My First Favorite Book: Remembering The Giant Jam Sandwich by Bradley Spinelli

My First Favorite Book with Bradley Spinelli on Life Between Books on MandyBoles.com

Today I’m kicking off a new feature called My First Favorite Book. My First Favorite Book will spotlight writers discussing the first book that made them fall in love with reading or made them realize a career in writing was in their future. Many thanks to Bradley Spinelli, author of Killing Williamsburg, for being the first to share his first favorite book!

Remembering The Giant Jam Sandwich

By Bradley Spinelli

Memory is a sieve, memory is a sluice, memory is a sump. And if—in this exact moment—I could remember the exact shades of meaning between those closely-related words, I would just pick one. But memory is unreliable, disastrously subjective, and tainted with emotions. Early childhood memories are even worse, forever clouded by the recounting of other people—do I really remember that, or have I just been hearing the story my entire life?—and distorted by a mind not yet fully formed. I love stories about people who regain their sight after being blind since childhood and have to learn a “visual vocabulary.” (Like this story or the Pang Brothers’ film The Eye.)

Seeing is not just seeing, but understanding what it is you’re looking at.

So, out of the thousands of books I’ve read, plus magazines and periodicals and blogs reaching back four decades, what is the first book that ignited my love for reading? Cut to a montage of zooming planets, worlds of words, zipping backward in time from a profile of Theaster Gates (read last night) popping from a mile-high stack of New Yorkers, a whir of the hundreds of passing drafts of my own novels, now blushing through decades of adult fiction, the repeated reads prominent—Henry Miller, William S. Burroughs, Don DeLillo, and Catch 22—now dipping through a cloudy nebula of plays and theatrical texts from the college years, zooming by high school’s yawning black hole of mandatory sentencing to 19th Century bores, plunging through the SciFi/Fantasy solar system of adolescence, and down into a dizzying whirlpool galaxy of shorter books, Lizard Music, Encyclopedia Brown, barely-remembered books with pictures, books made of thick cardboard, easy for little fingers. Whoops, too far. Pan out a bit. That one. The one with the wasps.

The Giant Jam Sandwich. Story and pictures by John Vernon Lord, verses by Janet Burroway.

The Giant Jam Sandwich Bradley Spinelli author of Killing Williamsburg's First Favorite Book on Life Between Books MandyBoles.comI remembered this book recently after the birth of my Godson, when I was asked to contribute something personal to his library. The book came out in 1972, so it was brand new when I got my dirty paws on it. I’m sure it was first read to me by my mother, but I clearly remember reading it on my own. It was one of my earliest experiences of reading and re-reading, experiencing a story over and over again to further delve the nuances, in the way that I continue to re-watch favorite films today.

If you don’t know the story, it’s simple: the town of Itching Down is beset upon by four million wasps. The townspeople gather together and make a giant jam sandwich to trap the wasps—and splatter them all between two enormous pieces of bread, trapped in sticky strawberry jam. Told through rhyming verses and ridiculous drawings.

This is pure eyecandy for a kid. As Kirkus said, “Children should have fun spotting the cockeyed absurdities purveyed here in pictures and verse.” And I did. The verses themselves have silliness built in, with characters like Mayor Muddlenut and Bap the Baker. The town is called Itching Down. But the pictures are over the top—lurid, baroque illustrations bordering on the obscene. Every look seems to unearth new possibilities. The best parts are making the dough, baking the bread in a giant oven, slicing the bread, and spreading butter and jam, all of which build up to the inevitable splat. I must have looked at these pages a million times. When they’re making the dough, there’s a guy way in the back who can only be seen because of his hands, raised with a club to “thump it” as entreated by the baker. I always thought he was lost back there, caught in the dough, and could almost feel his doughy confines. Of course, looking at it now, I see he was just following directions.

A lot of things make more sense looking back, or seem to, because your adult mind has been trained to believe it makes sense. I know now that John Vernon Lord has taught illustration for over 40 years, and that even after Goodnight Moon and mommy knows what else, his work is still in print. I also know that Janet Burroway is primarily a novelist, who was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and runner up for the National Book Award. She’s probably more widely read because of her textbook, “Writing Fiction: A Guide to Narrative Craft,” which is now in its 7th edition and is widely used in university writing programs. So these two are no slouches, even if they were slumming it in children’s books back in ‘72.

