The Second Daughter by J. Jeffrey
Genre: Literary Fiction, Women’s Fiction
Word count: 95,000
It had started out well. Umbrellas tangled. A storybook romance followed. A wonderful wedding. A beautiful, sweet first daughter. They were complete, a family, happy.
And then they went and had another daughter.
Her charming fraud of a father starts disappearing, then worse, coming back. Her once sweet older sister resents her, and the sisters are at constant war. Her poor harried mother is so busy what-iffing about the life she might have had that she overlooks the life she is actually having. Everyone blames younger daughter Debra for everything as the family disintegrates. Along the way there are secrets and lies, heartbreaks and betrayals, plus the dramatic unexpected death of a central character at a pivotal moment. Debra, now a young woman, finds herself living awkwardly alone with her embittered mother when the phone rings—and her mother’s secret past suddenly crashes back into the present. Their life may be about to change forever; or rather, perhaps, revert back to what it should have been all along.
But not because of that phone call, as it turns out.
Because of the remarkable second daughter. For what Debra Gale has is unyielding determination. What she has is an irrepressible capacity to love.
And now at last what she has is a chance.
The complex dynamics of a changing family. Mother, daughters, sisters, and the father who both divides and unites them. A fair amount of banana cream pie. The Second Daughter: a funny but poignant, unusual but beautiful love story.
Twelve-year-old Helga has more danger in her life than most beasts her age—Wrackshee slavers after her, an attack by bandits that nearly kills her, a race against dragons pursuing her, and leading a rebellion against the insidious WooZan. And that is just the beginning. What do you expect from a young beast who just can’t accept things as they are? Taking on not just one, but two all-powerful, supreme tyrants in two different realms, Helga and her eccentric comrades defeat tyranny and slavery not by battling to the last beast standing, but by being the first to think differently.
Helga: Out of Hedgelands, the young adult fantasynovel by Rick Johnson, is available through Amazon.com and Amazon UK.
Don’t forget, you can cast your vote for trailer of the month on March 30, 2013 at 5 p.m. Pacific time.
If ever a genie wants to grant me three wishes, I am all set. First, I would wish to always stay at the perfect weight, no matter how much I ate. Next, I would wish for financial security, so that I could quit my day job and never have to take another one. And my third wish would be for Amazon and Smashwords to insist that every indie title be vetted by a competent proofreader before they will publish it.
I admit it: I’m picky. It’s probably because I internalized grammar and spelling rules early. Please don’t hurt me, but I was one of those annoying kids in school who always got good grades on her English papers. I was a spelling whiz, too. One of my college journalism professors gave his classes a test on commonly-misspelled words at the beginning each semester. I had two classes with him, so I had to take the test twice. When I aced the thing for the second time, he wrote on my paper, “People in radio don’t need to know how to spell!” I’m still not sure whether he was trying to recruit me for the student newspaper. (And if he was, then it’s clear that he never saw my grade in photography.) Continue reading “Between You and Me, Grammar Matters”