Friday, September 30, 2011

Book Review - The Haunted School (Goosebumps)

Book Review - The Haunted School (Goosebumps)

by R.L. Stine

Another Goosebumps installment, The Haunted School is probably one of my favorites in the series so far. But I decided to do something different on this review, and ask my son his thoughts on the book, since we read it together. My son is eight and in third grade. So, what follows are his responses to my questions about the book.

What did you like about the book?
I liked the different colors {one world represented in color and the other only in black & white-Grayworld}. I like how they {Tommy & Ben} turn back to normal, the girl {Thalia} hiding her secret, and when they {the two boys} got out & looked in the mirror with a gasp.

What would you change in the story, if anything?

I would have liked to have seen the kids change into the black zombies or the dark kids sneak into the school {the good part of Grayworld} & have them try to get in to the portal of the real school. Then have Tommy turn into a zombie, and have Tommy's friend {Ben}save the world from the dark zombies taking over.

What you recommend this book to other kids?

Yes, of course! Absolutely, super duper!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

SLJ Upcoming Webinar: Reaching More Readers—The Book and Beyond

The School Library Journal (SLJ) sponsors some great events, many of which are webcasts, available for all of us in the industry. This next event, Reaching More Readers-The Book and Beyond, sounds really interesting. Here's an overview of the event from SLJ's registration site. For more details, and to register for the event, click the link at the end of the post.

SLJ icon
SPONSORED BY: Orca Book Publishers with School Library Journal
EVENT DATE: Thursday, October 20, 2011– 3:00 PM EDT – 60 minutes

Reaching struggling readers has always been a challenge and that is truer now than ever before. With a dazzling array of distractions, it can be difficult to engage a reader with text and help them find those connections that are so important to be successful in school and in life. This webinar will discuss available books that are useful with struggling readers but also some of the new technologies and approaches that can be useful in connecting with these students, including audio books, digital and eBooks, classroom projects and more. Join a panel including a bestselling author, a library media specialist, a publisher and a state library director of development for a far-reaching discussion on reaching more readers, in more ways.

Click here for more information:  Reach More Readers-The Book and Beyond

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

It's DONE!

It's done! I now have a completed manuscript ready for submission. This has been nine years in the making, several flushed drafts, and many hours of writing, and finally its done. Woop! Woop!

Now the hard part begins. The dreaded slush pile. I've got my top agent picks and query letters are being prepared.

Fingers crossed - sending some positive into the universe.

The journey to publication continues.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Read for Relief

Writers and readers alike: Check out Read for Relief and bid on items to help raise money for Hurricane Irene relief - signed books, manuscript critiques, and more.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Book Review - The Dead Girls' Dance (Morganville Vampires, Book 2)

Book Review - The Dead Girls' Dance (Morganville Vampires, Book 2)

by Rachel Caine

The Dead Girls' Dance (Morganville Vampires, Book 2)The Dead Girls' Dance is book 2 in the Morganville Vampires series by Rachel Caine. And this book picks up right where book one left off, which is a great way to continue, as long as you're reading one book after another (which I am). There's no lapse from one book to the next, the pacing is fast, and the story reads quickly to the end.

In this story, the plot thickens and Claire is thrown even further into the vampire world. Not only is Claire learning more about Morganville, but she is also becoming intertwined in the battle between the warring factions, both vampire and human. Claire's relationships deepen with her house-mates, and romance blossums.

Wow! Another great book by Rachel Caine - I'm hooked. This is a recommended Young Adult (YA) read with strong crossover appeal into the adult market.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Book Review - Glass Houses

Book Review - Glass Houses
by Rachel Caine

Glass Houses (Morganville Vampires, Book 1)Glass Houses is the first book in the Morganville Vampires series by Rachel Caine, about college freshman Claire Danvers and her arrival to Morganville Texas, a small college town with many secrets. Claire starts in the college dorms, but after being bullied there, she is forced to move off campus, and that's when the secrets of Morganville start revealing themselves to her.

The story revolves around vampires, but also has strong attachments to young adult themes like moving away from home, first love, and finding one's place in the world. Eventhough it is Young Adult, it has strong crossover appeal into the adult market as well.
This book is a great read that will delight fans of Twilight and Vampire Academy - highly recommended read for fans of young adult paranormal/romance.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Yay - Nearly There...thanks for sticking with me

I've been a bit spotty on the posts the last couple of weeks, and I wanted to say thank you for sticking with me. Trust me, all of my energy has been placed in a productive place; writing.

I am almost giddy because after 9 years of work, FINALLY, I can say I have a novel that feels whole and is ready for submission (nearly ready). I'm doing one final read-through and then handing it over to my husband for his final read-through. If it still feels as complete as it does now after that...then I'll actually being submitting. OMG!

So, thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for sticking with me. Hopefully, I'll be reporting more and more news about the progress of the novel once I start sending out the query letters, the partials, and the fulls (and keep your fingers crossed, squee!, maybe a contract somewhere in there too).

Sunday, September 11, 2011

9/11 Anniversary

I wrote this on the 1 year anniversary of the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center. It's an annual traditional that I repost this on the blog. May we never forget...

Photo credit: Michelle Reynoso

Can You Believe
by: Michelle Reynoso

Can you believe,

It’s been a year?

A year of tears,

A year of fear.

A selfish enemy took so much,

An ignorant enemy gave us much more.

Precious lives of many are gone,

Lives of so many more carry on.

We’ve gained a greater understanding,

Of freedom, love, and compassion.

It’s sad to say that tragedy alone,

Has the ability to set that tone.

We’ve cried tears together,

Remembered together,

And now we must heal and move on together.

Never Forget 9/11/01, Flags of freedom wave on.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Poetry in Advertising

What do you know...I picked up my mail tonight to find an homage to poetry in the Target flyer. Have you seen this? It's actually quite creative, and it got my attention. Nice job Target!