Tuesday, May 7, 2013

First Kiss #34

TITLE: Yakimali's Gift
GENRE: YA Historical

Setting: 1775 Mexico, colonization expedition to CA. After weeks of sparring and mixed emotions, Miguel and Fernanda declare their love for each other.

You are—“ he seemed to search for the words “—so beautiful, so in love with life, so passionate about your beliefs, and you fight for those beliefs.” He held her face between his hands. His voice softened. “I love you, Fernanda.” He slid his hand down, cupped her chin, and traced her lips with his thumb. “I love you as much as anyone can possibly love.”

His hands slipped to her arms, and he gently pulled her close. “ Te amo,” he murmured. Then he kissed her softly on the lips.

For that moment, all that existed for Fernanda was the touch of Miguel’s lips on hers. Sensations she’d never felt before rushed through her body. Nerves she never knew existed tingled. She pressed against him, wanting to feel his body close…closer. Pleasure rushed from her head to the very tips of her toes, and she returned his kiss. He caressed the back of her neck. His other hand slid down her back, and he pulled her tighter against his broad chest, his pounding heart, his heat that inflamed her own body. Mi amor, she thought. My love!

Miguel slowly pulled back and their lips parted. As if emerging from a world where nothing existed except Miguel’s kiss, his body, Fernanda became aware of her surroundings—the whistle of a bird, the roughness of the rock she sat on, the cool air and faint rays of sun. Did her face have the same look of joy she saw on Miguel’s? Surely it must. Her head felt as if it might float away. In her mind, she twirled and leaped.


  1. I really like this! I want to read it now. :)

  2. Really like this! I don't know if i have any constructive criticism. I didn't realize she was sitting until the end, but i'm sure that's because of the word limitation and being dropped in the middle of things.

    love this line: he pulled her tighter against his broad chest, his pounding heart, his heat that inflamed her own body

  3. Very nice description, and the tone is appropriate for a historical novel. I could definitely feel what was going on with Fernanda.

    A few nits:
    - Miguel saying "te amo" in the second paragraph made me wonder what language he was speaking in the first. I assume even though the novel is in English, in reality they are speaking Spanish. To me, throwing in a line of Spanish breaks the illusion. (Same with mi amor / my love, later.)
    - "Sensations she'd never felt before" is a little vague. You might look for a way to describe the sensation in more concrete terms.
    - In the last paragraph, I think you could cut the phrase, "As if emerging from a world where nothing existed except Miguel's kiss, his body." It repeats what you've already said in the previous paragraph. It would be enough here just to show Fernanda gradually becoming aware of her surroundings, which you have done very nicely.

    Nice job!

  4. Nicely done. The voice fits the piece and time period. The little flashes of Spanish aren't problematic for me as a whole, but with these two so close to each other, it makes me wonder how many times this occurs in the book. Too much can be distracting, but a sprinkling is enough to remind you the culture. My only other nitpick is at the end where she leans into him to get closer, but she's sitting on the rock. Does she feel this? What about when they break apart, is she still leaning (in which case the rock has got to be digging into her hip) or does she sit back?

    Good job.

  5. I liked this a lot. If you're looking to push yourself, I'd suggest digging a little deeper beyond the "sensations I'd never felt before" and nerves tingling. They certainly work, but maybe try out some phrasing that isn't so common that might show those same sensations. Same with tracing lips with the thumb; you could build on that with a metaphor or tie her feelings from that physical reaction to something deeper that she feels.

    You have a great set up, and I love that you have a YA set in an uncommon historical setting!

  6. Other than agreeing with Rebecca M. on wondering why the change in language (as I, too, assumed they were speaking Spanish to begin with), I'd say this is well written. The sensation of the kiss used some terms I have read before, but they were written in such a way so as not to seem trite. Overall, nice :)

  7. I think you could snip the language in one spot. At the very beginning you say "he seemed to search for the words". Couldn't you just say "he searched for the words"?

    I really liked it, though.

  8. This is nicely done. I agree with the others on the vagueness of "Sensations she'd never felt before".

    Would be possible to get a glimpse of Fernanda's thoughts on his declaration of love? Is she surprised? Glad to finally hear the words? Is this a problem?