(Tangent: I’m also more widely read via textbook than fiction. I was quoted in Lawrence Stern’s Stage Management, beginning with the 7th edition, discussing my experience of stage managing a circus. Full disclosure: Stern’s was my stage management textbook in college, a class I almost failed.)

Looking back, this book is a spot-on example of how to tell a great story. First, the setup: a simple conflict. And notice they get right to it on the first page. No time for dilly-dallying! Like Syd Field said, you gotta grab ‘em in the first few minutes. It’s a quick story, so they use stock characters—the baker, the farmer, the mayor. You know who these people are. Suspense, wasps cause trouble; rising action, building and baiting the trap; and a climax you’ll never forget—splat! The second piece of bread, dropped from helicopters, traps all the wasps. Except for three, who run away, allowing for a sequel.

What got me as a child were the infinite possibilities of the story—spun not just by the verses but by the images as well. Early on, there’s an image of a guy bent over in his stocking feet, holding his shoes, beating a wasp with spatula. It’s fantastic and could be unwound into an entire story of its own. Why are his shoes off? Why a spatula?

I began to see how words can illustrate themselves, since the pictures were inseparable from the story. Even the added elements became a story in my mind—like the guy on the tractor. He’s there on the bread, riding his tractor, spreading butter, wearing his hat, and there he is again later, with helicopter blades rigged to his tractor along with helium balloons, helping the helicopters with the second slice. Who is this guy? He’s amazing. So much cooler than the guys flying the helicopters, who don’t even get hats.

I spent a lot of time staring at the cover, rolling hills and an arched stone bridge, lines curved like the mind itself. These paths could take you anywhere.

I loved the making of the bread but was troubled by it. Why did they have to bake such a giant loaf of bread when they only needed two slices? Even as I questioned it, I loved seeing the people on the scaffolding, slicing the bread with a lumberjack saw. And why did they butter the bread? Wouldn’t the jam be enough? And if you’re going to butter it, shouldn’t it be toasted first?

It would seem that even at a young age, I was already cursed with a mind that refuses to accept art—or the world—as given. First sign that you might have to create some stuff of your own.

I never got over the fantastic. I’ve written straight plays and naturalistic novels, and my reading and viewing habits lean towards the prosaic, but I loved the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy books and don’t mind the magic in Gabriel García Márquez. And thirty years after The Giant Jam Sandwich came out, I wrote a book about a “bug” that comes into town and turns everything higgledy-piggledy.

But I‘m sure that’s just a fantastic coincidence.

Bradley Spinelli on Life Between Books on MandyBoles.comBradley Spinelli is the author of Killing Williamsburg,  about a suicide epidemic in New York City. Follow him @13_Spinelli.

 

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Guest Post: Lyon’s Bride and The Price of Love by Cathy Maxwell

I am so excited to welcome New York Times best selling author, Cathy Maxwell to The Well-Read Wife for a guest post. Her latest novel is called Lyon’s Bride: The Chattan Curse (Avon, $7.99). Lyon’s Bride: The Chattan Curse has an intriguing plot that involves a fatal curse and star crossed lovers. Cathy’s guest post on the importance of love is both thought provoking and romantic just like all of her wonderful novels. I am so proud that she popped over to hang out with us here at The Well-Read Wife!  Click here to order a copy of Lyon’s Bride: The Chattan Curse from Amazon and click here to follow Cathy on Twitter.

Lyon’s Bride and The Price of Love

How important is love?

That is one of the questions I ponder if my latest book, LYON’S BRIDE, the first book in the Chattan Curse trilogy.
The curse is that when a Chattan male falls in love, he will die.  Powerful incentive to not love, no?
Then again, how do we, as humans created for love, refuse to love?
I believe that who we love and how well we love are the only true measures of a fully lived life.  I, personally, could not imagine a life without love and I’m not talking about just romantic love.  Love itself has no such boundaries—we can love a country, ideas, causes, and so much more.
Love is treacherous to a man like Lyon.
It has also proven to be treacherous for Thea Martin, a woman who has suffered an unhappy marriage, one she had entered because she was in love.  Now the question becomes, can she trust love?
Certainly love has risks.  When we love, we are at our most vulnerable.  If you had been hurt by love, would you, should you risk loving again?

