Posts Tagged With: short story

Strange Weather by Joe Hill 🌪 BOOK REVIEW

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The Lost Sound

She sat on the porch and looked out over the big garden that stretched all the way down to the river that slowly passed by. Hopeful and waiting she studied each meter, but mostly she listened. Her ears were searching for that sound that had been with her for as long as she could remember. The one that made the green grass and the dancing river feel like her home. Minutes passed in silence, and every second that turned up without the sound seemed like a tiny eternity of something lost.

She wished for it to not be gone. For that day to turn over into the next where she would hear it again. Deep down though, she knew it had nothing to do with which day she listened for it. The silence had been there for days. Suddenly one morning it had just disappeared. She waited impatiently for it to return, but was waiting for something that never would be more than a memory.

A silent drop of salt water rolled down her cheek as she came to terms with the truth. She had grown older and ageing had robbed her.

She would never hear the crickets sing again.

©Christina de Vries

 

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5 Most Anticipated Releases of 2015

Soon summer will be over and gone for 2015, but don’t be sad! New books are about to be released!!

And today I thought I would share five of my most anticipated releases to come this year. If you find any of them interesting you can click on the cover photo and you will be taken to their Bookdepository page.

Let’s start with the first of the lot:

The Rest of Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

TROUJLH-hb-coverPublisher: Walker Books Ltd.

Publication date: August 27th, 2015

Pages: 352 (hardback)

Synopsis by the Publisher: 

What if you aren’t the Chosen One? The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever the heck this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death?

What if you’re like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again.

Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.

Even if your best friend is worshipped by mountain lions.

Why I look forward to it:

I’m not very familiar with Ness’s writing except for his book A Monster Calls (which I loved) but I’ve heard many great things about his work and this one sounded like a different and fun read.

Who doesn’t love an anti-hero story from time to time?

I’m hoping for an original and witty story.

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Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

9781619636040The fourth book in the Throne of Glass series.

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Publication date: September 1st, 2015

Pages: 656 (hardback)

Synopsis by the publisher:

Everyone Celaena Sardothien loves has been taken from her. But she’s at last returned to the empire-for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past…

She has embraced her identity as Aelin Galathynius, Queen of Terrasen. But before she can reclaim her throne, she must fight.

She will fight for her cousin, a warrior prepared to die just to see her again. She will fight for her friend, a young man trapped in an unspeakable prison. And she will fight for her people, enslaved to a brutal king and awaiting their lost queen’s triumphant return.

Why I look forward to it:

The Throne of Glass series captured me from the very beginning and the wait for this fourth book has been a long one. I listened to the first three (and the novella collection) on Audible and will do the same with this one. I can’t wait to dive back into this world and see what’s in stall for Celaena Sardothion this time around!

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The Marvels by Brian Selznick

9780545448680Publisher: Scholastic US

Publication date: September 15th, 2015 (October 1st for some regions)

Pages: 672 (hardback)

Synopsis by the publisher:

In this magnificent reimagining of the form he originated, two stand-alone stories — the first in nearly 400 pages of continuous pictures, the second in prose — together create a beguiling narrative puzzle.

The journey begins on a ship at sea in 1766, with a boy named Billy Marvel. After surviving a shipwreck, he finds work in a London theatre. There, his family flourishes for generations as brilliant actors until 1900, when young Leontes Marvel is banished from the stage.

Nearly a century later, Joseph Jervis runs away from school and seeks refuge with an uncle in London. Albert Nightingale’s strange, beautiful house, with its mysterious portraits and ghostly presences, captivates Joseph and leads him on a search for clues about the house, his family, and the past.

Why I look forward to it:

I’ve never read anything quite like this before. First half graphic novel and second half written novel. This is truly something new for me and I’ve heard great things about Selznick’s writing as well. People who’ve received ARC’s of this one is saying amazing things and I’m curious more than anything.

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Illuminae bu Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

9780553499124This is the first book in The Illuminae Files series.

Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf

Publication date: October 20th, 2015

Pages: 608 (hardback)

Synopsis by the publisher:

This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do.

