An excellent-looking new New Zealand book, a couple of crazy popular series, and the Norse gods’ take on America.
Dear Vincent, Mandy Hager (June/July) – the new novel by the New Zealand author of the Blood of the Lamb trilogy. “17 year old Tara McClusky’s life is hard. She shares the care of her paralysed father with her domineering, difficult mother, forced to cut down on her hours at school to help support the family with a part-time rest home job. She’s very much alone, still grieving the loss of her older sister Van, who died five years before. Her only source of consolation is her obsession with art and painting in particular. Most especially she is enamoured with Vincent Van Gogh: she has read all his letters and finds many parallels between the tragic story of his life and her own. Luckily she meets the intelligent, kindly Professor Max Stockhamer (a Jewish refugee and philosopher) and his grandson Johannes, and their support is crucial to her ability to survive this turbulent time.” (goodreads.com)
Crushed, Sara Shepard (June/July) – the 13th (13!) in the Pretty Little Liars series. “It’s springtime in suburban Rosewood, which means iced soy lattes, fresh manicures in shimmering pastels—and prom. But while everyone else is flipping through the racks at Saks in search of the perfect dress, Hanna, Spencer, Emily, and Aria are on a different kind of hunt: They’re looking for A… Hanna puts her campaign for prom queen on the back burner to volunteer at the burn clinic, where one of A’s victims is recovering. Emily digs into Ali’s past at the mental hospital with some very crazy consequences. Spencer contacts a private eye to help her stalk her stalker. But when their sessions get a little too private, they may forget to keep their eyes on A… And Aria’s worried that A is even closer than she thought. When her dark secret from Iceland finally comes to light, she discovers that maybe, just maybe, the one person she’s been trying to hide the truth from has known all along. The liars are finally taking the fight to A. But no matter what they do, A’s always one step ahead, ready to crush the girls completely.” (goodreads.com)
Black Friday, Robert Muchamore (September) – the 3rd in the Aramov subseries of the über popular CHERUB phenomenon. “The Aramov Clan has splintered into two rival factions and Ryan is joined by more CHERUB agents as his three year mission enters its final phase. Ryan is about to board a plane, knowing that the next twenty-four hours will change everything. His mission is to stop the biggest terrorist attack America’s ever seen. Ryan works for CHERUB, a secret organisation with one key advantage: even a trained terrorist won’t suspect that a teenager is spying on them. For official purposes, these children do not exist.” (goodreads.com)
The Lost Sun, Tessa Gratton (July) – the first in an interesting-sounding new series set in an alternate United States founded by Norse Gods. “Seventeen-year-old Soren Bearskin is trying to escape the past. His father, a famed warrior, lost himself to the battle-frenzy and killed thirteen innocent people. Soren cannot deny that berserking is in his blood – the fevers, insomnia, and occasional feelings of uncontrollable rage haunt him. So he tries to remain calm and detached from everyone at Sanctus Sigurd’s Academy. But that’s hard to do when a popular, beautiful girl like Astrid Glyn tells Soren she dreams of him. That’s not all Astrid dreams of – the daughter of a renowned prophetess, Astrid is coming into her own inherited abilities. When Baldur, son of Odin and one of the most popular gods in the country, goes missing, Astrid sees where he is and convinces Soren to join her on a road trip that will take them to find not only a lost god, but also who they are beyond the legacy of their parents and everything they’ve been told they have to be.” (goodreads.com)
Fat Angie, e. E. Charlton-Trujillo (263 pages) – Angie is broken — by her can’t-be-bothered mother, by her high-school tormenters, and by being the only one who thinks her varsity-athlete-turned-war-hero sister is still alive. Hiding under a mountain of junk food hasn’t kept the pain (or the shouts of “crazy mad cow!”) away. Having failed to kill herself — in front of a gym full of kids — she’s back at high school just trying to make it through each day. That is, until the arrival of KC Romance, the kind of girl who doesn’t exist in Dryfalls, Ohio. But can the daring new girl really change anything?
