As some of you may know, my pirates won SPFBO 3. Where Loyalties Lie scored an impressive 8.1 overall and just barely poked its scurvacious nose over the finish line first. This bares no real relation to the rest of the post, I just wanted to remind myself that I won… and use the word scurvacious.

SPFBO (that’s the Self Published Fantasy Blog Off) is back on for a fourth year and another 300 books have signed up to take a healthy dose of judging to the face. But I won’t be participating this year as I unfortunately don’t have any eligible books. It’s been a year of sequels and sci fi for me. But I still wanted to shove my support behind the blog off and take part in some way. Luckily, Petros of the family BookNest has invited me over to be a slush pile judge. So from contestant to winner (had to get it in at least once more) to judge/reviewer.

What this means is that I will be reading 5 of BookNest’s initial 30, and then choosing one of those 5 to put forward as a semi-finalist. At that point, Petros will read all 5 semi-finalists and choose BookNest’s ultimate finalist. It’s quite exciting, and far less nerve-wracking, being on this side of the contest.

I’ll be getting started on my 5 reads soon, but no reviews will be posted until August when the blog off officially kicks off. I have been asked to read and review, but not rate… which contestants will probably be quite pleased about because I’m fairly brutal with my 5 star rating system. 😀

So, I have been sent my 5 books to read and review (and JUDGE!) and they are as follows. You can click on each book cover to learn more.


Looks like I have quite a variety to go at. Hopefully I find a couple of sparkling gems in them.


Oh, and just in case you haven’t heard yet. I won the third SPFBO with my pirates!