Started on 1/27
I’m still reading Harry Potter as a mentor book. It’s great for showing me how to put together a middle grade novel that appeals to all ages, but it’s not helping me picture my bats, or their American home.
I kept thinking about this book when I was reading Harry. I started it in 2018 but only read a few chapters. I restarted it on the 27th, and now I’m six chapters in. It’s perfect!
Willa is showing me her world, with a side order of magic. IT’S my new mentor text, and it’s helping me imagine those bats. I’ll post again when I finish Willa’s story.
From Robert Beatty, the author of the award-winning Serafina books, comes a thrilling new #1 New York Times bestselling series for adults and young readers (8+). Set in 1900 in the Great Smoky Mountains, it's the story of an orphaned girl--gentle of heart, but brimming with the ancient forest powers of her people--who must struggle to survive in a changing world. Filled with the history, mystery, and magic of the Great Smoky Mountains, Kirkus Reviews describes WILLA OF THE WOOD as "A moving, atmospheric journey of hope."
Move without a sound. Steal without a trace. To Willa, a young night-spirit, humans are the murderers of trees. She's been taught to despise them and steal from them. She's her clan's best thief, creeping into the log cabins of the day-folk under cover of darkness and taking what they won't miss. It's dangerous work, but Willa will do anything to win the approval of the padaran, the charismatic leader of the Faeran people.
When Willa's curiosity leaves her hurt and stranded in the day-folk world, she calls upon the old powers of her beloved grandmother, and the unbreakable bonds of her forest allies, to survive. Only then does she begin to discover the shocking truth: that not all of her human enemies are the same, and that the foundations of her own Faeran society are crumbling. What do you do when you realize that the society you were born and raised in is rife with evil? Do you raise your voice? Do you stand up against it?
As forces of unfathomable destruction attack her forest home, Willa must decide who she truly is--facing deadly force with warm compassion, sinister corruption with trusted alliance, and finding a home for her longing heart.
Started on 1/16 Finished 2nd Read on 1/31
Shanna Swendson is one of my favorite authors, and that’s why I picked this book. I’m rereading it to uncover details I missed the 1st time through.
I had trouble with the first chapter, that first time through – I couldn’t get my bearings. I’d forgotten the Amazon description. All I had was the title Spindled. I was thinking Rumpelstiltskin. Wrong story! I forgot about Sleeping Beauty.
I really liked Shanna’s modern twists with Sleeping Beaty. This time the evil sorceress captures the wrong girl, but the chapter changes were a little fast. In one chapter we’re following Dawn, the true princess. In the next one we’re following her best friend Lucy (the wrong girl). The chapters go back and forth between them until the story ends.
This book was written for kids aged 11-18. That’s the range I want to hit with my bat story, so this is another good mentor book for me. I’m also happy to announce – there will be a sequel. Dawn’s parents, the true king and queen, are hiding somewhere in east Texas. I can’t wait to read it!
She’d always read fairy tales. She didn’t expect to find herself living one . . .
Once upon a time, a princess was brought to a strange land for safekeeping, until the day the curse placed on her in infancy expired and she could return to her kingdom.
Lucy Jordan is not that princess. But thanks to a case of mistaken identity, she’s kidnapped by an evil enchantress’s men and taken to a magical world, where she finds herself living out a story that seems awfully familiar. Meanwhile, Lucy’s friend Dawn suspects the “aunts” who brought her up might have something to do with Lucy’s disappearance, and she feels compelled to travel through the magical gateway she finds in the garden shed to find her friend.
Now Lucy’s rewriting the storybooks as she goes on the run with a handsome young squire and plots to save Dawn’s rightful kingdom from the evil enchantress, while Dawn is drawn closer and closer to her true destiny, entirely unaware of how dangerous a spindle can be for her.
A delightful new fantasy from the author of Enchanted, Inc. and Rebel Mechanics.
Started on 1/11 2nd Read Finished on 1/16
Would you believe I read Nora’s other book twice before the 11th? Tonight I’m starting I Remember Nothing, for a second time.
Why? I love Nora’s voice! I love her sense of humor, how she laughs at herself. I identified with her first book. It was about aging and the things I’ve gone through since I bought it, when I was in my 50’s.
Nora’s second book started with the things she’d forgotten. I had a hard time with it. I’m a daughter of Alzheimer’s, but it was easier the second time – I knew the rest of the story.
