November 22, 2011

Six does have the make me want M-O-R-E!

I've seen him on the news. Followed the stories about what happened in Ohio. John Smith, out there, on the run. To the world, he's a mystery. But to me . . . he's one of us.
Nine of us came here, but sometimes I wonder if time has changed us—if we all still believe in our mission. How can I know? There are six of us left. We're hiding, blending in, avoiding contact with one another . . . but our Legacies are developing, and soon we'll be equipped to fight. Is John Number Four, and is his appearance the sign I've been waiting for? And what about Number Five and Six? Could one of them be the raven-haired girl with the stormy eyes from my dreams? The girl with powers that are beyond anything I could ever imagine? The girl who may be strong enough to bring the six of us together?
They caught Number One in Malaysia.
Number Two in England.
And Number Three in Kenya.
They tried to catch Number Four in Ohio—and failed.
I am Number Seven. One of six still alive.

I just love this series! I am Number Four was awesome and now I am totally on board with The Power of Six. I think it is because the author, Pittacus Lore, plays his own special part in the story. Some may say the dude is a serious whack-job, but I think it’s genius to completely immerse yourself in the story. Pittacus Lore claims to be an actual Elder from the planet Lorien that has observed the ‘actual events’ in the Lorien Legacy series. He is merely changing names to protect the ‘innocent.’ I love it!!!

The Power of Six picks up right where Number Four left off, John is on the run with his best friend, and human, Sam, and fellow Loric, Number Six. Henry is gone and the three are now being set up as fugitives and terrorists after the showdown in Paradise, OH. John’s face is plastered all over the internet and there is nowhere to hide. All they can do is train.

Six work with both guys, who both develop interest in the bad-ass chick that Six is (I heart her seriously!). After John finally reads a letter left by Henri, they learn some interesting info about Sam’s dad, whom Sam still believes was abducted by aliens. Against some better judgment the trio heads back to the wolf’s den, Paradise, OH, to search out some vital info. Of course John has a Sarah meltdown and HAAASSSS to see her. Things get ugly quick and the boys get hauled off by The Man (aka FBI). My girl Six shows just how bad-ass she can be and pretty much saves the day…for now.

There is some major stuff going on in Spain as well. We meet another of the Loric Garde, Number Seven, who is closed up in a catholic orphanage with her Cepan, Adelina, who has pretty much given up the fight. Seven, or Marina as she goes by in Spain, has some super cool Legacies and soon finds herself being hunted by possible Mogs. Marina befriends a small girl as she struggles with her developing Legacies and the realization that she will have to leave Adelina if she is to survive at all.

We also get introduced to Number Nine, who seems to be quite the little hottie…grrrr, while John and Sam attempt to retrieve their Loric Chests with their Inheritances. He is cocky, cockier than John I would say, and is much more educated in the Loric ways than John. I see some great conflict brewing with these two…

There are fantastic snarling beasts, deafening explosions, friendships formed, friends lost, love lost and found, and all around great entertainment! The Lorien world is fascinating and truly imaginative. The characters are great and well thought out. The pacing is great! It was a quick read and I cannot wait to see where Pittacus takes us on this journey. The Power of Six leaves us with so many cliffhangers I am not sure what to ponder first! Book three dangit!!

Did The Power of Six rock my world? Holy Lumen I love these books! 8.5 babe!

November 19, 2011

Guilty Pleasure: Twilight Saga Breaking Dawn

Now that it has been nearly 24 hours I am ready to discuss my thoughts on Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn. Now, I know what you're thinking.. "Another Twilight post?! Do we need another one?" Answer, yes, now shut it.

A friend, and fellow Twihard, skipped out of work early yesterday to catch the 3 o'clock showing in hopes of avoiding the majority of the teen rush. We lucked out. The theater was full, but we walked right in and got seated in my happy middle. The same cannot be said for the 5o'clockers when we left. Lobby was p-a-c-k-e-d! Go us!

So like many Twihards I started out as a huge fan of the books. Twilight was my breakthrough for YA reads and even though the movies will never win an Oscar, I LOOOOOOVE them. The first Twilight movie grew on me and since then I have braved the wild rapids of opening day for each movie. Why? Because I'm batshit crazy, that's why. *grin*

Breaking Dawn had oodles of hoopla leading up to the release; will there be the sex scene, will they show the birth, will they show Renesmee, will they, can they.... Oi! I was a little nervous going into the movie because of the expectations from the media craze. I was not disappointed though. Bill Condon did a great job! The wedding was sublime (though some of the speeches were just shy of ridiculous), the dress, the vows (done by a real preacher by the way), ....sigh.... I nearly teared up when they played Flightless Bird in the background. Had to explain to my friend that this was the song Edward and Bella danced to in the first movie at prom. Hello significance!