First lines: “This was the beginning. Angie bit the end of her thumbnail awaiting the result. She had – unwittingly – found a rival.”
Revenge of the girl with the great personality, Elizabeth Eulberg (261 pages) – Everybody loves Lexi. She’s popular, smart, funny…but she’s never been one of those girls, the pretty ones who get all the attention from guys. And on top of that, her seven-year-old sister, Mackenzie, is a terror in a tiara, and part of a pageant scene where she gets praised for her beauty (with the help of fake hair and tons of makeup). Lexi’s sick of it. She’s sick of being the girl who hears about kisses instead of getting them, of being ignored by her longtime crush, of being taken for granted by her pageant-obsessed mom and she’s sick of having all her family’s money wasted on a phony pursuit of perfection. The time has come for Lexi to step out from the sidelines. Girls without great personalities aren’t going to know what hit them. Because Lexi’s going to play the beauty game – and she’s in it to win it.
First line: “Applying butt glue to my sister’s backside is, without question, not the first way I’d choose to spend a weekend.”
Inheritance, Lisa Forrest (376 pages) – Tallulah has always know she was different. She can communicate without speaking, a secret she shares only with her childhood nanny, Irena, who warns Tallulah that gifts like hers are not always welcome. When Tallulah begins training at the prestigious Cirque d’Avenir school, it soon becomes clear the troupe is not all that it seems. As Tallulah is drawn deeper into a world of dark, ancient powers and centuries-old greed, she must call on the skills Irena taught her – and on the protection of the mysterious cuff Irena gave her for safekeeping.
First line: “Tallulah Thomson could feel an insistent press on her shoulder but she was too exhausted to move; the muggy warmth that hovered on the edge of her consciousness promised no relief from the battle she’d been caught up in.”
Diva, Jillian Larkin, (280 pages) – This is the third in the Flappers series which finds the girls spending the last glorious days of summer sunbathing with socialites at Forrest Hamilton’s swanky villa. But Gloria Carmody is hiding an oh-so-scandalous secret while Clara Knowles is left heartbroken and depressed after Marcus leaves her for another girl. Lorraine Dyer thinks it will be a loveless marriage however and decides to save Marcus from it.
First lines: “All his life, Jerome had dreamed of crowds screaming his name. But this wasn’t what he’d had in mind.”
Nobody’s secret, Michaela MacColl (240 pages) – It’s 1846, and for fifteen-year-old Emily Dickenson, every day follows the same pattern: chores, chores, and more chores. A flirtation with mysterious, handsome young man therefore is a welcome distraction. Even if he playfully won’t tell her his name. That is, until he turns up dead in her family’s pond. Stricken with guilt, Emily sets out to discover who this enigmatic stranger was before he’s condemned to be buried in an anonymous grave. Her investigation takes her deep into town secrets, blossoming romance, and deadly danger.
First lines: “Emily lay perfectly still, hidden in the tall grass, her eyes closed tight. A chain of wildflowers lay wilted around her neck. But no matter how quiet she was, the bee would not land on her nose.”
The lost girl, Sangu Mandanna (390 pages) – Fifteen-year-old Eva is the ultimate insurance policy: she’s an echo, created by the “Weavers” to be an exact replica of her original, an Indian girl named Amarra. Eva’s entire life has been dedicated to studying Amarra’s life; should Amarra die, Eva will replace her, with only Amarra’s family the wiser. Shortly after Eva and Amarra turn 16, Eva is ripped from everything and everyone she holds dear to move from England to India, where echoes are illegal (meaning her death if she is found out), to fulfill her purpose.
First lines: “I remember being in town with Mina Ma. I must have been about ten. She wanted to buy a lottery ticket and I stood outside the newsagent’s and looked in the window of the toyshop next door.”
The originals, Cat Patrick (293 pages) – Lizzie is a clone, one of three 16-year-old “sisters,” raised under the strict supervision of their scientist mother. Everyone outside the house thinks Lizzie, Ella, and Betsey are the same person, Elizabeth Best, since their mother has the girls living in shifts but the girls are growing increasingly resistant to this arrangement, especially after Lizzie and Ella fall for two different boys at school. While the cloning isn’t really explored, it serves as a tool to explore themes of identity, sisterhood, and family.
