Monday, March 15, 2010

New Books Again

We have a lovely new stack of brand new, shiny-looking books for me to put out for all of your reading pleasure.

And, let's face it, for my reading pleasure. I read. A lot. The people I know will confirm that.

Heist Society from Ally Carter, the author of the Gallagher Girls novels...

I read it, I loved it, and you all ought to read it too. It's like Mission Impossible only with thieves...

The third Cathy book, Cathy's Ring...

Which I was very much looking forward to. It's jumped to the front of my reading list. I love the integration of art in these books, it always makes me pull out my sketch pad so that I can draw badly for several days, until I finally realize I put the sketch pad away for a reason, and it wasn't because I ran out of charcoal.

And, of course, if you don't use dial-up, you can always go here to take a peek at some of the illustrations...

Eternal by Cynthia Leitich Smith...

Guardian angel, evil vampire king, high school theater wannabe, need I say more?

The much-talked-of Scarlett Fever.

I say much-talked-of because I've talked a lot about it. Here, to my friends and family, to people who don't really even know me...This is a great book. Somehow, Maureen Johnson managed to make her sequel to Suite Scarlett even better than the original! And I loved that book.

James Kennedy's The Order of the Odd Fish...

In this book there are actual knights who research useless information. That should be me. I am like the queen of useless information. How else would I know how you make a Bloomin' Onion when I've never actually tried to make one, worked at Outback Steakhouse, or been taught. I know because I read about it. But I don't have a deep-fryer at home. So no Bloomin' Onions. Still, if you're interested, send me a note. I'll clue you in.

Wherever Nina Lies by Lynn Weingarten...

When Ellie's older sister Nina vanishes, Ellie spends the next two years wondering where she could have gone. When everyone else has given up, Ellie keeps hoping. She knows her sister is out there somewhere. When Ellie finds a drawing that she thinks is a clue to her sister's location, she takes off on a road trip with her crush in an effort to find Nina.

Quaking by Kathryn Erskine...

Matt (who never goes by Matilda), never lets anyone get close. Everything changes when she finds a new home with a Quaker family. The wars in the middle east are mirrored in Matt's struggles to free herself from her painful past. As she learns to stand up for her beliefs, her new family is threatened. She must stand up to her fears before she can find the peace she's been seeking.

We also have Printz Honor Books The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancey and Tales of the Madman Underground by John Barnes, both of which are amazing.

The Monstrumologist is the diary of Will Henry, orphan and assistant to Dr. Pellinore Warthrope, who studies monsters the way some might study anatomy or zoology. One evening in 1888--think Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus--a grave robber arrives with their most horrifying case to date...

Gothic horror at its finest.

Tales of the Madman Underground opens on Wednesday, September 5, 1973.

My impression so far (on page 30), is that this novel is very Catcher in the Rye-esque. Karl Shoemaker must make it through his senior year, escape Lightsburg, Ohio, hold down five jobs, care for his "seriously unhinged drunk mother", endure his litter-box of a house, and try to end his membership in the Madman Underground, a group of kids forced to attend group therapy during school hours, for reasons that escape Karl's understanding.

His goal for the school year? "Get up and be normal. Just for today" (pg 3).

Let's see how that works out for him.

And last but certainly not least, Printz Award Winner Going Bovine by Libba Bray.

Poor Cameron just got some bad news. He just wants to get finished with high school. With as little effort as possible. Except he can't do that, because he's going to die.

But just as he's about to collapse into a miserable ball, reveling in the waste that is his life, loopy, punk-angel/hallucination Dulcie comes along telling him that if he can just give her enough sugar--oh, wait--if he can just go out and get it, there's a cure.

This is good news.

So Cam grabs Gonzo, a death-obsessed Gamer dwarf and Viking god/yard gnome Balder and sets off on a road trip meeting up with happiness cults who chug smoothies, physicists who jump between parallel universes so often, they can't remember which one they started out in, mythic jazz musicians in New Orleans, television game shows, snow globe-addicts, and fame-obsessed teens. Here's a little blurb, "From New York Times bestselling author Libba Bray comes a dark comedic journey that poses the questions: Why are we here? What is real? What makes microwave popcorn taste so good? Why must we die? And how do we really learn to live?"

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