I loved when Nora moved into the things she remembered. Things that I was too little to understand when she was living them. Things like hippies and Vietnam. I got the women’s movement. That was easy! Boys could wear pants, but girls couldn’t, not until I was in 4th grade.
I loved the first book more, but I liked this one well enough to read it twice. Why? I really love Nora’s voice!
Nora Ephron returns with her first book since the astounding success of I Feel Bad About My Neck, taking a cool, hard, hilarious look at the past, the present, and the future, bemoaning the vicissitudes of modern life, and recalling with her signature clarity and wisdom everything she hasn’t (yet) forgotten.
Ephron writes about falling hard for a way of life (“Journalism: A Love Story”) and about breaking up even harder with the men in her life (“The D Word”); lists “Twenty-five Things People Have a Shocking Capacity to Be Surprised by Over and Over Again” (“There is no explaining the stock market but people try”; “You can never know the truth of anyone’s marriage, including your own”; “Cary Grant was Jewish”; “Men cheat”); reveals the alarming evolution, a decade after she wrote and directed You’ve Got Mail, of her relationship with her in-box (“The Six Stages of E-Mail”); and asks the age-old question, which came first, the chicken soup or the cold? All the while, she gives candid, edgy voice to everything women who have reached a certain age have been thinking . . . but rarely acknowledging.
Filled with insights and observations that instantly ring true—and could have come only from Nora Ephron--I Remember Nothing is pure joy.
Started 1/6 Second Read Finished on 1/11
I’m still reading Harry Potter to help my bat story along, but I’m ready for a new book, and I wanted something different, something fun. I looked at 4 other titles, then picked this one. I wasn’t sure it was right. Then I read a page or two and knew I had the right one.
I’ve read it twice before and loved it both times. If you don’t know Nora Ephron, check out her movies . . . like When Harry Met Sally or You’ve Got Mail. They’re wonderful, and so is this book! Nora has a one-of-a-kind voice!
With her disarming, intimate, completely accessible voice, and dry sense of humor, Nora Ephron shares with us her ups and downs in I Feel Bad About My Neck, a candid, hilarious look at women who are getting older and dealing with the tribulations of maintenance, menopause, empty nests, and life itself.
Ephron chronicles her life as an obsessed cook, passionate city dweller, and hapless parent. But mostly she speaks frankly and uproariously about life as a woman of a certain age. Utterly courageous, uproariously funny, and unexpectedly moving in its truth telling, I Feel Bad About My Neck is a scrumptious, irresistible treat of a book, full of truths, laugh out loud moments that will appeal to readers of all ages.
Started 1/2 Finished 1/6
I’m 84% of the way through Warrior Queen . . . And it’s better than I expected. Book 3 ended with Devon sucked into the Void, and I figured that Book 4 would be all about finding and bringing him home. What I didn’t know, or forgot, was how Kali did it.
Book 4 will take you to a new world. The world of the gods, the good ones . . . and evil ones too. The author took all the bread crumbs she strung through the other three books and used them to tell this final story . . . like Enlil’s hundredth rani, Inanna’s journey into the Void, Jaya, and more. I don’t think I’ve read this one before because I think I’d remember it . . . it’s that well written.
I pick my books by author, and I’ll take a look at Emily’s, along with my other favorite authors. It’ll be a while. I have book 1 of Harry Potter to read. Then I’ll skip to another magical book, and it takes place in the Smokies. I have the where for the story, but I need to figure out a problem for my bats to solve. I’m hoping Story Magic will point me down the right path. Fingers crossed!
In the final volume of The Hundredth Queen Series, Kalinda will risk everything to save the man she loves.
Kalinda has brought peace to the Tarachand Empire, at least for now. Bhutas no longer need to hide their gifts. The last of the rebels have been banished. And Prince Ashwin is set to take over as rajah.
But for Kalinda, this all came at a great loss. Her childhood home. Her best friend. The love of her life.
Deven is still trapped in the Void, although he is able to find his way to Kalinda each night. He has been lucky so far—mortals are not meant to last in the Void for long, and Deven has lasted longer than most. But when he doesn’t visit her one night, Kalinda knows that his luck has run out.
She will do whatever it takes to save the man she loves, even if it means convincing a god to guide her through the Void. Freeing a mortal from the Void is nearly impossible, but Kalinda has never let those odds stop her before…
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When I write, I can only have one voice in my head, mine. A little noise is fine. But too much, or worse yet, WORDS, and I must change rooms or pull out headphones. Then I can write on!