The Rise of Nine, Pittacus Lore (August/September). This is the third in the Lorien Legacies series (the first being I Am Number Four, which also became a movie). You can read a short extract here. The Rise of Nine begins with Six as narrator, and things are going not too well for the Lorien survivors, although the awesome Nine may yet save the day?
If you haven’t already discovered this on the catalogue, and you’ve been hanging out for the next instalment in the series, reserve it now!
Here are a bunch of new books. Not all of the recent arrivals are listed! Sorry! Browse the YA New Book shelves next time you’re in and you might find your new favourite book.
Liar’s Moon, by Elizabeth C. Bunce (356 pages) – here’s a follow-up to StarCrossed, set in a colourful adventure-fantasy world where pickpocket Digger must somehow prove aristo-hottie Lord Durrel Decath did not kill his wife with the poisons he kept lying around. Award-winning magic and conspiracy!
First lines: ‘I’d have gotten away if that little guard hadn’t cracked me in the eye. His elbow hit me sharp against my cheekbone and sent me reeling.‘
Perfected by Girls, by Alfred C. Martino (310 pages) – Melinda really likes wrestling, and is the only girl on the school team. Americans love wrestling! To them it is a like cricket is to us, I think? Anyway, as the only girl, Melinda has a rough time of it; hassles from her peers, and no one wants to wrestle her. Family life is proving a little challenging also, but things take a clothesline to the face (in a good way!) when she gets to wrestle with a varsity team.
First lines: ‘Sometimes I wish I were a guy. I know that sounds stupid, probably ridiculously stupid – my best friend, Jade, would certainly say it does.’
The Shadowing : Hunted, by Adam Slater (193 pages) – This is book one in The Shadowing, a series about a period of time when the wall between our world and the demon realm break down. Yikes! Don’t worry though, it is fiction. Not for Callum Scott, though, who has seen ghosts all his life. He has terrifying visions that start to come true! A dark destiny dictates that he in the one who stands between our world and the *whispers* world of demons.
First line: ‘Callum was miserable and cold. He sat hugging his rugby kitbag while he waited for his train, trying to ignore the ghost that stood beside him on the empty station platform.’
Body of Water, by Sarah Dooley (324 pages) – Ember – twelve-years-old and unfortunately named – is left homeless after her best friend torches her family’s trailer. His father thinks her family are witches! Crazy what people believe. So now they live in a campground with no money and a missing dog. She only finds peace when floating in the middle of a lake, which seems reasonable you must admit.
First line: ‘I’m certain there were puddles, even before the fire trucks came.‘
Yes, by Deborah Burnside (272 pages) – Marty’s friend Luke suggests that they get involved with the Young Enterprise Scheme (actually a real thing!) as it will make them rich and popular. Marty isn’t so keen! But what comes next is a ‘whole lot bigger and weirder than he could ever have imagined …’
First line: ‘Mum slammed the door, a bit harder than necessary if you ask me, on her way out.‘
Girls Don’t Fly, by Kristen Chandler (300 pages) – I allow myself at least one copy & paste job from the catalogue, just because: ‘Myra, a high school senior, will do almost anything to win a contest and earn money for a study trip to the Galapagos Islands, which would mean getting away from her demanding family life in Utah and ex-boyfriend Erik, but Erik is set on winning the same contest.’
First line: ‘If I close my eyes anc concentrate on the squawking gulls and the heat of the sun on my skin, it’s almost like I’m at the beach.’
The Silence of Murder, by Dandi Daley Mackall (327 pages) – Hope Long’s brother, Jeremy, who is eighteen and hasn’t spoken a word since he was nine, is accused of murdering the local baseball coach. Hope is adamant that Jeremy is innocent! And also sane! She has other suspects in mind, and determined to find out the truth. A new entry in the growing teen murder mystery genre, you morbid lot
First line: ‘The first time Jeremy heard God sing, we were in the old Ford, rocking back and forth with the wind.‘
Hunting Lila, by Sarah Alderson (317 pages) – Lila loves her brother’s best friend, Alex, who, along with Lila’s brother, Jack, work for a secret organisation called The Unit. Lila has the power to move things with her mind, and she discovers that others also have powers – including one of the men who killed her mother five years previously. So you know there will be trouble.