Such weighty matters!

Let’s not forget that LYON’S BRIDE is a romance.  Of course, love will be triumphant.  You and I both know that it.  But it doesn’t come without challenges, which is true in real life.

So share with us, what challenges have you overcome to love?  Or to love again? – Cathy Maxwell

About Cathy Maxwell:

New York Times bestselling author Cathy Maxwell has lived a full and adventurous life. Her resume includes years as a naval officer working with Security Group, to time spent managing a watch factory, with a stint as a news broadcaster and work designing costumes for theater productions thrown in for good measure. Today, Cathy spends hours in front of her computer pondering the question, “Why do people fall in love?” It remains for her the great mystery of life and the secret to happiness. She lives in the Richmond, Virginia, area surrounded by kids, dogs, cats, and horses. (Author bio provided by HarperCollins.)

Cathy asked a very intriguing question at the end of her beautiful post: What challenges have you overcome for love? Or to love again?

Leave a comment and let us know! 

FTC Disclosure: I make a small commission from purchases made by clicking on any of the Amazon links throughout the site.

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Guest Post: Author Piper Maitland Discusses Setting and Her New Novel, Acquainted With The Night

1a author photo (2)I am so happy to host Piper Maitland (pictured at left), author of the novel Acquainted With The Night here on The Well-Read Wife today. Acquainted With The Night is the first book in a brand new series from Berkley books that is an awesome mixture of Indiana Jones, The Da Vinci Code, and Interview With The Vampire. Yes, that’s right: Vampires! I did a little happy dance when I first found out about this series, and I am so happy to have Piper on the blog to talk about the importance of setting in Acquainted With The Night. Keep reading after Piper’s article for more info about Acquainted With The Night including a book trailer. Take it away Piper!

ATennesseeSunsetonPipersFarm

Ask any writer and they’ll tell you that the geography of a novel is inseparable from character and plot. I’ve written seven previous books that were set in my native American South, places I knew intimately—Louisiana, Tennessee, Mississippi, and the Carolinas. But whenever I visited Europe, a different sort of novel tried to emerge. I pushed down the impulse, but just in case I changed my mind, I kept detailed travel diaries.

Pictured Above: A Tennessee sunset as seen from Piper’s farm.

On a winter morning in 2008, while driving to Publix Grocery, I began working on Acquainted With the Night. By the time I’d finished shopping, my characters refused to speak with a twang. They laughed when I tried to feed them grits.

I came home, unpacked my travel journals, and taped photos to a closet door. Then I waited. My heroine, Caro Clifford, still demanded to be British, and she kept throwing out phrases like “shut your cake hole” and “stone the crows.” I didn’t believe her for a second. Why was she putting so much effort into this fake background? What was she trying to hide?

The truth emerged in the first draft. I’d spent most of my life in the Appalachian mountains, and I realized that Caro had, too. When she was five years old, thieves had set fire to her family’s home in Crab Orchard, Tennessee. The murderers had come to kill Caro, too, but she hid behind a waterfall and evaded the men. Days later, her uncle Nigel, a British archeologist, rescued her:

They flew to England and made their way to a cozy, book-lined house in Oxford.

Uncle Nigel tucked her into a poster bed in the guest room. Caro tried to sleep, but a striped cat leaped onto her chest and begun kneading, its claws tugging the wool blanket. Tears pricked Caro’s eyes as she remembered her house in Tennessee—a white clapboard with green shutters, deep porches, and a flying pig weathervane. She remembered limestone, black dirt, coal mines, copperheads, biscuits, syrup running down the blade of a silver knife. Their driveway had a gate that ran on solar power and no one could pass through without a code—or so they’d thought.

shutterstock_40005979A few days later, Uncle Nigel and Caro traveled to London and enjoyed tea at the Georgian Restaurant in Harrod’s (where, years earlier, I’d treated my own mother to a real-life “high tea”). Nigel began to fret about Caro’s American ways. Her parents had just been murdered, and the world believed that Caro was dead. How could Nigel keep her safe when her voice held a Tennessee twang? He decided to set down a few ground rules.

