BREAKING NEWS! TRUTH BE TOLD (Agatha WINNER and a Library Journal Best of 2014) is out in paperback TODAY! Library Journal said “Drop everything and binge read to the mind-boggling conclusion!”
So, binge now, okay? And listen to this: If you send me proof of purchase--I’ll send you a paperback of THE OTHER WOMAN. (Just click here and click on contact.)
MORE BREAKING NEWS: The amazing Laura DiSilverio’s new book THE RECKONING STONES is out next week, and the Library Journal starred review says—well, it says a lot of wonderful stuff. But the headline word is: OUTSTANDING!
But you know Laura. Her headline word is: fun. And: family. I know her well, though, and can reveal her imagination is, well, remarkable. And today, in these waning days of summer, if you and our family are thinking about adventures? Laura has some hilarious ideas about where NOT to go.
Not Your Father's Amusement Park
This summer, the fam and I headed to Universal Studios in Florida to visit Harry Potter World. It has long been my older daughter's dream, and so, to celebrate her 18th birthday, we packed our sunblock, hats, shorts, and bug spray to take on Florida in late June. I will say up front that I am not a theme park person. They cost too much (waaay too much), they're crowded, hot and loud. Despite that, the Harry Potter attractions captivated me with their attention to detail, whimsy, and thrills.
My daughter teared up on several occasions, standing in Diagon Alley and outside Hogwarts, and said, "This is where I grew up." It brings me to tears as I type this.
However, this is not going to be a melancholy post.
Seeing how beautifully--and realistically-- J.K. Rowling's books were brought to life made me speculate about theme parks based on other book series, and I came up with a Top Ten list of the book series that would make the worst amusement parks.
10. Little House on the Prairie. Riding in a covered wagon pulled by animatronic oxen is no one's idea of a thrill, and those with a yen for constructing log cabins can report to their nearest Habitat for Humanity build site.
9. Michael Shaara's Civil War 1861-1865 series (Gods & Generals, et al). War sucks. The Civil War sucked more than most. Fighting against kin. Gangrene and amputations. Slash and burn warfare. Not much here to appeal to most amusement park enthusiasts. Do a tour of Civil War battlefields instead.
8. The Mitford Series. Resisting temptation, a church service or two, some pastoral counseling, and a bucolic setting. Let's just say the Disney corporation isn't battling for the rights to this series with an eye toward putting The Mitford Moral Dilemma Roller Coaster next to Space Mountain.
7. Not really a series, but Anything by Dickens. Grinding poverty, noxious smells, rats the size of capybaras, class warfare. If that's what you're after, take a walking tour of Mumbai. (Airfare to India would be only marginally more expensive than entry to a standard amusement park.)
6. Stephanie Plum. Once you get past the exploding cars and the Ranger/Morelli whiplash ride, there's not much there.
5. Kay Scarpetta. With a body farm as the main attraction, homeowners downwind will organize and get this one shut down before it opens to the public.
4. Most cozy series. I envision this park as a cross between a cat sanctuary and an upscale tea house. Each ticket has a recipe printed on it, and the "Main Street" equivalent is lined with muffin, cupcake, cheese, spice, pie, cookie, fudge and donut shops. There would also be libraries, bookstores, and specialty boutiques. Absolutely no thrill rides. Come to think of it, it might be my kind of theme park.
3. Madeline. Lines are a staple at amusement parks, but requiring visitors to walk in two straight lines all the time is really over the top. Uniforms, school, and nuns are not what most kids want from their amusement park vacation.
2. The Hunger Games. There'd be plenty of thrills, of course, but being handed a body bag on entry might quench people's enthusiasm, and there wouldn't be much repeat business since only one customer a day would get to leave the park.
1. Fifty Shades of Grey. All together now: Ewwww.
So, that's my take on the series that wouldn't make successful theme parks. Add your ideas in the comments, or suggest some series that would make amazing amusement parks. You never know--the folks at Disney or Universal Studios might be listening!
(The astute among you will have noticed this post has nothing to do with the book I'm here to promote, The Reckoning Stones, my first standalone suspense novel that Romantic Times award four stars! (And a starred review from Library Journal!) I hope you'll check it out, though, and pre-order a copy. It'll be in your mailbox or e-reader queue on Sep 8th.
The Reckoning Stones is darker and edgier than my cozy books, but not graphic, with a heroine who was molested by her pastor as a young teen. She ran away the same night someone beat the pastor into a coma, and grew up to be the emotionally troubled but brilliant jewelry designer Iris Dashwood. When the pastor awakens 22 years later, she returns to Colorado to confront him and find the truth of what happened the night she left. She might be able to disperse old demons, rekindle family relationships and find redemption . . . if she survives.)
HANK: YAY! And we’ll award a paperback of Laura’s other books to one lucky commenter!
(And don’t forget the TRUTH BE TOLD offer above!)