A Class Act with many a toxically tight twist of phrase.
Startlingly fresh, scathingly real and dramatically evocative. A brilliant mind only barely cA Class Act with many a toxically tight twist of phrase.
Startlingly fresh, scathingly real and dramatically evocative. A brilliant mind only barely concealed by the words on the pages, words which find a spot deep inside and ache with their truth and glaring insight. Surviving Michael is as dark as it is light, hilarious as it is painful. The book is about stretching the ordinary and the exhilaration(and risk) that whips up on the shirt tales of pushing boundaries. Four friends carry a nasty secret into their future, a future that sees them brood over the darkness it throttles them with every year when they meet to tacitly commemorate the deed. None have hit their mark in life, but their shared guilt has them bound like no other tether. They embark on capturing a sense of their lost innocence by recreating the dares that caused the tragedy of the past. Be prepared to be thrown into a caldron of emotions, a cauldron which hurtles through the air at breakneck speed. Bounce off the sides of the unbelievable, but totally hysterical situations each member of the gang is forced to endure, and laugh your head off at the wickedly conjured magic only this nature of crazy can elicit.
This book is not only daringly original, it is written by such a blatantly talented hand that it cannot fail to squeeze the breath, tears and laughter out of you in equal measure... and to wish that the author had another novel you could almost immediately bury your head in....more
Revel in a collection of quality fiction with enough variety and style to suit any taste. Each piece is well written, carefully plotted and aimed at sRevel in a collection of quality fiction with enough variety and style to suit any taste. Each piece is well written, carefully plotted and aimed at satisfying the market it is designed for.
Generally with collections like these, I hate to choose a favorite, but one story truly stood out for me, Tin Foil Tiarars, by Jeanette Lewis , and I can only recommend it as a fun, professional written, well developed tale that cannot fail to satisfy.
Tin Foil Tiaras, pivots around a dysfunctional family in which both the mother and daughter are beauty-pagent-winner material. A professional beauty pageant coach is hired to get the daughter the title.
The plot develops the coach's story--she is a mixture of whimsy and ambition with a huge heart, who has to fight the odds, in the form of a brother 'dead set against his sister entering or winning any beauty contest'. The love interest is played out between the arrogant but hunky brother and the coach. All the characters are well rounded, very believable and the story is a riot of hilarious situations and settings that will have the reader laughing out loud, all the while glowing inwardly at the lovely romantic tale at the root of the fiction.
This collection is ideal July holiday reading material so earmark it now, an savor it over the holidays. ...more
What if you were given a second chance at life, an opportunity to use hindsight to correct all the errors you feel you might have made, to undo any wrWhat if you were given a second chance at life, an opportunity to use hindsight to correct all the errors you feel you might have made, to undo any wrongs you had perpetrated on unsuspecting friends and family members? Sound like Heaven? Then you have an idea of the storyline in this novel.
The idea that Heaven and Hell could possibly be defined as a figment of the imagination based on ones own guilt, is indeed, a worthwhile premise to explore, and that is exactly what the novel Amnesty does, and it does it very well.
This book is not a didactic religious fiction, nor a moralistic fable, it is rather a very realistic portrayal of life's choices and people's misunderstandings of mortality. The 'World Building' is phenomenal, with the author offering very believable scenarios for traditional depictions of Heaven and Hell, while still maintaining the youthful banter expected from a YA tale. This book should more than adequately entertain a young audience without making them feel as if they are being dictated to.
The protagonist is funky, misguided and easily identifiable as a modern girl, her issues are real and very 'today', and what with all the hunky looking angels, YA readers should find that this book 'hits the spot' when it comes to satisfying the need for a truly invigorating, good yarn...more
This book will capture your soul, you will grit your teeth, lament...find the snug warm emotion only family can give you, trip on the unsuspecting triThis book will capture your soul, you will grit your teeth, lament...find the snug warm emotion only family can give you, trip on the unsuspecting trials of sexual identity, bask in the heady light of burgeoning love. This novel is a journey rather than a story, a layered gateaux of sweet longing, bitter regrets and the strange duties deep affection puts on the ego. Destination, after all, is often not a place but a feeling of belonging, a sense of achievement a niche you fit into. For every heart that has yearned to resist inelegant temptation--here is the perfect recipe of understanding. King's writing is bursting with color and primed with passion, it sweeps you off your feet with its many convoluted evocative nuances. The simple story of Rosie, the au pair with a tragic past, has so many angles it's as if it's reflected from a prism. The concept of a young woman perhaps being lead by her nose into guilt, or perhaps creating her own guilt is explored with such subtlety that it comes a a surprise to realize that this is really the theme of the novel. This kind of writing is rare, this type of author a 'one-in-a-generation' species. Not since I first read John Fowles have I been so deeply affected by the written word. The questions posed (without giving the plot away) : Did they plan it, had they done it before? A masterpiece....more
