REVIEW: Put A Ring on It by K.A. Mitchell

I received this book for free in exchange for a fair and honest review. My receiving this book in no way affects my opinion.

PutARingOnItLGTITLE: Put A Ring on It

AUTHOR: K.A. Mitchell

GENRE: Contemporary Romance

TAG LINE: “Now everyone wants in on the wedding, except the grooms…”

 

RATING: 1 Stars

SUMMARY:  Kieran Delaney-Schwartz—adoptee, underachiever, and self-professed slacker IT guy—lives his under-the-radar life by the motto: Don’t try, don’t fail. His adopted siblings are all overachievers thanks to his driven, liberal parents, but Kieran has elected to avoid disappointing anyone by not getting their hopes up. He’s coasting through his early twenties when he’s hit head-on by Theo. The successful decade-older Broadway producer sweeps him off his feet for a whirlwind thirteen months that are pretty sweet until it all comes screeching to a halt on Valentine’s Day, with an unexpected proposal via a NYC Times Square Flash mob.
BUY LINKS: Dreamspinner | Amazon

 

REVIEW:

 

I’m going to tell you right now that this book got shelved on the DNFR (Did Not Finish Reading) shelf. I grew so frustrated and angry with this book that I finally threw it down (figuratively) and gave up. I did skip to the end to see what happened and wasn’t happy with the resolve, so I stand by my decision with not finishing the book.

I’ve read K.A. Mitchell’s work before and enjoyed it, so I’m a fan of her work. But this book I just could not enjoy. I made it about 80 pages in (a little under halfway?) before I threw in the towel. Now I don’t want to say that my decision to quit reading was because of the quality of the writing.  K.A. Mitchell is a talented author, and as I stated before, I’ve enjoyed previous stories by her, but this particular one just chaffed me the wrong way. On a technical level the story was great. It wasn’t the quality of the writing, but the characterization and the actual plot of the story I didn’t enjoy.

This story had a lot going for it: pre-marital drama, which is always fun, and a nice little age gap between the two characters, a personal kink for me. I was completely psyched to read this. But things got really confusing from the get-go. The first thing we’re introduced to is a scene years before the actual story about Theo interacting with a group of college friends (characters who will appear throughout the series). This threw me off, because it felt really out of place. I understand the author was trying to set us up for the series, and while Theo’s friends play a crucial role to the plot, it felt out of place. It was meant to build Theo’s friendship with his college buddies, but all it did was feel like an unnecessary prologue. The information we gleaned from the first chapter could have easily been integrated into the story.

The second chapter we get to meet Kiernan and see him interact with Theo. This gets into the heart of the story. I immediately didn’t feel any chemistry between them. Kiernan didn’t seem as interested in his relationship with Theo as Theo was. It was obvious Theo adored Kiernan, but Kiernan felt aloof towards his emotions with Theo. This is an ongoing problem throughout the story. Kiernan’s lack of feelings towards Theo, despite the author’s attempt to show that Kiernan does indeed love Theo, made it hard to really root for them. I honestly wanted Theo to kick Kiernan to the curb and go find someone else.

Now I want it to be noted that I don’t agree with how Theo proposed to Kiernan (spoilers ahead). It was stupid of him to make a public display of a very intimate proposal towards someone who has social anxiety, so shame on Theo for that. But Kiernan also failed to explain his feelings properly and only made a bad situation worse.

There was way too much drama in the story. I was frustrated from the beginning. It was like the author took several ideas and then threw them all together, unable to decide which route to go. Where I left off as where Kiernan was agreeing to have one of Theo’s meddling friends help him break off his relationship. It was a childish choice and neither party seemed to have Theo’s best intentions in mind.

Books aren’t meant to stress you out and this book did just that. Because I couldn’t finish it, had no investment in the characters, and felt no chemistry between the main couple, I’m giving this book 1 star.

Advertisements

So You’re Thinking of Trying Out an Indie Press

So you don’t want to self-publish. Okay that’s fine. Self-publishing isn’t for everyone and it does require a lot of work. What other options are there than self-publishing and traditional publishing? Well, there’s going through an indie press.

More people are turning to indie presses each day. The beauty of the indie press is that it offers you a niche market to work with while providing you benefits of traditional publishing, but still giving you freedoms that you otherwise would lose if you signed a book deal with a larger publishing house. And a bonus is that most indie presses don’t require an agent to submit to them.

Some people turn their noses to the idea of going through an indie press—anyone can submit, after all. But that’s the great thing about it. Indie presses open doors for people that would otherwise be forced to tuck their manuscripts on the top shelf and let them gain dust. It’s through indie presses that the LGBT market has exploded. Companies like Loose Id and Dreamspinner (the number one LGBT publishing house right now) offer opportunities for writers to get their stories heard. And more companies are joining the game. Recently, publishing house Ninestar Press opened, offering both romance (of any heat level) and literary LGBT works. Then there are presses that cater towards other genres, such as horror, Christian fiction, sci-fi/fantasy, and erotica.

Indie presses give you an opportunity to build a brand for yourself and increase your chance at selling to someone who is actually interested in your kind of book. And unlike self-publishing, you‘ll work with an editor and cover artist to polish your book off and get it ready for the market.

Now I don’t want you to think that it’s all gold stars from here. You still have to put in effort (but let’s face it, in this day in age, you have to do that anyway you publish). Not all publishing houses in the indie-world offer first rate marketing plans. Some of the leg work will fall on you and your wallet. Ninepress does offer a marketing plan, but Loose Id doesn’t advertise beyond the first announcement.  Your sales can vary depending on how strong you get the word out—because that’s what it’s going to be based on, who knows your book is there. Your story won’t be in all the bookstores, it’ll most likely be sold exclusively online (if the company does imprints, like Samhain, you may occasionally see your book at a store), so for the most case, people aren’t going to know it exists unless you tell them. You’re still going to have to take that extra mile to keep your sales up.

Don’t let this discourage you though. Indie publishing is a great chance to get your name out there and build a following. There are plenty of authors who have established successful careers for themselves. Try looking at some of the indie presses out there, see if there’s one that fits your niche. Maybe all those agents keep telling you there isn’t room for another zombie novel, but you really don’t want to self-publish. Check out Samhain Publishing’s horror imprint. I’m sure they’ll be very interested to hear about the living dead.