Monday, January 28, 2013

The Last Runaway by Tracy Chevalier, Dutton, 2013

I do believe, after reading this novel, that any subject in the hands of a skilled writer, can be crafted into an engaging story. Part of the skill is the author’s obvious research and immersion in the subject matter. None of the story elements interested me at all, but I was completely drawn in from the first sentence. Many levels of conflict made a somewhat quiet story a page turner.

Monday, January 21, 2013

“The right book exactly, at the right time.”

Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore: A Novel by Robin Sloan, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012

This book revolved around all things literary, a light-hearted mystery where the clues are books and in books. The underlying theme of the traditional literary world versus (and meets!) the cyber literary world as well as the concepts of legacy and immortality added substance. Even the cover made a statement when I turned off the light and put it on the nightstand. Obviously, ebooks are a significant part of the literary world now, but they don’t have covers that add to the reading experience.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Out With the Old

Well, friends, it is that time again. Resolutions, aspirations, and predictions are demanded of us every where we turn. I must admit, though, I'm fresh out of any of the above. I still haven't fulfilled most of my resolutions from 2012, so what is there to make me believe 2013 will be any different?

I've been puzzling over that question for the better part of two weeks. As the new year approached, I wanted to stand up and shout, "Wait! Stop! I'm not finished with 2012 just yet!" If only, I'd had one more week, one more day even, those well-intentioned resolutions would've been more than a faint memory or, worse, a regret.

So my goal for 2013 is to, above all, be realistic. I might not sign a contract on my latest work-in-progress, but I can certainly finish and polish it. I can't change the fact I missed the deadline for the RWA's Golden Heart Awards for 2012 because my hubby was sick, but I can certainly put that romance in the drawer and pull it out again when they open for entries in November. I might not find my daughter enough scholarship money to send her to the out-of-state college she wants to attend, make my spindly nine-year-old son more suitable for POP-Warner football, or cure my husband's cancer in 2013, but I can absolutely support, protect, and create a healthy living environment for them all.

These simple objectives are more attainable than the grand ideas I  had in mind for 2012. They are comprised of simple things I can control, things that deal with my behavior instead of others'. And that is where I believe success lies.

So, in 2013 we can all put away the self-doubt, the guilt, and the anxiety which accompanies our usual resolutions, and return to a simpler way of doing things. I for one vow, above all, to enjoy each day given to me and my family, and if I just happen to achieve something greater, I'll look upon it as a gift.

Happy New Year!

Melissa