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Confessions of a book reviewer by Tracy Diane Miller

I have a confession to make: I’m addicted to writing book reviews.

I am seduced by the imaginary world created by authors. My body craves the drugs of well-written characters and plots.

I have a confession to make: I am addicted to books. And I don’t want to be cured.

My addiction started when I was a child. I remember being excited when a teacher assigned book reports. I was happy I would be able to read books and share my thoughts via a book report. I can recall thinking how incredible it would be if I could tell the author how grateful I was to be able to enjoy their work. Sadly, my fascination with dead poets made it impossible to thank them for their ability to weave verse.

But last year, something wonderful occurred. I became a book reviewer who was privileged to interview authors. I could review books and then engage the author about his or her writing process and journey towards publication. I was in heaven.

I discovered three amazing writers: Lisa N. Edwards, Tracie Banister and Megan Padalecki. These women create rich characters and stories. While their paths towards publication may differ, their writing talent is unquestioned. Their ability to emotionally grip readers and inspire us is a gift.

Lisa N. Edwards books Can’t Fight Fate and Chasing Butterflies examine the question of pre-destiny and how it shapes our lives. Edwards writes strong characters that face life’s challenges with fortitude. Her characters are beautifully courageous, yet also, beautifully flawed. Consequently, they mirror us. As you read a Lisa N. Edwards book, you can’t help but feel that you grow as a person. Edwards writing is subtle but powerfully effective.

Tracie Banister’s writing style is so inviting that you feel as though she has been prowling around your brain and capturing your emotions. Her characters are your family and your friends. You love them. They make you angry. Despite everything, you want them in your life. Her books Twin Piques, In Need of Therapy and Blame It On The Fame accomplish an amazing feat of introducing a variety of unique characters with different voices and motivations. How she manages to keep all of these characters’ voices distinct and interesting is incredible.

Megan Padalecki is a new children’s book author poised to take the genre by storm. What I admire about Megan is her journey towards becoming a writer. She is a trained architect who was courageous enough to take a leap of faith to achieve her dream of becoming a writer. Having attended law school, spent decades working in the legal profession and now finally making the transition towards becoming a poet, I respect and identify with Megan’s hard fought journey.

Megan created a wonderful character Big Mo. Big Mo is a pet iguana who has an insatiable appetite. When his hunger forces him to leave his home and travel in search of food, readers learn an invaluable lesson about conservation. Preserving the beauty of the Earth’s natural resources is the prevailing theme.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Lisa N. Edwards, Tracie Banister and Megan Padalecki. I was struck by their passion for writing and their honesty in highlighting the challenges they faced in publishing their books.

Edwards, Banister and Padalecki are currently writing new books. These books are expected to be released sometime this year.

I am a book reviewer. And I have a confession to make. I’m VERY excited about reading their new books and interviewing Edwards, Banister and Padalecki again in 2016!