Like I usually do, I scroll the comments and see other people’s opinions. To be honest, I think more people are upset because many of the “gritty” books coming out deal with the current political and racial tension we can feel in the air.
The commenters, bless their hearts, really did not respond to the change of literature, going back to the era of the “real”, they mainly focused on quivering in their boots because now they have writers who are not interested in fake monsters but the real evil in the world teens and adults must face.
Gritty books are simply mirrors of the times. The writer goes on to mention Judy Blume’s classic, Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret as a timeless classic about a girl who wonders about God and goes through puberty, jealousy and other events fresh to teens.
Do we really need ghosts for that one? Or vamps? Or any other supernatural element?
I think what Bellafante aimed for in this report, is to have us compare our childhoods with the literature we read then, versus what children read and experience now. The novels have gotten grittier these days.
Let’s play Devil’s Advocate now.
I like gritty tales, but I like supernatural books too. Anything fantasy and speculative, I enjoy.
Is it possible that speculative fiction can explore the beauty and dirt of growing older too?
In the world of Harry Potter(I never read the books, just watched the movie-sorry!), Harry Potter grows up and experiences first love, crappy “parents”, all kinds of evil, but it is amidst the backdrop of sorcery.
Same with Hunger Games and Divergent(I read Divergent). Those are Dystopic novels that are not really fantasy but more speculative- speculating on what could happen. To me that seems pretty plausible, given the current state of true hungry people out here having to fight to live.
All I am saying is, I have no problem with real stories for real teens. We can have escapism at any time, but I long for the mirror too.
I review lots of books in many categories. From Teen Fiction to Sensual Romance, yet Christian Fiction holds a very special place in my heart.
I hope that after reading this list, you would consider reading some Christian titles yourself.
Reason #1: The Sweetness of It
Under the category of Christian Fiction, you find these beautiful, lovely books about a more simplified way of life. I don’t know why I am drawn to them. I fell in love with Amish Fiction when I read The Englisher by Beverly Lewis. Romance in a time of simplicity is a sweet diversion from what I usually read.
Reason #2: A Better Alternative for Any Faith
If you’re like me, then picking the right book can be hard when you are in the faith. Again, I review a bit of everything and I do mean everything.
These small books of no more than one hundred pages, are very powerful and uplifting and perfect for church libraries!
Reason #3: Every Age Can Enjoy the Books.
Tired of having to sift through books to see what your children can read without muddying their minds?
Christian Fiction typically offers books that are “clean”. This means even in the teen category of Christian Fiction, the books are pretty much acceptable. Most address serious topics with rawness and caution at the same time.
One particular speculative fiction I enjoyed was Captives by Jill Williamson. In fact, the book could be in any category not just Christian Fiction because it is so futuristic, full of action, some romance, and reminds you of the Hunger Games just a bit.
I fell in love with that book and am tempted to read it over again…
Reason#3: Gothic…Sensual, Pick Your Flavor.
In recent years, certain Christian authors have appealed to wider audiences and some even linked with secular writers to create unique stories.
One of my favorite Christian Fantasy/Paranormal authors is Debbie Viguie. I fell in love with Kiss of Night and Kiss of Death as well as her addicting Crusade series co-authored with Nancy Holder.
Julie Lessman has a similar superpower, but hers is honed in the art of passion. I fell in love with Lessman’s writing beginning with A Passion Most Pure.
She is unashamed in capturing the raw love a man has for a woman, his touches, his kisses, the taunts and banter- I love it! Currently, I am reading Book 2 in the Isle of Hope Series, Love Everlasting.
Another interesting writer of contemporary and historical books, is Lisa Tawn Bergren, author of the Northern Lights trilogy(I absolutely adored that series!)
Reason #4: You Can Even Have Smart Fiction
When I think of Smart Fiction, I think of writers like Tosca Moon Lee.
She takes historical pieces we’ve been told and then with her incredible writing talent, shows us what could have happened.
I was in a Christian bookstore one day, years ago, and I remember seeing this scarlet, paperback book lying on a shelf called Demon: A Memoir.
I was like, “What inspirational bookstore would carry that?”
And knowing me, I had to have it.
I bought it and read it.
Then re-read it.
Talked about it. Couldn’t believe how mysterious and potent it was.
Then I read her book, Havah: The Story of Eve. Iscariot. Books, that only she could write.
Let’s not forget T.L. Higley. I remember staying up really late reading her historical novels like Garden of Madness, City of the Dead, Guardian of the Flame, and a few others worth reading. But it began with Shadow of Colossus.
The books I’ve listed does not preach at you. They are well written stories by people who have a faith in God. Their stories are built upon their faith, yes, because what is in a person comes out, but the books are creative and entertaining like any other.
Probably more so than some books out here.
Some authors of note for you to check out whose works I have enjoyed:
Victoria Christopher Murray
Please Like. Subscribe. Share and comment. Thank you!
The N Word (From Race to Redemption Series, #1), Tiana Laveen
Amazon Digital Services(Aug. 8, 2015)
Read on the Kindle App
Never have I felt a stirring of emotion— good emotion, tragic emotion for a White Supremacist- Ever, until I read Tiana Laveen’s the N Word.
That is just the first thing I love about the book.
The second is her great knowledge of history and psychology and the dynamics of long distance relationships and yes, the sexy tidbits as well.
So, the story is about Aaron Pike, a white guy with a lot of pride in his culture doing time for beating a black man into a coma and now he has to see a counselor and explore all of his demons. And believe me; Aaron has a lot of demons.
This dude’s mind is scarier than his actions. Trust me.
