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

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Glory wins... insert pun here.

I have read, and enjoyed, three titles by A. S. King, though I see a clearly discernible pattern in the themes of these works; it would seem that moody, introspective stories sell.  To be fair, one could level similar criticisms against others in young-adult genre -- chief amongst them, John Green -- but perhaps this represents the genesis of author-loyalty for our students; after all, I'd read a take-out menu if Vonnegut wrote it.  Nonetheless, my colleagues at DDM and I agree that young 'Glory' is well-conceived and deftly hits on bona fide themes that will appeal to young readers.

Which is not to say that Famous Last Words, by Katie Alender, was without virtue; I can enjoy a pulp as much as the next guy.  If one can contrive a healthy dose of obliviousness in the face of Reed's constant presence, which has no apparent function beyond sledgehammer foreshadowing, this is a fun story, stylistically in-keeping with the story's mien; an homage to film noir of the era?

Hat's-off to A. S. King for a good read, but me thinks the game is afoot, and the next round will not be won so easily.


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