Book Wrap Up – June 2018

book wrap up june 2018 books diary of difference

Hello All! And just like that, it’s the beginning of July. I can’t believe that half of the year has passed. It somehow went so fast for me and I don’t even know how!

I have made a lot of progress reading a lot of my books, and I still have a huge list of books still waiting for me to read and review. You can see below a list of the books I read this month, and if you want to read a more detailed review, click on the links.

 

Here is what I have read in the month of June:

 

 

I greatly enjoyed this historical fiction. An interesting story about a man that does everything he can to try and save his wife from dying. Even if that means trying to find the secret item that one time belonged to the great wizard Merlin, from the time of King Arthur.

 

  • Cryptid by Michael Kott (paperback) – ★★★

 

I was a bit disappointed by this book, and I enjoyed the first book of this series more (Piasa). However, I truly believe that it might be interesting to some of you, as it covers the plot of how one young lady struggled through everything in life and in the end manages to find herself and be happy.

 

 

To all the lovers of Harry Potter out there – I loved this book, and you’ll love it too. I listened to the Audible version (P.S. – if you create an Audible account now, you get one audiobook for free – here’s the LINK). This is my second audiobook that I have listened to, and I really enjoyed it. A whole description about the rules of Quidditch, the most famous teams, and also the World Championship, with Rita Skeeter and Ginny Potter as reporters! So cool

 

I have won this Children’s book on a giveaway hosted by BookLikes. I don’t usually read Children’s books, and this one was quite interesting. I liked the story behind it, but didn’t really enjoy the illustrations. I think, especially with the young audience, it’s a key factor to have interesting illustrations.

 

 

A very interesting and unusual (in a good way) book, that tells a story about a nun that tries to fix a time travelling machine. It was a surprisingly refreshing read for me, and I did enjoy it, even though it’s not actually my cup of tea. The author, Jay DiNitto, was also kind enough to do an interview with me, and you can read more about it here.

 

 

An ARC provided to me by NetGalley. Unfortunately, this book did disappoint me. I expected more romance and more Alzheimer’s disease related content, but it didn’t deliver. Falling Short is a story about a lady that tries to find herself, and her mother is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, and somehow, it turns out that her father actually might be alive, and she goes on a journey to try to find him, and also find herself as well.

 

Advertisements

Interview With Jay DiNitto, Author Of Pale Blue Scratch

First of all, Jay DiNitto, thank you for taking your time to do this interview with me!

 Jay DiNitto is the author of Pale Blue Scratch, a wonderful story about a nun and her apprentice, and how they try to make a time-travel machine work.

You can download and read Pale Blue Scracth for free here.

 

Jay DiNitto, author, writer, interview, pale blue scratch , book books review, blog, diary of difference diaryofdifference

Where do you get your ideas from?

Most of the time, I get ideas from other stories, either from books, movies, or games. I don’t do this in the sense of stealing ideas wholesale, but most story ideas come from exploring how I would write a story or character different after consuming other stories.

 

Where did you get your idea for Pale Blue Scratch?

I was toying with the premise of an odd couple-type pair of sleuths trying to track down a scientist in trouble, where one of the sleuths really believes the scientist’s work is legitimate but the other sleuth doesn’t. Some of that was inspired by the Sherlock Holmes stories.

I also wanted to incorporate the philosophical idea of our senses being almost-infallible sources of knowledge. What if it clashes with scientific or practical knowledge? How is that reconciled?

I liked the idea of using religious figures as central characters, where they aren’t the scheming Big Bad or the abusive authority figure that fired up the rebellious protagonist. I took cues from what Umberto Eco did in The Name of the Rose, and The Father Dowling Mysteries (yes, I watched those). The “two guys” motif was too close to Holmes, so I changed the sex of one of them. At first it was a monk and a teenage girl, but that pairing was too unrealistic for me, so I switched them to a nun and teenager on his way to manhood. Also, I switched their personalities: the religious/teacher figure is the wild risk-taker while the teenager is the bookish, play-by-the-rules type. Their personalities are unusual but they aren’t out of control; I think too many fiction writers are careless with human behaviour and really go crazy with basically rewriting the human psyche.

I was reading a lot of anarchist writings (and watching Firefly) and came up with the “contractual society” setting. How would it work if there were no nation-state? How would roads, law enforcement, or laws themselves, work? I have interests in alternate history and alternate technology settings, so that played into the plot.

 

How do you deal with a writer’s block?

I don’t, really. I normally don’t force myself to write; I do it when I’m ready. I work full time and have a wife and kids, so that’s enough of a “block” as it is. One trick I’ve learned, regarding books, is to stop a writing session in the middle of a scene I particularly enjoy, so I have some motivation to return to it soon.

 

What does your writing process look like?

I’m middle-aged, but a young writer, and I don’t have a professional schedule, but I can describe the process for my new project (we’ll call it Project X).

I played around with premises a lot. Since so much has been addressed before and I want to make sure I’m writing about something that hasn’t been overdone. Once the premise is there, I’ll have some scene ideas, bits of dialogue, or philosophies I want to represent that go along with the premise. I like Elisabeth’s character, so Project X is another book with her in it.

For Project X, I wanted to have a society that mirrored the kind of society the ancient Hebrews lived in, in Old Testament times, so there’s a lot that has to go along with accommodating that plot point. From all those ideas I form a coherent chain of events, which eventually become chapters. From there, I’ll write summaries for each chapter before I start the actual first draft.

The biggest hurdle, especially with Project X, is determining who knows what, and when they know it. There’s lots of secrets and manipulations, so keeping characters in the dark and slowly revealing things to them takes a lot of organising.

 

How do you select the names for your characters?

Honestly, I don’t spend a huge amount of time on character names or their significance. For Pale Blue Scratch, Elisabeth takes on her religious order’s name, so a great part of her character and profession reflects that. Other than that, I normally don’t attach too much significance to names unless the story demands it.

 

Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find?

Not particularly, but in Pale Blue Scratch there are a few references to the game Chrono Trigger, which is also about time travel (though actual time travel isn’t a big part of the book). If you’re familiar with the game you’d be able to spot them.

 

You can find my review of Pale Blue Scratch HERE!