A couple of angels, fairies (perhaps!), a shade, a troubled teen, and twins.
Some Kind of Fairy Tale, Graham Joyce (414 pages) – One day (Christmas, to be exact), Peter gets a phone call from his parents to say that his sister, Tara, has arrived home. Tara has been gone for twenty years, and she’s back with incredible tales of adventure. But Tara looks the same as she did when she disappeared, and Peter wonders if there’s something a bit different about her (and do the woods around their parents’ home have something to do with it?).
First sentence: In the deepest heart of England there is a place where everything is at fault.
Fury, Rebecca Lim (368 pages) – the fourth book in the Mercy series. “Heartbreak. Vengeance. Fury. Mercy is an exiled angel cast down to earth and forced to live out thousands of different lives for her own protection. Betrayed by her eternal love, Luc, Mercy burns with fury. The time of reckoning is here and now she must wage open war with Luc and his demons. Ryan’s love for Mercy is more powerful than ever, but loving an angel is mortally dangerous. As their two worlds collide, Mercy approaches her ultimate breathtaking choice.” (catalogue)
First sentence: Picture, if you can, the ancient city of Milan in the dead of night, lashed by an unimaginable storm.
Shift, Jeri Smith-Ready (367 pages) – this is the second in the Shade trilogy. “Aura’s life is anything but easy. Her boyfriend, Logan, died, and his slides between ghost and shade have left her reeling. Aura knows he needs her now more than ever. She loves Logan, but she can’t deny her connection with the totally supportive, totally gorgeous Zachary. And she’s not sure that she wants to. Logan and Zachary will fight to be the one by her side, but Aura needs them both to uncover the mystery of her past – the mystery of the Shift. As Aura’s search uncovers new truths, she must decide whom to trust with her secrets… and her heart” (cover).
First sentence: I held my breath as it began, the last verse of the last song.
Happy Families, Tanita S Davis (234 pages) – Twins Ysabel and Justin have a perfect life and a happy family, and are preparing for life after school (Ysabel as an aspiring jewellery designer, Justin as a college student), when their father makes an announcement that will turn their world on its end.
First sentence: The surge of chattering, pointing, gawking people pours into the massive auditorium, and I feel a shiver crawl up my arms.
Heaven, Alexandra Adornetto (417 pages) – the conclusion to the Halo trilogy. In which Bethany and Xavier take a rather important step in their relationship – a forbidden marriage – and come up against the Sevens, who are (I think) like the angel equivalent of the SAS, and who are bent on keeping Bethany and Xavier apart. Will true love conquer?
First sentence(s): Everything began to rattle. I clutched the edge of the table and watched my engagement ring tumble onto the checkered floor of Sweethearts Cafe.
Trapped Outside a Cage, Ken Benn (237 pages, New Zealand author) – “Rochelle’s brother, Jack, is in prison for the murder of Methsy, and Rochelle is convinced he didn’t do it. But if Jack is innocent, then why has he confessed to the crime? Rochelle is about to find out that something or someone with sinister intentions is behind Jack’s actions” (summary from the publisher – thanks!).
Tuesday means trailers! The first is a good one. You will tear up! Awww. It is called Chimpanzee, and is due out next year. You can watch it after watching the Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and be all, “eh, apes aren’t all bad.”
The video for Lady Gaga’s newest single, Judas, is due out on the 5th (in the US, so the 6th here?). There is no trailer for it yet, as is so often the case, but she tweeted an image this morning. Sort of a trailer picture? Cast your eyes over it here!
Parodies/mashups of classic novels are all the rage these days, what with Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, or Sense and Sensibilities and Sea Monsters. The latest – The Meowmorphosis – is a mix of Kafka’s Metamorphosis and adorable kitties. If anything, hopefully, it will get people reading more Kafka, whose cheery books are guaranteed to lighten your day.
