Ajay, a young thief from India, is on his way to a better life when he is forced to flee Algiers and subsequently gets lost in the Sahara Desert. He is saved by a strange young woman who believes she can talk to the winds, a gift that will save mankind from an imminent apocalypse only she can stop. Ajay has no choice but to follow her out of the barren wasteland, intending to abandon her once they reach Morocco. Yet when he gets the chance to escape her, he realizes he no longer can. He follows, and continues to follow, even when serious dangers loom. A tale of obsession and redemption, The Wind Thief is the story of two souls who are swept from land to land, one in search of a home, the other in search of a war and both ever a step behind the peace they seek.
As Growing Great Characters From the Ground Up states, character development is the most important facet of any character-based book, because “readers won’t follow for long if they find the people you’re writing about dull, one-dimensional or unbelievable.” After listing the three attributes of a great character, the book takes readers through a step-by-step process that teaches them how to develop characters from start to finish.
(Forthcoming Oct. 6, 2020, by Vine Leaves Press)
WINTER LIGHT is the story of 15-year-old Mary Donahue of suburban Chicago, a kid on the cusp of failure during the brutal blizzard winter of 1978-79, the end of a hard luck, hard rock era sunk in the cynical aftermath of the Vietnam War.
The language of WINTER LIGHT is simple and stark as Mary’s internal landscape. Though a smart, beautiful kid, she’s a motherless girl raised by an uneducated, alcoholic father within an extended family of alcoholics and addicts. Aware that she’s sinking, she’s desperate to save herself and so reaches out to an unlikely source, Kathleen, a nice, normal kid from English class.
Though initially bleak, this story of redemption combines literary with historical fiction and is aimed at anyone who loves classics such as To Kill a Mockingbird and Catcher in the Rye where youths struggle at the abyss of a brutal adult world.
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