“Use the talents you possess, for the woods would be a very silent
place if no birds sang except the best.”
~ Henry van Dyke, poet~
Gifts for My Writer Friends:
Writers Helping Writers are busy helping writers again with a guest post HERE by Warren Adler with 11 Novelist-Tested Ways to Defeat Writer's Block.
Kristin Lamb has a terrific post on adding tension. Click HERE to get some great tension tips.
Erika Wassall has a great guest post HERE about mastering kid-speak on Kathy Temean’s Writing and Illustrating blog. Check it out.
I have two winners to announce this week. First from my post on Friday, Nov. 7 when I offered an ARC of Leisl's Ocean Rescue by Barbara Krasner, the winner is Patricia Tilton. Patricia blogs at Children's Books Heal and reviews a wide variety of children's book. Click on the title to check out her blog. Last Sunday, I offered an ARC of At Your Service by Jen Malone. Joanne Fritz is the winner of that book. Joanne blogs at My Brain on Books and also reviews middle-grade books. It's worth the trip over there (click on the title) to read the About Me and find out why her blog has such in interesting title. Congratulations, ladies. I will get your books out this week.
I have a couple of books I'd like to recommend. I've read these recently and willbe passing them along in our family reading circle, so won't give them away here. Both are terrific, both deal with young people who have a parent with mental illness, and both are stunning books. The first for middle grade readers -- Nest by Esther Ehrlich -- has a main character, Chirp, who will absolutely steal your heart and leave you wanting the book to go on and on. Don't miss this one. The second -- Crazy by Linda Vigen Phillips -- is a young adult book written in lyrical verse, yet with a great sense of reality and some surprising turns, that is also not to be missed.
This week, I would like to tell you about a book I won from Jennifer Rumberger's blog, which you can find HERE. Jennifer is a writer and features a lot of terrific books, mostly for middle-graders, on her blog. Anyway, I had been hankerin' after a book I'd heard a lot about, Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu, and was lucky enough to win a signed copy from Jennifer. This is a re-told fairy tale, a form I'm falling more and more in love with. But this one may well be the best of the bunch, certainly the most engaging I have read.
Hazel and Jack have been best friends for, well, just about forever -- from the time they were six. Now eleven, they are still best friends until suddenly andinexplicably they are not. Jack stops speaking to Hazel, then disappears into the woods. Jack's heart has been frozen and he has been led away by a woman all in white. She has taken him to her ice palace. Hazel must leave everything she knows and venture after Jack to save him. Will either of them survive this harrowing journey? How will it change them?
Ursu has written an amazing story that is gripping, heart-wrenching, and brilliant. It is based on Hans Christian Anderson's The Snow Queen, but as Hazel goes on her way, Ursu weaves in many other of Anderson's tales.This is a story of friendship, love, and heroism. It is a coming-of-age story as well. I can't say enough good things about this book. Find it. Read it. Soon.
It's hard for me to give this one way, but for a couple of reasons I will. First, I
want to share it; it deserves to be shared. Secondly, I know I won't have time to re-read it although I wish I had that time. It's lovely. So, I am offering this signed copy to one of you. All you need do is have a
US address, be a subscriber or follower and tell me that in a comment
you leave on this post. If you are reading this in your email, click
HERE to go to the blog so you can leave a comment. If you would like
extra chances, please spread the word by posting the link on a Tweet,
blog post, Facebook, or any other way you like. Let me know what you
have done in your comment, and I will put in extra chances for you for
each that you do.
Don't forget to check out Shannon Messenger's wonderful blog HERE for many more Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday reviews and giveaways.