Sometimes people make their own trailers for things that don’t really exist. Like the romantic comedy version of The Shining, for instance. Very funny! Here’s one that is very new, and very sweet. When Kurt Met Blaine is sort of a Glee version of When Harry Met Sally (an old romantic classic). Oh also, SPOILER ALERT.
Also! Here’s the newest trailer for Immortals, which looks pretty good, right? It’s based on the classic story of Theseus, which can be obtained from your local library.
There’s a fair amount of fiction about drama, acting and theatres, which kind of makes sense, since drama is what fiction is about, in some form of another.
Trance, by Linda Gerber (277 pages) – Whenever Ashlyn falls into a trance it means that someone she knows is about to die. And there’s nothing she can do about it! Stink. But! When just as her trances begin to involve (love interest) Jake, she develops a certain understanding and control.
First lines: ‘Sounds are what I remember most. The crunch of metal on metal. Shattering glass. Screams.‘
Wereling, by Steve Feasey (276 pages) – Fourteen-year-old Trey is the last in a bloodline of werewolves, one of the ‘few things that can actually take on a vampire.’ Is he human? Or is he a werewolf? Yes to both, I guess. He is also falling for a girl who is half vampire, just to confuse matters.
First line: ‘Trey Laporte opened his eyes, wincing against the assault of the late-morning sunshine on his retinas.‘
Hunger, by Jackie Morse Kessler (177 pages) – Seventeen-year-old Lisabeth is anorexic, and has subsequently? been appointed to the role of Famine, one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. “Fast-paced, witty, and heart-breaking,” and a “fantastic and gripping read that never shies from its difficult subject matter.”
First lines: ‘Lisabeth Lewis didn’t mean to become Famine. She had a love affair with food, and she’d never liked horses (never mind the time she asked for a pony when whe was eight; that was just a girl thing).‘
Lucy Unstrung, by Carole Lazar (235 pages) – Thirteen-year-old Lucy’s mother had her when she – the mother, not Lucy! – was only fifteen. Lucy’s faith in her Grandmother, God and the Church are put to the test as her family’s income is reduced and relationships go awry. “Humour, angst, and irony.”
First line: ‘When my mom finally walks in the door at nine-fifteen, she acts like nothing’s wrong at all.‘
The Iron Daughter, by Julie Kagawa (359 pages) – Meghan is half human, and half Summer faery princess. She is a prisoner of the Winter faery queen – war is a’brewing between Summer and Winter – but she knows that the Iron fey are the real danger. Oh and she’s lost her powers and no one believes her. Yow.
First line: ‘The Iron King stood before me, magnificant in his beauty, silver hair whipping about like an unruly waterfall.‘
Freefall, by Mindi Scott (315 page) – Seth, a bass player in a teen rock band, was the last person to see his best friend, Isaac, alive. Now he has to deal with that, alcoholism, and falling in love with Rosetta, who carries her own baggage (emotional baggage, not actual bags, though sometimes she might).
First lines: ‘This was Daniel’s deal. He’d taken the order, contacted a supplier, and set it all up.‘
Quaking, by Kathryn Erskine (236 pages) – Matilda, or Matt as she prefers, is a goth girl who goes to live with a Quaker family in Pennsylvania. Her new town is deeply patriotic (about the war in the Middle East) and threats of violence against her new family mesh unhappily with her experience with bullying.
First line: ‘Families come in all varieties but with no warranties.‘
Inferno, by Robin Stevenson (229 pages) – Dante dislikes her high school. A lot! She wants to be more open about her sexuality, her only friend has moved away, and when she makes new friends she soon finds things can get worse (as hinted at by the title).
First line: ‘The sun is barely up, but the sky is already blue and cloudless.‘
The Presence : A Ghost Story, by Eve Bunting (195 pages) – Catherine’s best friend died in a car accident and Catherine is left in shock, depressed, and feeling responsible. On holiday she encounters a hot stranger who tells her he can contact the dead – is he for real or is he a figment of her imagination? Suspense!
