Profile: Brian Braden

Reviews and Articles | Review of REBEL VAMPIRES VOLUME 2: BLOOD SHACKLES by Rosemary A Johns | Review of THE ENEMY WITHIN by Scott Burns | Beware of Know-It-Alls: Writing Advice and What It’s Worth | Review of THE FORGOTTEN: ATEN’S LAST QUEEN by J. Lynn Else | Review of THE END by Justine Avery | Review of THE LATINA PRESIDENT by Joe Rothstein | SHELFIES: Joanne Merriam of Upper Rubber Boot | Authors Assemble! The Pros and Cons of Joining Forces | Review of MAGICAL EYES by Jessica DAgostini | Interview With Ginger Bensman | 4.5 Star Review of TO SWIM BENEATH THE EARTH by Ginger Bensman | 3.5 Stars – Review of THE CHILDREN OF DARKNESS (The Seekers Book 1) by David Litwack | Come Closer, Snowflakes | What is a Pitch Perfect Pick? | Review of HARVEST OF EVIL by William Lehman | Review of 100 BY 100 by ML Kennedy | Is 30 the New 60? | SHELFIES: Siri Paulson of Turtleduck Press | Review of THE TREASON GAME by Viv Doyle | Review of IMOGENE IN NEW ORLEANS by Hunter Murphy | Review of Public Information by Rolf Margenau | Basic Book Promotion on an Indie Budget | Review of THE SIX TRAIN TO WISCONSIN by Kourtney Heintz | Talent Vs Hard Work | Review of STANLEY MCCLOUD MUST DIE! by Adrian Baldwin | Review of THE DEAD HAVE SECRETS by Owen Parr | The Price of Free | Review of BLOQ by Alan Jones | SHELFIES: Thurston Howl of Thurston Howl Publications | Review of Star Winds at Dusk by Robert DeFrank | Review of “The Year of Uh” by Jud Widing | Review of THE EMPRESS OF VENTRA by Melissa E. Beckwith | Review of HIDDEN DAWN by Elke Silvarain | How to Kick-start Your Next Novel | 2017 Novel of the Year Results | Review of Tell Me a Story by Tamara Lush | Review of 1,803 THINGS by Randy Horton | Review of “How NOT To Be An American High School GIrl in the 70s” by Gail Spencer Choate | The Seven Vital Virtues of Indie Author Success | Review of MARKET STREET CINEMA by Michele Machado | Review of BONDS OF BLOOD & SPIRIT: UNCIVIL WARS | Feeling a Little Empty? | Review of Beyond the Horizon (Beyond Saga Book 2) by Greg Spry | Review of NOT EVERY GIRL by Jane McGarry | SHELFIES: Weasel of Weasel Press and Red Ferret Press | Can Fiction Teach Us Empathy? 10 Books that Changed Us for the Better | Review of Kill’t Dead or Worse by Richard Hacker | Shyness and The Indie Author | The War On Descriptive Writing | Underground Author Blogs with Talpa the Bookmole | Meet UBR Co-Founder Brian L. Braden. | Review of HEALING RUBY by Jennifer H. Westall | Review of THE FOOL’S TRUTH by Loretta H. Marion | Challenging Fiction by Renee Miller | Review of Dominion of the Star by Angelica Clyman | Review of Blood Dragons by Rosemary A. Johns | Interview with Rosemary Johns | A Few Moments with Talpa the Book Mole. | Review of GROWTH AND CHANGE ARE HIGHLY OVERRATED by Tom Starita | Review of TEETH by Chele Cooke | Don’t Forget to Vote for Novel of the Year! | And Now A Word from UBR’s Official Spokesmodel. | Review of KILL SOMEONE by Luke Smitherd | SHELFIES: Brian Kaufman of Dark Silo Press | TOP PICK! Review of STIM by Kevin Berry | The Rise of the Word Police | Practice What You Speak: 7 Tips for Dynamic Dialogue | TOP PICK! GARY’S GUIDE TO LIFE by Michael Nabavian and Phil Wall | 4 Stars – A SECONDHAND LIFE by Pamela Crane | Vote for the 2017 Novel of the Year – Reader’s Choice | 5 Stars! – THE RECITAL by Kyle V. Hiller | A Message to the Writer, to be Opened January 1st. | How to Write Like a Guy When You’re Not | 3 Stars – Prenitia: The Fate of Vultures by Jessica O’Toole | TOP PICK! The Last Great American Magic by L.C. Fiore | 4 Stars – The Wanderer Awakens by Ken Lange | Long or Short: All Sizes Matter | Does Your Book Qualify for Assigned Reviews? | Review of By Summer’s Last Twilight by Robert J. Stava | Review of The Tenants of 7C by Alice Degan | Interview with Kyle V. Hiller | TOP PICK! Review of Johnny and Jamaal by K. M. Breakey | Are you a REAL writer? | Interview with Deb Dorchak and Wendi Kelly | Review of LOYALTIES by Deb Dorchak | Keeping Your Momentum During NaNoWriMo | Review of THE PASSING OF TULEE MAIN by Peter S. Kelley – 4.5 Stars | Review of THE LOST DREAMSTONE by Gary Val Tenuta – 4 Stars | Review of SOUL RETRIEVERS by David Burton – 4 Stars | Review of AGONY OF BEING ME by Victoria Valentine – 4 Stars | Interview with Victoria Valentine | Rule Breakers: Writing Rules You Should Break & A Few You Shouldn’t | Review of Lady Ruth Bromfield by Gordon Smith | So You Want Me to Review Your Book | Review of The Gathering Darkness by Lisa Collicutt | Review of THE IMPROBABLE RISE OF PACO JONES by Dominic Carrillo – 4.5 Stars | Interview with Dominic Carrillo | Ask Me About My Genre Agenda | Are You a Bookmole? | Review of NO DOGS OR INDIANS by Lisa Hare | Review of IN PASSING by JR Wirth | Sure, You CAN Publish a Great Book, but SHOULD You? | Top Pick! Review of The Last Second Chance by Jim Nesbitt | Style and Voice Part 2: Finding Your Voice | Review OF THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF DASHING PRINCE DIETRICH Igor Ljubuncic | Interview with Igor Ljubuncic: Author of THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF DASHING PRINCE DIETRICH | Style and Voice Part 1: What’s Your Writing Style? | Review of A BOOK OF REVELATIONS by A. C. Burch | Join us at The NCWN Writer’s Conference | 4 Ways a Road Map Can Propel Your Novel Forward | Review of Falling in Death and Love by Magnus Stanke | Review of You Are My Song by Susan Moore Jordan | Review of HALF: THE MAKERS by Natalie Wright | Review of PROTECTOR by Elaine Gonzales | They Will Judge Your Book by Its Cover | Five Years of Underground Book Reviews | UBR Flashback – Review of MAGEBORN: THE BLACKSMITH’S SON by Michael Manning | Review of The Song Journey by T.E. Scott | Review of Delivering Virtue by Brian Kindall | Grammar Police: Step Away from the Keyboard | 5 Tips for Creating Masterful Plot | Review of The New Lease by John Stryder | Branding: Hugh Howey, Pokemon Go and Weeding the Garden | Facebook Virtual Launch Parties: Being the Best Host Ever | Review of GANGSTERS OF SHANGHAI by Gerry O’Sullivan | Want to Be Prolific? A How-To On Writing ALL THE WORDS | Review of THE RISE OF NAZIL by Aaron-Michael Hall | But What Do You Know? | Review of WHISKEY DEVILS by Brandon Zenner | Review of RIPPLES THROUGH TIME by Lincoln Cole | 6 Ways to Widen Your Audience | Review of RED LINE: THE SHIFT by J. T. Bishop | Review of QUEST FOR THE HOLY SNAIL by Rob Johnson | Diversity: Opportunity, not Obligation | Review of THE BLUE HOUR by Vicki Righettini | Underground Title Debut: THE GOLDEN PRINCESS | Pull Out or Stay Put: Panic is a Terrible Business Partner | Gearing up for the 2017 Novel of the Year | Review of EPIPHANY MAN by D. B. Patterson | Underground Title Debut: THE BARRIERS by Katie French | Space Werewolves of the Planet Sex (A Message Fiction) | Review of LIGHT RUNNER by Philip Brown | Interview With Philip Brown, Author of LIGHT RUNNER | Underground Title Debut: Release of THE UN-FAMILIAR: A Tale of Cats and Gods | 7 Self-Promotion Ideas for New Authors | Review of Dark Sky by Joel Canfield | Negative Reviews Are Good For You | Review of Blood Moon by Angela Roquet | Guilt: The Most Useless Emotion of All | Review of The Tree of Mindala by Elle Jacklee | Write Like Nobody’s Reading | 4 Steps You Can’t Skip When Submitting Your Manuscript | Review of Adam Parker and the Radioactive Scout by Michael Field | Interview With Robert Cowan | Underground Announcement: Release of CHASING CHAOS by Katie Rose Guest Pryal | Introducing Our Community Forum – Participate and Win Prizes! | TOP