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Teen Blog

Reading, Wellington, and whatever else – teenblog@wcl.govt.nz

Month: January 2013

Miscellaneous book news

Every once in a while we do random news, and today’s the day for a bit more.

The Carrie Diaries come to TV sometime soon

The Carrie Diaries, by Candace Bushnell, tells the story of Carrie Bradshaw as she comes of age in New York City, discovering shoes, fashion, writing etc. in the 1980s, i.e. before Sex and the City. It is only right that this should also be made into a TV series, complete with fab 80s fashion, and starring AnnaSophia Robb, who was Leslie Burke in Bridge to Terabithia.

John Green live in the middle of the night

John Green (New York Times bestselling and teen blog most-wanted author) will be talking about his books and other important things live on the 4th of February… at 2pm GMT, which is 3am on the 5th of February Wellington time. It’s happening courtesy of Puffin UK, and you can go here to register / watch live (if you’re a morning person).

The Mortal Instruments series extra content, all in one place

If you want to read snippets, extras and deleted scenes from the Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare, they’ve been collated on this tumblr right here. This includes special content from City of Lost Souls, which has recently been made available, for example ‘Becoming Sebastian Verlac’.

New Books

Heppy new yur!

Middle School : Get Me Out of Here!, by James Patterson and Chris Tebbetts (257 pages) – Rafe Khatchodorian is in middle school, which I think must be intermediate? Is it? He gets to leave and go to an art school in the city, which isn’t the break from the existential horror of middle school that he’d hoped for. This is the sequel to Middle School : The Worst Years of My Life!.

First lines: ‘Well, who’d have thought so much could change in one summer? Not me, that’s for sure. Not my best buddy, Leonardo the Silent.

Beta, by Rachel Cohn (331 pages) – Elysia was born as a sixteen-year-old, as fresh as any cloned scientific creation thrown together in a lab could be. She is to serve the wealthy inhabitants of paradise island, Demesne, but Elysia isn’t the souless clone that her makers think she is, and when her only chance at happiness is booted off the island (literally!), she learns she needs to fight back.

First lines: ‘It’s me she wants to purchase. The fancy lady claims she came into the resort boutique looking to buy a sweater, but she can’t take her eyes off me.

Made on Earth, by Wolfgang Korn (184 pages) – This is the story of one item of clothing and the people it connects (a red polar fleece, if you can imagine such a thing) in the context of globalisation. ‘This is a story about people, their livelihoods and their life expectations.’ Its written as a short novel, but could almost be non-fiction I reckon.

First line: ‘It was not love at first sight, no way! Bright red fleeces are for young girls, or Liverpool FC fans. They are definately not for tough journalists.

The Turning, by Francine Prose (246 pages) – Jack gets a job on a private island, babysitting the orphaned niece and nephew of some rich guy. The kids are well-behaved (if a little odd), while the cook, Mrs Gross seems nice enough. BUT things are not what they seem – he keeps seeing people that no one else can see – and he begins to feel like he is losing his grip. This is based on Henry James’ The Turn of the Screw. By the way!

First line: ‘Dear Sophie, I’m afraid this is going to sound crazy. But a very strange thing just happened.

The Curiosities : A Collection of Stories, by Maggie Stiefvater, Tessa Gratton, and Brenna Yovanoff (291 pages) – The three authors of this book are all published authors of paranormal fiction, and a few years ago they all got together and created a website called merryfates.com, where they each posted a small short story once a week. This book is a compilation of such stories, along with lots of annotations from the authors (similar to the website’s comments I guess?). I don’t think the website is a going concern anymore, but here’s the book anyway. It gets a nice 4 stars on Goodreads.

Star-crossed : 18 Tales of Bittersweet Love, by Frances Kelly & Penny Murray (306 pages) – Like it says in the title! This is a collection of love stories. They are all retellings of classic romances from the olden days; Shakespeare, fable, myth, and fact are all covered, from Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor to Robin Hood and Maid Marian. Each has a little end-note explaining the romance preceding it and recommending more sources. So yeah, loads of romance.

