C.S. Einfeld's Blog - Posts Tagged "ya"

Merry Christmas, everyone!

We're having quite an exciting morning here on 'One Field Farm'. Santa and Amazon.com have brought us an AmAzInG gift!

NEVERDARK is now at #35 on Amazon Best Seller's for Children's Literature (ebooks)

Here's the link:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/bestsellers/...

Woohoo!
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Published on December 25, 2011 11:50 • 66 views • Tags: adventure, children-s, fairy, fantasy, middle-grade, tween, ya, young-adult
Wow!

Can't believe it. We're still listed on Amazon's Best Sellers for Children's Lit in ebooks, #37 and, even better, #31 for Children's Sci-Fi, Fantasy & Magic!

http://www.amazon.com/gp/bestsellers/...
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Published on December 28, 2011 15:16 • 78 views • Tags: amazon, best, best-sellers, fairy, fantasy, middle-grade, teen, ya, young-adult
Hidden
Hidden (Marchwood Vampire Series) by Shalini Boland


HIDDEN by Shalini Boland is a YA paranormal romance that delivers, and then some. Madison Greene is the Goth girl we all secretly (or not so secretly), want to be: tough, cool, smart. She's also dealing with some very serious issues: foster-care, borderline-abusive adults, and keeping her little bro, Ben, safe and as carefree as possible in a very dodgy environment. Now, throw in a cadre of ancient, breathtakingly beautiful vampires, and the stage is set for intrigue to ensue.

So far, we've covered some of the things you might expect in the genre but, here are some things that I think make Hidden a cut-above:

- The history of the Vampires. It's hard to detail too much without including any spoilers but, let's just say, their story, all on its own, would be enough for me to recommend this book. Boland masterfully weaves snippets of RL Turkish history and the magnificent Cappadocian caves with a new twist on traditional Vampire lore. I'm impressed, and now I need to visit Turkey.

- Alexandre. Yes, yes, he's beautiful, and powerful, and all things sexy as every good vampire hottie should be. But, he's also achingly vulnerable. He needs Maddy as much as she needs him and together, they complete each other. Again, Boland knocks the romance side of the story out of the park.

- The Intrigue. There were parts of the story where I found myself really miffed with Ms. Boland. Not because she failed to engage me, but because I really needed to put HIDDEN down to go off to take care of other RL obligations, but couldn't! WHAT is behind that cellar door? WHAT is buried under the Turkish desert? WHO is screaming and WHAT are they screaming AT??? That's just a partial list, but you get the point. Is this book a bona-fide "page-turner"? Yes, indeed it is.

So, with that, a hearty FIVE STAR recommendation from me. :o)
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Published on February 05, 2012 16:00 • 85 views • Tags: fantasy, goth, paranormal, paranormal-romance, romance, teen, vampire, vampires, ya
reposted from my blog: www.authorcseinfeld.blogspot.com

WARNING: RANT ALERT!!!

What’s the deal with all the bland protagonists in Tween Fic?

I’m thinking of two stupendously successful books which, imo, have utterly uninspiring heroes.

First, James Patterson’s foray into the world of Middle School, titled (aptly), Middle School, the Worst Years of My Life, where the main character, Rafe, sets out to break every rule in the book—literally. As a premise, it’s great. I loved it. As a reader, I couldn't wait to find out what mayhem Rafe would attempt and even more, as a writer, I couldn’t wait to learn how his character would grow over the course of the story.

Patterson delivers on the first part, and it’s thoroughly entertaining. But, on the second? What a disappointment! Not only does Rafe learn nothing from his escapades, he’s essentially rewarded for them. He goes off to start fresh in a new school for gifted Artists, but does he do so because he’s earned it? No, he does so because he’s been expelled from his current school and a good-hearted teacher sees his innate, artistic abilities and takes pity on him.

This is all very warm and fuzzy, but does it inspire? Does Rafe overcome anything to gain such a wonderful new opportunity? No. He doesn’t. Really, he’s just lucky to have such a good teacher take a personal interest in him despite his incredibly egocentric behavior.

And, the girls don’t have it any better. If you want your daughters to read about how cool it is to be utterly vacuous, petty, materialistic, and mean, then I recommend The Dork Diaries Collection: Dork Diaries; Dork Diaries 2; Dork Diaries 3 .

