Friday, September 25, 2015

Book Review: The Translator by Nina Schuyler


Ever read a story and then find yourself constantly thinking about it? Even long after you read it? This story will do that to you - trust me! The character of Hanne Schubert will inspire you to read your own translations into this interwoven story of language, culture, relationships and regret.
I love when I learn something new from a book. In this case, I knew little about the intricate work translators do as they convert a story from one language into another. It's not as easy a replacing A with B! Translators must rewrite the text so it makes sense not only in both languages, but in both cultures as well. In this story, Hanne Schubert has taken the challenge of translating a Japanese novel into English. She is consumed by the task, so much so, that when she suffers a brain injury from a dramatic fall, she only regains her ability to speak Japanese despite being fluent in several languages.
This fall does more than alter Hanne's ability to communicate, it is the catalyst for Hanne to translate her own life from a new perspective. Hanne travels to Japan where her altered language abilities will help her fit in far better than in San Francisco. Once there, Hanne is hit hard again; this time by the Japanese author who denounces Hanne's translated version of his novel. Seeking to prove him wrong, Hanne seeks the inspiration for the Japanese novel, Moto, a star in the Japanese art of Noh Theater. 
Here's where the story begins to pull at your heart. As Hanne thinks she is researching the Japanese novel's main character, she is truly on an internal journey. Hanne begins to translate her own life through childhood and more recent memories, particularly of her estranged daughter. Sadly, she hasn't seen nor spoken to her grown daughter in over six years. Soon three stories, the original novel Hanne translated, Moto's own burdens and Hanne's family life, come to co-exist with one theme of love, loss and longing.
There are so many lessons of acceptance and the complexity of human nature weaved expertly through this novel. I cried at the ending despite it being the perfect way to pull these three storylines together.  
I won't soon forget The Translator.
Thank you WOW-Women on Writing for providing this stop on Nina Schuyler's blog tour. For more info and tour dates, click here!
THE TRANSLATOR by Nina Schuyler
When renowned translator Hanne Schubert falls down a flight of stairs, she suffers an unusual condition― the loss of her native language. Speaking only Japanese, a language she learned later in life, she leaves for Japan. There, to Hanne’s shock, the Japanese novelist whose work she recently translated confronts her publicly for sabotaging his work.
Reeling, Hanne seeks out the inspiration for the author’s novel ― a tortured, chimerical actor, once a master in the art of Noh Theater. Through their passionate, volatile relationship, Hanne is forced to reexamine how she has lived her life, including her estranged relationship with her daughter. In elegant prose, Nina Schuyler offers a deeply moving and mesmerizing story about language, love, and the transcendence of family.
The Translator won the 2014 Next Generation Indie Book Award for General Fiction and placed second for overall fiction. It was also shortlisted for the William Saroyan International Writing Prize.

About the Author:
Nina Schuyler's first novel, The Painting, (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 2004), was a finalist for the Northern California Book Awards. It was also selected by the San Francisco Chronicle as one of the Best Books of 2004, and dubbed a “fearless debut” by MSNBC and a “great debut” by the Rocky M ountain News. It’s been translated into Chinese, Portuguese, and Serbian.
Her short story, “The Bob Society,” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her poems, short stories and essays have appeared in ZYZZYVA, Santa Clara Review, Fugue, The Meadowland Review, The Battered Suitcase, and other literary journals. She reviews fiction for The Rumpus and The Children’s Book Review. She’s fiction editor at Able Muse.
She attended Stanford University for her undergraduate degree, earned a law degree at Hastings College of the Law and an MFA in fiction with an emphasis on poetry at San Francisco State University. She currently teaches creative writing at the University of San Francisco.
Author's Websites:                 

Nina Schuyler’s website:
Twitter: @Nina_Schuyler

For more information about blog hostess, Audry Fryer,
please visit

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Shared It Like a Good Apple with a Badass Attitude!

Announcing the winner of 
Septem-bah's Super Easy, 
You're Going Love Me For It - I just know it, Chance-To-Win!!!

For sharing it like a good apple with a badass attitude, Angie White Rogers is winner of a $15 Starbucks Card!  

Thank you to each and every one of you who took the time to share SECRETS, LIES AND APPLE PIES on your Facebook page. You are all awesome for helping me find new readers! 

Second Chances are awesome, too! And here's your chance: Go to and enter to win some cool swag by signing up for my email list (I super promise I don't have the energy or the time to clog your inbox - just the occasional newsletter to entertain you!) October's newsletter will have the details for the next Chance to Win!

I love my readers! 
Thank you all so much!!!! 

Beach read season is over! Now what? How about a juicy novel with a spicy Fall setting? Yes, please!

When a random text message appears on her husband’s phone from Josephine, a friend as close as family, Braeburn thinks little of invading Reed’s privacy …until she reads it, “Whatever you do, don’t tell Braeburn.” This trust threatening message combined with an unseasonably early snowfall dangerously coating the country roads near her small Pennsylvania town of Scarlet’s Mill, sends Braeburn careening out of control in more heart pounding ways than one. 

