Saturday, October 22, 2011
Stolen--Never Going Back the Same
Update 1 on my novel AWAKE...well...there is no update. The query is out to a couple of agents, and I still need to send it out to a lot more, but the promblem is time. How to put time into my day to personalize each query, make sure it meets all the criteria, and get it off.
Update 2 on what I have been reading lately...well...there is no update. I put on facebook a couple of weeks ago that I've been in a reading and writing slump for quite a while. I still have not read any of the spectacular books I took home with me over the some from our school library. They are on the shelf. But, I checked out Pride and Prejudice and Zombies for the first time, and I love the first line, so there´s a start.
No update on any new writing...I haven´t been able to really jump into anything I have started because AWAKE seems unfinished. It is finished, but I feel my work with it is unfinished because my work with it includes getting those query letters out and getting someone to pick it up! But, not to worry because NaNoWriMo is on its way!
So, now something of substance...to kick off my new weekly blog appearances, I shall write a YA book review. Way long overdue, but it´s what I gotta do to get out of my rut.
Stolen by Lucy Christopher
*Note...this is at least for the 16+ teen...based on mature subject matter and the type of story some would consider slightly twisted and uncomfortable when you get down to the core of what is happening to Gemma, the girl who has been stolen.
I picked up this book about 6 months ago, and it is one of the best and last YA books I read before summer got started.
I must admit I choose books based on outside appearances, which includes cover art, title, synopsis, and brief cover excerpts. Terrible, I know, but it has worked for me about 95% of the time. What I am saying is the books don't usually disappoint. And what got me about this book was the excerpt on the back of the book...
"You tilted my head and said something. Everything about you was fuzzy, floating on the fumes. Your beautiful mouth was moving like a caterpillar. I reached out and tried to catch it. You took my fingers in yours. Some part of me understood."
I mean, really, if you love romance, first person point of view, and poetic language, well, there you have it. And guess what? This excerpt was even better on the page--longer and more lyrical.
And then you read the summary inside the jacket and what you just read on the back is now completely jarring:
Book Jacket Opener...
You saw me before I saw you.
A girl: Gemma, at the airport, on her way to a family vacation.
You had that look in your eyes.
A guy: Ty, rugged, tan, too old, oddly familiar, eyes blue as ice.
Like you wanted me.
She steps away. For just a second. He pays for her drink. And drugs it.
Wanted me for a long time.
He takes her, before she even knows what's happening. To sand and heat. To emptiness and isolation. To nowhere. And expects her to love him.
Written as a letter to her captor, this is Gemma's desperate story of survival. Ty has stolen her body. Against every instinct screaming inside her, will he also steal Gemma's heart?
What else can I say? Now, don't think he kidnaps her and all of sudden they are in love and know they are soul mates. It is nothing like that. She is a captive--kept isolated in some barren Australian dessert, in a fortress of sorts that he's built especially for his new life with Gemma.
But,oh, the heat of the desert is all over this book! The lack, the need, the desire for rain--it builds up a desert of tension ranging from rage, to attraction, to escape, to complete want for another person to be your all, your savior, but yet the whole time knowing this is wrong, and none of this "could be, would be so magical" romance is in any way right. I mean, he took her after years of stalking her in secret, drugged her, stuffed her in the trunk, held her down, dragged her around, and placed her somewhere no one would ever think to look and a place probably not even on a map. When she wakes, the first thing infiltrating all her senses is the intense heat--dry, dense, hot all up her body into her nostrils.
OK, I really don't want to focus on plot. I just want you to fall in love with the language! This girl, Lucy Christopher, can write, and Gemma's voice in the letter is so intimate, as if she is addressing it to you.
Stolen is quietly seductive with still being on this side of PG-13. The tension is desert hot and when the rain pours, you know it's gonna pour all over the page!
Your smell of sweat and eucalyptus and dirt filled my nostrils as I put the sweater over my head, the wool scratching at my arms...You took my arm again, grabbing me around the elbow, and led me outside.
The stars were already bright agaisnt the fading gray sky. The moon was a slender fingernail. I let you lead me. We were quiet. The only sounds were my boots, and your bare feet, upon the sand. Far, far away something made a single ghostly howl, like a banshee in the dark.
"Dingo," you whispered.
There were so many thoughts in my head right then, so many emotions. Your hand was close and tight aroung my elbow, guiding me sraight. Some small part of me almost liked it there. I blinked, shaking my head, not wanting to admit it. But it was true, wasn't it? A part of me was starting to accept you. I wondered, if I gave in to that part, if I leaned into you in return, where would it lead?