TYMNHS: Voilà by Barbara Pravi

For this edition of Things You Might Not Have Seen, I will talk about the song lyrics for Voilà by Barbara Pravi.

I rarely watch tv, but when I do, I somehow stumble upon gems. This year I caught the Eurovision song contest and the song represented by France. Let us just say that my reaction was this 😍 because my words were incoherent. To describe the feeling? It was like coming across a part of you, out in the world.

I poured over the song lyrics and the feeling became even stronger. This song is a cry of all artists. It is the vulnerability we share after each artistic creation, whether it be a painting, or a piece of writing, music, or anything else. “Love me”, our hearts collectively ask, but are too vulnerable to say out loud.

If you like to hear the song yourself, here is the official link for it:

To say I am obsessed with this song would be an understatement. I hope Voilà can convey to you how much artists want to be heard, seen, felt through our arts (that includes me with my writing).

I hope that you liked today’s blog post. Thank you for dropping by 😊

New Romantic Comedy: Midnight Prince 👑

This was a little unexpected, and I am as surprised as you are, but I just released a new comedy novella. It is titled Midnight Prince.

I realized that the last few novels I wrote were a tad on the serious side, and I wanted to remedy that immediately 😂 I just didn’t think I would finish it this quickly. Maybe I should plan a ‘novel- comedy novella- novel’ pattern of book release from now on to keep my creative process flowing? 🙃

So, what is Midnight Prince about?

Here is the book’s blurb:

🧹A witch’s curse 🐸 Frog by day🤴🏽 Prince at Midnight.

Milos saves the faerie king from the witch’s curse. The upset witch turns him into a frog. Now he needs a kiss from the king’s daughter, but the problem is that the princess is on the witch’s side. Is Milos doomed to stay a frog forever?

This is a romantic comedy 🥰 I think that you will enjoy the four main characters: unlucky Prince Milos; blundering King Eldas; rebellious Princess Kitty; and a hardworking but upset witch, Agnes. Their individual stories and character arcs have surprising endings, and were a lot of fun to write.

I hope that you check the story out!

Midnight Prince is available to purchase at http://books2read.com/MNP (Only $0.99)

It will soon be available as paperback on Amazon: http://mybook.to/MNP

Thank you for reading today’s blog post. I hope that you have a great day!

TYMNHS: Animated short film, The Wrong Rock

In this edition of Things You Might Not Have Seen, I will talk about the award-winning, short animated fantasy film, The Wrong Rock by Michael Cawood.

The film is a story about equality, told through the adventures of a brave mushroom. Martin, a mushroom, was born on the wrong rock. Martin’s pure heart and passion is unlike the people who he grew up around. He just wants to find a place he can be himself.

Martin overcomes enormous challenges, including crossing a ocean to a far away rock, where he hopes to find acceptance. Along the way Martin experiences other character’s bigotry and bias. Despite all his challenges, Martin finds his inner glow and happiness, and becomes a shining beacon for all the other mushrooms.

The movie’s director, Michael Cawood, has an inspiring message: “I wanted to tap into the themes that affected me as an immigrant. Before we can change the world, we must put aside our differences. After all, we’re all on the same rock!”

The Wrong Rock won Best Animated Short at both the Burbank International Film Festival and the Davis International Film Festival. The short film has a great original song and score that adds to the emotional theme of despair, then hope, and courage to follow your dreams.

There are great messages in this short film, such as the journey to your dreams may not be easy, but your determination will help you reach there. You will be rooting for the main protagonist (even if he is a mushroom 🍄) and find yourself feeling emotional at his heartbreaks.

I hope that you give this short film a chance. You can find out more about the Indie movie here: http://heromation.com/about_heromation

Thank you for reading today’s blog post. I hope that you discovered something new today 😊

This blog can be found as a podcast at anchor.fm/aisha-urooj

Writerly Thoughts

Hi everyone,

I was glad that my Indie April blog posts were productive and that I was able to review many great Indie books last month. Since it has been a while, I wanted to update you all on where I am in my writing, and what my goals are for the coming months.

Book review goals:

I would love to get more ratings/reviews. It is always a thrill to hear back from readers (and to know that they are enjoying my books). The Stone Mermaid has received a few reviews since its February release, which is wonderful. I hope that more readers will give my romance fantasy a chance, and add it to their reading list ❤

Book marketing/promotion/ads:

This still remains a elusive, magical unicorn to a mere mortal like me 🥺 The ultimate dream is to have people buy my books because of word of mouth and others readers’ recommendations. I will continue working hard. I won’t stop until I can write a book that is emotionally resonant and that moves your hearts. I promise you this 😊

My current WIP (work in progress):

Sleeping Beauty No More will release in mid July. Each book that I write seem to have different writing challenges. I went through a dull phase while writing, which thankfully has passed. I feel like this book will be better shorter, but we will see. I was feeling meh about this book until I added a Romeo/Juliet side arc. I will also pay homage to other scenes that I feel are the most romantic in literature. The book became more exciting by adding a dragon 😆🐉

Writers write about writer’s block (😅) but there is another challenge that I face: When the ideas/thoughts rushes in like a flash flood. In those crazy moments of crashing thoughts, I get paralyzed and can’t type/write fast enough. I know that some writers use dictating programs to record their ideas. Maybe I will look into this, but I hesitate as I will have to get used to hearing myself recording, lol. I have lost a few great ideas/dialogues/scenes because I couldn’t write them down, and then I forget them when I sat to write 😔

These are all the thoughts for today 😊Thank you for reading this blog post and for following me on my writing journey.

