I choose erudite, faction from Roth’s ‘Insurgent’

Erudite SymbolAbnegation. Candor. Amity. Erudite. Dauntless.

In Veronica Roth‘s addicting dystopian series, “Divergent” there are five factions you would belong to depending on which family you are born in.

At the age of sixteen, you have to Choose where you will belong to for the rest of your life.

The main protagonist, Beatrice Prior now Tris Prior was born abnegation(selfless faction) but switched to dauntless(battle ready faction, action, bravery) and learns she is actually a divergent- a mixture of all the factions.

One faction I would belong to would be erudite(knowledge happy, fact greedy faction). And although in “Insurgent(Book 2 in the Divergent series) the Erudite continue to be frowned upon, I have personal and practical reasons why I would fit perfectly in the erudite community:

  • The erudite, from birth has a love of books and information. So have I.
  • Although many of the erudite are trained to be cold and calculating or “born” that way, they are the most logical.
  • In the series, out of all the factions- the erudite seems to have all the power and that power is called information.

These are not really powerful reasons to be erudite as many of their cool demeanor is damaging to families and others; all for the sake of the cause of gathering information. I understand being at a library for hours a day, that is what I do now. But to lack compassion? Come on, erudite, it is so not logical to piss off every faction.

Which faction would you choose and why?

Pass this post along to others so we can discuss this oh so important faction loyalty. :)

As you read and write and site changes

There will be some dramatic(not too many) changes to my blog. After reflecting and doing some online researching and calling to rememberance why I have set up this blog, in the first place I have to revamp it a little.

  • First, this is a writing blog. So even though I do posts about amazing books I have read- they are just reviews.
  • So, the first change is no more main blog posts about books. Perhaps a few lines summary of a book and the writing style will be discussed or some other detail about writing. From now on book reviews will be housed on my Goodreads Page. Hopefully this link cooperates.
  • More on poetry since that is what I do, as well as fiction dissected. Again, I am not an amateur blogger per se and  although I know a lot about literature, the writing and publishing venture is still fresh to me so I must rely on experts’ opinions as I take you on my journey with blog post series such as “Tracking an Author”

These are just a few of the changes I will try hard to stick to. Again, book reviews will mainly be left to Goodreads, Examiner, or my family’s sister site Mission Possible(for inspirational/Christian thoughts and books)

God bless you all as you read and write! :)

A christian whose versatile with choice of reading material-any harm in that?

 

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I promised in my last post to explain what it means to be versatile with genres of choice to read and write. I suppose there are many reasons why people choose the books they read- emotions and moods, curosity, work, school reports. anything.

My aunt one day handed me this thick, pink book of Inspirational Fiction with Christian themes- they were all romances and I read the book and actually loved it. I fell in love with Romantic CF but soon I fell in love with another genre- African American Romance/ Erotica while in college. After that I discovered YA books again with the introduction of Twilight in 2008.

Alright. That’s the watered down version and will be saved for a longer diatribe. The fact is I love to read. If there is a story I can relate to or wish to relate to then it is okay with me. I love storytelling and enjoy the many trips fiction has taken me on. I’m sure you know what I mean fellow reader/viewer/writer. It’s the best!

Different books have shown me different facets of my own heart:

R.L. Stine/Horror: showed me I can be spooked from the pen of an author and what power words can have.

Christopher Pike/Speculative-Horror: Christopher Pikes books took me to places where vampires can cry and young girls could be gods, and there is an answer to the afterlife if we search hard enough.

Christian Fiction/General: Helps me to see my life struggles and happiness are not my own. Some books have actually helped me with my prayer life!

African American Romances: Black women need love too :) Yeah thats all I got out of most of them…

So here I am,  a Christian Fiction Examiner who promotes these works to another kind of demographic. Am I a hypocrite for this? Aboslutely not! Books rooted in a certain theme or religion are not bad books if the writing is good. Period. However I am born human first with many sins and my color, culture and religion all come after that fact(singer Erykah Badu can explain this better than I can!) Anyhow, I have learned so much spirituality from secular fiction as I have from Christian Fiction. Put another way:

Secular Fiction= the reality of the need for a Savior.

Christian Fiction= needs to write more about the need for a Savior and not just those who are already saved.

For now I am comfortable in my skin, enjoy good music, books, and what I write about. All these things are me.

Question: Why do you like Christian Fiction/Secular/Both?

One thing writers should realize… and a free download of ‘Mark of Fortune’

Cover Design by E. J. Smith| Cover Image of Enceladus from Nasa.org

One thing writers should realize in the present economical and digital age, is that providing literature has gotten more creative and cost effective. We talk about the ways in which the internet allowed for anyone to self publish and have more freedom, but what about the benefits to those readers who purchase our words?