First line: ‘Only when th tip of the knife started to shave against the white of his eye like a scalpel about to pierce a boil, did I realise that I was the one holding it.‘
Born at Midnight, by C. C. Hunter (406 pages) – This is the first in a new series (the Shadow Falls series), about a camp that is a training ground for vampires, werewolves, witches, fairies, and so on. There they learn to live in the normal world and not freak out too many people with their powers. Kylie Galen is sent there, but she doesn’t know why – everyone seems sure that she belongs there, but she isn’t so sure. Also Derek (half fairy) and Lucas (werewolf) are both dreamy and she can’t chooooooose
First lines: ‘“This isn’t funny!” her father yelled. No, it wasn’t, Kylie Halen thought as she leaned into the refrigerator to find something to drink.’
The Extraordinaires : The Extinction Gambit – Part One, by Michael Pryor (376 pages) – The first in a new series by Michael Pryor, author of the Laws of Magic series. Here, below, is the official trailer, to tempt you.
Human.4, Mike Lancaster
Ever think you’re missing what’s going on between what’s said and what’s not? And what if you did wake up and find the world was a completely different and scary place? Those things that go bump in the night? This book isn’t going to help you with those fears. It’s probably going to make them worse.
This book starts with an introduction, apparently from some unknown point in the future explaining about reading and books. What follows is the transcription of some tapes that have been found that were recorded around our time by someone called Kyle Straker. Kyle was living a normal life in a small town, his parents had a few issues, and he was doing his best to get out of going to the annual talent show. All pretty average stuff really. But during the talent show, he volunteers to be hypnotised. And afterwards he finds that the entire world has changed. People don’t seem the same, phones and computers don’t work anymore. And with only a couple of other “normal” people, finding out what is going on is rather difficult. I thought I knew what was going on about halfway in, then it turned out to be something just slightly, but rather critically different. And that’s about all I can say without giving too much away!
Totally a fantastic book. Dystopia and very much a classic science fiction story going on as well (not too strong though, so don’t worry if you aren’t into serious sci fi!)
Recommended if you liked the Gone series (Michael Grant), creepy dystopia books like Unwind (Neal Shusterman) and Peeps (Scott Westerfeld) or science fiction books like The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary Pearson. Also thoroughly recommended if you liked The Matrix as that’s what I kept thinking of when I was reading it!
And if you got an eBook reader for Christmas or like reading on your computer then this is also available on Overdrive, under the title “0.4″.
These two book covers caught the eye: space is purple!
Does a similar cover have a similar story?
Across the Universe, Beth Revis. “Amy, a cryogenically frozen passenger aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed, is nearly killed when her cyro chamber is unplugged fifty years before Godspeed’s scheduled landing. All she knows is that she must race to unlock Godspeed’s hidden secrets before whoever woke her tries to kill again–and she doesn’t know who she can trust on a ship ruled by a tyrant.” (catalogue)
Glow (Sky Chasers), Amy Kathleen Ryan. “On board a space ship traveling across the galaxy, sixteen year old Waverley and Kieran are part of the first generation born in space. They are in love but one day they are wrenched apart and find themselves fighting for their lives.” (catalogue)
Finder’s Shore, by Anna Mackenzie (218 pages) – This, the ‘gripping finale to the award-winning Sea-Wreck Stranger Trilogy’, has Ness returning back to the island she fled from three years previously. A ‘haunting exploration of belonging, of life’s tangled threads, of the stark and unsettling reality of ambition and greed.’ Look for it in next year’s NZ Post Children’s Book Awards, and say to yourself, “man, that guy on that library blog was right – again”.
