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Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Review: You Can't Shatter Me

Title: You Can't Shatter Me
Author: Tahlia Newland
Release date: June 2012 (Paperback, mid August)
Rating: 4.5/5
Publisher: Catapult Press
Book Summary:
Sixteen-year-old Carly wants to be a superhero, but when she stands up to a bully, he turns on her. Words fly, and Carly battles with a silver hook, a giant thistle, a doubt dragon and a suffocating closet. Dylan, a karate-trained nerd who supports her stand, turns out to be a secret admirer, and while he struggles to control his inner caveman, Carly searches for her own way to stop the bully.  An old hippie shows her an inner magic that’ssupposed to make her invincible, but will Carly learn to use it before her knight in shining armour risks all in a battle with a fire-breathing dragon? Or is he the village idiot?

This heart-warming magical realism story will inspire and empower teens and adults alike.
Review:

In this little novella, the reader follows Carly and Dylan through an epic journey of good vs. evil, handwritten scripts and the thought that life can be written the way a person wants it to be written.

Ever since I first picked up a book, I've thought changing point of views were a really awesome way of conveying a story. Whether it be changing points of view in third-person or it be changing points of view in first person, I liked the idea that a reader could see into the thoughts of multiple characters in the story instead of one. It really suited this novella very nicely. Looking through Carly's eyes as well as Dylan's helped make the world that they were living in.

I enjoyed the fact that it was edited "according to Australian conventions" and that it took place in Australia. My best friend is from Australia so I was able to connect some things together from her first trip over there this summer. It was different and I really enjoyed it.

Also--note to the author if you do read this-- thank you for putting the glossary of words in the front. It really helped me understand some of the lingo.

The only problem point that I would have for this whole thing is the areas that were meant to be symbolic. I understood them, and I get them. I liked them very much. Then they stretched over the chapters and it started losing that feeling on me. I feel like they took too much away from the situation as they stretched out. What started as words attacking turned into a battle with a sword. I understood it, but it could have been shortened just a teensy bit.

Overall, I loved the story, the plot, and the message it gave out. The characters were strong and readers could really relate to them. I liked the moments of "writing" that Carly had and the moments of "script editing" that Dylan had. It all made the story and I really liked it.

Thank you, Tahlia! I would like to hear more from you soon!
M.A.Chase

Friday, August 3, 2012

The Color Purple and other things

So, for school the assigned The Color Purple and I don't think I've ever read this book so hard in my life. . .

It's not that it's hard to understand what's going on it's the fact that the language is very difficult to understand. . .

I don't know.

Maybe it gets easier to read, but so far. Not so much.

On the other hand, my WIP is doing really good. I'm doing two rounds of editing at once (one to add description and a follow up to make sure it all makes sense). I can't wait to get this all done with so I can start emailing agents and trying to get my book published! That's going to be really exciting. Can you imagine that?

In another note, I made a really pretty signature for my blog! I didn't know how to do it before, but then my mom asked me to do it for her teacher blog and I figured it out! It's at the end of this post so just scroll down so you can read it. :D

I still haven't finished the Sun of Neptune by Rick Riordan. I'm almost done, I've just been forgetting, or I've been busy editing, or I was distracted by something else; like summer reading, for instance.

Well, that's all I've got.

Ciao!
M.A.Chase

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Love Triangle NO-NOS

Hello, hola, bonjour, buenos dias!

You know the one thing that irks me sometimes while I'm reading a book? Really bad love triangles. Those ones where the whole book plays out like this:

Girl Main Character: I love you Boy Main Character 1.

Boy MC1: I love you too GMC.

Boy MC2: I love her a lot more than you do.

BMC1: Oh yeah? You wanna fight for that?

BMC2: Let's go!

BMC1 and BMC2 begin to tussel while GMC is watching

GMC: I love BMC1 and BMC2 is my best friend. What is this sudden feeling? A LOVE FOR MY BEST FRIEND?!?! OH MY GOSH. WHICH DO I CHOSE?!?!?!??!?!

Me: . . . No.

There are better ways to present a love triangle without making it cheesy and annoying and your readers get to a point where they hate the main characters and want them to die. . . okay. That might have been a really strong word there. . . Want them to disappear. That's better.

*cough*

Anyway, I can't believe I'm  going to say this. . .

Twilight had a pretty good love triangle. I'm not saying the books were amazing (because frankly, they're not the best), but the love triangle with Bella, Jacob, and Edward was presented decently. Why do I say that? Let's pick apart the love triangle!

The Girl

Bella wasn't completely annoying (other than the fact that the whole book she was asking Edward to bite her . . .) in the sense that she wasn't jumping back and forth between Edward and Jacob the whole time. She knew who she wanted to be with and she made that clear.

The Boys

More like a teenage wolf and a forty million year old vampire, but whatever! You get what I'm talking about.

Edward and Jacob weren't best friends to begin with. In fact, they were already enemies that wanted to rip each other's throats out so that helps with the love triangle. When Edward and Bella started dating, Jacob didn't come around all the time making the moves on Bella. It was only after he found the opportunity to snatch her from Edward did Jacob even try to do anything.

Jacob loves her enough that he doesn't sit around trying to steal her when Edward comes back. Yes, Jacob does get extremely pissed only because of what Edward put her through only to come around showing his face to the same girl he almost killed multiple times. . .

They also decide to work things out instead of having a feud for the rest of their lives that tears the poor girl apart. Again it doesn't work out like this:

BMC1: I don't want you around him anymore. He's not good for you, yada yada yada.

GMC: But I love him. He's my best friend, yada yada yada.

BMC2: Let her do what she wants. You don't control her life.

BMC1: You don't control her either. She can hang around me all she wants.

BMC1 and 2 begin to tussel while GMC watches

GMC: WHICH DO I CHOSE? I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO. I LOVE BMC1, BUT BMC2 IS MY BEST FRIEND IN THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD I CAN'T ABANDON HIM.

Inserts dramatic happening to GMC that makes BMC1 and BMC2 best friends forever and they live happily ever after.

Me: . . . No.

It wouldn't happen like that in real life!



Look at The Hunger Games.  That had an amazing love triangle. Katniss struggled between both, but Collins didn't make it sound annoying or make you want to through the book in a fire and watch it slowly burn because you can't handle the girl fretting over the boys.

Katniss did struggle, but it was a more realistic struggle between her best friend and the boy with the bread.

That's it.

There was jealousy, but never was there any random fighting between the two boys. The two boys were never even friends. There were no dramatic happenings that made them come together and sing Kumbaya. They were jealous of each other and they both hated the other. That never turned into anything physical. No confrontations. No problems.

I hope this helps the world become a better place when the horrible love triangles are written better and don't have whiny GMCs. That's all.

(Photos courtesy of Google Images)
~M.A.Chase♥