What happened at Novel Reaction? Why have there been no postings for weeks? I know that I posted I would be doing regular reviews and Books-to-Movie Challenges again, and I really meant to. But in addition to everything I shared on my posting titled “We interrupt our regularly scheduled postings“, I am pregnant. Which is fabulous! My hubby and I are both very excited to be welcoming a new book worm to the family in October (and yes, I have already started buying books for him). B-U-T in addition to being pregnant I have been suffering from nausea, which means the last thing I want to do is turn my computer on. I have joked with my hubby that lately I have become a bump on the couch, not moving much but the cat has sure been enjoying my inactivity.
So what does a bookworm do when she doesn’t feel good? She reads of course. But, I have found that when I am not feeling great I want to reread favorites. So while I have been flying through at least a book a day for the last month, they have all been rereads of old friends. Georgette Heyer, Betty Neels, Johanna Lindsey, Julia Quinn, Terry Pratchett, to name just a few. What about yourself? What do you read when not feeling fabulous?
Well, I survived the Bar and took a week to recover but I am excited to be back discussing all things bookish. As I mentioned previously, Novel Reaction will be cutting back on the number of reviews posted each week (we were posting three) to at least one a week, possibly more, we have to see how it goes. But one of the great things about blogging is the ability to change and grow as life changes. There are some exciting Books-to-Movies coming soon so the Books-to-Movie Challenge will be starting again in April. Novel Reaction will be posting reviews on the newest releases by Julia Quinn, Amanda Quick and many other great authors in the next couple of weeks. If you have sent me an email in the last month I apologize that I haven’t gotten back to you yet and will be tackling my scary inbox in the next two weeks or so. I thank you all for your patience during these last couple of months and I am excited to talk about books again.
As you may have noticed, Novel Reaction has not been posting as regularly as we usually do. All I can say is that sometimes life happens. Novel Reaction is a labor of love, goodness knows I don’t make any money off this site but I love books, I love talking about books, sharing about books and I especially love getting books in the mail. But despite that love, sometimes real life gets in the way of the things that we love. I (Jessica) am currently preparing to take the Arizona Bar (for the second time) next week, I had all these good intentions of having scheduled postings already done so you the reader wouldn’t notice but obviously that has not happened.
Not only have I been neck deep in legal textbooks, one of the main contributors (Jocee) has recently joined the workforce after being a stay-at-home mom for seven years. This means all those wonderful mystery reviews she used to provide have been put on the back burner while she adjusts to working and being mom to her three children (who are also big readers).
Another great contributor (Jillian) is a full-time college student, working two part-time jobs to pay for it and is now planning for her wedding this summer. Needless to say, she is a little busy right now and not reading as much as she used to. We are very excited for her.
What does all this mean for Novel Reaction? Well, after next week (when I will be trapped in a room with hundreds of other stressed out individuals) Novel Reaction will be back to regular postings but probably not as many (so one review a week instead of three). I am looking forward to bringing back the Books-to-Movie Challenge, so many great books to movies coming out this year including Beautiful Creatures, The Host, and Mortal Instruments. So please be patient with us as we adjust to our new life changes.
I was reading Hunk for the Holiday by Katie Lane, in it the main character has hired an escort to be her date to a family party but, through some miscommunication, ends up with someone else who she doesn’t realize isn’t an escort until after they have fallen in love. Part of the way this mistake happened is because she left her cell phone in the office over a holiday weekend, so she didn’t have way for people to get in touch with her. This got me thinking about miscommunication in the age of technology. A large part of the conflict and trials that characters go through in novels is because of miscommunication, either someone says something that is interpreted by the other character incorrectly or one of the characters has to be out of range of communication. Twenty years ago this wasn’t as big of a problem, the character would leave the office or their home and immediately be out of communication range. But we live in a day of smart phones, internet cafes and free wifi everywhere, you can ask just about any stranger on the street to borrow their cellphone. So how does an author of a contemporary genre believably effect this miscommunciation?
I think some of it has to do with the location of the setting of the story, if the story takes place in rural Nebraska and a serial killer is after the main character but cell reception is spotty at best, believable. But if the killer is chasing after someone on the streets of NY, not so believable, why wouldn’t the character just call the police?! Granted, you can always pull the “forgot to charge my cellphone” gimmick but you can only believable get away with that once, maybe twice in the story before it becomes so ridiculous that it is irritating. What really got me thinking about this topic was the main character in Hunk for the Holiday is a control freak, all the characters talk about her in charge attitude, she admits to being in control and yet she willingly left her cellphone at the office for two whole days. I am connected to my cellphone, if I leave to run to the grocery store without it I feel like I have left a limb at home, so I struggled about with this one fact in the story. Would someone who is a control freak willingly leave their cellphone some place else without doing something to go get it?
But then again, in some ways it becomes easier for miscommunication to occur in the age of cell phones. For example, if a cell phone is lost or broken and the main character goes home where killer is waiting, with no home phone (because many people only have cell phones, no home phones at all) then the main character is much more vulnerable without any convoluted explanations as to why the phone line isn’t working.
So what do you think? Is this something that can make or break a believeable story or is it such a minor detail that it doesn’t really matter?