First lines: ‘Blood binds me to this place. Blood and memory.‘
King of Ithaka, by Tracy Barrett (261 pages) – Telemachos is the son of Odysseus, king of Ithaka, and although the island has been doing okay without its ruler (who has been dealing with the Trojan War) for many years, the people are getting restless. They want a new king! So Telemachos leaves home to find his dad with only a cryptic prophecy to guide him.
First line: ‘Brax snorted and stamped, his bony knee grazing my ear.‘
Bad Taste in Boys, by Carrie Harris (201 pages) – Kate Grable wants to become a physician, so when she gets to help her high school football team she’s thrilled, as it’s a nice career move. And she also has a crush on the quarterback. However, the idiot coach has been giving the team steroids which somehow turn the team into zombies who crave the ‘other’ white meat, if you know what I mean (i.e., they literally want to eat Kate and her pals). Can Kate find an antidote? Or will she be food?
First line: ‘“You’re one of thos genius types,” said Coach, nudging me with a beefy elbow.‘
The Unidentified, by Rae Mariz (296 pages) – It is … the future! But it’s a dystopian future, sadly. Fifteen-year-old Katey goes to school in a mall/school (‘The Game‘) run by corporations, who use the students for market research and product creation. One day she witnesses a shocking anticorporate prank, and by following the clues she discovers a counterculture group who call themselves The Unidentified. They too become part of the marketing they so dislike, so Katey decides to do something that could change The Game forEVER!
First lines: ‘If reality TV cameras were installed in my high school, the would be focused directly on the Pit. That’s where all the drama plays out.‘
Picture The Dead, by Adele Griffin and Lisa Brown (262 pages) – I am having trouble summarising this book, so here’s the catalogue; ‘After Jennie Lovell’s fiancé, Will, is killed during the Civil War, she forms an alliance with a spirit photographer and uses her ability to talk to the dead to investigate the secrets Will was hiding and how he really died.’ This book (a ghost story and a mystery!) has many lovely illustrations!
First line: ‘It’s dark outside, an elsewhere hour between midnight and dawn. I lie awake, frozen, waiting for a sound not yet audible.‘
Never Sit Down in a Hoopskirt : And Other Things I learned in Southern Belle Hell, by Crickett Rumley (296 pages) – Deliquent seventeen-year-old Jane has been expelled from thirteen boarding schools, and so is sent back to the small town in Alabama her family comes from. There she finds herself stuck in Magnolia Maid Pageant hell, where everyone wears pearls and those massive Gone With The Wind-type dresses covered in ruffles and lace and drink sweet tea and eat fried green tomatoes. Can she escape, or will they make a Southern belle out of her?
First line: ‘There’s a whole chapter in the Magnolia Court Orientation Handbook titled “Manners Befitting a Maid Upon Announcement of Selection to the Court.”‘
The Midnight Palace, by Carlos Ruiz Zafon (298 pages) – Ben and Sheere are twins. When just wee babies in Calcutta, they were rescued from an unthinkable threat. Later, in the 1930s and on their sixteenth birthday, it reappears and so they – and a secret society of orphans – must face ‘the most frightening creature in the history of the City of Palaces’. This book is translated from the Spanish, which suggests that it’s probably going to be quite creepy somehow (the scariest night of my life was due to a Spanish horror film. It haunts me still).
First line: ‘Shortly after midnight, a boat emerged out of the mist that rose like a fetid curse from the surface of the Hooghly River.‘
Mostly Good Girls, by Leila Sales (347 pages) – Catalogue, please: ‘Sixteen-year-olds Violet and Katie, best friends since seventh grade despite differences in their family backgrounds and abilities, are pulled apart during their junior year at Massachusetts’ exclusive Westfield School.’ “Brilliant, poignant, and straight-up hilarious,” says Lauren Oliver. “Recommend this to fans of Meg Cabot’s novels and academy-based stories,” argues Booklist. “Suggest this one to readers who enjoy the writing style of Ally Carter. A strong debut that is not be missed,” adds School Library Journal, knowingly.
