Writers Who Make Me Cry
I’ve been reading, reading, reading lately and have a lot to say about those titles. Are you surprised? To start with, I spent this past Sunday immersed in the world of author Gayle Forman. I read If I Stay initially on a flight home from Paris. As I bawled my way across the Atlantic next to my sleeping husband, a flight attendant even bent down to ask me if I was okay. So, on Sunday I was NOT surprised when I watched the movie transformation of this book and yet again bawled my eyes out. If I Stay follows the story of 17-year-old cellist Mia Hall who hovers around the edges of her unconscious form following a horrific car accident. I absolutely refuse to say more because I WILL not be one of those people who spoils everything for the person who hasn’t read this title yet. This is a fabulous story. Thank you Gayle Forman! Of course, I finished the movie at about 11:30 pm and the proceeded to pull my copy of the sequel (Where She Went) from my bookshelf. I then read it all the way through—because that’s how it goes with a good story. I knew full well what I was doing to my Monday morning, but I didn’t care. (However -- I was less than happy to receive a 6:30 a.m. text from husband who is in another time zone right now!)
I’ve also been catching up on a bit of John Green lately. I just read Looking for Alaska and although I liked it, I did not love it as much as The Fault in Our Stars, which I read long ago, crying my way through both the book and the movie. I haven’t yet read Paper Towns or seen the movie, which came out on July 24. Have you read the book and gone to the movie?? Let me know if they got it right! Next up on my nightstand by John Green—An Abundance of Katherines.
Finally, in the past few months I’ve read the first two novels in the Never Forgotten Trilogy by Kelly Risser. The final book, Always Remembered, was released in May. I adore this paranormal/fantasy series and the only reason that I haven’t read the final book yet is that I will be so sorry to get to the end. Those of you who enjoyed the Celtic legends I incorporated into Circle of Nine will be sure to like this story that follows teen Meara Quinn on a journey of discovery about her ancestry that takes her from her Midwest home, to Nova Scotia, and eventually the Scottish coast. (Oh, yeah, Kelly Risser made me cry, too!)
Moving out of the YA area, I’ve recently read Primates of Park Avenue by Wednesday Martin. I was not a fan of this anthropological analysis of motherhood on the posh upper eastside of Manhattan. Although I didn’t cry . . . I surely could have wept a few tears of annoyance while reading this. I nearly didn’t finish it, which is a RARE occurrence for me. I tried to examine why I was so annoyed. I genuinely liked her interesting approach of dissecting a section of society in anthropological terms via field notes at the beginning of the chapter. That part was amusing. What was not amusing were the people she was describing and their neurotic, overpriced lifestyles and complete lack of connectivity to anyone in the world beyond their ten square blocks of affluence. Most unpalatable of all was the fact that they are raising their children to be just like them. Yuck!
As much as Primates got great reviews (just not from me), I’ve recently read the much-panned Grey by E.L. James. This is the Christian Grey perspective of the first Fifty Shades book. (NOTE: the only parts of this book that brought me even close to tears were the sad flashbacks to a preschool-aged Christian.) Without delving into all the obvious criticisms (which I am happy to talk about if you care to comment below-just keep in mind this is an all-ages blog), I liked this perspective/point of view better than the initial series. I often appreciate the presentation of the alternate point of view. I remember enjoying Stephenie Meyer’s free online release of Twilight from Edward’s perspective. I also really liked the novel Four, which accompanies the Divergent Series. I am sure there are many other examples of a switch in perspective within a series. Do you have any favorites?
With all that reading, you may think there has not been time for writing. I am happy to say that IS NOT the case. I just finished the draft of the Dervla Novella . . . which is awaiting a creative moment for appropriate titling. Next up will be Bressa’s Banishment. This summer has also brought some very nice attention for Circle of Nine – Beltany, which was chosen as a semi-finalist in the Kindle Book Awards as well as being named a B.R.A.G. Medallion honoree.