Next Up For Review

Next Up For Review
The Center Cannot Hold, Elyn Saks

Monday, June 13, 2011

Sci-fi For the Masses

I feel as if summer hit the Windy City & the sun stole my writing chi. Is that possible? Nah, not really. I think It was more likely the college boy coming back, the loss of my daily driver to teenage employment & the fact that this particular allergy season leaves me goopy yet drained on a daily basis.
At any rate, I have a book review & a few other tidbits for ya'all, so sit back, relax & read.
1. Ambasadora by Heidi Ruby Miller
If everyone told you love wasn't real, would you still be willing to die for it?

Sara Mendoza and Sean Cryer are.

In their multi-partner, caste-ruled society, love and jealousy are considered emotional fallacies, nothing more than fleeting moods and sentiments biased by hormones. Relationships and conceptions in this world obsessed with celebrity, beauty, and power are based on DNA and lineages...or should be. But not everyone believes in the ruling traditions of the all-powerful Embassy. A quiet rebellion prowls the dark underground of this shiny world where techno-militants calling themselves fraggers grow in numbers and bravado. The Embassy intends to silence the fragger movement before the heresy of equality spreads throughout the system.

Sara Mendoza is part of the Embassy's plan. Captured, tortured, and falsely accused of treason, she is given a chance to win back her freedom. She only needs to charm information from one of the fragger leaders, then kill him. But by the time she figures out the Embassy's intel is flawed and that Sean Cryer is her true mark, she's already in love with him.

Sean knows why Sara is on his ship from the start, but as a lonely, anti-social doser, he doesn't value his life, only his ideology within the fragger organization. Against his better judgment, he becomes her protector, each day caring more about a future he was always afraid to hope for.

Cover: B
I Like it. It works. The colors scheme stays true to the story (I know that sounds weird, but it's true). I picture Sara Mendoza as having the beauty of Angelina Jolie, with the kick assitude of Scarlett Johansson in Iron Man II. The girl on the cover doesn't quite do that for me...but it's good.
Story: A+ 
I love this book! What you need to know about me: I don't like sci-fi-at all. I sat through every episode of Star Trek the Next Generation because I fell in love with a man that loved it. For me it was a snooze fest with a capital S. So, the fact that this book was so thoroughly enjoyable threw me for a loop.
The story is fast paced and exciting. 
Overall: A+ 
I was amazed at how thorough the author was in creating an entire alternate universe. Her attention to detail really sucked me in. That and the relationship between Sara Mendoza, Ranier, and Sean. The torture scenes were brutal, the love scenes were hot, and the entire message of society/values left me awestruck. 
I highly recommend you give this title a shot. It will blow you away. And when you're done, you'll be able to pass it along to the sci-fi fan in your life. Just think, you'll be able to talk Fragger speak with the best of them at the Nebula awards...
Right now you can pick up a copy of Ambasadora for $2.99 as an eBook or $13.99 in paperback at Well worth the money in either format. You can find out more about Heidi Ruby Miller by clicking on her name.

2. Hello, Elsie? This is the PTO calling...
So, Confessions of a PTA Mafia Mom, is out. I'm filled with happiness every time somebody Googles my name, my book, my blog...all of it/any of it. Last week I got an email fom the Editor-in-Chief of PTO Today magazine asking if I would give them an opportunity to read the book, in exchange for some free press in their mag that goes to 80,000 schools/administrators/parents.
Hmmm let's see. I write a book poking fun at small ton PTA members & a national organization that works hand in hand with the people I mocked would like to read the this a set up?
Who cares? I sent it off. Cross your fingers for me. If an eighth of the people that see the article buy the book, that will be a huge win for old Elsie over here.

3. Things that are new
I updated my business cards. I wanted something that encompassed everything Elsie/Elizabeth/E.B. No better time than the present to tie in all the multiple personalities. Here they are:

 What do you think? Pretty snazzy, eh?
I'm considering a website to match. 
Three sites is a lot though. Not sure on that one yet.


That's all I have for now, folks. Stay tuned for a review/interview with Laurel Osterkamp & details of my meanderings in San Diego. 

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