Here’s what The School Library Journal has to say about the series:

Grade 5-8–Fourteen-year-old Nikki J. Maxwell has been awarded a scholarship to a prestigious private middle school as a part of her father's bug extermination contract. Her angst as she deals with the resident mean girl, her embarrassing parents, her crush on the hot boy, and making new friends are all recorded alongside numerous sketches of her life. Although occasionally amusing, Nikki is not a very likable character. She is shallow and self-centered and fails to show any growth in the book, even as she one-ups popular and cruel MacKenzie in the end. In fact, Nikki, who steals her neighbor's hearing aid and plays pranks on her little sister, is somewhat of a mean girl herself. All the other characters are underdeveloped, including Nikki's family and her new BFFs, Chloe and Zoey. Black-and-white drawings, which are often witty, appear throughout the text, which is printed on lined pages as though from a diary. Fans of Jeff Kinney's Diary of a Wimpy Kid (Abrams) may enjoy this book, but it's an additional purchase.–Terry Ann Lawler, Phoenix Public Library, AZ

Sadly, I concur.

While I understand that it’s appealing to read about characters who are “just like us”, I can’t help but wonder, “Yes, but must they also stay just like us?”

Isn’t half the fun of the adventure found in the discoveries made, both externally and internally? Isn’t a character who’s flawed and imperfect (just like us), so much more endearing when they’ve really slogged it out through the course of the story and wound up so much wiser, stronger, and better for having survived the experience?

Or, is “no growth” the new goal?

Me? I want aspirational heroes. Give me a main character who does something really impressive, even if nobody ever thought her capable of it.

Actually, make that: especially if nobody ever thought her capable of it.
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Published on February 12, 2012 12:20 • 76 views • Tags: books-for-kids, childrens, james-patterson, kindle, middle-school, the-dork-diaries, tween, tween-fiction, ya
In recent weeks, quite a furor has been raised around a certain YA novel (and it’s lovely, dreamy cover).

Yes, I am talking about The Selection by Kiera Cass. The Selection (The Selection, #1) by Kiera Cass

Wendy Darling, one of Goodreads’ most read and well respected reviewers didn’t much like it. And, as is her habit, she very eloquently said so. As Goodreads is a site of readers for readers, you may wonder why I’m bringing such a thing to your attention.

Well, she was attacked, rather relentlessly, for it on her blog.

I have a big problem with this.

Authors, listen-up. Here’s the deal:

Eventually, unfavourable reviews come to us all. It’s an occupational hazard. Yes, yes, you’ve put your baby out there and loads of folks have positively reinforced that decision, but you can’t please everyone. In the very same way that you’ve picked up dozens (hundreds?), of books , only to drop them as if they caused acid-burn to your eyes minutes later, someone, somewhere, will do to you and yours.

One day, this will happen to me.

So far, Neverdark has been pretty uniformly well-received, but sooner or later, some honest reviewer is going to ‘hate it and say it’ so clearly that I’ll have to fight the compulsion to tuck tail, run, and hide.

I need a pint of Ben & Jerry’s, just thinking about it.

But, you know what? When I’m done hiding my head under the duvet, I’ll poke my stuffy, red nose out, open my weepy eyes and say, “THANK YOU”.

Every review is a gift. Authors forget that fact at their peril. It’s a big world, full of all sorts of interesting people with tastes as varied as fish in the sea, and you cannot please them all. But, anyone who reads you and takes the time out of her day to leave a polite, honest review has earned your heartfelt appreciation.

So, kudos to Wendy Darling. Keep up the good work!
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Published on February 27, 2012 09:34 • 383 views • Tags: bad-reviews, honest-reviews, reviews, the-selection, wendy-darling, ya
So Excited!!!

Just received my autographed copy of Skin Deep by Laura Jarratt in the mail, today!

Y'all can guess what I'll be doing for the rest of the day! :o)

Skin Deep by Laura Jarratt
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Published on March 04, 2012 09:50 • 83 views • Tags: five-stars, romance, teen, teen-romance, ya, ya-romance
Hey guys!

I'm so excited to do another Giveaway for NEVERDARK!

This time, we'll be giving away (3) Signed-by-both-myself-and-the-illustrator (aka, the hubby, Aaron), First Edition, Paperbacks.

If you'd like to enter, click here:

http://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/sho...

Neverdark by C.S. Einfeld Warning! This book contains (1) very kick-butt Faerie Princess, an Evil Dark Lord, a rhino-beetle named "Gor", Dragonfly Riders, Bat Brigades and an extremely adorable, fluffy, pet firefly with anger-management issues.

