Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Gay Parents in YA

Kris Asselin is hosting "Where Are the Gay Parents in YA?" this week on her blog, and I'm happy to be part of it! Please visit Kris's blog for her posts this week and links to other blogs (including to my buddy Jon Arntson's) that are participating this week.

I usually don't "review" books, because I just don't think I do them justice as a reviewer. Yes, I am a writer, but for some reason, I cannot eloquently write a review well. Go figure. So here is my take on a book.  Not necessarily a review (though it was excellent in my opinion), but my thoughts on it.

Last week I read PEARL by Jo Knowles as I knew it featured a gay parent. As I started reading the story, I was so into the story that I forgot the reason why I chose this book in the first place: because I wanted to participate in this week's "Where Are the Gay Parents?" Okay, I had also heard it was a great book. But as I was reading the story, the mom has a close friend, and because I was so immersed in the storyline, I didn't realize that the "close friend" was more than that until further into the book (but before the main character realizes it). Jo Knowles wrote this book in first person from teenager, Pearl's (nickname, Bean) point of view. Since Bean didn't realize who this close friend of her mother's really was, neither did I as the reader, because I was inside Bean's head. (The realization that Bean's mother is gay may be considered a spoiler alert, but due to the topic of the blog post, it does need to be addressed here.)

What is the story about? It's about two families: Bean's family and her best friend Henry's family. Both families have secrets of their own. Both families are a bit dysfunctional but in different ways. Bean and her mother don't get along, but not because of her mom's choice of lifestyle. Bean has no idea about that until further into the book, and I really like the way how Bean handles that.

Three reasons I love this book:
1. Love the friendship between Henry and Bean. They are saviors for each other. Plus they are just regular kids. Not a hot vampire. Not the star of the swim team. Just two regular kids.

2. I do like the way the homosexuality is addressed in this book. Even though it is a plot twist, it isn't sensational. The female couple just seem like two people who love and care about each other. Best friends who are lovers, too. Very straight forward.

3. This book was a quick read, and there were many well written relationships within the book: Bean's close relationship with her grandfather, Bean's tumultous relationship with her mother, Bean's friendship with Henry, Bean's relationship with Henry's mom, and of course, Bean's mom and her partner. Each relationship was unique and interesting and added a twist to the story and interesting facets to the plotline.

Do I recommend this book? Yes, very much! Don't forget to stop by Kris's blog for more posts!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Five Easy Questions

with me today at Jill Kemerer's blog! Please stop on by HERE and say "HEY!" :) Thanks for having me, Jill!

Also, rocker Josh Todd tells us his current read at Book Recs of the Rock and Famous today!
Who is Josh Todd you ask? He's the sexay lead singer of Buckcherry. And that man can dance. He also has "Stay Gold" tattooed on his knuckles. And speaking of, The Outsiders and That Was Then, This is Now by S.E. Hinton ebooks were released yesterday! Greasers go digital!

Okay, now check out JT and his bad boy moves.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Random Act of Kindness BLITZ

A smile. An encouraging word. A thoughtful gesture. Each day people interact with us, help, and make our day a bit brighter and full. This is especially true in the Writing Community

Take a second to think about writers you know, like the critique partner who works with you to improve your manuscript. The writing friend who listens, supports and keeps you strong when times are tough. The author who generously offers council, advice and inspiration when asked.

So many people take the time to make us feel special, don't they? They comment on our blogs, re-tweet our posts, chat with us on forums, make us laugh and spit on our keyboard, and wish us Happy Birthday on Facebook.

Kindness ROCKS!

To commemorate the release of their book The Emotion Thesaurus, Becca and Angela at The Bookshelf Muse are hosting a TITANIC Random Act Of Kindness BLITZ. And because I think KINDNESS is contagious, I'm participating too!

**I am randomly picking SHARON MAYHEW, who is so generous and kind to others, and she one of my fab critiquers. Sharon, for my RAOK gift, I'm offering to buy you coffee (or drink) when I finally meet up with you in Iowa one of these days and of course, a critique whenever you need one, Sharon! 

I really appreciate Sharon, who blogs  at Random Thoughts. She is so sweet and is a cheerleader for her writer friends. If you have a minute, please stop in and tell her how awesome she is!**

Do you know someone special that you'd like to randomly acknowledge? Don't be shy--come join us and celebrate! Send them an email, give them a shout out, or show your appreciation in another way. Kindness makes the world go round. :)

Also a big thank you to Shannon O'Donnell! I won a Mirror, Mirror book and a Fandango gift card on her blog last month! Another thank you also to Carrie Harris! I won a critique and signed book at her blog recently, too. You ladies rock!!!

Becca and Angela have a special RAOK gift waiting for you as well, so hop on over to The Bookshelf Muse to pick it up. Congrats, Becca & Angela on your book release!!

Have you ever participated in or been the recipient of a Random Act Of Kindness?  Let me know in the comments!