Smackdown Books 2018

Wolf Hollow
Salt to the Sea
The Serpent King
Optimists Die First
The Hate U Give
Orphan Island
Dan vs. Nature
The Female of the Species
Upside Down in the Middle of Nowhere
Paper Girls, Vol. 1
The Passion of Dolssa
The Distance Between Us
When We Collided
Louis parmi les spectres
Girl in the Blue Coat
Defy the Stars

Monday, December 17, 2012

We Liked Them Both!!

Keep reading if you are looking for some good reads! We are not picking from the best of the worst but genuinely liked both books. We will start with Bill Wright's book Putting Makeup on the Fat Boy.  

Dia:  I thought this book was a nice light snack. A perfect holiday book that makes you cheer for the main character. Carlos is a high school makeup artist who longs for the day when he will rise above to his position of makeup artisit to the stars. He begins to get his foot on the ladder when he gets the opportunity to work at a New York department store makeup counter. His sexuality is a matter of fact plot point and not the center of the story. It is how Carlos lives his life too and it is up to those around him to choose to be his friend, co-worker and family based on other more important personality points. 

Annabel: So, I finished the makeup book and to be honest it is more my type of book. I felt it addressed topics like homosexuality, homophobia, abuse, individual appearance, relationships etc which are important to be discussed but it did this in a very natural way and without coming to a 'neat and tidy' conclusion.  I was also very absorbed in Carlos' desire to make it big and I really felt this was the plot line which was front and centre.  But, I would suggest this is more of a high school book and probably a holiday book at that too, I whipped through it and thoroughly enjoyed it and I think high school teens looking for a 'non sensationalist' good read would love it. I think for some it would provide valuable characters to identify with. 

Now onto Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater:

Annabel: I have not finished Raven Boys and it is not the type of book I generally enjoy.  However, I think that it is appealing. I like the creepiness of it and I also like all the different characters although I don't think I am supposed to like them!  In the first half of the book I feel like I have not got enough of a grasp on the 'quest' I think the two groups will be engaging in but I do feel like this is a plot with a lot of background info needed.  I think it is a stand out in its genre as I think there is a lot of cleverness to it, which leads me to wonder if your average junior high reader would persevere with it?  The characters are also clearly junior high age and i wonder if that perhaps also limits the appeal to younger readers?  This is a tough choice for me as my heart leads me to the Makeup book as I feel it is important to adolescent literature but I see the potential in Raven Boys and I know I personally struggle with the type of book Raven Boys is, I also feel bad that I have not yet finished it...!  

Dia: I read her previous book Scorpio Races and loved it so was quite excited to read this one next. Raven Boys also has Welch mythology in it but is placed in Virgina and follows the story of Blue. Blue is the daughter of a psychic and all of the psychic's in her life (and there are a lot of them) have predicted that Blue will cause her true love to die if she ever kisses them. So no hanky panky. Sounds like a fun spooky romp eh? It's actually pretty freaky. I can usually whip through most YA titles but this was slow going because Annabel is right you don't get much information as the book chugs along and I couldn't seem to make myself read was like I was creeping around reading corners cautiously but I never wanted to stop.In the book time is manipulated and freak alert here - I felt like that when I was reading.  As the book moves along and reveals more the creep factor continues and Blue begins to join the Raven Boys (boy's private school nickname) as they search for a myth who can promise them the world. I'll tell you this people - when the sequel comes out clear my calendar...I'll have more cautious reading ahead.  What moves on? Duh! Anything that slows me down and keeps me reading - Raven Boys.


  1. In my words about Raven Boys I intended to write that the characters are clearly HIGH school age not junior high age! In the novel they are able to drive and attend high school which leads me to my conclusion about their age. Please put my mistake down to the lack of sleep that results from looking after my 7week old and 2 year old!

  2. The jury's still out. I was not a fan of Scorpio Races but did really enjoy "Shiver" so I was looking forward to "Raven Boys". I'm about a third of the way through and I'm liking it but not loving it.

  3. I've just started getting into Raven Boys and am loving it so far. I love the creepiness and really hope that the novel is able to keep it up. And, you know, as long as the villain doesn't turn out to be a murderous school desk or anything like that.