The Hawthorne Legacy (The Inheritance Games #2)The Hawthorne Legacy by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

It was cute. Not amazing. The love story felt forced. There were far fewer games or puzzles in this book than there were in the previous installment, which was disappointing, because without the puzzles and with a cringe-y love story, there simply wasn't a lot to keep readers wanting more. The characters showed very little growth or depth and the prose was just okay.

Overall, an adequate follow-up to the Inheritance Games.

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The past two months have brought a lot of big changes for me. Good changes, bad changes, neutral changes.

Let's start with the good:

CODY MATTHIS is back on submission! And... I've already gotten three full requests. It's a waiting game now. I'm hopeful, but I also know that publishing is a very subjective process, and that there's never any guarantee that a book will be picked up, and even if a book doesn't get picked up it doesn't mean the book wasn't any good. There's so much that goes into the decision on the publisher's end, it would be impossible to give every author their dream. So I can't get hurt feelings if it doesn't get picked up. I just keep on trying.

ALYSSA'S PLAYLIST is on hiatus right now. It's being re-read by my agent (and another at her agency) so I'm hoping to get some notes back on it and get it ready to put on submission soon.


I finished MY MOTHER'S DAUGHTER (previously named Forty Weeks), and I really feel it might be the best thing I've ever written. It just feels so right. I feel good about it. So I'm anxious to get feedback from beta readers, then send it to my agent.

My mom read my short story "A Game of Chance," and totally started bawling. I know I shouldn't gloat, but it's kind of nice to know it hit right.

Also... I booked a writing retreat for myself! Four nights in a small town just outside of Mesa Verde National Park! I'm going to hike in the mornings, eat lunch at a cafe, and write all afternoon and evening. And the best part... I'll be completely, utterly, 100% ALONE!

Now for bad/neutral news:

Work has thrown a lot of curveballs my way, and I don't feel like I'm handling them as well as I could. Basically, the Physics and Physical Science teacher at our school had to quit for medical reasons (or so he said). And... because I'm certified in both math and science, guess who got to move to a brand new subject in the middle of the school year?

Me! That's who!

It has been a huge change. New classroom, new students, new subject matter. I feel like I'm just barely hanging on each day, trying to survive. Lesson plans are a joke. They're not nearly as engaging as I want them to be, I'm just trying to make sure I'm teaching correct information.

The students have taken it in stride, it's a huge change for them too, but I can tell some of the classes have gotten used to talking all hour and not learning anything.

On top of that, science teachers are required to sponsor students to present projects for an annual STEM festival, which is in... 2 weeks! I've been working with some students, but it feels so rushed and last-minute. I'm stressed.

Stress means very little writing gets done. But I am watching a whole lot of Netflix!

I watched the entirety of Supernatural, Don't F*ck With Cats, the documentary about Aaron Hernandez, Crown, and now I'm bingeing on Merlin, because Colin Morgan was in an episode of Crown and had a HUGE glow up. Super cute now.

Eventually I will get back to The Monstrosity (aka SIX SECRETS, but I want to re-name it) because I really feel like it's my opus. It's THE project, the one that really defines me. I'm probably crazy. But I want to get it just right.

That's what I've been up to, lately! Here's hoping I get back into the writing swing and start making good things happen.

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