Sunday, 29 November 2015

Blog Moving

Hello everyone,

I know it's been awhile, but I've been working on my book, Prophecy, which will be available on Amazon next week!! I can hardly believe it.
Also, I am shutting down this blog and am moving everything over to my new site:, so you can come and stay in touch with me there.

Monday, 12 October 2015


So far, I've had a fruitful morning of procrastination while "working" on my novel. I've made a word cloud of the book:

Word cloud made with WordItOut

And I've also made a meme with a quote from the book:
 Will get to some actual proofreading soon...

Sunday, 11 October 2015

Prophecy is Almost Here

I am happy to announce that Prophecy is almost ready to be published!!!! Prophecy is book one in the Antigone: The True Story series, a young adult mythological fiction. I'm almost done editing and am working on all of the millions of details that need to happen in order to actually publish the book -- formatting, back cover text, deciding to go KDP Select or not, getting ISBN's, .... The list gets longer the more I think about it.

Here is a draft of my back cover copy to give you a taste of what the book is about:
Sixteen year old Princess Antigone, daughter of the infamous ancient Greek king, Oedipus, wants to lead a normal life and serve the gods, her city, and her family, but finds that fate has other plans. The Olympian gods bless her, the snakes talk to her, her parents want her to marry a foreign prince, her embroidery looks like burial shrouds for dogs, and she has fallen in love with the wrong boy.

When the mysterious prophecies surrounding her family are revealed, Antigone must choose where her allegiance lies -- with the gods who have betrayed her family but who she is obliged to serve? With her plague ridden city? With her family which lay in ruins? Or even with herself?

In Prophecy, book one of the Antigone: The True Story series, honour and scandal collide and the truth of history is far stranger than the fiction of myth.

Finally, if you want to be the first to hear when Prophecy is out, you can join my email list (I promise not to spam you or share your information):

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Friday, 3 April 2015

Book Review: The Eye of Odin by Dennis Staginnus

The Eye of OdinThe Eye of Odin by Dennis Staginnus
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

On probation for burglary, disliked by everyone at school, and with no memory of his past, fifteen-year-old Grayle Rowen thought his life couldn’t suck more than it already did. He was wrong—it was about to get worse. Much worse.

While on a field trip to the Vancouver Museum, Grayle is forced to steal a Viking runestone from the museum’s newest exhibit. Should’ve been an easy job, especially for a master thief like Grayle. What he didn’t expect was another student, Sarah Finn, tagging along, or the Viking goddess of death showing up to steal the same artifact.

Now in a fight for their lives, Grayle and Sarah learn the runestone is one of five markers describing the whereabouts of the Eye of Odin, a mystical orb said to give its owner infinite knowledge of the past, present, and future. Though Grayle would love nothing more than to ditch Sarah, he knows he’ll have little hope of finding the Eye and unlocking his mysterious past without her.

Dodging Hel-hounds, Frost Giants, and a cannibal Hex, the two teenagers race from Canada to the frozen reaches of Norway in an effort to recover the remaining runestones. The stakes are clear: find the markers in time and save the world. Fail, and the Viking goddess will use the Eye to destroy mankind.

I had so much fun reading this book and could hardly put it down -- it was incredibly engaging, fast paced, and well written. I love how the author seamlessly blended the real and the mythological worlds and had obviously done his research.

Each of the protagonists, Sarah and Grayle, were well developed and interesting. Each has an air of mystery about them that makes me want to know more and anxious for the next book so I can see how things turn out for them.

This is an action packed book filled with imagination that will appeal to both boys and girls from upper middle grade to young adult, especially those who like Rick Riordan or books involving magic and mythology.

View all my reviews

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Book Review: Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Among the Hidden (Shadow Children, #1)Among the Hidden (Shadow Children #1) by Margaret Peterson Haddix

SHADOW CHILDREN Luke has never been to school. He's never had a birthday party, or gone to a friend's house for an overnight. In fact, Luke has never had a friend.

Luke is one of the shadow children, a third child forbidden by the Population Police. He's lived his entire life in hiding, and now, with a new housing development replacing the woods next to his family's farm, he is no longer even allowed to go outside.

