Miss Selaine-ious
John Rain: Against All Odds PDF Print E-mail
Written by Selaine Henriksen   
Tuesday, 30 December 2014 18:01

I couldn't help myself! I've written a John Rain fanfic for Kindle Worlds here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RKJR13S It's a true fan fiction, written with love, and attempting to give JR back everything he's lost.

 

 

Fifteen years after John Rain was last in Kawamura Midori's apartment, his suspicions are aroused when he's summoned to her place by Tom Kanezaki. If Tom has figured out the relationship between Rain and Midori, and means to use their son as a bargaining chip, Rain will throttle him as quick as he can, despite their years of friendship. Instead, John Rain could never have prepared for what he found: the ghost of his blood-brother, Jimmy Calhoun. Reunited, Rain and Jimmy have to work together to save their sons. And Rain finds out that family is the toughest task-master there is.
Feedback welcome!
Last Updated on Tuesday, 30 December 2014 18:06
 
Prince Lestat Anne Rice PDF Print E-mail
Written by Selaine Henriksen   
Sunday, 28 December 2014 01:46

A new batch of Christmas books to work through. I read "Prince Lestat" first since it's been a very long time since I read the Vampire Chronicles and I was curious to 1) know how the story progresses and 2) see if her writing is as good as I remembered. I have to say the writing itself felt repetitive..."the most exquisite melody"....her radiant beauty...etc. It's always the most of the mostest. The POV jumps from character to character which I didn't care for. The only time the story came alive is when Lestat narrates.There was no intensity like in the first few books, no sense of poetry and of using this story of vampires to open discussions of religion, of life, of progress.

I still love how Anne Rice shows how life is so much better now than it was then. How, in the West, we have the time and the well-fed means with which to enjoy books, movies,etc, much less create them ourselves. Our lives are much less brutish and short. I liked, too, where she ended the story. In my own head-canon, I've thought vampires are also God's creatures, as any creature on this planet is (if you're religious and believe in God, that is). I liked how she let her characters come to that sort of conclusion themselves.

And, naturally, she's left the door open for a continuation of the story. What are the chances everything will go smoothly for Lestat? Is the thingy going to try and leave him, killing him in the process? Are they going to disagree and Lestat likely have to, essentially, fight himself?   Although the writing feels a little tired, a little check this Anne Rice-style box, I would read on. Because she did create the Anne Rice- style box and I remember when I read the first books and how wonderful they were.

 
Worst.Person.Ever Douglas Coupland PDF Print E-mail
Written by Selaine Henriksen   
Tuesday, 02 September 2014 16:07

Laugh out loud funny. Silly, coming-of-age story, except men coming-of-age is now in their thirties, apparently. Loved the ending.  The protagonist here is an awful person and yet we like him, root for him as everyone else seems even more ridiculous. My only caveat is that I didn't get why any other character in the story liked him. It was just a given. It's hard to be funny on the page and Coupland pulls it off with consistency throughout.

 
Sisters in the Wilderness: The Lives of Susanna Moodie and Catherine Parr Traill by Charlotte Gray PDF Print E-mail
Written by Selaine Henriksen   
Tuesday, 02 December 2014 23:34

It has taken me a while to find how I want to review this book. On the one hand it is a heart-breaking story of pioneer suffering and courage, on the other it is an almost modern tale of women with literary ambitions and their trials and tribulations within the publishing world. Both sisters needed money. They did what they knew best - write - but even then publishers took advantage and, while they made money, the sisters earned pennies.

Part of why Susanna's story, in particular, I find hard to review is that I feel she could be me, she could be any number of women I know now, one hundred and eighty years after Susanna Moodie arrived in Canada. Growing up in a wealthy family she and her sisters only obligations were to educate themselves (and marry well). That's the part that seems modern; they would have been well-educated and encouraged to use their intellects. If they had been farmers to start with they wouldn't have suffered as much as they did.

The umpteen sisters were competitive with each other in their literary ambitions, which is part of what drove them on; the other part being the incessant need for money. If this book were a 'fictional' memoir or a Hollywood-style movie, we would have a happy ending: After their years of toil they finally achieve success and financial freedom. They did achieve fame; their books well received by the public, but not the financial success they needed. And, none of their goals were met, in terms of what they wanted by coming to Canada. They hoped for a place where they could replicate the lives they had as children; instead their own children barely attended school. Their lives were never easy and their deaths were hard, too.

What it is, is a story of perseverance, of will-power. Right in the opening pages we're told that the maxim of Thomas Strickland, Susanna and Catherine's father, was 'Persevere and you must succeed."  Unfortunately, within their own lives they never saw success. Being remembered almost two hundred years later is good, right?  It reminds me of the Dr. Who -  Eleven -  episode wherein Van Gogh gets to come forward in time and see how he's seen nowadays. Brought tears to my eyes because he struggled so hard (read "Dear Theo: The Autobiography of Vincent van Gogh"). Ultimately, there is no satisfying moment to which one can point and say - there, that made their suffering all worthwhile!

In summary, not exactly an up-lifting story. But well worth it to read about two women, modern in their sensibilities and literary ambitions, forced to deal with the "barbaric savagery" of Canada in 1834. That they managed to get any writing done at all in the face of the never ending daily grind puts paid to any modern writer's complaints of never having enough time.

 

 
Just One Evil Act Elizabeth George PDF Print E-mail
Written by Selaine Henriksen   
Friday, 03 October 2014 12:38

I love reading Elizabeth George's prose.It's like sinking into a soft, welcoming mattress. However, there were a number of problems with this book. I didn't understand Lynley's attraction/pursuit of the roller derby vet. Why does he persist? It feels forced. As did Barbara's single-mindedness in destroying her career. I kept thinking she'd find something, prove something that showed she'd been right all along, but things went too far and it didn't feel right to note that she could never be allowed to just carry on as usual after her disobedience. I can only hope EG has a plan for her that'll be good.

 
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