Drum roll please…this morning I finished my first Book Expo galley.  It was Stork, a book by new author Wendy Delsol.  And it was really good.  Really, really good.  It had everything I look for in a YA book (magic and romance) and did that thing that’s required of all YA books–it twisted the formula just a bit.

Stork is the story of a girl–Kat–who moves from sunny California to windy, cold Minnesota after her parents divorce.  Her mother returns to the town where she grew up, and where her father–Kat’s grandfather–still lives.  A strange turn of events early on in the book result in Kat’s realization that she’s part of something much bigger than herself; she’s part of a sort-of-secret and magical sisterhood responsible for…well, I’ll let you figure that out.  The title is a huge hint.  Beyond that, there’s a mystery about Kat’s past to unravel, and a serious and mysterious romance.  I don’t want to give any more away, as I don’t know how much the actual back of the book will tell once the official copy is released.

This book is due out in October of this year, and I’m super psyched to have gotten my hands on an advance copy of this book.  I literally could not put it down.  The ending leaves open the possibility for a sequel, and I’m sure there will be one if the public has the same reaction as I did.  A fabulous first novel–bravo, Wendy Delsol.

Stay tuned for an in-depth discussion of the awesomeness of Book Expo America, as well as future reviews of books I acquired there.


This World We Live In

The third book in a loosely tied-together series, this book is great but depressing.  I read it in one day, and I was really busy that day, so that says a lot.  It began with Life as we Knew It, the story of a girl living in a small town in Pennsylvania (imagine that!) who’s world–along with everyone else’s– was literally knocked off balance when an asteroid hit the moon, shifting it closer to the earth.  This created all kinds of apocalyptic issues involving earthquakes and volcanoes and ash clouds and famine and drought.  In general it was a real downer of a plot, but with a great character-driven story.

The second book, The Dead and the Gone, took place at the same time but focused on the life of a young boy living in New York City.  I can only recommend the second book based on the need to read it before the third–the second book was beyond depressing.  But again, it was told so well that you almost didn’t notice.  Almost.  Except that you did.  Feel free to visit my reviews of both on this very blog to learn more about them.

This World We Live In brought both stories together, and the result was greater than the sum of its parts.  The main boy character from the second book enters the life of the girl from the first, and both stories are (sort of) resolved; both are magnified.  This is a fantastic book.  If you’ve not read any of them, start at the beginning and don’t stop until you are done.  They are all page turners, so it won’t take you very long.

You Are What You Read

I’ve not posted on here in a while, and I thought I owed an explanation to my few readers out there.  You see, I’ve not read any good young adult lit in a while.  This is not because I don’t have any good young adult lit–it is because I’m reading so many other books, I’d have to learn to read in my sleep in order to fit any more reading it.

I’ve been reading mostly nonfiction, mainly in the form of travel books.  Right now, sitting at my desk at home, there are eight books piled up to my left, and the way they are piled is very telling–see picture left.  On the bottom are two of the Pretty Little Liars books that I really do want to finish (before the tv series starts this summer), and piled up on top of those are five travel books, with a phrase book I flip through for a few minutes every day.  In addition to that, I have, on my Kindle, an entire home page worth of books that I want to read before and during my upcoming trip–novels and memoirs that take place in the countries and cities I will be visiting this summer.

There’s an important lesson in that.  You see, everything in life has a shelf in the library already devoted to it, and I never do anything without first consulting that shelf.  I have dozens of books on religions I wanted to learn about when I was younger, dozens of cookbooks collected during the learning to cook phase of my life, countless books on gardening from recent years–turning around in my chair I see ‘Great Garden Companions’ on the shelf behind me.  I have books on writing and books on teaching.  A glance through my personal library will tell you who I have been and who I am.  One might even predict what I may become (answer–someone with WAY too many books!)