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Old 06-27-2010, 04:46 PM   #1
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Rex Kusler - Two Novels (Free to 79¢)

Rex Kusler wrote four novels in the 1980s, left the profession, and fairly recently returned. There are some colourful webpages posted by and about him. He has two works currently available:

Angela - Free at Smashwords, Kobo; 99¢ at Amazon ($2.99 in Canada)
Johnny Buck has an attitude problem. Raised by a father with antisocial values, he struggles to overcome his bad choices. But he needs help. Especially with these women he's always meeting named Angela. There is also the mysterious and reclusive novelist Samantha Sommers he'd like to meet. She thinks that's a bad idea.
Tags: angel, ghost, humor, paranormal, romance, suspense

Punctured - 79¢ at Kobo, 99¢ at Smashwords, Amazon ($2.79 in Canada)
Investigating your brother-in-law's murder can put a strain on sibling relations--when all the evidence points to your sister. Former Las Vegas Homicide Detective Jim Snow quit the force three years ago to play poker fulltime, but he’s been losing consistently for the last six months. Now he has a new challenge to take his mind away from his problems. His sister’s estranged husband was found murdered in an RV storage lot shortly after selling his trailer for eight-thousand dollars cash to their neighbor. Snow and his sister have issues—the last time Snow saw her was two years ago at their mother’s funeral in Minnesota—though they only live three miles apart. Suspicion points to his sister, since she stands to collect on the life insurance, and her previous husband died during a robbery near an ATM machine. Living off of life insurance settlements from her first two husbands, she’s never had to work. Snow’s not sure his sister is innocent, but he launches an investigation, enlisting the help of a feisty female detective.
Tags: crime, humour, las vegas, mystery

Web reviews and user comments have been pretty positive and, at about a buck for the two novels, worth investigating.
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Old 06-28-2010, 09:59 PM   #2
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Thanks, SensualPoet, for the mention. I'm flattered--came swooping in here to ask if you've read either of them yet, and if so, what you think. I'm curious.
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Old 06-29-2010, 05:28 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rex kusler View Post
Thanks, SensualPoet, for the mention. I'm flattered--came swooping in here to ask if you've read either of them yet, and if so, what you think. I'm curious.

I see this is your first-time post, so let me welcome you to MobileRead.

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Old 07-01-2010, 09:01 PM   #4
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Thanks, Don. Nice place you've got here.
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Old 07-09-2010, 04:43 PM   #5
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I got a little side-tracked whilst reading Punctured and, I confess, have put it aside for a few days ... the premise is intriguing enough and the plotting, so far, has kept some interest going.

The difficulty for me is the author's style. How can I put this? It's very "masculine", very "left brain", with niggling details about wrenches and car models and "guy stuff" ... and a paucity of internalised worlds, what makes the characters tick, all that "right brain" of emotion and creativity is largely side-stepped.

This is a bit of a problem because it's hard to develop sympathy for the characters: brother goes to visit sister who calls in a panic, not having spoken to him for two years -- her husband has just been murdered and she's a potential suspect ... imagine what the conversation might be like? A scene like that is tailor made for character development, back-story, grabbing the reader right into the vortex of the sister's predicament and her brother's mixed emotions about being suddenly invoked ... and wondering if she is innocent or spinning lies which (perhaps) led to their estrangement. But there's none of that.

Elsewhere, we get an engineer's description of the inside of trailer home her husband was trying to sell just before his death; or what the office of the clerk minding the storage lockers looks like ... but little of the motivation of the brother, or his reaction at standing before the spot his brother-in-law was murdered only hours before.

If I make it to the end, I may feel the plotting redeems the deficiencies. There are a great many popular authors who lack a literary bent but provide gripping reading because they construct dramatic situations with unexpected twists and turns yet whose characters are pretty work-a-day cardboard cut-outs. If my impressions change, I'll post an update.

