YA Review: IGNITE ME by Tahereh Mafi

Eventually I’ll get back to middle grade, but there have been a string of YA books in series I’m already reading that have come out in the last few weeks, and I have another one today. I originally picked up SHATTER ME by Tahereh Mafi because of Twitter buzz. Although I didn’t fall in love…

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YA Review: CRESS by Marissa Meyer

Have you ever read a book where you’re anxious to get to the end and so want to read it as quickly as possible, but at the same time you want to linger? That’s how I felt about CRESS by Marissa Meyer. I think the temptation to linger was enhanced by the knowledge that there…

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YA Review & Giveaway: SUITE SCARLETT by Maureen Johnson

I know many of my middle grade friends drop by here to check for an MMGM on Mondays. Today I have a young adult review instead, and it comes with a giveaway, thanks to the Scholastic Warehouse Sale. I’ve really enjoyed Maureen Johnson’s Shades of London series, so when I saw another of her books…

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Making Our Characters’ Crazy Actions Believable

Have you ever received the following critique? “I just don’t believe [character] would do that.” I know I have! (Actually, just this week on my WIP :)). And I’ve said it myself, too. It’s not about a character doing a crazy thing. I’m fine with that–as long as the writer makes me believe they would…

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YA Series Recommendation: The Liar Society by Lisa and Laura Roecker

First of all, happy birthday to my husband, Greg! We’re out celebrating today, but I promised to announce the winner today of the paperback copy of I SO DON’T DO MYSTERIES by Barrie Summy. And the winner is … Julie Deguia! Congratulations, Julie! I’ll be in touch to get your info. I also have a…

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How I Tackle Revisions, Steps 1 & 2

It’s been over a month since my last writing post and for very good reason–I’ve been taking the first step toward revising my work-in-progress: letting it sit. I’ve learned to set a first draft aside for at least a month. Often that’s hard to do, but with the holiday season, it was much easier. I…

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YA Series Recommendation: DIVERGENT by Veronica Roth

I came to this series later than most. I didn’t read the first book until September, but I’m actually glad because then I didn’t have to wait very long for the final installment. To be honest, I wish I could do this for all series–particularly those that deal in cliffhangers–but sometimes I get hooked in…

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YA Review: THE DREAM THIEVES by Maggie Stiefvater

I read the first book in this series–THE RAVEN BOYS–earlier this year, but when I finished it, I had a hard time putting into words what I liked about it. I think I’ve figured it out, so I’m ready to review the most recent book, THE DREAM THIEVES. While you should read THE RAVEN BOYS…

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MMGM: MILLICENT MIN, GIRL GENIUS by Lisa Yee

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I heard Lisa Yee speak at the Missouri SCBWI Conference. She was hilarious, and I was sure her books would be, too. Well, I started with her first–MILLICENT MIN, GIRL GENIUS, which earned the Sid Fleischman Humor Award–and am happy to share it as part of Marvelous…

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MMGM: EXILE by Shannon Messenger with a Giveaway!

It seems appropriate to come back from another break from Marvelous Middle Grade Monday with a review of EXILE by MMGM founder Shannon Messenger. And I have even better news: I get to meet Shannon tonight! She’s doing a signing at a bookstore five minutes from my house, and I’m taking along a middle school…

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