Showing posts from January, 2017

Monday Musings: Birthstones Book Tag

I got this from Amanda , who got it from someone, who got it from someone, who got it from the original poster . The idea is to list a book or character who fits the associations listed with each month's birthstone. This should be fun. 1. January (Garnet): Associated with warding off negative forces and dark energies. Name a book with the darkest/evilest character you can think of. Seven Princes by John R. Fultz: The main villain of this book made me sick to my stomach. If I'd had the physical book for this, I'd have thrown it across the room. 2. February (Amethyst): Purple is associated with royalty. Name a book with regal qualities. You can base this off of characters or choose the King of all books. The Lord of the Rings : It's regal. It has kings. It is the king of fantasy. 3. March (Aquamarine): Washed out. Name a 'wishy washy' character, a character who is not strong or a follower. Georgiana from A School for Unusual Girls : She has very little dri

Saturday Snippets: Albion Apparent (January)

I had several people tell me they wanted to see more snippets posts from me after my last (and only) one . This is also a good way for me to keep myself accountable in writing.* If I don't write, there are no snippets to share with you. This post will also be a foretaste for those of you who have already asked me when the sequel to Albion Academy will be released. (The answer is I don't know; I am currently writing it. Once it's written there are revisions and edits, then sending it to beta readers, then revisions and edits, then sending it to the publisher, then revisions and edits. You get the idea. The publisher would like me to have it out a year from now, and I hope to meet that goal. When I know something more definite, I will post it here, there, and everywhere.) Beware! There are SPOILERS ahead for Albion Academy ! If you have NOT read/finished the book, don't read this post yet. You have been warned. Without further ado, here are some snippets from this mo

Monday Musings: Goldenhand Review

As I mentioned Thursday, I recently finished reading Garth Nix's latest (though I hope not his last) installment in the Old Kingdom series, Goldenhand . Set in the aftermath of Abhorsen  and immediately following the novella "The Creature in the Case"* (published in the collection Across the Wall ), Goldenhand tells the continuing story of Lirael and Nicholas Sayre. As Nick is recovering from his latest encounter with a Free Magic creature and Lirael is adjusting to her new life as both an Abhorsen-in-Waiting and a sister to the reigning queen, a mysterious messenger descends from the north with an urgent message that could change the lives of everyone in the Old Kingdom. Goldenhand is told for most of the novel through two points of view: Lirael/Nick (depending on the scene and chapter) and Ferin, the messenger from the north. What impressed me the most about the book from the very first chapters was that Garth Nix did more than just write a sequel to Abhorsen;

ThrowBook Thursday: Sabriel

I've mentioned my love of Garth Nix's Old Kingdom series a couple of times in the last few weeks, including on Monday's listing of my favorite magic systems. Since I recently finished reading the latest book in the series, Goldenhand , I thought I would take a look back at the book that started it all: Sabriel . After a brief but thrilling prologue,  Sabriel begins with the titular character at school in Ancelstierre, the thoroughly unmagical kingdom to the south. She has been away at school for most of her life in order to keep her safe from the necromancers and Dead creatures that have been rampant in the Old Kingdom (to the north) since the disappearance and death of the Royal Family 200 years before. An unsettling messenger from Sabriel's father sends her into Death (to hear the rest of her father's message) and then into the Old Kingdom to take up his role as Abhorsen, the Charter mage and necromancer tasked with keeping sorcerers, necromancers, and the D

Monday Musings: Favorite Magic Systems

Last Tuesday, Amanda Bradburn asked me about my favorite magic systems, so I thought I would talk a bit more here about what magic systems are my favorite and why. What do I mean by magic system? Basically, any book, film, or TV series will have its own take on magical or supernatural power and how that power works -- who can (or cannot) wield it, what can magic do (or not do), what a given power's weaknesses and limitations are, etc. This understanding of magic, in its totality, is what I mean when I say magic system.* Some systems -- for example, Allomancy in Brandon Sanderson's Mistborn series -- are so thoroughly detailed that you actually have a systematic view of magic in play when reading the book. Others -- such as Narnia or Harry Potter -- leave far more to the imagination than they do to the schoolbooks; their focus is less on how the magic works in small details than in the larger story.** * It should be noted that (while brilliant in their own right) Sanders

