Book Review: The Silent Wife by A.S.A. Harrison

The Silent WifeTitle: The Silent Wife
Author: A.S.A. Harrison
Published: June 2013
Publisher: Penguin Group
Pages: 326
From: Walmart
Rating: 8/10

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: what makes a good book good is how the author is able to dig into the minds of his or her characters and pull out the thoughts, the issues, what makes those characters tick. A.S.A. Harrison does just that.

The Silent Wife, Harrison’s debut novel, is grouped in with the psychological thrillers, novels written by people such as Stephen King and Gillian Flynn. However, I feel the novel should be categorized more closely to literary fiction.

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Girl on Fire: My education baby step is taken

[As seen in Creston News Advertiser, November 6, 2014]

Ice crystals flickered in the moonlight against the black paint of my car as I left my house and threw open the car door. I tugged my turquoise hat down over my ears, started the car and pulled out of my driveway, trying not to speed on my way into Creston. The blare of my phone still rang in my ears: a 6 a.m. structure fire.

I managed to catch Engine 2 before it pulled out onto North Sumner Avenue. We raced to the scene on East Townline Street before jumping out of the apparatus, grabbing tools and running around to the back of the house with the rest of the guys on-scene.

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Girl on Fire: Baby steps to further education

[As seen in Creston News Advertiser, October 30, 2014]

Thanks to the wonder that is Facebook, I’ve been able to keep up with what my high school and college friends have been doing since graduation. Many have gotten married and had babies, while others have focused on themselves and climbed the career ladder.

This got me thinking about what I want to do with my future. I’ve so many options, but only one sticks out to me right now: continue my education.

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Book Review: A Lion Among Men by Gregory Maguire

Lion Among MenTitle: A Lion Among Men
Author: Gregory Maguire
Published: 2009
Publisher: HarperCollins
Pages: 309
From: Barnes and Noble
Rating: 6/10

Author Gregory Maguire set the stage for (pretty much) all his future work when he published Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West. It can be hard maintaining that kind of celebrity, especially after such a popular book (turned musical). But, I think Maguire succeeds fairly well in the aftermath.

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Girl on Fire: I feel lucky knowing those in law enforcement

[As seen in Creston News Advertiser, October 16, 2014]

Recently, I met a man who had a very cynical view of the world. He thought everyone was out to ruin others’ reputations, and he certainly disliked any and all forms of law enforcement.

I will say I’m an idealist, but I’m also a realist. I want to see the world as an amazing place, where all people can go to college, jobs are easy to come by and a bright sun rises every morning. However, I also don’t pretend like things are really that simple.

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Book Review: Artemis Fowl: The Lost Colony by Eoin Colfer

Artemis Fowl: The Lost ColonyTitle: Artemis Fowl: The Lost Colony
Author: Eoin Colfer
Published: 2009
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Pages: 385
From: Walmart
Rating: 9/10

Eoin Colfer continues his adventures with teenage genius Artemis Fowl in the fifth novel of the series, Artemis Fowl: The Lost Colony. I love these books, and this one was no exception.

I may be an adult in my 20s, but sometimes those childlike adventures are really the best ones. Colfer succeeds in creating a completely new world in this Fowl adventure when demons start popping up around the globe from Hybras, their island lost in limbo.

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Book Review: The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness

Book of LifeTitle: The Book of Life
Author: Deborah Harkness
Published: 2014
Publisher: Viking Adult
Pages: 561
From: Barnes and Noble
Rating: 9/10

In any series, the last book stands up to the most scrutiny as it has to live up to the hype from those that came before it. Deborah HarknessThe Book of Life is no exception, and it stands up to the scrutiny well.

The last in the All Souls trilogy is a long, action-packed novel about the life Diana Bishop has made with her husband Matthew Clairmont, as well as how she’s come full circle from a historian who never used magic to one of the most powerful witches in the world.

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Girl on Fire: Why celebrations are good for local communities

[As seen in Creston News Advertiser October 2, 2014]

During the last weekend in September, Centerville hosts a local festival called Pancake Day. It’s similar to Creston’s Balloon Days in that there’s a parade and it focuses on one unique thing. In Centerville’s case, that unique thing is pancakes.

Pancake Day was started in 1949, and since then has grown into something truly spectacular.

Friday night the Centerville square plays host to a band. This year, and in previous years, the band was Standing Hampton, a talented cover band from Des Moines. The band played around a beer garden starting at 8:30 p.m., and the place was packed from the get-go.

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Girl on Fire: Cats are big, but fun, responsibilities

Pawter 2[As seen in Creston News Advertiser, September 4, 2014]

For those who don’t know yet, I recently got a cat. He’s a black and white thing, about a year and a-half old, and is named Pawter (since I’m a big Harry Potter nerd and love puns).

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Book Review: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Fault in Our StarsTitle: The Fault in Our Stars
Author: John Green
Published: 2012
Publisher: Dutton Books
Pages: 313
From: Walmart
Rating: 6/10

I love John Green. Ever since I found his first novel Looking for Alaska wherever it was that I found it, Green has been someone I’ve always thought was a perfect writer for teens.

Unfortunately, I did not read the middle books Green wrote, just his first and latest, The Fault in Our Stars. However, after reading the last one, I still believe that Green is the perfect teenage-book writer.

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