Wednesday, February 29, 2012

On My Writing Playlist: Silverchair

We're going to take it back to 1995 today with "Tomorrow" by Silverchair.  I'll admit to having the hots for the lead singer, but now I think he just looks like a member of Hanson with eyeliner. Still dig the music though.

Hope you all enjoy your Wednesday.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Book Report Monday: Fever by Lauren DeStefano

Title: Fever, The Chemical Garden Trilogy #2

Author: Lauren DeStefano

Genre: Young Adult Dystopian

Why did I pick it up?: It's the sequel to Wither which I read and reviewed in June.

SynopsisRunning away brings Rhine and Gabriel right into a trap, in the form of a twisted carnival whose ringmistress keeps watch over a menagerie of girls. Just as Rhine uncovers what plans await her, her fortune turns again. With Gabriel at her side, Rhine travels through an environment as grim as the one she left a year ago - surroundings that mirror her own feelings of fear and hopelessness.

The two are determined to get to Manhattan, to relative safety with Rhine’s twin brother, Rowan. But the road there is long and perilous - and in a world where young women only live to age twenty and young men die at twenty-five, time is precious. Worse still, they can’t seem to elude Rhine’s father-in-law, Vaughn, who is determined to bring Rhine back to the any means necessary.

In the sequel to Lauren DeStefano’s harrowing Wither, Rhine must decide if freedom is worth the price - now that she has more to lose than ever.
(from Goodreads)

My Review: Without fail I find myself predicting what will happen next in books, movies, TV series, etc. I think it comes with whatever writer goggles I use to view the world. I see plots in every story and suspect how they could twist and bend on the next page, scene or episode. Voicing these theories often annoys whoever I am watching a movie or show with. If I'm right it would ruin their "ah ha" moment.

Naturally after Wither, I was full to bursting with theories about what I thought was going to happen in the sequel. As it turns out I was pretty much wrong.

There is one thing that I think I may be right about but I'm stuck waiting until the next book to find out how right I am. Even while reading I had theories that were shortly blown to bits. I really enjoyed Wither and I was eager to get my hands on Fever. I loved Fever so much more. The first book was contained, like Rhine, within the walls of the mansion. The story told was, in my opinion, a small piece of something much larger that's happening in the dystopian society. With Fever the story bursts out from its micro focus. Rhine's tale is growing to encompass the world outside of the mansion, where the world is flailing without any hope of reprieve or a solution.

Gabriel, who has not left the mansion in years, is seeing the world for the first time. This leaves Rhine with a kind of double vision. She views the world she remembers from before, but she also imagines how it must look to Gabriel. The streets and buildings are crumbling, dirty, and unsafe.

She wonders if she mislead him with her stories about how wonderful the outside world could be. The point, of course,  is that it's outside. It's not a cage, or a locked ward. You don't need someone with a key card to escort you for a walk in the garden.

Naturally freedom, choice and hope are all on Rhine's mind while she struggles to get home and to her brother Rowan.

Recommendation: Anyone who read Wither or If you haven't read Wither yet, and you love YA Dystopia/Romance you should read Wither. Then read this.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Fun Friday with Friendly Felines

Yesterday I flew from Philadelphia to Albuquerque with three friends, so we could visit our friend Ashley. She's the Harry Potter friend who was recently married.

I woke up this morning before the sun and started reviewing pages for my critique group. While I tapped away on my Netbook and scratched the ears of Ashley's cats a wonderful feeling settled over me.

I am on vacation, but it's a writer's vacation. A vacation from my responsibilities at home, from work and writing doesn't feel like work. Even when it's hard it is something I look forward to doing. And there's nothing like waking up to the contentment of doing what you love.

Ashley's cat, Chloe, was intrigued by the story I was critiquing.