Speechless, by Hannah Harrington (268 pages) – Chelsea nearly got someone killed indirectly when she blabbed someone’s secret, so, as a consequence, she takes a vow of silence. Her old friends all still blame her, and by not talking she’s not necessarily endearing herself to them, but other people – people she wouldn’t have once had much to do with – soon come out of the woodwork. One boy she might even have a future with. The 500 people who have reviewd it on Goodreads really like it, so get cracking and read it okay

First line: ‘Keping secrets isn’t my speciality.’

Easy, by Tammara Webber (310 pages) – Jacqueline moves to a new city to study at college with her boyfriend, but he dumps her, leaving her stranded – friendless and alone in a place she’d rather not be at, and failing a paper for the first time in her life. However, she forms an attachment with her economics tutor by email, and also meets a guy who electrifies her with his dancing. She is also being stalked, and then her ex comes back into her life. What is a girl to do

First lines: ‘I had never noticed Lucas before that night. It was as though he didn’t exist, and then suddenly, he was everywhere.

Lullaby : A Watersong Novel, by Amanda Hocking (290 pages) – This is the second book in the series that started with Wake. They series is seemingly your usual teen supernatural novel featuring a specific creature from myth and legend; in this case, the monsters are Sirens. Not the plastic lights on top of police cars! Haha, imagine that

First line: ‘Harper woke up when the sun was just beginning to set, and squinted at the dim orange light streaming in through her curtains.

Struck by Lightning : The Carson Phillips Journal, by Chris Colfer (258 pages) – Chris Colfer is the same Chris Colfer who plays (played?) Kurt Hummel on Glee. This book is based on the screenplay he wrote for the movie he made, about a high school student who is desperate to leave his small town and become a hard-hitting journalist; and to achieve his goals he resorts to blackmailing his fellow students.

First lines: ‘Dear Journal, one more school year with these $#!^heads and I’ll be free. It’s taken almost two decades of careful planning, but I’m proud to say my overdue departure from the town of Clover is only days away.

The Twinning Project, by Robert Lipsyte (269 pages) – Tom has an imaginary twin named Eddie who, in actual fact, is real and lives on another Earth that mirrors our own, but 50 years earlier, engineered by aliens. Somehow they connect and join the fight against those same aliens who are set destroy both planets.

First line: ‘I don’t fit in at school because I don’t do what I’m told if it’s stupid. I don’t keep my mouth shut when I have something to say.

Someday Dancer, by Sarah Rubin (245 pages) – It is 1959! And somewhere in the rural hindquarters of South Carolina Casey Quinn plans on leaving for New York City, where she wants to be a ballet dancer. She has the talent, but unfortunately lacks the formal training – but is there hope with contemporary dance? yep

First line: ‘Rat-a-tat-tat, my feet hit the ground, and the sound sings up like music. I am daning on the sidewalk, skipping home from school, free as a bird, and my feet are flying.

Pinned, by Sharon G. Flake (228 pages) – Catalogue synopsis: ‘Adonis is smart, intellectually gifted and born without legs; Autumn is strong, a great wrestler, and barely able to read in ninth grade – but Autumn is attracted to Adonis and determined to make him a part of her life whatever he or her best friend thinks.’

First lines: ‘You ever like a boy your friends thought you shouldn’t like? Maybe he short. Or his ears stick out. Or he got a face full of pimples. But you like him anyhow.

Arise : A Hereafter Novel, by Tara Hudson (408 pages) – This comes after Hereafter, book one in the series (which is also new to the collection). Amelia and Joshua are an item, but sadly Amelia is stuck between the worlds of the living and the dead. Threatened by dark spirits, the couple attempt a Voodoo ritual in a cemetery in an attempt at some protection, but the ceremony will change things. FOREVERRRRRR

First line: ‘The entire world had gone dark, and I had no idea why.

