Book Jacket

 

rank 1672
word count 19049
date submitted 13.03.2009
date updated 31.03.2009
genres: Fiction, Fantasy, Young Adult
classification: moderate
incomplete

The Adrian Chronicles

Jennifer Justice

Adrian Youth Facilities is a dumping ground for those children society didn't want. Now, three teens must prove they're more than the world believes.

 

Adrian Youth Facilities is a home for the kids that society has rejected—orphans, juvies, bastards, and anyone else the general public would like to forget. Adrian promises reformation and gives the world an excuse to look the other way.
For Lynx, a human thief with a penchant for mischief, Adrian is an opportunity to grab a few free meals. For Virala, the half-breed stepchild of a councilor, it’s a chance to reinvent herself. And for Red, a young werewolf with a troubled past, it’s a place where he might actually belong.
Before they can settle into their new territory, however, the entire campus is threatened when Fang, its most dangerous resident, begins a rampage that could tear it apart. It’s then that the Adrian outcasts must prove that they have a worth the rest of the world never imagined.

 
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tags

approval, coming of age, elf, elves, fantasy, juvenile delinquents, juvie, magic, teenagers, teens, urban fantasy, violence, werewolf, werewolves

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32 comments

 

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abonilla wrote 1867 days ago

Jennifer:
I've just finished chapter 1. This is great stuff! It has a very Melissa Marr feel to it and almost a kind-of X-Men quality ;) My only suggestion would be that this seems a bit long for a first chapter. I have a feeling that the four stories are going to converge into one, but it might fare better as two separate chapters. I'm definitely going to shelf this one, just give me a couple days to clear my shelf, I hate to turn around backed books too quickly.

Good luck with this!!

-Mandy

jcheney wrote 908 days ago

Just started reading this and was hooked. Great characters that pull you in immediately. I like that you start out with small hints of the overall story to be told but rely on the familiar to pull the reader in. Great descriptions. Backed.

Dale C. wrote 1203 days ago

I still love this, Jen. I would love to see the rest of it.

Haybell wrote 1228 days ago

This is really good so far. It's holding my interest. I think my favorite character is Switch. She's confusing, but also easy to relate to. I like her character and what you have done with her. I also like Mutt. he seems cool and also acts like he could be a good friend to her.

Lynx... wow i only got one word for him. Crazy. He picks fights, he steals, he presses your buttons, but gosh does he sound hot! lol. I liked him, though Red is the one i'd pick out of the two boys.

I like Red's character. he seems to need to be in a pack and he has somewhat found that in the pack he is in now. i can't wait to find out what happens next and to see how Fang comes into play with Wolfie!! Definitely putting this on my watch list!!

Owen Quinn wrote 1469 days ago

What a intriguing premise and I wasn't disappointed. The world is credible with sharp dialogie and vivid imagery. The setting has an air of otherworldlyness to it like stepping onto the Hogwarts train. i can see this as a tv series. backed.

samoana75 wrote 1535 days ago

hmmm... a bit confusing as there are so many characters being introduced all telling to the story from their POVs. It might be useful to maybe narrow the narrators down to two main characters? The idea is interesting and the story so far kept me reading on even with the confusion of so many characters and so many different races. will add to watchlist and wish you good luck.

Dale C. wrote 1694 days ago

I thought I already had this on my shelf, but it wasn't on there. In any case, it's on there now. Good stuff.

StirlingEditor wrote 1773 days ago

Hi Jennifer,
I've had you on my WL for an age. I apologize for the lengthy delay. Novel revisions and work have been keeping me from Autho of late.

I like the story concept here--great pitch!! Like Harry Potter with a twist. I've always loved stories revolving around schools, and I think this would have a great audience. The main thing I can suggest for improvement is to raise the stakes of the ending for Chapter 1. Cliffhangers, foreshadowing, an inciting incident that is not yet resolved--these are all ways you can upgrade your ending there to ensure we have to turn the page to read on. Also, because we don't understand yet why Tilla shouldn't be wielding forks, the ending scene loses impact. If there is any way to introduce (or even foreshadow) the main antagonist in Chapter 1 I highly recommend doing so.