I hope that you have a wonderful day!

My upcoming book is available on Pre-order if you like to check it out: books2read.com/SBNM

This blog can be found as a podcast at anchor.fm/aisha-urooj

Indie April Book Review: Black Ships by A.G. Claymore

Hi everyone,

For today’s blog post (and the last book featured for Indie April) is the alien invasion Sci Fi thriller, The Black Ships by A.G. Claymore.

I chose a genre that I don’t normally read (but definitely watch), so this was a new thing for me.

What was the story about?

First in the Black Ships Series. Our planet was just one small island in the midst of a vast, empty sea. For millennia, we thought we were alone – until we took our first tentative steps out of the cradle. As the nations of Earth struggle to establish a fragile colony on the surface of Mars, we suddenly lose all contact with our settlers. In the days that follow, it becomes abundantly clear that humans are not the only ones intent on exploiting the resources of the solar archipelago. In a desperate bid for freedom, Humanity must undergo social and economic changes on a scale previously unheard of. In the midst of growing turmoil, the struggle to build an effective defense leads the species to a turning point. The smallest of chances may determine the difference between freedom or eternal subjugation.

The book delivers on its promise and starts with an nail-biting alien invasion. The year is 2026 (not too far away), and aliens have attacked a human team sent to Mars. The US government (and others) on Earth must decide whether or not this is a threat, a mistake, or something else, while being limited to the fact that they are a planet away.

There is a rush to expedite a space-based combat fleet, despite not knowing the aliens’ intentions, because as Admiral Kelly states, “I would rather meet them with force and be wrong than meet them in peace and be wrong.” The enormity of the task dawns on everyone as does the financial implications of having such a fleet (The expected cost is a eye-watering $34 Trillion USD).

The book had smart exchanges between the characters. There are multiple players in the book, as there should be, but the author makes each of their personalities and voices distinct. There were a lot of technical terms (The researcher in me was itching to read up on them more), but it doesn’t feel gratuitous.

Black Ships is an engaging story and feels realistic. The story is unique as it is set only a few years from now and not a futuristic take on it.

I hope that you choose this book as your next read. Black Ships certainly gives us a lot to think about.

Thank you for reading today’s blog post. I was happy to review so many good Indie books for Indie April, and I hope to do it again next year. I will go back to my regular posts, including writing updates.

I wish you a great day, and hope that you discover something new today.

This blog post can also be found as a podcast at anchor.fm/aisha-urooj

Indie Short story review: As Black Roses Bleed by Morgan Wright

For today’s Indie April pick, I will talk about the dark fantasy short story, As Black Roses Bleed, by Morgan Wright.

If darkness be hidden,

And thorns persist,

Let peace live on…

But if thorns be slit,

And eyes reopen,

Let death befall.

It is tricky to review a short story without giving away the story or giving spoilers (I think this is my first one), so I will try my best 😁

As Black Roses Bleed is about a witch, a curse on a village, and a boy at the centre of it. Theirs is a grim world, where hope and happiness is but a fool’s dream.

Reading this story is like opening Pandora’s box and being caught in the chaos. It is like screaming without making a sound. It feels like a prelude to an epic dark fantasy novel, rather than just a short story.

There is enough intrigue and mystery to stay with you long after you read the final sentence. As Black Roses Bleed lingers on in your mind like a nightmare you can’t escape when you close your eyes.

I hope that you give this short story a read. It is great writing by a fantastic writer.

You can read the short story for yourself here: https://commontonguezitne.com/article/as-black-roses-bleed/…

I have one more book remaining for Indie April. I hope that you choose an Indie book for your next read.

I hope that you have a great day 😊 Thank you for reading today’s blog post.

This blog can be found as a podcast at anchor.fm/aisha-urooj

Indie book review: Demonheart by J.J. Egosi

My fourth book for Indie April is the dark fantasy Demonheart (Raging Elementals, #1) by J.J. Egosi.

The book has an action-packed start, involving orcs, a gold coin, and a dragon… even if it was only dreamt up by our protagonist. The main character Michael is an oddity. He is a light bringer in the dark realm. His white hair and blue eyes makes him stick out in the sea of dark hair and eyes of the people of his village.