First lines: “My part is first half. I go to student government, chemistry, trigonometry, psychology, and history at school, then do the rest of the day at home.”
This is what happy looks like, Jennifer E. Smith (404 pages) – Perfect strangers Graham Larkin and Ellie O’Neill meet online when Graham accidentally sends Ellie an e-mail about his pet pig, Wilbur. The two 17-year-olds strike up an e-mail relationship from opposite sides of the country and don’t even know each other’s first names. What’s more, Ellie doesn’t know Graham is a famous actor, and Graham doesn’t know about the big secret in Ellie’s family tree. When the relationship goes from online to in-person, they find out whether their relationship can be the real thing.
First lines: “Hey, we’re running pretty behind here. Any chance you could walk Wilbur for me tonight?”
Mind Games, Kiersten White (241 pages) – from the same author who brought you the Paranormalcy trilogy comes a new novel about two sisters, bound by impossible choices but who are determined to protect each other no matter the cost. Seventeen-year-old Fia and her sister, Annie, are trapped in a school that uses young female psychics and mind readers as tools for corporate espionage – and if Fia doesn’t play by the rules of their deadly game, Annie will be killed.
First lines: “My dress is black and itchy and I hate it. I want to peel it off and I want to kick Aunt Ellen for making me wear it.”
The Lucy variations, Sara Zarr (304 pages) – Sixteen-year-old San Franciscan Lucy Beck-Moreau once had a promising future as a concert pianist. Her chance at a career has passed, and she decides to help her ten-year-old piano prodigy brother, Gus, map out his own future, even as she explores why she enjoyed piano in the first place.
First lines: “Try harder, Lucy. Lucy stared down at Madame Temnikova’s face. Which seemed incredibly gray. Try. Harder. Lucy.”
New novels from some popular authors (a couple of them a while in the making!), and a new series of Victorian intrigue.
More than this, Patrick Ness (September) – “A boy named Seth drowns, desperate and alone in his final moments, losing his life as the pounding sea claims him. But then he wakes. He is naked, thirsty, starving. But alive. How is that possible? He remembers dying, his bones breaking, his skull dashed upon the rocks. So how is he here? And where is this place? It looks like the suburban English town where he lived as a child, before an unthinkable tragedy happened and his family moved to America. But the neighborhood around his old house is overgrown, covered in dust, and completely abandoned. What’s going on? And why is it that whenever he closes his eyes, he falls prey to vivid, agonizing memories that seem more real than the world around him? Seth begins a search for answers, hoping that he might not be alone, that this might not be the hell he fears it to be, that there might be more than just this…” (goodreads.com)
The clockwork scarab, Colleen Gleason (September) – “Two young women of similar age and standing have disappeared: one found dead and the other still missing. The only clue to connect them is a small Egyptian clockwork scarab. Only Miss Stoker and Miss Holmes are well-positioned enough – similar in age and stature as they are to the victims – to investigate. An unlikely pair, the fierce Evaline Stoker and logical Mina Holmes must follow in the footsteps of their infamous families – Miss Holmes has inherited her Uncle Sherlock’s keen investigative skills, while Miss Stoker has accepted her family calling as a hunter of the undead. The partners must find a way to work together, while navigating the advances of a strange yet handsome American, a clever Scotland Yard investigator, and a cunning thief, to solve the mystery of the clockwork scarabs.” (goodreads.com) In case you missed it, the two main characters are the niece of Sherlock Holmes and the half-sister of Bram Stoker (author of Dracula). They’d be an awesome detective duo, we think. The first in a new series.