First line: ‘The ghost stood on the church stairs, watching, waiting for Catherine.‘
Acting Up, by Ted Staunton (263 pages) – Sam is 6′4″ and slouches so as to not draw attention to himself. I’ve been there, Sam! He also lives in a ‘town full of loonies’ – another coincidence? Also he must grow up and learn what it is to be an adult. Ha.
First line: ‘“You can’t do that,” Sam Foster said, breaking through the knots of students outside the Little Hope Variety.“
Saturday Night Dirt, by Will Weaver (171 pages) – “In a small town … the much-anticipated Saturday night dirt-track race … becomes … an important life-changing event for all the participants on and off the track,” says the catalogue, mostly.
First lines: ‘“Torque wrench.” Trace Bonham, seventeen, short and stocky with unsmiling brown eyes, turned to the big toolbox on wheels.‘
The Rosie Black Chronicles Bk 1 : Genesis, by Lara Morgan (459 pages) – Five centuries from now, in the city of Newperth (Australia I’m thinking!) is divided into the ‘Centrals’, the much poorer ‘Bankers’, and the fringe-dwelling ‘Ferals’. Rosie, a Banker, finds a box that a mystery organisation will kill to have, and so she’s on the run with Pip, a Feral, and his boss.
First line: ‘Rosie shone her torch down among the scattered bricks.‘
There are only a handful of new books this week. There’s a stack of DVDs though! Quite exciting for anime fans!
Here are the books.
Here’s How I See It: Here’s How It Is, by Heather Henson (270 pages) – The remarkably named Junebug wants to be an actress, but at the age of thirteen she’s still a stagehand at her parents’ playhouse. She feels like she’s becoming the perfect stagehand – this isn’t necessarily good, as it means she feels invisible!
First line: ‘Here’s how I see it: everything is going to be okay, just like Dad said.‘
Ship Breaker : A Novel, by Paolo Bacigalupi (326 pages) – In the grim, grim future (teens like dystopian novels!) Nailer, a teenaged boy, strips beached oil tankers for their copper. He stumbles across an ‘exquisite’ clipper ship beached in a hurrican and must decide between stripping it for parts or helping out the sole survivor (she is rich and beautiful!)
First line: ‘Nailer clambered through a service duct, tugging at copper wire and yanking it free.‘
Wolves, Boys, & Other Things That Might Kill Me : A Novel, by Kristen Chandler (371 pages) – KJ lives in Montana, near Yellowstone park, where introduced wolves are splitting the community. Is she for them or against them? Do I mean the wolves, or the community? Yes to both!
First lines: ‘Wolves don’t actually howl at the moon. Mostly they howl at each other. I’m a girl, so I get that.‘
The Carrie Diaries, by Candace Bushnell (389 pages) – Carrie Bradshaw is the main character in the Sex And The City TV series and films. This book is her ‘diary’ from when she was a teen in Connecticut in the early ’80s, and before she went to New York.
First lines: ‘They say a lot can happen in a summer. Or not.‘
My Worst Best Friend, by Dyan Sheldon (303 pages) – Grace and Savanna are besties! Even soul sisters. But sometimes friendships can turn sour.
First line: ‘The way I saw it when I was in high school, even though there were still millioins of different life forms left on the planet, there were basically only two kinds of girls: Those Girls and everyone else.‘
Out of Shadows, by Jason Wallace (277 pages) – This is set in Zimbabwe, in the early ’80s, just after independence. Robert is new to the country, and finds that some of his classmates are keen for the country to return to the old, white-led past, at any cost.
