So, what books have I acquired and/or read because of social media?
1. Minutes ago, I "bought" a book from Kindle recommended by The Fussy Librarian. It cost nothing. Which book? Power Surge (Anna Jennings Super Novel Book 1) By E.J. Whitmer, Kindle Edition. I haven't read it yet, so if you want a review, go to Amazon. The blurb on Fussy Librarian says:
Anna Jennings is no superhero. In fact, had you asked her about superheroes a week ago, she would have called you crazy. But that all changed one night when she and her wayward sidekick Carl discovered several of her co-workers engaged in some decidedly non-run-of-the-mill human activities.
2. Allegro Court (Bendixon Sisters Book 1) Kindle Edition by Brenda Margriet. Romance genre, which is only to be expected as Brenda is a poster at Argh Ink, from whence a great many of my social interactions occur. It's a fair romance between a musician and a contractor, one of those rekindling the high school flames things.
3. Another from Argh Ink, ALL SYSTEMS RED (The Murderbot Diaries) by Martha Wells .Winner: 2018 Hugo Award for Best Novella, Winner: 2018 Nebula Award for Best Novella; Winner: 2018 Alex Award; Winner: 2018 Locus Award; One of the Verge's Best Books of 2017; A New York Times and USA Today Bestseller. A murderous android discovers itself in All Systems Red, a tense science fiction adventure by Martha Wells that interrogates the roots of consciousness through Artificial Intelligence. "As a heartless killing machine, I was a complete failure." Science fiction, recommended by romance readers? I had to take a peek. Now I have to read the series.
4. I have and do count the comments sections of Web Comics as social media, so when Dave Barrack of Grrl Power made a recommendation, I said, "What the heck." (I linked to the start of Grrl Power. It's up to #720 or so, now.) Anyway, to quote Dave,
So, while waiting for Amazon to sort it’s shit out with Michael-Scott Earle, and we can finally get some new Star Justice and Tamer books, I’ve continued reading a bunch of other novels, and I came across one I really like. I’ve been kind of sheepish about recommending it because… well, it’s “erotica.” At least that’s the category it’s listed under at Amazon, but quite frankly, calling it erotica is underselling it a bit. There’s a lot of sex in this book. Like, a lot. So if that doesn’t interest you, you’re just not going to enjoy it. You’d be skimming through… quite a bit of text to get to the rest of the story.I disagree with Dave about this being Science Fiction. It's Science Fantasy. A good question might be, "What's the difference?" I'm not going to answer that. The "first four books" are on Amazon, there are 115 chapters on Literotica, 103 chapters on StoriesOnline.net.
Unlike a lot of other harem novels, however, the sex actually factors heavily into the actual plot. Yes, it’s almost like the author came up with a reason for the characters to have a lot of sex, beyond them being horny for the usual reasons, and then wrote a story about it.
If the sex doesn’t turn you off, or, if in fact you don’t mind some sex (or a lot) in your harem books, there’s a shockingly good space opera to be had here. I would actually put it on par with Star Justice, which is something I never thought I’d say, as it’s one of my favorite series of all time. Another thing I like about Three Square Meals is that there’s a lot of it. The story is over 2 million words long and counting. By the time you get through the first three books, the overarching plot is only barely starting to reveal itself. What can I say? I enjoy it when there’s a lot of something I enjoy. In a shorter story, you get to see the characters interact with one group or another, but then that’s usually it. In this longer format, you get to revisit those groups and see the sometimes empire shifting consequences of their interactions with the MCs. Plus, IMO, the story keeps getting stronger as the cast expands and the momentum of the story builds.
Another thing I like about the story is that it does OP right. The main character, (and the women in the harem) get really powerful. (Something I like in my harem novels is when the women are really awesome too, go figure.) The story keeps escalating so that they have significant challenges, but importantly, there are a lot of great scenes where the MCs have awesome moments of OP-ness* and are able to wow their allies, and/or crush their enemies, and see them driven before them, etc. That balance is important IMO, and a lot of books don’t get it right.
5. one of the Social Media fora out at which I hang is Baen's Bar. Provided by Publisher Baen's Books, the bar consists of numerous Conferences. The Conferences are full of Topics, and the topics are full of posts. Lois Bujold has a dedicated Conference named Miles to Go. I've gotten recommendations from there. But another Conference, Movies and TV contained a Topic, My Problem With Marvel's Civil War, which dated back to Monday, 9 May 2016 13:53. The back and forth posts of this topic recommended a number of books and web comics, including Marion G. Harmon's Wearing the Cape series.