“Do you know what ground rules are, Caro?” he asked the child.

“You lay a ruler on the ground?” She wiped her eyes.

“You’re quite precocious for a tot. But you mustn’t tell anyone you are from Tennessee. Don’t even mention America. I don’t suppose you can tone down that Southern accent?”

“What’s an accent?” Caro asked. She was already confused. The British drank their tea hot, rather than iced, and their cakes were savory, garnished with cut-up plants. Uncle Nigel’s world was rather like Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: the cream was clotted, and you were supposed to eat it. Plus, the English language wasn’t truly English.

dreamstime_4303572Years later, after Uncle Nigel was murdered, he left enigmatic anagrams in his passport. As Caro unraveled the clues, she traveled across Europe. Naturally, I took her to places I’d visited. But no matter where she went, no matter how many British idioms she acquired, Caro was nourished by her Tennessee roots.

Piper, Thank you so much for stopping by! I find it utterly fascinating to hear how authors come up with the settings for their novels. Also, I am so happy to have a new vampire series to follow! – Mandy

More Information about Acquainted With The Night by Piper Maitland:

Acquainted With The Night Cover

Title: Acquainted With The Night

Author: Piper Maitland

544 pages, Published by Berkley

Piper’s Info: Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Youtube

Buy The Book: Amazon

Summary:

A woman’s quest for the truth…A medieval icon that holds the clues…And an ancient book with the power to shake Christianity-and humanity itself.

London tour guide Caroline Clifford has never believe in vampires- until her uncle is brutally murdered at a Bulgarian archaeological site, and a vampire hunter who corresponded with him seeks her out.

Strange anagrams on her uncle’s passport lead them to a cliff-top monastery in Greece, where a shattering revelation connects a relic Caro inherited to an age-old text on immortality-and an enigmatic prophecy that pits the forces of darkness and light in a showdown that could destroy all they know… (Summary provided by Berkley.)

Check out a book trailer for Acquainted With The Night that sheds some light on Caro’s early years:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NGipGe1m5bQ&w=420&h=315]

 

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Guest Post: Mary Lindsey, Author of Shattered Souls

Mary Lindsey

Mary Lindsey

Today I am thrilled to host Mary Lindsey, author of Shattered Souls (December 2011, Philomel/Penguin), on The Well-Read Wife. I asked Mary to make a “Tens List” for me, and she chose the topic “10  Things I do When I’m Not Writing.” I love this topic choice, because I always wonder what my favorite writers are up to when they’re not writing. Let’s see what Mary does when she’s not working on her latest novel, and keep reading to learn more about Shattered Souls!

Take it away Mary!

Top Ten Things I Do When I’m Not Writing

10. Act as taxi driver for my teens. Counting down the days until my oldest drives.
9. Worry that I’m not writing.
8. Serve as chief cook and dishwasher. Ah, the glamorous life.
7. Roll on the floor with my puppy.
6. Sit slack-jawed and zoned out in front of the fish tank. (They stare back in the same
fashion. It’s very rewarding.)
5. Wish I were writing.
4. Go grocery shopping and other mundane life-saving tasks.
3. Search for and read my daughter’s diaries (Not really, but if she reads this, it will
freak her out!)
2. Read a book.
1. Read another book.

Thanks for stopping by Mary! I can’t wait to read Shattered Souls (more info below)! Also, check out Mary’s website, and follow Mary on Twitter.

Shattered Souls

Title: Shattered Souls

Author: Mary Lindsey

336 pages, Published by Philomel/Penguin

Target Age: 14 & up

Summary:

A thrilling debut story of death, love, destiny and danger
Lenzi hears voices and has visions – gravestones, floods, a boy with steel gray eyes. Her boyfriend, Zak, can’t help, and everything keeps getting louder and more intense. Then Lenzi meets Alden, the boy from her dreams, who reveals that she’s a reincarnated Speaker – someone who can talk to and help lost souls – and that he has been her Protector for centuries.
Now Lenzi must choose between her life with Zak and the life she is destined to lead with Alden. But time is running out: a malevolent spirit is out to destroy Lenzi, and he will kill her if she doesn’t make a decision soon. (Summary provided by Philomel/Penguin.)