An intricately crafted glimpse of a character tethered loosely to life, a world shattered and skewed by odds normally conceived as surmountable, an evAn intricately crafted glimpse of a character tethered loosely to life, a world shattered and skewed by odds normally conceived as surmountable, an everyday-type tragedy that ordinary people face and overcome daily, but 'The Girl On The Train' cannot, she cannot rise above the ache of her divorce, she cannot find courage, she cannot move on. This portrait of suffering is so richly developed in this tale, so poignantly embroidered that the raw pain of rejection etches the pages as if scalded by a hot needle drawn across tender skin. The protagonist is not even likable, but she is, nevertheless, irresistible because the author so cleverly yanks pieces of every reader and tosses them into the traits of this anti-heroine until she becomes utterly personal, we've all felt her angst, if not as keenly. Rachel is an ugly drunk, she sneaks canned gin-and-tonic onto the morning train, she abuses her best friend's hospitality and she is winding herself into the knot of homeless-vagrant at speed. She fumbles, falls and creates chaos wherever she goes, she also lives in a uniquely conjured imaginary world:- she devises a fantasy existence for a couple she often spies from the solitary window of her commuter train compartment. She names the couple, emotes unrealistic affection at them, and believes they fit her ideal of what love is meant to be. Cunningly, this couple lives only doors away from her ex and his new lady-love and cherub toddler. Ah what a setting, so filled with the possibility of destructive force. Yes, force, an entire vortex of swirling mayhem sprinkled to glitter the scene and tantalize the reader. The author not only masters the sense of intrigue brilliantly, but she peppers it with eloquent descriptions of location, environment and the protagonist's state of mind. This aspect is so subtly handled that the scene is lodged in the reader's mind as if by magic, the reader is pulled into the story with all senses tingling: aroma, hue, shade and drama are brushed in at ever layer. This is an accomplished dramatist, and the thrill of the technique will keep the reader flipping the pages well into the night. The story rotates around a sighting Rachel makes of her dream girl that shocks her and pushes her into the reality of her make-believe couple, she has information that could solve a crime, and suddenly she acquires a personality, she starts to shape up and 'fix' herself. This is the true fulcrum of the tale, the turning point that puts the reader on Rachel's side, prompts the reader to 'root' for her and 'like' her. Ultimately the thriller aspect, for me at least, takes a backseat to the character development and the emotional see-saw ride created by the shifting emotions in the story, the whodunit aspect becomes less important, there is a whole book to read rather than only a climax to tie up the story. I enjoyed reading it immensely even if I imagined it would end differently. ...more
Adorable Xmas themed prelude to the Airship Racing Chronicles, which is one of my most loved series. Melanie must be applauded for her originality, anAdorable Xmas themed prelude to the Airship Racing Chronicles, which is one of my most loved series. Melanie must be applauded for her originality, and for the passion she wields like magic and throws at us from the pages of her books with charming, exotic aplomb, bravo! ...more
My enthusiasm for this book is enormous and Oh, Hazel how you crept into my soul. The best stories always manage to find Quote: "I missed the future."
My enthusiasm for this book is enormous and Oh, Hazel how you crept into my soul. The best stories always manage to find that raw ache of humanity in you and draw it out long enough for you to examine closely... sometimes these fictions allow you to take something of their shimmer with you for years to come, sometimes they engage your emotions to pay homage through evocative physicality--you cry, laugh, champion the hero with vocal enthusiasm, but seldom do novels reach directly into your nervous system and tear at you in a way you know you'll never forget--The Fault in Our Stars is, in this visceral manner, an unforgettable book. Hazel's eyes guide, as the tale follows her fatalistic acceptance of her illness, her need to be loved, and her intensely keen, often scathing, but mostly intelligent attitude to the gaggle of characters surrounding her. Her reluctance to be horrified by the fact that she might become an unsung statistic of demise is utterly charming-- what she fears is pain, and her pursuit in avoiding it, in both its physical as well as its psychological sense, is astonishing, but, Hazel, being the Hazel she is, is more terrified of causing it for others than she is of feeling it herself, a remarkable sixteen-year-old, don't you think? The romance Hazel is indulged in by Augustus Waters, is so fragile in its tender beauty that it will crack you open (even if you're not a brittle type). Augustus, whom Hazel meets at one of her cancer survivor meetings, is the the polar opposite of everything cancer stands for, he is the perfect Adonis-With-Brains-and-Heart, he believes in hope, he wants to be more than a statistic, he cares for his friends and he cares about them. Mostly, however, he simply adores Hazel and her quirky witticisms, her 'Pixie-Look', and her yearning intellect. He is gorgeous, and also a cancer 'beater ', despite his sacrifice of half a leg to the wicked cause. The novel focuses on Hazel and her devotion to her 'Best-Ever-Novel', written by a reclusive, one-time author. The book unites the feature protagonists, Hazel Grace and Gus Waters in an endeavor to discover the outcome of the unsatisfactory ending provided by the author of the book they have both come to adore. The premise that perfection in life is achieved by enjoying a long, healthy, wealthy and carefree life full of joyful art and entertainment is challenged so poignantly in this tale that the reality the author reveals through his delightfully clever manipulation of the trials the characters encounter and youthful first-kiss-love they find, is a marvel to behold. Truth always leaves you a little breathless, and of course, memories are all anyone has of the good times they have enjoyed, the picture in the mind is no less dull if the time taken to achieve that enjoyment was as brief as it was perfect. Ultimately that's all anyone gets out of life....more