Personal circumstances have kept me away from the computer for the last few days, but I’m going to be using this Writer Wednesday to share some great news and combine it with Talent Tuesday.
Jenny Siler, aka Alex Carr, is a favorite author of mine. I think I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a big fan of first-person in fiction. However, Jenny Siler has made a believer out of me that when it’s done right, and by a talented author, first-person really shines. I’ve collected all her novels and I’m eager to share with you why Jenny Siler is not just fantastic, but awe-inspiring!
(Don’t miss the end of this post for some awesome news!)
This is one of those books where you forget that you’re reading about a character who doesn’t actually exist. Voyeurism at its best; because it’s so unexpected. At first, I thought I was in for a great read along the lines of Dean Koontz’s “Intensity.” This was more than that though. In Intensity, China relies on the survival skills her past gave her to survive a psycho on the loose who’s only motivation is to fulfill his insane fantasies. In Easy Money, Allie doesn’t rely solely on her past as the daughter of a drug runner, but also on her heart and mind to resolve a crime committed during Viet Nam, one where the cover-up has recently led to the execution of a retired CIA agent.
Jenny didn’t make the mistake of letting up on the gritty reality of living and growing up in the underworld to introduce a Bondesque style plot where government intrigue catapulted the reader into some sleek and sophisticated realm of suit-wearing, gun-toting posh villains with British accents and impeccable taste. She stayed true to the sensory input that made this story real to me.
If I thought I loved Easy Money, Flashback was to make me a fan for life. How could I, the lover of action and strong heroines, not fall completely in love with Eve? Her memories buried, she took refuge with nuns in France. When the nuns are massacred by someone wishing to kill Eve, she’s forced to figure out who she was before she lost her memory or die trying.
For me, the brilliance of this story (beyond the opening hook) was how I felt like I had lived and breathed the alleys, streets and shops of Marrakech when I came away from the story. Even with a fabulous plot I couldn’t guess before hand and Jenny’s wonderfully realistic and unique characters (who are all flawed with profoundly human weaknesses) it was the sense of living and breathing in the full moment, including the setting, that kept me riveted to her writing.
An Accidental American:
Writing as Alex Carr, this was a long awaited new novel for me and I was happy to get my copy within the first week of its release—but even more thrilled when I was introduced to Nicole, a woman well known for her abilities as a forger. Instead of sharing with you all the wonderful things about this book—as they again would praise Jenny’s strengths as a writer (which are numerous) I’d like to share this quote from the Carr website:
"I once heard it said that there is no such thing as an accidental American. That we are, all of us, citizens by conscious choice. Of course it was a Frenchman who posited this, some self-proclaimed modern philosopher on one of the political discussion shows on France 2, so I’ve always taken the theory with a grain of salt. After all, to be an American has never been my choice. I was raised in Lebanon and have lived most of the rest of my life in Europe. I’ve claimed France as my home and chosen the one profession in which these things can be changed. I’m my own universal consulate. I can whip out any decent passport in a matter of hours.
If anything, I am a mongrel, the daughter of a father who was, himself, a drifter and a con-man. My mother was a half-breed with French and Maronite parentage and an Arabic name. A woman whose own country had been stitched together by naive outsiders to form an optimistic whole."
I could go on and on about all her books (most of which I've been fortunate enough to have autographed! But I don't want to make this post overly long! :) )
If you’re looking to write in first person, if you want some great examples of how to craft a first person perspective that has your audience gobbling every word, devouring every page, and starving for more, read Jenny Siler aka Alex Carr.
And if you do want to read her, pick one of her many novels and get it read by Tuesday April 21st because Jenny is celebrating the release of her first non-fiction book, “The Art of the Heist: Confessions of a Master Art Thief, Rock-and Roller and Prodigal Son” because….
SHE WILL BE HERE!!
OMG! Jenny Siler is going to be on my blog next Tuesday to celebrate the launch of her book and answer questions. As she’ll be busy with other commitments early in the day (it is the launch of her book) she’ll be by later on, but she is coming and I’m so stoked that y’all will get a chance to meet with her!
I hope you’ll make her visit at my blog the warmest and best time she’s ever had on a blog ;) I’m even going to be giving away a very special gift during the event so don’t miss out!