Review of Isosceles by Scott R. Caseley

museityoung

This World of Ink Tour is dedicated to the young adult novel, ISOSCELES, by Scott R. Caseley, published by MuseItUp Publishing. Congratulations, Scott, for an interesting look into the problems and psychology of children and teens.

On the very first day of Sean McIntyre and Trey Goodsby’s acquaintance in first grade,  we see the warning signs that this relationship is bound for trouble. As Trey builds a structure of blocks, Sean (jealous of the attention directed at Trey) throws a triangular block at him, but the block hits another first-grader, Madeline Edwards. Soon the reader realizes charming Trey has a talent for mischief-making leadership. Sean remains the quiet follower, and Madeline becomes the third member of this unusual grouping.

Then it happens that Sean’s mother and Trey’s father knew each other years ago and now decided to finish what they had started. So the two families break up. The two boys are unhappy, and defiant Trey leads Sean into to stealing. Trey predicts Sean and Madeline will marry, but it seems unlikely since they are simply friends.

As the three friends progress through school, Madeline tries to smooth things over between the boys and  their truant parents, to no avail. Trey continues to steal things, but when Sean’s mother warns him about Trey, Sean is resentful. His father says:

“She worries, Sean. That’s all. She’s just doing her motherly duty letting you

know she cares how you choose to live your life,” he said with tenderness.

“Was it part of her ‘motherly duty’ to leave us?” As I asked the question, the

color left his face, his eyes lost all expression, and he walked out of the room

without saying another word. As I had when Trey rode off on stolen bicycle, I just

watched Pop leave while I remained motionless not knowing what to do or say. I

felt a surge of guilt in an instant. One day, I prayed I’d be able to say the right

things to help someone. Never again, I vowed would I make anyone feel pain by

my words or my silence.

The game of MASH predicts that Madeline will marry Sean, but she says she never thought of him in those terms; and this years after Trey had predicted the very same thing.

Sean’s mother dies of an aneurism and the reception following the funeral is at Sean’s home. Madeline’s mother had committed suicide when she was a little girl.

The triangle drifts apart through the high school years. Then after  years of separation, the three go to a dance together. The evening turns out to be a date for Trey and Madeline while Sean becomes a wall flower.

Over the course of the story, Madeline falls in love with Trey, Sean falls in love with Madeline, and Trey loves all the girls. A lop-sided threesome. Madeline tries unsuccessfully to improve Trey, but he continues to lie and even drops out of school. Trey makes love to Madeline, but feels so guilty he tries to kill himself. His self-loathing finally makes him succeed and Sean gives a touching eulogy at Trey’s funeral.

Though Trey dies, there is a somewhat happy ending with an enduring hopeful prospect.

The finer psychological points are revealed slowly throughout the story, so I’ll leave it to you, dear reader, to decide which leg of the isosceles triangle was the short one.

ISOSCELES is available at MuseItUp Publishing and other fine book stores: http://museituppublishing.com/bookstore2/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=562&category_id=53&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=1

I enjoyed reading the review copy supplied by Virginia Grenier of World of Ink Tours.

World of Ink Tour: Night Buddies:Impostors and One Far-Out Flying Machine

Watch out, Folks! Night Buddies are on the way!

night buddies

“Who are the Night Buddies,” you ask.

I will tell you.

They are the product of Sands Hetherington’s quirky imagination—brought to life by illustrator Jessica Love. I think Sands is an eight-year-old boy in disguise. Snerk! Snog!

In Sands’ book, NIGHT BUDDIES, IMPOSTORS AND ONE FAR-OUT FLYING MACHINE, the protagonists come out at night (that is, the boy, John, sneaks out of the house) to foil the machinations of dastardly criminals. John’s Buddy is a red crocodile named Crosley who wears a yellow coat filled with pineapple cheesecakes. Crosley is mad about pineapple cheesecakes.

All of the night population of the Borough know the job of Night Buddies Almagated is to stop evil doings. Now suddenly, everyone thinks Crosley is doing bad things, such as spray painting “SUBWAY PEOPLE SUCK SLUGS” on the subway station wall. Why? Because an IMPOSTOR is pretending to be Crosley. Yerk, Yerk!