"Brynn resisted the urge to wince..." This paragraph confused me somewhat. Brynn doesn't seem to know who the girl's roommate is while she's ticking off numbers in her head. But then they get to the door, and without opening it, she suddenly realizes who's room it is. Wouldn't she rather figure it out the moment the door is open and she sees whose stuff is in there? Hmm...

...Brynn could have sworn the girl was about to cry. "Should...shouldn't I..." This is the one time I noticed this but it might be worth a browse of your manuscript to see if this problem is elsewhere. Generally, it is recommended to use one character POV per paragraph. In the above example, the action beats are Brynn's but the dialogue is the young girl's. This confuses the reader visually. I have posted a detailed explanation about burying dialogue in this forum thread, which you might find helpful:
http://www.authonomy.com/Forum/Posts.aspx?threadId=24789 (first couple of pages I think)
. I do this ALL the time, so I'm currently going through my manuscript fixing this issue. *sigh* It takes forever.

"dark haired girl" Hyphenate dark-haired. Recommend doing a search for this as I've seen it several times in your chapter 1 alone.

"doing her best" Repeated twice in the same paragraph.

"Brynn gave a bitter smile." Insert "her" after gave.

"half paying attention" Consider: half-listening

Adrian Chronicles SHELVED because I can see an audience for this book, perhaps even me!

Best to you,
~Cheri

Jemstone wrote 1797 days ago

Jennifer,

I almost didn't back this because it just wasn't grabbing me. However, when I got to chapter three, I realized maybe you had something. I think you should consider putting chapter three first. I have the idea that you are introducing your various characters. If that is so, perhaps the order of the introductions is not as important as being able to grab the reader quickly. There is nothing wrong with the chapter about the tiny half-elf. I wanted to see how things worked out with her and Dren, but maybe with the were-critters in the back of my mind, that scenario would take on even more interest.

I think the story is good, and once you hit your stride, the writing was very good as well. However, I think it needs a lot of polishing and I give some examples below.

--------------

she should just walk away...and walking away. Similar words too close together. Try "and leaving" instead.

--------------

Sen only had a moment to let her eyes widen before she was pulled out of the doorway by Lynx. She was trapped in the circle of his arms.

passive voice--try this instead

Sen's eyes widened briefly before Lynx pulled her out of the doorway. He trapped her in the circle of his arms.

--------------

Too many cliches: cat got your tongue, died and gone to heaven, mystery meat, excuse for a. . .

--------------

Still, he'd still -- needs reworking

--------------

Red had little warning. . .Red shoved himself up. . . -- Not necessary to name him a second time

--------------

None of these are as serious as not grabbing the reader's attention as quickly as possible, and I think that is easily fixed. As always, my comments can be safely ignored.

Shelved, and best wishes on your book.
Jim Murphy

Fandelion wrote 1802 days ago

Hi Jennifer,

You caught me and held on - I'll admit I'm a sucker for elves and werewolves etc, but even so, good job. Love the second chapter where we fully flesh out what the situation is. More importantly, I love the sense of understanding and intelligence you imbue your characters with. It all came together with the words 'he knew, all too well, what disillusionment looked like'.

Nitpicks: There's a smattering of minor typos and a cliche or two, but nothing to really bring up. The only 'real' nitpick isn't actually a nitpick - it's elves. While I love them, I've been told by an 'industry insider' that publishers don't like them. While your story kind of 'breaks the mold', I'm not sure it'll be enough to punch through a publisher's expectations. Just something to think about.

Overall, I loved it. Bookshelving immediately.

Cheers
Chris

Mary W Walters wrote 1803 days ago

Intriguing set-up, distinctive characters, interesting plot developments and a suitably ominous setting: all the components that make for a popular young adult novel. I am happy to back this and wish you every success with it.

