Monday, August 15, 2016

Release Day!

On the surface, it's an ordinary day. I got up, harvested squash and tomatoes in the garden, had a GF bagel for breakfast, and played with Mateo.

But I also posted the link to my first published book.

Yes, folks, today is the day. After 22 years of storytelling, and 4 years perfecting this particular tale, I have finally released a NOVEL.

It is still surreal to me.

There's a very real link for Amazon, though, where you can purchase either the paperback ($13.99) or Kindle ($2.99) version. (Actually, if you buy the paperback, you get the Kindle version free! Or you can read it on Amazon Unlimited, if you're a subscriber).

(Some people have asked if I'll be selling autographed copies. Right now, with my health issues, it is much easier for me to leave the selling up to Amazon, especially because each book sold there raises my ranking and visibility. However I am working on creating bookplates that I can personalize and send to interested readers.)

You can also win a copy of the Kindle Version by entering my giveaway here! (I have another giveaway planned for next week, after people have started actually reading the book, so check back!)

You know what else is surreal? Reading the first official reviews of the book! I sent out several Advanced Reader Copies and reviews will be popping up over the next week or two. The very first ones have already been released, and I am just thrilled with them! My favorite quotes are below, but I highly recommend checking out the full (spoiler FREE) reviews!

I inhaled page after page of this book. The setting, characters, and plot all wound together to create a fun, imaginative experience. I particularly loved the way in which Catholicism danced throughout the pages of this story. Hajek is not Catholic, but she nailed the Catholic atmosphere in this story. From intimate details of devotions to unique struggles that the characters had, the story breathed Catholicism realistically. It is apparent that Hajek took much time and effort to weave this faith tradition throughout the story tastefully, and I hope that Catholics and non-Catholics alike will enjoy exploring the traditions, conversations, and struggles of the charactersAnneMarie, Sacrifice of Love
I found myself often being reminded of Narnia (even though the story never leaves the real realm of Paris), because the story reminded me that Beauty lives and breathes in ways that I might not even imagine and reawakens wonder at each turn. Carissa, A Myth Retold
 I was surprised to find a very personal, mature story about coming of age. Daphne goes through a fantastic character arc, not just moving from naivete to experience. She also grows as a person, gaining self-awareness, determination, and a larger view of the world. This provides a fantastic companion to the adventurous parts of the book–and this book is most certainly an adventure. Andy, The Catholic Geeks

Also, last week I wrote up a guest post for Rivershore Books about my experience with self-publishing. If you're interested in a behind-the-scenes look at how it all came together, check it out!

(Other behind-the-scenes posts, including FAQ's and how I came to write a Catholic novel, can be found here.)

One issue that I've realized I never addressed is a recommended reading age. The heroine of the book is a nineteen-year-old college student, but my intention as an author was to create a story that would appeal to a wide range of readers. The age of the heroine means that the book will probably be categorized as adult fiction, but content-wise there is nothing that most 13-year-olds shouldn't be able to handle.  There's a little violence, a little kissing, and a few very veiled references to more mature topics, but I think the book would be considered tame even by most YA standards. Indeed, I think the biggest issue for my Protestant readers will be discussing the Catholic elements with their pre-teens (and I am thinking of writing up a sort of study guide for this, as my hope is the book will serve as a bridge of understanding between these two sides of Christianity, as Regina Doman's Fairy Tale Novels did for me). I'm quite happy to answer any questions from parents determining whether to give this book to their pre-teen, please feel free to write me at ElizabethAHajek(at)Gmail(dot)com if interested.

I am so thrilled to finally be sharing my story with the world! If you enjoyed reading it, please consider sharing it on Facebook and writing a review on Amazon. Even a simple "loved it" with 4 or 5 stars is tremendously helpful for my Amazon ranking!

1 comment:

AnneMarie said...

Happy Book Release Day!! I can't even begin to imagine how exciting it is to see your novel go into the hands of others and hear what people have to say about it. Congratulations! And thanks for mentioning the reading age-it's funny you bring that up, because I meant to ask you that before I wrote my review, but then I completely forgot! I agree; 13 and up seems like a really good age range. I think it's cool that you're thinking of doing a study guide-I'm sure you'd provide some really good perspectives on what may be confusing aspects of the story to Protestant readers.