It won’t be easy for The Night Buddies to put a stop to the Iguana Gang (the impostors). But with the help of Officer Finnegan and his horse, Elmer, Fast Fanny the proprietor of The All Night Racing Blimp Emporium (her flying machines can fold up to fit in a closet), Cros’s brother, Crenwinkle, Rodney Oglesby, owner of the sauerkraut and jellybean hot dog cart, big huge Lonnie who supplies the pineapple cheesecakes—and more night people—John and Cros make the Iguana Gang PAY for all that troublemaking. Excelsior!

And what does Miss Stockbridge and the three lady moles, who provide mole milk for the iguanas, have to do with it all?

I can only say—move over, Captain Underpants. Make way for Night Buddies Almagated!

For more information about this fun, silly book and other books in the Night Buddies series, go to www.DuneBuggyPress.com ; also available at Amazon.com and other fine book Emporiums.

My review copy was provided by Virginia Grenier, coordinator of World of Ink Tours.

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My apologies to everyone who was notified that this posts would come out on January 17; I set the date before I left town, but obviously, I did something wrong.

So sorry.

Thanks for Visiting Stories a la Mode

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Spotlight on Maggie Lyons, author

The World of Ink Tours is spotlighting Maggie Lyons, author of the middle grade novel, VIN AND THE DORKY DUET.

Maggie Lyons was born in Wales and brought up in England before gravitating west to Virginia’s coast. She zigzagged her way through a motley variety of careers from orchestral management to law-firm media relations to academic editing. Writing and editing nonfiction for adults brought plenty of satisfaction but nothing like the magic she discovered in writing fiction and nonfiction for children. Several of her articles, poetry, and a chapter book have been published in the children’s magazines Stories for Children Magazine andknowonder!

MAGGIE, WHAT ARE SOME JOBS YOU’VE HAD IN YOUR LIFE? HAVE THEY INFLUENCED AND INSPIRED YOUR WRITING?

For many years I gave private piano lessons to children of all ages, which probably influenced my writing for children in an indirect way. Writing program notes for concerts of the National Symphony Orchestra, Washington, DC and other orchestras in the USA and UK provided the basis for a career of writing in other business fields—yes, the performing arts is a business.  All that nonfiction writing helped my efforts to become a better writer of both nonfiction and fiction, though I’m far from fluent in the art. That’s still an aspiration.  My middle-grade adventure story Vin and the Dorky Duet is directly inspired by my love of music, which found an outlet in my work in performing arts.

MAGGIE, HAVE YOU HAD ANY TRAINING TO BECOME AWRITER?

In terms of formal training, one summer, centuries ago, I attended a short creative writing course at Georgetown University. Informally, all those years of writing business-related nonfiction certainly helped, as have countless pieces of advice from members of my critique group and articles on writing, and reading the works of master writers.

I SEE NOW WHERE VIN GETS HIS PROPENSITY FOR EXAGERATION!

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OPERATION BS COMING UP !!

Magnetic compost heaps, man-eating bubble baths and other disasters erupt when an inventive seventh-grader meets a challenge to win a David Beckham autographed soccer jersey if he can befriend an unsociable nerd and introduce his sister to the nerd’s hunky brother, whose initials just happen to be BS.

The story is about the disasters that pile up when a seventh-grader’s brilliant plan to meet his sister’s challenge takes more than one wrong turn. Life tosses challenges at all of us. It would be incredibly boring if it didn’t. What matters is what we learn from them.

VIN AND THE DORKY DUET  SHOWS MAGGIE’S ABLILITY TO COMPOSE A PLOT AND PEOPLE IT WITH CHARACERS THAT SOUND AS IF THEY COME RIGHT OUT OF A TUPICAL AMERICAN SCHOOL–BUT WITH A SHAKESPEREAN KNACK FOR MIS-ADVENTURE. 

VIN IS A NON-STOP GAB MACHINE OF QUICK-WITTED HUMOR AND EXAGGERATION.

(this is an example of the dry humor:

Although we were in the same seventh-grade homeroom and the same classrooms for a couple of periods, we didn’t sit close to each other and telepathy wasn’t an option.

(and a bit of exaggeration, when the liquid-filled key chain gets broken:

 “Eeuw! What’s that?” Eyeballs squinted at the page through the glass bricks on his nose.

(this episode shows more of Vin’s exaggeration and  Eyeball’s nerdiness:

The ball had cracked, spilling the whales’ ocean. Eyeballs picked up the key chain with a paper napkin, dropped it on the floor, and dabbed at the page with another clean napkin. Who else but Eyeballs would have had paper napkins in his pocket?

