Monthly Archives: March 2011

Fairest by Isabelle

Sorry it’s so late, guys. I’m pretty sure I forgot today was Friday! :-\ Been one of those weeks. But I DO have something for you! Better late than never, right? ^_^

“Don’t touch anything.”

“I know, Mother. I heard you the first million times.”

“All we’re doing is taking inventory of Mrs. Wallace’s final belongings, then we go.”

“And leave them here?” Jamie lifted an edge of the old, dusty tarp, peeking underneath. Her mother slapped her shoulder.

“She doesn’t have any next of kin. There’s nowhere for it all to go.”

“So why take inventory? Isn’t that just a colossal waste of time if no one is coming to claim it?”

“The larger items, over in that corner, get sold at auction. I’m pretty sure they’re antiques. The proceeds go to the charity of her choice, which in this case,” her mother looked down at her clipboard and lifted the sheet of paper to look on the second page, “is a place that makes wigs for cancer patients who’ve lost their hair during chemo.” Jamie caught the expression on her mother’s face a moment before she could hide it.

“Why not just donate to cancer research?” Jamie asked, thinking her mother’s thoughts aloud.

“I don’t know, Jamie. I didn’t know Mrs. Wallace very well so I’m not going to pretend to understand her actions. All I know is that she highly valued personal appearance. More than once she chided me for not wearing ‘rouge and mascara’, her words. And she was horrified that I wore sneakers. Even at 94, the woman still wore heels. I mean, maybe she went with the old adage, if you look good, you feel good.”

Jamie shook her head and flipped her long black hair over her shoulder. “Whatever.”

They parachuted another dusty blanket over the third pile of junk they’d made in three hours. Jamie scrunched her nose and turned her face away. Her skin already itched. Her cheeks and forearms felt dry and sticky all at once. Gross. Continue reading

Jumping by Lisa

I made my first jump when I was ten. I was lucky that time, I was looking at a scrapbook of memories my mom had put together for my birthday, one with empty pages at the back that I would fill in on my own. I was spending a leisurely afternoon going over the pages and remembering the greatest events of my life as yet—focusing on a joint birthday party in my best friend’s backyard.

Before I knew what happened—I was there. Tumbling knees over shoulders and bruising my elbow on the foot of the big Oak behind Kacey’s window.

I freaked out, but ran home—Kacey lived just a block and a half away. I snuck into my own backyard, then knocked on the door, making a ruckus so that someone would let me in, since I knew it was locked. Mom gave me a raised-eyebrow and a “I thought you were in your room.” I lied and told her that I’d gone out to play with our dog, Flea, but locked myself out.

I ran up to my room and shut the scrapbook, hiding it under my bed. I didn’t touch it for months, but eventually I couldn’t stand hurting Mom’s feelings when she asked about it.

My second jump was not lucky at all. I was twelve, and my aunt had sent me a postcard from Italy. I was reading the back of it and I turned it over to look at the picture of ran my fingertips over the picture of the Colosseum, all lovely ruin and decay—suddenly I was pitching forward again, and this time the sun disappeared and I scratched up my palms and my arms on a dirt ground.

I lay on the ground for whole minutes with my eyes screwed shut, praying that I was dreaming and pinching myself as hard as I could manage. When I looked up, though, I was standing at the foot of the famous ruin, illuminated in a 20th century glory.

Continue reading

Silence in the Library by Isabelle

She caught sight of him in the doorway, leaning against the frame, hardly more than a silhouette in the quickly darkening twilight. “What are you doing here?” she asked, purposely keeping her attention on the archive machine, gathering the Professor’s notes and diagrams and imprinting them on the data discs for storage.

“I forgot my lesson plan,” he said in that rumbling voice that made her stomach tighten.

“Did you?” She tried to hide her pleased smile. “I was under the impression you carried the chip tucked safely away in the drive storage beneath your wrist dock.”

He straightened and stepped in further, walking into the late evening light that streamed through the windows. His lips curved just slightly, but his brown eyes shined with untold mischief. “Ah,” he said slowly, his gaze fixed on hers, “there it is.”

“What are you really doing here?” Continue reading

thephoneix’s bookbag: “The Iron Witch” by Karen Mahoney (a review)

A day late and a book review short. Okay maybe it’s been longer than a week since my last book review, but would you believe me if I said that I got lost in the bookstore. No? Yeah, I’m not sure how credible that excuse is, but it was worth a try. Well I did get some reading done in bits and pieces, which brings us to my reading list. I was supposed to be doing a review of Evermore by Alyson Noel, but I got distracted by another book and its gorgeous cover. I did mention I’m a sucker when it comes to a pretty cover right? This week finds me with a new author, Karen Mahoney, and her debut book “The Iron Witch.”

the iron witch book cover

The Iron Witch tells the story of Donna Underwood, who has spent her whole life feeling like a freak as she keeps at bay the nightmares of what happened to her at seven years old. At seven years old, her father was killed while protecting her from a vicious fey attack which left her with not only emotional scars, but ones on her hands and arms. Now seventeen years old, she’s found her sense of normal in the shape of her best friend Navin, while trying to balance her magical heritage as member of an order of alchemists. All too soon things start to happen, from meeting the new guy Xan as well as finding that that the fae aren’t done just yet with her.

Now this story definitely started off a bit slow for me, but once I settle in to the mythology that Ms. Mahoney was building it started to pick up speed. I was intrigued by the hints of the alchemists’ society and their war with the “dark outcast of Faerie.” There was a lot of world building, which was a major part of the book slowing down, but the potential of what was hinted at intrigues me to wonder just how great the sequel will be. From the twist on the old tale of the girl (maiden) with silver hands to the twisted wood elves to the actual main characters there was a lot to speculate about and enjoy. My only other problem was the haste that the plot was quickly wrapped up, but the ending definitely hints at there’s a lot more that’s going to happen. I give this one a solid B.

Hope to be back next week with my real review on Evermore by Alyson Noel. Here’s hoping I either A) don’t get lost in the bookstore again, or B) get enchanted by more gorgeous book covers. Let’s keep those fingers crossed alright. Also I’m thinking of doing a give away with some of these books that are currently taking up space on my desk. Thoughts?

Belief – Dialog Spine by Lisa

So the dialog spine is something I learned off of Scott Westerfeld’s blog over a year ago, when he and Justine Larbeleister (his wife, in case you didn’t know) were posting daily NaNoWriMo tips. It’s a short story told entirely in the voices of two people, no quotation notes or anything, just with one character in italics and the other in basic font. Westerfeld says he uses this to “clear out the cobwebs.” I like to use it for practice, and to get to know some characters, so here’s a little contribution for free-read Friday.


We can’t wait for her. You know that, right?

But the plan won’t work without her.

Then we’ll need a new plan.

I really don’t like this. How can we leave without her? After everything?

After everything? She left us. She left all of us—her duty, her responsibility, she walked away from all of it.

She wanted something for herself. Can’t you understand that?

None of us chose this life. It chose us. That’s always the way it’s been, since time was time. It’s how it always would be.

And you’ve never wanted anything different?

Continue reading

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