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One Last Thing

Well, my friends, it's time to say goodbye. As announced two weeks ago, we're shutting down shop. It's been five years of wonderful books, wonderful people, and plenty of randomness, but it's time to move along and discover shiny new things. All posts here will stay as they are; I won't be deleting or erasing anything. I wish you all a lifetime of excellent books.

As promised, I'm leaving you a few resources before I disappear.

Where can I get my book geekiness fix now? There's a plethora of wonderful book blogs or book-related blogs out there! But sometimes it's hard to figure out which are good to follow, so allow me to share a few of my favourites. The Book Smugglers are full of great reviews and giveaways (mostly sf/f and YA), and I think I might be lynched if I didn't mention the fabulosity of Smart Bitches (primarily romance novels, but there is a reviewer who focuses on romantic sf/f and the book discussions are just amazing). I'm pretty sure everyone in the world should be following jimhines (not a book blog per se, but he does occasionally review, and a big portion of his posts are very book-centric, especially including his ingenious cover art recreations), and I always enjoy both janicu and calico_reaction, although both have been cutting back on the posting lately.

What's a good way to keep up with e-book deals? There are quite a few places you can look to find what's current for e-book deals. A lot of authors get excited when their books are discounted and will do what they can to let people know, so if your favourite authors have newsletters or twitter accounts, it's not a bad idea to follow them so you can be notified when they have something that goes for cheap. There are other blogs that highlight books on sale (Dear Author has a post almost daily), and being what it is, Amazon has quite a few places you can check for books on sale, the prices of which are often matched at other e-book retailers. There's The Big Deal (sortable by genre), Monthly Deals, and Daily Deals. There's also their Limited Time Offers, but I'm honestly not sure how often that gets updated.

Where else can you find me? Well, you can always follow me as _ocelott_, where I ramble about life and other geeky things. Updates in the past have been pretty sporadic, but without a full-time blog to maintain, it seems likely I'll pop over there a little more frequently. I also have a twitter account, and if you're keen on seeing what I'm reading, I'm on Goodreads. There won't be many full reviews like there have been in the past, but if you see I've read something you can always poke and ask what I thought of it.

And with that, I leave you with a short list of the best or most popular of Genre Reviews:

-Pirate by Fabio
-Strong Female Characters
-But nowhere yet such horsemen have I seen
-How to trick a blogger into thinking you believe they're a person
-Men's Versus Women's Poses
-Gender and Book Covers: the romance novel edition
-Off With Her Head!
-The evils of libraries
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Job Interview of Gold

We've made it all the way to the weekend, and as a celebration, how 'bout we all sit and watch our weekly movie together?

This week's offering is a particularly silly one, featuring a man going on a job interview at a respected law firm while only giving the answers fed to him by a seven-year-old boy. I think my son and I should do this pretty well any time I step outside the house.

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Thursday E-book Deals

It's Thursday, which means in just one more day we can do the weekend dance. Clearly this means it's time to celebrate with e-books on sale. Of course, I can't think of any occasion that doesn't require books on sale as part of the celebration, but that's neither here nor there.

Fine print applies. Links go to Amazon. While some offers may be available at other retailers, I make no guarantees. Those of us who live outside the US may or may not be allowed to buy the same things at the same prices. Prices were accurate when this post went up, but publishers are fickle and can change them at any time. And so on and so forth.

-Lancelot And The Wolf by Sarah Luddington, Arthurian fantasy, 0.98$
-The Second Ship by Richard Phillips, sci-fi, 0.99$
-The Hunter by Theresa Meyers, paranormal steampunk romance, 1.99$
-The Journals of Raymond Brooks by Amit Bobrov, fantasy, 1.99$
-The Timekeeper's Moon by Joni Sensel, YA fantasy, 1.99$
-Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore, humour, 2.22$
-The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy, YA fairy tale retelling, 2.22$
-Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta, YA mystery/thriller, 2.22$
-Once Burned by Jeaniene Frost, paranormal romance, 2.22$
-A Long, Long Sleep by Anna Sheehan, YA sci-fi retelling of Sleeping Beauty, 2.93$
-Darker Still by Leanna Renee Hieber, gothic historical fantasy, 2.94$
-American Diva by Julia London, contemporary romance, 2.97$
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Enclave by Ann Aguirre

Series: Razorland
Publisher: Macmillan, 2011
Genre: Science Fiction
Sub-genre: Dystopian, YA
Rating: 3 1/2 pints of blood

I'm honestly not sure how I feel about the cover art. Certainly it's eye-catching, all shiny and embossed, and the cold and creepy feel of it evokes a mood. I can't quite decide whether the mood is one that fits the book or not. Then again, this is a story that makes some drastic changes near the halfway point, so it would be difficult to create a cover that would feel appropriate for the book as a whole.

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Anna's Blogging Tips

Yeah, ok, I might be shutting down this week, but that doesn't mean I've learned nothing in the past five years of blogging. There are quite a few things I wish I'd known before I started up, so a few of these are really more notes to my pre-blogging self than anything else, but if you happen to be here and have been considering getting into a bit of your own blogging, you might find a nugget or two in here, too.

So here are some of the more significant things I've learned (in no particular order):

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Bloggers, man. Crazy folks, amirite?
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Moms On The Net

You know what's amazing? The internet! It's a lovely thing we have here, and it's not just for technogeeks with spreadsheets, or so I hear. And hey, did you know that if you take an ordinary mom (complete with giant glasses and mom jeans), you can turn her into a Mom On The Net with just a few clicks of the mouse? It's like crazy awesome! Almost as crazy awesome as the cameo at the end of this week's Friday Night Movie.

This is the reason he's an actor-slash-model, and not the other way around.
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Thursday E-book Deals

What's that? A shiny new bundle of e-book deals for you, just because it's Thursday? Why, yes!

A quick note: since I announced my impending retirement, there have been quite a few questions, the most common being if I'd be willing to reveal my super secret sources for the weekly e-book deals. And the answer is yes! My last post will be full of both recommendations and sources. Don't worry, guys, I won't be leaving you in the lurch.

The usual disclaimers apply: All links lead to Amazon. Some deals may be available at other e-book retailers, but no guarantees. Not all countries' currencies are created equal, apparently, and some deals may not apply to those of us outside the US. Yadda yadda, on with the deals.

-The Unseen by Alexandra Sokoloff, dark fantasy/occult mystery, 0$
-Sacred Bloodlines by Wendy Owens, YA paranormal, 0.98$
-The Scent of Shadows by Vicki Pettersson, 0.99$
-Eternity by Maggie Shayne, paranormal romance, 0.99$
-How Beauty Met the Beast by Jax Garren, paranormal steampunk, 1.98$
-The Importance of Being Wicked by Victoria Alexander, historical romance, 1.99$
-Journey of Awakening by Shawna Thomas, epic fantasy, 2.51$
-How to Lose a Demon in 10 Days by Saranna DeWylde, paranormal romance, 2.97$
-Vacant Graves by Christopher Beats, steampunk, 2.98$
-Steampunk! An Anthology of Fantastically Rich and Strange Stories, 3.96$
-The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E Pearson, YA dystopian, 4.65$

End of the Century by Chris Roberson

Series: Bonaventure-Carmody
Publisher: Pyr, 2009
Genre: Fantasy
Sub-genre: Alternate history/time travel
Rating: 3 pints of blood

This is yet another case where the cover art appealed to me enough to get me to pick the thing up. There's some fantastic use of colour, our female character is standing in a way easily replicated by someone with a human skeleton, and our premise is pretty clearly stated here. We have three very different young people from three very different time periods coming together in this book, and that has all kinds of potential. Therefore... it is mine!

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The Best of Bad Fiction

Some books are so amazing they blow your mind and stay with you forever. Others find a warm and comfy little spot in your heart to nestle, and hang out close to you on the shelf with all your comfort re-reads. Some you read and forget almost as soon as you move on to the next thing. And then there are those that stick in your memory for all the wrong reasons. They're either unintentionally hilarious, or so full of moments that make you go "wtf" that you just can't scrub it from your brain (and part of you doesn't want to, because telling people all about how unbelievable this book is is kind of fun). Let's face it, the very best of bad fiction is fun, even if that's not what the author wanted you to get out of it. My personal favourite, of course, was penned by Fabio (at least nominally). Pirate was unintentionally hilarious in the way of B movies, and I had so much fun with it I actually tried to read one or two of his other novels. Sadly, they didn't fare as well with the hilarity.

So... what's the best, most awful book you've read, and what particular part prompts you to tell other people about it to share the horror glory?
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I suspect this won't be one of my more popular posts, but I have some news I need to share with you all. I've done a lot of thinking on this subject, and in the end, there was really only one decision I could come to.

We're shutting down.

I'm sure some of you have seen this coming for a long time now. There are a number of reasons behind this decision. As of just a couple of weeks ago, Genre Reviews has been running for five years now, and a lot has changed in that time, both in the blogging world and in my personal life. It's a lot easier to find thoughtful reviews of genre fiction now than it used to be, and there are any number of places you can find fantastic discussions about the ins and outs of the books you're reading or even a more broad discussion about the types of books we've focused on over here. As for me, I have more children (and therefore less time) than I did when I started the blog, and those kids have gotten older and started, like, wanting hobbies and books of their own.

There's also a lot of potential pressure in maintaining a book blog. A review almost always takes me hours to write, and on occasion it's taken longer for me to figure out what I want to say in my review than it has to read the book in the first place. There's a lot more involved in blogging than I would ever have expected when I started things up, and while Genre Reviews has been a wonderful experience that allowed me to meet a plethora of amazing people and has led to some really engaging conversations, I'm tired. I've put perhaps more pressure on myself than was needed to keep up to date with publishing news, with new releases, with the trends, and to post as closely to every day as I could manage, and it turns out that after five years of that sort of self-induced pressure, you start to burn out. Who knew, right?

There will be updates through the next two weeks, as per usual, and after that point this will be an archived blog. I'll leave all the posts intact, there just won't be any more new updates after that point. And of course, I'll still be around in any of the other places you can find me here on the internets, if you feel like chumming around that way. So, you know, here's your fair warning, and I'll see you all here again tomorrow.