“You’ve stained my library book.”

It surprised me that a nerdy person like Eyeballs could say anything so obvious. He looked at me as if I’d totally destroyed a sacred object, blown up a statue of Einstein or something.

“You could try using bleach. My mom swears by it.” I knew as soon as I’d spoken I shouldn’t have said that.

“First, perhaps you haven’t noticed, but I don’t have any bleach.” Eyeballs’s voice hit me

colder than the gym shower. “Second, you can’t use it on paper. When I get home, I can try to get it out with French chalk and an iron.”

(this bit about Vin’s in-class note shows “boy appeal”:

“Not really, Ms. Foote, but I didn’t write it.” Snitch turned to look directly at me, wrinkled

his nose, and shot out his tongue. He looked like a constipated iguana.

Ms. Foote took the note from Snitch and glared at me.

LET ME ASSURE YOU, DEAR READER, THAT THE DUET WAS PLAYED HARMONIOUSLY.

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MAGGIE, THANKS FOR STEPPING INTO THE SPOTLIGHT ON STORIES A LA MODE.

Follow Maggie Lyons at

Website http://www.maggielyons.yolasite.com

Twitter @maggielyons66

You can find out more about Maggie Lyons’s World of Ink Author/Book Tour at http://tinyurl.com/9t24kgy

To learn more about the World of Ink Tours visit http://worldofinknetwork.com

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Full Media Kit, Photos and more are available upon request electronically.

Available at the Muse Bookstore:

http://museituppublishing.com/bookstore2/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=343&category_id=143&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=1

Interview with author Alyce Joy Rininger

Welcome All:

If you leave a comment, I will put your name in the hat for the drawing of a free hard copy of Alyce Joy Rininger’s book, KA-BOOM!

HI ALYCE JOY,

THANKS FOR BEING WITH US TODAY, CONTINUING YOUR CYBER JOURNEY WITH THE WORLD OF INK. EVERYONE WHO HAS READ ABOUT THE ADVENTURES OF YOUR FAIRY, SPROUT, AND TAYLOR, THE LITTLE GIRS SHE BEFRIENDS, HAVE THOUGHT IT SOUNDS LIKE LOTS OF FUN.

NOW, SHARE WITH US HOW YOU BECAME A WRITER AND ANY WRITING QUIRKS YOU HAVE.

I made up verses for my little ones, while getting them ready for bed. At the time, they were two and three years old. They were so adorable trying to memorize them and pronouncing the words was just too cute. We thought we were having fun, but actually, it was the beginning of something not to be known, until many years later.

Eventually, I wrote the verses down on paper. In 1975, my husband, Arland, had them made into a booklet. He also had them printed on sheets of pastel colored paper. Soon I was making plaques out of scrap wood I had burned. The verses on colored paper were soaked in warm tea water and burned around the edges, then glued to the burned plaques and varnished. I sold them in my husband’s booths at the Sportsman Shows. The women liked coming into our booths.

 When my children turned into my grandchildren, I began writing them stories. That is when I seemed to be guided into writing books by my family and friends. After burning life-sized pictures of wildlife onto all the doors of my home, I decided to put away my burning tools and get serious about writing. I took a course by mail, at the Institute of Children’s Literature, to learn how to properly put my thoughts on paper.

Yes, I have writing quirks. Number one, when I’m making notes to myself, I switch from writing to printing, back to writing, then printing etc, etc. I don’t know why I do that. Another quirk is, sometimes when I’m writing, my mind starts working too fast and it gets boggled. I will stop and work on a Sudoku puzzle for a while. It works.

I’m into quirky words and names for my stories. The kids seem to perk up when they are learning something silly, weird or different. A lot of my quirkiness comes straight from the dictionary. One last quirk for now…my pens are always disappearing from every phone on the main floor of this house. I accused my husband of taking them, until I kept finding them in my office. No, I never accuse him anymore, since I pretty much know where I’ll find them.

HERE IS A QUICK REVIEW OF ALYCE JOY’S BOOK, WHICH I RECENTLY REVIEWED ON THIS BLOG. 

KA-BOOM! is about a little fairy named Sprout who runs into trouble quite often. This little fairy is in the service of her queen, the beloved Splaminda Herminda, who rules Spritesville. The queen sends Sprout to different places to do whatever job needs done. Sprout meets a little girl named Taylor after blowing up Taylor’s dollhouse. Sprout doesn’t give up trying to get Taylor to trust her. She and Taylor finally become friends after Sprout shrinks Taylor and together they have a fantastic adventure. Taylor never thought she would be talking to Sir Leapsalot, let alone ride on his back and hopping lily pads. The message? Never give up.