Armageddon, James Patterson (Daniel X series - October) – “In the fifth installment of James Patterson’s action-packed Daniel X series, Daniel must now face an alien whose origins appear nearer to the depths of Hell than the outer reaches of the galaxy. Number Two is an unstoppable criminal that’s slowly been amassing an underground army of disgusting, disgruntled, and dangerous aliens to help him enslave Earth’s population. And it’s all in preparation for the arrival of Number One, the most powerful alien in the universe and Daniel’s arch-nemesis. To Daniel’s horror, thousands of humans defect to the alien’s side, making the odds of success that much more impossible. But for the first time in his life, Daniel isn’t alone in his fight. He’s connected with several military and intelligence groups–including the daughter of a prominent FBI agent – and is prepared to lead the ultimate showdown against the evil that has plagued planet Earth for so long. Readers, beware – and be prepared for a truly epic battle that evokes the ancient prophecies of Armageddon!” (goodreads.com)
Picture me gone, Meg Rosoff (September) – we’ve been waiting ages for the new book from the bestselling author of How I Live Now. “Mila is on a roadtrip across the USA with her father. They are looking for his best friend but Mila discovers a more important truth. Sometimes the act of searching reveals more than the final discovery can. Adults do not have all the answers. It all depends what questions you ask. A brilliantly atmospheric exploration of someone on the brink of adulthood…” (amazon.co.uk)
What’s so special about a new book you ask? Well, do you remember our inaugural post – graphic novels that aren’t about superheroes? Well we certainly do. Which is why we were so excited to discover this new book: Faith Erin Hicks’ The Adventures of Superhero Girl. This book hilariously demonstrates some of the tropes associated with superheroes. Tropes are devices and conventions that a writer can reasonably rely on as being present in the audience members’ minds and expectations. They’re kind of like signposts for a genre. So for superhero characters they’re things like: they must have a tragic past inspiring their life of crimefighting, or they must have an arch-nemesis. Superhero Girl struggles with these things, as well as less intense superhero problems like forgetting to take her mask off. Aaaaand some more everyday relatable problems like forgetting to update her mother on her life and accidentally shrinking her cape in the wash. That happens to us all the time.
Superhero Girl is the funniest, most down-to-earth, almost ordinary superhero we’ve ever seen. Which is why this gem of a book gets a whole post to itself. It’s the lightheartedness that we love about this comic, which we’ve tried to capture in our teaser panels below…
All images used with permission from Faith Erin Hicks
Like what you see? Here in the library we have another graphic novel of hers: Friends with boys which you can also find online here. For more Faith Erin Hicks, check our her tumblr, twitter or website.
The magical edition:
Rise of the fallen, Teagan Chilcott (202 pages) – Appearing as students at a local Brisbane high school, Emilie and Cael are centuries-old elementals on the run. Their inseparable bond starts to fray when Soul, an irresistible demon, comes on the scene and Emilie follows him into the savage world where she and Cael were once kept captive.
First lines: “There was nothing but silence as I lay back on the soft, green grass of the oval. It was a clear day; the clouds that usually speckled the bright sky were missing.”
Invisibility, Andrea Cremer and David Levithan (358 pages) – Stephen has been invisible for practically his whole life — because of a curse his grandfather, a powerful cursecaster, bestowed on Stephen’s mother before Stephen was born. So when Elizabeth moves to Stephen’s NYC apartment building from Minnesota, no one is more surprised than he is that she can see him. A budding romance ensues, and when Stephen confides in Elizabeth about his predicament, the two of them decide to dive headfirst into the secret world of cursecasters and spellseekers to figure out a way to break the curse.
First lines: “I was born invisible. I have no idea how this worked. Did my mother go to a hospital, expecting me to be just another normal, visible baby?”
Spellcaster, Claudia Gray (389 pages) – Descended from witches, high school senior Nadia can tell as soon as her family moves to Captive’s Sound that the town is under a dark and powerful spell. A sickness is infecting everyone and everything in the town, especially Mateo, the teenage local whose cursed dreams predict the future. Despite the forces pulling them apart, Nadia and Mateo must work together to break the chains of his curse, and to prevent a coming disaster that threatens the entire town.
First lines: “Before anything else, Nadia felt the chill. She wasn’t sure why. Her father already had the car’s heat on because of the awful weather.”
