aka YA Literature

Friday, August 28, 2009

I Hate You, Kathleen Duey

I don't know how many other people have been dying for the sequel to Skin Hunger, but it's been killing me since 2007! I finally got and finished Sacred Scars, and I must say that I have no idea when the (supposedly) last book in the trilogy is coming out, but it can't be soon enough. And it better not take two more years! I understand it takes a while to write books, especially great books like these, but why put us through the torture? I'd have preferred to wait until they could be published closer together so as not to kill me with the suspense and wondering.

Sacred Scars was quite a bit longer than Skin Hunger, and although it was still good, it dragged in the middle for me. Hahp seems to be progressing quite well through the magic lessons at the wizard academy and begins to take more and more risks to help the others in his class who are still alive. You come to realize that Gerrard knows a lot more about the wizards and magic than any other average person would know. (If any of you have read this, PLEASE email me about this because I want to discuss it so badly and get your ideas on it.) Sadima continues to be determined to escape Somiss, while she slowly realizes that Franklin will never leave him. The stories overlap more and more, as they did in Skin Hunger, but the ending of this book was even more unsatisfying than SK was. I hope it's not giving too much away to say that pretty much nothing is resolved or revealed by the end. It felt like the middle of a book instead of single book with its own story.

In addition to the suspense of the plot lines and wondering how Sadima's story lead to Hahp's and how Hahp's will end, I am intrigued by the issues of how one loses and maintains one's humanity. And can you give up part of it? If so, how much? I would like to discuss this with someone who's read it because there are a few things I still don't understand about Somiss (like is he just psycho or sadistic, and if so why?). Also I'm wondering about his powers.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Andromeda Klein

I'm a big fan of Frank Portman's King Dork. It's not the kind of book that I can recommend to just anyone, but it's very exciting when I find the right student who will appreciate it. So I'm hoping that I will also like Andromeda Klein. I'm waiting to get it from the public library. I can't believe I'm #2 on the wait list! Who got on the list before me, and how?

Anyway, here is a song Portman wrote about the title character from Entertainment Weekly.

Monday, August 17, 2009

My New Favorite Reading Material

I know that a lot of girls and women are reluctant to consider themselves "feminists," but I am not one of them. I am a feminist. This is just one reason why I am super excited that Bitch Magazine is adding a new Page Turner book blog called "YA Lit Bitch" that will include"feature interviews with many YA authors about their work as well as feminism, gender, race, class, sexual orientation, and other issues." Their inaugural interview is with Sara Zarr, whom I love and respect a lot.

One of the questions they asked Sara was, "Are you a feminist?" I'm really interested in this question, and I hope they ask every writer they interview. I like to know whether people (both men and women) consider themselves a feminist and why. I would have guessed Sara would say she does consider herself a feminist, but while she didn't reject the idea, she doesn't really apply that term to herself.

Friday, August 14, 2009


Maybe this is old news, but I just discovered it:

Monday, August 3, 2009

YA News From Poland

So I've been in Poland for the last month. Last year, I asked all the students if they'd read Twilight, and no one had even heard of it. This year, it seems to be enjoying the same popularity and craze that it does here in the US. I gave away some ARCs I had, and the students seemed pretty excited about them. This year, my mission was to spread the word about Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, especially once I discovered that it's already been translated into Polish and is already in paperback there. I'm told the title translates to something like "Death Olympics."

In Krakow, I went to this bookstore in the center of the Old Town:

And in addition to the many YA novels I saw there (including Sarah Dessen's Lock & Key with the same pink cover as the US edition), I saw this:

I was impressed they had Meg Cabot there. They also had this Cassandra Clare book: