Paranormal fiction and urban fantasy books are plentiful these days, but a large portion of them are vapid. Allie Beckstrom, the heroine in Devon Monk’s “Magic in the…” series, is a welcome contrast to the genre’s disappointingly passive Twilight female characters.   TV shows such as Buffy, Charmed, and So Weird made common the genre’s kick-ass female characters, and opened the door for urban paranormal’s expanding popularity. The burgeoning teen fiction/young adult market, born with the huge demographic hump of Gen Y, cemented gothy/vampy/werewolfy/witchy/faery stories as a permanent fixture at Barnes&Noble. Yet, as the genre boomed, its greatest strength declined in favor of the lowestRead More →

A digital accounting of my life: 1. 100+ emails in my work inbox. Read, yes, but sitting there unsorted and unattended to. 2. 200+ emails in my home inbox. Same as above. 3. 7 pages of links in my “Read it Later” tool bar. 4. 9 rows of links in my nifty Firefox Multirow Toolbar. 5. In the neighborhood of 500 bookmarks in severe need of pruning. 6. A complete lack of synch between my office computer, home computer, and flash drive. 7. I have no idea what’s going on with the BP oil spill or Elena Kagan’s nomination for the SCOTUS. 8. My digitalRead More →