Click here to preorder a copy of Shattered Souls today!

Many Thanks to The {Teen} Book Scene for including me on the tour for Shattered Souls by Mary Lindsey. Be sure and check out the other stops on the tour:

August 15 – December 16
With a live chat on December 15

Monday, August 15:
Nafiza at Bibliophilic Monologues (Author Interview)

Tuesday, August 16:
Christine at WatchYA Reading (Tens List)
Kari at A Good Addiction (Review)

Wednesday, August 17:
Rie at Mission to Read (Where I Write)

Thursday, August 18:
Cyndi M at Dog Eared and Bookmarked (Author Interview)
Cindy at Books Complete Me (Review)

Friday, August 19:
Megan at A Trail of Books Left Behind (Author Book Picks)

Monday, August 22:
Alisia at Alisia Leavitt (Author Interview)

Tuesday, August 23:
Amber M at Down the Rabbit Hole (Guest Post: Ghost Movies)
Rachel at Fiktshun(Review)

Wednesday, August 24:
Nicole at Word for Teens (Multicharacter Interview)

Thursday, August 25:
Amber S at Me, My Shelf and I (Author Interview including fun story)
Jessi at The Elliott Review (Review)

Friday, August 26:
Rummanah at Books in the Spotlight (Guest Post-what makes a strong heroine)

Tuesday, September 6:
Kathy at I Am A Reader, Not A Writer (Review)

Thursday, September 8:
Stacy at Girls in the Stacks (Review)

Monday, September 12:
Melissa W at Mel’s Books and Info (Character Interview: Zak)
Jessica T at Hopelessly Devoted Bibliophile (Review)

Tuesday, September 13:
Julie C at That’s Swell (Tens List)

Wednesday, September 14:
Patricia at Patricia’s Particularity (Video: Character Names)
Kelsey at The Book Scout (Review)

Thursday, September 15:
Cynthia A at A Blog About Nothing (Character Book Picks: Lenzi)

Friday, September 16:
Bonnie at A Backwards Story (Author Interview)
Christie at The Fiction Enthusiast (Review)

Monday, September 19:
Damaris at Good Choice Reading (Character Interview: Alden)

Tuesday, September 20:
Mandy B at The Well-Read Wife (Tens List)
Britta at I Like These Books (Review)

Wednesday, September 21:
Jennifer L at Larkin’s Book Bloggers (Galveston History Feature Part 2)

Thursday, September 22:
Harmony at Harmony’s Radiant Reads (Character Book Picks: Zak)
Bailey at IB Book Blogging (Review)

Friday, September 23:
Amanda T at Diary of a Book Addict (Author This or That List)

Monday, September 26:
Jenny at Supernatural Snark (Character Interview: Lenzi)
Julia at Rex Robot Reviews (Review)

Tuesday, September 27:
T B at Literary Cravings (Guest Post: Writing First Versus Third Person)

Wednesday, September 28:
Zoe at In The Next Room (Galveston History Feature Part 3)
Jessica E at Confessions of a Total Bookaholic (Review)

Thursday, September 29:
Mariah at A Reader’s Adventure (Character Book Picks: Alden)

Friday, September 30:
Casey at The Bookish Type (Guest Post: Worst Writing Mishap)
Melina at Reading Vacation (Review)

Tuesday, October 4:
Stacy M at Urban Fantasy Investigations (Review)

Thursday, October 6:
Page E at One Book At A Time (Review)

Monday, October 10:
Rachel at Fiktshun (Author Interview)
Heidi Z at YA Bibliophile (Review)

Tuesday, October 11:
Danna at Friendly Reader (Tens List)

Wednesday, October 12:
Precious at Fragments of Life (When I’m Not Writing)
Jen L at The Secret Life of a Bibliophile (Review)

Thursday, October 13:
Allison at The Allure of Books (This or That List: Lenzi)

Friday, October 14:
Alyssa at Teens Read and Write (Author Interview)
Lauren R at Lauren’s Crammed Bookshelf (Review)

Tuesday, October 18:
Kira at Mrs. Boswell’s Book Bag (Review)

Thursday, October 20:
Cyndi M at Dog Eared and Bookmarked (Review)

Monday, October 24:
Kathy at I Am A Reader, Not A Writer (Guest Post: Revision Letter Manifesto)

Tuesday, October 25:
Jennifer H at Late Bloomer Online (Ghosts Feature)
Crystal at My Reading Room (Review)

Wednesday, October 26:
Jenn W at Books at Midnight (Playlist with Book Quotes)

Thursday, October 27:
Michelle B at Hooked to Books (Author Interview w/ Book Line Answers)
Bonnie at A Backwards Story (Review)

Friday, October 28:
Anne L at Creativity’s Corner (Roaches, Fishes and more!)

