I read a book about 5 years ago that was a young adult book with the main characters' name as Julie or Julia. She was in school plays and her best friend lived next to her so she could open her window and cross the big tree and climb in her friend's window. A guy starts leaving poems pinned to the tree and she thinks they're for her friend but they end up being for her "winter below (it's snowy), july above(as in julie/a)". Other details I remember are that she emails him, her mom works at a boutique and brings home dresses in a trunk for the girls, she kisses her best friends' brother in their backyard, and the guy finally comes up in her room via the tree one day. This is driving me CRAZY.
Robin Leigh Morgan here, I'm a new member to Live Journal as I've just found out about it. This naturally makes me a NewBie member to this group; so please excuse my ignorance here about how things are done as I'm still getting my feet wet.This is one of the groups I've join which coincides with my writing.
I'm a retired NYCity employee who's been married for 20 years [November 2013] with no children.My written commentaries for a community newspaper for several years prior to June 2006. My first romance writing endeavor for a novel is a YA Paranormal/Time Travel/First Kiss entitled "I Kissed a Ghost" which got self-published on December 20, 2012, the KINDLE addition got released on May 12, 2013. I'm currently writing a still untitled adult Contemporary with a paranormal element running through parts of the storyline.
As I'm a newcomer to this community as well as to LiveJournal I'm looking to make some friends here.
The Maze Runner is the first of James Dashner's series about a group of teens who live in a strange maze, each arriving with a blank memory and only knowing their first name. Thomas is dropped into the maze by means of "the Box", an elevator used to transport supplies and the occasional new boy to the Glade, a pleasant farm where all the prisoners get assigned a job. As the newbie, the reader learns about the place through Thomas. The Gladers have fruitlessly tried to solve the maze that surrounds the Glade for around two years. The Glade is only populated by boys, until a mysterious girl shows up on day in the Box.
The boys constantly fight and argue despite their attempts to keep order. Thomas soon learns that strange monsters, called Grievers, roam the maze at night. Getting stung by a Griever leads to a delirious episode called the Changing, in which memories briefly return to the victim. As monsters go, the Grievers are not really that terrifying.
This first book, published a year after The Hunger Games, was actually written years before, but it's not remarkable enough to make me want to purchase the rest. Part of the problem is that the set up is drawn out far too long with the end spanning just a few chapters. It seems like less time was spent on thinking out the dynamics of the ending as opposed to the overly detailed account of life in the Glade (seriously, the repetitive nature of YA books needs to be addressed. I'm sure the average teenager is not going to forget details from one chapter to the next). Then there's the slang, which are really minced oaths, that gets old really fast from overuse. The fakest British speaking person ever was also annoying. The real thing would have been preferable to constant shuck and klunk. There's only so much of the characters calling each other shuck-faced, pieces of klunk and slinthead that one can take!
It didn't take me long to finish the last two books - Suzanne Collins is a master at writing cliffhangers. Book 4 and 5 are more like one book than the previous three, and differ vastly in tone as well. Collins ramps up the violence as the Underland humans and rats prepare for war, transforming the series from mere adventure books.
Suzanne Collins is famous for her trilogy The Hunger Games, but I'm sure few would know that she has another young adult series called The Underland Chronicles. It stars an average boy, Gregor, who is the hero of a cavernous and dangerous place under New York City. After fulfilling Book One's prophecy, he is naturally drawn back several more times as the Underlanders keep trying to decipher cryptic prose. In Book Two, he must defeat an enormous rat called The Bane and quests for a cure for a plague in Book Three. Book Three ends with a crazy cliffhanger that, if the fourth or fifth books were not already out, would have driven me mad :-D
Rather than discuss the plot of the two stories, I feel it is far more important to talk about just how much Collins packs into each of them. If the lessons of The Hunger Games were lost amid who Katniss would pick for a lover, they are certainly found again in The Underland Chronicles. The entire series is a mirror for the real world of diplomatic relations, war, poverty, hunger and racism. It becomes apparent after Book One that nothing is black and white in the Underland. The Underlanders chief enemies, the Gnawers (rats), are sympathetically portrayed, especially when the two sides need to co-operate to solve problems. And just as the rats are not entirely bad, the Underlanders are not entirely good either.
Possibly the greatest pleasure in this series is Gregor's development as he juggles supporting his family and his friends. Gregor is an amazingly human character, with faults and anxieties. He learns there are consequences to his actions, but this is done in a gentle and non-preachy way that doesn't interfere with the exciting plot twists and actions that Collins creates.
Son is the fourth and perhaps final book in The Giver series by Lois Lowry, and I'm not sure what to make of it as an adult reader. The previous two books, Gathering Blue and Messenger, had similar plot holey problems, spoiled the ambiguity of The Giver's ending and completely changed the story universe.
I would be completely OK with the sequels if they occurred in another story universe. The Giver was so fantastic and carefully written. Unfortunately I am no longer a young adult, but I'm pretty sure that I would have LOVED all four books. But this is what ten years of art college does - it makes you pick those nits. As such, my grade is "good, needs improvement".
