Friday, February 19, 2010

From the Bookshelf: Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

I've gotten a serious windfall of books since Christmas time.    Check out all of my new lovelies:


Plus I just scored an ARC copy of Jeanette Walls' Half Broke Horses at my writers' group meeting tonight for answering a book trivia question.  Sweet!  I am having a smidge of anxiety though because -- seriously, when am I going to have time to read all of these?!  

If this were last August, I'd rip through all these bad boys in two weeks, but with Archer and devoting more of my free time to writing I'm thinking it's going to take considerably longer than that.  That's OK though, I'll take my time and enjoy them all.

Here's what I'm in the middle of tearing through right now (thanks to my awesome NBC book exchange elf Crystal who sent this to me):

The prologue got me interested.  France, 1565.  A creepy dark angel appears in a graveyard and extracts an ominous promise from an unsuspecting man.  There is talk of Nephilim, a legendary race of half mortal, half fallen angels.

Sounds good, right?

The first few chapters, however, felt a little too familiar.  Fast forward to present day Maine and meet our heroine, Nora Grey (No relation to Meredith, by the way).  A mysterious, smoldering new guy stares at Nora and makes her feel uncomfortable in Biology.  Nora enjoys driving her beat up old car.  Nora lives with her single parent.  It's rainy and foggy all the time. 

Twilight with angels anyone?  
 The similarities were eye-roll worthy, but apparently not enough to make me stop reading.  It just seems like a shame that an otherwise well written and creative book had to fall back on this formula. 

I'm about halfway through now and I'm officially sucked in.  The author has done a really good job of slowly ratcheting up the tension and it's getting hard to put down.  The dialog is good and I like the characters, especially Nora's sidekick and instigator Vee and her fruit color wheel diet.  I'm intrigued by what's going on with Patch, though I'm not an especially big fan of the name (says the girl who named her main character Malady).  Is he the dangerous stalker in the ski mask or is he Nora's protector?  And what about Elliott?  Gah!

I'll give you my final verdict on this one when I finish.  For now, I've got to get to shut eye so I can get some more reading and writing in tomorrow. 

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Pardon My Dust

Since I'm making a fresh start, I'm giving the old blog a little makeover.  Apparently Stacey and Clinton don't do blogs so I'm on my own here and not so savvy with all of the XML and HTML codes.  Please excuse the mess while I'm experimenting.  

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Remember Me?

Hello. Hello. Hello.
Anybody out there?
Any chance anyone is still reading?
I know, I know. It’s been a while. OK, a long while. OK, so almost a year, but here I am, back with something to say again.

So what have I been up to since you last heard from me? Well, for starters, a little less than a year ago I took a pregnancy test. Two pink lines. I was excited. I scared out of my ever loving mind. And wishing I’d had just one more glass of wine before my nine month hiatus. But anyway, to make a long story short, last November Archer was born and now it’s hard to remember what life was like before him. By the way, I love how we use the passive voice to talk about birth, as if there weren’t 20 hours of labor and 2 hours of pushing involved on the part of his mother.

Part of the reason I kind of stopped blogging was that a lot of my life was consumed by all of the new things that came with pregnancy- praying that I wouldn’t vomit in class, seeing Archer’s heartbeat for the first time, trying to find shoes that would fit my swollen Shrek feet, planning our babymoon getaway. The truth is I didn’t want to blog about all of that. No, that’s not entirely it. More like I didn’t want to jinx it. My mom had something like five miscarriages, both in the early and late stages of her pregnancies. Even though I had the sense that everything would be fine, there was still a niggling superstitious part of me that was very careful about putting it all out there. Just in case.

The other part - I got bored with my blogging subject matter. I started this blog to share stories about walking the Camino de Santiago and my other travels, adventures and general nerdy hijinks, but since I started traveling less, I started blogging less. Then I thought maybe I’d go the book blog route, but that just wasn’t working for me. I felt like I’d kind of painted myself in a corner and the fun leaked out of it.

So, I just let the blog lie fallow for while, but I think it’s time to grow again.

Instead of trying to make this a Travel Blog or a Book Blog or a Mom Blog or a Writing Blog, I’m taking a more holistic approach this time. One thing that used to scare me about having kids was this notion that I had to trade in so much of what made me me in order to be a mom. I feared that I could either ____________ or be a mom. I could either hike the Inca Trail to Macchu Pichu, have time to snuggle with my husband, spend time writing and planning challenging lessons for my students, have time to watch Lost, read stacks of books and still play Balderdash with my friends on the weekends OR be a mom.

Not that things haven’t changed, but for the most part, my fears were unfounded. Something Paul helped me realize is that giving up your identity in order to become a mom is a choice.  I may not be able to spend hours on end writing in a coffee shop everyday, but I can write longhand in my notebook when I’m feeding Archer or steal a few minutes here and there. We still go out to dinner with our friends. Paul and I even went to watch New Moon a week after Archer was born. I get to have this amazing little person in my life and I’m still perfectly capable of having an intelligent conversation without a single mention of poop or spit up.

I’m still learning and I know it won’t always be easy. There will be growing pains and sacrifice, but I hope you’ll join me as I try to replace the OR with an AND.
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