Eternally Yours : An Immortal Beloved Novel, by Cate Tiernan (455 pages) – Nastasya is 450-years old, but hasn’t spent all that time too wisely, so she spends five months at a special rehab for troubled immortals. In addition to learning about her family and their past, she also falls for a hot immortal viking boy, and utilises her special kind of magic to fight against the dark forces determined to wipe out all immortals around the world.

First lines: ‘Uppsala, Sweden, 1619. “Vali! Vali! Where is the girl?” I heard my employer’s voice and scrambled up the from the storage cellar.

A World Away, by Nancy Grossman (394 pages) – Eliza is sixteen, and Amish, so she’s led as sheltered a life as it’s probably possible to lead in the modern world. No Internet! Let that sink in. Anway, Eliza gets to go to Chicago as a nanny, and she’s scared. And excited! What will the world have for her? Will she return to her family back on the farm?

First line: ‘The strangers were coming, as they did every Thursday night, to bring a burst of color into our plain home. I circled the dining room, checking each lantern to be sure there was enough fuel inside.

Speed of Light : A Meridian Novel, by Amber Kizer (525 pages) – This is the third book in a series too complex for me to easily summarise. ‘Meridian and Tens continue to grow closer and explore their relationship of Protector and Fenestra, while sixteen-year-old Juliet Ambrose, grasping at any hope of finding her parents, considers acepting the help offered by Ms. Asura, a proven Nocti.’

First lines: ‘What if a young woman was both a girl to the living and a portal to the dying? I know the answer because I am.

My Life Next Door, by Huntley Fitzpatrick (394 pages) – Samantha Reed is the daughter of a successful US Senator, and she leads a typically proper and organised life. However, in the evenings, she watches the family next door, and is envious of their fairly disorganised, messy, and happy life. She and the eldest son, Jase, fall for each other, and the relationship remains their little secret. Until there’s a surprise twist to the story! It’s a popular book on Goodreads, if that sways you.

First lines: ‘The Garretts were forbidden from the start. But that’s not why they were important. We were standing in our yard that day ten years ago when their battered sedan pulled up to the low-slung shingled house next door, close behind the moving van.

The Evolution of Mara Dyer, by Michelle Hodkin (527 pages) – Mara Dyer has powers that only one other person – Noah – believes she has. Everyone else reckons she is has a developing mental disorder. What is truth? ‘This will have readers doubting Mara’s sanity, trusting the mental health professionals, and suspicious of Noah’s intentions.’

First lines: ‘You will love him to ruins. The words echoed in my mind as I ran through clots of laughing people. Blinking lights and delighted screams bled together in a riot of sound and color.

Summer readin’ had me a blast

It’s summer! It’s hot! Go read in the sun (or, if you’re like us, sunscreened with a hat in the shade of a tree). Here are some books set in the summertime. Can you see our thought process? Yesss.

Along For The Ride, Sarah DessenBook cover courtesy of Syndetics

Or pretty much any Sarah Dessen book, really. Pretty sure every single one of them is set during the summertime. But this one was particularly enjoyable. Tired of playing the perfect daughter role, Auden flits off to stay with her dad and stepmother in the small beach town where they live. Also, Auden doesn’t know how to ride a bike! Oh no! Luckily cute boy and fellow insomniac Eli can teach her how. They spend their nights awake together eating pie in a laundromat. Romantic! And there are family issues for Auden to deal with (you know there will be from the moment the word “stepmother” is mentioned). Dramas and romance! A perfect summer read, yes?

The Summer I Turned Pretty, Jenny HanBook cover courtesy of Syndetics

The title says it all, really. Also the main character’s name is Belly. She spends her summers with her friend Susannah, and two boys, Conrad and Jeremiah. Belly always thought of them as protective brotherly figures, or did she? Her feelings are changing towards them both and it would seem she doesn’t quite know how to handle them all. Summer! Romance! Love geometry! Kick back and enjoy.