First line: ‘Go ahead, shoot, I thought, because I was thirteen and deperate and anything, absolutely anything, was better than the fate to which my parents were leading me.‘
Here are the new DVDs! We have added the newest Bleach DVDs (volumes 16 to 20), and we’ve also got the first Bleach film, Bleach : Memories of Nobody. (There’s talk of a live-action Bleach film, btw.) We have added a couple of Ghost In The Shell : Stand Alone Complex DVDs to the YA collection, and the entire first series of Tsubasa in one, six-disc boxed set. Boxed sets of shounen-ai classic Gravitation and FLCL (pronounced ‘fooly-cooly’) are also in. As well as! Death Note : Relight 2 (highly recommended), the first three Bakugan DVDs, a couple more Dragonball Z movies, the 2001 OVA of Spirit of Wonder, and the complete series of the French-Japanese animation, The Mysterious Cities of Gold (which came out in 1982, when Carrie Bradshaw was in high school).
Spells, by Aprilynne Pike (425 pages) – Laurel is a faerie, placed among the humans when she was a baby. A baby faerie! She still lives in the human world (a boyfriend you see) but the faerie realm is threatened, so she’s got to do something about it.
First line: ‘Laurel stood in front of the cabin, scanning the tree line, her throat constricting in a rush of nerves.’
f2m – The Boy Within, by Hazel Edwards and Ryan Kennedy (330 pages) – Skye is in an all-girl punk band, and her world is turned upside-down when she decides to transition to male. Skye becomes Finn, and his family and friends will need to come to terms with this.
First line: ‘Tick the box. M or F.‘
Where I Belong, by Gillian Cross (340 pages) – Human smuggling, Somalia, and supermodels!
First line: ‘Spin the globe, boy,’ my father used to say.‘
Jaguar Warrior, by Sandy Fussell (212 pages) – Atl is an Aztec boy who runs from captivity (and human sacrifice I think?) towards freedom. Who can blame him!
First line: ‘“Why isn’t that boy dead yet?” When the captain shouts, even the temple walls shiver.‘
Shadow of the Dragon: Book 2 – Elspeth, by Kate O’Hearn (374 pages) – The king’s ‘First Law’ is an incredibly restrictive bunch of rules preventing girls from going anywhere near dragons (torture then execution you see) but Elspeth and her sister Kira aren’t having any of it.
First line: ‘The heavy rain that fell from the stormy skies around them did little to dampen the celebrations of the dragon riders cutting through the thick dark clouds.‘
Witchfinder : Dawn of the Demontide, by William Hussey (337 pages) – The Demontide is coming, and Jake Harker is ‘the only one who can stop it.’ Sounds pretty grim! This is the first book in a planned trilogy. There is an official website here.
First line: ‘“HELP! Someone – anyone – please, help me!”‘
Thief Eyes, by Janni Lee Simner (259 pages) – Sixteen-year-old Haley goes to Iceland with her father to try to find her mother, who disappeared there some time ago. She touches a magic coin Hallgerd (Haley’s ancestor – and a sorceress!) that curses her. Haley now needs to break the spell, and sets off with the gorgeous but dangerous Ari.
First line: ‘ Icy rain blew into my hood and dripped down my neck as I knelt on the mossy stones.‘
Bead, Boys, and Bangles, by Sophia Bennett (304 pages) – This is the second book in the Threads series, which is about four girls and ‘their amazing adventure with fashion.’ In this installment Crow’s designs may be manufactured by children in India!
First line: ‘I’ve never seen Crow look so scared. And this time she’s got a point.‘
First line: ‘They say home is where the heart is. I believed that, once.‘
Borderline, by Allan Stratton (298 pages) – Sami is the only Muslim at his private school. When is father is implicated in a terrorist plot, Sami’s ‘must fight to keep his world from unraveling.’ A thriller!
First line: ‘I’m next door in Andy’s driveway, shooting hoops with him and Marty.‘
Alchemy and Meggy Swann, by Karen Cushman (167 pages) – Meggy is sent from her country village to Elizabethan-era London. From a dire beginning she works her way to improve her lot in the same way that her father, an achemist, attempts to turn base metal into gold.