Then, one day Luke sees a girl's face in the window of a house where he knows two other children already live. Finally, he's met a shadow child like himself. Jen is willing to risk everything to come out of the shadows -- does Luke dare to become involved in her dangerous plan? Can he afford "not" to?

This is the first in an intriguing series that takes place in a dystopian future where it is illegal to have more than two children. The third children are called shadow children, and they and their families are at risk of being punished with death if they are found out.

This is an excellent start to this series. I really felt for Luke, the main character, as he was placed in moral dilemmas. His fear and frustration and confusion were palpable as he tried to figure out his life and the risks he could take without hurting his family.

I also like how the author is clearly setting up something bigger, as well as touching on interesting subjects such as power and control, food security, class structure, propaganda, and freedom.

The book is also quite short and fast paced, which will appeal to even reluctant readers, both boys and girls. I think the age range is pretty broad too, though some of the content could be scary; for example, just the idea that shadow children would be put to death by the government.

View all my reviews

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Book Review: Missing You by Harlan Coben

Missing YouMissing You by Harlan Coben

It's a profile, like all the others on the online dating site. But as NYPD Detective Kat Donovan focuses on the accompanying picture, she feels her whole world explode, as emotions she’s ignored for decades come crashing down on her. Staring back at her is her ex-fiancé Jeff, the man who shattered her heart—and who she hasn’t seen in 18 years.

Kat feels a spark, wondering if this might be the moment when past tragedies recede and a new world opens up to her. But when she reaches out to the man in the profile, her reawakened hope quickly darkens into suspicion and then terror as an unspeakable conspiracy comes to light, in which monsters prey upon the most vulnerable.

As the body count mounts and Kat's hope for a second chance with Jeff grows more and more elusive, she is consumed by an investigation that challenges her feelings about everyone she ever loved—her former fiancé, her mother, and even her father, whose cruel murder so long ago has never been fully explained. With lives on the line, including her own, Kat must venture deeper into the darkness than she ever has before, and discover if she has the strength to survive what she finds there.

This is the first Harlan Coben novel I've read and I understand that he is wildly popular. However, I was disappointed in this book.

I did like the main character, Kat, and I enjoyed the mystery of the book. But there were a great many characters and subplots in the book as well. I could see how they all eventually came together and I do enjoy that in a novel. Still, Missing You took a long time to really get going. It felt like the first half of the book was spent setting up the various plots and subplots, and introducing characters, to the point where I would have put it down if it hadn't been for the author's reputation.

The second half of the book moved way more quickly and was way more suspenseful.

Overall, there was something disjointed about the book. It had a good premise, but the descriptions were repetitive and it was hard to get in to.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Book Review: In The Woods by Tana French

In the Woods (Dublin Murder Squad, #1)In the Woods Dublin Murder Squad #1) by Tana French

Dublin 1984 dusk, three children vanish in the woods. One, Rob Ryan, grips a tree trunk in terror, unable to recall any detail of previous hours. Twenty years later, the detective on the Dublin Murder Squad keeps his past a secret. But when a girl 12 is killed in the same woods, Rob and Detective Cassie Maddox — partner and best pal - investigate present and past.

I really wanted to like this book -- the premise sounded great -- the idea of two murders somehow connected but years apart. And the writing was really good, full of rich description and beautiful phrasing. The author obviously did lots of research and made interesting characters.

Despite all of this, I found this book hard to get into, and by half way through, I stopped caring about the characters. It was disappointing. I kept reading because I really wanted to see how the whole situation was resolved.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Book Review: Island of Silence by Lisa McMann

Island of Silence (Unwanteds, #2)Island of Silence, book #2 of the Unwanteds, by Lisa McMann

Second book in the phenomenal middle grade dystopian fantasy series, Unwanteds by New York Times bestselling author Lisa McMann.

