Book Review: Grave Digger

It’s 1875. Cap Cooper is a 12 year old whose mother is pregnant with another child. She is weak and sick. Cap and his dad just want to be able to pay for her medicine, so they pick up a job of grave digging. Not to put bodies into, but to take them out. They are stealing the bodies to sell to medical facilities. It’s good money, for some rather unsavory people. Cap feels bad about it. Then one of the bodies comes back to life! Did he cause that? Does he have some paranormal power? Or was she buried alive?

What are Alpha and Beta Readers?

Writers throw around terms like alpha and beta readers. But really what is that? Why two different groups? Alpha readers Part of the confusion is that there are subtly different definitions depending on who you ask. Some will say that an alpha reader is simply the first people to read it–no other qualifiers. That’s how I defined it for many years. Then I read another description of it which made sense. This definition distinguishes between readers who are writers and readers who are readers. Both types of readers are critically important.

Book Review: Lost and Found

I saw this on NetGalley and snatched it up based solely on the author, Orson Scott Card. After I downloaded it I looked at the description. It actually sounded like an interesting plot idea too. I devoured the book. This ARC is in a kind of rough state, so I half wonder if the cover might change. have another book that is in much better shape and it is not set to release until October of this year. This one comes out in September. Hopefully! Professional Reader Lost and Found by Orson Scott Card First imagine that you can see something lying on the ground like a scrunchy, and just know where the owner is so you can return it. Cool, right? Not for Ezekiel, who was repeatedly accused of stealing the very thing he was returning! Nobody wants to be friends with a thief. So now, he just tries to ignore the things he finds. Beth, a really short high school kid, enters his life, wanting to be his friend, and stubbornly refuses to leave him alone no matter how rude he is to her. Finally a cop comes and asks for his help in finding a little girl. Yeah, AFTER cops spent his whole life accusing him of stealing, NOW they want his help! Right! He learns he is not the only one with micropowers. He is invited to a group of others like him that have pretty useless minor little powers. Like the ability to make someone yawn. So, no, not cool like the X-Men.

Book Review: Girl, Wash Your Face

For over a year I heard buzz about this book, but I didn’t think much of it. The title didn’t exactly describe what the book was about. And this girl on the cover was washing her face with a fire hydrant. I mean how smart could she be? Normal people wash their face in the sink. Then a friend of mine from Instagram recommended a podcast called Rise. I listened to the episode she suggested. The lady made a lot of sense. Then she mentioned something about her book… you guessed it: Girl, Wash Your Face! By Rachel Hollis The author is, shall we say, earthy. The first line of the book is, “I peed my pants.” So, no, not glamorous. The book is an easy read. She writes very conversationally.

Book Review: The Bear and the Nightingale

This book is told in 3rd person omniscient, distant. The effect is that it sounds like someone telling a fairy tale. The prose is filled with delightful adjectives. Stephen King would absolutely hate this story for that reason I think. It made the story feel full of childish wonder. The Bear and the Nightingale By Katherine Arden Narrated by Kathleen Gati At the heart of this story is a battle of belief. Christianity versus the old gods like the domovoi who lives in the oven and protects the house. The vazila who is the spirit of the horses. The Winter King. Death. A creature in the water. An old Oak Tree in the forest. Vasalisa (Vasya) is the main character. She is born to a mother who has the sight and knows that Vasya will be special. She is a wild uncontrollable child who thrives in nature and will not be tamed.

Writing Advice: Write What You Know

“Write what you know.” I’ve heard this attributed to Mark Twain but I’m not sure if this is accurately attributed. If you know more about who first said this, I’d love to hear from you in the comments or email me! The librarian in my is very concerned with giving attribution to the correct people! Many people get frustrated by this piece of advice. I was one of them because I’m a fantasy/sci-fi writer. How can one know about a creature that doesn’t really exist…dragons, unicorns (although maybe they are real, but really good at hiding), and trolls (these do actually appear on the internet all the time, just not in the literal form that I write.) I have a friend that writes about an ICU nurse who turns into an amateur sleuth. As far as I know, she’s never investigated an ACTUAL murder, although she was an ICU nurse. You get the idea right?