MOTH TO THE FLAME (A Crime Thriller Script Book)
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If you want to recommend others, please do so in the Comments section at the end of this post. Sykes Pegasus. Tracy Crooked Lane. Johnson Poisoned Pen Press. Eberhart American Mystery Classics. Easley Poisoned Pen Press. Gertcher Wind Grass Hill. Logan St. Benn Soho Crime. Hill Head of Zeus. Trow Creme de la Crime. Cross Severn House. Douglas MCP. Malone Orenda. Denzil Bookouture. Alvey Orion. King Bay.
Dobbyn Oceanview. Monaghan C. Ryan Arcade. Abson Mirror. Banner Lake Union. Rhoades Polis. Ellis Agora. Wilson Harper. Longworth Penguin. Redmann Bold Strokes. James Crooked Lane. Golakai Cassava Republic Press. Green Severn House. Holliday Orenda. Cross Orion. Beaton Minotaur. It is almost like four novellas, pieced together eventually. I adored the excerpt from the map-making of Whitton-Whyte and the twist delighted this little sci-fi fan. The characters were well rounded and real. Perhaps it was the slight weirdness of the world.
It was familiar and yet intriguing. There was little time spent world building, the story jumps right in and explains the world as we go. Yet there are enough odd little details to remind the reader that this is not your ordinary Tom Clancy thriller. Perhaps it was the wry English humour. The dialogue was sharp and believable. I chuckled out aloud a number of times.
Deborah Goodrich Royce
But the topic of genre provoked the most thought for me. This is classified as a science fiction novel — which it is. The world is futuristic, but only looking a few years into a possible future. I was so curious about the genre of this novel, I contacted the author.
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I had a nice conversation with Dave Hutchinson over Twitter regarding the genre classification of this book. This is a very apt description. Anyway less about me and more about Europe in Autumn. If you like a well built near-future world with espionage, great characters and good writing, I recommend you take a look at Europe in Autumn. On September 23, In book review , characters , children's books , reading , world building. She takes the long journey by carriage through the night with her bilious governess and Wiggins, her grumpy spoiled spaniel.
Her new home is mysterious, mythic and magical. Her uncle tells tales of the tragic love story of the Moon Princess and Sir Wrolf, the first Merryweather, and of course the rarely seen little white horse. Firstly it must be said, this book should be mandatory reading for anyone interested in glorious world-building. The descriptions of Moonacre Manor and its characters are vibrant and rich.
From cosy cave houses and circular bedrooms in towers to a curmedgeonly dwarf with a rich vocabulary baking fairy cakes and lavish descriptions of hearty country meals very reminiscent of Enid Blyton to a cat that can write and the grumpy spoiled Wiggins, the spaniel. But the story itself is a little strange.
The haughty Maria bullies her family both immediate and estranged into complying with her wishes. All the while maintaining a relationship with a shepherd boy which no one questions. And this is supposedly Reality aside, she is a firebrand who gets what she wants. A feisty female protagonist. But the pleasure in this book is the imaginative world-building.
If you are interested in descriptions or characterisation, I urge you read this book. Especially the first few chapters as Maria explores her new home. On September 20, I thoroughly enjoyed the story of the alien host and her human servants. Although reading the end notes, I jumped to the conclusion like many others that it was a story about slavery. Apparently not! In Parable of the Sower, Lauren is 17 and lives in a neighbourhood compound in post-apocalyptic Los Angeles.
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Her father is the local preacher and community leader where the neighbours band together to keep themselves safe from the dangers outside the walls. The outside world is dangerous, filled with drug addicts who revel in fire. Over time her thoughts formulate in her mind, she is creating her own religion.
It is called Earthseed. All the while, building on her ideas for a new faith. As an aspirant writer, this is one of those books that made me want to put my pen down and give it all away.
