I have so much to say about Megan Miranda‘s debut YA book FRACTURE, I don’t know where to begin. So please excuse a bit of rambling.
I love meeting writers and then reading their work. It’s fascinating to me to see the face, eyes, smile and body language behind the creative force. Plus, those I have met are supportive, and nothing is better than a published author cheering on a writer who is trying to get published.
I met Miranda at the SCBWI Carolina’s event a few weeks back. I wasn’t sure how I would approach her, until I read the cover of FRACTURE. It reads: a lot can happen in eleven minutes
Now, you probably don’t know that the number 11 is magical in my life. All sorts of good and bad things happen on 11. I’ll give you a few instances so you can get an idea: My house burned down in November (11) got married the first time on 11/4 and divorced on 4/11. My daughter was born on 3/26, add those up=11 at 6:50PM (6+5=11) I look at the clock practically every day at 11:11. You may think I’m reaching, but I’m not 11’s are everywhere in my life. So when I read the tag line, knowing Megan couldn’t have ever known it would mean anything spectacular to me, I had to meet her and ask her why 11. The trick is how to introduce myself and not scare her. 🙂
The SCBWI Carolina’s Fall Conference had an evening event that allowed everyone to nosh and get books autographed. It was my chance to meet Megan, or so I thought. Megan’s book sold out at the event, I had nothing for her to sign. I walked up to her and saw one book sitting by her and asked if I could have that one, but unfortunately it was Alan Gratz‘s. I was bummed and pulled out my phone and ordered it immediately on amazon.com. Luckily the next morning, during the last event, I was seated in the back of the room, and had to leave for a moment to use the restroom. I pulled a chair out of the row so as not to disturb anyone else. When I returned Megan had taken my place. Opportunity!
I waited for a break in the action and wrote her a note, yes just like I was still in school, and asked if she wrote locally. (I was curious who at the conference was local and a potential critique partner in the future) Then when the speaker was done I asked her about the 11 minute thing and told her how that number was important to me. She got it and then asked me about my book. I gave her my little pitch on LIFE-LIKE and she said it was the kind of thing she liked. I told her my first page was read the night before and she remembered it, in a good way. I liked her. I like her science background, my dad is a chemical engineer, and I like how cool she is.
Fast forward to yesterday. I spent all day reading, which is a serious luxury. I read FRACTURE. I didn’t want to stop reading FRACTURE. I was mesmerized by the similarities in our story in the first ten pages. We had parallel set ups and relationships between characters. It was fascinating to me, despite the thread of similarities, that we had unique perspectives on best friends who are a boy and a girl, who love each other but can’t figure it out. In both of our stories, friends pull apart and may not recover. A single event changes her protagonist Delany’s life as does an event alter my Liv. Yet, ultimately LIFE-LIKE and FRACTURE are nothing alike. And that’s the magic of writing. Each writer has their own spin on a story.
Megan’s writing is clean and sharp. Her characters are vivid and the tension builds with the turn of every page. I marvel at how she dropped clues, weaved in danger, pity, lust, and pain. I envy the speed at which she is able to crank out a draft or three. It took her a year to write and rewrite FRACTURE.
So to sum it up, Megan Miranda’s FRACTURE is a must read. Pick it up. Don’t be embarrassed if you are not a teen. Download it to your Kindle or Nook, no one will know what book it is that you can’t put down. I look forward to her next book HYSTERIA, coming out in February 2013. And a fun bit of trivia, she wrote HYSTERIA first, but she didn’t get a deal until she wrote FRACTURE and then sold both. Proving once again, you can’t always know your path to success.