Pantomime, Laura Lam (390 pages) – R. H. Ragona’s Circus of Magic is the greatest circus of Ellada. It’s a place where anything seems possible, where if you close your eyes you can believe that the magic and knowledge of the vanished Chimaera is still there. It’s a place where anyone can hide. Gene, the daughter of a noble family, runs away from the decadence of court to this circus of magic, where she meets runaway Micah, a runaway who has quickly become the circus’s rising star. But Gene and Micah have balancing acts of their own to perform, and a secret in their blood that could unlock the mysteries of Ellada.
First lines: “”Well, boy,” the ringmaster said. “What can you do?” I swallowed. The clown who had found me eavesdropping tightened his grip on my shirt.”
Scarlet in the snow, Sophie Masson (318 pages) – When Natasha is forced to take shelter from a sudden, terrible blizzard, she is lucky to see a mansion looming out of the snow. Inside, it is beautiful despite the empty frames instead of paintings that hang on the walls. In the garden, she finds one perfect red rose about to bloom, a vivid splash of scarlet against the snow. Dreamily she reaches out a hand, only to have a terrifying, gigantic creature who looks like a cross between a bear and a man and demand vengeance on her for taking his rose. Sound familiar? There’s plenty of twists and intrigue to make this fairy tale fresh. Natasha will have a long journey, and many ordeals, ahead of her before there can be a happy ending.
First lines: “‘Ah, there you are! I might have known I’d find you up here, scribbling like some old clerk. Look at you – you’ve got ink all over your fingers! No, stop, don’t do that, Natasha, you’ll get it on your nose too!’”
Fathomless, Jackson Pearce (291 pages) – Celia Reynolds is the youngest in a set of triplets and the one with the least valuable power. Anne can see the future, and Jane can see the present, but all Celia can see is the past. And the past seems so insignificant until Celia meets Lo who is fighting to remember her past. Once a human, she is now almost entirely a creature of the sea – a nymph, an ocean girl, a mermaid – all terms too pretty for the soulless monster she knows she’s becoming. There’s only one way for Lo to earn back her humanity. She must persuade a mortal to love her … and steal his soul.
First lines: “There are lights at the surface. Lights so unlike the sun, that can’t reach down into the depths of the ocean. Lights we can see only when we look outside the water.”
Between the lives, Jessica Shirvington (330 pages) – For as long as she can remember, every 24 hours Sabine ’shifts’, living each day twice. She has one life in Wellesley, Massachusetts (where she is rich, popular and has the charmed future) and a completely different life in Roxbury, Boston (where she is poor, a delinquent and with a hopeless future). All Sabine has ever wanted is the chance to live one life. When it seems this might finally be possible, Sabine begins a series of dangerous experiments to achieve her goal. But is she willing to risk everything to get it?
First lines: “I am a liar. Not compulsive. Simply required. I am two people. Neither better than the other, no superpowers, no mystical destinies, no two-places-in-one-time mechanism – but two people.”
A necklace of souls, R L Stedman (366 pages) – In a hidden kingdom a mysterious Guardian protects Dana’s people with the help of a magical necklace. But evil forces are also seeking the power of the necklace, and as the Guardian grows weaker these forces threaten to destroy the kingdom. With the help of her best friend, Will, and the enigmatic N’tombe, Dana, the rightful heir, must claim the power of the necklace and save her people. But the necklace takes a terrible toll on whoever wears it – a toll that Dana may not be prepared to face.
First lines: “A true dream is when the events I see in my sleep have, or will happen. It’s a talent that runs in my family. I was thirteen when I had my first true dream. This was my dream.”
Heaps and heaps, including:
These are all new to Wellington City Libraries. Authors include Jaclyn Moriarty (of Feeling Sorry for Celia fame – although sadly no Feeling Sorry for Celia yet), Meg Cabot, John Marsden and many more!
To read Bolinda eBook titles on a mobile device, just download the BorrowBox app:
On desktop computers, you can download titles from our Bolinda website straight to Adobe Digital Editions (like for Overdrive eBooks).