From the blurb:
The Faeries of Southnut are in big trouble. Lord Darkwater is up to no good.

The White Castle of Doru is under attack by the greatest army Princess Fiera's ever seen. Lord Darkwater is poised to crush her tiny kingdom unless the king gives her up to become his wife.

Well, fffungus! She's having none of that!

The race is on for Fiera to outwit Lord Darkwater's Dragonfly Riders, Bat Brigades, and even a giant, faerie - eating Spider to save herself and, before it's too late, her whole world.
***
As reviewed by HarperCollins:
NEVERDARK is a charming fairytale - adventure for children of all ages. It is a traditional tale, but it certainly doesn’t feel old-fashioned. This is in large part due to the vivacious writing and the very engaging authorial voice.
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Published on March 06, 2012 09:45 • 70 views • Tags: action, adventure, children-s, ebook, faerie, faeries, faery, fairies, fairy, fairy-tale, family, fantasy, fantasy-adventure, fiction, humor, middle-grade, novel, princess, teen, tween, ya, young-adult
Wonder by R.J. Palacio A few weeks back, I ranted a bit (okay, a lot), about the absence of aspirational heroes in Middle-Grade fiction these days. For the most part, I’m still feeling tantram-y about the general state of things in this regard.

HOWEVER—

Wonder , by R.J. Palacio , goes a long way to correct this.

Let’s face it: there are books and then, there are BOOKS! And, by the latter category, I mean those rare gems that not only captivate us but also change us—-for the better—-by us having had the good fortune to have read them.

Wonder is such a wonder. It tilted my orbit, just a touch, and here’s why:

The story is about Auggie, a normal kid with a horrifying facial deformity. Yes, I said *deformity* although, like everyone else in the story, the impact of that word diminishes for the reader as we, too, get to know this remarkable little man.

The story unfolds through the eyes of first, Auggie, then in sections devoted to the people who know and love him. It’s a study in perspective—-how each character views and copes with the daunting challenges of everyday life when you’re always the center of unwanted, and sometimes hostile, attention.

The writing is sublime perfection. Simple, and yet, so, so powerful. Palacio’s voice carries the sophisticated eloquence needed to lift such a melancholy story into the realm of inspiration.

One of my favorite passages:

“Why do I have to be so ugly, Mommy?” I whispered.
“No, baby, you’re not…”
“I know I am.”
She kissed me all over my face. She kissed my eyes that came down too far. She kissed my cheeks that looked punched in. She kissed my tortoise mouth. She said soft words that I know were meant to help me, but words can’t change my face.”

My heart aches, just typing that.

There is so much wisdom in this book. I’m in no way surprised that so many have plucked pearls from its text. I am particularly fond of this one:

“I think that there should be rule that everyone in the world should get a standing ovation at least once in their lives.”

Wouldn’t we all be better people if we gave more of those and received at least one?

Read this book. You’ll be grateful you did.
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Published on March 06, 2012 17:07 • 118 views • Tags: inspirational, literary, middle-grade, teen, ya
Okay, so, this is a pretty cool event in my world. As my lovely British friends would say, I'm chuffed to bits about it.

Neverdark , my debut novel about Fiera, the kick-butt Faerie Princess who saves her world, has just been approved for the public school curriculum for the Province of PEI, Canada.

Very shortly, it will be in all the provincial school libraries AND all sixth grade classes.

Yes, there's a happy-dance underway at my house!

Neverdark by C.S. Einfeld
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Published on March 20, 2012 02:52 • 106 views • Tags: children-s, fairytale, feisty-heroine, girl-power, girls, kid-lit, middle-grade, schools, tween, ya, young-adult
Woohoo!

Another 5 STAR review for NEVERDARK!

Reading Mom extraordinaire, Renee, and her lovely 9 year old daughter, Danielle, have each given Neverdark a FIVE STAR review!

They've started a very cool site called http://motherdaughterbookreviews.com that I hope you all will check out.

Sign up to follow them to get the latest on great books for kids and their adults.

And, don't forget to enter their GIVEAWAY for a signed, first edition copy of Neverdark!

Neverdark by C.S. Einfeld
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Published on March 28, 2012 10:28 • 107 views • Tags: childrens-books, faerie, faeries, kids-books, middle-grade, tween, ya, young-adult