KOBO, KOBO, KOBO ….You are really discouraging a lot of people….including me!!!

Dobby banging head against the wall

 

It is a few days shy of a year that I had problems with Kobo.  I have to say, since posting my angst and finally getting results from raging on twitter, the same problems are still happening.  I have in my most angry and frustrated state have gone off on the one person that I have contact with and a few other people.  The reason is because the same things keep happening over and over!

I am still receiving replies to the original post I posted a year ago.  I have had 1,628 hits and counting on that article alone.  I think and I am assuming that most are just so frustrated and angry that they don’t even want to attempt to post.  They like me see the same issues over and over and  figure that it isn’t worth replying to a post.  Because they have gone through everything on the kobo site to get their issue resolved, and they are still waiting…..

When I had my issue, I had called them at least half a dozen times and they escalated it to their infamous Tier II customer service, which in my opinion doesn’t exist.  You are kept waiting for an indefinite period until you either give up or just forget them all together.  I believe in my heart that the only reason why I received such quick service is because I posted about my experiences, and tweeted on twitter about it to anyone who would listen.  It was only then that I was contacted by a person who works in their VIP Customer Service Team.  He is a smooth talker I tell you, he gave me a $50 credit on their website, and refunded the double payment and some NSF fees that I had incurred because of their screw up.  I ended up getting so frustrated, I gave the credit away to someone, I didn’t want to have anything more to do with them.  I have since de-activated my account and removed their app from my smartphone.

By the end of it all, it was settled, and I was happy.  But then other blogging people I know had voiced their frustration at the  issues they were having, so I decided to help them.  I also heard of others having the same and different issues with either their devices, downloading problems, paying for and not receiving the book they ordered, or paid and only receiving the book preview not the whole book.  I have even done so much for you dear reader that I have forwarded your email information to kobo, so that your issue could be dealt with in a timely manner. At least I hope it was.

I do so because I am a caring person.  I do it out of the goodness of my heart.  What I don’t appreciate is when the same issues keep happening and was promised by phone and email that the issues are going to be taken care of  but, yet, they keep happening – over, and over and OVER again.  Now you can see why I posted Dobby (sorry Dobby), I am so frustrated that things keep happening, not new ones but the same ones I hear about.  It’s not only here, but on twitter as well.

I have to confess, I actually went back to buy an eBook a few months ago, and they changed their site around so that instead of clicking one button to bring you to the payment screen, now you have to click two.  I contacted my person and explained the issue, he had someone else help me, and that person didn’t even help.  They gave me completely useless information!  They did however, forget to mention that they had changed their payment procedure.  Did they tell anyone….NOPE!!

Another instance that they had not informed anyone of a change on their website a few months after that when was a friend of mine noticed that if you have a credit card on file, they will automatically charge it, instead of giving you the choice of payment options, unless you change that or delete your credit card entirely from their site.  After she had spent countless times on the phone and frustrating her to no end.

I will keep forwarding your email information and comment details to them, because it has been like I mentioned before a year minus a few days that this keeps happening.

Will I buy from them ever again….NOPE!!  Will you?!?  I won’t assume, but probably not.

This whole issue comes down to customer service.  There are plenty more eReaders out in the market now, From Sony, Kindle,  Nook and some other not so well-known companies vying for your business.  And there are plenty of places you can buy eBooks from, so your options haven’t waned in that department.  Maybe just better customer service.

When I was younger, my father always used to tell me that Customer Service is #1.  I truly believe that.  I have found more and more in the last few years that most companies don’t care because there are probably 10 more people behind you wanting something.  They would rather lose you and gain 5 more customers.  I guess that is the name of the game, in my opinion, I would rather take care of you the way I would like to be treated and keep you and the other 5 behind me waiting as customers.  Seems to me that sounds like a far better way to go instead of only gaining 5 instead of 6.

Kobo, knows all about my issues, I have yelled and screamed, been nice and cordial with them, even then it doesn’t work.  What ever happened to quality,  a job well done, or doing things the right way once instead of having to do it again over and over until you get it right.  I digress, yes, everyone is human, and we do make mistakes.

But, enough is enough ! 

Kobo Help  / Customer ServiceEmail Phone / Kobo Twitter Feed

Now, if you don’t get anywhere with those links, please leave a comment on this post, or the previous one I have posted and I will help  in any way that I can.  After I send them the email, it is entirely out of my hands, so please, don’t shoot the messenger !