First line: ‘“Ye toads and vipers,” the girl said, as her granny often had, “ye toads and vipers,” and she snuffled a great snuffle that echoed in the empty room.‘
Burned : A House of Night Novel, by P. C. and Kristin Cast (323 pages) – Book seven in the series, and one of the Most Wanted books this month. Having not read this I do not know what is going on. High Priestesses! Neferet! Bringing back Zoey!
First line: ‘Kalona lifted his hands. He didn’t hesitate.‘
Sources of Light, by Margaret McMullan (233 pages) – Mississippi, 1962, and fourteen-year-old Sam ‘learns to use her camera to look for the shades of gray’ in a black and white world.
First line: ‘The year after my father died, my mother took a job teaching at a small college in Jackson, Mississippi.‘
Spirit Bound : A Vampire Academy Novel, by Richelle Mead (489 pages) – This is the fifth novel in the series. And what happens? ‘Rose Hathaway has finally returned to St. Vladimir’s and to her best friend, Lissa. But Rose’s heart still aches for Dimitri, and she knows he’s out there, somewhere. He has tasted her blood, and now he is hunting her. Only this time, he won’t rest until Rose joins him–forever.’ So says the catalogue.
First line: ‘There’s a big difference between death threats and love letters – even if the person writing the death threats still claims to actually love you.‘
Hex Hall, by Rachel Hawkins (323 pages) – Sixteen-year-old Sophie discovers she’s a witch, but after screwing up a love spell she’s sent to Hecate ‘Hex’ Hall, a reform school for witches, shapeshifters, and faeries. Also ghosts and a vampire. There’s a mystery predator also.
First line: ‘Felicia Miller was crying in the bathroom. Again.‘
The Reckoning : The Darkest Power, by Kelley Armstrong (391 pages) – Book three! Chloe is fifteen and is a genetically engineered necromancer, and has feelings for a sorcerer and his brother, a werewolf, all the while on the run from the corporation that created her (and the others).
First line: ‘After four nights on the run, I was finally safe, tucked into bed and enjoying the deep, dreamless sleep of the dead … until the dead decided they’d really rather have me awake.‘
Koh Tabu, by Ann Kelley (260 pages) – A group of girls are stranded on an island after their boat is blown off course. It’s all an adventure to begin with but quickly becomes an all-girl Lord of the Flies + Man Vs Wild mashup.
First line: ‘It all began with my mother changing her mind.‘
Rich and Mad, by William Nicholson (341 pages)
The Island, by Sarah Singleton (294 pages)
Ondine : The Summer of Shambles, by Ebony McKenna (291 pages)
Because I Am Furniture, by Thalia Chaltas (352 pages)
Pink Shirt Day is on April 28th. What is Pink Shirt Day? Here’s what the website had to say…
Pink Shirt Day aims to show that bullying is not ok and won’t be tolerated. By encouraging the people of New Zealand to wear a Pink Shirt on the 28th of April we can help to raise awareness of bullying and show there is a massive amount of people who support taking a stance against bullying.
Sounds good to me! Get your pink on and show everyone that bullying is so not cool!
Only a few new books this week.
The Splendour Falls, by Rosemary Clement-Moore (220 pages) – Sylvie is a ballerina. She broke a leg, her father died, and her mother remarried! Also, she might be losing her mind (or it might be ghosts). To cheer her up her mother moves her from an Manhattan apartment to a haunted Alabama mansion, where she meets the mysterious yet attractive Rhys.
First line: ‘For months, I relived the pas de deux in my dreams, in that multisensory Technicolor of a memory I’d much rather forget.‘
The Polar Bear Ward, edited by Tessa Duder and James Norcliffe (118 pages) -This is the seventh Re-Draft anthology, which we finally have (it came out in 2008!) It collects works by young NZ writers and poets.
The 13 Curses, by Michelle Harrison (454 pages) – This is the sequel to 13 Treasures. Rowan Fox makes a deal with the fairy court; she will find the cursed charms from a bracelet in exchange for her brother, who was stolen by the fairies. And there’s no guarantee the fairies will keep their side of the bargain – they have a secret up their little fairy sleeves.