PICK! Review of A Necessary Act by Tony Wirt | Interview with Tony Wirt | Review of Use Somebody by Riley Jean | Do you Audio? | Review of In Vitro Lottery by Ed Ryder | You Hate Social Media? Really… | Review of Captivated By The Winter King by Mistral Dawn | A Thank You Letter to Our Invaluable Readers (and prizes!) | Sometimes It’s Okay to Fluff | REVERIE Wins Our First Popular By Vote Badge! | Review of With Strings Attached by Frank Haggerty | Interview with Frank Haggerty | False Gods | Review of EZEMBE by Jeffrey L Morris | 7 Steps To An Effective Writing Group | Review of Daydreams and Devils by Robert Cowan | Release of Raking the Dust by Top Pick Author John Biscello | Great Writer Advice (That You Haven’t Heard Yet) | Review of Angel of Song by Anne Rouen | Underground Title Debut! The Illusion Exotic by Brian L. Braden | The Forgettables: Secondary and Incidental Characters | Review of My Life as a Sperm by William Darrah Whitaker | Interview With William Darrah Whitaker | The Dark Side of Publishing: Bullies | Review of A Danger to God Himself by John Draper | Farewell from Pryal Style | Review of Lurk by Adam Vine | Future Stress (And How To Deal with It) | Review of Dream Killer by Mike Baldwin | What’s a Girl Gotta Do For a Review? | Review of Chasing Shadows by K. N. Salustro | Haters Gonna Hate | Websites for Writers Part 2: Design and Blogging Ideas | Review of Second Chances by Lincoln Cole | Launch Your Writing Career Like James Bond | Review of The Color of Character by Glen Shuld | The Difference Between Writing for Free and Being a Chump | Review of The Sixteen Burdens by David Khalaf | Interview with David Khalaf | The Myth of the Crazy Writer | Meet UBR Co-Founder Brian L. Braden at Amelia Island Book Fest. | Review of Codename Cupcake by Jillian Green DiGiacomo | Gender Wars: Do Men and Women Write Differently? | Review of Stone and a Hard Place by R L King | Three is a Magic Number: Using UBR to Find More Readers. | Nothing Left to Write? | OLGA Wins 2016 Novel of the Year | Review of Germination by Jamie Thornton | The Road to Top Pick Novel: Pitch Perfect Pick | Underground Announcement: CHASING CHAOS by Katie Rose Guest Pryal | Muddling Through a Media Kit | The Writer’s Mistress | Review of Give Me Your Answer True by Suanne Laqueur – TOP PICK! | Comedy Writing: Not as Easy as It Looks | Review of Broken by Traci L. Slatton | To Free or Not to Free | Welcome to the New Underground Book Reviews | Review of Ligatures by Sara Rich | Interview with Sara Rich | Websites for Writers Part 1: Should You Have Multiple Websites? | Vote for the 2016 Novel of the Year! | Review of Swan Deception by Gledé Browne Kabongo | The Road to Top Pick Novel: Get Certified! | Review of The Devil’s Flower by Lisa Collicutt | Review of Alaana’s Way: The Calling by Ken Altabef | Interview with Traci L. Slatton by Yvonne Lieblein | Review of Fallen by Traci L. Slatton | Interview with David Rawding | It’s Time We Got Serious | Writing What You Know, the Journalism and Blogging Edition | Review of Taking on Water by David Rawding | Review of Between Lions and Lambs by N.T. McQueen | So You Want to Quit… | Review of Jet-Exposed (Kindle Worlds Novella) by LYNDA FILLER | Review of Paladin by Sally Slater | The No-Fail Author Newsletter Formula | Review of Blue Sun, Yellow Sky by Jamie Jo Hoang | Review of People Like Us by Deng Zichao | Review of Eli’s Heart by Susan Moore Jordan | Sinking Ships: Political Correctness and Fiction | Interview With Robert Klose | Review of Long Live Grover Cleveland by Robert Klose | Schedule Yourself: Productivity Tips for Writers | Review of The Witches of Armour Hill by Alyssa Cooper | How To Commit Murder | Taking Risks | Hate It All You Want: Social Media Can Sell Books | Review of Olga by Ted Kelsey

