Book Review: The Giver

I finally found time over vacation to read The Giver by Lois Lowry. She’s also the author of Number the Stars, one of my all-time favorite YA novels. The Giver also won the Newberry Award, and I was eager to read it (certainly no small amount of buzz over it, since the release of the movie, which I haven’t yet seen). But overall I’d have to admit that I wish I’d liked the novel more than I did. It didn’t live up to its hype for me. Though the novel is well written and offers a lot of interesting social commentary in the context of an imagined future world, I struggled to get through it. Jonas’s world is certainly not one where I would like to live, and perhaps that’s one reason why I didn’t enjoy the novel. It certainly isn’t a “happy” story. Here is Publisher’s Weekly summary: In the “ideal”…

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Where Am I on the Next Novel?

The next novel is written. So where am I in the process of publishing it? For me, writing the novel is the easiest part, though finding writing time is always a challenge. Revising is the hardest part because I tend to be a perfectionist and sometimes work and rework a scene over and over again before I think I’ve got it right. Then even after I think I’ve got it right, I’m later not happy with it and want to do something else. Or I have an ending in mind, but then a new idea dawns. When new ideas spring forth, I write them all down and then give them time to simmer in my mind. Whether I choose to use them isn’t an easy process. A novel literally has thousands of moving parts. If you tend to be an indecisive person, novel writing may not be for you, because every chapter,…

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Book Review: Ends of the Earth by Tim Downs

Book Review: Ends of the Earth by Tim Downs

Book Summary Nick Polchak must stop a terrorist from causing a global ecological nightmare. Two beautiful women from Nick’s past are competing for his heart. He’s not sure which impending disaster makes him more nervous. When forensic entomologist Nick Polchak is called to the scene of a murder on a small organic farm in North Carolina he is astonished to find that the victim’s estranged wife is an old friend, a woman he once worked with, a woman he once had feelings for. When she asks Nick to investigate her husband’s drug-related murder, Nick seeks the assistance of Alena Savard, the reclusive dog trainer known to the people of northern Virginia as the Witch of Endor.Alena jumps at the chance to renew her relationship with Nick, but when she arrives in North Carolina she discovers that she’s not the only woman who has her eye on the Bug Man. Soon Nick…

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Is a Standing Desk Right for You?

Is a Standing Desk Right for You?

Realizing that I’m not getting any younger and hearing the remembered words of my chiropractor that my biggest problem affecting long-standing neck and back issues is that I sit too much at my job, I decided to seriously pursue using a standing desk in 2015. This video might help motivate you to consider doing the same. I literally spend more than fifty hours a week in front of a computer. I could feel myself getting older by the hour with chronic back pain, neck pain, and stiffness. It was time for a change. If you’ve done any online research about ergonomics, you’ll discover that standing desks are a hot topic. And once you start researching them, you’ll find quite a variety of styles and prices. Some range from cheap make-your-own varieties. Others can cost literally thousands of dollars. The options can be overwhelming. And yes, nobody wants to stand all…

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