Five Fiction Books That Changed My World

woman reading

Without further ado, here is the list!

  • 19 Minutes by Jodi Picoult, is hailed as a “raw and important work” about school violence. A teen is picked on mercilessly and eventually becomes something to be very afraid of. This book opened my eyes up to the seriousness of bullying.

We all know it is serious business, but Picoult wrote the story from an angle that felt as if many voices were speaking at once. I learned that writing with care and the art of research is important in any story.

This particular series follows a five thousand year old blonde vampire named Sita who we are supposed to hate, but I couldn’t help but relate. She is depicted as fully human with her own struggles and enemies.

I am not ashamed to say I cried a little. Perhaps because of the series ending and not necessarily what happens in the end..? Bottomline: If a vampire story can make me cry, then it was a good darn book. Also, if I can empathize with a wicked vampire, I can empathize with anyone, right?

  • Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews– need I say more? With Lifetime cranking out the books to television and Andrews’ books continue to pop up at Walmart, Bookstores and online in an unending ghost written foray, these books remain popular.

This book was probably one of the first books to keep me up at night.

There I was, 12-13 years old reading a gothic fiction about children being left in an attic so long that confusion, incest and other problems arose. That book made me understand that sometimes family is just in blood only. Anyone can hurt you.

Flowers in the Attic is one of those richly dark travesties of literary treasure and genius.

  • Seed to Harvest Series by Octavia E. Butler was a masterpiece. Still is. I bought the thick tome off of Amazon one year, maybe 2011, and dived right into it.

Patternmaster/Seed to Harvest, dates back to pre-slavery Africa where Anyanwu is gifted with shape shifting abilities, while Doro can literally jump his spirit self into other bodies. It awakened my own need to write sci/fi this good. It reminds me of the “Black” version of X-Men, but so deliciously written.

  • The Station Series* by Trish Marie Dawson gave me chills and sweet thrills. This book showed me that writing about a sensitive topic such as suicide can be dealt with using fantasy, research and great insight(and an amazing author!). In the series, Piper Willow dies and wakes up at The Station, where suicides go and become mentors and volunteers to people on earth who are considering suicide. The goal is to prevent people from committing suicide in the first place. Romance was high in this series too.

It gave me a new perspective on death in general.

It is not the end but a new station in existence. No one has the concrete answers but fiction allows us to play with what the answers could be.

Those are the five books which have changed my life in some way.

*The link will take you to a free Kindle copy of Dying to Forget, Book 1 in the station series.

**Affiliate links are sprinkled through this post. This simply means the link will take you to a site where you can learn more about the product and if you purchase anything I will receive coins for it. I appreciate you!

Please post your comments here and like or subscribe if you like the content. Thanks again to all of you reading and clicking around on my blog.Without

These posts are for you, the ultimate bookworm or writerworm 🙂

‘Ain’t Gonna Be the Same Fool Twice’ by April Sinclair(a review)

ain't gonna be the smae fool twice, yellow book covers
Ain’t Gonna Be the Same Fool Twice by April Sincalir

Book Details: Ain’t Gonna Be the Same Fool Twice by April Sinclair

Published: Open Road Integrated Media(1996)

Cover Design: Kat Lee(for ebook version)

ISBN: 978-1-5040-1866-1

Read on Freading app

4.5 stars

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Keywords: African American-Human sexuality-college age-Chicago-San Francisco-Women’s Studies-Lesbianism

Book quotes yellow background
Designed by Ericajean using Canva

April Sinclair has done it again with Ain’t Gonna Be the Same Fool Twice, her follow up to Coffee Will Make You Black.

Jean Stevenson or “Stevie” has left high school with hopes of becoming a journalist while also still exploring her sexuality and how it could connect to her being black in the 70s.

In high school, she crushed on a white nurse(In the first book) and began questioning herself then, even though she had sex with a boy before. Even in college, Stevie dates men but soon she realizes there is more to her relationships than just sex. Racism, religion, and politics become a part of the stretching fabric of her life.

Stevie eventually finds herself in a few female relationships and she calls it “experimenting” yet those who care about her wonder if she is sure about any of her decisions. Recalling quotes from a loving grandmother and living in San Francisco with a homosexual hottie named Sterling, Stevie will need to muster all the courage and common sense she was taught just to survive.

My Reaction:

This book was just as good as the first! If you are someone who shies away from topics like lesbianism and racism with a dash of politics, then you may want to run. I am not into politics or sexuality topics like either, but the story was good.

A lot of Stevie’s experiences, sadly, has not changed in reality for 2016.

For example, when Stevie begins dating an attractive white female, they are stopped by the police and the police assumes Stevie is a black male and never once looks at her, he constantly asks if her girlfriend is okay. Unfortunately for Stevie, her white girlfriend is only offended when he calls her “ma’am”. This is Stevie’s crucial eye opener to the climate of the times she is in.

I enjoy Stevie’s personality and her wise mannerism to a degree. She can come off as scathing and wishy washy at the same time; most moments and even with a scathing, stern personality, she can become a rug for someone else even when she knows better. Her friends left much to be desire. I cared for no one really in California. The portrayal of the city she was in was one where people hold on to inhibitions, freedom and weed, but let go of sense and sensitivity.

All  in all I give this an exceptional rating. It was a perfect follow up to Coffee Will Make You Black.

Okay, bookworms! Would you ever read a book like this? What are some books you loved that had very sensitive topics for you? Discuss below and remember to share this post with your friends!

Book Spine Poetry: Silence Breeds New Breath

#BookSpinePoetry

Book Spine Poetry!

For those who do not know, I am happy that Nicola and MindandLifeMatters decided to share with us the beauty of searching book spines titles to inspire poetry.

Here is my attempt, inspired by books I want to read and have read. Enjoy!

Silence and Beauty-

The Day We Met.

Anything More Than Now,

When Breath Becomes Air

Water Dance and My Form of Bliss(Days 3 & 4 Photo 101 Challenge)

Books on my bed, in my head…everywhere. Electronic, print. Whatever…

My Bliss?  Books and Teddy Bears!
My Bliss? Books and Teddy Bears!

A Constant state of bliss on my hand and heart….

Photo taken by Erica using Kodak EasyShare M340
Photo taken by Erica using Kodak EasyShare M340

Yes…Water Dances.

Water Dance Captured using Kodak EasyShare M340
Water Dance Captured using Kodak EasyShare M340

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! 🙂

Christians and Versatile Writing

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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.

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…

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!)

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= written 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?