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on July 6, 2015, at 9:17 pm by bookowlie.

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Once in a Blue Year

  by Michael D. Durkota

The First Ten

Because Once in a Blue Year was Book of the Day, some of our most trusted reviewers have carefully looked over the cover, the description, and other aspects of this book. The reviewers even read at least the first 10 pages of the book. They have each written a short review explaining why they plan to read the whole book or not based on the sample they read and other aspects of the book. Their feedback is displayed below. We call this awesome feature The First Ten.

Over a million books are published each year. Any given person could not even read .0001% of the books out there. This means readers have to be very selective. Even taking the time to look over reviews and blurbs, let alone read samples, is more time than most readers can afford for most books. The First Ten is a powerful focus group that addresses those issues. It creates a helpful tool for authors, publishers, and other readers.


This novel opens at what seems like a pivotal moment. Within the first ten pages, the reader meets two characters and learns just enough about their current situations to spark interest. As I hit the 10-page mark, I wanted to move on to the next ten to learn how they each got there and what will happen next. This is probably a book I would have chosen to read anyway because the subject matter is interesting to me, and I'm very glad I started it. It seems well-written so far with no major mechanical errors. This novel promises to be an emotional journey, but maybe also an exciting one. I look forward reading the rest of the book.

First Ten review added on June 27, 2016, at 10:21 am by L_Therese.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


Based on the cover, title, and genre, I doubt I would have chosen to sample this book. Although the cover and title are quite alluring, the genre is not one I typically gravitate to. The first ten pages were intriguing and well-written and I do have a favorable opinion of what I read so far. I am not sure yet if I will purchase and read the entire book. I saw no spelling or grammatical errors and the book appears to be professionally edited. My favorite parts of the first ten pages were all the great descriptive words used to show different settings.

First Ten review added on June 27, 2016, at 11:44 am by Shelle.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


If I had not read the first ten pages, I would've still considered sampling this book. The cover is simple, yet appealing, the title, genre, and blurb are all of interest to me. The editorial reviews and customer reviews are all very positive towards this book, and mostly 4- and 5-star rating.

Based on what I read, the book does seem like it was professionally edited. I did not see any typos or grammatical errors.

I liked how the story is focused on two different character perspectives, and that their stories are obviously different, but that the reader can easily see the connection between the two. Also, I like how not everything is spelled out for the reader right away. For instance, we know that Dan was discharged for medical reasons, but the reader is unsure at the time what those reasons specifically are.

Personally, I don't think much can be improved. The first part (before the Lost Boys chapter started) left me a bit confused. However, I feel the reader will be able to get a better handle on the message as he/she continues the read.

First Ten review added on June 27, 2016, at 12:07 pm by hsimone.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


I really didn't gather much from the cover/title or the quick perusal of the book's description or reviews, but the bit I read - the short intro of the past and Dan's dismissal, are quite a hook! It makes me wonder exactly what happened that night in the past as well as what Dan is going to do once he gets home, and most of all I wonder how the two tie together. The editing quality is perfect, by the way! I can definitely see reading the rest of this now that I've read some, although I probably wouldn't have otherwise.

First Ten review added on June 27, 2016, at 12:30 pm by CataclysmicKnight.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


This book was tough to judge based on the first 10 pages only, so I ended up reading the entire sample. I loved the cover and the synopsis looked intriguing, but wouldn't buy the book just on that or on the reviews. I always read the sample before deciding. The writing was very good, and the beginning was intriguing though a bit confusing. Based on the little I read, the author does a good job capturing the personalities of his characters. I liked the way the author changes perspectives, thus enabling us to understand the characters better. The book seemed like it was professionally edited.

Based on the synopsis and the reviews I understand the book is about life in the submarines and the different ways the three main characters cope with it in, not my usual cup of tea. Also I understood the pacing is very slow. At this point I am not sure I will read the rest of book,as I prefer fast-paced stories in general. I may change my mind at some later date.

First Ten review added on June 28, 2016, at 2:32 pm by gali.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No

Sarah G

On just the blurb I may not read the book as the genre is not what I would normally go for. From the first 1p pages nothing really jumped out and convinced me to try the new genre however I think that is because it is slow starting. I found the prologue intriguing though. No errors could be seen and the book had a professional feel to it. Maybe an action scene at the beginning could add a bit more excitement at the beginning to entice the reader from the start

First Ten review added on June 28, 2016, at 4:03 pm by Sarah G.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No

Total ~ 50%

This book earned a score of 50%.

In other words, out of the top-level reviewers who read at least the first 10 pages of this book, 50% plan to read the whole book.

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