Usually when Kobo has book specials, they're all lame books. The system swings wildly between offerings, possibly puzzled by not being able to pin down age and gender through my purchases.
Anyway, up popped the first book in a series for older children called Gregor the Overlander from 2010 by Suzanne Collins. Usually I snap up books by authors I like right away, but I guess I was too preoccupied with supernatural romance there for a while ;) The reading level is a touch lower than most YA books and is on the pre-teen end of the spectrum.
Gregor us a young boy who lives with his mother, grandmother and two younger sisters in New York City. One day while doing laundry in the apartment basement, he stumbles into the Underland, which is populated by pale humans and giant, talking animals. Cockroaches, spiders, bats and rats are just a few of the inhabitants. Gregor soon finds that he must fulfill a prophecy before he and his littlest sister can return to the surface.
It took a while for the action to get going, but once it did, it was really good. Adult readers will find it predictable, perhaps a little too simple and a little too right out of Joseph Campbell, but younger readers, especially boys, will enjoy it. Gregor as a male character is rare in fiction - he's just an average boy, but his virtuous and honest nature is compelling.
We'll have daypasses available onsite, but the only way to get a Full registration for Ascendio, the final fancon by HPEF which is taking place in Orlando, Florida & at the WWoHP from July 12 - 15, is to register online before midnight (EDT) tomorrow!
If you want to enjoy all of our Quill Track, you need a Full Registration, but if you just want to come to the readings and signings by authors like Lev Grossman, Beth Revis and Aimee Carter, you can do all that with a Thursday daypass.
Now, each NoaTW 2 ticketholder will be able to enter Universal's Islands of Adventure® starting at 2 PM on Thursday, July 12, and will get a $20 voucher for dinner that can be used that evening. The price of a NoaTW ticket remains the same.
After 10, NoaTW2 ticketholders will have exclusive access to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, where we'll be featuring an extensive menu of dessert and beverages on the streets of Hogsmeade - and they're included with your NoaTW 2 ticket! And don't forget - NoaTW is the only chance you'll have this year to wear costumes in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
During Night of a Thousand Wizards, we'll have a a DJ spinning music, lashings of Butterbeer, a chance to hang out with Chris Rankin (Percy Weasley) and Afshan Azad (Padma Patil) and so many other awesome moments!
Who else is coming to Night of a Thousand Wizards? The HP Alliance's Andrew Slack, Mark of MarkReads, members of Team StarKid, authors like Lev Grossman, and Ascendio's Special Guests Chris Rankin and Afshan Azad!
You should join us too! Each ticket includes admission to Islands of Adventure starting at 2 PM, a $20 gift card to use towards food in the Park, dessert and free-flowing Butterbeer and Pumpkin Juice after 10 PM in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and our exclusive Night of a Thousand Wizards event on the streets of Hogsmeade! Tickets start at $140 for registrants.
Love books? Excited for the AscendioQuill Track? Want to discover new books, both hot YA titles and books written by fellow Ascendio attendees? Ascendio's Authorpalooza/Book Fair event is for you!
If you're a fan of YA, the Ascendio Authorpalooza is for you! Everyone is invited to enjoy readings and signings by fantastic authors and peruse our Book Fair and Vendor Rooms!
Authorpalooza will take place from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday, July 12th, as a pre-con event. Whether you've just settled into your hotel room and want some activities before Night of a Thousand Wizards 2, or want to attend a reading/signing between Wrock sets, or want to browse books after picking up your Registration pack, Authorpalooza is a great opportunity to interact with Ascendio authors, and get a preview of The Quill Track.
PLUS if you plan on pitching your novel to one of Ascendio's literary agents, Authorpalooza is where you'll get first dibs on the sign-up form!
We have a preliminary schedule of reading/signings. In addition to the readings/signings going on in Davinci and Michaelangelo, we'll have several tables outside Registration where you can browse books by fellow attendees, as well as meet representatives from companies such as Omnific Publishing and Wattpad, who can help you take your writing to the next level!
2 p.m.: Beth Revis (A Million Suns)
3 p.m. Michelle Hodkin (The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer)
4 p.m. Lev Grossman (The Magician King)
5 p.m. Erotica hour (featuring Kele Moon, Diana Copland, Cecilia Tan and more!)
2:30 p.m. Mark Oshiro (aka: MarkReads)
3:30 p.m. Aimee Carter (Goddess Interrupted)
4:30 p.m. Lindsay Ribar (The Art of Wishing -- to be released by Dial Books in 2013 -- sneak peek reading!)
5:30 p.m.: Karen Morris (Law Made Fun through Harry Potter’s Adventures)
6 p.m.: Valerie Frankel (Harry Potter: Still Recruiting: An Inside Look at Fandom after Book Seven)
6:30 p.m.: Erin Pyne (The Ultimate Guide to the Harry Potter Fandom)
(Please note that Veronica Roth and Libba Bray will be doing readings/signings on Saturday of the conference -- a Saturday day pass will be needed to attend those events)