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The prose so crisp and precise. The concepts so big and mind-chewing. This is what I want to be when I grow up. The Parable of the Sower passage from the Bible has no meaning to me. I brought no preconceived ideas when I started reading. With the chaos around her, Lauren sees God as objective. God is change and cares only about survival. There is no moral overlay about right or wrong. It just is. Another book which wowed me. I was struck by a single line. Awe inspiring and all powerful.
But like Lauren, I never placed the moral overlay on nature. She only wants to continue on. This book has stayed with me for months now. What more can you ask for in a book?
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On August 4, In book review , characters , children's books , reading. Blog posts have been a little tardy. But funny how your memory plays tricks on you. Super Fudge. Then of course Are You There God?
The quintessential book on growing up. Margaret has a new school, new friends and new womanly body to manage. I expected it to be full of female body stuff. A fiction version of Everygirl. But on re-reading, I was surprised to discover that puberty is only one part of the story. Is she Jewish or is she Christian? Who is this God she speaks to?
Like Margaret, I grew up without religion, but I never went through a religious curiosity phase like she does. Margaret chooses to explore religion as the topic of her year long school project. Or I blocked it out and focused on the juicy stuff. AYTGIMM was probably the first time I read about someone like me, dealing with their newly adult bits, bras and periods, secret clubs and talking on the phone for hours about very important nothing. Did we get the idea from this book?
It brought back memories of my own experiences of being eleven. Laura Danker is a tragic innocent character. The puberty stuff is of no interest anymore and neither is the religious angle. Just not for me. On July 2, In book review , children's books , reading. The next book in my series of revisiting childhood favourites is Anne of Green Gables by L.
Ah the memories…when I opened the first few pages of Anne of Green Gables, I was transported back to Grade 5 and my small primary school library in Launceston, Tasmania where I first borrowed this book. All the iconic phrases made me smile; the puffed sleeves, the alabaster brow, kindred spirits, bosom friends. I can see why people travel to Prince Edward Island today to see where Anne lived. The brother and sister really wanted a boy to help with the farm work but instead Anne arrives, filled with wild imaginative romantic notions and who cannot stop talking. Reading Anne of Green Gables again was an absolute joy.
I had forgotten what a wonderful character she is, so quirky and irrepressible. Despite her terrible childhood prior to moving to Avonlea, Anne is optimistic. An uneducated orphan, she built a fertile imagination to cope. She stands up for herself and others if she feels she is being mistreated. There is no doubting why this is an absolute classic, Anne is such an endearing character who leaps off the page. We see Anne mature, and to some extent, conform. Towards the end of the book, where Anne buckles down to study hard for her examinations, I missed the quirky, nutty, overly emotive Anne.
She makes tough decisions in the end, particularly hard decisions for a sixteen year old. Compared to the Blyton boarding school books where the characters are of similar ages, Anne grows up and makes adult decisions, unlike the protected girls from St. Side note — Were 17 year olds really teaching school in Canada in the early 20 th century? Like Blyton, there are very few men in Anne of Green Gables too. Only the man-of-few-words Matthew and her number one rival, Gilbert Blythe. Anne is surrounded by strong, opinionated and capable women.
From a structural perspective, I wondered whether this book was originally a serial. The structure is very episodic, with 10 page self-contained chapters, perfect for a quick minute read before bed or perhaps designed for reading to children. Maybe in ? All in all, Anne of Green Gables stands up as a wonderful read and truly worthy of its classic status.
Get ready for the real side of blossoming womanhood. On June 18, Good old Aunty Enid is the grand dame of influences. The Famous Five probably whet my appetite for mysteries and I also remember the 70s telly series fondly. Maybe I need some therapy to understand why. I longed to go to boarding school and devoured all of these books. The words and the character were so familiar. How many times had I read this before? I giggled along at the quintessentially British language and the tropes. And this is exactly what I remember about being a tweenie. This is a moral tale for playing by the rules and conforming.
