OUR CURRENTLY FEATURED BOOKS, “THE HUNGER SAINT,” BY OLIVIA KATE CERRONE AND “PARADE OF HORRIBLES,” BY RHETT DeVANE, CAN BE FOUND BY SCROLLING DOWN BELOW THIS POST, ALONG WITH “2017 SUGGESTIONS FOR SUMMER READING.” OR, JUST CLICK THE AUTHOR’S NAME ON OUR AUTHOR PAGE.
Perhaps because I’m a writer myself, I find myself especially drawn to the “Back Story” and “Author Comments” sections of our Snowflakes templates.
For books don’t just appear out of nowhere, delivered intact by genies. They begin with an idea, and I’m always intrigued by where that idea originated and how it may have been fleshed out and revised between the moment of discovery and the triumph of publication.
Moreover, I’d like to think such personal reflections from authors make their books more interesting to prospective readers. Take, for example, what Molly Gaudry (photo above) wrote about the origins of “We Take Me Apart,” one of this week’s features:
“The title came first, on a long drive from Chicago to Philadelphia. All my belongings were packed in my car and once I got to Philly I moved into a room for rent and began writing. Evenings, I taught Pre-GED and GED courses in a halfway house for post-incarcerated men and women. After, I bought coffee on my way home and then wrote until 6am, 7am, 8am, sometimes until noon. I slept, and then I went to work. On repeat. When I had ten pages of a half poem, half story, I queried J.A. Tyler at Mud Luscious. At the time, he was publishing 1,000-word chapbooks. My poem/story exceeded the word count but I asked if he might consider it anyway. While he was considering, I blogged about thinking it might be a longer project. When he responded, he asked if I really thought it could become a full-length book. I said yes, and a book deal was born. It would be Mud Luscious’s first book, and it launched the “novel(la)” series.”
Or this, from “Doc Harrison and the Apocalypse” author Peter Telep, a two-time Snowflakes participant perhaps best known for having once collaborated on a book with Tom Clancy:
“I knew a few things when I began brainstorming the Doc Harrison series. I wanted to write for young adults and have the story veer more toward science fantasy than hard science fiction. I wanted my narrator to be sixteen. I wanted the major setting to be an alien world that had suffered an apocalypse. I was working against the popular idea to place a heroine in a dystopian future Earth where she hates her life, falls in love, and does battle against the evil forces of the government. I thought exploring the ruins of an alien world might be different, fun, and dramatic. I knew that even with a male lead I could still have engaging female characters who never take a backseat to the hero or the plot. Julie, Meeka, Steffanie, and many others you’ll meet along our journey are characters whose sacrifices and achievements inspire Doc to reach new heights as a young man. They become much more than just his friends and in most respects are as strong as if not stronger than Doc or any other characters.”
This week also features our first mother/daughter team, the Florida-based duo of Helen and Lorri Carpenter. Writing as “HL Carpenter,” they specialize in cozy mysteries and young adult books — including this week’s Snowflakes feature, “Pirate Summer.”
UPCOMING ON SNOWFLAKES IN A BLIZZARD, JUNE 27-JULY 3.
“DOC HARRISON AND THE APOCALYPSE,” BY PETER TELEP.
What if everything you know turns out to be a lie? What if your parents kept a terrible secret that shatters your entire life on the day before your sixteenth birthday? What if you wake up trillions of miles from home on an alien planet that’s been torched by your own father? And what if the girl you love is involved in the darkest secret of all, one that forces you to confront her with the truth?
My name’s Docherty Harrison, and this is my story. Hey, I didn’t ask for all this. I just went out to get a pizza. I wasn’t ready to fight for my life. I’m just a kid from the most dysfunctional family in the universe.
“WE TAKE ME APART,” BY MOLLY GAUDRY.
I quote this review, from Kate Bernheimer: “There is no more perfect place to be than in Molly Gaudry’s tender, dirt-floored novella, We Take Me Apart. Oh cabbage leaves, oh roses, oh orange-slice childhood grins: this book broke my heart. Its sad memory-tropes come from fairy tales and childhood books. With language, Gaudry is as loving and careful as one is with a matchbook . . . when wishing to set the whole world on fire.”
“PIRATE SUMMER,” BY HL CARPENTER.
Fifteen year old Josey is a liar. She’d like to stop. But after Mom left, the lies started popping out, like the time Josey left her little brother at the library and told Dad he’d run away.
Then Josey meets a boy who tells bigger whoppers than she does. He says he’s the son of a privateer who’s been dead two centuries. He’s so convincing Josey’s brother believes every word and sets off to find the privateer’s hidden treasure.
When her brother disappears, Josey is sure she knows where he’s gone. But everyone thinks she’s lying again. Everyone, that is, except the so-called privateer’z son. He knows she’ss telling the truth because jeweled riches are only part of his tale. There’s also the snooperscope, a device that makes time leaps possible, like the one that brought him to the present.
The story is fantastical…and yet Josey will do anything to save her brother — including traveling back in time two hundred years with a boy she can’t trust.