Here’s a rule…never charge for a short story. Let people save their pennies for something else like foods, clothes, or to donate to organizations. After releasing my book free for Prime members on Amazon Kindle only, I began to think : “Why am I charging even 99 cents for this to others! It’s only thirty odd pages, gosh!”*

So, Good News: “Mark of Fortune” is free. Forever.  It is only nice to provide stories for people to download conveniently(and it received 50 downloads its first night!) I don’t brag at all, but it is nice to see some downloads but that only tells half the story.

Another thing writers should realize, is that writing may be a solo effort but collaboration takes place between their audience as well. Expecting feedback from an honest reader/reviewer can be healthy. If the review is overly critical or insane I ignore it.

Otherwise it is something in which we all share in.

I’m waiting for the feedback.

Now here is my Smashwords Edition of Mark of Fortune, click the link. Read and you can visit my Connect With E.J. Page to send your review as well as review on Smashwords.*

*I will be posting snippets from the book exclusively on Google+

*’Mark of Fortune was 30 pages and is now reduced to 23 after edits :)

*Tell me, are you working on a short story? Would you charge for it? Why or why not? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

She traveled through time to kiss William Shakespeare in ‘Kissing Shakespeare’

Kissing ShakespeareKissing Shakespeare by Pamela Mingle

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Miranda is about to act in ‘Taming of the Shrew’. It will be the show of a lifetime. Yet, she is about to play an even bigger role- in 16th Century England as the vixen who will seduce the very real, and very young William Shakespeare.

When Stephen Langford met Miranda, he knew she was the one to come with him through time to help the young William Shakespeare makes the decision to write and not become a Jesuit. Which at that time was a very serious offense, accompanied by execution. Miranda’s job is to seduce William to the other side. But when she and Stephen get closer together with their schemes and conversations about personal life and relationships, Miranda realizes:

She may not want to leave England.

Stephen has become something of a shoulder to lean on and it doesn’t help that he is charming, brilliant, and very handsome as well. It kind of confuses the mission…

Pamela Mingle has written a fine work that is sure to get more youth involved with reading some Shakespeare. The only caution is that there is one vulgar word mentioned at least twice in the story and a couple of situations that are too risqué for twelve year olds to read. Maybe sixteen years and up.

Otherwise a lovely book that I can definitely see as a nice film as well.

View all my reviews

‘Mark of Fortune’ new short story

Nasa

Under the pen name Sheerrain Kase, Mark of Fortune was written. A quick, thirty odd page novella on the meeting between Samosa, a thirty year old community college student and handsome man named Stone of the Ice Rings.

Without giving much away, they meet up and Samosa finds out that this humble guy who helps her in her worst moment, is much more than a man. He has something they both need. What makes the book interesting is the fact that there is no real need for actual sex scenes as what Stone can do to any woman is sensual and…uncomfortable at best.

Stone has his own story to tell and his adventure from Galaxy to Midplane to Earth and his love triangles across the universe before he met the beautiful Samosa- is worth telling. His story will be published this Spring/Summer 2012 and available on Smashwords, Createspace, and Kindle.

Right now, if you are an Amazon Prime Member you can read this book for free!

The Write Web Reviews: ‘A Much Younger Man’ by Dianne Highbridge


A Much Younger Man by Dianne Highbridge

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Some stories we read and given the blurb, we know how it will turn out.

Then there are books that are written so economically, so precise and with so much poetry, you enjoy the “making” of the plot more than how the story ends.
I say this because I read A Much Younger Man, and enjoyed the smallness of the book- only 214 pages to be exact.

The title seemed so taboo, so romantic. I picked it up and read it all in one day. Here’s some background(WITH SOME SPOILERS)

Aly is thirty five and teaches English to what the readers will assume are high schoolers (the novel users words like ninth year and eleventh year student to denote student status). However, Aly takes the train one Friday and finds Tom.
Tom is her friend’s fifteen year old son.(I never realized the love interest in this story would be so…young, a child.)

Tom is tall, handsome, plays the lute, can sing and enjoys architecture. The author does not write this with flowery words but the way she writes is almost poetry- like a dance. For example: “Whose boy is this? A neighbour’s glimpsed on a Saturday morning driveway…Whose?(pg. 2).
It doesn’t stop there. In the middle of her prose, the author will throw in a few words of background to catch you up on why a person’s history and it was fun to read like this. She wastes no words and it makes for quick, light, albeit engrossing reading.

