What’s on the Blog
One of my favorite places to be is in a book. I read a wide variety. Books are food for the mind and soul, and I cannot seem to restrict myself to one genre.
My novel writing, on the other hand, is focused on young adult contemporary novels and novels for the general market.
Every week I blog about books I’m reading. I usually post an author interview, news from my bookish friends, or writing related updates about once a month.
About My Novel Writing
I tend to write about people who are facing tough times. I’ve written about grief, eating disorders, abandonment, and other difficult issues. There isn’t always a romantic element, but when there is the romances are sweet. Endings aren’t sugar coated, but I always strive to leave my readers with a sense of hope. No graphic language, sex, or violence, just plenty of heart tugging emotion and laughing. My fiction has a slight to rich southern flavor, depending on the book. I have two books featuring a character on the autism spectrum. I am currently seeking representation while I continue to work on my craft.
I spend most of my writing time working on my novels, but I blog here and on my homeschool blog, Undaunted Homeschool.
You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.
The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls-Anissa Gray
This book was jam packed with emotion. Talk about a complicated family life.
What struck me was the fact that the family members still tried to have relationships with each other even though their past wounds had formed and shaped them, teaching them to deal with life in a variety of unhealthy ways. The book is uncomfortable to read at times, and I had the feeling I was eavesdropping on intensely personal moments have a family in crisis. At the same time I found it difficult to put the book down. It’s one of those books that makes you examine your own family history, and either be grateful you survived, or grateful you didn’t experience certain situations. Possibly both.
The characters in this book had tremendous depth.
This is a novel that explores various issues that could be triggering for some people.
The Thing With Feathers by McCall Hoyle
“Some people see the liquid and think half full. Others only see the air and think half empty. Sometimes I get the sense Chatham sees it all, which is kind of terrifying. I don’t know if I want him to see me–the real me.”
This book caught my eye because I love the Emily Dickinson quote and I loved the cover. It’s been on my list for quite some time.
Emilie is struggling with the loss of her father, who died from a terminal illness four years ago. She also has epilepsy.
I had loads of sympathy for the main character and liked her right away. It is an easy to read, sweet, heartwarming type story. Emilie must navigate a new environment and learns that she has been wrong about many of her assumptions. It has a bit of romance, a bit of mother/daughter relationship (y’all know I love a good mother/daughter story), and, of course, it is a hopeful book as the title indicates. I love a book that is about hope.
I will confess, I got a little teary sometimes. I found myself chuckling every now and then, as well.
Emily Dickinson is given quite a few nods, which I appreciate. I learned something about her that I did not know.
The story ties everything together nicely.
I liked it.
The next PITMAD is on Dec 5th. It’s almost time to tweet your pitch. Are you ready?
I wrote a blog post about what I’ve learned about twitter parties over at Almost an Author. I talk about getting hearts from an agent on my short list and from an established publisher, how to craft a tweet, and links to other twitter parties.
Click to read How to Succeed with PITMAD.
For the PITMAD and Pitchwars schedule, visit the Pitchwars site here.
Have any PITMAD tips to share? Comment below or at Almost an Author.
For early access to a reading of Beauty Shop Christmas by yours truly, sign up for my newsletter here. It’s a humorous story I hope leaves you with a smile.
“In fact, I was glad to know something not everyone did: that there are better bonds than blood.”
Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk
Twelve year old Crow lives in a small isolated community. She lives with Osh, who is raising her, although he is no blood relation. Crow washed up on shore one day. The other inhabitants of the small Massachusetts island have shunned her for the most part, except for Miss Maggie, a neighbor.
Mysteries abound in this coming of age that explores what the true meaning of family is. There was a certain type of sweet sadness infused in this story that made it achingly beautiful.
I was sad when the story was over because I wanted to stay a little bit longer with the characters. If you like historical coming of age stories with a dash of mystery and striking pose, get this one.
Good for all ages.
Major Book Love
Historical Fiction with Heart
Appropriate for all young readers and adults.
A Christmas Short Story
For something a little different, I wrote a humorous short story told from the point of view of my YA character’s aunt. Then I decided to read it aloud and make an audio recording!
This was fun, because I got to do the voices of the characters. I kept unintentionally adding to the story and changing it as I read. I didn’t mean to. I don’t think I have a future as a voice actor, unless there is a market for a southern flavored storyteller who takes liberties with prose.
I was shocked when we were successful enough to call it a wrap in only three takes.
I plan to put Beauty Shop Christmas up Thanksgiving weekend, but if you’d like an early sneak peek, sign up for my newsletter here for a preview.
I’m Not Dying With You Tonight
By Kimberly Jones and Gilly Segal
Wow. This was a fast paced read that kept me turning pages. Well written. I was completely immersed in the story from the first page. Highly recommended.
At a Friday night football game a fight breaks out. Lena and Campbell go to the same school, but aren’t friends. When a fight breaks out at a Friday night football game, it turns into more than just a fight. The situation escalates. Lena and Campbell try to get home, but the violence seems inescapable.
Told from alternating viewpoints. This is a great book club selection. I read it as part of the Big Library Read. It’s one worth discussing. Good topic.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Blind Dates Bridesmaids and Other Disasters. It’s funny and fun to read, but had a few tear-jerking type moments as well.The writing was great.
Our heroine is twenty-seven years old, is a second grade school teacher, and shares an apartment with two other women friends. One of her roommates is planning her wedding, and this catapults Rachel into a dating frenzy. She’s been gun shy after a breakup that happened seven years ago and it’s time to move on.
The series of blind dates was hilarious and the predicaments Rachel got herself into echo the experiences I think we have all had. The difference being Rachel managed to get stuck on bad date repeat.
The relationships between the women were well done, the second chance romance sweet. The cast was large but didn’t feel cluttered.
All in all, and enjoyable, laugh out loud read.
A solid, second chance romcom with lots of five star moments.