Now, baking apple pies for her sister’s business – despite being horrible at preparing a homemade pie crust – may be Braeburn’s only hope for recovery. Since moving into the farmhouse with her mother at the Scarlet family’s orchard, Braeburn has been tormented by questions surrounding the events on the day of her accident. What was Josephine hiding? Was her entire marriage based on one big lie? And, what are you waiting for? Your next read for Fall is right here: Kindle or Nook!

Friday, September 11, 2015

I want to dance like Uma Thurman

C'mon, do it with me. The parted-fingers-across-your-eyes dance. Yep, feeling it. And, you'll be feelin' it, too, if you win a $15 Starbucks Card. Details below.

(Quick side Note: I wrote this post after listening to Fall Out Boy's new hit song.)


"Bah" as in back-to-school, back-to packing lunches, back-to soccer/dance/scouts not to mention "Parent Night" filling up every free gem of my time. Bah! Someone buy me a pumpkin latte!

Who named her kid, Apple?

Trivia Time! No, it wasn't Uma Thurman, but none other than Gwyneth Paltrow.

Check out my miniature apple trees:

Two years ago, as I was finishing writing SECRETS, LIES AND APPLE PIES, I was flipping through a garden catalog (probably at somebody's soccer practice) and Whoa-Nelly, I came across a listing for two trees with the same apple-y names as the characters in my novel. Chills, right?

This year my little Braeburn and Gala trees have a few apples on them! I'm so excited I'm working the Uma Thurman dance one more time.

Time to bake a pie?

I'll need a few more apples. In the meantime, I'm baking some fun, exciting chances-to-win. Want in? Of course, you do!

Here's Septem-bah's Super Easy, You're Goin' Love Me For It - I just know it, Chance-To-Win:

 One lucky reader can dance like Uma Thurman with one hand and sip her free pumpkin latte in the other! You could score a $15 Starbucks Card simply by liking and sharing a Facebook post. See, super easy. I told ya you're gonna love me for it.

Gimme the details ...

Go to Audry Fryer, Author on Facebook and "like" my page (if you haven't already). There you'll see a post about the chance-to-win/Secrets, Lies and Apple Pies post. Like it, SHARE IT and you're in! The winner will announced on September 23rd (which just happens to be the first day of Autumn around these parts.)

EASY and YOU'LL LOOK SUPER-SMART TO ALL YOUR FRIENDS! I mean, you're sharing one delicious read. (Take a bite, I mean a look: on KINDLE or on NOOKAnd you're among the first to discover it before it becomes a bestseller and then a movie starring Uma Thurman or Gyneth Paltrow or someone like that. And (let's just assume you won), you'll be the envy of everyone in line at Starbucks who has to pay for their cup of steaming serenity. And I'll be forever grateful for your kind act of sharing my work, so you'll score karma points from the universe (if you're into that sort of thing.)

Did someone say, "FREE"? 

Everyone deserves a test drive. And here's the keys: click here!
Yep! Enjoy the first chapter of SECRETS, LIES AND APPLE PIES for .... FREE! Sweeeeet!
(Psst - it's under one of the top tabs. Bonus, there's one for Going Barefoot in Greener Grass, too.)

Why can't we be friends?
We can! We can be like ... like "pen pals". Remember those?
Check out my website: and *sign-up!
The next chance-to-win is awesome! Ooo, but it's a secret. To be revealed in my next newsletter ...

(*I promise I won't clog your e-mail box with desperate pleas to buy my books or share your address or throw a virtual pie in your face.  - that last one's more funny after you read the book. Nope. None of that. Only a newsletter, from time to time, to let you know the awesome ways I plan to entertain you with page-turning stories and fabulous freebies, giveaways and chances to win!)

Thanks Friends! Now, go to Audry Fryer, Author & share with wild abandon like these two!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

How This Procrastinator Spent Her Summer

Oh crap, it's September! Thus ending my procrastination vacation.

It seems like only yesterday, my kids and I were picking strawberries. Of course, that was when the days were lost in endless rays of sunshine and I was celebrating finishing my third novel by deciding to take a break before jumping into the editing process. (Ah, sweet memories of strawberry shortcake and whipped cream.)

I thought about starting my fourth novel. I actually came up with a story idea. But then, there were movies to see: Inside Out and Minions. Plus, it seemed like it was everybody's birthday including my twin's ninth birthday which meant a trip to the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia.

I opened and promptly closed the file for How Lucy Got Lucky. How could I edit when we when heading to the Delaware Seashore for the week?

Never too late to procrastinate.
All the other days seem to be a blur between swimming in our temporary, waist-high, bought at Wal-Mart pool and evening campfires.

Do I regret my procrastination vacation?
Not one bit. Spending quality time with my family made it all worth it. Plus, it gave my mind time to breathe and rejuvenate. Now, as it's time to get back to chasing my big author dreams, I'm tempted to skip the return flight home. I figure fear of promoting my work and risking rejection may be the culprit. Better pack my bags and head to the motivation station. (See what I did there? Ha!)

Annnnnd that brings us to ...
September. It's like an unofficial new year. I've already started making resolutions. Have I started doing them? Sure, right after I'm done buying school supplies. Oh, and Riley needs a treat!

Look deep into those puppy dog eyes.
They're begging you to visit
Don't Procrastinate! Go now!
A novel of delicious deceptions