Michael’s adoptive parents treat him worse than a servant, despite being the richest family around (and having oodles of gold 👑💸). They favor his younger stepsister, Isabella, who will be the heir of the Asmodai estate and billion-gold empire. Michael tolerates the verbal and physical abuse, until one day, he is thrown out unceremoniously by Isabella from the place he called home for most of his life.

Michael is perplexed. Why did his sister throw him out now? Why did she look sad about it? What dark secret is she hiding? Michael sets out to investigate this mystery, and so his journey begins in Demonheart.

Here is the description of the book:

In dark medieval times, a young man serves under the family of the wealthiest jewelry estate in all the land. He believed he’d be nothing more than an instrument of ridicule for all those that crossed his path. Until a violent tragedy exiles him from the only home he knew. Now, he must explore the world on his own in search of a new purpose. Where he meets an assassin in search of the world’s rarest creature: Elementals. Soon, he encounters a witch from another place; existing from a time long ago. Who tells him of a secret to his past he had to experience to truly believe. Now, he must search all corners of the world for something he never knew he had. During a life he never knew he lived. Before the demon king puts an end to all things he finally came to fight for.

This is a dark novel which gets more intense as you read it. There is violence and swearing… and lots of bodies 😱 Michael goes from one dangerous situation to another, so the story remains fast-paced. There are many unexpected twists and turns, such as Michael taking on the job of an assassin by accident.… until he is caught in his lie 😆

Demonheart is an interesting story that will keep you riveted on what happens next. I hope that you give this book a chance. Remember to choose an Indie book for Indie April. I am sure that the authors will appreciate your support.

Thank you for reading today’s blog post. I hope that you have a great day 😊

This blog can be found as a podcast at anchor.fm/aisha-urooj

Indie book review: The Vampire Wants a Wife

Dating can be hard… maybe even harder when you are a hot vampire.

Theodore is 126-years-old and has had a thousand girlfriends during his life, but unfortunately, none of them have been a good match. He just wants a wife to spend his eternal life with. What can a poor vampire do?

Theodore takes the next logical step… he fills out a dating application and sends it to a dating agency. He feels that his luck will finally turn around. That is unless he scares away Shelley, the human who runs the dating agency.

Come to think of it, Theodore finds Shelley ravishing… even if she is a bit crazy to throw garlic naan at him (to check if he was really a vampire). Theo finds out that she is single too.

Hmmm… 😏

For my third Indie book for Indie April (see previous blogs for more info), I chose the romantic comedy, The Vampire wants a Wife (Supernatural Dating Agency Book 1) by Andie M. Long.

This book is steamy even if it has a cute cover. There is swearing and mature content and situations (Oh my!). This book wasn’t for me but the book had a fun concept and endearing main characters.

This is a vampire story with modern twists which gives the old concept a new feeling. Theodore loves sharing pictures on Instagram, for instance, and even uses Facetime to chat with Shelley.

Theodore also frowns at the idea of sparkling vampires 🤭🌟🧛‍♂️🌟 There is also a role reversal as Theodore is the one with the ticking biological clock ⏰ and who wants to be a father soon.

Shelley’s and Theodore’s path to one true love is paved with intrigue and danger. There are strange accidents occuring around them, branches falling out of trees, and friends seeing ominous visions, and Shelley having nightmares. Someone or something in their hometown of Withernsea do not want them dating one another. But why?

Will they have a happy ending or will one of them get hurt or killed? Why is Lucy Fir (head of Hell) after Shelley? How can they escape the evil forces?

I hope that you choose an Indie book for Indie April. I will bring you more book review posts during this month.

I will try to squeeze in two more books for Indie April. I am trying to include as many genres as possible so there will be a scifi book and a epic fantasy/dark fantasy book review coming soon.

Thank you for reading!

This blog can be found as a podcast at anchor.fm/aisha-urooj

Indie Book Review: Mark of a Demon

For my second Indie book, I chose the paranormal romance short story, Mark of a Demon by Despoina Kemeridou.

What is Mark of a Demon about?

When Heather was born, everyone thought she would die due to her weak heart. Upon her mother’s callings, a demon showed up and saved her life by sharing his heart with hers. There was only one condition; she would live until the demon’s powers ran out. Not knowing anything about the mark she had on her chest from the day she remembers herself, she falls in love with the demon, marking the start of a forbidden love…

What happens when she finds out the secrets her aunt and the demon have been keeping deeply hidden from her?

There is a lot of story and heart in the pages of this novella. The story was fast-paced but I wished it had explored the love story of Nube and Heather a bit more. Their love story seemed a bit sudden. I was touched by the scene where Heather meets her mother again. Portrayal of family relationships, especially the one with Heather and her aunt, Sara, gives Mark of a Demon warmth, depth, and realism.

I hope that you consider Mark of a Demon for your next read. I will be back with a review of another Indie book for Indie April in my next blog post. Until then, stay safe! I wish you a great day.

Thank you for reading 😊

This blog can be found as a podcast at anchor.fm/aisha-urooj

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