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This is a book by a New York writer with ideas and issues prevalent in 2012. Central to the story is the 2012 Mayan end-of-the-world prophecy and a race to discover what it could possibly be. A meteor smashing into earth, a huge tsunami or a Solar Wind? It also includes ordinary people fighting back against a big corporation, Global-1, that wants to take over the world (and own people) with no regard to the damage that it is doing to the earth. Several mentions are made in the book to the BP oil spillage that took place in April 2010.
Whilst all this is going on, Grace and Eric meet at a rock climbing centre and find themselves caught up on the side of those trying to save the world. They find themselves introduced to some futuristic technologies yet relying on Native American beliefs.
With just over 200 pages this is a short story that you will want to race through to the end.
Read this book to find out “who did it” and learn a few cool things along the way.
Colin Fischer is an unusual detective story written by two authors (Ashley Edward Miller and Zachary Stentz) who met on the Internet as a result of their ” mutual love of all things Star Trek” .
The book begins as Colin Fischer (14 years old) starts his first day at high school, which incidentally, ends with his head down the toilet! Colin is a boy who loves facts, he is logical, he writes down what he observes in his notebook (in green ink) and he speaks the truth. But Colin can’t read facial expressions and has a prompt sheet of expressions to help him. “When a phone rings loudly in class, Colin can’t cope. So he barks like a dog. But when a gun goes off in the school cafeteria he isn’t scared. He’s curious…”
I really enjoyed this book, especially all the interesting facts that are included at the beginning each chapter, which illustrate and enhance the story. For example, did you know that rats laugh but humans can’t hear them? Keep reading and you will discover the best strategy for parking a car and getting into the shops, all about The Prisoner’s Dilemma, The Kuleshov Effect and much more.
Light is the sixth and final book in the Gone series by Michael Grant who visited King’s college in 2010.
His exciting series starts with all the adults over the age of 15 disappearing from the town of Perdido Beach, and then unusual things start to happen ….
If you’ve read some of this series have a listen to this interview with Michael Grant. Warning, if you haven’t read the books ( and you like to go into a book not knowing what is going to happen)in this interview he does talk about what happens to some characters.
The books in order are:
Follow Michael Grant on Twitter
Michael Grant’s Blog
For a lot more information on the Gone series including the characters, the battles, photos and videos have a look at this Wikifayz
Photo: MillionHoodies. Shadow. BW321 by Nakeva Corothers
Are you happy with who you are, in your own skin?
What about your name, are you happy with that, or does it let you down? I have a sister who hated her given name so much that she decided to change it. She wouldn’t answer anyone’s questions unless they used her new one…it worked!
How about your race, or the colour of your skin? Does this force you to live two lives (one at home and one at school) or have you found a way that’s right for you?
How about your body? Would you be more comfortable if you were taller and had more muscle? Perhaps you would feel better if your breasts were bigger, or smaller? Perhaps you can’t wait to get a piercing, dye your hair and get lots of tattoos.
And what about your gender? You are happy to be a guy, right? Being a girl is great isn’t it, or, is it?
What if you hate your body, your name is not right, and deep down inside you have always known that although your body is growing in one way, that gender is not who you are?
Meet the world of J … born a Puerto Rican girl living in New York City who knows he is a guy. He is angry, confused and misunderstood, and has no one he can trust with the truth, not even his best friend. School is a nightmare – they think he is a lesbian, they call him a dyke, and his parents have impossible expectations saving all their money so that their daughter can go to college. Puberty is tough, but this is way off the scale.
If you can identify with some of these issues you will find this a great read. Even if you have none of these issues, this book will make you feel that you are very lucky to have such an easy life. Either way, read this book, experience the pain and the hope, and understand that some people, in the words of Lady Gaga, are just “born this way.”
This story reminds me of Chaz Salvatore Bono, Cher’s son, who was born Chastity Sun Bono a girl and underwent a sex change. “At the time, Cher promised to support her child on his “difficult journey” and said she would “strive to be understanding”.”
Support and understanding are vital to us all. This was demonstrated recently (on the 17th April 2013) in New Zealand when members of parliament voted in favour of amending the 1955 Marriage Act to allow same-sex couples to marry. After the votes had been read out people spontaneously started singing the Maori love song Pokarekare Ana
I wonder how J would have felt if his friends and family had celebrated the news of his transgender with a love song?
