Zuu's 2021 News

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Need a gift idea? Get your free copy of LAYERS: A Collection of Short Stories here (https://books2read.com/u/4A77zd) now!       

 December, 2021

DECEMBER REVIEWS – thank-yous 

Ever read a book that is not really one’s favourite form, not knowing whether the book will be worth it, or be a huge waste of one’s precious time? This is exactly what book blogger and reviewer Nicola Smith did when she read my collection short stories. And phew, it turned out well – she liked my book!  Thank you, Nicola, for the risky business ;o). And for putting your faith in this author’s debut.  For an expansive book blog and review site, definitely check out Nicola’s site here: About – Short Book and Scribes

    “…very original and readable, with wisdom and intensity beneath the surface….Nicola Smith


My December is made! After not receiving any reviews for some time, this lovely review came in from Cathleen Maza! Thank you for boosting my confidence ;o) Cathleen is the author of several novellas and short story collections, and has been published in many literary venues, such as “Crack the Spine” and the “Chicago Quarterly Review”. You can find her books here.  And you can read her review of my collection below:  

                                “Short stories that deliver… (5-star) – Cathleen Maza

December, 2021 



Author of ‘The Everlasting Dance’, ‘The Hidden Pocket,’  ‘The Watchmaker,’ and ‘Josef the Writer’s Cat, the lovely Ellen Khodakivska, has posted her detailed review of my collection, LAYERS, and I’m bowled over! Thank you, Ellen for your time and your lovely review – I’m over the moon that you enjoyed my collection of short stories.  Ellen and her cat, Josef, also have a wonderful and informative reading vlog (here). You can read their review of my collection below:  

               “Touching, heartwarming and enjoyable short stories! (5-star) – Ellen Khodakivska

November, 2021 


Nov 12 is here and it’s time to celebrate my



… a 99c/p Countdown (now CLOSED)

Thank you for taking part ;o)  


… a Giveaway (now CLOSED) 

Thank you to all who have participated in Zuu’s 1st Authorversary Giveaway, and congratulations to the following winners:  


Rudrashree Makwana @theinkoflove___ (@reviewsbyrudra), 

Jeana Rayfield @author_jr.bee (on Instagram) 


Your signed paperbacks of Layers: A Collection of Short Stories (& a little surprise) are on their way to you … 


 November, 2021

OCTOBER NEWS – thank-yous 

We ‘ve just got back from a  much-needed holiday (although short), so the creative work took a bit of a dive. I plan on conquering that baby soon again though! I’ve also not put together any offers or specials this month, but I plan on cooking something up for you soon. Stay tuned…

I’d like also to send a big thank-you to the following for reading Layers, and for their lovely review:

                                   “Great stories. (4-star) – Maryann Miller

                            “An interesting mix. (4-star) – Nanette Kreitzman

October, 2021

SEPTEMBER NEWS – reviews and offers

Here’s a big thank you to the following for taking the time to read Layers this month and to post a review for it: 

…short, easy to read and well worth giving it a go…” (5-star) – Rosemary Standeven [pls contact me if you can, I cannot reach you :o) 

          “Nice collection of short stories. (4-star) – A. Woodley

Fantastic collection of stories to make you think. (5-star) – David Lastinger

Layers of humanity. (5-star) – Naomi Raven (Judy Ferrell)

My first 1-star rating! – by ? (Amazon isn’t showing me the details). 


Check out the Amazon Labor Day specials by many wonderful authors (including Layers for 99c/p). Offer ends on Sept. 30th.


September, 2021

AUGUST NEWS – reviews and offers

Here’s a big thank you to the following readers who have taken the time to read Layers and post their reviews – I’m glad that you enjoyed my collection of short stories!

An eclectic journey encapsulating the human spirit. (5-star) – Helen Aitchinson              (Helen’s debut novel, The Dinner Club, is out in March 2022!)

Beautifully written and full of life! (5-star) – ‘Amazon Customer

 “This is an amazing, artistic, entertaining, and quirky book. (4-star) – Whispering Stories


Zuu’s free eBook offer – I thank everyone who downloaded a free copy of Layers this month. The response has been overwhelming, and I hope you all enjoy the read! 

Zuu’s July Giveaway – congratulations to everyone who took part in last month’s special offer, exclusively for our Zuu Zone members. If you’d like to take part in any future Zuu Zone giveaways and offers, please sign up to Zuu’s Zone here.

August, 2021

Coming Soon … 


A new feature is being planned for autumn, where I’ll be chatting with authors about all sorts of subjects that might interest you!       