So the boy Tom immediately shows interest in Aly and each Friday she finds herself on the train. Even though she has a car. Immediately, we understand something is wrong. Even Aly knows it. Then one day Tom comes home with her and he asks for a kiss…

This is where the taboo starts, and Aly says she didn’t want things to be that way but her heart betrays her. She had an abusive husband before and this is just another circus in her life she wishes no one to find out about.

As a reader and a noble citizen of society- you frown upon what happens between Tom and Aly. Rightly so. But the book does more than tell of their sexual encounters. There are always repercussions.

And there is always love.

Reading about Tom was like reading about a twenty five year old trapped in a fifteen year old body. This brings me to my next point.

In today’s society there is a nasty word for what Aly is doing with Tom.

It’s not even the age difference that is the problem here.

It’s maturation and boundaries.

Parents want their child to grow up and have a fun childhood, a freedom fulfilled life. Not clumped together with someone twice their age. In the book, Tom shows more confidence in himself and hope than Aly does. Sure he leaves his wet towel on the ground sometimes and when they argue he cranks up his headphones. But something about him caught Aly’s attention.

I give this book five stars for superb writing and storytelling.

Quote Nugget: “She lifts her skirt, walks into the shocking, blessed coolness of the foaming water. “Be careful Aly. Give me your hand.” Nothing in her life now bears any resemblance to what it was before. No wonder they don’t know him. She doesn’t know herself.”(Highbridge, 1998, pg. 115: A Much Younger Man)

Book Details:
Title: A Much Younger Man
Author: Dianne Highbridge
Published: Soho Press, Inc.
ISBN: 1-56947-114-2

If you like: Fly on the Wall by Trista Russell and books on taboo, then you’ll love A Much Younger Man.

View all my reviews

Not your typical ‘Twilight’, review of Peter James’ ‘Twilight’ from ’91

TwilightTwilight by Peter James

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is not like the series Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. Twilight by Peter James was published in ’91 and is far darker and thrives on the fluid ability to write in flashbacks that draw up to the present. I’ll explain later. For now here’s the backdrop.

Sally Donaldson has just been buried. She was twenty three and pregnant, just got married. However some people, including the vicar or grave attendant,would hear scratching noises from the young woman’s coffin. Was Sally Donaldson buried alive?

Kate Hemingway, a reporter, tries to find the truth after stumbling upon the story and when she is there during the exhumation, what she finds is horrific and beyond all her nightmares. In the midst of this terrifying ordeal, an anesthetist is hung up on life after death and he is ruthless in finding out the truth of what happens when people die.

So this brings us to the story’s set up in general. The book begins with Sally Donaldson being buried and that in itself is quite hard to deal with. Even in fiction. For she was newly wed and pregnant. Then we are thrust into the 60’s with Harvey Swire and his dark depression over his dead mother and then he eventually gets into an accident, causing his soul or what he calls “consciousness” to float up from his body and this pushes him further on edge in his medical studies. What he does will probably shock you.

Each chapter focused on either Kate or Harvey, however the story converges together, making for a quick paced read; and although you can piece together who is behind the mysterious death immediately, I doubt that’s the point of the book. Peter James wanted us to see inside what we all want to know: Can we see through the glass darkly? Is it possible to reach a frontier in death and then come back to our bodies? Why is it that when some die and cross that frointier of the afterlife, they are told to “Go back, you’re not ready.”

The book was certainly a book to think about long after.

If you like: Robin Cook’s medical thrillers and the question of life after death then, you’ll love this book.

Book Details:

Title: Twilight

Author: Peter James

Published: St. Martin’s Press(1991)

ISBN: 0-312-08914-7

View all my reviews

The Write Web Asks: Do You Need Books/Textbooks Under $35?

I decided we all need a little help affording some books, so if you need them I found some thats dirt cheap I can sale to you. Go to “Connect with E.J” tab to contact me about these books. 


*Textbooks available including price and ISBN.(Books are either in good/okay condition or brand new and sold as is).

1. The Little Brown Handbook(9th Edition)-$10.00-ISBN: 0-321-10350-5

2. Thinking Mathematically(2008)-$29.00-ISBN: 0-13-175204-9

3.The World Today(3rd Edition)-$5.00-ISBN: 978-0470-89887-1 *Warning! This book was purchased with a few torn pages.

4. College World Atlas(2007)- $15.00-ISBN: 978-0-471-74117-6

Please email if you are interested in either of these books. Include in the subject line BOOKS. Pictures can be found on amazon by looking up the ISBN, pictures were too large to upload.