Getting Over Garrett Delaney, Abby McDonaldBook cover courtesy of Syndetics

Sadie is smitten with her best friend Garrett Delaney, and has been ever since he waltzed into her life two years ago. She’s spent those years sharing a love for tragic Russian literature, art films and 80s indie rock with him, but he just doesn’t notice her the way she wants him to. Then Garrett heads off to literary camp for summer where he falls in love… with another girl! And tells Sadie about it! She’s a little heartbroken. Now Sadie is on a Garrett Delaney detox and a mission to reinvent herself with the aid of an eclectic new group of friends. Good luck Sadie!

Vintage Veronica, Erica S. PerlBook cover courtesy of Syndetics

Veronica is 15 when she starts her summer job at the Clothing Bonanza, a mammoth vintage clothing store. She’s also overweight, but she doesn’t let that stop her from wearing retro threads from the Dollar-A-Pound section of the store. She likes her job in the Employees Only section because she can keep to herself, but when two of the other shopgirls want Veronica to spy on their coworker Len, a skinny and awkward stock boy, she can’t help but become hopelessly entangled in all of their lives. A must read if you’re an op-shopping fashionista.

Dreams of Significant Girls, Cristina GarcíaBook cover courtesy of Syndetics

This book follows three girls – Vivian, Ingrid and Shirin – who are all from very different cultural backgrounds, but come together each summer at a boarding school in Switzerland. This is a very character driven novel showing the personal development of each of the girls as each year goes by, so not exactly an action packed boom-bang-pow kind of book. As a reader you get an insight into each of the girls’ very compelling and different backgrounds, with the European flavour of the Swiss setting. It’s hard to describe, but captivating to watch as it unfolds. Brill!

Weetzie Bat, Francesca Lia BlockBook cover courtesy of Syndetics

This one’s not for everybody, but if you like it, you’ll probably love it. Weetzie Bat and her eclectic family and friends live in a fantasy version of California where everything is neon bright and bubblegum sweet. The story unfolds as part modern fairy tale, part poetry. Weetzie comes upon a chance to make three wishes, which then come true, although perhaps not as she expects. Along with her crew of Dirk, Duck and Secret Agent Lover Man, Weetzie sets out to make it as a movie star in the glittery, glamorous world of fantasy LA. It’s a short book (around 130 pages) but it has a bunch of sequels which we also highly recommend!

The Au Pairs, Melissa de la Cruz

This book throws unto the world of the ultra-rich New Yorkers who have departed the city for the summer, heading instead to the beaches of the Hamptons. However, the three heroines are not your typical ultra-rich characters. Instead, they’re all there for very different reasons and meet each other as au pairs (nannies) for the typical rich family. Cue love stories and dramas of various sorts. Ultimately though, this is a story about finding friendship in the most unlikely places. We’ve had to order some new copies of this book, but it should be available for your reading pleasure shortly!

Hopefully you’ve found something to read while you enjoy the summer sun, but don’t forget the sunscreen!

Until next time,
R n R

Shoe love

What better way to enjoy the start of a new year and some long-awaited chill time than with… shoes! Some lush eye candy never goes astray, and it seems a shame not to indulge ourselves during the holiday period. Also, if you’re anything like me, your shoes are probably one of the few items of clothing that still fit properly following the Christmas festivities. Sigh.

So here goes! Shoe love. Enjoy.

The crucifix takes on yet another fashion form in these… creative heels.

And def can’t argue with the Jimmy Choos.

Or the Louboutins, for that matter.

I can never resist colourful heels

I have been lusting after some blinged-out gold sneakers lately.
These are pretty dang sweet, but am soooo in love with these Michael Kors. (hint hint!)

All photos from fashiongonerogue.com

Looking forward to:

The next installments in three hot series which will be released this year.