THE UNWANTEDS Book Two: Island of Silence (from the book jacket)

The battle is over. The magical barrier between the dreary land of Quill and the fantastical world of Artimé is gone. Now residents of both places are free to mingle, but tensions are high. The artistic warriors of Artimé struggle to forgive those in Quill who condemned them to death, while the Quillens attempt to recover from the shock of Artime’s existence, the loss of their leader, and the total collapse of their safe, orderly world.

14-year-old Alex Stowe has recovered from his physical wounds since his death-defying role in Artime’s victory, but his confidence is shattered. He battles self-doubt after Artimé’s beloved mage, Mr. Today, makes a stunning request, which is further complicated by the mysterious arrival of two silent, orange-eyed teenagers.

Meanwhile in Quill, Aaron is devastated by his fall from grace and seething with anger toward his twin brother Alex. Spurred by rage, Aaron recruits a team of Restorers and devises a masterful plan of revenge that will return him to power…if no one gets in his way.

Bestselling author Lisa McMann delivers another trademark page-turner in this second book of The Unwanteds series, as Alex and Aaron's parallel stories ultimately come together for a shocking climax that will leave readers desperate for more.

The Unwanteds is a fun and imaginative series. I loved the first book and the second is a great sequel. However, it did feel like more of a transition book, like it was leading to something bigger in the next book. I did enjoy the characters, especially Alex and his friends, and how they developed. The writing and imagination in the book are, like the last one, compelling.

The pacing goes up and down, but the author did leave us on an exciting note, making us anxious to read the next installment. I'd highly recommend this series to middle grade audiences who like magic and adventure.

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Book Review: Paper Towns

Paper TownsPaper Towns by John Green

Who is the real Margo?

Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs into his life—dressed like a ninja and summoning him for an ingenious campaign of revenge—he follows. After their all-nighter ends, and a new day breaks, Q arrives at school to discover that Margo, always an enigma, has now become a mystery. But Q soon learns that there are clues—and they're for him. Urged down a disconnected path, the closer he gets, the less Q sees the girl he thought he knew...

I enjoy John Green's writing, the quirky characters that he creates tend to pull me in. I like how he takes ideas and explores them, and Paper Towns is no exception. He examines how we see each other, and what it takes to really know another person -- huge topics, and full of teenaged angst.

The actual story is good, and moves at various speeds. I found that I liked the main character, Quentin, and really wanted to see how things would work out for him and see if he would find the real Margot.

Overall, a good young adult read, especially for those who like quirky fiction.

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Book Review: The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe

The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe: A novelThe Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe: A novel by Romain Puértolas

A charmingly exuberant comic debut from an exciting new literary voice,  and a “quirky, hilarious, elegantly written farce” (The Daily Telegraph), The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe is the globetrotting story of a trickster from rural India and his adventure of a lifetime. 

When the fakir—a professional con artist—arrives in Paris, he has just one goal: to get to Ikea. Armed with only a counterfeit hundred-euro note in the pocket of his silk trousers, he is confident that he has all he needs to thrive. But his plan goes horribly awry when he hides inside a wardrobe at the iconic Swedish retailer—the first in a series of accidents that will send him on a whirlwind tour across Europe.

Pursued across the continent by a swindled taxi driver dead set on revenge, our fakir soon finds unlikely friends—from movie stars to illegal immigrants—in even unlikelier places. And, much to his own surprise, his heart begins to open to those around him as he comes to understand the universal desire to seek a better life in an often dangerous world.

Channeling the manic energy of the Marx Brothers and the biting social commentary of Candide, Romain Puértolas has crafted an unforgettable comic romp around Europe that is propelled by laughter, love, and, ultimately, redemption. (Meatballs not included but highly recommended.)

This was a fun and easy to read story full of unlikely events that all come together in an interesting way. The fakir really did have an extraordinary journey, both physically and internally. It was great how these two journey's came together and the commentary attached to them. Puertolas does not shy away from politically charged topics, especially about refugees and immigration, poverty, and even the value of human life.

I enjoyed the writing and the fairly fast paced story. The fakir was a very likable character, and even though he sometimes did unlikable things, I found myself rooting for him.

This book is almost parable like in its simplicity and is able to combine humour and serious topics to make its point effectively.