Meanwhile, the beautiful Mia Armstrong, teacher and volunteer at the prison decides to do the unthinkable: Make contact through letters with Aaron Pike, not truly knowing who he is and he not knowing who she is.
He does not know she is black.
But through their correspondence, it opens up a dam of pain, of anger, of possibilities…and it is those possibilities that keep you on the edge of your seat. The sizzling letters Aaron and Mia send each other. The subtle mind assassination they give each other, the poems…
I am so in love with this book and wish to tell more because this book is deep. It is about more than two people getting to know each other through one of the oldest forms of communication.
It begs the question:
Who are we really?
I will be reviewing Book 2: Word of Honor, really soon!
Wattpad may be the best social app for writers and readers out there, but don’t be discouraged or surprised if you find your works aren’t being read and as popularized as others.
I have learned quite a bit about Watppad within the last year and even though I really enjoy the app, it is not something that is working for me at the time. Perhaps you are thinking of posting up free stories on there too and so hopefully this quick guide can help.
Published or Unpublished, Unleash it on Wattpad
One of the first stories I published on Wattpad is Weight and See. I began it sometime around February 2016 or March?
By the end of June 2016-roughly three months, I had at least 800+ reads and quite a few comments. From one reader.
It was not a story I published previously, just one I wrote off the top of my head and I uploaded it weekly. Finally, I took it down and published it on Smashwords where currently it has 1,071 downloads.
What was the secret?
After not even getting a burp on Wattpad, I finally decided to tag my book properly. It was a teen fiction first and foremost, that happened to have romance in it. Also, I tagged it according to location, serious matters, and as general fiction. That may have helped.
Either way, I was jealous of teen writers with 1.5k reads and likes…
One Wattpader decided to upload an already published novel for free and she grabbed more fans that way.
Teen Fiction Rules in that Domain
Are just two of many who have made their debut on Wattpad and are now publishing mavens with agents.
Both are in high school.
Some Wattpaders who are adults, write teen fiction and if they achieve the right voice and audience, make it big.
My favorite Wattpad author(including the gifted ones above) is LD Crichton, who writes new adult and teen fiction.
Not into writing for the much younger, pubescent audience? That is quite alright. Wattpad has many categories you can sift your writing chops into, just take note that right now Wattpad is dominated by the teen fiction category.
My opinion is that when Wattpad first began, teens took to it more and faster.
It is social media after all and you read free books all day long. Even I like that idea. You can literally type a whole book on your phone and upload it right after.
The Wattpad App, Technicalities
Yes. Wattpad is great.
The app is proclaimed as magical.
Yet there are some bugs Wattpad need to fix.
First of all, I was working on a teen fiction the other day and decided, “Let me write this on my mobile phone. For a new writing experience. Should be fun.”
And it was.
For a day.
Next thing I knew, I published my chapters and one was missing.
Wattpad warns you to never delete a story or even part of it because you cannot undo it.
So I did the “unpublished” then “re-publish” thing. Still not working.
I copied my chapter on my Android phone, and deleted the story. That way I can just copy to a new empty chapter- start over right?
Nothing worked, nothing showed up. I deleted part of my story. I will never see it again.
Wattpad needs to fix this. Allowing Wattpaders to delete their story while giving a few days before a story is deleted permanently, is a better solution.
What Writing Platform is Working for Me?
Right now, Smashwords is awesome for me. I complete the manuscript, edit and upload it and the readers pour in faster than on Wattpad.
Just like Smashwords, Wattpad has an algorithm. You must use proper keywords, tags, update regularly(Smashwords prefer you post multiple books if you want to see great results), and an awesome cover and blurb.
I may use Wattpad again one day, I will definitely read stories on there now. But it is definitely too “loud” to be heard. Even with their writing contests, it has been rumored that those who are already popular on Wattpad may get chosen over you.
My advice? Try them all out. See what works best for you.
Patience is also the key, which is why perhaps I should have kept my teen fiction on there, seeing as people have requested a part 2 now.
Good luck to you all and let me know of your experience!
Warning! Do not read this book near a gas station! This story is sexually explicit and with serious matters that may be uncomfortable for most….
Beast is the remastered, incredible modern day fairytale about Lt. Christopher Jameson a.k.a. Beast, a marine born with a severe facial deformity. Ashleigh Marie Dalton is what you would call “bodacious” with a very pretty face but slightly overweight.
When Beast meets Ashleigh, the combination of their stories and souls collide into something beautiful, heartfelt, and strong.
Beast has a lot of love to give.
I could not put the book down. I have read several really good books this year so far and I will say with confidence, Beast stands on top of the rest. Number one, the characters are so real I literally miss them, the passion and erotic scenes between Beast and Ashleigh are enough to cause firestorms, and the story deals with real issues.
Ashleigh is superficial, but she comes from a superficial family. When she meets Beast, her reaction to his very powerfully built body is instant and understandable and her slight repulsion to his facial deformity, is also, sadly understandable.
Beast is such a shy, sweet man! But he does not play around when it comes to courting the woman he is attracted to and even though Ashleigh is overweight, her beauty is undeniable and her weight has never been a problem for him.
I really enjoyed the hot scenes…sorry. Had to say that. The book definitely gets five star rating for that and also for storyline.
Quote: “She was so little…well she was a big girl, but in his arms she was dwarfed…His arms tightened protectively around her.”
Finally, what I absolutely loved about the book was that there were a few serious issues addressed and fleshed out pretty well. I will not say what those are, but Ashleigh and Beast have childhoods that weren’t so pretty.
Little Nuances: There were some cases where the author misspelled a character’s name and maybe just a couple of grammatical/spelling errors, but certainly not enough to turn you away from this powerful read!