Scorched Earth, Robert Muchamore. The next in the Henderson’s Boys series, which is like CHERUB but with World War II thrown in for good measure. This is described as their final mission. We at the teen blog hope this is because they’re going to retire and sip mocktails in a hammock on an island somewhere, but there is a rumour this may not be true for one character. The official website is quite coy about giving away information.

The Indigo Spell, Richelle Mead. The third in the Bloodlines series, in which Sydney is in for a rough ride. “In the aftermath of a forbidden moment that rocked Sydney to her core, she finds herself struggling to draw the line between her Alchemist teachings and what her heart is urging her to do. Then she meets alluring, rebellious Marcus Finch – a former Alchemist who escaped against all odds, and is now on the run. Marcus wants to teach Sydney the secrets he claims the Alchemists are hiding from her. But as he pushes her to rebel against the people who raised her, Sydney finds that breaking free is harder than she thought. There is an old and mysterious magic rooted deeply within her. And as she searches for an evil magic user targeting powerful young witches, she realizes that her only hope is to embrace her magical blood – or else she might be next.” (goodreads.com)

Perfect Scoundrels, Ally Carter. The third Heist Society book, but what happens?? Well: “Katarina Bishop and W.W. Hale the fifth were born to lead completely different lives: Kat comes from a long, proud line of loveable criminal masterminds, while Hale is the scion of one of the most seemingly perfect dynasties in the world. If their families have one thing in common, it’s that they both know how to stay under the radar while getting – or stealing – whatever they want … When Hale unexpectedly inherits his grandmother’s billion dollar corporation, he quickly learns that there’s no place for Kat and their old heists in his new role. But Kat won’t let him go that easily, especially after she gets tipped off that his grandmother’s will might have been altered in an elaborate con to steal the company’s fortune. So instead of being the heir–this time, Hale might be the mark. Forced to keep a level head as she and her crew fight for one of their own, Kat comes up with an ambitious and far-reaching plan that only the Bishop family would dare attempt. To pull it off, Kat is prepared to do the impossible, but first, she has to decide if she’s willing to save her boyfriend’s company if it means losing the boy.” (goodreads.com)

Top 10: Book related 2013 movies

2013 should be another great year for movies. Rebecca and Rachel are looking forward to The Perks of Being a Wallflower (starring Emma Watson (Hermione) and also Nina Dobrev from The Vampire Diaries), which is one of many intriguing upcoming book-inspired films, like:

  1. Catching Fire – November (book / IMDB page). New cast additions include Sam Claflin (who is Finnick, and from Snow White and the Huntsman) and Jenna Malone (Johanna).
  2. Beautiful Creatures – February (book / IMDB page). Based on the book by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, in which Lena is the girl of Ethan’s dreams, literally. The film stars Alice Englert (trivia: she is the daughter of New Zealand director Jane Campion) and Alden Ehrenreich. They may soon become household names.
  3. City of Bones – August (book / IMDB page). The first film, and the first book in the Mortal Instruments series, which, if you haven’t read it already and mean to, you should reserve now! Starring Lily Collins, Jamie Campbell Bower and Godfrey Gao (as Magnus Bane).
  4. Iron Man 3 – April (graphic novels / IMDB page). IMDB says that Stan Lee might put in an appearance. We shall see!
  5. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug – December (book / IMDB page). Poor Smaug.
  6. Man of Steel – June (graphic novels / IMDB page). Starring Henry Cavill (Humphrey in Stardust, recommended recently by R and R – I agree, excellent sky pirate) and Russell Crowe as Jor-El (Amy Adams is Lois).
  7. Ender’s Game – October (book / IMDB page). Based on the über-popular book by Orson Scott Card, in which Ender Wiggin, genetically engineered genius, is sent to an elite school to train to save the earth from invasion by a (very) malignant alien race. NCEA seems not too bad now. The film stars Asa Butterfield (from Hugo) and Abigail Breslin (My Sister’s Keeper) and Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit). They’re also Marvel comics.
  8. The Great Gatsby – June (book / IMDB page). One of the 20th century’s enduring classics, written by F Scott Fitzgerald. Gatsby hosts great parties, but that’s all most people know about him. When Nick moves in next door, he’s keen to uncover the mystery, but becoming part of Gatsby’s world may reveal a dark side. Carey Mulligan, Leonardo DiCaprio star alongside Isla Fisher, who used to be on Home and Away.
  9. The Host – March (book / IMDB page). This is the other Stephenie Meyer novel, where she tries out Sci Fi. Wanderer (or Wanda for short) is an alien who inhabits bodies. When she’s given Melanie Stryder, she can’t quite take her over, and she’s drawn into Melanie’s world of free rebels fighting the alien invasion. Saorise Ronan is Wanda, and she’s also going to be busy in:
  10. How I Live Now – release date TBA (book / IMDB page). In the award-winning book by Meg Rosoff, New Yorker Daisy is sent to live in the English countryside, which seems like a major adjustment but the sudden onset of World War III puts that in perspective as Daisy battles to survive and find her family.

