Book Review: One Boy No Water by Lehua Parker

Book:  One Boy, No Water
Author:  Lehua Parker
Pages:   185
Format:  Hardcover, paperback
Publisher:  Jolly Fish Press
Book Source:  Provided by Publisher
Category:  Youth Fantasy
Style:  Easy, conversational style with lots of Hawaiian pidgin usage

Synopsis from GoodReads:

On the surface, despite his unusual allergies, Zader is an average eleven year old boy with typical challenges of fitting in with his peers, getting into a good prep school, and maintaining his relationship with his surfing crazed brother. In reality, Zader is Niuhi, a shark with the ability to turn into a person. As he matures and begins to adapt to his “allergies” in ways that make it easier to live a normal life, Zader’s world begins to turn upside down—he will not only have to come to terms with who he is, but what he is. . . . more

My Take:

What is the recipe for a really big hit in children's literature?  Below, I list what has been proven to work in the past.

  • Make the protagonist a defacto orphan.  Kahana, an aging, skinny Hawaian steeped in the ancient ways, finds a baby boy out on a reef just hours after birth and convinces his great-niece (who has just given birth to a boy herself) to adopt him.  They name him Alexander Westin and call him “Zader” for short.  Surrounded by a loving, supportive family cannot make Zader anything but a fish out of water.

Book Review: Hearts That Survive: A Novel of the Titanic by Yvonne Lehman

Book:  Hearts That Survive: A Novel of the Titanic
Author:  Yvonne Lehman
Pages:   432
Format:  Paperback, Kindle
Publisher:  Abingdon Press (March 2012)
Book Source:  Publisher
Category:  Historical Fiction
Style:  Conversational prose, engaging, original plot

Synopsis from GoodReads:

On April 15, 1912, Lydia Beaumont is on her way to a new life with a boundless hope in love and faith. Her new friendship with Caroline Chadwick is bonded even more as they plan Lydia 's wedding on board the grandest ship ever built. Then both women suffer tragic losses when the unsinkable Titanic goes down. Can each survive the scars the disaster left on their lives? . . . more

My Take: 

Although the beginning starts off like a typical Titanic novel, the story morphs into a compelling tale of regrets, hiding life-changing secrets, and love.

The story begins with Lydia Beaumont, wealthy heiress to a railroad company. She is accompanied on this trip by Craven Dowd, president of her father's company, and John Ancell, poet and maker of toy trains. The first, her unsaid intended; the second, her secret love. Craven is calm, cool, collected, and pretty much Lydia's 'keeper'.

Due to an unplanned moment of passion, Lydia finds herself pregnant. She tells John, who truly loves her and proposes marriage. They decide to get married on the Titanic—truly a wedding fit for a princess. Not knowing of the child, Craven reluctantly agrees to support the marriage, knowing that Lydia's father would never agree.

Guest Post: Laura Besley on Writing Flash Fiction

Today's guest post is from my flash fiction guru, Laura Besley.  Originally from the UK, Laura currently lives in Hong Kong where she teaches English as a second language.  She is a published author, her short story "Dear Sylvia" can be found in As We See It:  Hong Kong, by the Hong Kong Writer's Circle.

Laura maintains a blog, Living Loving and Writing, wherein she shares the flavor of Hong Kong and the product of her flash fiction adventures.

Find my review of As We See It: Hong Kong and an interview with Laura here.
  —A Chaotic Mind

And now, our feature attraction:

Little and Often — How Flash Fiction can help you improve your writing

by Laura Besley


Flash Fiction is the new kid on the block, so to speak, and the definition isn’t yet 100% concrete, but basically it’s a piece of fiction that is really short. Flash Fiction is usually between 250-1000 words, but I’ve personally set my limit at max of 500 words (no minimum). Due to people’s increasing lack of time and the fact that it can easily be read on an iphone or ipad, the popularity is growing.

On 4th May 2012 I started a writing challenge: to write a piece of flash fiction every day and to put ‘the best of the week’ up onto my blog on a Friday and that’s how, for me, Friday Flash Fiction was launched.

Featured Book: The Cinderella Project by Stan Crowe

Book:  The Cinderella Project
Author:  Stan Crowe
Pages:   212 (estimated)
Format:  Kindle
Publisher:  Breezy Reads (August 27, 2012)
Book Source:  Publisher
Category:  Sweet Romance
Style:  LDS romance with substance

Synopsis from

Committed to saving his marriage before it starts, doctoral student Nick Cairn embarks on a project aimed at finding the secrets of everlasting love. But when Moire DeLanthe, a smart and sassy research assistant, enters the picture, his Happily Ever After is put to the ultimate test. . . . more

My Take:

I have a confession:  I thought this was going to be an, err, breezy read—the kind that takes me one afternoon to read.  Chocolate for the soul.  It's not.  So, I didn't finish it in time.  However, with what I've read, I really like this book.  It's not a set-aside-for-a-while book.  It's a savor until the end book (thus far).

Alas and alack, I committed to do a stop on Breezy Read's blog hop today, so here's my not-ready-for-prime-time review.  The blurb doesn't tell too much about the story line, so I'll share.

Follow me to Living Loving and Writing

Hey, y'all!  Check out my guest blog post today over at Living Loving and Writing, a blog kept by my friend and published author, Laura Besley.

You can also read an interview with Laura, as well as a review of the anthology As We See It:  Hong Kong here.