Tuesday, November 1:
Andye at Reading Teen (Review)

Thursday, November 3:
Liz at Consumed by Books (Review)

Tuesday, November 8:
Amber M at Down the Rabbit Hole (Review)

Thursday, November 10:
Allison at The Allure of Books (Review)

Monday, November 14:
Jenny C at Mimosa Stimulus (Tens List)
Alyssa at Teens Read and Write (Review)

Tuesday, November 15:
Keyona at Only Sexy Books Allowed (Guest Post + Giveaway: Beeyaaa)

Wednesday, November 16:
Emilie at Emilie’s Book World (Setting Video 1)
Alison at Alison Can Read (Review)

Thursday, November 17:
Jennifer L at Larkin’s Book Bloggers (Tens List)

Friday, November 18:
Heidi Z at YA Bibliophile (Character Interview: Race)
Alisia at Alisia Leavitt (Review)

Monday, November 21:
Jen L at The Secret Life of a Bibliophile (Author Interview)
Jennifer H at Late Bloomer Online (Review)

Tuesday, November 22:
Crystal at My Reading Room (Character This or That List: Alden)

Wednesday, November 23:
Page E at One Book At A Time (Setting Video 2)
Damaris at Good Choice Reading (Review)

Thursday, November 24:
Zoe S at Zoe’s Book Reviews (Thanksgiving Feature)

Friday, November 25:
Kira at Mrs. Boswell’s Book Bag (Character Interview: Lenzi)
Christine at WatchYA Reading (Review)

Monday, November 28:
Melina at Reading Vacation (Hannah and Emily’s vid about Mary)
Rummanah at Books in the Spotlight (Review)

Tuesday, November 29:
Heidi at The Readiacs (Mary In Response to Her Daughters)
Julie C at That’s Swell (Review)

Wednesday, November 30:
Yani at The Secret Life of an Avid Reader (Setting Video 3)
Mandy B at The Well-Read Wife (Review)

Thursday, December 1:
Christie at The Fiction Enthusiast (Guest Post: The “Waffling Story”)
Britta at I Like These Books (Character This or That List: Maddi)
T B at Literary Cravings (Review)

Friday, December 2:
Jessica T at Hopelessly Devoted Bibliophile (Character Interview: Maddi)
Cindy at Books Complete Me (Agent Interview)
Michelle B at Hooked to Books (Review)

Monday, December 5:
Jessi at The Elliott Review (Guest Post from Andrea Cremer)
Lauren R at Lauren’s Crammed Bookshelf (The Real Smith)
Rie at Mission to Read (Review)

Tuesday, December 6:
Lili at Chica Reader (Character This or That List: Lenzi)
Corrine at Lost for Words (Guest Post: Writing Method)
Patricia at Patricia’s Particularity (Review)

Wednesday, December 7:
Tara G at Hobbitsies (Setting Video 4)
Danielle B at Frenzy of Noise (Editorial Interview)
Mariah at A Reader’s Adventure (Review)

Thursday, December 8: FIVE POSTS – SCAVENGER HUNT
Katie at Mundie Moms
Kari at A Good Addiction
Jessica E at Confessions of a Total Bookaholic
Bailey at IB Book Blogging
Andye at Reading Teen
Jenny at Supernatural Snark (Review)

Friday, December 9:
Amber at Page Turners Blog (Character Interview: Alden)
Stacy M at Urban Fantasy Investigations (Setting Video 5)
Casey at The Bookish Type (Review)

Monday, December 12:
Trish at YA Bound (Crit Partner Interview)
Myranda at My {Reads} Da (Character This or That List: Race)
Jenny C at Mimosa Stimulus (Review)