New year, new you?

Or so the saying goes. Have you made a list of resolutions yet? You know, that list that you start with such energy, but then sometime in March you take a day, a week, a month off from that exercise plan and suddenly it’s November and you’re struggling to remember what you wrote the year before. Ahem. Only I do that? Well, moving on then. This collection of gems is all about resolutions. These protagonists are on a mission of some sort or another, they have a goal and we get to watch as they achieve it (or don’t).

The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants, Ann Brasharesbook cover courtesy of Syndetics

We start with a lighthearted resolution. These four friends are on a mission to stay best friends as they each go their separate ways over the summer. And they’ve got a unique way of doing it. As the title rather hints at, they share a pair of pants. Each week, the pants pass from girl to girl with an accompanying letter of the adventures they had while wearing them. In this way the girls maintain their friendship throughout the events of their four very different summers. Spoiler alert: they complete their mission to stay friends (although there are three more books with the same mission and it gets harder as they get older) but more importantly, this is a beautiful coming of age story and well worth a read.

First lines: ‘Once upon a time there was a pair of pants. They were an essential kind of pants – jeans, naturally, blue but not that stiff, new blue that you see so often on the first day of school.

Small Steps, Louis Sacharbook cover courtesy of Syndetics

Have you read Holes? If you loved it, or even vaguely enjoyed it, then you’re sure to love Small Steps which follows Armpit (real name: Theodore) after his return from Camp Green Lake. He sets five goals for himself: 1. Graduate High School, 2. Get a job, 3. Save his money, 4. Avoid situations that might turn violent, and 5. Lose the name Armpit. In completing what he thought were five small steps, he finds himself in a situation he could never have imagined. With new friends and old, Armpit Theodore is on a mission to improve his life.

First line: ‘Once again Armpit was holding a shovel, only now he was getting paid for it, seven dollars and sixty-five cents an hour.

Recovery Road, Blake Nelsonbook cover courtesy of Syndetics

And on to the much more serious resolutions. Recovery Road is a teenage girl’s mission to get sober after her drinking and anger problems land her in rehab. So many books that take on these kind of massive issues have deeply unlikeable (read: whiny) protagonists. Maddie however is powerful and engaging, her story heartbreaking. Her mission to stay sober after she leaves rehab is constantly under threat, her world seems constantly on the point of unravelling but always, always I was wholeheartedly rooting for her. Also, Blake Nelson appears to like alliteration almost as much as we do. If you like this one then check out Paranoid Park as well.

First lines: ‘You can’t tell what Spring Meadow is from the road. The sign, nestled beneath a large oak tree, could be for a retirement village. It could be a bed-and-breakfast.