This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto one of the evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she sworeshe’d never speak to again.

Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.

Why I look forward to this:

I love the concept of combining the written story with snippets of documents and pictures so that it feels like you’re a more involved part of the story.

The ARC’s of this one showed up on BookTube a while ago and I was instantly intrigued by this series. I’ve also enjoyed Amie Kaufman’s writing in the Starbound series so far (third book is out December 1st!) and can’t wait how this collaboration goes.

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The Bazaar of Bad Dreams by Stephen King

The Bazaar of Bad Dreams by Stephen KingPublisher: Hodder & Stoughton Ltd.

Publication date: November 3rd, 2015

Pages: 496 (hardback)

Synopsis by the publisher:

Since his first collection, Nightshift, published thirty-five years ago, Stephen King has dazzled readers with his genius as a writer of short fiction. In this new collection he assembles, for the first time, recent stories that have never been published in a book. He introduces each with a passage about its origins or his motivations for writing it.

There are thrilling connections between stories; themes of morality, the afterlife, guilt, what we would do differently if we could see into the future or correct the mistakes of the past. “Afterlife” is about a man who died of colon cancer and keeps reliving the same life, repeating his mistakes over and over again. Several stories feature characters at the end of life, revisiting their crimes and misdemeanors. Other stories address what happens when someone discovers that he has supernatural powers—the columnist who kills people by writing their obituaries in “Obits;” the old judge in “The Dune” who, as a boy, canoed to a deserted island and saw names written in the sand, the names of people who then died in freak accidents. In “Morality,” King looks at how a marriage and two lives fall apart after the wife and husband enter into what seems, at first, a devil’s pact they can win.

Magnificent, eerie, utterly compelling, these stories comprise one of King’s finest gifts to his constant reader—“I made them especially for you,” says King. “Feel free to examine them, but please be careful. The best of them have teeth.”

Why I look forward to it:

Stephen King is my auto-buy author. I love his writing and every time he releases a new book I’m instantly excited! I love short fiction and especially King’s collections and this will be an interesting read and a great addition to my Stephen King collection! Can’t wait!

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Now all I have to do is wait…….

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What are your most anticipated releases of 2015?

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My Own Writing Published

From time to time I enjoy a little erotica either in the form of short stories or novels. And after seeing the statistics around Fifty Shades of Grey (even though there are so many better alternatives out there in my opinion) we can’t deny that most of us do enjoy those words that has our hearts pounding a little harder.  I’ve been writing some short stories myself over the years but I’ve never sent them anywhere. Though about it many times, but wasn’t confident enough about my writing to have it leave the jungle of files on my Mac. But last year I decided that I would give it a go. I wrote a new erotic short story and sent it in with sweaty palms to Cupido. This was early in 2014 if I remember correctly.

I had it in the back of my mind a long while but as months went by and I didn’t hear anything I thought that it didn’t make the cut. Then one late evening in the summer of 2014 I got an email from the magazine where they apologized for the long process time but that they enjoyed my story and wanted to buy and publish it! First came the shock. I just couldn’t believe it! Then came the happy dance and the smile that would have gone all the way around my head if I didn’t have ears 😛

The one thing I remember the most from that moment was what my boyfriend said to me. He is so incredibly supportive about my writing and that makes me love him even more!

“This is the beginning!”

Those words really got me and I will never forget them. Some might say that it’s just an erotic short story, but to me it is so much more. It is my writing and my name making the cut and getting published. And yesterday I could finally see it in my print. There it was! On the shelves! A magazine with my writing in it! This might sound cheesy (and so be it) but I’m proud of myself for taking the chance, trying and making it!

This is the beginning and I look forward to sending in even more short stories and seeing where it takes me. I have some partly finished and some are still just ideas to erotica and other genres, but I’m really looking forward to working on them. Things are going slowly with the condition of my arm now a days but I’m getting new treatment now and I’m hoping it will do the trick 🙂

Thank you guys for reading and commenting here and on other platforms. You guys are amazing and I love sharing my journey with you!

