Master Thieves in Fiction

  • Above-average intelligence
  • Cunning
  • Manipulative
  • Moral Flexibility

All qualities that can be found in great “Master Thieves” in fiction. All of whom have a tendency to target people with more power and wealth than they do.

With such attributes that can be attributed to successful CEO’s, one might ask why they bother stealing? It certainly isn’t about survival. Though some “Master Thieves” might start out their careers stealing for food and other necessities.

Continue reading “Master Thieves in Fiction”

Books that Make Kindle Unlimited Worth It

Subscribers to Kindle Unlimited will know that it has a LOT of titles. But unfortunately, it takes time to separate the chaff from the wheat.

How does one usually do it?

You can look at their Best-Sellers list. Or look at the number of great customer reviews and ratings.

However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you would enjoy the title yourself. I’ve seen a lot of titles that have great ratings and reviews. But unfortunately were not my cup of tea.

So here are titles that (I think) make subscribing to Kindle Unlimited worthwhile. You may or may not agree with me. But I think these titles are worth a try!

Continue reading “Books that Make Kindle Unlimited Worth It”

Ruling and Intrigue (Politics in YA)

Everyone wants power.

Unfortunately, power is treated and viewed as a limited resource. To have it means that a lot of other people do not have it. To have power, after all, means that a certain number of people (willingly or not, knowingly or not) have to submit to your will.

To have none makes you vulnerable to those unscrupulous enough to use you on their way to more power or just those sadistic enough to want you to suffer. But ironically enough, having power just makes you an even bigger target to those who would want to claim your power for their own. Not to mention the age-old and well-used saying that “power corrupts.” In other words, there’s a big chance you end up wanting more power to protect whatever power you already have to the point that you will cross lines and trample lines to get more.

Continue reading “Ruling and Intrigue (Politics in YA)”

When He’s A She

What would possess a girl to dress up and pose as a boy? As the following books will tell you, there’s plenty!

Some choose to do so to hide from people who wish them dead. Posing as a boy would be able to confuse the enemy who wants to track her down. And in cases where she is left alone in an environment that preys on the weak, being a boy would lessen (at least in some small part) the perceived vulnerability.

For others, it’s not as much hiding as it is a way to gain an opportunity closed to her if she “remains” a girl. This is very popular especially in fiction that shows culture wherein the females are simply relegated to the home and care of children. Some girls dress up as boys in order to avail themselves of education and/or the chance for adventure in the outside world.

What I see in common in books that make use of this trope is how being female is seen as a weakness. At least at the start of the book. In order for the main female character to be treated seriously, she has to deceive others into thinking she’s a boy despite the fact that her achievements have little to do with gender but more to do with her hard work and will to succeed.

But what I like is that these books is that the main characters do not totally eschew their gender. They don’t hate themselves for being born a girl. They do not think being a girl is inferior to being a man. Yes, they are female. But they have accomplished great things equal to those accomplished by a man.

Eventually, their masquerade does get found out. And I like that these ladies can take away from this the knowledge that they are capable and strong. And that their gender is not a hindrance to doing great things.

Continue reading “When He’s A She”

The Wonder and Horror of a Mother’s Love

Love them or hate them, mothers are an integral part of so many people’s lives. So much so that a day is set aside to honor them and that the theme of motherhood has been tackled in literature since time immemorial.

And from what I can see, this theme will continue to be tackled in future books to come

But because a lot of people have been called “Mother,” the meaning has been diluted IMO. Some are totally awesome mothers who would be their children’s first and number 1 fans and protect them from harm (biological child or not). While some are sadly only called mother because they managed to keep the baby alive in their wombs for nine months and managed to get it out.

Both types of mother’s (and everything else in between) have been portrayed in books, movies and TV shows.

But for now, I’ll focus on the books with:

1.) Moms as the main character

2.) Children in danger

AND

3.) Moms actively doing something to keep them safe from harm

In the following books, the main focus (and conflict) rests on the mother and her child. So any romance happening will be put in the back burner. The relationship between mother and child can vary. Some may be estranged and some may be close. Or it could be a complicated mix of both

But whatever it may be, the following books exclusively feature the MAMA BEAR trope.

We often think of mothers as this nurturing, gentle figure. But as a lot of us would also know, the mother can also be this strict disciplinarian who won’t hesitate to punish when it is warranted.

The mothers in the following selection undoubtedly love their children. And it is their main goal to keep their children safe no matter what. But a mother’s love is a multi-faceted thing. As you will soon see, it leads the moms to do pretty amazing and awe-inspiring things. But at the same time, it can lead them to a path of carnage that inspire terror into people’s hearts.

So whenever you see another person and think about hurting him. Just remember that he has a mother. And she may be the most horrifying thing you’ve ever encountered…

Continue reading “The Wonder and Horror of a Mother’s Love”

Published Original Works or AU Fanfic Gone Mainstream?

Did you know that Fifty Shades of Gray and Sempre started out as Twilight Fanfic?

This only came to my knowledge recently. But given how much fanfic I’ve read and how great storytellers fanfic writers can be, I’m not surprised that an alternate universe fanfic can be reworked to an original fiction, published on paper and make it to mainstream (and thus a wider range of readers as opposed to only those who have access to internet).

Continue reading “Published Original Works or AU Fanfic Gone Mainstream?”

Breaking Moulds and Kicking Ass

If Sailor Moon has taught me anything, it has taught me that you can defend the weak and save the world even while wearing a tiara and mini skirt. Prior to this, I always thought saving the world requires a knowledge of martial arts (all the better to clobber the denizens of darkness), armor and a sword. LOL

But in any case, what I’m trying to say is that you don’t always have to fit the mould to achieve your goals in life. You don’t always have to cross-dress as a man to show that you can be just as tough and strong as a man. And you don’t always have to be ruthless and cruel to take down an enemy.

Sure, you have an idea of how to get to your goals. But it isn’t set in stone. And one spoiled opportunity should never mean the end of your dreams.

Continue reading “Breaking Moulds and Kicking Ass”

“I’m Who?!!”

Amnesia storylines. Some love it. Some hate it.

But it doesn’t change the fact that it will continue to be used.

It’s very popular in the romance genre, especially to heighten angst. What better way for a character to miss a person (without killing or sending him away) than to make him forget about you? What better way to angst about your regrets for taking the loved one for granted than when he does not even remember ever loving you?

But the amnesia storyline is not solely the weapon of romantic angst. Some authors use it as a way to reinvent a character (ie making a previously establish character do things they would never do had they had their memories). While others use amnesia to heighten suspense (especially in thrillers wherein the knowledge the character lost may be critical to his survival).

And then there are some who use it to horrify, especially when a character forgets his memories as an subconscious way to protect himself from mental trauma.

Continue reading ““I’m Who?!!””

Blame It on Austen

Why is Regency Romance so popular? Notice how the romance section of your local bookstore contains a vast amount of books set in Regency England.

Why is that? And why is it that present-time writers still produce stories for this era?

Whether deserved or undeserved, I’m crediting Ms Jane Austen for the Regency Romance popularity. Personally, Pride and Prejudice was the first romantic book I encountered for this era. And I really loved it. Because what’s not to love?

  • The very eloquent hand-written letters.
  • The beautiful Regency-era clothes
  • The dances (especially the ones that make it look like a whole group is dancing in tandem) *note: please forgive me for being a huge ignoramous about this
  • I especially love the speech pattern of this era. The characters’ word choices and grammar sound so good that it sometimes goes over my head that they are actually insulting each other. LOL

Continue reading “Blame It on Austen”