Before I Die, Jenny Downhambook cover courtesy of Syndetics

This one continues down the path of serious subject matter. Tessa has just months to live. Fighting back against hospital visits, endless tests, drugs with excruciating side-effects, Tessa compiles a list. It’s her To Do Before I Die list. And number one is Sex. Released from the constraints of ‘normal’ life, Tessa tastes new experiences to make her feel alive while her failing body struggles to keep up. Tessa’s feelings, her relationships with her father and brother, her estranged mother, her best friend, and her new boyfriend, all are painfully crystallised in the precious weeks before Tessa’s time finally runs out.

First lines: ‘I wish I had a boyfriend. I wish he lived in the wardrobe on a coat hanger. Whenever I wanted, I could get him out and he’d look at me the way boys do in films, as if I’m beautiful.

Cold Comfort Farm, Stella Gibbonsbook cover courtesy of Syndetics

For curiosity’s sake we’ve included this ‘historical’ novel in case anyone would like to give the very British humour a go. The sensible, sophisticated heroine Flora Poste is on a mission to help her eccentric relatives from, essentially, themselves. She descends upon them at the aptly named Cold Comfort Farm after she is left penniless by the death of her parents. Armed with common sense and a strong will, Flora resolves to take each family member in hand. She’s vivacious and witty making her quest and the story as a whole very funny to read. 

First lines: ‘The education bestowed on Flora Poste by her parents had been expensive, athletic and prolonged; and when they died within a few weeks of one another during the annual epidemic of the influenza or Spanish Plague which occurred in her twentieth year, she was discovered to possess every art and grace save that of earning her own living.

Take Me There, Susane Colasantibook cover courtesy of Syndetics

Based on the first line I would say this book is very much about improving oneself. With a (relatively, compared to the others on this list) lighthearted mission involved; to take a mean girl down a notch. It’s told from the perspective of three teenagers brought together by their mission and by all their respective break-ups. Cue three burgeoning love stories. The story takes place in one week, where many things will happen to the three friends including confessed secrets, messages on sidewalks, delivered flowers, a ton of photocopied notes, one awesome speech, and lots and lots of karma. It’s a quick and easy read about the trials of high school and growing up.

First line: ‘My life could not possibly suck more than it does right now.

An Abundance of Katherines, John Greenbook cover courtesy of Syndetics

More than anything, I picked up this book because of its cover. The story is pretty awesome as well. Colin’s on a mission to prove The Theorem of Underlying Katherine Predictability, which will predict the future of all relationships, transform him from a fading prodigy into a true genius, and finally win him the girl. Unfortunately, all he’s got so far is nineteen exes named Katherine. He’s also a washed-up child prodigy with ten thousand dollars in his pocket, a passion for anagrams, and an overweight, Judge Judy-obsessed best friend. Letting expectations go and allowing love in are at the heart of Colin’s hilarious quest to find his missing piece and avenge dumpees everywhere.

First line: ‘The morning after noted child prodigy Colin Singleton graduated from high school and got dumped for the nineteenth time by a girl named Katherine, he took a bath.

So now that you have some literary inspiration, go forth into the new year, confident in your own list of New Years resolutions! Whether you stick to them or not, 2013 is going to be awesome! Personally, we can’t wait for the New Zealand release of the film version of The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Let us know what you’re looking forward to this year in the comments section!

new year, new style

Wishing you a stylish (oh, and happy) new year! I hope your year is off to a fabulous (read: fashionable) start. If not, these sweet new, ultra-glamorous fashion books should help you out:

Syndetics book coverAlexander McQueen : evolution / by Katherine Gleason ; epilogue by Simon Collins.
“From Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims, his 1992 graduate collection, to Plato’s Atlantis, the last show before his death in 2010, Lee Alexander McQueen was as celebrated for the exquisite tailoring, meticulous craftsmanship, and stunning originality of his designs as he was notorious for his theatrical–and often controversial–runway shows. Every show had a narrative and was staged with his characteristic dramatic flair. Illustrated throughout with stunning photography and liberally sprinkled with quotations from McQueen and those who knew him best, Alexander McQueen: Evolution is the story of the designer’s thirty-five runway shows and the genius behind them” – Adapted from publisher’s web site.