Margery is the sullen outsider who redeems herself and teaches the twins a lesson about assumptions. I was surprised how old the girls were fourteen to sixteen. The girls at St. Aside from their fathers and one mention of a gardener, there are no men in the world of St. Is that what Blyton was trying to do? Create a series of books to teach young women the right way to behave in WW2 Britain? But if Aunty Enid can do it…? When I finished the last page and said goodbye to my old friends, my feelings on boarding school have changed.
Fruit cake! Chocolate eclairs! On June 12, In book review , reading , women in fiction.
Why not re-read all five books and review them with adult eyes. On April 21, In book review , reading , writing tips. The Story Grid book soon to be released is a story design system and a step-by-step process for analysing and improving your writing. It teaches you to be your own editor. Definitely one for process-minded, plotter, spreadsheet nerds like me. While reading, I had one eye firmly on the Story Grid system, looking for the tips and structure outlined by Coyne. Luckily, The Profession is also a cracking read. The Profession is set in the near future, following the story of Gent, a soldier for hire.
The Middle East is a mess of corporations, tribal war lords and nation-states, all vying for supremacy and protecting their interests by hiring mercenaries. I am a warrior. What I narrate in these pages is between me and other warriors. I will say things only they will credit and only they understand. Gent works for a disgraced US General, Salter. His devotion to Salter is absolute. Now, on the face of it, this is a book for blokes. Loads of description about guns and bombs and helicopters. Information I skipped over. Yet underneath the testosterone, there is something epic about this story, something mythic.
It resonated. Is it based on a myth or is it completely original? It felt bigger than just blowing stuff up. Back to the Story Grid, I flicked backwards and forwards between reading this for pleasure and looking for the elements of the Grid in it. One of the key elements of the Story Grid is internal and external value at stake. How the character changes through the story and how inner conflict and external conflict play out.
I recommend The Profession for an intelligent, fast paced read and for writers, I recommend the Story Grid. On March 28, In book review , characters , inspiration , my tips , women in fiction. Last week last century in internet terms , the hot trending hashtag was womeninfiction. Everyone chiming in with their favourite female characters. Harriet M. But her inquisitive ways, her bravery and her love of tomato sandwiches stuck with me to this day! A powerful messed-up character, who you cheer for, cringe with and cry for. Smart, stupid and stubborn.
The only female character here written by a man. I went through ten years of avid crime reading. Then one day I woke up and seemed to have moved on. One of my earliest reads and loves was VI Warshaswki. Super exciting post script — Sara Paretsky tweeted me back to thank me for my nomination. On March 27, In book review , characters , historical fiction , reading.
A commenter described Merivel perfectly. A bumbling, pompous, foppish buffoon of a man. But also completely hilarious. I was not expecting such a funny book. I laughed along with Merivel with his complete lack of self awareness and self-obsession. By happenstance, he meets a wealthy Swiss aristocratic botanist and follows her back to her mansion in Paris to become her plaything until the husband comes home. On the way, he saves a bear from death and transports it back to Norwich. A character I will not forget. On March 14, The Dark Monk by Oliver Potzsch is a cracking fun read, filled with action and fight scenes.
Plus I learned some stuff about 17th century hangmen. The Dark Monk is set during a particularly grim winter in Bavaria. The local foppish medic, Simon, is assisting his father to cure an outbreak of influenza, while the local hangman Jacob is dealing with highwaymen. The local church is under renovations and the opening scene finds the death of the parish priest. Prior to his death, he sent a mysterious letter to his sister. He had made a discovery in the renovations.
What has he found? Why are there three monks in dark habits roaming around? But what I found most compelling was the detail of the background of 17th century rural Germany and the role of the local hangman in the community, as both the executioner and local healer. This was all new fascinating information to me.
All in all, I can recommend The Dark Monk for people who like fast paced mysteries with some education on the side. On March 2, In book review , imagination fuel , inspiration , reading , scifi-fantasy , world building. After finishing Sunne in Splendour , I opened and closed three or four other novels before I found something which grabbed my attention. The difficulty here is how to even describe this amazing novel.
Highly imaginative with densely detailed world building, cinematic although I challenge anyone to adapt to a live action movie!