 August, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review, by Robert Lauer

I am extremely grateful to Robert Lauer, author of debut novel The Scars of Gaia, for setting aside some valuable time in his busy schedule to read and  review my collection, Layers.  From the bottom of my heart, Robert, I thank you. You can read his review on Amazon here.

Robert has recently published his first fantasy novel, The Scars of Gaia, (illustrated by B.C.Mitchell) and he’s been raking in very fine reviews ever since! For more on Robert, you can visit his website here. Be well, Robert, and happy writing to you!

June 28, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review by: Eve Koguce

I wholeheartedly thank Eve Koguce for taking a risk and reading my collection, Layers (after many years of Eve reading the long-form)! I’m glad she did, and I’m glad it didn’t disappoint. You can read Eve’s Goodreads blog review here.

Eve is author of the fantasy utopian romance novel, Neglected Merge. It was launched only in April, 2021, and is already picking up great reviews! You can read up more about Eve on Goodreads here, or check out her book on Amazon UK here or on Amazon US here.

Eve lives in the most beautiful place in the world, Riga/Jurmala, Latvia, where she lives the dream – spending time with her family, horses, cats, and books.  That’s the way! 

June 18, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review, by Michael Winson

The author of the crime-thriller Incognito, Michael Winson, was kind enough to review my collection, Layers, and I’m glad that he enjoyed the trip so! Thank you tons for your time and kind words, Michael.  You can read his review on Amazon here.

If you want to read up more on Michael (or our chat/interview), here’s his link.  

June 17, 2021


by: Ian Sutherland

A huge thank you to South African author Ian Sutherland for his ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating of my collection, Layers.  You can check it out on Goodreads here.  

Ian writes accessible, gripping and intelligent historical fiction, and this is what you’ll find in his intriguing novel Featherstream: 

February 1942. With the Nazis triumphant in Europe, North Africa and much of the USSR, control of the shipping lanes off the southernmost tip of Africa is an Allied imperative. At the urging of Prime Minister Jan Smuts, South Africa’s parliament has narrowly voted to join the British war effort, but the country remains bitterly divided. Feisty university student Anna van der Vliet returns to her family farm near Cape Agulhas during the holidays. Noticing strange comings and goings in the area, she begins to suspect that her father, a prominent Member of Parliament, may be involved in a clandestine operation to aid the enemy.

You can read more about Ian and his writing on his website here. Thanks again, Ian ;o)

May 31, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review by: R.A. Hutchins

Today I want to express my appreciation to romance author R.A. Hutchins (Anne Hutchins for her historical fiction), who has taken the time to read my collection, Layers, and left a lovely review of it on Goodreads. You can read her review here.  Thank you, Rachel ;o) 

Rachel is also an editor and proofreader, and her latest book (a contemporary romance), To Catch a Feather, has recently been released.  But that’s not all! Rachel is a prolific writer and her next book, A Lesson in Love on Cobble Wynd, is out on June 10th, 2021! You can visit Rachel (or Anne) on her website here or check out her many books on Amazon here

Rachel, her husband and three children (and their Spoodle dog) are lucky enough to live about 10 minutes from the beautiful coastline of North East England!  I think I’m coming for a visit soon …!  

June 7, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review by: John S. Guthrie

There is nothing better than waking up to an unexpected review that has five little stars attached to it, and which shares an engaging view of a read.  And I am very grateful to John. S. Guthrie for providing me with such a morning! Thank you, John.  You can read his lovely review of Layers here.  

Warm, witty and moving J. S. Guthrie is author of a full-5-STAR YA novel, The Slumpton Rats, which is available at WH Smith, Waterstones, or on Amazon UK, here

He loves writing, animals and all underdogs. He is currently the underdog to a Staffordshire bull terrier called Rosie and a guinea pig called Elsie. 

May 21, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review: by Nicola Davies

It was a wonderful surprise to see Nicola Davies‘ review of my collection on Friday, when we were celebrating my mom’s birthday!  Thank you so much for your time in reading and reviewing Layers, Nicola. I’m over moon to discover another reader who enjoys the stories ;o)  You can read Nicola’s review here.

Nicola is an author of a memoir about her life and spiritual faith, entitled Two Paths: You Only Die Once.  Currently she is revising the manuscript, and the new edition should be out this time next year, for all to enjoy. Nicola is a van dweller in Cornwall, UK, who loves the outdoors, our creation, and is forever in awe of it.  She’s also a supporter of The Hope Foundation, with a percentage of her book sales having gone to children on the streets to provide them with a glimmer of light.

In the meantime, you can catch up with Nicola on Twitter at: @Nicola_Davies7.  

