by Mark Schreiber
GENRE: YA (crossover)
“Sixteen-year-old Iowa schoolgirl Amanda Dizon may be the nation’s most unremarkable teenager, until she falls down a well and finds herself instantaneously transformed from irrelevant to influencer. Mark Schreiber’s sly, rollicking masterpiece, Amanda911, follows Amanda’s escapades and sends up the craven, fame-obsessed virtual culture of today’s adolescents. As insightful as Dickens and as innovative as Heller, Schreiber is the definitive satirist of the social media generation.”—Jacob M. Appel, author of Einstein’s Beach House
Falling down a well was both the best and worst thing that ever happened to my granddaughter.
She was a Disney princess to me, but a comic sidekick to her classmates, who’d never been
kissed by a boy—or I suppose by a girl—been asked to a dance, or chosen for any role in a school production that did not conceal her face.
Most people under twenty probably don’t know what a well is.
Haven’t seen one. Probably think it’s just something you say when you need to buy time, like like, or when someone asks you how you’re feeling, although I guess these days everyone says good or OK, or nothing at all, opting for an emoji instead. Do kids even talk anymore, in the crowded loneliness of their bedrooms? Did Amanda even scream when she fell down the well? Or did she just send a screaming emoji?
So, when millions of kids all over the globe saw the headline, they shared via social media:
Girl Plummets Down Well
More than plenty had to Google well to comprehend its meaning.
I’m sure she got at least half a million hits just from image searches that returned a picture of an oil rig in the North Sea. Geez, her international peer group must have thought, or words or emojis to that effect. A girl has fallen thousands of feet smack into a tidal wave. I hope she’s more Kate than Leonardo.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Mark Schreiber was born in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1960, graduated high school at age fifteen and began writing novels full-time. Princes in Exile, which explores a prodigy’s struggle to accept his own mortality at a summer camp for kids with cancer, was published in 1984 and made into a feature film in 1991. It has been published in ten countries, received two awards in Europe and was shortlisted for the Austria Prize. Carnelian, a fantasy, was published by Facet in Belgium. Starcrossed, a rebuttal to Romeo and Juliet, was published by Flux and translated into French and Turkish. His illustrated science book, How to Build an Elephant, was published as an Apple app by Swag Soft. He has written over forty books and received two State of Ohio Individual Writer Fellowships. For the last seven years he has been a digital nomad, living on four continents. He currently resides in Costa Rica.
One randomly chosen winner via rafflecopter will win a $50 Amazon/BN.com gift card.
She’s the One Who Cares Too Much
(Book Two of the War Stories of the Seven Troublesome Sisters)
by S. R. Cronin
GENRE: Historical Fantasy
Coral, the second of seven sisters, has been hiding her affair with the perfect man until her older sister can get her life together. But the perfect man is getting impatient and now she’s gotten pregnant. Coral decides it’s time to consider her own happiness.
But what does she want? The perfect husband turns out to be less than ideal. She adores the small children she teaches but the idea of being a mother fills her with joy. Meanwhile, her homeland is gripped by fear of a Mongol invasion and she can’t stop crying about everything now that she’s with child.
Then a friend suggests the ever-caring Coral possesses a power well beyond what she or anyone else imagines. Does she? And why is the idea so appealing?
When Coral’s big sister loses faith in the army and decides to craft a way to use magic to save Ilari from the Mongols, she decides Coral’s formidable talent is what the realm needs. Can Coral raise a baby, placate an absent military husband who thinks he’s stopping the invasion, and help her sister save her homeland?
The wedding was only four anks away, and I’d wondered where I’d live afterward. I could stay with my folks, though married women seldom did so. I hadn’t figured Davor would look for a solution but he arrived one morning to announce he’d found a house for me he liked.
We rode to it slowly, in consideration of my pregnancy and the morning sickness that now lasted all day. When ee reached the cottage in the late morning. I loved it as soon as I saw it. It was small, but with a big covered front porch and large trees well cared for by a previous owner. Davor had hired workers to fix it up, as it had been empty awhile, and he was having furniture made to go in it. Furniture for me.
“Best of all,” he said “it’s less than ten minutes ride to your school. Do you think some of the older students, or perhaps your youngest sisters, would watch the baby for you while you teach?”
“You don’t mind if I keep teaching after the baby is born?” This was far better news than I expected.
“Of course not. I won’t be around much; you won’t need to care for me. And I’ve heard you’re uncommonly good with the little ones. I’ll put in a word, let them know how strongly I feel about your getting to use your talents. I think if I twist a few arms…” he gave me that charming smile, “… they’ll let you teach until you near your time to have the baby. Then you can come back after he’s born, whenever you’re ready.”
Well. This made my decision easier. I’d once thought falling in love with a man would be the most important thing in my life, but it now appeared Davor and I didn’t have to love each other for me to get almost everything I wanted. My own house. My own baby. A husband almost everyone else adored. The rare chance to keep teaching after my child was born. And my time to spend as I pleased.
Did it matter that I already knew our marriage would be a sham? It didn’t, at least not nearly as much as I would have guessed.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Sherrie Cronin is the author of a collection of six speculative fiction novels known as 46. Ascending and is now in the process of publishing a historical fantasy series called The War Stories of the Seven Troublesome Sisters. A quick look at the synopses of her books makes it obvious she is fascinated by people achieving the astonishing by developing abilities they barely knew they had.
She’s made a lot of stops along the way to writing these novels. She’s lived in seven cities, visited forty-six countries, and worked as a waitress, technical writer, and geophysicist. Now she answers a hot-line. Along the way, she’s lost several cats but acquired a husband who still loves her and three kids who’ve grown up just fine, both despite how odd she is.
All her life she has wanted to either tell these kinds of stories or be Chief Science Officer on the Starship Enterprise. She now lives and writes in the mountains of Western North Carolina, where she admits to occasionally checking her phone for a message from Captain Picard, just in case.
Author Social Media Links:
Author Blog: https://sherriecronin.xyz/
Book Series Blog: https://troublesome7sisters.xyz/
S. R. Cronin will be awarding a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.