Saturday, September 17, 2011

Mind over Mind by Karina Fabian book tour

It's the first time I'm hosting a book tour on Review Carnival. This is to promote Karina Fabian's hot new release- Mind Over Mind. Here's some important info for those of you who are intrigued by this new release. Title: Mind Over Mind Author: Karina Fabian ISBN: 978-1897942369 Amazon Link: Kindle Link: Back Cover Blurb/summary: Deryl Stephen’s uncontrollable telepathic abilities have landed him in a mental health institution, where no one believes in his powers. But when Joshua Lawson, a student of neuro linguistic programming, takes part in a summer internship, he takes the unique step of accepting Deryl’s reality and teaches him to work with it. As Deryl learns control, he finds his next challenge is to face the aliens who have been contacting him psychically for years—aliens who would use him to further their cause in an interplanetary war. Karina has been very kind to do a post on What characters can't do. This is a great post for those looking to be authors or wanting to write something themselves. Here are tips from a master!
What Can't Your Character Do? By Karina Fabian The comment sighed at me from the sidebar: Is there anything this guy can't do? This guy is too perfect; give him some flaws. All Joshua was doing was making eggs. Really nice, fluffy scrambled eggs, sure, but that's actually the one meal he can do well. But, on top of the good looks, the talent, the intelligence, and the chivalrous attitude, fluffy eggs pushed my editor over the edge--and rightly so. We were a third of the way through Mind Over Mind, and Joshua hadn't done anything badly yet. Where were the flaws? It's easy to fall in love with our character and to want to show him in the best light--or even to set him up as Mr. Fabulous before showing the chinks in the armor. Sometimes, the other characters need to see him that way--but not the readers. Readers don't sympathize with a Mary Sue--they just get annoyed by him, as my editor was during what should have been a romantic breakfast. In order to prevent that, we need to make sure we know what they can't do--and introduce the flaws early on that the character is approachable as well as wonderful. It doesn't have to be drastic, either. In Joshua's case, I brought in some of his arrogance and immaturity. I also got rid of the expansive description of the eggs. (If he'd cooked something else badly elsewhere in the book, I could have kept that, but it never came up again, so better to leave it more "normal.") The next time you read about your character and think about how wonderful he is, stop yourself and ask--is there anything your character can't do? Be sure he's got his tarnish as well as his polish. It makes him all the more loveable.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Ouran High school host club anime review

Ouran High school host club is a 26 episode series about a host club in Ouran High, a school for the ultra-rich and elite. The members of the club are Tamaki Suou (the prince type), Honey senpai (the cute type), Hikaru and Kaoru Hitachiin (the naughty type twins), Kyouya Ootori (the cool type) Takashi Morinozuka (the strong, silent type).

The host club members are all very popular in the school. Haruhi Fujioka is a relatively poor and tomboyish student with excellent grades who joins Ouran in her first year of high school. There she mistakenly stumbles across the host club room and breaks an expensive vase. She is given a choice either to repay the money or work as a host. Since she doesn't have money, she agrees to be a host. The problem? She's a girl. The solution? They disguise her as a boy. This plot sounds like a cross-breed of Hana Yori Dango and Hana Kimi, and drew me to watch the anime instantly.

Hence the series starts. The first two three episodes are extremely good. There is plenty of hilarity. The following episodes start to become monotonous and cliched, with the characters being very stereotypical and having a cardboard-cutout personality.

Haruhi's character is the best because she is so realistic and three-dimensional. Honey was cute, too. The series should probably be awarded the anime with the best eye candy in history. Everything, from the guys to the roses (loved how there was a different color for each one), to the school and costumes was done with excellent aesthetics. It's a treat for the eyes.

Around the sixteenth episode is when things start to pick up and you start realizing that something good is going to be coming your way. Each character gets an episode which makes their personlaity more three-dimensional. The characters also start to bond really well during this time, especially with Haruhi. These episodes were great and finally broke the characters away from their stereotypes.

The last few episodes build the mystery by revealing Tamaki's secret past, difficult roadblocks and a mountain of problems for the host club. The last episode was tear-jerking but the series has a happy ending. I felt totally great watching this series.

Although there are quite a lot of filler episodes in the beginning, I kinda expected it because the manga is still running and the anime makers didn't have a whole lot of material to put into the series.

When I started watching Ouran, I expected a silly, shallow, rather underwhelming series, the way the episodes were moving. But this is surely a series worth watching, even though it is a bit of a late starter.



Pros- Extremely beautiful visuals
The characters actually develop
The last few episodes are very suspenseful and addictive
Great ending

Cons- Too many filler episodes in the beginning

I realize that the manga is still going. The anime has inspired me to read the manga so that I can know how the story develops further.