May 14, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review by: Reet Singh

I am extremely grateful to Reet Singh for her lovely Goodreads review of Layers, which you can read here. Thank you too for taking your time to read my collection, Reet ;o)

Dr. Singh has penned two romance novels for Mills & Boon ® India. She is also an ophthalmologist, poet and short story writer, who loves spending her time reading, writing and getting creative with wool & crochet work. 

You can check out Dr. Reet’s bio here: https://reetsingh.in/about/   Her books are also available at your favourite vendor – here’s one example on Amazon.  

May 15, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review by: Dr. Gail Aldwin

I must admit that I was nervous while Gail Aldwin was reviewing my collection, Layers ;o) And phew, she liked it! What a relief it was to read her review on Goodreads – to see that my stories “entertain from the first page to the very last.” You can read Gail’s review here. Thank you so much for the wonderful review, Gail.

Gail Aldwin is a poet, scriptwriter and novelist who has penned many works.  Keep an eye out for her latest novel, This Much Huxley Knows , which will be out on July 8th, 2021. You can check out Gail’s wonderful literary wanderings here:  https://gailaldwin.com/. What a dream – don’t you just envy Gail’s path of creativity?

May 11, 2021


For a wee while on this bright sunny day, this little collection of mine made it to #1 and #2 on the Amazon charts, in their categories:

World Literature Short Stories

Literary Short Stories

That officially makes it a ‘Best Seller’Thank you to all who have helped Layers reach this exciting position.  And now: it’s back to the grindstone, to try reach those magical rankings again!

 May 6, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review by: Tiffany Ann

I spent this day in the clouds, after receiving this lovely review by Tiffany Ann. Thank you for boosting my confidence! Tiffany was kind enough to post it on all the main sites, so you can read her review either here on Goodreads, on Amazon UK or Amazon US

Tiffany is an author of several books, with many more in the works. You can check out all her books here: https://www.tiffanyannbooks.com/booksI don’t know how she manages to get all that writing done (never mind do reviews too ;o), because Tiffany is an extremely busy body.  You can read up more about her here:  https://www.tiffanyannbooks.com/about-the-author 

I wish Tiffany all the best in her many wonderful ventures! (And yes, I’m working on Paths Taken – the novel…;o)

May 3, 2021

May Promo - My Book for FREE

My short story collection will be available as a FREE download on Amazon, on May 3-5, 2021. Please diarize & d/load - it's not all that bad! If you like it, please leave a review/rating ;o) Click image to visit.

May Promo - New Books on KU

Searching for your next favorite story? Check out these latest special KU offers, available on KU now! Click image to visit.

May Promo - More Short Stories

On the lookout for a whole bunch of short stories on offer for FREE or at $0.99/£0.99? This is where you can find them ;o) Click image to visit.

May Promo - Guest Feature

On May 4th, I will be featured on Julie Morris's book blog, A Little Book Problem. Why not take a look? We'd love you to visit. And... you'll get to see her lovely library too! Click image to visit.


I have set up a special Member Zone on my website, where all my subscribers can log in to catch up on my exclusive news, offers, images or back-copies of my newsletters. 

Want to know what inspired my stories? Want to know what I’m up to? Why not join in the fun and sign up? Just click here and get your free story: http://www.zuzannebelec.com/about-zuu/   Thank you and see you there!

 April 12, 2021

“… exploring places and people that were all carefully crafted by the author…” 

A 5-star review, by Fsj Wojnarowski


At which point do debut authors stop feeling the thrill of a good review? Do established authors with hundreds of reviews still do a little woogie dance when they get a good review? For fear of seeming boastful, I thought that maybe I should stop putting up reviews of my book here. But you see, that boost in confidence is what keeps us debut authors going. So I’d like to thank Mr. FSJ Wojnarowski for giving me that confidence. You can read his review here.

And here’s to all authors starting out: it takes a lot of sweat, tears and waiting what seems like forever, but it can be done. If this is your dream, never give up.   

April 12, 2021



A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review, by Simon van der Velde

Simon is a busy award-winning author who has been kind enough to review my collection. I am grateful for the time he has taken to read it and write the lovely review. You can take a take a peek at Simon’s review here.  

His latest work, Backstories, is a collection with a ‘quizz-like’ twist: readers find themselves guessing who the real-life character is in the story. And the great reviews for Simon’s collection are piling in!  He has more Backstories in the works, so we look forward to those too! You can read up more about Simon here: https://www.simonvandervelde.com/

Plus, Simon donates 30% of all his profits from Backstories to three charities: Friends of the Earth, Stop Hate UK and The North-East Autism Society .  Hats off to this gentleman!