Best wishes,

Mary

Charity Shindle wrote 1810 days ago

Jennifer,
Sorry it took me so long the flu attached me.
I like that you started with “Welcome to Adrian,” it was nice to have the door opened for me. Your character names are brilliant, Tilla, Brynn, and Dren…perfect. The dialogue flowed and I felt eased into the storyline. On my shelf.
See you in print,
Charity

Katrina Twitchett wrote 1810 days ago

Hi Jennifer,

Apologies for time taken - been busy and been away - but have read the first few chapters and find this story moving at a great pace (although sometimes I would quite like a little more description to allow me a breathing space and to learn a little more of the subtleties). The writing is for the most part very flowing. Occasionally I felt that some trimming could be possible (we are all guilty of that - I am currently trying to lose 10k). Certainly an interesting start to what promises to be a fun read.

I am happy to shelve and of course wish you all the best.

Kat x

brian d wrote 1815 days ago

Jennifer. I just read all 8 chapters you have posted here. I think you're like 95% there with just a few things to fix. You write very well. But once in a while I got caught on a jarring sentence that just started out clunky and awkward and then got worse, for instance in chap 5--

Redistributing her aquired lunch so that it wasn't threatening to spill form her arms, she made her was to one of the wooden benches that graced the edge of the wide, grassy lawn that made up the center of the facility.

There just has to be an easier way for you to say that. I realise that my own manuscript is probably full of such writing too. But sometimes it is hard to spot it in your own book though. However when you spot it in anothers writing it really sticks out.

As I read this I got the feeling I was reading something Charles deLint may have written. And so when I went back and looked at your profile and saw that you list him as one of your favorite authors I was not suprised. This has a very deLint quality to it. That is a compliment. I've read most of his stuff.

Anyway, I think you move the story along at a rather brisk pace. Maybe too brisk. At times I wish you would kinda slow the writing down a tad and explain a little bit more of this world and environment you've created. You hit us pretty heavy with a lot of charecters very quickly; elfs, half elves, werewolves, werefelines, ect, ect, all with names like Lynx and Red, Brinn, Tylla, Doggy and Puppy. This is fine, but I wish you took just a few more sentences to describe them and who they are. You also need to flesh out this youth facility, what it looks like, why it exists (or perhaps you're saving to reveal why it exists till later in the story).

I like chap 8 the best. Lynx sneaking around and getting caught by the gaurd. Again, you mention some of the gaurds and how they can see through walls and stuff, but it is only briefly mentioned is all. Perhaps the story would be better served if you showed us some more of that, maybe add a bit more danger and mystery to the gaurds. I didnt get the sense that they were threatening at all.

After 8 chapters i still felt I was wandering around a little bit lost in this world you've created. I don't really know what the youth acadamy is for and why the kids are there and why some of them are elfs and some human and some werewolves. You only say that they are the bastards and outcasts and those society wishes to forget. But why? And why put them in this youth faciltity?

At one point you have a kid turning into a bird, and this is suprising to Virala, but when Virala introduces herself as a werewolf upon entering the acadamy nobody seems at all concerned. Again, why? The magical element to this story is just assumed by all of your charecters, but the reader (even after chapter 8) is left a bit lost as to what exactly is going on.

All in all, I think your idea is a great one. A youth facility for misfits. I do really like the idea. And you are a very good writer. I think this idea would appeal to junior high school aged kids.

brian d

EisleyJacobs wrote 1827 days ago

Ooooh! I wish I had time to finish what I have started!!! I don't have much to say, nothing really suck out like a sore thumb. You did have a lot going on and quick. I thought it was a little hard to keep up with but I did ok. Only had to look back once or twice. But that is just because I like SEEING a story I read exactly as it happens, how the reader paints the pic for me. And you did a good job.

Cy wrote 1835 days ago

Jennifer,
I've had you on my WL for some time now and just got to reading...wish I had earlier! I've really enjoyed it. I feel it is unique and although it isn't what I would normally read, I kept going and would probably buy it at a store. Shelved!
Cy
the Neverlight

Janet Marie wrote 1836 days ago

Hi Jennifer.

Interesting premise. You combine stark hardships with intense suspense regarding their safety. Your characterization is packed with justified reactions and by using excellent dialogue of supporting characters. You have numerous villians and one feels tense, trying to anticipate which will put the terrified characters in harms way. Man's eternal quest to survive is clearly presented.