My Kobo statistics for the last year – actual as of today’s date*

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The Mystery of Mercy Close – Marian Keyes

marian keyesI employ this thing called The Shovel List.’
‘A shovel . . . ?’
‘No. A Shovel List. It’s more of a conceptual thing. It’s a list of all the people and things I hate so much that I want to hit them in the face with a shovel.’

Meet Helen – youngest of the Walsh sisters and a law unto herself. She’s easily bored, has an inability to filter her thoughts and was fired from every job she ever had before she found her true calling as a private investigator. But times are tough for PIs and Helen’s had no choice but to take on the search for AWOL boyband has-been Wayne Diffney – The Wacky One.

It’s not all bad this game of Where’s Wayne. It may have brought her charming crook of an ex Jay Parker back into her life, but it’s giving her an excuse to avoid the usual Walsh family dramas and the intense looks from her gorgeous boyfriend Artie that make her heart beat wildly with lust and panic in equal measure. But most of all it’s an excellent distraction from the huge swarm of black vultures gathering over her head. If she hides out in her target’s empty house on Mercy Close for long enough maybe they’ll go away . . .

But as Helen begins to unravel the mysteries secreted on Mercy Close she discovers a kindred spirit in a man unwilling to be found. Could someone be telling her to look a little closer to home . . . ? – Publishers Website

I’m divided on this particular book, for a few reasons.  The earlier books(s) I have read by Marian have been really fun reads.  This one I wasn’t so keen on.  I didn’t enjoy Helen’s demeanor, it was too hyper, too much double guessing herself.  In other terms too fidigety.  She second guesses everything or just about everything she does as a private investigator – what she has done for years.  The background on the book is well thought out, it’s just her main character or that could be the reason she is the way she is because of the plot lines in the book, but this wasn’t a great book for me.  I have thought about it probably more than I needed to and waited as long as I could without giving a scathing review about something that didn’t mesh with what I remember from her other novels, I just didn’t like this one as much as the earlier books I have read by Marian.

I do have to say though, she has a rocking twitter account!  I noticed that she has locked herself out more than once because of her tweeting….too much, too fast LOL

Marian’s WebsiteFacebookTwitterGoodreads

Wylde on Health – Bryce Wylde

wylde on healthThe value of living healthily is indisputable, but what exactly can we do in our daily lives to be our healthiest self?  In his new book, Bryce Wylde sets out to answer that question. He sorts out the confusing terminology used to describe natural medicine and leads us through a process of discovery about our own real state of health by showing how state-of-the-art self-testing now permits us to properly assess where we’re vulnerable and where we’re not.

Whether you are worried about a vitamin deficiency or wonder if you’re lacking the “feel good” brain hormone serotonin — or even if you just want to ensure you’re not wasting your money on supplements — you’ll learn what simple steps to take to test yourself. Wylde surveys and individually rates an array of present-day natural remedies from a no-nonsense, evidence-based perspective.

He takes us on a guided tour of today’s hottest health trends, highlighting what is good and steering us away from what is dubious (or outright snake oil). Underlying Wylde’s ratings is the very latest research — and he makes it clear that in the face of the astronomical rise in disease and the ubiquity of nutrient-devoid foods, we have no choice but to supplement our diets with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants if we want to live to our fullest potential.

Finally, Wylde on Health explores how we will increasingly use the strategic supplementation he recommends to redress genetic predispositions — the future of preventative health care. – Publishers Website

This book should be in every person’s home – no matter if you are a traditional type person, who, is one of those by the book type people and trust your medical doctor’s advice, and, for those who are looking for something more – to compliment what advice you receive from your doctor – To receive a complete picture so to speak.

I would recommend that you talk with your caregiver with this book.  Some things may not be recommended for whatever reason, because some of these options could have interactions with any sort of traditional medical treatments.  But, as long as you have your caregiver in the know with what you are doing, I don’t see a problem.  I intend to incorporate some of the tips and recommendations, as well as doing some extra things that I am already doing, with my caregiver.

The only thing I didn’t like about the book is all the QR codes.  Not that I don’t think that anyone would not use them, some may not have access to a smart phone with a scanner to be able to use or use the codes to be effective.  I will be posting links below for you to use on your regular computer.  It is impeccably researched, and detailed throughout the book. I like that about these type of books, you can never have too much information which in my opinion is great.