First lines: ‘Poor Mr. Thompson. Mr’s Thompson is my precalc teacher, and he is also the only male at the Westfield School.‘
Payback Time, by Carl Deuker (298 pages) – Mitch wants to be a writer, so he becomes – a little reluctantly! – the sports reporter for his high school’s newspaper. The football (not soccer, or even rugby, but gridiron) team’s quarterback, Angel, is obviously really talented at his ball-handling abilities, but doesn’t appear too keen to show them on the field. And the coach never lets him anyway. What gives, Angel? What’s the story here? Mitch is determined to find out, ‘in this thriller both thought-provoking and suspenseful.’
First lines: ‘I’m going to be a famous reporter. My name – Daniel True – will be on the front page of the New York Times.’
The Anti-Prom, by Abby McDonald (280 pages) – Three girls, each somehow done a wrong by the guys who were supposed to take them to the school prom, decide to seek revenge and ‘team up for a night of rebellion, romance, and revenge.’ Sort of like Carrie but funnier and not a horror. Heh. Eh heh heh.
First lines: ‘He doesn’t kiss me like that. That’s the first thing I think when I find Kaitlin Carter getting to second base with my boyfriend in the back of our rental limo.‘
An Act of Love, by Alan Gibbons (295 pages) – When only seven-years-old, besties Chris and Imran became blood brothers. Now, eleven years later, one has joined the army and is serving in Afghanistan, and the other is a potential jihad recruit. They certainly aren’t friends anymore. ‘Will their childhood bond be strong enough to overcome an extremist plot?’
First lines: ‘you think you’re invincible when you’re a kid. Invincible, that’s a laugh.‘
Here they are! Exclaim!
You, by Charles Benoit (223 pages) – Fifteen-year-old Kyle makes some choices that will come to haunt him. In a big way. You are Kyle, in that the book is in the second person, you know? Kyle is a bit of a thug who is turned into a ‘project’ by Zack, who has come from a private school and who may actually be quite sinister.
First lines: ‘You’re surprised at all the blood.‘
The Darlings Are Forever, by Melissa Kantor (328 pages) – The Darlings are some friends who have matching necklaces, a shared motto, and their own table at Ga Ga Noodle. Now they all are heading to different schools in New York City! Will they stay friends?! I bet the Ga Ga Noodle people want them to.
First line: ‘The Labor Day sun was scorching, and as Jane waited for the light to change, she could practically hear her dark hair frizzing.‘
You Against Me, by Jenny Downham (412 pages) – Mikey’s sister claims a boy assaulted her, and Ellie’s brother is charged with the offence. Mikey and Ellie are both caught up; he seeks revenge and she must defend her brother. “Brave and unflinching,” says the blurb, along with (the optimistic) “above all it’s a book about love.”
First line: “Mikey couldn’t believe his life.”
Darkest Mercy, by Melissa Marr (327 pages) – Here it is; the final Wicked Lovely book. ‘The political and romantic tensions that began when Aislin became Summer Queen threaten to boil over as the Faerie Courts brace against the threat of all-out war,’ says the Library of Congress cataloging-in-publication data summary, not incorrectly.
First line: ‘Niall walked through the ruins of the tattoo shop.‘
The Maya Brown Missions : Circle of Fire, by S. M. Hall (291 pages) – Fifteen-year-old Maya’s mum is an intelligence agent, and Maya can’t wait to be one herself. She enjoys assault courses and shooting ranges and maybe Spooks? Not sure on that. Anyway, her mother is kidnapped by terrorists, and Maya, alone, is determined to infiltrate the terrorist cell and rescue her.
First line: ‘Maya opened her eyes to a room full of shadows.‘
Eternal : More Love Stories with Bite, ed. P. C. Cast with Leah Wilson (215 pages) – Here’s a collection of love stories with people being bitten by vampires. The stories are by a who’s who of modern YA authors who write about the supernatural, like Nancy Holder, Rachel Caine and Claudie Gray. And the girl on the cover looks JUST LIKE Buffy to me, do you reckon? Say yes.