Happily, you can download a chapter or two to see if this works for you. The other novel, Angela, is free at the moment and may reveal another of the author's sides as it is, I believe, a ghost story -- or at least has super-natural elements.
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Old 07-09-2010, 06:46 PM   #6
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Thanks for your preliminary assessment, SensualPoet. As for Angela, I'm not sure if you would like that one. You may not like the humor in it, but who knows. The only place it's still free is Kobo books. I pulled both my books from Smashwords, and Angela has been removed from B&N. My intention is to only deal with Amazon in the future, even though they have trouble spelling my name.
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Old 07-10-2010, 03:23 PM   #7
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Good luck to you, Rex! I'll be watching for future titles.

I am a strong Amazon supporter, so glad to hear you will continue to offer your books there. I hope you reconsider Kobo as a venue, however, since they offer ePub which Amazon does not. Making your work available in both Kindle and ePub formats surely is the best choice for you in the longer term.
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Old 07-11-2010, 09:24 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rex kusler View Post
Thanks for your preliminary assessment, SensualPoet. As for Angela, I'm not sure if you would like that one. You may not like the humor in it, but who knows. The only place it's still free is Kobo books. I pulled both my books from Smashwords, and Angela has been removed from B&N. My intention is to only deal with Amazon in the future, even though they have trouble spelling my name.
Why on earth would you limit yourself only to amazon? That's cutting out a lot of your audience with devices that don't support DRM'd mobi. I won't buy from amazon because their DRM is too much of a pain to remove.

You should at least be available via Kobo so people with readers other than Kindles can buy your stuff.

-Marcy
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Old 07-12-2010, 10:05 AM   #9
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Why on earth would you limit yourself only to amazon? That's cutting out a lot of your audience with devices that don't support DRM'd mobi. I won't buy from amazon because their DRM is too much of a pain to remove.

You should at least be available via Kobo so people with readers other than Kindles can buy your stuff.

-Marcy
Every indie author has a choice on DRM or not, for each title (with the default being NO drm and TTS enabled). Kobo means EPUB and DRM (as does B&N or Sony, the others that Smashwords gets you into), which has the same exclusions of readers that don't support their DRM (especially in the case of B&N. I don't think that Adobe DRM is "easier" to remove than mobi (considering it took a bit longer for the hacks to be talked about, it must be harder; I know it looks like the tool is harder to use).

Also with Smashwords, you get some great benefits, but control over the final format of your ebook is not one of them (some of the epubs convert very badly, as do some of the mobi books there; they should at least upgrade to allow an epub source file, which would convert better to all of the formats they support than word docs do).
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Old 07-12-2010, 10:55 AM   #10
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The reason I pulled my books from Smashwords, and eventually all sites they distribute to, is because I've sold nearly 8000 copies of Punctured on Amazon. Yet, only have one sale on Smashwords, and it doesn't look like I've sold any on Kobo.
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Old 07-12-2010, 11:31 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by rex kusler View Post
The reason I pulled my books from Smashwords, and eventually all sites they distribute to, is because I've sold nearly 8000 copies of Punctured on Amazon. Yet, only have one sale on Smashwords, and it doesn't look like I've sold any on Kobo.
This is the truth, and it's a hard truth for all of us who wanted ePub to win the format war. But that war is finally over. Amazon IS the ebook market now and it has rapidly become the most attractive for both writer and audience worldwide.

Best of luck with your books, Rex.
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Old 07-12-2010, 02:39 PM   #12
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nice! thanks specially
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Old 07-12-2010, 07:06 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rex kusler View Post
The reason I pulled my books from Smashwords, and eventually all sites they distribute to, is because I've sold nearly 8000 copies of Punctured on Amazon. Yet, only have one sale on Smashwords, and it doesn't look like I've sold any on Kobo.
Wow! That's a fascinating statistic!

There may, however, be value in remaining on Smashwords for the promotional value, even if the sales ultimately land at Amazon. There is something to be said for being seen in multiple channels. Just a thought.

For what it's worth, I bought my copy of Punctured at Kobobooks.
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Old 07-12-2010, 07:53 PM   #14
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SensualPoet, that's a good point. Hmmm, maybe I have sold some at Kobo. Okay, I'll put them back up on Smashwords, Kobo & Apple. Actually they're still at Kobo and Apple; I'll leave them there. Thanks. That's good advice.

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Old 07-12-2010, 09:33 PM   #15
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Thank you, I have downloaded Angela, it is in my TBR pile.
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