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For those of you Norwegian readers in here, the issue of Cupido with my short story in it is out for sale now! You could also by the digital copy on www.cupido.no 🙂

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My True Love Gave To Me – REVIEW

My True Love Gave To Me is a collection of short stories by twelve different authors that have a winter romance theme to them.

My True Love BW's 65Let’s start of by mentioning all of the authors of this book:

Holly Black, Ally Carter, Matt de la Peña, Gayle Forman, Jenny Han, David Levithan, Kelly Link, Myra McEntire, Stephanie Perkins, Rainbow Rowell, Laini Taylor and Kiersten White. The book was edited by Stephanie Perkins.

So there are a bunch of authors in here that are in the wind these days. That combined with the gorgeous cover (both the American and the British one. I have the british cover) has made this such a popular book of 2014. And like so many others I chose to read this one around Christmas time.

I don’t read a lot of purely romance novels as I am a fantasy and science fiction kind of gal, but there are some fantasy elements and such in some of these short stories which made me really curious and made it a good read on my part.

I think I went into this one with a little too high expectations because of all the hype that’s been surrounding this book and I did end up a bit disappointed even though I really enjoyed some of the stories. That being said, I think it is amazing that so many fantastic writers can come together to do a project as this one. I love myself some short stories from time to time and I think it was a brave move for them to go all in with this one. Well done! I would love to see more of similar kinds of short story collections.

The stories that I enjoyed the most are:

  • Midnights by Rainbow Rowell
  • The Lady and The Fox by Kelly Link
  • The Girl Who Woke The Dreamer by Laini Taylor

This collection was definitely entertaining but I felt like it had potential for so much more awesomeness!

I ended up giving it a three out of five stars (maybe a 3,5). An easy and light hearted read to get into the Christmas spirit, just don’t expect too much.

3-stars-out-of-5

One of my favorite quotes:

“She wanted to be free, and if she could never be free, at least she wanted to be brave – brave enough not to sell herself, no matter what the payment, or the cost of refusing.”

 

-Laini Taylor

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Would you like your own copy of My True Love Gave To Me? Click on the logos below:

a.com_logo_RGB The_book_depository_logo

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Do you have any favorite short story collections? I would love to hear your recommendations 🙂

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A Beautiful Short Movie About Love!

This little movie touched my heart! As he tells the story of the women he loved in his past you get to go along on a travel of so many familiar feelings!

Truly amazing 🙂 Enjoy!

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Unsaid No More – A short story

She watched him. And while she saw him this now, she could see him in the when.

When they were younger. When they were more foolish. When they had no idea. When forever was in the making.

But sometimes, the forever you wish for ain’t the forever that you get. She thought as her hands trembled. Her back was getting clammy as her heart tried to calm itself down but failed at the attempt.

Without even touching him she remembered clear as day how the touch of his skin felt like. How his hand fit so perfectly into hers.

With just a twitch on his lip she could her his voice in her mind. How he would say those loving word in that special accent, and mostly she remembered how those words made her feel.

As if watching a movie about their past, memories flashed before her.

The littlest things. The late night phone calls. The way he stroked her back. How he would write her little notes. And how they enjoyed surprising each other.

The littlest things that might seem insignificant to others felt like the most vital in her life at that moment.

Oh! The things she wanted to whisper to him.

She had written them down. All the words that she had been afraid to say, but had never left her mind as the memory of him still stayed fixed.

She unfolded the paper three times and her writing came out to breath the fresh air. She started reading to the wind.

“All the nights we stayed up talking, the words would come for hours and hours. But now the words don’t come as easily anymore.

You used to talk about how you tended to flee from love in the past, and here I stand, ashamed of being the one who fled from us. 

I saw our future. 

Not one, but many possible futures. Some were wonderful, just thinking about them makes me smile. But too many of them ended with you hurt. 

I saw how history might repeat itself. 

I saw you! 

The most amazing person I’ve ever known, and the only person who’s ever really known the true me. 

I got scared and I ran! With tail between my legs I ran faster than I’ve ever done. For a long time I didn’t even dare to look back. 