6, by Karen Tayleur (203 pages) – ‘One car. One after-party. Six people, six points of view. But only one outcome.’ The book ends with the outcome (which you might be able to guess) but has an ending that I read several times, it was so powerful. (I only read the ends of books.)
First line: ‘A light drizzle falls upon a car.‘
The Latte Rebellion, by Sarah Jamila Stevenson (328 pages) – Asha Jamison and her best friend sell t-shirts to help fund a post-graduation trip to London. The shirts promote the Latte Rebellion, a club that raises awareness of mixed-race students. But the club goes nationwide, and the peaceful underground movement ’spins out of control’, and Asha’s ivy league dreams are subsequently threatened.
First line: ‘The jeering male voice came from somewhere behind me, waking me up from a heatstroke-induced doze.‘
Blood Ransom, by Sophie McKenzie (418 pages) – This is the sequel to Blood Ties, which was about cloning and genetic manipulation. This is also about cloning and genetic manipulation, it looks like! And missing persons. And ransoms of missing persons, who are clones. I wish I had a clone!
First line: ‘It was a Saturday afternoon in early July and I was looking forward to the highlight of my week – the hour or so when Theo and I met online and everything else dropped away.‘
All Just Glass, by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes (246 pages) – Sarah is from a family of vampire hunters. It is a family business! But when she is turned into a vampire by boy she loved (ironically!) she becomes the hunted. By her sister, Sarah, no less, who is made to by her mother. “Aww, mom.”
First line: ‘Saturday, 5.53 a.m. The ringing in her ears was the sound of the world shattering.‘
The Blending Time, by Michael Kinch (254 pages) – In a dystopian future, teenagers are made to perform ‘Global Assignment’ work assignments when the turn seventeen. Three such teens are given what they think is a cushy job; to repopulate and rebuild African, which has been devastated by a solar flare. But it’s not quite the stroll through the rose garden that they thought …
First line: ‘Jaym stirred as morning light slanted across his cot.‘
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.‘
Do you have an iGoogle homepage? Sure you do! There’s now an official Wellington City Libraries Catalogue search gadget you can add to your homepage that will effortlessly allow you to find whatever you’re looking for. Get it here (and give us feedback about it why don’t you).
We have a few new books that continue already established series. I won’t go into too much detail about each (just because) but your favourite vampire/werewolf/spy series may be one of them.
Awakened : A House of Night Novel (Book 8 ), by P.C and Kirstin Cast (290 pages)
Demon Games : Changeling (Book 4), by Steve Feasey (343 pages)
Only The Good Spy Young : The Gallagher Girls (Book 4), by Ally Carter (265 pages)
Twelfth Grade Kills : The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod (Book 5), by Heather Brewer (325 pages)
Keys To the Repository : Blue Bloods (sort of a tie-in to the series), by Melissa de la Cruz (227 pages)
Here are the other new books!
A Waltz for Matilda, by Jackie French (479 pages) – This is a novelisation of the poem that is also a song (which I used to think was Australia’s nation anthem, oddly) about Matilda, her father (the swagman!), the billabong, and ‘Australia’s early years as an emerging nation.’
First lines: ‘August 1894 – Dear Dad, I hope you are well.‘
Whisper My Name, by Jane Eagland (394 pages) – A spooky book about Meriel, who lives with her strict Victorian grandfather. It is a solitary life but she’s not always alone - someone is ‘reaching out to her, someone who is close than she thinks …’
First line: ‘Meriel decided to place her deckchair as far as she could from Mrs Fitzgerald’s, but still within earshot.‘
Hit List, by Jack Heath (256 pages) – Teenager Ash and her pal Benjamin find stolen artifacts and return them to their owners for a fee. But when they’re asked to rescue a captive girl they soon find themselves up against corrupt governments, ruthless corporations, and assassins. Assassins!
First lines: ‘Practice. It would take practice, but it could be done.‘
The Exiled Queen : A Seven Realms Novel, by Cinda Williams Chima (586 pages) – This is the second book in the series. We wrote about the first one here. In this installment, according to the catalogue, ‘two teenagers, one fleeing from a forced marriage and the other from a dangerous family of wizards, cross paths and fall in love.’
