I love it when our nondescript little beige book carts come rumbling across the tile floor above my head (on the second floor) and I hear the elevator grumble to life and move from one floor to the other (and depending where it is, back down again). Then I watch from my Spying Window (I don't really spy. I promise. I just peek sometimes to see who's out there) as the cart and its person come around the corner to visit me.
Sometimes, much to my despair, I get a nice present of books from the book drop to shelve. Ugh.
Other days (and this is more likely), I get a cart of shiny new books to play with.
Today the cart came down and I got a cart of all shiny new YA books just for you (and, well...me).
So I put in the Accelerated Reader stickers inside the front cover, upper right hand corner, to tell you all what the reading level is and how many points you get if you pass the test (and you can take your tests this summer if you go to Wabash City Schools). And I mark it off the lists of all the books we have ordered, so we know what has come.
And I check them in.
After that, I get to read them--some of them; I could never read them all. There are just too many. You think there aren't, but you have to consider that some are part of many-book series(es?) and I would have to read all those too...and realistically, that doesn't happen. I say it will, but it doesn't.
I get caught up making folded paper star lanterns and just lose track of time. I hope those will be done someday...
Well. Back to the point--today, one of our Upstairs People came down and gave me the cart, and now I'm telling you all about it.
Sarah Dessen fans, we now have Lock and Key.
Sarah Dessen's novels are one of my cousin Cassie's favorites (she lives in Colorado, so they have to be cool because Colorado is such a cool state--right?)
Cassie also loves Meg Cabot, and I bring you Airhead, the first book in a series.
And I just got a series that's one of my faves, The Tales of the Otori by Lian Hearn. I got books 1-3 and if you like them, I'll get the two others.
These books are set in feudal Japan, and follow Takeo as he flees from his village, now destroyed, into the protection of Lord Otori Shigeru who trains him to embrace innate skills that set him apart from the world he grew up in, and place him alongside other members of the cryptic Tribe his father belonged to.
As he learns to cross the nightingale floor without making a sound, he discovers more about his past and the father he never knew.
There are also guys who look good but are evil, guys who look evil and are evil-er, and creepy ladies who use poison like Lord Otori uses his sword. Think Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon without all the flying. Which was cool, though not realistic...
On another note entirely, we have the first of the series Maggie Quinn: Girl vs. Evil, Prom Dates from Hell. Following the trend of vampires, werewolves, and Things In-Between, it's a rather comic view of soul-crushing evil similar to Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
I don't know how the puns are yet, I'll let you know. And if you don't know what I'm talking about, watch some Buffy and come back. Not the movie. The Joss Whedon stuff. That's the TV series. I'm not that old, you guys should know this stuff. Come on, work with me. Alanis! X-Files! Dawson's Creek! It's the 90's, folks!
We also have Beige, by Cecil Castellucci, the chronicles of Katy as she endures two weeks exiled in LA with her punk rock star dad, the Rat, and his band, Suck.
Red Glass by Laura Resau, the story of Sophie's family and six-year-old Pablo found lost and dehydrated after a trip over the Mexican/Arizona border, carrying only Sophie's stepfather's business card and all alone.
Oh, and there's Something Rotten in the state of Denmark. Or, well, Denmark, Tennessee. In this retelling of Hamlet, part of the new Horatio Wilkes mystery series, Horatio has to do his best to solve the murder of his friend's father, Rex Prince. His friend? Hamilton Prince, of course. Alan Gratz's film-noir inspired remake of Shakespeare's classic is sure to erase your bad memories of high school English class.
Don't worry, I think Horatio makes it. Can't promise anything with the other characters, though.
Also, we have the sequel to The Ropemaker, a past Printz Award-winner, Angel Isle by Peter Dickinson. I'm reading The Ropemaker right now...I'll let you know.
And we have Lisa McMann's Wake, with Janie and her peculiar talent--curse? Every night, Janie is sucked into other people's dreams. And it's getting old, very old. But then she ends up in a horrible nightmare, one she can't get out of, one that Janie's not just witnessing; she's a participant. And it could be the last dream she ever sees...
In Sweethearts by Sara Zarr, childhood friends Jennifer and Cameron were outcasts and each other's only friends. Cameron disappears without any warning, and Jennifer feels forgotten, alone. In high school, Jennifer is now Jenna, popular, dating, and completely transformed. Cameron suddenly reappears, and both are confronted by the people they used to be and the friendship they once shared.
And bringing up the position of last, but not least, in our long list of books is Deadline by Chris Crutcher.
Ben Wolf has a year to live, and he knows it. So he's decided to go out in a blaze of glory, never telling anyone he's ill, giving his teachers nervous breakdowns, trying out for sports, and going for the girl of his dreams. If his senior year has to be his last' he's going to make it a good one.