verbs are enough to hold down a writer from finding an editor. Some people can’t take criticism. But in the world of writing, self-published writers need as much criticism as possible. Sometimes, the criticism comes in the form of reviews, and for writers, these are critical to the sale of their work.

Also, an inflated ego could also stand between a polished self-published work and a mediocre piece of fan fiction. Editors change the run-on sentences into shortened, refined sentences; they shovel out the ambiguous descriptions and bury clear imagery; they cut out the useless words and substitute better words. But some writers are afraid again. They think their sentences and their descriptions using their words don’t need to be changed. They’re the writers, so they know how to write their book. In actuality, it has nothing to do with the writing. It’s all about power. “Once the book is in the editor’s hands, it’s not in my power anymore.” That’s not completely true. An editor isn’t the writer; they edit the writer’s book to put it in the best light. It’s not something to be afraid of. It’s just how it is.

Self-published writers should set aside the egos, the fears, and the funds to get an editor, especially if their grammar is below a high school student’s writing level.

Magical Realism

When I was in college, I liked magical realism–and I didn’t even know it. I read Haruki Murakami, famed author of The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, 1Q84, and Norwegian Wood. In the most simplistic terms, magic or magical realism is a genre where characters in literature are placed in a realistic setting, but something extraordinary happens within the story. Sometimes, that unusual characteristic that borders what’s real and what’s fake is pushed in magical realism, but it still leans towards real in regards to the environment.

In the artistic form, magical realism has a striking resemblance to traditional Surrealism, but there’s one key difference between the two: Surrealism deals with dreams, the unconscious, the sub-conscious while magical realism delves into the fantastical world. One book I’d recommend that shows the artistic form of magical realism is Imaginaire II: Magical Realism, as shown below.

 

[Images from Parka Blogs @ http://parkablogs.com/content/book-review-imaginaire-ii-magic-realism]

In a recent search to find some magical realistic magazines online, I discovered that this genre–though practiced both in literature and art around the world–isn’t so prominent in the public. Surrealism, yes, but magical realism, not so much. Still, I think that people who like anime, manga, comics, fantasy, and science fiction would like magical realism.

Why am I talking about magical realism here? I hope to be a writer in it. As I said, I’m a big fan of Haruki Murakami, and I hope to take the stories I have, like The Ends Don’t Tie with Bunny Rabbits, into the world of magical realism.