But the thing about true love that I’ve come to learn is that it never really leaves. 

You can move on, body and soul, but somehow true love lingers in your heart forever. 

I wish I could have been the right girl for you. 

In many ways I was a perfect fit, but being a piece that fits doesn’t necessarily make it the right piece. 

I fled so that you could have an opportunity the real happiness and the absolute perfect love that you deserve.

I might regret it. Probably for the rest of my life. But as soon as I know that you’re as happy as can be, the pain will be worth it.

I love you, now and forever.”

The wind took a hold of her words, but were unable to carry them all the way. As the kind wind met his face it was just a wordless whisper.

She watched him from afar as her words were finally spoken. Then she folded the paper three times and turned her back to his smiling face.

One last time she looked at him over her shoulder and smiled when she saw him laughing. She had seen him that happy, more than once, and to see him like that again was all she needed.

 ©Christina de Vries

January 2013

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Just a Cup of Coffee – a short story

Just a Cup of Coffee

“The café was scented with chocolate, freshly baked pastries and coffee. Oh the heavenly coffee. At “The Coffee Bean” it has been rumored for years that customers get exactly what they need. If you had a broken heart they would serve you the perfect espresso milkshake with a special touch that put a smile back on your face, or the perfect chocolate mousse cake that would draw out those tears that you were hiding so that you could move on.”

After twenty years of business the place had gotten on more lips than their coffee. Andrea Fitz, a young journalist for the The Times was writing a piece on the place. With her office skirt and perfect white shirt she looked out of place in the colorful and relaxed atmosphere of the room.
‘So what is it about your products that makes this place famous?’
She had an arrogance and disbelief in her voice that would make you want to slap her, not really knowing why. On the opposite side of the table you would find the complete opposite. Elise, the shop owner was the cutest grandmother you could ever wish for. She was a petite, but curvy woman in her late fifties, always wearing colorful dresses, one or more flowers in her white and wavy long hair, and always with a smile on her face. Even when she wasn’t smiling the corners of her mouth somehow pointed subtly upwards. Somehow the air around her seemed sweeter than everywhere else. One would think that when her sweet air met the bitter air around Andrea it would somehow combust, but something completely different happened.
Elise sipped her tea from a big blue cup and sat it back down on the table with a big smile on her face.
‘We make everything with an extra dose of..’ leaning in as if to tell a secret, Andrea leaned in ready to hear it, ‘.. Love!’
‘Of course.. Love.’ Even though she almost whispered it while taking her notes, the sarcasm was loud and clear. Elise didn’t mind, her smile actually grew a little wider.
‘Are you sure you don’t want anything? A cupcake or a cup of tea?’
You can’t buy me. Was Andrea’s immediate thought before swallowing it. How did I get like this?
‘You really can’t write a piece about our humble coffee house without having a taste of what we have to offer.’
‘Maybe later.’ She tries to smile but it doesn’t feel right and looks less genuine. ‘Some say that you use some kind of magic in here.’ Elise’s laugh rolls light heartedly in the air. ‘Some even speculate in use of drugs after all the stories that has shown up through the years.’
‘I can guarantee you that we’ve never used any kind of drugs in here.’ she almost giggles in between words.
The air around them somehow shifted. Andrea thought she felt it but ignored it none the less.
‘And magic?’
‘There’s magic to be found everywhere.’
‘So you’re not denying it?’
With the pen ready on the notepad she’s waiting for the headline of her article.
‘You look like you could some kind of magic.’ Elise sips the last of her tea.
‘No. I don’t believe in magic.’ Her head filled with pictures of unicorns, green witches and werewolves. She doesn’t need any magic either. She’s engaged to Alex, living in a beautiful penthouse apartment and working because she wanted to not because she had to. It wasn’t everything she thought it would be but she was happy, sure she was.
‘What about when he gets angry?’ Elise asks with a curious look. Her eyes are met with a look of utter surprise.
‘Come again?’
All that arrogance and bitterness washed away from her voice.
‘And there’s another man that sneaks into your thoughts more than you like? Someone who could have been maybe?’
Colin’s face flashes into her mind and the pen falls out of her hand. Elise picks it up from the floor and lays it on top of the notepad. Andrea’s heart is racing and she’s panting.
No one knows about these things. How can she know?
She wants to yell it out to her in anger, but it comes out as in insecure whisper.
‘How do you know all this?’
‘Maybe it’s magic?’ She takes Andrea’s left hand in hers as if she really were her grandmother. It felt surprisingly comforting, but being scared and in confusion she pulls her hand back.
‘Who are you?’
Elise gets up and walks over to the counter. As she turns she’s holding a big pink cup that she brings back to the table and sets in front of Andrea.
‘There, there child. I’m just a silly old woman who’s seen history repeats itself too many times in too many faces.’ She cocks her head to her left and gives Andrea a little wink, ‘Have som coffee now. It’s on the house.’
A piece of Andrea wants to run for her life. Run away from this smiling witch, but she has a deadline. She needs to write that story.
‘What’s in it?’ her voice shakes a little.
‘It’s a peppermint cappuccino with a hint of white chocolate.’
It smells heavenly.
‘I can’t remember seeing that on the menu.’
Elise sits down slowly. There’s something in her smile that Andrea doesn’t recognize.
‘It’s a mouthful of truth hon. Do you dare to drink it?’
Andrea’s hands folds around the the cup. It warms her, makes her curious and even more scared. The cuckoo clock on the wall starts the first of its three cuckoos when her lips touches the pink porcelain.