If you are interested to read what the author says about writing I am J
If you would like to read Cris Beam’s website see
Hugh Howey at Takapuna Library on Monday, 22 April 2013
The Wool series by Hugh Howey is a book with no sheep! The wool in the title refers to the saying “to pull the wool over somebody’s eyes” in other words, to deceive someone in order to prevent them from discovering something. It has a wide appeal for all sorts of readers and is an exciting mystery. It is also a thriller set in a dystopian, science fiction world about a group of people living underground.
“What would you do if the world outside was deadly, and the air you breathed could kill? And you lived in a place where every birth required a death, and the choices you made could save lives – or destroy them. This is Jules’ story. This is the world of Wool.”
The Wool Series consist of three books:
Shift (this is the prequel, but Hugh Howey recommends that you read Wool first, in the same way that you wouldn’t want to watch the Star Wars films in sequential order)
Dust (due in October 2013)
In publishing terms Wool is unusual because it evolved as a short story in eBook format published online in instalments on Amazon. It became popular with readers who sent emails asking for more, and so the story “took off” and eventually ended up as a single volume in print. In this way it is a mixture of the old and the new. Many years ago Charles Dickens (1812 – 1870) published his stories in weekly, or monthly instalments in journals, and then modified what he wrote according to the feedback he received. Would he have enjoyed the direct relationship with his readers that online publishing, twitter and blogs provide authors like Hugh Howey today?
This weekend Hugh Howey blogged ” Bumpy landing in a massive rainstorm last night. Woke up looking over the harbour here in Auckland. A bevy of interviews today before the event tonight. So excited to be here. It’s been on my wish-list for so long; hard to believe I’m really on the other side of the globe from my home.”
On Monday evening I was lucky enough to hear him speak and he told us that amongst other things he has been a sailing captain and worked in construction. He described life on board a boat as Captain as not all glamorous quite often it involves living below deck fixing the engines and unblocking the head (toilet) in order to facilitate the good life for others enjoying life above deck. He has seen both sides – the life of billionaires and ordinary workers.
Even though Wool has been his greatest success so far, he has written many books, and says, “Finishing your first book is an incredible feeling; like climbing a mountain.” Wool took three months to write and was an enjoyable experience. The reaction you have to your writing he says is a good indication of how others may also enjoy the story. His writing day is usually 6 to 11 a.m. every day. He uses a computer to write, and with tongue in cheek he says that using your right hand to write with a pen makes you use the logical side of your brain, whereas two hands on the computer uses both sides of the brain and is more creative.
Some writers “follow” their stories as they write them not knowing where they will end, and others like to frame their writing within a plot. Hugh Howey says that he falls into the “plotter” camp and likes to start at the end, so that he knows where the story is going.
Authors that Hugh Howey admires and enjoys include Mark Twain (for his satire and humour), Peter F. Hamilton, Neil Gaiman and Neal Stephenson who wrote Cryptonomicon (about people in different time periods). Film rights to the Wool series have been sold to 20th Century Fox with English film director and producer Ridley Scott (Alien, Prometheus, Blade Runner, Gladiator), and a screenplay is currently being written, although Hugh Howey is not allowing himself to get too excited in case it never happens. Perhaps this trailer will have to do until then.
This seems to be a series of books that splits readers apart – they either love it, or hate it. In order not to spoil any of the surprises I wont tell you what it is about, or link any reviews, I’ll just say read it and find out for yourself.
Opening lines of the City of Bones by Cassandra Clare:
“You’ve got to be kidding me,” the bouncer said, folding his arms across his massive chest. He stared down at the boy in the red zip-up jacket and shook his head.”You can’t bring that thing in here”.
Mortal Instruments series
The Prequels – The Infernal Devices series
The Sequels – The Dark Artifices series ( not until 2015)
The Bane Chronicles series (2014)
This is a collection of ten short stories centred around Magnus Bane. They are being released in eBook format in the States leading up to The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones movie (out on August 23 2013). All ten stories will be followed by a single print edition in 2014.
Don’t forget you can download an eBook version of The Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices series from our eBook collection here.