Posts in Fiction
An End and a Beginning

Several years ago, when my children were quite small, I found myself dragging through the Advent and Christmas season. What should have been a magical time of year — young children seeing Christmas lights for the first time is the best, you guys, and I was not into it AT ALL — felt instead like a slog through a slush filled, knee high, snowdrift. I needed a change. I needed a new tradition for myself.

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Spoiler Alert: This isn't a Lottery You Want to Win

The Lottery by Shirley Jackson is a strange short story. Told in a somewhat matter of fact, mild mannered way, the tale highlights what can happen if we just accept the “normal way of doing things.” It’s the kind of book which makes you stop and think and then wonder about the rest of the story, the why’s behind the actions of the villagers. Which makes it a great short story.

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Adventurers, Grab a jacket. We're Heading to China and It's Wintertime.

Grace Lin has created a lovely world of Chinese characters, blending a little bit of history with a whole lot of Chinese folktales. The story weaves in and out of the folktales until you delightfully aren’t sure which is which. Characters in the tales take on new meaning as the plot thickens. I tried to guess how it would all turn out, but I was still surprised by the ending.

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This Book Isn't Quite What You'd Expect

With that being said, I still recommend Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine and here’s why: Eleanor is not completely fine. I know, big surprise, but, during her journey to mental health we learn a lot about true friendship, respectful interactions with others, and treating people with kindness. Eleanor’s straightforward approach to life is refreshing and sometimes laugh out loud funny. I’d like to share a cup of tea with her sometime.

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You've GOT to Meet Cricket

Sometimes when I really delight in a book, when I’m basking in the afterglow of a well written novel, I have a harder time reviewing said tome. I seem to run out of descriptive things to say, instead I just gush, “Oh my gosh, you guys, I loved it!” Today I read Smack Dab in the Middle of Maybe and, Oh my gosh, you guys, I loved it! I’ll try to tell you a few reasons why.

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Phew, Sparks are Flying!

“Blazin’” Kate Burns returns home after the tragic death of her wildfire fighting father. Determined to follow in his legacy she joins the Jude County Hotshots. Sparks fly as she reunites with her old flame, Jed. Together they learn a little about trust, a little about love, and a lot about faith as they fight to put out the wildfires raging through Montana.

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Mom! Phineas and Ferb are Making a Book Review!

There are few cartoons that tickle my funny bone more that Phineas and Ferb. The ways they choose to spend their summer vacation — having epic adventures in their backyard and beyond — and the way Candace is always trying to get them in trouble (“Mom! Phineas and Ferb are making a title sequence!”) makes me laugh every time. The icing on the cake? They own a pet platypus. A platypus who is a secret agent.

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What Will You Do If The Lights Go Out?

I’m a sucker for a good post-apocalyptic novel and The Light did not disappoint. The characters faced realistic problems and solved them in (mostly) realistic ways. I enjoyed the relationships that developed, and the reliance on faith and prayer to help guide them. This is the first book in The Light series, and I can see the author is going to have a lot of fun developing the storyline and characters further. I look forward to reading the rest of the books, but maybe I’d better wait until after #30inNovember!

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Grab a Cup of Coffee and Enjoy this Novella

Heaven Shining Through felt like what you would get if you sat down over coffee and asked your grandmother to tell you her life story - in a good way! Joe Siccardi’s novella takes his readers on a trip through Samantha’s life, pausing now and then to get a closer look at some of the scenery. This was a sweet story, and I found myself wishing it was a longer novel-length book so we could really get to know Samantha.

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It's My Party and I'll Read What I Want To

Yes, I am reading another Pride and Prejudice adaptation. It’s my birthday this month and I can read what I want to! (No, seriously, my 40th birthday is THIS week. I know, crazy, right? This seems like a good time to remind you that if I get 30 new email subscribers in November I will be sending out a prize package to someone on my email list. Know a book reader who needs new suggestions? Send them the link to my sign-up.)

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Put This One on Your Christmas List

Jane Austen’s classic novel reimagined in comic book form. When Mrs. Bennet determines to marry off one of her eligible daughters to the newcomers renting a nearby estate, the social order of the neighborhood is turned on its ear. Will any of the four Bennet sisters find love or will they be doomed to a penniless existence because of their pride and others’ prejudice?

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For the Fan of Fractured Fairytales

At our house, fractured fairytales are the soup d’jour. We eat them like candy, and not the weird kinds left over from Halloween, the good candy, you know, like Twix or Dark Milky Way bars or Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. Yum… Candy… Wait, back on track. Fractured fairytales litter our bookshelves and fill our floor space, so it takes quite a bit to impress us.

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