ALYCE JOY, IT HAS BEEN FUN LEARNING ABOUT YOU AND YOUR QUIRKY WAYS. YOU JUST REMINDED ME THAT I DID WOOD BURNING WHEN I WAS A KID, BUT I WAS NOT AS MUCH INTO IT AS YOU WERE. THANKS AGAIN FOR BEING ON STORIES A LA MODE.

HI READERS—DON’T FORGET TO LEAVE YOUR NAME AND EMAIL FOR ME TO GET IN TOUCH WITH THE WINNER OF KA-BOOM!

KA-BOOM! is published by Halo Publishing International. Here is the link where you will find Alyce Joy Rininger’s page with the buy link to KA-BOOM!

http://www.halopublishing.com/bookstore/Alyce-Joy-Rininger

Review of Alyce Joy Rininger’s KA-BOOM

Alyce Joy Rininger’s book, KA-BOOM, published by Halo Publishing International, is touring this month with the World of Ink, sponsored by V. S. Grenier. The illustrator, Diane Lucas, shows us a fantasy world any child would itch to get into, with a fairy, cute and funny animals, and a passenger butterfly.

Starting off with a bang, KA-BOOM, opens with the fairy, Sprout, blasting Taylor’s dollhouse to smithereens. Taylor grabs a flyswatter, but she’s determined to be brave. Though Taylor is distrustful of the fairy, they gradually become friends, and Sprout shrinks Taylor down to fairy size so they can go on adventures.

Sprout performs her magic tricks by touching her left wing to her right foot (or is it the right wing to the left foot?) Anyway, she gets the job done in a flurry of noise, light, and smoke.

 

Sprout can’t remember all that she’s supposed to do for Fairy Queen Splaminda Herminda of Spritesville, but she takes on the challenge. It has something to do with helping Taylor develop more compassion, be less suspicious, and believe in unbelievable discoveries.

 

Together the two teensy girls fly out of the house on a blue butterfly because one of Taylor’s wishes is to visit with a chipmunk and hop around on lily pads in the pond. While Taylor and Sprout go about seeking fun activities, danger surrounds them. For one thing, a couple of bad boys, Loozer and Doozer, the Brattz brothers, like to trample little critters. And for another, the Fish Hawk likes to swoop down to the pond and eat anything he can grasp in his talons. Taylor has to watch out for him when she’s riding on the back of Sir Leapsalot, the bullfrog.

But Taylor and Sprout also meet up with some charming characters who are friendly. Snilly Snail is the one who warns them about the Brattz brothers. And Miss Chipsie, the chipmunk, serves them her sassafras tea in pignut shells.

One of the humorous things is that Miss Chipsie’s blueberry bowl is actually Taylor’s missing tea cup from her tea set. But Taylor is becoming very generous, and she urges Miss Chipsie to keep the bowl (tea cup).

Sprout, with help from her friends, keeps Taylor safe through all their adventures and brings her back home where she adjusts her size back to normal. Sprout is sure the fairy Queen will be pleased with the way she handled Taylor.

Sprout wears a golden disk on a chain around her neck that tells something about what she’s doing or feeling. When she first arrives, she’s ZONKED.  The she runs the gamut from  HOPEFUL, DANGER, RELAX,  SPROUT CLOUTS (when she bested the fish hawk), PRIDE, and all the way back to KA-BOOM!

Lots of humor comes out in Sprout’s vocabulary. She loves to spout fancy words, and if there isn’t one, she makes one up. Here is a list of some of the words that the reader will find at the end of the book:

●Bedraggled……………………… limp, soiled and frayed.

• Bippityhooed………………….. one of Sprout’s words….loud, silly laughter.

• Camouflaged………………….. designed to look like natural surroundings.

• Cumbersome……………..….. difficult to manage because of bulk or shape.

• Discombobulated…………….. thrown into a state of confusion.

• Endeavored……………………. made a serious effort…struggled.

Follow Alyce Joy at: Website http://alycejoy.com

KA-BOOM is available at:  Publisher http://www.halopublishing.com/bookstore/Ka-Boom

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I was provided with a review copy of the book for providing an honest review.

Contact Info:

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me.

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