Showing posts with label debut author. Show all posts
Showing posts with label debut author. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Review of The Body Institute by Carol Riggs

If only I could wake up tomorrow looking as healthy as I did a couple of decades ago... 

I struggle with my weight, so the premise of this book seems like a dream come true—letting a fit person do the work for me, returning my body to me fit and trim! I promise I would keep it that way!

This storyline is so original. How I wish I could have an athlete slide into my body and get it in shape for me, without me having to do any of the dieting and exercise! That is the objective of The Body Institute. A technological breakthrough allows brain swapping for the purpose of losing weight in a society whose health care system punishes the out-of-shape. I don’t know what I’d do if I had to pay tax penalties for every pound of extra weight I carry. Of course, it wouldn’t be much of a story if that was all there was to it. But there’s always room for conspiracy.

Though I prefer adult suspense over YA, this debut novel kept me interested. Just when I thought I knew what was going to happen, the story took an unexpected turn. So many times I thought, “Wow. I didn’t see that coming.” I really enjoy a book that makes me think what if…? And this book does just that. 

In a world full of body-shaming and bullying, the main character of this book gets to experience what it’s like for someone overweight to live in a health-conscious society. There are also many opportunities to reflect on moral values and ethics as they relate to advances in science. This story forces you to think about where the line should be drawn.

Riggs does a great job of painting a futuristic automated world not far from our own—aside from the brain swapping thing—with just a hint of Orwell’s 1984. The story is entertaining and very well written. Riggs adds just enough technical jargon to make the science believable. The main character, teenager Morgan Dey, is delightful. She is willing to take on the risks associated with being a reducer to help her family pay off their debt—even when it might mean risking her own life.

This was a really fun book to read. Have you read any fun sci-fi lately?

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Peeking at the Process with a Debut Author

I've had a delightful experience I want to share with you...
watching the birth of a book up close and personal.

It started here, with my blog.
I follow some blogs just for entertainment.
I follow some blogs that are authors-agents-editors' blogs, 
hoping to glean valuable tips to help me in my own journey.
I follow a lot of writers that are where I am, hammering out that first manuscript.
And I follow some seeking publication with one or more finished books.

Terri Tiffany was in the last group.

 Terri has been published more times than I can count as a contributing author,
with several stories in the Chicken Soup books, as well as other inspirational collections.
She is a seasoned writer, but had to wait patiently for that first novel to be grabbed up.

Through following and commenting on our respective blogs,
Terri and I became friends.
One day she asked me if I would be interested
 in reading a chapter of a book she had written, 
and giving her some feedback. 
I eagerly said yes!

In June of 2012, I read the first chapter of a manuscript she called The Mulligan.

The story is quite unique.
The MC is a young girl who decides to go to golf school
to keep her family from falling apart.
What? You say you just read a book about the same thing?
I didn't think so.

In April of 2013, she sent me some revised sections.

And on it went...

We've exchanged a lot of emails since that first chapter.
She has shared a lot of her frustrations,
as well as highs, in the process of publication.

(I think I drove her a little crazy when it came to knowing the actual publication date.)

She had the patience of Job.
I didn't.
I don't know how many ways I can ask,
" you have that date yet?"

I would have been sending emails.
I would have been calling.
But she waited.
And trusted.
And waited.

I've learned a lot through Terri,
but the thing that stands out right now is
that getting published takes a lot of patience.
And talent.
And work.
And perseverance.

Our teen pastor recently spoke about what decides where you end up...
"Direction--not determination--decides you destination."
Although, I think determination can help quite a bit,
we can want something will all our heart,
but if we don't take steps in the right direction,
we will not reach our desired destination.

Terri is a perfect example of someone who kept facing the right direction.
She never lost sight of her goal.
Despite rejections, she kept trying.

So now, I want to officially say...

February 6, 2015
(I know...I'm a little late.)

I really owe a lot to Terri Tiffany.
She has lit the proverbial fire under me!
She not only encourages me,
but she challenges me.

I recently had the privilege of meeting her!
Yes! Face-to-face!

This photo doesn't do her justice. She is beautiful inside and out.
Hubby and I drove all the way down south to have dinner with her and her husband.
Yes, we drove 1500 miles just for dinner!
(Okay, maybe we were on vacation.)
We ended up spending several hours talking.
It was like we had known each other for years.
I guess we have.

Here comes another good part...
Terri gave me an autographed
copy of The Mulligan!

Of course, I already bought
 the eBook when it released.

But there's something
really special about having
an author hand you
their paperback.

Congratulations, Terri.
Published Author
The Mulligan

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Broadening My Horizons Part 2 - Review of The Preacher's Bride

In a prior post, I told you that I gave my oldest grand two autographed books for Christmas.  Even though neither book was the usual genre (contemporary fiction) I read, I was anxious to read these debut works of authors I follow here on Blogger.

In my first post of Broadening My Horizons, I reviewed Paranormalcy by Kiersten White.  I had to wait to get hold of the other book.  

Last night, I borrowed Dani's copy of The Preacher's Bride by Jody Hedlund. Tonight, I finished it.  I couldn't put it down!  

The story takes place within a group of Puritans as they are engaged in a struggle against the Anglican Church. Elizabeth Whitbread is thrown into the life of John Costin, a Puritan preacher, when his wife suddenly passes from this world, leaving John with four children to tend, including a newborn son not likely to survive.  Elizabeth's personal fortitude and her passion to do God's will leads her to ruffle the feathers of the community leaders in order to save the life of this tiny baby. She is then persuaded to become a housekeeper to the widower, despite his protests.

As John faces pressure from the Anglican Church, and threats from a man with a grudge against the Puritan evangelist, John and Elizabeth's faith is put to the test.

This book is a true page-turner, lacking the gaps that can weigh down an otherwise good story.  Jody's character development is sensational.  Not only were the main characters rich with personality, the secondary characters were just as full of life.  I truly felt like I knew these people.  I could smell, hear, feel...  Jody accomplished the task of painting a picture of the times.  Her writing not only took me into the story, it took me into the age.

I truly look forward to more books from this author.  I definitely recommend this one for the nightstand.  Two thumbs up.
 (Click HERE to read Jody's post on the initial reviews.)