Do check our eBooks out! Literally!
Allegiant, Veronica Roth (October) – we’ve ordered the final in the Divergent trilogy, so now you can too! Get in quick and you won’t have to wait too long in the reserve queue. But what will happen? Jolly good question. We don’t know! But, we do now have a book cover at least.
Also, in the mean time, here’s a link to a still from the Divergent movie.
There are other interesting titles appearing soon in the mean time, like a couple of Victorian stories:
Legacy of the Clockwork Key, Kristin Bailey (June). “When a fire consumes Meg’s home, killing her parents and destroying both her fortune and her future, all she has left is the tarnished pocket watch she rescued from the ashes. But this is no ordinary timepiece. The clock turns out to be a mechanical key – a key that only Meg can use – that unlocks a series of deadly secrets and intricate clues that Meg is compelled to follow. Meg has uncovered evidence of an elite secret society and a dangerous invention that some will stop at nothing to protect – and that Meg alone can destroy. Together with the handsome stable hand she barely knows but hopes she can trust, Meg is swept into a hidden world of deception, betrayal, and revenge. The clockwork key has unlocked her destiny in this captivating start to a trilogy.” (goodreads.com)
The Incredible Charlotte Sycamore, Kate Maddison (June) – don’t mind the interesting font on the cover. “”I’m sixteen, live in Buckingham Palace, my father is the Royal Surgeon to Queen Victoria, and I have a price on my head. I’m wanted for high treason – stealing medicine and knowledge from the rich to treat the poor. They call me the Robin Hood Surgeon and believe I’m a man, but I can’t confess, for not only would they send me to the gallows, but my unsuspecting father as well. I’m grateful to my secret band of friends for helping me maneuver through London as we battle the deadly mechanical dogs, but it’s becoming more difficult because my feelings are so torn between Peter and Benjamin.” (author’s website)
Plus one other for good measure:
The Moon and More, Sarah Dessen (June/July) – it’s been ages (since 2011), but Sarah Dessen fans don’t have long to wait for her next book! “Luke is the perfect boyfriend: handsome, kind, fun. He and Emaline have been together all through high school in Colby, the beach town where they both grew up. But now, in the summer before college, Emaline wonders if perfect is good enough. Enter Theo, a super-ambitious outsider, a New Yorker assisting on a documentary film about a reclusive local artist. Theo’s sophisticated, exciting, and, best of all, he thinks Emaline is much too smart for Colby. Emaline’s mostly-absentee father, too, thinks Emaline should have a bigger life, and he’s convinced that an Ivy League education is the only route to realizing her potential. Emaline is attracted to the bright future that Theo and her father promise. But she also clings to the deep roots of her loving mother, stepfather, and sisters. Can she ignore the pull of the happily familiar world of Colby? Emaline wants the moon and more, but how can she balance where she comes from with where she’s going?” (goodreads.com)
Mortal Fire, Elizabeth Knox (June) – the new fantasy novel from one of New Zealand’s premier writers. “When sixteen-year-old Canny of the Pacific island, Southland, sets out on a trip with her stepbrother and his girlfriend, she finds herself drawn into enchanting Zarene Valley where the mysterious but dark seventeen-year-old Ghislain helps her to figure out her origins.” (Children’s Bookshop, Kilbirnie) Margo Lanagan said, “It has brains; it has heart; it has people to fear and to fall in low with; and it all takes place in a totally beguiling world full of natural beauties, glittering puzzles and earthy problems.”
Chantress, Amy Butler Greenfield (June) – “This historical fantasy imagines an alternate 17th-century England where the tyrannical Lord Protector has hunted down anyone with magical power. The last ‘Chantress,’ 15-year-old Lucy, lives in exile on a deserted island, knowing only that she should never sing and tap her dangerous latent talent.” (goodreads.com) Described as “atmospheric and lyrical, dangerous and romantic”.