First line: ‘As midnight approached in Hangman’s Wood two girls fled through the forest, desperately searching for a way out.‘
The Phoenix Files : Contact, by Chris Morphew (309 pages) – This is the second book in a series. It is part sci-fi, part thiller, part conspiracy theory paranioa, and it’s all leading up to the end of the world. Great stuff! There’s a website here.
First line: ‘Someone’s phone was ringing.‘
The Medusa Project : The Hostage, by Sophie McKenzie (244 pages) – This is also the second book in a series. It also has a website! This series is about four teens, who all exhibit psychic abilities. They are brought together to secretly fight crime – with their minds.
First line: ‘Like I didn’t have enough problems?‘
Winter’s End, by Jean-Claude Mourlevat (trans. Anthea Bell) (415 page) – This is originally French, and it’s also been released as Winter Song. It made one of our Top 10 lists (Books in Which Winter Stars) under that title, and you can read about it there.
First line: ‘At a sign from the supervisor, a girl in the front row rose to her feet and went over to press the metal switch.‘
Hi! Here are this week’s new books.
Watching Jimmy, by Nancy Hartry (152 pages) – Carolyn’s best friend, Jimmy, is assaulted by his uncle, and is left with brain damage. The uncle tells everyone that Jimmy fell from a swing, but Carolyn knows the truth. She must protect Jimmy from his uncle and also try to raise some funds for Jimmy’s brain surgery.
First line: ‘Uncle Ted said Jimmy bumped his head falling off the swing.‘
Alphas, by Lisi Harrison (261 pages) – This promises to be the first in a series by the author of The Clique. It’s set in the exclusive Alpha Academy on Alpha Island, where one hundred girls – all ‘exceptional dancers, writers, musicians, and inventors’ – live a kind of Survivor-esque lifestyle? I feel inadequate just reading the blurb.
First line: ‘There were five Skye Hamiltons in the Body Alive Dance Studio.‘
The Everafter, by Amy Huntly (144 pages) – Madison is dead, and in a vast & dark space she shares with all the things she lost when she was alive. The items allow her to re-experience and even change moments from her life. She consequently learns truths about her life; and ‘the strength of true love even beyond death.’
First line: ‘I’m dead.‘
Perfect You, by Elizabeth Scott (282 pages) – Kate is forced to work with her dad, who has quit his job to sell vitamins in a mall. Her best friend’s new-found popularity means she now ignores Kate, and she doesn’t know how to react when the gorgeous Will shows an interest in her. SO. She tries to stop caring about anyone or anything, which is never a good idea is it? No.
First line: ‘Vitamins had ruined my life.‘
How to Say Goodbye in Robot, by Natalie Standiford (276 pages) – Bea moves to a new town and makes friends with Jonah, a ‘quiet observer’, rather than one of the ‘very cheery, very friendly, very average’ girls she meets on the first day. Jonah’s and Bea’s friendship is intense to say the least. Also they have a thing for Iceland, my favourite country!
First line: ‘Goebbels materialized on the back patio, right before we moved to Baltimore, and started chewing through the wicker love seat.‘
The Dark Divine, by Bree Despain (372 pages) – A supernatural Christian romance (the first, maybe?) about the daughter of a pastor, Grace Divine, and the apple of her eye, Daniel Kalbi, who comes from a line of demon-hunting werewolves.