Tuesday, December 13:
Madison at Locket Stories (Character This or That List: Zak)
Kelsey at The Book Scout (Anniebear’s Post)
Yani at The Secret Life of an Avid Reader (Review)

Wednesday, December 14:
Sara H at Eve’s Fan Garden (Setting Video 6)
Julia at Rex Robot Reviews (Guest Post: Pets and Writing)
Keyona at Only Sexy Books Allowed (Review)

Thursday, December 15:
Stacy at Girls in the Stacks (Video Interview)
Alison at Alison Can Read (Tens List)
Anne L at Creativity’s Corner (Review)
Live Chat at Page Turners Blog

Friday, December 16:
Liz at Consumed by Books (Character Interview: Zak)
Melissa W at Mel’s Books and Info (Review)

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Guest Post:Aubrie Dionne Discusses Her New Book Paradise 21

Paradise 21 BadgeI

I am super excited to welcome Aubrie Dionne, author of Paradise 21 to The Well-Read Wife. Today Aubrie is going to discuss how the space pirates got their names in her new sci-fi novel Paradise 21. Also, click here to check out a cool giveaway I am hosting for one of Aubrie’s past titles.

Pirate names: learn the crew of the Morphic Marauder

One of the best parts of Paradise 21, and the most fun for me to write about, is the space pirates.

Space pirates are humans that got left behind on a dying Earth and manipulated an escape stealing the last colony ship to survive. Their descendants live on the only working space station Alpha Omega, and each pirate’s name defines who they are as a person.

Striker: The exiled ex-captain of the ship. He has excellent battle skills and can strike any object from long distances, not only with a laser, but also (as we learn on Sahara 354) a metal rod.

Tiff: The goth girl that will fight to the death if she doesn’t get her way. In other books, Tiff may be short for Tiffany, but in Paradise 21, she’s an argument waiting to happen.

Reckon: The ship’s decoder. He has the uncanny ability to give everyone what’s coming to them. Aka: their own personal reckoning.

Loot: A boy found in the ventilator shafts. He’s pillaged his whole life to survive, and won’t bat an eyes if he has to steal to make his way.

Find out what happens to each one in Paradise 21.

My question to you is: if you were a pirate, what would your name be?

Thanks Aubrie! I love hearing how authors come up with character names. It is so interesting, and it makes reading the book even more fun!

necklaces 002

Many thanks to Kismet Book Tours for allowing me to host Aubrie. Leave a comment on this post and any of the stops on the Paradise 21 tour to be entered to win a beautiful necklace (at left). See below for more stops on the Paradise 21 tour.

Paradise 21 Tour Stops

Monday, August 8th – Cinnamon, A Journey of Books / Guest Post, Where Aubrie got the idea for Paradise 21
Tuesday,  August 9th –Tishia, Paranormal Opinion / Guest Post, Paradise 21: Space Pirates with a Chip on Their Shoulder
Wednesday, August 10th – Jules, The Great, The Good and The Bad / Guest Post, Sci fi terminology in Paradise 21
Thursday, August 11th- Bree, The Magic Attic / Character Interview, Striker
Friday, August 12th – We Fancy Books / Guest Post, The baddies in Paradise 21

Monday, August 15th – Kristin, My Bookish Ways / Author Interview
Tuesday, August 16th – Cindy, Oodles of Books / Guest Post, Luggage in Space
Wednesday, August 17th- Rie, Mission To Read / Guest Post, Creating your own world: Positives and Negatives
Thursday, August 18th – Grace, Books Like Breathing / Character Interview, Aries
Friday, August 19th – Ambur, Burning.x.Impossibly.x.Bright / Guest Post, Character Building: Challenges and Rewards

Tuesday, August 23th – Christie, The Fiction Enthusiast / Guest Post, Paradise 21: the twenty first planet capable of sustaining life
Wednesday, August 24th – Pushy, Bewitched Bookworms / Author Interview
Thursday, August 25th – Farrah, The Book Faery Reviews / Guest Post, What Makes Space Opera So Awesome?
Friday, August 26th- Mandy, The Well-Read Wife / Guest Post, Pirate names: learn the crew of the Morphic Marauder

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