The honeymoon was great! In the books Bella is totally nervous about the whole deed and Kristen did a good job with it. The headboard....*giggle* Yeah, I sort of laughed at this, but was so glad Condon included this. Then the day after and Bella is stuck in post wedded bliss aftermath...*giggle* Again, loved how Condon did this. I think my fave part of the honeymoon is Bella's attempt at seduction and Edward's resistance. Holy crap I laughed at his blatant "please just stop!" reactions. Awesome.

The tears threatened once again when Edward finally "hears" the baby inside Bella. Bella's lullaby (also from the first movie) was playing in the background here. Had to explain this one to my friend too. Not her fault, don't judge. I'm the freak with the soundtracks on my Zune. *grin*

Speaking of baby bumps... My GAWD did they make Kristen look like hell without the courtesy of being warmed over. The books have Bella really gaunt and deathly frail looking and boy did they ever accomplish it for the film. Oi! They even got in the lanky, lifeless hair!

The 'birth' was awesome! I was nervous how Condon was going to be able to pull this puppy off and keep it PG13, but wow! The whole past flashbacks were a great touch. The frantic camera work was wonderful. Then as Bella starts to slip and Edward plunges her in true Pulp Fiction fashion I got nervous again. Everyone who has read the books knows that Bella's POV has her feeling on fire and screaming inside, but her body does not move. I LOVED how Condon centered on Kristen's 'lifeless' face, while Edward is in a panic, and then the screen flashes to a crazed-out, hair-pulling, head-shaking, frantic-screaming Kristen. Then it flashed back to lifeless Kristen. Awesome.

I even LOVED how they played in the Imprint with Jacob and Renesmee. The books didn't really say outright what happened that moment when Jacob, in full on I'm-gonna-kill-you-now mode, sees Renesmee over Rosalie's shoulder for the first time. It's implied, sure, but Condon took it one step further. Jacob falls to one knee while we are treated to flashes of his voice explaining the whole Imprint process to Bella back in New Moon and we see Renesmee how Jacob sees her growing up. Wonderful.... 

The end was as I was expecting: Dramatic. We see Bella go through her Makeover: Venom Edition and everything that was broken and frail comes back to life with suppleness and flawlessness. Of course Mr. Condon leaves us salivating for more with the final shot of Bella's suddenly open and very red Vampire eyes.

In a word, squeal! The movies just keep getting better and better and I cannot WAIT for the next installment. Holy crap it's a log way away....

November 18, 2011

Let the ladies rule the Earth!!

I, love, love, L-O-V-E the gals over at YA Sisterhood! These are the ladies who put together the YA Crush Tournament this past summer that set fire to the Twitterwaves. You remember? Yeah, me too. I was there plugging away voting for my most swoon-worthy lad Mr. Zachary Moore from the Shade series. First I was voting for my boy Patch from the Hush, Hush Saga, but alas, it fizzled. Zach went on to put up a crazy good fight against the unstoppable power that is known as Jace Wayland. Wow, it was an amazing summer...

Now the fab ladies at YA Sisterhood are ramping up for the ultimate battle of Girl Power, Chick Supremacy, and all around Legion of Ladies! I am so excited. The voting is still open so please scoot over to the YA SisBlog and vote for your fave leading, or non-leading, lady. Lets go show them boys how we rock it!Woot!

November 14, 2011

Fated into submission? Maybe.

Scientist and single mother Cara paulsen is used to fighting for what she wants and doing whatever it takes to protect her daughter, Janie. But 'whatever it takes' has never before included a shotgun wedding to a dangerous-looking stranger. Vampire leader Talen says that he's there to protect Cara and Janie. But his idea of a wedding night is more like a sexual taming - dominant and scorching hot. With shapeshifting allies, they must fight against an evil race of vampires that has discovered a way to venture into sunlight, in order to safeguard Janie...and the rest of humanity.

Rebecca, Rebecca, Rebecca…you are a naughty girl! HA! First let me say I am not a huge reader of traditional romance novels. They get a little too much for me sometimes. Sometimes I don’t really want every detail spelled out for me. Give me the foreplay without the …um…details. I have a great imagination so... I suppose that is why I heart me some YA.. =^)

I won Fated from Miss Rebecca Zanetti as a Goodreads First Read and was super excited to read it. Sounded like a saucy Vamp book and boy was I not disappointed. Whew! Let me get the fan blowing on me before I continue. Okay, back to biz.