Other than that, it is a fabulous book, filled with some amazing insight and information, once again to talk to your caregiver about.  I cannot stress this enough.  I have been in traditional healthcare, and know of medication reactions and alternative remedies, so please make sure the natural health choices won’t interfere with your current traditional medicine plan.  I know I will be referring to this book for many years to come, unless there is a newer version, then I will refer to that.

Bryce’s WebsiteFacebookTwitterGoodreads

Up and Down – Terry Fallis

Up and DownThe author of the Stephen Leacock Medal-winning The Best Laid Plans brings his trademark humour and sharp storytelling to a new novel set in the high-stakes world of a global public relations agency.

On his first day at Turner King, David Stewart quickly realizes that the world of international PR (affectionately, perhaps ironically, known as “the dark side”) is a far cry from his previous job on Parliament Hill. For one, he missed the office memo on the all-black dress code; for another, there are enough acronyms and jargon to make his head spin. Before he even has time to find the washroom, David is assigned a major project: devise a campaign to revitalize North America’s interest in the space program – maybe even show NASA’s pollsters that watching a shuttle launch is more appealing than going out for lunch with friends.

The pressure is on, and before long, David finds himself suggesting the most out-of-this-world idea imaginable: a Citizen Astronaut lottery that would send one Canadian and one American to the International Space Station. Suddenly, David’s vaulted into an odyssey of his own, navigating the corporate politics of a big PR agency; wading through the murky but always hilarious waters of Canada-U.S. relations; and trying to hold on to his new job while still doing the right thing.

Equal parts clever and satirical, thoughtful and affecting, Up and Down is Terry Fallis at his best, confirming his status as a Canadian literary star. – Publishers Website

I have to say, Terry has hit his stride right out of the gate and produced his best book yet in my opinion!  I had a very hard time putting this book down, and when I did my darling cat Georgie kept it company in my wake.  Laugh out loud funny, entertaining, hard-hitting, and poignant all in the same swoop, not to mention some sneeky, sneeky stuff done by the US head of the advertising agency.  It is my favorite of all three books Terry has produced yet.  Modern Day takes on the Space Shuttle in a reality show, how can you top that ?!?  Just wait, someone in Hollywood will get a hold of this and make a movie about it.  Loved it ! Yes, that is a dare for all of those Hollywood Types out there !! 😉

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DK Canada’s Start Something NEW !! – Classic Knits – More than 100 Beautiful Projects

Classic KnitsAn all-in-one guide to knitting for just about anything and everything knitters want to make, Classic Knits covers equipment, techniques, stitch patterns, and includes more than twenty designs for cute things to craft and warm things to wear.

Whether it’s a new earflap hat or bright, cozy socks, Classic Knits will be the knitting “recipe book” crafters keep on their shelves for years to come. – Publishers Website

Whether you are a new to knitting person, or one that has been around a few balls of wool, you will absolutely love this book! From the more than 100 projects from something small as a pillow, or a toy for your little wee ones, this book really does have it all.

It also includes techniques for those of you that aren’t up to date on those stitches that give you those absolutely fabulous garments that you see people wearing or showcasing in their homes that you swear were designer.

Whether you like to knit your own unique clothing or home accessories, learning a new design, stitch, or upping your game to get those ooh’s and ahhh’s Classic Knitting is for you.

I know for a fact that I will probably have this book until the day I die, and then it will be handed down to my daughters.  I can see the fighting now !! Have a sneak peek below.

 

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Right now the Start Something New Boutique is all on sale, so go and check out so many more books that will have you mastering something in no time! Just click on the image below and start dreaming !

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The Painted Girls – Cathy Marie Buchanan

painted girls cover cdnParis, 1878. Following their father’s sudden death, the Van Goethem sisters find their lives upended. Without his wages, and with the small amount their laundress mother earns disappearing into the absinthe bottle, eviction from their lodgings seems imminent. With few options for work, Marie is dispatched to the Paris Opera, where for a scant seventeen francs a week, she will be trained to enter the famous Ballet. Her older sister, Antoinette, finds work as an extra in a stage adaptation of Émile Zola’s naturalist masterpiece L’Assommoir. Marie throws herself into dance and is soon modelling in the studio of Edgar Degas, where her image will forever be immortalized as Little Dancer Aged 14. Meanwhile, Antoinette, derailed by her love for the dangerous Émile Abadie, must choose between honest labour and the more profitable avenues open to a young woman of the Parisian demimonde. Set at a moment of profound artistic, cultural and societal change, The Painted Girls is a tale of two remarkable sisters rendered uniquely vulnerable to the darker impulses of “civilized society.” In the end, each will come to realize that her salvation—her survival, even—lies with the other. – Publishers Website

