Monday, July 26, 2010

2 totally different books

So over the past two weeks I have managed to read a couple of read good and completely different books. First off I'm really bad at reviewing books that's why I haven't done it before, so bare with me.

Some Kind of Normal by Heidi Willis

All that stands between her daughter's life and death is a tenth grade education, a zealous group of baptist ladies, and 1.8 million Google hits.

What I liked best about the book is that Heidi has created such a unique voice in the main character Babs that it remined me of Perry in Patricia Woods book Lottery. It was distinct and fit the character so well. This book hit home for me as I have a few people in my family with diabetes including my 17 year old niece. I also related to the religious struggle that Babs goes through. I can't tell you how many times I've written a grocery list or a to do list in the middle of church. Overall I learned a lot about diabetes with this book, but wasn't hit over the head with so much information. That's why Heidi's book is being recommended by Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International. Yeah Heidi.

The second book I read and one that's completely different is The Body Finder by Kimberley Derting.

A serial killer on the loose. A girl with a morbid ability. And the boy who would never let anything happen to her.

First off I wouldn't recommend reading this book late at night when your husband is gone for the weekend and your home alone with two young kids. Needless to say I didn't get much sleep. Besides the great plot, fantastic suspense and gruesome crimes, what I liked most about this book is the romance between Jay and Violet It was a refreshing change from the whole love at first sight, obsessive relationship thing.

I highly recommend both books.

After reading these books it got me thinking. In your crit group do you all write the same or different genres, and what do you think is good or bad about either?


Laura Pauling said...

In my crit group, we write similar but different. We all write for kids but one is YA, another traditional fantasy, and me and the other one contemporary fantasy. I think it works well that way. We all bring different strengths.

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

As writers, I think we can give solid critiques of work outside our preferred writing genres. These days, most books seem to cross genre lines to some degree anyways.

Great post!

Tabitha Bird said...

Wow, those look like amazing books. I am especially interested in the second one.

Among those who read my work and those I read for we are all very different writers. Some are the same, but others are YA, historical, paranormal suspense you name it. I think it makes for a more well rounded view of your own work.

Jennifer Shirk said...

Very cool. Thanks for book info!

And in my crit group we all write romance-- but all different categories and heat levels within that genre. I think it works really well.

Michelle Davidson Argyle said...

Wow, thanks for these great reviews! I don't have a crit group, but with all my betas I write different work than they do. I always feel like an outcast. :)

Carolyn V. said...

We have different genres in my critique group. I love it because I get a whole different perspective on my writing.

I can't wait to read the Body Finder! I've seen it all over, but I really want to read it!!! =)

Jen said...

This was fun! I love The Body Finder and agree that's not a late night read alone, even YA can be terrifying!

In my crit group we all tell different stories, between adult and ya all the way to several different genre's but I think branching out from your own genre is smart!!!

PS Stella has been revealed! Come see if you're right!

Heidi Willis said...

Thanks so much for the shout-out, Patti! I'm glad you liked the book, and while it's been a slow build, there are some very exciting things in the works for it!

My crit group is widely varied, with one tradition MG, one fantasy MG, one crime writer, two fantasy YA,one straight YA, and me... whatever I am (literary fiction, I've been told). I LOVE the variance in reading, and although I'm the only one writing for adults, it's a great mix. And truthfully, most people read more than just one genre.

Like The Body Finder. Totally different than mine, but I loved reading it!

Elaine AM Smith said...

You did an excellent job of selling Body Finder. I'm going to have to track down something a little different. Hopefully, without the gruesome crimes.

patti said...

My crit group has dwindled down to one person!

Praise God, she writes Suspense, Romance, Women's Fiction, Literary Fiction!

Amazing, huh? I'm a tad green with envy.