Syndetics book coverStars in Dior / [texts, Jérôme Hanover ; preface, Serge Toubiana ; introduction, Florence Müller ; captions, Barbara Jeauffroy-Mairet and Vincent Leret].
“A love letter to the cinema from the House of Dior, featuring legendary screen actresses in signature Dior. Embraced by Hollywood and the iconic women who are its stars, the fashions of Christian Dior have been worn by the likes of Marlene Dietrich in Stage Fright, Lauren Bacall in How to Marry a Millionaire, Ava Gardner, Marilyn Monroe, Sophia Loren, Elizabeth Taylor and, more recently, Charlize Theron, Penélope Cruz, and Nicole Kidman. Well before the successes that were to propel Dior to the forefront of the fashion world, the master couturier put his talent to work as a costume designer for the cinema, collaborating with renowned filmmakers and creating timeless ensembles for legendary actresses. Combining fashion photography and rarely seen and never before published behind-the-scenes photographs, this gorgeously produced volume showcases Dior’s creations for film and the movie stars who brought them to life, and is a must for those who aspire to high style” – Adapted from publisher’s web site.

Syndetics book coverKate Moss / Kate Moss ; edited by Fabien Baron ; Jess Hallett & Jefferson Hack.
Created by Kate Moss herself, in collaboration with creative director Fabien Baron, Jess Hallett, and Jefferson Hack, this book is a highly personal retrospective of Kate Moss’s career, tracing her evolution from ‘new girl with potential’ to one of the most iconic models of all time.

Syndetics book coverThe king of style : dressing Michael Jackson / Michael Bush ; forward by John Branca.
“Dressing Michael Jackson is a fascinating look at the intersection of music and fashion, as well as an homage to Michael Jackson’s brilliant fusing of costume, personality, and performance to create his iconic image. This is the first art-driven book about the costumes, apparel, shoes, and accessories worn by Michael Jackson, including hundreds of lavish photographs and a behind-the-scenes look into the process of making his wardrobe, written by his long-time costume designer Michael Bush.” – Adapted from Books in Print.

Syndetics book coverBottega Veneta / edited by Tomas Maier.
“The first monograph on the luxury house Bottega Veneta, renowned for its superb craftsmanship and understated, no-logo elegance. Bottega Veneta’s illustrious history reaches back to a time when the brand was known primarily for its soft, handcrafted leather handbags. Today, the house is renowned not only for its coveted leather goods but also for a remarkable range of luxury products. This beautifully designed and slipcased monograph, the first book to explore the world of Bottega Veneta, is the rich result of a collaborative effort between creative director Tomas Maier, designer Sam Shahid, and many of today’s leading lights of fashion journalism. This is the ultimate volume for the true connoisseur of luxury handcraftsmanship.” – Adapted from publisher.

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Most Wanted: January 2013

Hello 2013! These are the ten most popular and reserved young adult titles, as requested by you, the discerning reader. The list features a John Green-athon, particularly starring Looking For Alaska, first published in 2005. We are slightly puzzled, but agree that it is a good read!

1. Guardian Angel, Robert Muchamore [no change]
2. Clockwork Princess, Cassandra Clare [up 3]
3. The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins [up 4]
3. 1D: One Direction: Forever Young [up 1]
5. The Fault in Our Stars, John Green [new yet somewhat old]
6. Reached, Ally Condie [down 4]
6. Mockingjay, Suzanne Collins [down 3]
8. Catching Fire, Suzanne Collins [up 1]
9. Looking for Alaska, John Green [new yet rather old]
10. Days of Blood & Starlight, Laini Taylor [down 2]

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