Monday, January 31, 2011

What's on the Nightstand? #8? Witch and Wizard

    It's been a few nice evenings of needed mental rest thankfully. The snow didn't materialize last week as predicted, the hubs is feeling better and I am anxiously waiting to get back to my writing. All around, lots of positive. Taking a break after finishing a rough draft is not an easy thing, necessary, but not at all easy. I tend to have to force myself to put it down and leave it alone. When the tank is empty though, nothing good pours out no matter how much I want it to.
    The major drawback to this is when I'm not actively writing, my sleep is terribly disturbed by dreams. Not so much nightmares, though there have been a few, but just vivid dreaming. My nightstand is littered with post-its in the mornings from me waking up and needing to put the dreams on paper. Sometimes it looks like my youngest wrote it instead of me. I like to think of these nocturnal irritations as my creative tank being refilled. I have the best intentions of allowing myself two weeks to rest but it usually only ends up being about five days before the dreaming starts to grate my nerves.
    To pass the daytime, I chose one of the books my oldest got for Christmas for my reading this week. It's a small book by my standards and I finished it in one afternoon. Considering who wrote it, I thought it might be best to peruse the work before my kid read it just to be careful.
    I think of James Patterson as mainly a adult fiction writer so I was leery of my kid asking to read these books at first. For this piece he's partnered with Gabrielle Charbonnet and this is my first experience with Charbonnet's work. From what I understand though she's quite the accomplished author.
    There are two published books in this story so far, "W" Witch and Wizard and "G" The Gift. After reviewing the jackets in Books a Million, they sounded very interesting. Oldest Son was thrilled.
    I completely enjoyed this book and it was exactly the rest my brain needed, uncomplicated while still being extremely interesting. The flow was smooth, stimulating and expertly designed. I found my mind being drawn to line after line easily.That's my favorite kind of reading. There was no forcing myself to read any part of this book. But I expected nothing less from Mr. Patterson.
 Whit and Wisty Allgood, brother and sister, are teenagers growing up in a strange and quickly changing world. The story is set in a very changed present where their most important task used to be staying out of detention and getting good grades but now it's surviving after being torn from their home in the middle of the night and thrown in prison, accused of being a witch and a wizard. A government upheaval has turned the world as they know it into the confusing and scary system of Ones run by the New Order's leader, The One Who Is The One.
    This unusual kind of verbiage was difficult for me to wrap my brain around at first but after the first chapter I got it. Actually, I recommend you read the "Excerpt of New Order Propaganda" in the very back of the book before starting the story. The words that are strange are defined there and that helps a lot.
    Wisty is my kind of girl, sharp, witty and hardheaded. But what fifteen year old girl with red hair wouldn't be? Behind all that tough girl is a girl who loves her family but is scared out of her wits.Almost eighteen year old Whit on the other hand, is a wonderful character and one I didn't expect at first. He's actually my favorite. Their relationship gives me the mental picture of fire and ice. He's a well built and handsome boy, almost a man who's soft and sweet on the inside. All the while, he's totally unaware of how awesome he comes across to the opposite sex. Is there anything better? This was a wonderful read and one that I would recommend as a reader and parent. 
Till then,

The subject of a Time magazine feature called, "The Man Who Can't Miss," James Patterson is the bestselling author of the past year, bar none, with more than 16 million books sold in North America alone. In 2007, one of every fifteen hardcover fiction books sold was a Patterson title. In the past three years, James has sold more books than any other author (according to Bookscan), and in total, James's books have sold an estimated 170 million copies worldwide. He is the first author to have #1 new titles simultaneously on The New York Times adult and children's lists and is the only author to have five new hardcover novels debut at #1 on the list in one year—a record-breaking feat he's accomplished every year since 2005. To date, James Patterson has had nineteen consecutive #1 New York Times bestselling novels, and holds the New York Times record for most Hardcover Fiction bestselling titles by a single author (56 total), which is also a Guinness World Record.
From his James Patterson Pageturner Awards (which rewarded groups and individuals for creative and effective ways to spread the joy of reading) to his website (which helps adults find books that kids are sure to love) to his regular donations of thousands of books to troops overseas, Patterson is a lifelong champion of books and reading. His first foray into books for all ages was the critically acclaimed Maximum Ride series, which debuted on the New York Times bestsellers list at #1 and remained there for twelve straight weeks. The series has so far made appearances on The New York Times bestsellers lists ninety-four cumulative times, proving that kids of all ages love page turners. He captured the attention of boy readers with the Daniel X series, and his third series for readers of all ages debuted in December 2009 with Witch & Wizard, which spent five consecutive weeks atop the New York Times bestsellers list.
Patterson is the creator of the #1 new detective series of the past dozen years, featuring Alex Cross and including the Hollywood-adapted "Along Came a Spider" and "Kiss the Girls," starring Academy Award-winning actor Morgan Freeman. He is also the creator of the #1 new detective series of the past five years, featuring Lindsay Boxer and the other members of the Women's Murder Club, from which the ABC television drama series was adapted. He has authored books behind six films on the Hollywood fast-track, including the upcoming Maximum Ride movie forthcoming from Avi Arad, the producer of X-Men and Spiderman.
He is the author of novels—from The Thomas Berryman Number (1976) to Honeymoon (2005)—that have won awards including the Edgar, the BCA Mystery Guild's Thriller of the Year, the International Thriller of the Year award, and the Reader's Digest Reader's Choice Award. And, he has won a Children's Choice Book Council's Children's Choice Awards "Author of the Year" award (2010).
One of Forbes magazine's Celebrity 100, James made a guest appearance on the popular FOX TV show "The Simpsons" in March, 2007. ( Bio)
 To follow Mr. Patterson's work and find out more visit his website
To learn more about Ms. Charbonnet's work, visit

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