Cara is a single recluse of a mom. She is a classic science nerdette who gets lost in her work. After a ‘sensible’ pairing with a fellow scientist she has Janie. Now, Cara and Janie are very special. Cara has empathic abilities and Janie is actually a powerful little psychic for a four your old. What Cara does not know is there is a world of evil Vamps out there that covet women with special abilities, the Kurjans. On the flip side there are the good Vamps who also breed with special women, but this pairing is not so….deadly.

Before she can bat an eyelash, Cara is whisked away by a crazy huge Vamp, Talen, that claims she is his mate. Janie has dreamt of Talen so she is on board with her new “daddy,” but Cara is having some serious doubts. Since growing up in a very abusive home, Cara (as well as her sister Emma, another powerful psychic) has some major man-trust issues. Cara’s world is literally turned upside down as she tries to come to terms with the Vampire world and her, and her daughter’s, role in it. Talen, her dangerously HAWT protector and, oh yeah, HUSBAND, is one of five brothers sworn to protect the Realm and the humans in it from the evil Kurjans.

There is no stop in the action with Fated, and you can take that any way you want it. Wink. Miss Rebecca added some great twists to the usual vampire tales. Love the DNA bit….AWESOME! Being a romance there is definitely some hot-and-heaviness going on, but all was very tastefully done and I didn’t feel the need to retrieve the closest wastebasket.

The characters are wonderfully done; Cara is someone you really want to hug, Janie is adorable, Talen is….well…(puts fan on high)…he’s Talen. He is all of tall, dark and handsome with more than a little male dominance that I found strangely seductive. I like to think of myself as a good old fashioned feminist, but sometimes even gals like me want their hair pulled.

The pace was great; really I couldn’t put it down. I had to find out what happened and if Talen would finally admit sometime that he freakin LOVED HER!!! Whew! Sorry, had to get that out of my system. But that is Fated. It’s hot, seductive, and makes you want to seriously submit…for more.

Did Fated rock my world? Is a frog’s ass water tight? 9.5 baby!!

Halo was Heavenly

Three angels are sent down to bring good to the world: Gabriel, the warrior; Ivy, the healer; and Bethany, a teenage girl who is the least experienced of the trio. But she is the most human, and when she is romantically drawn to a mortal boy, the angels fear she will not be strong enough to save anyone—especially herself—from the Dark Forces.
Is love a great enough power against evil?

I have to say this was an incredibly sweet book. It is obvious that Miss Alexandra Adornetto is either close to her religion or has done loads of research. There is a Biblical undertone in Halo that is sort of lacking in other Angel novels. Now I am no avid church-goer, but I really enjoyed this book.

Bethany comes to Earth with her vastly older siblings, Gabriel and Ivy. Darkness has begun to consume and their mission is to stifle the hold of Darkness by getting the communities to bond together and their faiths.

While Ivy busies herself with community outreach projects Gabriel signs up at the local high schools new music teacher. Bethany, Beth, being only seventeen (even in angel years) enrolls as a student. Both of Beth’s siblings have power and wisdom; Gabriel the mighty angelic warrior and Ivy is a healer. Beth is still trying to find her way, but she has a tremendous amount of fascination with the human race that could possibly be her doom.

Beth falls head over wing for a human boy, Xavier. Their budding love is truly sweet and almost poetic. It is through Xavier’s faith in God and Beth that they bond. Of course once he finds the truth of Beth things get complicated. Gabriel thinks it’s reckless for the human to know too much, but Xavier soon shows his worth.

Darkness descends on the small beach community and its high school in the name of Jake Thorn.  He is hot and dangerous. Students begin to flock to this piper and bad things start to happen to the students. It is up to the resident angels to squash this foe before any further damage can be done and/or Beth loses her way.

The characters were nice and fairly well thought out. Gabriel is all angelic warrior, Ivy is the loving older sister, and Beth is not unlike any other seventeen year old, despite her celestial upbringing. As I said, Halo has a strong Biblical undertone, but I did not find it preachy in any sort of way. The love between Beth and Xavier was sweet and innocent.

Everything about Halo I found to be subtle in a nice way. There is action, drama, and love, but not done in an over-the-top way you see in other novels. The only thing that bothered me about Halo was the pacing. Being a larger novel it could have moved faster. I felt like there was so much tedious day-to-day info covered that really didn’t need to be there. It slowed the book down too much for me. Other than that, it was a really sweet read.