Book Sacrifice Tag

Arielle tagged me in the Book Sacrifice Tag, and it looked like fun, so here we go. #1: An Over-Hyped Book Situation: You are in a bookstore when the zombies attack. Over the loudspeakers you hear the military announce that over-hyped books are the zombies' only weakness. What over-hyped book will you chuck at the zombies? Go Set a Watchman should not have been published. It's based on (or is) an early draft of what eventually became To Kill a Mockingbird and it should have been left to rot wherever it was dug up from. Harper Lee thought it had vanished and never said she wished it hadn't. It isn't a good novel, and it is a tarnish on Harper Lee's legacy. #2: A Sequel Situation: You are caught in a torrential downpour and you're probably the type who melts when you get wet. What sequel are you willing to use as an umbrella to protect yourself. Clariel by Garth Nix. It's technically a prequel, but it was the first *new* book in the Old Kingdom serie

Watercolor Wednesday: The First Stroke

Welcome to the first edition of Watercolor Wednesday at Inexhaustible Inspiration! I am excited to share my fumbling beginnings in this art form with you all. The first two paintings this month are actually postcards. Yes, you can buy watercolor postcards  to paint and send to your friends! Merry Christmas!  These were painted with  Artist's Loft watercolors  and I have to say I like the way these paints work. They have a very opaque look on the paper when painting wet on dry (that's wet paint on dry paper, as opposed to wet on wet when the paper has been dampened before the paint is applied). I'm happiest with the green I was able to mix up with the blue and yellow, though I was a bit dismayed to discover that the red I selected for some of the lights on the tree dried a pale pink. Oh well. I've warned you all about my love of puns, right? For this one, I was able to find a red that stayed red when it dried. I tried to be clever with the e

Monday Musings: New Year, New Books -- The Books I'm Most Anticipating in 2017

This was originally going to be a Top 10 Tuesday, and then I realized I didn't quite have 10 books for the list, so it's a special Monday Musings where I anticipate the books I'm most looking forward to being released this year. Beren and Luthien by J.R.R. Tolkien and Christopher Tolkien This one's not new in the sense of being new material so much as it is collecting all the previously published material on this iconic couple into a single volume. This makes me very very happy because The Silmarillion is amazing as a whole, but Beren and Luthien's story is one of a handful to actually get several mentions in The Lord of the Rings . Even Sam knows about Beren taking the Silmaril from Morgoth. Just saying. Releasing May 4 The Heart of What was Lost by Tad Williams This is a bridge novella to set up the trilogy The Last King of Osten Ard and follow-up the original Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn . I loved the original trilogy, and I've been waiti

Albion Academy Cover Reveal!

It's time to reveal the cover for Albion Academy ! This is something I've been sitting on for a couple of months now, and I'm happy to share it with all of you. The cover was designed by Susan Krupp  and I couldn't be happier with it. That's great, you say, but what's the book about? Glad you asked. Is a Djinni just a trickster? Can a wizard only learn magic? Must a Valkyrie always ferry the dead?  For Mortimer, Merlin, and Bryn, it seems the fates have already written the ends of their stories. When Mortimer asks unorthodox questions, the Djinni Elders exile him to a human school of magic—Albion Academy. Merlin's friendship with a mortal only increases his mother's determination for him to live up to the heritage of his ancestors. And Bryn's prophetic sisters outright declare that her fate is tethered to Mortimer, Merlin, and the mysterious door in the school's basement.  As the three of them struggle against the constraints o

Top 10 Tuesday: Good Wizards

Welcome to the first Top 10 Tuesday of 2017! This week's topic is good wizards. (Note: I'm using wizard in the same way I do in the Albion books -- a general term for magic user of any gender.) This was a surprisingly difficult list to draft. But without further ado, and in no particular order, here are my Top 10 Good Wizards: Moiraine Damodred Moiraine may not be the strongest or the wisest of the magic-users in Robert Jordan's 15-book epic The Wheel of Time , but she is one of the best. She guides our young heroes on their journeys, even seemingly from beyond the grave. She doesn't brook nonsense and chooses to serve the world rather than herself by finding, guiding, and protecting the Dragon Reborn instead of remaining at court. She doesn't even hesitate to take on the Forsaken, even at risk of her own life. Despite a books-long absence, Moiraine remains my absolute favorite character from this series. Gandalf/Olorin The Grey Pilgrim. The White Ri