Everything around her is too bright. She can’t see anything that’s in front of her. The feeling of dizziness and nausea overwhelms her. And as the surroundings around her clears up she feels a warm hand in hers. A strong hand. As she turns her head, the silhouette of a man turns into clear view.
‘Colin?’
His hand squeezes hers again. It feels so different than the hand she’s used to. It feels like love.
‘Who else would it be hon?’ He smiles that tender smile. The big confident one that always reminded her of a young Tom Cruise. ‘Your other boyfriend?’
He laughs at his own joke.
Andrea’s heart is racing faster than she thought was ever possible as she throws her arms around him and kisses him. The feel of him, the taste and the smell feels so familiar. Like no time had passed at all since the last time she saw him, almost a decade ago.
‘I’ve missed you.’ tears are pushing their way to the surface while she hugs him harder than she’s ever hugged anyone.
‘I’ve missed you too.’ He kisses her neck, just like he used to. Goosebumps tickles down her back. She remembers this feeling so well. She feels warm. Happy. She feels loved. It’s as if he read her mind.
‘What you’re feeling right now Andrea, that’s real.’
She sighs.
‘But this moment isn’t, right?’ his big hand strokes her left cheek with the love that she’d been missing. Then he shakes his head and talks in a low whisper:
‘No. This is what could have been if different choices were made.’ Andrea feels like she’s going to faint, uncertain if this still is the perfect dream or if it’s now turned into a nightmare, ‘You cannot make a new choice for that crossroad now. That one is in the past. But what you’re feeling right now, you can have that again. You just have to take a leap of faith and you have to go look for it.’
Colin kisses her one more time and she hears the cuckoo again.

The third cuckoo. She’s back in her seat. Back at “The Coffee Bean” where no time has passed at all. Her confused eyes filled with tears falls down on the cup of coffee. She only remembers the first sip and yet there it is, empty.
This time she doesn’t pull her hand away as Elise puts it in hers.
‘That bitter sweet after taste in your mouth is the truth. It hurts to know that your what if had a better outcome than the road you chose. Now you need to choose another.’ She then gets up and put on that happy smile and a light purple apron.
‘I’ll make you a new coffee to go.’
Andrea could do nothing but nod and whisper thank you.

“I came to The Coffee Bean not knowing what to look for, but found a jewel in this so ever lost city. It’s a place to clear your mind, and even if your going alone you’ll be in good company from a lovely and passionate staff.
The truth is there. And the truth is simple:
You never know what can happen over just a cup of coffee.

– Andrea Fitz”

Written by Christina de Vries, January 2013

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