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Endorsement for Broken Land

On page one of John Biscello’s Broken Land he writes: “Anyway, if I had an office and it had been a rainy Tuesday, then a tragic blonde with legs like scissors strong enough to cut a flesh-and-blood man in half might have walked in… but that’s not the way this story begins.” This remarkably well-written novel is brimming with offbeat poetry.

Salvatore, the narrator, begins the story by taking on the case of his missing writer-friend, Jimmy. Jimmy calls Sal to tell him that he’s dead, and the bizarre phone call inspires Sal to investigate. He claims he’s not quite an investigative journalist, or a private eye, but simply calls himself “curious.” And so the story follows this curious narrator though New York on an unusual journey to find his friend.

Among the novel’s colorful characters are the mysterious and gorgeous Anna, a drunken dwarf named Hen, the street-smart hustler Rico, and Claire from Ghostwriters, Inc. who literally calls on ghosts to inspire writers. These characters are wonderfully original and each has an impact on Sal as he searches for answers.

This is such a unique novel. On the surface, it’s a smart, entertaining and witty story. Underneath, it’s like a peek inside a writer’s mind, revealing the mystical art of storytelling. There are a few scenes that seem random along the way, but once everything comes together, the reader realizes that every page has its purpose. Biscello’s muse has not failed him.

Broken Land is easy to recommend. Any reader looking for something out of the ordinary would likely enjoy it. At 158 pages, this quick read never lets up on intrigue. It would also be an excellent novel for aspiring writers to read. First, they can learn about solid writing from Biscello’s example, but they can also find inspiration from his clever message.

Brian Braden is watching The Renegade Queen

Endorsement for Black Sea Gods

...It has a feel of the classics, tales where gods and goddesses are made human, and left to mingle with us lowly mortals, often as much for their own benefit as ours.

There is a strong Chinese influence here .... In terms of narrative, the different voices are as strong as they are unique, really adding a poetic flair to things that, again, hearkens back to the classics. Visually, it's a stunning read, with a significant amount of detail imbued in almost everything. It can be overwhelming at times, particularly in its most violent aspects, but in a way that makes you appreciate, rather than resent, the picture being painted.

Above all else, this is an epic fantasy that feels new . . . fresh . . . unique. It's not your typical swords and sorcery epic, but neither is it your traditional historical epic. I hesitate to make the comparison, as it's unfair to hold Braden to such lofty standards, but there's a taste of Guy Gavriel Kay here that promises a bright future.

Endorsement for Black Sea Gods

"A thought-provoking read, Black Sea Gods is a little bit hard to get into, but once you do the trouble to get to know the characters and get into the story, it is quite addictive....The storyteller weaves an intricate and involved story, carrying different story lines with ease. The descriptions and conversations are well handled, and there are several memorable quotes that really attribute to the skill of the author. "

Endorsement for Black Sea Gods

"This epic fantasy raises the bar for Historical Fantasy to new heights.

I usually know after reading the first paragraph whether or not I will like a book. With Black Sea Gods, I knew after the first sentence that the writing itself would be good. Well, I was wrong. It is GREAT!

Interestingly, there are two different story-lines: One follows the arduous journey of an intrepid people; the other, the Chronicles of Fu Xi, tells of the birth, death and re-birthing of the gods. The marvel is how the two are fused into an "Aha-moment."

...A resounding "Highly Recommended."

Endorsement for Barnacle Brat (a dark comedy for grown-ups)

This laugh-out-loud dark comedy for adults only wins our 2015 Popular Choice award through social media voting.

Endorsement for Olga

Selected as the Underground Book Reviews 2015 Novel of the Year." [A] novel that is so full of imagination and character that it was impossible to put down...OLGA by Ted Kelsey is a romp through a magical world that is slightly reminiscent of familiar fairytales, but entirely of its own. Don't miss Ted Kelsey's debut novel."

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Endorsement for Black Sea Gods

Brian Braden is watching Broken