Grief Girl by Erin Vincent
A blog for the members of the 2008 MLA Thumbs Up! Award Committee to discuss the books we are considering.
This graphic novel is part of a series each with a different vision of the Louvre museum. It takes place far in the future when ice has long covered the museum. A group of explorers discover the buried artifacts and try to make sense of them. Their interpretations are nonsense and farcical. The art work was OK with many master works in the background. I think most teens will have a hard time relating to this book. Nay for me.
I may be jumping the gun here, but a teen pressed the Razorbill (Penguin's cutesy new teen imprint) ARC into my hands and said "you must read this." If its not on the list I think we should consider it. Basically, its a whole lot of awesome.
Ambergate is Patricia Elliot's pretty good fantasy sequel to the novel Murkmere. British readers might pick out that Ambergate is located in a fantasy version of England, and the novel is definitely a Dickensian fantasy with character names like Scuff and Titus Molde.
I have to admit I am a going to be bias with this author, I love her work. This book was a very quick read and very teen appealing.
14-year-old Sophie, a Cambridge, Massachusetts, teen, describes her surprise when she is drawn to Robin, the school-appointed loser who makes her laugh. In this sequel, Robin picks up the narrative in rapid-fire, first-person free verse as he describes their school's reaction to the relationship: "They're gawking at us / like Sophie's Beauty and I'm the Beast." Sophie compares the two to outlaws: "It's just you and me against the world." But after Sophie's friends dump her, Robin feels guilty for the "random acts of unkindness" she endures: "Sophie may feel like an outlaw, / but thanks to yours truly, / what she really is / is an outcast." A talented artist, Robin finds escape in a Harvard drawing class, where a new friendship threatens his closeness with Sophie.
Great books, I give it a Yah! : )
Aba's mom deserted her and her dad a year ago. Dad has done nothing but sit on the couch ever since. A Big Sister comes into her life and Aba meets a guy who has a son and befriends them both. I wasn't thrilled with this book. it took me a while to get into it. It just meandered along. I didn't like Aba too much, especially how she treated the Big Sister. She did grow as a character by the end, but I'd give it a NAY
Stan Smith, by some people considered a genius, has graduated from high school, but he is working at a video store and has no plans for college. Stan narrates this fairly funny story with an incredibly sarcastic outlook. I enjoyed it to a certain extent but there is not much depth here and the constant snarkiness got a bit old. Decent book, but I'd say NAY.
I hope this doesn't make me a bad librarian, but I've never read any other "Alice" Books. As a result, the first half of this novel was pretty rough on me. Naylor doesn't provide much, if any, description of her character other than "African American" and "braces". Alice has friends, and then she has frenemies, her family, the cancer kid, the mentally impaired kid, and then there are the boys Alice knows and has or has not dated. I feel like a need a crib sheet with all the past happenings that fills these characters in for me. Alice, like all awkward teens in novels dealing with school social scenes, dwells on her frenemies, who refer to her as DD and MGT. I don't think teens today would ever actually use the phrase, "Dry as Dust".
God of Mischief by Paul Bajoria is a novel that feels like it appeals to a young audience, despite some grisly aspects of the story. I found myself lacking sympathy for the orphan heroes who feel thrown together in a plot full of unrelentingly boring and rather gross perils. The female narrator lacked emotional depth. Nay.
15-year old Meredith learns that three years in prison has not changed the abusive father who raped her. Now he is getting out and coming home. Meredith wants to run away, but she can't leave her father free to abuse other children. I couldn't put this one down. It is a well written, suspenseful and disturbing read. I give it a yay.