My Novels

My Novels
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Oct 13, 2015

Out Today: The Rose Society

Out Today:

The Rose Society by Marie Lu –

Once upon a time, a girl had a father, a prince, a society of friends. Then they betrayed her, and she destroyed them all.
Adelina Amouteru’s heart has suffered at the hands of both family and friends, turning her down the bitter path of revenge. Now known and feared as the White Wolf, she and her sister flee Kenettra to find other Young Elites in the hopes of building her own army of allies. Her goal: to strike down the Inquisition Axis, the white-cloaked soldiers that murdered her love, the Crown Prince Enzo Valenciano.
But Adelina is no heroine. Her powers, fed only by fear and hate, have started to grow beyond her control. She does not trust her newfound Elite friends. Teren Santoro, leader of the Inquisition, wants her dead. And her former friends, Raffaele and the Dagger Society, want to stop her thirst for vengeance. Adelina struggles to cling to the good within her. But how can someone be good, when her very existence depends on darkness?
Book 2 – The Young Elite’s Series

For more info about the first book – The Young Elites – check out the GoodReads page.

Is there anything out today that you can’t wait to get your hands on? Tell me in the comments!
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Oct 12, 2015

Feminism Is Important To Me

A while back another female author chose to use “Oh right, you’re one of those feminist types” as an insult/reasoning behind my opinion that a certain work had shallow exploration of a main character and that the story fell into the all too familiar habit of portraying women as cold, bitchy and means-to-an-end.

That and a few other things got me thinking:

Why do so many women seem to think feminism is a bad word?
Why do so many people think feminism is a grab bag of castration (metaphorical or not) and a refusal to shave your legs?
How does equality for women equate to oppression for men?
Feminism is: The advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men.

When did things get twisted to the point that some women would rather pretend to be “one of the guys” and accept that the patriarchy does not see them as equals as long as they can be “one of the good women”?

I am a feminist because I believe that my gender does not determine whether or not I’m somehow better or worse than someone else. Generic physiological differences don’t determine whether a person is going to be stronger or a better parent. It doesn't determine if you’ll be a better worker or a more creative artist. If I wanted to dedicate my life to body building, I could. If I wanted to build a business from the ground up, I could. The only thing that stands in my way is outdated prejudices that keep the world from advancing.

I am a feminist because I don’t think a man should make more money than I do simply because he is a man. When determining a person's ability to do a thing, actual skill should not come second to gender. We don’t live in a world where men are the main provider of a household anymore. We don’t live in a world where women work until they have kids and then are relegated to the home. We don’t do these things because they are wrong and thinking of them as normative is wrong. If I want to have a child and I want to stay at home and can figure that out, I will do that. If my husband wants to do that, we’d figure it out. Sexist thoughts on lifestyle only hold our society back.

How do we fix a world as broken as ours? We start by understanding what feminism is. We start by holding people accountable when they fall back into the lazy sexist ideas of our past. If we decide to get married, we marry men and women who are also feminist. If we decide to have children/adopt, we raise them in a way that creates a world of people who are aware of what feminism actually is. We challenge stereotypes every day and we don’t allow people to get away with callng us “one of the guys” or “one of the good women”.

If you think calling me a feminist is an insult, I’ve got some bad news for you: I’m a feminist and proud of it.

I am a feminist for the same reason I support gay marriage; for the same reason I support the Black Lives Matter movement; for the same reason I support the trans community. No human is inherently better than another simply because of the condition in which they were born.

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Oct 10, 2015

Social Media Shout Out: CC Finlay

So! Most Saturdays, the blog is going to be dedicated to social media shout out. These are people I follow and enjoy, and think you might too. Let me tell you why:

CC Finlay
@ccfinlay on twitter

Who they are:
Editor of the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, who has written a series of books about the American revolution and witchcraft along with several others.

Why You should follow them on twitter if you’re not already:
A Great book/magazine promoter, CC will help keep you on top of what’s out and coming soon. Awareness is key.

