March 29th, 2006

Fashunating!

Diana Peterfreund currently is conducting The Great Blog Voice Experiment. She gave 12 writers one sentence—A young woman confronts her parents after discovering she has inherited telekinetic powers—and asked each of us to come up with a short scene, without any of us looking at the others’ work or even knowing who the other authors were. The point is to disprove the claim that one author can steal an idea from another, because any two authors given the same idea will come up with completely different stories. But you can judge for yourselves, and join the discussion. Diana and Marley Gibson already have scenes up. Mine should be posted today, I think. Check back Thursday for two more, and Friday for the last two, including Nalini Singh.

Speaking of Diana, I finished my advance copy of Secret Society Girl last weekend. I don’t know about you, but I get a bit jaded with reading popular fiction sometimes. Everything is packaged so beautifully, with sexy covers and delicious back cover copy to draw you in. Then you read and are disappointed. Either the book is downright bad, or you were expecting the promised gourmet meal and got Fritos.

Diana’s book has received lots of attention, too, but I’m happy to report that this one does not disappoint. The first two pages should be published by themselves under the title, How to Write a Hook. Now, don’t go into the bookstore come July 18 and stand there and read the first two pages without buying the book. Diana has to eat. Something more nutritious than Fritos. But I’m not worried—the hook is good enough that your purchase of the book is a given.

Beyond this, the descriptions I’ve seen of the book are actually accurate! Amy, a junior at a Yale-like university, is inducted into the most powerful secret society on campus—a society heretofore open only to men. The mystique of the society is that they are credited with unbelievable powers in organizations and governments worldwide, and part of being an inductee is learning how many of the rumors are founded. As the secrets of the society fall away, Amy learns more about why women were inducted for the first time, and why she herself was chosen.

Descriptions of the book also mention Diana’s wicked sense of humor, and I enjoyed that too. What I wasn’t expecting is the verisimilitude of Amy’s vulnerability in all this—the induction is a scary and confusing process, after all, and she does have homework! Also, there is a boyfriend. A geeky, mixed-race boyfriend with a penchant for making paper airplanes. ♥ Yeah, I really enjoyed this book.

I would be a little worried that Diana wouldn’t be able to top this book with the sequel. But the blurb sounds awesome: "And watch for Book 2 in the series, out in 2007, in which Amy tackles senior year: GREs and job applications seem like a comparative (literature) piece of cake after one of Amy's fellow Diggers disappears after daring to reveal a society secret..."
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