Mundie Moms

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Twitter Tuesday - Julie Cross

I don't know if you're like me, but I love the Olympics, and I always wonder what it's like behind the scenes for these elite athletes. How do they cope with everyday stresses and overwhelming tragedies? We've seen those stories where athletes succeed in spite all odds being against them. We fall in love with them and cheer them on all the more because we know their background and pain they went through to just be at the top. And it seems every single one of them has a burden that they carry into competition because no one's life is simple and happy all the time.

Julie Cross was inspired by her own gymnastics and coaching background to write a story in a competitive gymnastics setting. But, this story is not just about athletes; it's about surviving against tragic odds. I read an early copy of this story, and I'm have to post a quick review here which I'll update when I read the finished version.

First, I love Julie's writing style; the plot rhythm of Letters to Nowhere is just as page turning-ly fast as you'd expect from any of her action-packed sequences in the Tempest series. But, LtR is a contemporary story and I expect certain things from a well written contemp. First, the characters have to be believable and most of all real. Karen is one of my favorite contemp protagonists. She is a girl who struggles with not only staying on top of a competitive sport, but also with the tragedy that has forever changed her life.

I love how Julie introduced Coach Bentley and most of all, Jordan. The parallel between Jordan and Karen's coping processes made for the best kind of reading -- the kind where you feel all the feelings the characters are going through and you appreciate their struggles all the more.

I gave this book 5-stars and I wish I could tack on a few more. Go add it to your goodreads TBR and go buy it, at your favorite e-tailer, when it's released sometime this August. If you'd like to read about the inspiration and choice of the self-publishing route for LtR, go read Julie's post on her blog.

Here's the official synopsis, and I think you'll see why I loved this story so much:
A Mature YA contemporary set in the tough world of Elite Gymnastics. Grief, love and pursuing dreams are at the forefront of this emotionally powerful coming-of-age story.

Seventeen year old Karen Campbell has just lost both her parents in a tragic car accident. Grief stricken and alone, her gymnastics coach opens his home to Karen, providing her a place to live while she continues to train, working toward a spot on the world championship team.

Coach Bentley’s only child, seventeen year old Jordan is good-looking and charming enough to scare away a girl like Karen—someone who has spent ten times more hours on balance beams and uneven bars than talking or even thinking about boys. But the two teens share a special connection almost immediately. It turns out Jordan has a tragic past of his own, grief buried for years.

As Karen’s gymnastics career soars, her nightmares and visions of the horrible accident grow in strength. She can only avoid facing her grief for so long before it begins to surface and ultimately spin out of control in a very dangerous way. Can discovering love and lust (simultaneously) help with the grieving process or will it only provide a temporary distraction while waiting for reality to hit full force.


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  2. Get feature Sophie! I'm totally adding this to my TBR list.