First line: ‘Lietenant Mac Gillen of the Queen’s Guard of the Fells hunched his shoulders against the witch wind that howled out of the frozen wastelands to the north and west.’
Send Simon Savage, by Stephen Measday (266 pages) – Simon is thirteen when his father drowns. A secret government agency then tells him that he has the right DNA to handle the rigours of time travel, and he will be the first to travel into the future. Which he does! His missions are risky, but someone has to do it.
First line: ‘Simon spent a great Saturday body boarding with a few mates in rolling surf at the southern end of Bondi Beach.‘
Solitary : Escape from Furnace, by Alexander Gordon Smith (232 pages) – This is the sequel to Lockdown. Alex Sawyer attemped to escape from Furnace prison, where he has been imprisoned on false charges, but he failed and is now in solitary confinement. ‘… hurtle from thrill to chill in this rocket-paced prison-break odyssey where nightmares are made.’ Yeow!
First lines: ‘I have a confession. I’m not a good person.’
The Last Dragonslayer, by Jasper Fforde (281 pages) – Back in the day magic was powerful, but now it’s regulated by the government and it’s cheaper for people to get things done non-magically. But! Fifteen-year-old Jennifer, who runs an employment agency for magicians and soothsayers, begins to have visions that hint at dragons and Big Magic. (Fforde is a very funny writer, and has a lot of quality books in the adult section. Let me recommend them to you.)
First line: ‘It looked set to become even hotter by the afternoon, just when the job was becoming more fiddly and needed extra concentration.‘
Here are last week’s new books, this week! This week’s new books may be announced this week, or next week. Who can say.
Elixir : A Novel, by Hilary Duff (with Elise Allen) (330 pages) – You may have heard of Hilary Duff – she’s been on the telly and recorded some albums I think – and she now turns her hands to writing a novel. Elixir is about Clea, whose photographs begin to show a ghostly/gorgeous man at about the same time her father, a renowned surgeon, disappears.
First lines: ‘I couldn’t breathe. Wedged in the middle of an ocean of people, I gasped for air, but nothing came.‘
Bamboo People : A Novel, by Mitali Perkins (272 pages) – Chiko is forced into the Burmese army; Tu Reh is a refugee, a member of an oppressed Burmese minority, and he’s keen to join the resistance. The two boys’ stories come to a ‘violent intersection’ and an unlikely friendship forms.
First lines: ‘Teachers wanted. Applicants must take examination in person. Salaries start at -‘
Sugar and Spice : An L. A. Candy Novel, by Lauren Conrad (279 pages) – This is the last book in this series about some TV reality show (much like The Hills which made Conrad famous in the first place).
First line: ‘“Over here!” “Let’s get a shot of the two of you!” “Smile, girls!” Jane Roberts felt hands on her shoulders – her publicist? random PopTV assistants? – maneuver her into place as several paprazzi shouted out to her and Scarlett Harp.‘
The Daughters, by Joanna Philbin (297 pages) – A supermodel’s unconventional-looking daughter becomes “the new face of beauty”. Everyone is surprised but they roll with it. The first in a series.
First line: ‘“Katia!” “Katia!” “Over here!” “Over here!”‘
Revolution, by Jennifer Donnelly (471 pages) – Andi is about to be expelled from her swanky Brooklyn school, so goes to Paris with her father as some sort of punishment. She finds a diary writen two centuries previously by a girl, Alexandrine, who became involved with a French prince just as the French Revolution begins. Andi finds comfort and distraction in the journal, until the past ‘becomes terrifyingly real’.
First line: ‘Those who can, do. Those who can’t, deejay.’
Behemoth, by Scott Westerfeld (Illustrations by Keith Thompson) (485 pages) – This is the second book in the Leviathan Trilogy. We wrote about the first book here. This a great read – it has steam-powered mechs, genetically-engineered flying ships, and a Tesla cannon. That’s right – a freaking TESLA CANNON.
