Recommended Reads from MWW16

I spent last Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at the Midwest Writers Workshop, where I had a wonderful time networking with authors and industry professionals, catching up with writer friends, and connecting with writers who were new to MWW. It was an amazing weekend, which left me both excited to work on my next project and exhausted from all the activity. Introvert + 3 days of workshops, pitches, networking, and hanging out with friends I rarely see until after midnight = massive conference hangover.

So while I recover, I’m sharing my updated post-conference to-read list. Some of these are books by MWW faculty members, and others are books the faculty recommended.

Beware the Wild.Beware the Wild and Behold the Bones by Natalie C. Parker

Wow, the voice in the opening lines of Beware the Wild is incredible! We read the first two paragraphs in a workshop on voice and dialog in YA, and they were so good part of me wanted to grab the book and read the rest of it right there. I can’t wait to dive into these books. Also, shout-out to the other author who led the workshop, Julie Murphy. If you haven’t read her book Dumplin’ yet, you should.

The Black Hour by Lori Rader-Day

Lori had some interesting marketing techniques, including having a graphic designer friend make T-shirts with a fake crest for the college where this book takes place. She said the setting is based on Northwestern University, and since I’m an NU alum, I love books that take place in the Evanston area. I’ll be looking for those NU landmarks as  read!

Luck, Love & Lemon Pie.Luck, Love & Lemon Pie by Amy E. Reichert

Okay, I may be biased because I’m friends with Amy. But I’m not the only one excited about her books. People magazine reviewed it, and it’s gotten a lot of good buzz in romance/women’s fiction circles. If you haven’t read Amy’s first book, The Coincidence of Coconut Cake, yet, you may want to start there.

The Blood Keeper by Tessa Gratton and The Space Between by Brenna Yovanoff

These were both used as examples in a workshop on first lines, and their openings hooked me. Shout-out again to Natalie C. Parker and Julie Murphy, who are awesome authors and instructors!

I hope there’s something on this list that piques your interest. If you have read-alikes you’d recommend, please share in the comments!

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