Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Edgar Sawtelle, Hunger Games, Duma Key

Okay, really loving some of the ideas you guys pumped out yesterday regarding a contest/ Book 2 promotion/ THE MAZE RUNNER advance copies. Look for next Monday to have official rules posted. Still thinking...

Meanwhile, thoughts on some books I've read recently:

So, my Grandpa's name was Edgar Thomas Player. And, like most Grandpas, he was wicked awesome (that's for my Boston fans). This is why I used the name Edgar for Tick's dad in THE 13TH REALITY.

Well, recently I committed to expand my reading choices to books I might not be inclined to run over old ladies to buy. Pretty sure I'd never read an Oprah book in my life, so I borrowed THE STORY OF EDGAR SAWTELLE from my mother-in-law. Big thick book, attractive cover, selling like hot cakes. Not knowing a thing about it, I dug in.

Now, you won't believe this, but the main character's name is Edgar. I kinda knew that going in.

But then I finished it (I'll give my opinion in a sec) and moved on to my next book, also not knowing anything about it. (Remember, I do this with both movies and books as much as humanly possible.) It was DUMA KEY, by my favorite author, Stephen King. I'd been holding out on that one as a reward, and finally couldn't wait any longer.

Guess what the main character's name is? Edgar.

What are the odds of this? Two books in a row with the main dude named Edgar. Plus, it makes my choice of the name not so original anymore. Anyway, just for the record, MY book came out before both of these, so there. At least, I think it did.

Okay, so maybe that's not so weird. In fact, pretty sure it's not. Moving right along....

Did you know EDGAR SAWTELLE is a modern telling of Hamlet? I'm so glad I found this out because it made the book much more fascinating. The author does it in very clever ways, but it's also obvious. And if you like dogs, this is a must read for you. It's long, and very literary, and pretty much depressing (hello, based on Hamlet), but really good. A masterpiece in character development.

I read the last 200 pages in one day, and them's a lotta words on each page! I can promise you this: when it's over, you will feel like Edgar is a real person and you will love him like a brother or son. Excellent job, Mr. David Wroblewski. Excellent lessons for any writer - I learned a lot.

Haven't finished DUMA KEY yet, but so far so good.

I also read HUNGER GAMES by Suzanne Collins recently. Definitely one of those books you could possibly read in one sitting if you had a few hours to kill. I think the reason I liked it so much is because it's exactly the kind of book I try to write for people, and its audience will be the same audience for MAZE. So I hope my timing is good, because that book is hot, hot, hot right now.

To be honest, I was scared to read it. I'd heard so much about it from so many people, I thought I'd start it and get depressed because it was a billion times better than MAZE. But you know what, it didn't do that! Instead, it gave me 100% confidence that anyone who likes that book will also like MAZE. Wow, miracles never cease.

Anyway, as you can see, I don't tell you much when I do reviews. Just the way I like them.

Don't forget to come see me if you live in Utah at the LTUE conference at BYU. CLICK HERE.

And here's a writing update on Book 3 of 13TH REALITY: 49,148 words.


Suey said...

Wow... sounds like I better move Edgar up a few positions in the old TBR pile! And I'm very glad that The Hunger Games encouraged you and didn't discourage.

Both my son and I are enjoying Dark Infinity right now... I'm hoping to have a review of sorts posted soon.

I'm also hoping to get to some of LTUE. That was a blast last year.

LouMac said...

Sweet! I am the first to comment. That is awesome advice James. I will definitely have to look into those books.

For the Stalker...er...Fan contest, did you check your email yet? If you haven't, you need to. You will be amazed. Once again, I have used my expert computer skills (not really expert) and my expert stalker (did I say stalker?) skills to create a masterpiece! Hope you liked it! I will also be doing a lot of blogging this nest two weeks!!!

Good luck with the rest of the promotion!!! By the way, you told me to tell you who I am so I wouldn't have to wait in line for a book. My name is Lonnie McCulloch and I live in Sanpete County. I will try and make it up to the BYU Bookstore when you are there for the signing! I can't wait to finally meet you! Just meeting you and getting your autograph will make my day!!!

Don't worry, my excellent stalker...I mean...fan skills will be of useful service!

I will do some of my blogging later. I need to get back to my schoolwork. Oh! I also updated my profile! You can check it out if you want!!!

LouMac said...

Oh man! I am second! I guess that's what I get for being your biggest stalker...er...fan!!!

Go James!!! See you at BYU!!!

Luisa Perkins said...

I loved Duma Key; I'll have to try the other two.

James Dashner said...

HaHa. Yesterday Magenta, today Loumac. So close, yet so far away. I like this competition to be first commenter.

Wow, Loumac, that's incredible! You've left me speechless. Thank you so much for that.

Suey, see ya at LTUE. Hope you keep liking that book....

Luisa, I know you're a fellow SK fan. He's the man.

Magenta said...

Yeah, I had the very same experience, Lonnie. Just those 2 minutes too late. Better luck next time though...

I loved the Hunger Games, Dude. I wrote a whole blog post about it. Do you know about my book blog?
http://bettinasbooks2009.blogspot.com? You should visit it sometime.

LouMac said...

Wait, so did you get my email? It was pretty sweet huh? I did all the cool sparkly font effects and blinking background thing. If you didn't see that, you need to open it through Microsoft Word. It is totally awesome!

Oh, and I can't wait for Book 3. You are cruising right along, aren't you? My book is only....(Let me check...just a second...)...Aha! It is 5,460 words. I haven't worked on it for awhile, but I am getting pretty far. You can read it on my blog. Or just email me if you want to read the prologue. If I might say so myself, it has improved greatly with all the input from my blogger friends out there!

Catch Ya Later James!

Remember, you are never alone. Your stalkers...er...friends/fans...have your back!

If you need anything, you can ask us stalkers...I mean...friends to help you with it.

J.N. Future Author said...

LuoMac, we should start a Stalk-James fanclub! ^.^

Sweet! BYU! I'll be there! (if I can...)

Still spreading the word!

LouMac said...

Jacoby-I think the club would fill up too fast. But we so totally should. You can start up a blog and we'll both be the authors! (lol) Hopefully I will see you at BYU! I'll be the one talking to James the whole time getting people mad for not getting an autographed copy! *Laughs Loudly*

Let me know when you get the blog started up! :)

Oh shoot! James can read this.

James- You didn't see anything!!!

L.T. Elliot said...

Thanks for the extra books to add to my list. I'm always on the hunt for good stuff to read. (And you can be trusted...or can you? Yeah, you totally can.)

What a beautiful tribute to "Grandpa Dude." He must have been a wonderful man that you honor him so.

See you at LTUE, storymakers, & BYU. It wasn't a planned stalking. It just turned out that way. =]

Q said...

Loved loved loved The Hunger Games. Now I need The Maze Runner ever more. Print lots of ARCs.

Unknown said...

Told you Hunger Games was good! And I'm sure Maze Runner will be totally awe-some! Maybe I'll have to try some Edgar books. Of course, when I hear the name Edgar I can't help but think of Men In Black and the "Egger Suit." (Please tell me you get that.)

J.N. Future Author said...

hehe, I already get jealous when someone else talks! ^.~,

besides! this would be an awesome way to spread the news!!! ^.^ lets do it!

James, be worried, VERY worried ^.^

XxkATiELuVsYoUxX said...

the Hunger Games will always be my favorite book...but i think the Maze Runner just made #2 :D

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