First line: ‘Alek raised his sword. “On guard, sir!”‘
Duff : The Designated Ugly Fat Friend, by Kody Keplinger (280 pages) – Seventeen-year-old Bianca detests Wesley, who calls her “the Duff”. Not Hilary Duff! But family troubles and other circumstantial occurences result in the pair becoming more than enemies. Less than enemies? They fall in love, in any case.
First line: ‘This was getting old.’
Scandal, by Kate Brian (228 pages) – The lastest in the Private series. ‘After her terrifying Carribean vacation,’ says the back cover, ‘Reed can’t wait to get back to Easton and resume her normal life of classes, shopping trips and late-night gossip sessions.’ Reed’s in for a shock, however, as Billings house has been demolished and the Billings girls have been separated by the admin.
First line: ‘We came from all corners of campus.‘
Boost, by Kathy Mackel (248 pages) – Savvy is over six feet tall, and only thirteen. When you’re tall everyone asks you if you play basketball over and over, let me tell you, but Savvy actually does play and loves it. But she’s too light! So she turns to steroids.
First line: ‘I stood at the free throw line, all eyes on me.‘
Jane, by April Lindner (373 pages) – This is a modern re-telling of Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë’s cheery classic novel. This is set in the present, so Rochester becomes Nico Rathburn, world-famous rockstar, and Jane Moore, an orphaned student-turned-nanny is the protaganist. Sticks to the original story while being ’something totally new and captivating,’ according to Cecily von Ziegesar.
First line: ‘The chairs in the lobby of Discriminating Nannues, Inc., were less comfortable that they looked.’
Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares, by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan (260 pages) – From the authors of Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, which is also a movie! Will this be a movie also? Yes, apparently.
First line: ‘Imagine this: you’re in your favourite bookstore, scanning the shelves.‘
The Three Loves of Persimmon, by Cassandra Golds (211 pages) – Persimmon Polidori owns a florist shop in an underground train station. She meets up with a brave little mouse named Epiphany, and undergoes ‘the trials of love, heartbreak, doubt and the discovery of her own true nature.’
First line: ‘In a tiny hole under the train tracks on the deepest level of a vast underground railway station, lived a mouse called Epiphany.‘
The Blue-Eyed Aborigine, by Rosemary Hayes (247 pages) – This historical novel is based on fact; in 1629, the crew of a Dutch ship mutinied and the boat wrecked near Australia. Two of the crew, a cabin boy and a young soldier, survive and their fates are linked with ‘discoveries that intrigue Australians to this day.’
First lines: ‘Jan Pelgrom was miserable. He’d been a cabin boy for more than five years.‘
The Jumbee, by Pamela Keyes (385 pages) – Esti Legard moves to a Caribbean island for her senior year in high school. There she ‘finds herself torn between a mysterious, masked mentor and a seductive island boy’, in a scenario borrowed from the classic novel, The Phantom of the Opera.
First line: ‘“Paul is dead!”‘
The Ghosts of Ashbury High, by Jaclyn Moriarty (480 pages) – The catalogue has this to say: ‘Student essays, scholarship committee members’ notes, and other writings reveal interactions between a group of modern-day students at an exclusive New South Wales high school and their strange connection to a young Irishman transported to Australia in the early 1800s.’
Raised by Wolves, by Jennifer Lynn Barnes (418 pages) – At the age of four, Bryn’s parents were killed by bad werewolves. She was taken and raised by good werewolves! Years later she discovers that her pack are keeping secrets. Dark werewolf secrets about her family, that she’s determined to uncover (the secrets, not her family).
First line: ‘“Bronwyn Alessia St. Vincent Clare!”‘
100% Justin Bieber : First Step 2 Forever : My Story, by Justin Bieber (236 pages) – This is the tween pop star’s official autobiography, discussing his rapid rise to power. Where to next for Bieber? It has loads of photos and a reasonable amount of text.