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Oct 9, 2015

7 Things You'll Eat As A Writer

Your weight in comfort food. Seriously, pass me the doughnuts. Pick your poison and expect to pop open that box/bucket/wrapper/whatever because there will be days you hit an awful spot in a draft, a revision, or a review, and you’ll want to have your stash handy (or your delivery boy’s number on speed dial). Other days, you’ll crack open your go-to snack because you’re burning through a ms and you CANNOT STOP FOR ANYTHING! SOMEONE BRING THIS MAN A STADIUM PAL!

The ends of Pens. I don’t make the rules.

Tear soaked… anything. Don't worry if you're mid-draft brain has you sucking the moisture out of a tear stained sock to rehydrate yourself (unless it's a dirty sock, then be afraid; if it's not your sock at all… well, I guess it's good there's no one around to judge you.)

Your words. They won’t sustain you, but you can bet you’ll eat those black lines and curves you plop down on the page from time to time. You’re going to make commitments that are just out of your ability (1million words in a year? Heck yeah! 1million words next week? Laughs uncontrollably and dies of frantic attempts to breathe)  

Your pride. You're going to make mistakes (raises hand) and you're going to kick yourself about them afterward (raises hand higher). Sometimes, you're going to dwell on them so long it's unhealthy (punches ceiling with fist, fan blade cuts wrist, dies in agony).

Preconceived notions of the world – Let’s face it: we’re all raised to believe certain things are true and some of them will be. But we don’t know everything. Our parent’s don’t know everything and they certainly didn’t know it all while they were raising us. We’re raised with prejudices (I hate tomatoes) and as a writer you have to work around those things in order to expand your view of the world. (Most of my characters like tomatoes). QUESTION EVERYTHING.

SPIDERS!!! Okay, let's face it, there's some ridiculous statistic that I can't be bothered to look up right now, but it says you're going to be eating spiders in your sleep. Who knows, maybe spiders are the key ingredient that makes chocolate taste good? One way or another, you're eating those eight legged creepy crawlies, so get over it now. In fact, if you can take those arachnid aperitifs and turn them into a book, more power to you (unless you plan to regurgitate their corpses and sew them together in some sort of arachna-necronomicon. Don’t do that.)


Also, remember hydrate.


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Oct 8, 2015

Review: Alice in No-Man's-Land

Alice In No-Man's Land

By James Knapp

A SF/Dystopian Retelling

Kindle Edition, 375 pages

My Summary:
Humanity, rebuilding after a food-based virus ravages the world, has walled off the blocs that can’t be fixed fast enough. Inside, gangs and cannibals abound. When Alice, one of the privileged class, is dropped into the Ypsilanti bloc, the things she was taught about her society start to unravel. And as she searches for her lost little brother, government lies and secrets shatter her naiveté.
My Review:
Dark, gritty and violent, Alice in No-Man’s-Land throws you in without a life jacket and lets you struggle against a current. Unfortunately, that current is pretty non-existent for the first chapter and a half, but it does pick up. High action with questionable undertones of misogyny, the book certainly isn’t for everyone. Be wary: many of the book’s plot movements pivot on the objectification of our 20-year old heroine.
Chapter openings expand the story and give clues. Overall the story, like many dystopians has a goal of political awareness, specifically surrounding racial overtones. There is no explanation for why almost all of the people living in the bloc have Hispanic names. (based on the idea that this is Ypsilanti, Michigan, the 2010 census showed only 3.9% Hispanic/Latino population) If Hispanic/Latinos are less succeptible to the virus, I didn’t catch that from the text.
Maya & Bassilio, Alice’s street rat/drug dealer “helpers” are fun and intriguing characters who’s involvement left me wanting to know more about them. In some ways, that was unfortunately overshadowing of the main character.
There was a realistic mixture of cruelty and kindness within the bloc, which was something I appreciated. I think that a lot of dystopian novels err on the side of black/white with no grey area, too their detriment.
The black book came across as a contrivance and the convenience of it’s information left me a little skeptical.
Unfortunately, the ending seems as rushed as the beginning was slow. I would have liked a semblance of equilibrium between them.

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