The Storyteller - Fiction Books!
Review by Jessica Dearborn
Tolucan Times / Canyon Crier - California
"The Storyteller, Volume I" by Martha Whittington
AuthorHouse, Paperback, 514 Pages, $24
When inspiration hits, it is usually followed closely by desire. A willingness to do
whatever it takes to explain your inspiration, to create a picture. For a writer, her
tool is her pen. Storytelling in and of itself can be quite a challenge. For example,
what are you going to talk about? What story are you going to tell? You must have a
beginning that truly grabs, a keeper climax in the middle, and a bring-it-all-back-
together-again, ending. And, the dialogue? you constantly find yourself asking,
"Do people really talk like that?" At that point you will either cringe, cry, laugh, or
simply allow yourself a few moments of madness as you do all of the above
mentioned, plus tear your only copy to mere scattered pieces of what used to be.
Foreboding as it may be, writing can also be individually and socially rewarding.
That is, if you should decide to tread through your insecurities and walk the
uncertain path to the publishing world. Many fear this path and will therefore, never
walk it. On the other hand, there are writers who are not afraid and not only do they
walk it, at times they skip. And this is due to having a few good stories to tell.
Besides, that's all a writer needs, anyway? a good story.
Martha Whittington has earned the right to tell her stories. She trekked around the
world in her early twenties, no doubt having her own adventures, making me
wonder where she has been and what she's seen during her travels. And with her
memories, experiences, and creativity, she has brought to the reader a colorful
novel filled with mystery and encourages every reader, with the turn of each page,
to utilize all of their imagination.
The author shares some of her tales in "The Storyteller, Volume I." It contains six
short stories titled: "The Fennigan Case," "A Unique Team," "The Hidden
Knowledge," "A Gifted Child," "The Witch," and "Sand." Although there is an obvious
lack of editing, and the language and grammar are careless, the stories are
compelling and are worth delving into. In "The Fennigan Case," two rookie reporters
are sent out on a last minute assignment that takes them through a walking
nightmare, and then they disappear. "A Unique Team" is centered on the
consequences of a man's choices. Within the pages of "The Hidden Knowledge,"
there is a teenaged boy who discovers he has a special gift that changes his entire
existence. In "A Gifted Child," a child is born with the kind of soul that when
combined with his discovered powers, he becomes less and less likely to be voted
as Mr. Popularity. "The Witch" is a tale of a malicious woman that terrorizes a small
town. And finally, "Sand" rejoices two brothers bond, and the perils they endure
throughout their travels. Whittington's storytelling ability is magical.
All the stories
are luring, some nail biting, and there are moments that are a little hair-raising. It
captures the readers' senses; inevitably questioning that in which you thought you
knew. Once you regain your composure, it's interesting to reflect on the story and
the characters that you've met. To assume you know where the story will take you is
na´ve. Martha Whittington is a naturally gifted writer and storyteller, and her work
deserves to be read and acknowledged. As for her courage of facing the unknown
world and the other world of publishing, she is fearless and inspiring.
In the summer of 2016, Curtis Dawkins, a felon who is serving a life sentence in Michigan for murdering a man during a botched robbery, got some unexpected good news. Scribner, one of the top literary publishing houses in the United States, wanted to publish his debut collection of short stories, and offered him $150,000.
When "The Graybar Hotel" came out last summer, he was praised as a gifted stylist whose stories illuminated the often overlooked lives of prisoners. The book was also a boon for his family: Mr. Dawkins directed the money into an education fund for his three children.
But his surprising literary debut also caught the attention of Michigan's attorney general, who now wants Mr. Dawkins, 49, to use his financial windfall to pay for his incarceration...
The Booker Prize Foundation has launched the Golden Man Booker Prize to mark its 50th anniversary. This special one-off award will crown the best work of fiction from the last five decades of the prize, as chosen by five judges and then voted for by the public.
The Golden Man Booker will put all 51 winners which are all still in print back under the spotlight, to discover which of them has stood the test of time, remaining relevant to readers today.
Barnes & Noble is trimming its staff, laying off lead cashiers, digital leads and other experienced workers in a company-wide clearing, CNBC has learned from sources familiar with the matter.
The news came abruptly for many workers who showed up Monday morning at various Barnes & Noble locations to be notified that they no longer had a job. The number of affected workers couldn't immediately be determined. As of April 29 of last year, Barnes & Noble employed about 26,000 people.
The American Library Association presented their annual book awards today.
The Newbery medal went to Erin Entrada Kelly for Hello, Universe (Greenwillow Books) and the Caldecott Medal to Matthew Cordell for Wolf in the Snow (Feiwel & Friends).
Nina Lacour won the Michael L. Printz Award for We Are Okay (Dutton Children's), and Angela Johnson won the Margaret A. Edwards Award for "significant and lasting contribution to young adult literature." The William C. Morris YA Debut award went to The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (Balzer + Bray), which also won the Odyssey audiobook award. Deborah Heiligman's Vincent and Theo: The Van Gogh Brothers (Henry Holt) won the Excellence in Nonfiction award, while Larry Dane Brimner won the Sibert Medal for distinguished informational book for the Twelve Days in May: Freedom Ride 1961 (Calkins Creek).
Jacqueline Woodson received the Wilder Award, honoring an author or illustrator whose books have "made a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children."
Renee Watson received The Coretta Scott King award for Piecing Me Together (Bloomsbury Children's), and Eloise Greenfield received the Coretta Scott King-Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement.
Former Hong Kong-based Causeway Bay Books manager Lam Wing-kei said during an interview with a foreign radio station on Tuesday that it is almost certain that he will open a book store in Taiwan and if the operation of the store is smooth, he will consider going back to Hong Kong to open a new book store.
Lam is one of five men associated with publisher and bookstore Causeway Bay Books who disappeared at the end of 2015 and reappeared in China a few months later. He said they were kidnapped by Chinese public security. The incident directed the world's attention to the issue of China's heavy-handed suppression of free speech and press.
More than 1,100 new words were included in the latest update to the Oxford English Dictionary's online edition, with more than 100 of them relating to parenting.
"Mansplain" also enters the dictionary for the first time. According to the OED, just 10 years ago the word did not exist, "but the verb (of a man: to explain something needlessly, overbearingly, or condescendingly, especially to a woman, in a manner thought to reveal a patronising or chauvinistic attitude) and the concept it describes now have a firm foothold in the language".
Gui Minhai, the Hong Kong bookseller and publisher who has twice been seized by Chinese authorities--most recently on January 20--is being awarded the International Publishers Association's Prix Voltaire for "his bravery in continuing to publish despite the risks involved."
The National Book Foundation today announced it will present the National Book Award for Translated Literature, beginning this year at the 69th National Book Awards in November. This prize, which represents a fifth National Book Award category, will honor a work of fiction or nonfiction that has been translated into English and published in the U.S.
The poet and author Helen Dunmore, who died in June 2017, has been awarded the Costa book of the year for her final poetry collection, Inside the Wave.
Dunmore, who died last year aged 64, is only the second posthumous winner of the book of the year category in the prize's history, after her fellow poet Ted Hughes won for Birthday Letters in 1998, and only the eighth poetry collection to take the top award.
Inside the Wave considers her terminal cancer diagnosis and impending death.
Fantasy author Ursula K Le Guin has died at her home in Oregan, aged 88. A prodigious author, her career spanned more than half a century. She won numerous awards including the Nebula and Hugo science fiction and fantasy awards, the Newbery Medal, and the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. In 2000 the US Library of Congress designated her a Living Legend for her contribution to America's cultural heritage.