Shelved. Warmest regards. Janet Marie

Vigorio wrote 1847 days ago

Fascinating premise and story with strong writing. I enjoyed this. Shelved.
Rebecca

Djedra wrote 1851 days ago

It is a fascinating world you've created and I was particularly impressed by your dialogue, which retains a gritty edge despite the fantastical elements in your story. The writing is strong and engaging.
I did find the sheer number of characters quite daunting. Don't be afraid to give more time to each one. Chapter one seemed to chop and change quite a lot, but I wanted to stay with Cindae for a while. There were enough hooks in that section to keep me curious. The introduction of a half-elf, for a start, made me ask all kinds of questions about the world I was being invited into. But, as we moved from scene to scene, I lost the thread a little because of the numerous introductions.
I think your writing has great promise and this story looks ideal for the young adult audience you've suggested. Good luck with it.

rachelstar wrote 1855 days ago

Hey Jennifer,
I finished your first chapter and am very intrigued with the world you've created. I like that you have three different people's stories who I'm assuming will intertwine later on in the story. The chapter seems long, but I was kept very interested the whole time. You intertwined teenage life with fantasy in a casual way, which brings the reader right into your world. Great job!
-Rachel

Debbie wrote 1860 days ago

Your characters are great. I love the little details that make them come alive. There are some good descriptions which really show us these people, but I did have problems with understanding what was actually going on here.

Ok, in chapter 1 we have essentially 4 scenes: 1) Cindae/Brynn/Dren/Tilla in – where? Somewhere where they share rooms and have no choice. And why can’t she have a fork? OK, I can go with that – you’ll doubtless explain later. 2) Lynx/Cinnia in a kitchen – where? Same place as scene 1? What’s going on in the cellar? I don’t know. But again I’ll go with you. 3) Virala and her father – where? At home, presumably. She’s being sent to Adrian Youth Facilities. Why? It appears to be a bad thing. By now I’m getting confused with all these people and no real idea of who they are or where they are. 4) Red and a werewolf in the cafeteria. And I’m lost now.

In themselves, each of these scenes is great. There are just - in my opinion - too many of them without the glue to stick them together or the skeleton to hang them on at present.

Now chapter 2 is much better IMO. There’s a sense of place – an introduction to Lynx which tells me who he is and where he is and makes me care about him (in chapter 1 I didn’t because I had no idea what was going on). And then in Virala’s scene again you spend some time showing us who she is and making us care about her.

For me – and this is only my opinion, I’d have found this easier to read if you’d started at chapter 2 and introduced us to one main character, 2 with Virala. Then you could have fed the chapter 1 scenes in later on, when we have enough sense of place to understand what’s happening.

By chapter 3, you’re starting to flesh things out more. The dialogue is good and again your characters are showing us their stories. It’s coming together and your writing is more polished. I do wonder if you wrote chapter 1 much later on – when the story was fully formed in your head and therefore you are seeing far more in your head than you’re actually telling the reader on the page. Then again, it may be me – see what other comments you get.

I enjoyed reading this very much. It’s a very unique idea in a genre all of its own and I think there’s a real market for this kind of thing. Good luck with this!

JasonDiggy wrote 1863 days ago

Hi! I have to issue my standard disclaimer that this is not my genre, but you certainly seem to master it. It's well written and there's enough going on to keep readers interested, for sure. Your premise is a good one, leaving so many opportunities for other books to follow. My only issues are a small one and one somewhat bigger. The small issue is the similarity between Cindae and Cinnia, especially when you start using Cin. I was confused. The bigger issue is all the characters. I don't know how long this work will be, but I worry there may be too many characters to give the reader any depth as to who they are. In any case, you have something here. I predict this will rise in the ranks here--as it should!

Michael

HLH22 wrote 1863 days ago

My thoughts so far:
Short pitch - This looks interesting.
Long pitch - What? Werewolves? Hmm.. not too sure.
Chapter 1 - I'm hooked!

