Happy Monday! How was your weekend? Mine was pretty great. I got a gate put up across my driveway so my dog could come home from her extended sleepover vacation at my sister’s houses. This means freedom for both of us! She gets to hang out endlessly sniffing the yard and rolling in the grass (her two favorite things) and I don’t have to watch her (it’s not very interesting to watch). I read a good chunk of Supernaturally by Kiersten White. I love it, which makes my decision to savor it rather than devour it in one sitting difficult, but it just had to be done. I will have a review this week, but if you are looking for a funny, romantic, action-packed, fashion-forward, paranormal adventure check out Paranormalcy and it’s sequel, Supernaturally by Kiersten White. Hang on, I am getting off topic here. Actually, I haven’t even gotten around to introducing the topic: Debut authors of 2011, or The Elevensies as they call themselves. I have only read 11 YA debut authors so far this year, but I have done a great job (if I do say so myself) of writing reviews. First, three quick reviews that I haven’t gotten around to yet:
Forgotten by Cat Patrick
London Lane cannot remember the past, but she can see the future. A traumatic event in her past causes her mind to reset each night, erasing the events of the day. When disturbing visions plague her dreams, London begins searching for the truth about her past. The arrival of a new student, the handsome and friendly Luke Henry, only complicates London’s life further as she struggles to date a guy she can’t remember.
This unique debut novel contains equal parts mystery, romance, and psychological drama. This suspenseful page-turner is unforgettable. Give this one to fans of Lisa McMann’s Wake trilogy, Laurie Faria Stolarz’s Touch series or Kimberly Derting’s The Body Finder series.
Rival by Sarah Bennett-Wealer
Brooke and Kathryn are best friends-turned-rivals after a misunderstanding leads to a physical altercation. Now, Kathryn is the school outcast, but Brooke no longer gets pleasure from tormenting her former friend. The stakes are high as the girls prepare to face off at the prestigious Blackmore singing competition. First prize is a ticket out for the winner, and both girls crave a new beginning.
This debut novel, told in alternating voices, offers readers a look at both sides of the rival story. The mean girl who wants to change, the shy girl who finds confidence, and the huge singing competition that could change their lives forever all combine in this touching work of contemporary realistic fiction. Fans of Glee will love the music aspect of the story.
The Pull of Gravity by Gae Polsiner
Nick’s family life is a mess and his best friend, Scooter, is dying of a rare genetic disease. The Scoot’s final wish involves Nick, a quirky girl named Jaycee, a signed first edition copy of Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men, and an unforgettable road trip. Scoot’s wish is that Nick and Jaycee find the father the abandoned him, but left him the valuable book. With little to go on the pair sets out on the journey of a lifetime. Guided by Steinbeck and Yoda, Nick and Jaycee embark on their quest. However, just as Burns wrote in the poem that inspired the novel, “The best laid plans of mice and men oft times go astray.”
While the actual quest is predictable and unrealistic, the characters are unforgettable. This novel offers a unique blend of classic literature and popular culture. Steinbeck and Yoda meet to provide readers with a heartbreaking and humorous look at life, loss, death, grief, and friendship. This short novel packs in lots of teachable moments without being preachy. Fans of Star Wars will appreciate all of the references. For further “quest” reading try How to Be Bad by E. Lockhart, The Miles Between by Mary Pearson or An Abundance of Katherines by John Green.
Woo-hoo! I am on a roll! All of my Elevensies reads have now been reviewed. Here’s a little stroll down memory lane for the rest of them:
Here Lies Bridget by Paige Harbison
Girl Wonder by Alexa Martin
Blood Red Road by Miora Young
The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter
Clarity by Kim Harrington
Divergent by Veronica Roth
Wither by Lauren DeStefano
The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab
My favorites so far? Divergent, Blood Red Road and Forgotten are must reads!