LOVE, LOVE LOVE !!! I guess I can’t just say that, now can I?  Cathy has taken a subject she has just come across and developed a seductive, evocative historical fiction masterpiece in her newest book!!  Even if you haven’t taken ballet as a girl like I Cathy and myself have, you are still drawn into the gruelling training, the blood and sweat that is left in the practice rooms or on the stage during performances.  The attention to detail is impeccable, the emotions stirring your own as you flip or in my case devoured page by page, then realizing that you have read it in one sitting thinking what in the world just happened.  Yes, I have gushed about her earlier book The Day The Falls Stood Still, BUT! (yep, there’s that one again) You will absolutely love this one in a whole new way.  Grab that glass of absinthe, get comfy in your favorite reading place, and prepare to become enraptured in the trials and tribulations of the Van Goethem sisters as they traipse, dance and leap across the Paris Theatre Stage .  As they walk through their poor existence as best they can.  One thing I can’t help thinking about…what has happened to them in the next 20 years of their lives…Cathy does give you a small glimpse into the future at the end of the book, but do they fade into the background at the same speed they came to the foreground?  Is there something else in the background waiting in the wings? Only I can speculate or dream as they did.

This book for sure will have the Giller Judges enthralled if it is nominated this year for Canada’s Literary Prize for sure! Please Giller Gods, Make it Be !!

If you are on the USA side of the Border, it is published by Riverhead Books.  And if it is any sign of the publicity that it is receiving on both sides of the border, it will be a massive best-seller for sure !!

Reading GuideFacebook Twitter Cathy’s Website Browse Inside The Painted Girls – Q and A with Cathy

Guest Author Post – Cathy Marie Buchanan – The Painted Girls: Two Stories Intertwined

Please welcome Cathy to the blog once again for her second historical fiction book – The Painted Girls which is available both in the USA and Canada right now!  I can tell you if you haven’t read her first book which I fell in love with at the first few sentences, you should.  Cathy is one of those rare talents where writing gets better and better like a fine aged wine…that’s if you drink wine! Here is a guest post she has done for me, enjoy!

 

When Edgar Degas unveiled Little Dancer Aged Fourteen in 1881, he showed the sculpture alongside his portrait of two teenage boys on trial in the criminal court.  The Painted Girls tells the story of the young dancer who modeled for the sculpture and also that of the Emile Abadie and Michel Knobloch, the boys Degas drew in the prisoners’ box.

Art historians contend more than a shared exhibition links the artworks.  They suggest in each Degas sought to imply the depravity of his subjects. What, I wondered, lay laid beneath such a claim?

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Marie van Goethem, I would learn, modeled for Little Dancer.  She was from a poverty-stricken family and was trained to enter the famous Paris Opéra Ballet. It was the dream of many a poor Parisian girl. The ballet offered a chance to find fame and fortune if she had talent and ambition, if she was able to attract the attentions of an admirer with clout enough to advance her career.  Such liaisons were commonplace, and unfair though it was, blame fell squarely on the shoulders of the ballet girls.  It was not surprising, then, that when the sculpture was unveiled, the public at once connected Little Dancer with a life of corruption and young girls for sale.  Her face, they said, was “imprinted with the detestable promise of every vice.”  Degas, it would seem, was successful in suggesting the child’s depravity.

Such an intention was easy enough to swallow when it came to the portrait of Abadie and Knobloch.  “Scientific” findings of the day supported notions of innate criminality and particular facial features—low forehead, forward-thrusting jaw—that marked a person as having a tendency toward crime.  Those features are incorporated into the portrait (and the sculpture, too).  Even more telling, Degas titled the portrait “Criminal Physiognomies.”

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What fascinated me most of all, though, as I researched the stories of Marie and the boys was the possibility the link between the artworks went beyond the shared exhibition and the suggestion of criminality.  All three youths had inhabited the same underbelly of Paris, and I could not stop myself from imagining their paths had crossed, the ways in which such a meeting might have altered destinies.  Yes, I wanted to tell both stories, but I wanted to intertwine their lives, too.  And so on the pages of The Painted Girls, there is a fateful day when Marie’s older sister meets Abadie behind the Paris Opéra.

It certainly does make you think about this, doesn’t it?

Thank you so much Cathy for this, and stay tuned for my review of The Painted Girls.