PATRICK BARRETT wrote 1865 days ago

Jennifer, I can see all the points you made very clearly just by reading your book. I can sense the story approaching and picture the characters whilst the pace carries me along. Not my usual genre but you create a need to see what happens next. On my shelf, please don't tread on Cuthbert on your way to the top.
Patrick Barrett (Shakespeares Cuthbert)

Jeff Blackmer wrote 1866 days ago

Jen,
I like this. Well written, nice dark mood to it. It reminds to a bit too much of the X-men, but it;s a good story with lots of possibilities and good characters.
On my shelf.
Jeff

Jinxy wrote 1866 days ago

Ok...so I've come to read this with a certain amount of nervousness because the pitch sounded startlingly similar to one of my own, although my book Under a Full Moon isn't public on this site at the moment.

Firstly, I'm quite pleased that it's nothing similar! Lol.

So onto what you have up here.

I'm a huge fan of urban fantasy - so a good werewolf tale is always fun. But my main thing when reading this was that I lost track slightly. You introduced me to so many characters so quickly that it was a bit confusing. I think you could slow that down a bit. Let us get to know each character a bit more slowly so that we can connect to them before we meet the next one.

The other slight problem for me personally were the names. Are these nicknames or real names?

Which brings me to my last point. I have no idea where I am in this story. Is it this world? Or another world? Werewolves and the like fit fine into the urban fantasy realm - but then half-elves suggest another world. There is also the fact that all these different races seem completely familiar with each other - which again suggests another world.

Of course these are all plot and story issues rather than writing or style. Which I did like for the most part. I felt occasionally I got lost in too many descriptions of hair colour and the like. But then I tend towards styles of writing where the only descriptions I get are the ones that are essential to the story.

I'm going to come and have another read of this soon.

JanJ wrote 1867 days ago

Jennifer,
You do have a wide variety of characters but the story is coming along nicely, bringing all of them together into one place. I notice another small typo in chapter 3 paragraph 1 (groups kids) other than that I didn't notice any errors. Looks like a well thought out story is unfolding with a mixture of events. The dialogue is engaging, not quite sure who the MC is yet but maybe we have a host of them in this story..:) Actually this is a rather unusual style of writing that I kind of like.
I'm giving it a turn on my shelf.
Thanks for the entertaining read
Jan

JanJ wrote 1867 days ago

Jennifer,
This is very good writing but I had to stop to jot down a very small typo I noticed. If I don't do it now, I will get so engrossed in the story I will forget where it was. (hand through her tousled hair as looked towards)..Ok..I 'm back to reading and really liking the begining of this story..:)
Jan

abonilla wrote 1867 days ago

Jennifer:
I've just finished chapter 1. This is great stuff! It has a very Melissa Marr feel to it and almost a kind-of X-Men quality ;) My only suggestion would be that this seems a bit long for a first chapter. I have a feeling that the four stories are going to converge into one, but it might fare better as two separate chapters. I'm definitely going to shelf this one, just give me a couple days to clear my shelf, I hate to turn around backed books too quickly.

Good luck with this!!

-Mandy

Joanna Stephen-Ward wrote 1867 days ago

Great new cover. Powerful! Eye catching.

Joanna

Joanna Stephen-Ward wrote 1867 days ago

Hi Jennifer,

The first thing you should do is get an original cover to make your book stand out from the crowd. A lot of people have chosen the same cover as you have, and it makes yours melt into the background.

Very good premise and a powerful theme.

Good luck with this, Joanna

kyronae wrote 1867 days ago

Thank you so much, Elizabeth! I really worried about the # of characters being overwhelming or having them blur together, so it's reassuring to hear that you enjoyed it. I really appreciate you stopping by. :)

Dale C. wrote 1868 days ago

Looks like I get the first comment on this one. I've only read the first chapter so far, but the writing is very smooth. You introduce quite a crew of characters here, maybe too many. I'll reserve judgment on that until I've read the other chapters.

Nitpicks: This is clean writing. There may be a few glitches I didn't pick up on, but the only thing that threw me out of the story even a little was:

Paragraph beginning "Red shook her hand..." (8th paragraph from the bottom) For some reason the end of the first sentence jarred me out of the story slightly. "...why he had been summoned over." It's grammatically correct, but somehow it just didn't feel quite right. It could just be me.

Other than that the first chapter was a smooth ride. I'll stop back by in the morning to read the rest.

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