The Rules for Disappearing, Ashley Elston (June/July) – “She’s been six different people in six different places: Madeline in Ohio, Isabelle in Missouri, Olivia in Kentucky… But now that she’s been transplanted to rural Louisiana, she has decided that this fake identity will be her last. Witness Protection has taken nearly everything from her. But for now, they’ve given her a new name, Megan Rose Jones, and a horrible hair color. For the past eight months, Meg has begged her father to answer one question: What on earth did he do – or see – that landed them in this god-awful mess? Meg has just about had it with all the Suits’ rules – and her dad’s silence. If he won’t help, it’s time she got some answers for herself. But Meg isn’t counting on Ethan Landry, an adorable Louisiana farm boy who’s too smart for his own good. He knows Meg is hiding something big. And it just might get both of them killed. As they embark on a perilous journey to free her family once and for all, Meg discovers that there’s only one rule that really matters – survival” (goodreads.com)
The lads edition:
Strike three, you’re dead, Josh Berk (250 pages) – There are red herrings galore in this baseball-filled middle-grade murder mystery. Lenny Norbeck and his friends, Mike and Other Mike, may be dorks, but they don’t back away from the curveballs their first big case throws at them.
First lines: “No one gets killed in the suburbs. I say this out loud, more to myself than anyone else. I keep saying it. Over and over, like the words might form a shield to protect me.”
Heroic, Phil Earle (290 pages) – This book was inspired by S. E. Hinton’s The Outsiders which is one of my all time favourite’s and it’s one of the few YA books I’ve seen about soldiers who come home from war. Brothers Jammy and Sonny McGann have always been very different; one is calm where the other is angry, one is a planner while the other is impulsive. But when Jammy returns from Afghanistan a very different man to the one who left, it is up to Sonny to save the brother who always put him first. It promises to be “a devastating novel about brotherhood and sacrifice” (back cover).
First lines: “Talk is cheap, which explains a lot. Explains why every day of my life has been a shouting match, why, even with the phone held away from my ear, all I could hear was banter. White noise.”
When love comes to town, Tom Lennon (288 pages) – Neil’s the perfect Irish guy: he’s great on the rugby field, got decent grades, and snogged girls in the in-crowd. He’s also got a secret that he can’t reveal to just anyone: he’s gay. Now on the verge of turning eighteen, he’s determined to find his real self and friends to support him. All he needs is the courage to go out at night in Dublin, to finally talk to that guy Ian, to tell – and live – the truth. It was written in the 1990s though so don’t be thrown by the references to a ‘walkman’ – it’s brilliant.
First line: “Neil rested his elbows on the window ledge, sank his chin into his hands, and stared out across the neighborhood gardens.”
Crap Kingdom, D. C. Pierson, (360 pages) – Tenth-grader Tom Parking’s dream of being swept away to a fantasy land where he becomes a hero nearly comes true when he finds himself the Chosen One of a nameless world, the most annoying, least “cool” place in the universe. The kingdom is mostly made of garbage from Earth. The king hates Tom and the princess likes to wear fake mustaches. Being Chosen One seems to consist mainly of cleaning out rats’ noses at the Royal Rat-Snottery so Tom turns the job down. But when Tom is replaced by his best friend Kyle, who’s always been cooler, more athletic, and better with girls, Tom’s on a hilarious quest to get Crap Kingdom back at any cost.
First line: “The problem was, his life wasn’t bad enough.”
Life after theft, Aprilynne Pike (345 pages) – The tagline reads “Being dead is just the beginning…” for what you may ask? For meangirl Kimberlee, it’s just the beginning of her journey to make amends for her kleptomaniac ways when she was living. There’s a cute boy, Jeff, to help her (even though he doesn’t really want to at the start) and it’s from his perspective that this story is told (which is why it’s included in the lads edition). Jeff’s the only one who can see Kimberlee so it’s up to him to help her ‘move on.’
First lines: “I hate this school. I tugged at the lame plaid tie that was about three millimeters away from suffocating me and revised. I hate this tie.”
Heroes, Ireland, romance, baseball, ghosts and soldiers! Hopefully there’s something in there for everyone… Enjoy!