Did Halo rock my world? Maybe not rock, but certainly a good sway! 6.0 on the Richter scale.

November 11, 2011

It's my party and I'll WRITE if I want to!

Here we are...another year down for yours truly. Do I feel a year older? No, not really. Well neck has a kink, a found another gray hair, and I have the beginnings of carpal tunnel. Crap! I am a year older! Dagnabbit. Oh well.
Yeah, this is how I totally feel right now...Egads.

So what do I plan to do for my birthday? Yous looking at it kid! HA!

Every year the day job gives us employees a 'floater' to take in their birthday month. Since I'm a November baby I usually use the said floater for Thanksgiving as we visit the in-laws in Indiana. This year we will be home since DH has to work. That leaves me to use my floater for my actual birthday. WOOT  for THREE DAY WEEKEND!

When asked what I planned to do for this glorious day in celebration of my birth I decided to channel my inner author. That's right peeps, I'm writing for my birthday. Bit on the dorkish side, but that is me...Queen Dork. Just ask DH.

I have a hot date today with my laptop and WIP, Fiáin . So very excited about this. It is not everyday I can focus on what I love doing ALLLLL day. Generally there is some mom responsibility, day job responsibility, or wife responsibility. Today is a full fledged ME DAY!

My goal on Nov 1 for my own whacked out version of NaNoWriMo was to cut 50,000 words out of WIP (as requested by editor) and so far I have cut nearly 30,000. Feeling sort of superstarish right now. I know, dorkish relapse. As a green writer I am very proud of this accomplishment and know I can meet my goal. Or I will die trying BY GAWD!!! A little dramatic, yes, but that's what you get with theater background. Tee Hee.

So I will be rocking out to some iHeartRadio for inspiration and plugging away at WIP. Sounds like a fine way to celebrate the day I was born to me!

Happy Writing to you all! Cheers!

November 05, 2011

A work in progress: Fiáin

So I am breaking the rules for NaNoWriMo. I know! Egads woman! Well, too bad. Sometimes you just have to do it. Instead of writing 50,000 words I have opted to edit 50,000 words. This is a HUGE task for me so is certainly a good challenge for the month. Basically I am focusing on trimming my manuscript that I have been working on.

When I originally finished it I submitted it to a group for some developmental evaluation. Being that I do not have a crit group, this was my only other option...paying someone. Now I may not have had to do this, but really, yes I did. See I am not an experienced writer like many folks out there. I have found this side of myself late in life and am just starting out. Many writers I have come in contact with have been writing since they could hold a crayon. Me? Not so much. I started out with the same crayon, but I was known to draw what was in my head, not write it.

When I was small my mother once asked me how I drew what I did. In my best 5 year old wisdom I told her, "You just put a picture in your head and then you put it on paper." My mother, who was not born with any artistic ability thought this fairly profound for a wee child. =^) But that was me. I sketched all the time. When most kids played outside or were part of a cheer squad or something else altogether, I was often lost in my head with my sketch pad. I guess in my own way I told stories with my drawings. Once while talking to a friend on the phone I sketched a girls face with an absolutely bored expression. The "friend" was one of those that only required a well placed 'hmm' or 'uh-huh' to keep talking so the drawing was a rather accurate portrayal of how I felt at the moment. Just don't ever tell my friend that. *giggle*

My family, or rather my father's side of the family, is riddled with artists going back several generations. My grandmother was a phenomenal scenic artist that once had the opportunity to paint for Disney, but eventually turned it down. It was probably her biggest regret. So it is no real surprise that I have the artist bug too. Only my drawing had an abrupt end in high school. Without going into the whole story I will just say if I knew then what I know now I would have told a certain high school art 'teacher' to shove it where the sun don't shine.

But since then I have found pen and paper, or more accurately, laptop and MS Word. *grin* My manuscript, currently titled Fiáin, is word heavy. Like, really word heavy. I need to basically cut the puppy in half to get to a publishable size. Poor DH says, "Why don't you just make it two books?" Well, because not all my words are good ones, dear. I have been cutting scenes that do not need to be there and other bits that really don't go anywhere. My new mantra is 'condense and refine.'

Anyone who is familiar with Inkpop knows they have oodles of writers posting their work for critique and such. I have joined the masses. If interested you can find the first few chapters of Fiáin here. Feel free to take a look and I would love to hear what you think. Keep in mind this is a HUGE work in progress and part of my NaNoWriMo self challenge. If you like it please tell me what you liked (so far). If you didn't like it please tell me what didn't work for you. The mechanics are still shaky for me and I am aware I will need some line editing eventually. =^)