First lines: ‘”Grace! You have got to see the new guy.” April bounded up to me in the junior hallway.‘
First line: ‘There are these bizarre people who actually like physical education class.‘
The Museum of Mary Child, by Cassandra Golds (329 pages) – Handily annotated by the catalogue: ‘Heloise finds a mysterious doll and is forced to run away, ending up in an orphanage. But one day, she must return to the house where the devastating secret of her past awaits.‘
First lines: ‘A shaft of moonlight. A barred window. A bed of straw, and a young man, little more than a boy, chained to a wall.‘
Rage : A Love Story, by Mary Anne Peters (293 pages) – From the catalogue again, as it can be difficult to summarise a book just from the blurb! ‘At the end of high school, Johanna finally begins dating the girl she has loved from afar, but Reeve is as much trouble as she claims to be as she and her twin brother damage Johanna’s self-esteem, friendships, and already precarious relationship with her sister.‘
First line: ‘I locate the room on the first floor where Mrs Goins asked me to meet her.‘
Wish You Were Dead, by Todd Strasser (236 pages) – An anonymous blogger wishes the school’s most popularist girl was dead, and the next day she disappears. Her friend, Madison, begins to receive notes that say she’s next; she turns to mysterious new student Tyler for assistance with the mystery.
First line: ‘The red taillights of Tyler Starling’s ugly purple car disappeared into the dark.‘
Heroes of the Valley, by Jonathan Stroud (389 pages) – Epic fantasy set in an enormous valley, which was once a wild place besieged by bloodthirsty Trows. Now that it’s much calmer, Halli pines for the olden days of legendary heroes. A chance to go on a daring quest unites him with Aud, a girl as headstrong and reckless as he is.
First line: ‘Listen then, and I’ll tell you again of the Battle of the Rock.‘
Fallen, by Lauren Kate (452 pages) – This book has loads of reserves on it! It looks to be a supernatural romance (a la Twilight etc.) about a girl named Luce, who goes to a new school and meets Daniel, to whom she is irrestibly attracted. He is an angel btw and things get complex.
First line: ‘Luce barged into the fluorescent-lit lobby of the Sword & Cross School ten minutes later than she should have.‘
Manstealing for Fat Girls, by Michelle Embree (256 pages)
Once a Princess : Sasharia en Garde! Book 1, by Sherwood Smith (278 pages)
Twice a Prince : Sasharia en Garde! Book 2, by Sherwood Smith (265 pages)
There are only six, which is less than usual! Never mind.
The Wednesday Wars, by Gary D. Schmidt (264 pages) – This came out in 2007 and won a Newbery Honor Medal in 2008. It’s about a boy growing up in 1967 on Long Island, in the U.S. A pretty tumultuous time.
First line: ‘Of all the kids in the seventh grade at Camillo Junior High, there was one kid that Mrs. Baker hated with heat whiter than the sun.‘
Pink, by Lili Wilkinson (288 pages) – Ava takes on a new image – she doesn’t want to wear black and she doesn’t want to like girls, so she takes to wearing pink and acting perky and even tries to get a boyfriend. Her new ’shiny reinvented life is far more fragile than she imagines.’
First line: ‘”You’re leaving?’ Chloe dropped my hand. “I know, it sucks,” I lied. ‘My parents think I’ll get better marks at a new school.” Another lie.’
Troubadour, by Mary Hoffman (290 pages) – Set in France during the Crusades. Elinor, a young noblewoman, is told she must marry a much older man. So she scarpers and becomes a troubadour, a wandering poet, like the guy she’s in love with, Bertram.
First line: ‘A small group of monks was making its way down to the river crossing.‘
King of the Screwups : A Novel, by K. L. Going (310 pages) – After getting in trouble yet again, popular high school senior Liam, who never seems to live up to his wealthy father’s expectations, is sent to live in a trailer park with his gay “glam-rocker” uncle [Catalogue description].
First line (well, of the second chapter): ‘“You’re a screwup, Liam. Do you think being Mr. Popularity will be enough to get you by in life?”‘
Time of Trial : The Fourth Volume of The Laws of Magic, by Michael Pryor (427 pages) – I’ve not read these and it’s difficult to find out the story’s premise. It looks cool! If anyone has read the series please comment.
First line: ‘Aubrey Fitzwilliam braced himself for the next attack from his young, tall and menacing adversary.‘
Raw Blue, by Kirsty Eagar (273 pages)