Friday, October 30, 2009


For National Novel Writing Month!

I will be a part of the thousands of people attempting to write at 50,000 words in 30 days this November. I have spent the past two weeks working on ideas for my novel and historical research. I now know more about life in the 1400s than I really wanted to. But it'll help the realism of my novel.

And when you're talking about a vampire novel, realism can be hard to come by.

I will be back to doing book reviews in December. Thank you for your patience and understanding. ^_^

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Southern Magic: Better Than Twilight*

In the tiny town of Gatlin, South Carolina, nothing ever changes. At least, not from the perspective of 16-year-old Ethan Wate. He was already making plans to leave after graduation, never to return.

Then Lena Duchannes moves to town. And Ethan's world gets turned on its ear.

He had no idea the girl who'd haunted his dreams really existed.

Not only does she exist, she exposes all Gatlin's secrets for him to see. Magic is real. Also really practiced in this little town. As the struggle between good and evil comes to a head, Ethan and Lena discover their places in the ages-old battle.

Can their fledgling love survive? Love between Casters and Mortals is strictly taboo, forbidden.

But maybe even that restriction can be circumvented. Lena does have a thing for changing the rules.

Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl enchants. This beautifully crafted story drew me in from the very start.

I grew up in the small-town South. How well I remember thinking things never changed. Or so it seemed back then. I know better now, of course. Though I haven't seen quite the changes Ethan saw.

I only wish I had been able to read the book in one sitting. In hindsight, starting it during my lunch break at work may not have been the best idea. But how was I to know it would prove so enthralling? So much so that I was almost late in returning to work.

Good thing I work in a bookstore. The boss lady, and my co-workers, understands such things.

Since I finished reading the book, I have talked the ears off all my co-workers. Just talking about this one book. I think I've convinced them all to read it, even those who don't normally like fantasy.

I can not wait for this book to release! December first seems too far away. I am sure I will walk around the store carrying this book all day that day. Probably the rest of the week as well.

*Disclaimer: My opinion only. Yours may vary. No flames, please.


Source: I own an ARC of this book, which I requested from the publisher after seeing an advert in Publisher's Weekly (read at work).

Where to Buy: Borders, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million

Friday, October 9, 2009

All You Need Is Faith

Have a Little Faith by Mitch Albom is a touching tribute to a man I would love to have met. An elderly rabbi, Albert Lewis, who loved to sing and joke almost as much as he loved talking with God.

From his standard answer to the question 'how are you?' - singing "The old gray rabbi,/ain't what he used to be,/ain't what he used to be..." - I knew I liked this man. It didn't hurt that my grandmother used to answer that question almost the same way: just substitute mare for rabbi and she for he. That song makes me giggle. It always has.

This thin volume (just under 250 pages) highlights the importance of faith. Faith can sustain you through the most trying times as well as move you in the good times. The former played a much larger role in the book.

Not only is this book a tribute to Lewis, Albom's childhood rabbi, it also tells the story of another Man of God: a Christian preacher named Henry Covington. Albom relates his own struggles with religion, intertwining them with those of the two Men of God.

Those two men share an incredible faith. Despite the bad things in their lives, or perhaps because of them, they have retained their faith. They may not call Him by the same name, or observe the same rituals, but both were moved by a higher power. Both serve a higher power. God, Yahweh, Allah. His name is not important. What is important is to know that He is there.

Have faith.

Faith will lead you through the hard times. Faith will make you stronger.

That is the central theme of this book. Do I agree with it? Yes, with some modifications.

I am a Christian. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God, that he died on the cross so that I might be saved. Yes, faith is important. However, knowing what you believe - what it is that you have faith in - is even more important.

I finished reading this book in a single night, just under four hours. It gave me a lot to think about. I have since done a lot of praying and examining of my own beliefs. If anything, this book has served to strengthen my beliefs.

And my faith.


Source: I read this book when I worked at Waldenbooks. It was checked out from the store under the employee books on loan program.

Where to Buy:Borders, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million

About the Author Reviewer

I'm starting this blog to review books. I'll talk about books I like, and occasionally, tell of one to avoid. I hope the latter are few and far between.

So what makes me qualified to judge others' work?

Simply this: I am an avid reader. I've loved reading since I was a little girl. I started reading at the age of 3 and haven't stopped yet!

I am almost 30 years old, female, and happily married. I have three furry children whom I love dearly. I do some writing myself, but haven't finished any projects in quite awhile.

I am going to attempt to review one book a week, more as time allows.