Sunday, March 13, 2011

Sunday eBook Review

Nathan Lowell, Quarter Share


Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 523 KB
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0982514549
  • Publisher: Ridan Publishing (May 2, 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003KGBH3K
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  (138 reviews)

1. Short review:  

2. Long review:
2.1. What I liked:  Quarter Share was light and easy to read.  When a book is easy to read, much effort has gone into making it so.

2.2. What I did not like:  Typos, typesetting errors, and one odd word choice.  Examples:  In the first chapter, 'later' was written where 'latter' was intended; there is one instance where closing quotes were given but the same speaker continued in the following paragraph; the one odd word choice was 'acclimating', used where 'becoming accustomed' would have been better.  I mention it because it kicked me out of my reading mind-set.  'Acclimate' to me relates to weather and climate, not to shipboard routine; 'accustom' or 'habituate' is better for that.
     If you play the pro game, play at the pro level.  Were Mr Lowell an indie author, I might be inclined to give him slack.  (Probably not.)  But Mr Lowell published through Ridan Publishing, a small press.  Ridan Publishing had the job of editing and proofreading Quarter Share.  They dropped the ball.

2.3. Who I think is the audience:  I and others like me.  I am an avid blue-water sailor--sailboats, not powerboats.  I read science fiction.  I have read Two Years Before the Mast, Moby-Dick, and the entire Horatio Hornblower series.  When I was young, I read the whole of the Tom Swift and Tom Swift, Jr, series.  So did I get the audience right?  Lessee . . .
     Call me Ishmael.  Yeah I know, but in this case it's really my name:  Ishmael Horatio Wang.  My parents had an unfortunate sense of humor.  If they had known what I'd wind up doing with my life, they might have picked a different one--Richard Henry Dana, perhaps.
     So the book begins.  What do you think?  Did I get the audience right?

2.4. Is the book appropriate for children to read?  Yes.  No worries.  No profanity; one 'darn'.  No sex.  Some left-handed hints at nudity but nothing overt.

2.5. On the basis of reading this book, will I buy the author's next book?  Yes.  Looking forward to Half Share.

2.6. Other:  I sampled Quarter Share first by podcast here  I learned two things:  1) I don't like having books read to me, and 2) I liked as much of Quarter Share as I heard. 
     To me, there are two downsides to the Solar Clipper series. 
     The first is the name of the series:  Solar Clipper.  From that name, I expected tales of lightsailships cruising our solar system.  'Taint so.  As mellow as Solar Clipper sounds, I think Stellar Clipper would have been better. 
     The second--and this is big--is the production schedule.  As of today, only Quarter Share and Half Share are available on Kindle.  I want 'em all, and I want 'em now.
     One last item.  Ishmael refers to the space between the stars as the 'Deep Dark'.  I like that.  It is an evocative image.

2.7.  Links:
Nathan Lowell @
Trader's Diary @

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