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Book Review 2

It’s been longer than a month since I did a book review, so I figured it was time to write another one. I’m an eclectic reader and will read anything if it is interesting. I normally do not read memoirs. I don’t know why, maybe because I like fiction better. However, that being said, I have recently read a memoir that I liked.

Lucky Man: A Memoir by Michael J. Fox. Yes, I bought it because he is a celebrity. And I have never read any other celebrity memoir before. So this was a first for me. I bought it because I acknowledge Michael J. Fox’s contribution to making me laugh. I watched Family Ties, and Spin City. I enjoyed his movies. But he is also one of those celebrities that didn’t appear to be a douche. He always seemed to be genuine nice person. I could have been fooled but I don’t think I was. And his book seemed to confirm that.

Michael J. Fox doesn’t pull any punches. He shows us at his worst, when he is hung over, when he makes stupid mistakes and when he is taken in by the ‘Hollywood crazyland’. He shows us at his most vulnerable.

I enjoyed the glimpse of the real Hollywood. I got a glimpse of the inner works of some of my favorite shows without being stupid. I felt the pain of him finding out and could empathize with him. Although different, it still reminded me of my cancer diagnosis. His life is put under a microscope but he doesn’t do it in a whiny manner.

Do I recommend it? Absolutely. If you watched Family Ties or Spin City or Teen Wolf or what was that one movie or series of movies…. What was it? Uh…. Back to the what? Or yeah. The future. Back To The Future. Michael J. Fox uses humor and keeps thing from getting too maudlin. I enjoyed it immensely.

And good luck to Michael J. Fox. We’re behind you, guy!

Stay tuned.

Angela Abderhalden is the author of the Mel Addison Mystery Series and Acquiring Editor for Seventh Wave Books, LLC.

Seventh Wave Books, LLC is looking for authors. Check out the web page: http://www.seventhwavebooks.com


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Book Review (A little late)

Every time I do a book signing or speak at a conference, there is always one question that is asked. What advice do you have for a beginning writer? This is a hard question to answer in a short time. There are so many rules and things that beginning writers need to know. However, I always fall back on one item when asked this question.

Read, read, read.

Read everything you can get your hands on. I mean it. Everything. This serves several purposes. It helps you identify good writing from bad. It helps you learn sentence structure (and we all continually need to learn that). It helps you learn cadence. And it helps you increase your vocabulary. There are lots of other things it does too, but I think you get the picture.

I do have to confess one thing though. I was always told, by experienced authors giving the same advice, to read tons of stuff in the genre that you write. My confession is this… I almost never read anything in my own genre. When I do read mysteries, I tend to read it more as to picking it apart and finding fault with the work. Maybe it’s just me but I read everything I can get my hands on in other genres but not my own. I know its going against all of the advice I received but there you have it.

I especially like to read classical literature. Not that I really enjoy it, although I sometimes do. But it allows me to see how other people in other centuries wrote, but together sentences, created suspense, etc. The main caveat with reading older classics is that you have to realize that back when these were written the people didn’t move at the pace we do today. They didn’t have so many different things tugging at our attentions like we do today. They could actually take the time to explore parts of character interaction that would be quickly edited out by today’s standards. Is that a good thing or a bad thing? I’m unsure since I’ve only grown up in today’s society. I tend to skip exposition in the classics due to the total boringness of how much detail they go into. However, when I’m feeling especially energetic and patient, I will actually analysis how they do it.

With all of that being said, here are some of the best classics that I’ve read recently. (I miss my book groups in Boise, Id. They made me read one classic a month, one mystery a month, and one newer book a month.) These are the classics that I’ve studied… The Mysterious Island by Jules Verne, The Last of the Mohicans by James Fenimore Cooper, The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux, The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling, Silas Marner by George Elliot, anything by Edgar Allen Poe, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, anything by Alexandre Dumas, Dracula by Bram Stoker, and many more. But these will get you started.

I won’t actually do a book review of the above other than to say I’ve read all of them and learned from all of them. So can you.

Stay tuned.

Angela Abderhalden is the author of the Mel Addison Mystery Series and is an Acquiring Editor for Seventh Wave Books, LLC.

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And Now For Something Completely Different…

Yes, I’m a big Monty Python fan. But that being said, I decided that once a month I’m going to do a review of a book I’ve read. I’ll try to only do recent books I’ve read but it depends on a lot of factors (i.e. how much time I’ve had that month). So every fourth Sunday of the month it will be a review.

The Dirty Parts of the Bible by Sam Torode is my pick to start this off. I picked it up on a free sale via Amazon for my Kindle. I really don’t know why I picked it. Something in the name of the title I guess intrigued me I guess.

The plot is set in the 30’s in Michigan through Texas. A seventeen year old boy Tobias Henry comes of age as he is sent on a trip to Texas by his father. His father, a Baptist minister, is blinded in an accident and is about to get kicked out of town so he send Tobias to recover hidden money in an abandoned well in his old homestead in Texas. Tobias must travel from Michigan to Texas by himself. During this epic adventure he meets several colorful characters, including a very likeable character, Craw. Craw teaches Tobias the ways of the hobos. When they reach Texas, more adventures await him including true love.

The book kept my interest which is something because I read in spurts. Ten minutes here, half an hour here, five minutes there. The story had a pretty good pace and the emotional growth of Tobias is as expected, after all it is a coming of age story. I felt that the quick turnaround of the father was a little abrupt and some parts were predicable.

Craw was impressive though. I did find him to be the best of the story. The ending was a little too sweet for me, but not unexpected. Although not one of my all time favorites, it was still a good read and I would recommend it to someone looking for just a little something to enjoy.

Here is the link to Amazon for The Dirty Parts of the Bible. http://www.amazon.com/The-Dirty-Parts-Bible-Novel/dp/1419667394

If you have a recommended book that you would love for me to review, put a comment here and I’ll see what I can do. Stay tuned.

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