The Pyrenees---Southern France

The Pyrenees---Southern France

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Holding My Breath... and Two Great Books

      While I'm holding my breath and waiting for an editor to read my manuscript because she asked for it at a writing conference and said she was going to read it last week when in reality she should have read it immediately it is that good and then she would have felt compelled to send it over to Random House so in reality I am holding my breath to see how big the check will be that'll flutter onto my lap along with the publishing contract I'm going to slobber about a couple of books I just finished.




         Any decent dog book ends with the dog dying. Old Yeller. My Dog Skip. Marley and Me. Knowing that, I figured I could resist crying. 

          I couldn't.

          Julie Barton's memoir is so much more than a dog tale. It's a story of sibling physical abuse. It's a story of depression. It's a story of forgiveness. It's a story of emerging from a horrible abyss... with the help of a four-legged miracle named Bunker.

          However, Barton's abyss is always lurking nearby.

          


                After I finished sobbing over a handsome golden boy (Bunker was a golden retriever) I read Lisa Ricard Claro's most recent romance novel, Love to Win, which is the final book in this threesome. She's pulled off a hat trick. For the third time in a row, she's sucked me into reading a romance... when normally I stick my nose up in the air, above anything that has a whiff of sweet, fluffy romance.

                This story has Dante and Brenna at its heart. Brenna--in my opinion--is the strongest female character of this trilogy. She's competitive--she hates to lose--and she's not afraid to fight for what she wants.

                I won't give away any spoilers, but I will say that in the end, the cat saves the day.

                And not only is it a story that has a compelling plot, but it also has a rescued cat, a man who's haunted by his time as a soldier, some family dysfunction... and some well-crafted lines.

                These are a few I jotted down:


Why do gorgeous women always fill their tanks with gallons of Batshit Crazy?

The truth sluiced over her, a warm wash of self-realization.

Words died in his throat.

         And when you read a book, don't forget to write a review. An honest one. You liked the book? Write a review. You were bored to tears over a book? Write a review. 

         After all, most writers don't ever get applause. They rarely get packed auditoriums. The way you can clap for them, the way you can give them feedback is to write them a review.

        And hopefully soon, I will be able to exhale... 

        What is a great book you've read this summer? And/Or what do you still want to do before summer ends?




12 comments:

  1. I confess that I have gotten sucked into something with more romance than a man should be exposed to. I'm just a sentimental (or mental) fool. Excellent quotes, by the way.

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    1. Jono--Perhaps you'd enjoy reading Lisa's books... they're not so fluffy to make them repugnant to me.

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  2. The only thing I've been reading lately is the riot act, to my optometrist!

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    1. Val--I hope your optometrist listened to you.

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  3. I'm on vacation and finishing up work for the semester, but have an Anne Tyler book, Ladder of Years, waiting on the dresser. I will admit I've made time for Netflix, though, BEFORE I finished the work I was supposed to do!

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    1. Mary--I've enjoyed some of Tyler's books. She comes up with interesting characters.

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  4. Thanks, Sioux. I appreciate your comments about my book baby. I also appreciate your comments about reviewing. The percentage of readers who leave reviews is low, somewhere in the vicinity of 2-5%. Even readers who love a book rarely take the time to post a review. But you're right. Those reviews matter to authors and are often the only indicator we get that our words mattered to someone.

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    1. Lisa--You've had triplets. What's next?

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  5. Oh, I am crossing fingers--well, not now because I'm typing--but I'm crossing my toes, too, that you'll get good news, Sioux!

    I finished Fevre Dream, btw. Some good writing, though somewhat predictable. But still, there were moments...and I learned A LOT about steamboats. :-)

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    1. Cathy--I'm glad "Fevre Dream" was entertaining (at times). And thanks for the good thoughts. Now uncross your toes. At our age, if we cross parts that aren't supposed to be crossed, we might develop a kink or start spasming...

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  6. Wishing you much good promise with your anticipated response from the publisher! Don't worry, people have a way of being unable to relate about these kinds of things, with incredibly tingly feelings associated with it. You have my vote, for sure!

    Thank you for these book suggestions. I admit I'd like to be reading a lot more than I am these days, but such are the woes of full-time employment. However, I did manage to read "Flood of Fire", by Amitav Ghosh, which happens to be the third in his Ibis Trilogy, categorized as historical fiction. I love the level of detail in his books, and his style of writing, considered to be wordy by many of my peers, is something I like to take in, really savouring it...the complexity of thoughts and emotions having the time to evolve over the course of the sentence. I've been halfway through Ray Davis' "Annunaki Awakening", which is an honor for me to read through because I became acquainted with Ray online via Twitter and Facebook many years ago, and it was a beautiful surprise to have him send me a copy of his book! Aiming to get through it in the next couple of months, once work becomes a bit sane. However, I love some of the ideas he is playing with, and the way he is bringing these great ideas together is also great, I believe. This too is a series, a trilogy I believe, so there is a lot more to look forward to as well.

    Excellent point about writing reviews of books I have read! Thank you fora few more blog post ideas. :D Been trying to come up with a schedule for my blog writing, now that I want to get back to it more seriously and all...

    Thanks again, and may you receive the best possible news from your publisher!

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    1. Rohin--Thanks for your positive thoughts. I need all of them I can get.

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