Criss Cross: Do Books Really Need Plots?

Criss Cross, a Newberry Medal winner from Lynn Rae Perkins, begins with the sentence, "She wished something would happen." This sentence is followed up with a meandering story, told from the perspective of six different adolescents across the span of one summer. Nothing dramatic happens to any of them. None of them end up dating each other. … Continue reading Criss Cross: Do Books Really Need Plots?

Why Does the South Get Its Own Genre?

I didn't just grow up in the south. I grew up on southern fiction,moving up from children's books like Because of Winn Dixie and Bud, Not Buddy to the more intense Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry! and To Kill a Mockingbird and finally to the truly haunting The Color Purple and Absalom, Absalom! The fact that one branch of regional literature could … Continue reading Why Does the South Get Its Own Genre?

6 Sickening Moments in Classic Literature

If you've ever taken a course in creative writing, you'll know that being on this list is a compliment! A writer's main goal is to manipulate his reader's emotions. The writers on this list manipulated my emotions so effectively that they bypassed all secondary and tertiary emotions and tapped into one of my primary emotions, … Continue reading 6 Sickening Moments in Classic Literature

Harry Potter and the Power of the Heptalogy

JK Rowling's Harry Potter books claim 7 of the slots in the top 10 bestselling books of all times. That's a stupefying statistic if I've ever heard one! Rowling's writing is enchanting by its own right. If she had stopped at Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, the book still would have fared well with children. If she had wrapped Harry's … Continue reading Harry Potter and the Power of the Heptalogy