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Top 10 Resources
January, 2008

Easy Way To Write

Top 10 IN Resources: Book Review Sites
Summertime and the readin' is easy
By  Sarah E. White

Summertime and the reading is easy.

Something about this time of year just makes me want to break into song. Since I live in the southern U.S., something about this time of year also makes me want to never leave the house again. It's a great time for reading, since that's an activity you can do indoors while eating ice cream.

But where should you go to find out what to read? Here are the top 10 resources for book reviews, in no particular order.

Book Reporter
Much of this site is devoted to genre fiction, particularly mystery, suspense, thrillers and chick lit. But the site also features mainstream fiction reviews, as well as interviews with authors, reading group guides for book clubs, contests, polls and more. Also covers audio books and books made into movies.

Mystery Guide
For lovers of all things mysterious, this site offers reviews, interviews and games (like "name that author"). New reviews are separated from older ones, and you can search by genre (who knew there were 17 genres of mystery?) and leave a request for a review if you can't find what you're looking for.

Guardian Books
For book news and reviews with a British twist, the Guardian's book pages can't be beat. The "first look" contest allows regular readers to get advance copies of books and share their thoughts. There are sections for children, author interviews, fun top ten lists (fairytales, books on the sea, Welshmen) and, of course, reviews.

The SF Site
The sire for news, reviews, interviews and more from the world of science fiction and fantasy. Read excerpts, speak out in the forums and check out reviews of nonfiction, series, first novels and television shows and movies on DVD. There are even a few reviews of audio books and looks at that classics.

Midwest Book Review
A great site for people looking for good books, as well as for people looking to write reviews (though it's an unpaid market). Midwest Book Review actually offers several "publications," for children's books, general fiction and nonfiction, small press or POD books, and a reviewer's choice list. There's good information for writers here, too.

I love the concept of this site, which proclaims itself as "for ravenous readers." Perhaps the coolest feature of this site is the book lists for books that have received starred reviews (the symbol for the best-of-the-best books in Booklist, Publishers Weekly, Kirkus and Library Journal) but there are lots of other great lists on this simple site, too.

Book Page
In the interest of full disclosure, in the past I have written for Book Page. It's still a great site :). Providing more than 50 positive reviews a month, about books from general fiction to cookbooks to mysteries to children's books, this site is a good one-stop shop for whatever you like to read.

ForeWord Magazine
The magazine (and web site) for reviews of good books independently published, I love this publication because it shines a light on books that often don't get a lot of attention. There are a lot of great books out there that happen to be published by small presses, and this site will help you find them.

Quill & Quire
For Canadian book news and reviews, look no further than Quill & Quire. The online home of the magazine of the same name offers all the contents of the print edition with reviews, events, notices and links to other publications' weblogs. It also includes reviews of books for young people.

USA Book News
While not a huge site, USA Book News offers solid reviews in categories ranging from fiction to spirituality, picture books to business. The site also offers a monthly ezine featuring reviews, interviews, contests and more (much of which does not appear on the web site).

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Sarah E. White offers Writing, Editing and Creative Services at News and reviews from independent publishing: and is author of Doing the Write Thing: The Easy Way to Self-Edit

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Top 10 Resources
IN This Issue
Top 10: On Hiatus
Top 10: Knock, Knock
Top 10: Perspective
Top 10: History
Top 10: Writer's Slump
Top 10: Moth Mentality
Top 10: Outlandish
Top 10: Illusion
Top 10: Appreciation
Top 10 : Fear

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Bald Ego
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Writer’s Block
The path to inspiration starts
Upon the trails we’ve known;
Each writer’s block is not a rock,
But just a stepping stone.

Poetry Is Not
Penned to the page
Waiting for us to admire.
It is only a lonely thought
Caught by tears on fire.

Silent Echoes
A quiet rhyme upon a page
Is what a poet gives;
Some gentle words whispered in trust
To see if memory lives.

Bard From Deadlines
What makes a poem finally work
Is not the time it takes;
It’s how the poet used the muse
To prophet from mistakes.

Be Mused
The art and craft of poetry
Are not so far apart;
The craft comes from the cunning,
The rest comes from the heart.

Fine Vintage
Don’t plant your poem on the page
As though you’re hanging drapes;
It’s shape and flow should come and grow
Like wild summer grapes.

Getting It Write
Writers write what they know best,
Their passions, fears, and dreams;
Writers rarely write about
What other call their “themes.”

Double Vision
A writer’s life is paradox,
It’s more than what it seems;
We write of our reality,
The one inside our dreams.

The echo of a promise,
The thunder of a sigh,
The music of a memory,
A child asking why.

Letter Perfect
Twenty six symbols arranged on a page
Can send a soul to heaven or torment it with rage,
Can free a fragile world or hold it in its net--
The power and the magic of the mighty alphabet.

The Write of Passage
The jump from writing just for fun
To getting paid for it
Begins when you first realize
You know you’ll never quit.

It is not the magic of his wings
That sets us free from our bond.
It is the muse within ourselves
That lets our words lift us beyond.

Photo Poet
Consider your mind the darkroom,
Consider your life the lens,
Consider your eye the camera
On whose focus the poem depends.

Rising Moon
A poem is a rising moon
Shining on the sea,
An afterglow of all we know,
Of all we hope to be.

Star Light
Writing a poem,
Reaching a star,
In making good art
We find who we are.

Spider Web
A poem is a spider web
Spun with words of wonder,
Woven lace held in place
By whispers made of thunder.

The final draft upon the screen,
At last my poem’s through;
A verse of only four short lines--
I rewrote twenty-two!

Read All Of Charles Ghigna's Poetry at

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