So a while ago, author Mark Lawrence started up what he called the Great Self-published Fantasy Blog-off, wherein he solicited self-published fantasy works from over 250 different writers and then divvied those books up between a number of popular book reviewers who had agreed to look at them, pick their favorite of the batch they were given, then read and rate everyone else’s favorites.

I sent in City of Burning Shadows, and it got sent to Ria of Bibliotropic. And last week, Ria announced that of her 26 books, Shadows was her favorite.

So I’m moving on to round 2. 9 other reviewers will take a look at Shadows, and I can’t wait to hear their response.

The SPFBO has been an amazing opportunity, and it’s so great that Mark Lawrence worked with these review sites to set it up. As has been acknowledged, it’s hard to get noticed as a writer, and that becomes doubly hard when one is self-publishing. Of course, I’m grateful for the recognition Shadows has received, and it always feels nice to win, but the review alone–the opportunity for consideration–were a huge deal to me and, I suspect, to my fellow participants.

So thanks to Mark and thanks to Ria, and I’m excited to watch what other books get pulled out of the other reviewers’ piles.