March 20, 2021


A blog by author Michael Winson

Michael Winson is author of the gripping crime thriller Incognito.  I’ve read (listened to) it and would highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys this genre. I was lucky enough to be able to chat with Michael recently about his book and his writing. And you can read up more about it on his blog here.  Thank you, Michael, for your time – hope to chat more soon!

For more on Michael and his work, you can check out the rest of his website here.

March 21, 2021


One of the best bloggers around!

I’m honoured to have had my book featured today, by one of the industry’s top book reviewers and book bloggers around: Anne Williams, of the award-winning Being Anne blog. 

I’m grateful to the wonderful Anne for making time in her extremely busy schedule to feature me. You can read the article here.  To learn more about Anne, or about other great authors reviewed or featured by her (or if you’re in need of good books to read), you can find more here

And to my ‘partner in crime,’ the award-winning author Simon van der Velde, who was also featured on Anne’s blog today, I wish you much success with your publication too.

Here’s to all the wonderful folks in the community!

 March 20, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review, by Kayla C. Reviews

As much as I know I shouldn’t be honking my horn too much with incoming reviews, I couldn’t help but add one more to my news list! I’m eternally grateful to Kayla C. for the time she has taken to read my collection and to write a review for it. For her review of these “original, thought-provoking short stories,” please visit Kayla’s review page here, or check out her review on Goodreads here.

Kayla C. is a very active writer, artist, and blogger, who still manages to read and review books on such a busy schedule. Hats off to that. Us writers appreciate that, thank you, Kayla. And we wish you all the best with your writing too! For more on the ‘musings and opinions of an unashamed book hoarder‘, please check out Kayla’s website here

March 13, 2021


March 12 – June 11, 2021

This 5-star “strong debut” is now available for free on the Kindle Unlimited US store here, on the Kindle Unlimited UK store here, or on any other of your preferred Amazon stores. 

It’s a quick read, so why not try this “stimulating, unique read” by this new author on the block? It would help this first-timer tremendously to find her feet in this scary new industry :o) 

 March 12, 2021


14th January 2021

I am so lucky and excited to be interviewed by book reviewer Sue Bavey.  You can read the Indie Spotlight interview here. Sue’s feature showcases an interesting indie publisher each week. 

You can also catch up on Sue’s many wonderful book musings and reviews here

January 14, 2021

FIRST LINES FRIDAYS – 8th January 2021

A weekly look at the first lines of books …

Please check out First Lines Fridays – a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by @Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines? You can also read up on the latest reads at Sues’ Musings’ WWW Wednesdays here.

You can take a sneak peak at the opening lines of my short story Arctic Haze, from my collection entitled LAYERS here.     I hope you enjoy it ;o) 

January 8, 2021


A ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review, by Sue Bavey.

I thank Sue wholeheartedly for her wonderful review of Layers, and I’m grateful for the time that Sue took to read the collection and compile the review.  You can check out Sue’s review on her website here.  You can also find her review of my book on Amazon UK here, Amazon US here, or on Goodreads here.

Sue muses about many great reads on her website, as also hosts many wonderful guests on her Indie Spotlight feature – you can take a peek here

January 8, 2021


My second ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review! By Beem Weeks. 

A second 5-star review is like a second Christmas for the debut author. And this author is no less over the moon! I know that many authors have many, many more such cute little golden starts (and some even no longer count theirs) but I just can’t help getting all hyped up about it.  You can read his review of my book on Amazon US here, or on Goodreads here.

From the bottom of my heart, I thank Beem Weeks for taking the time to read my collection.  And I’m glad that he enjoyed the stories ;o) Beem is an author of novels, short stories and essays.  Together with Stephen Geez, Beem also hosts the Voice of Indie podcasts (a production of Fresh Ink Group). You can catch them, and their interesting guests, here.

December 29, 2020


My first-ever ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review!

A writer will never forget their first-ever 5-star review. I got mine on Goodreads here, on this very special day in November, 2020.

I thank Oksana for taking the time to read my collection, and I’m forever grateful for this milestone on my writer’s path. I will do my best to keep up this pace ;o)

You can check out Oksana’s other reads and reviews here. 

November 17, 2020


My first ever review!

On this day, I was bowled over with my first review, for Layers: A Collection of Short Stories. It was a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review on Amazon US (here) and on Goodreads (here). I am grateful to Al Stone for his honest and objective review, and for permission to flaunt my Gold CBY Book Club badge ;o)

Al is Owner of CBY Book Club and author of the YA Fantasy series Arcadia: Talisman Of El (Book 1), Blackout (Book 2) and Ground Zero (Book 3). You can read his blog here. 

November 16, 2020