These books share a birthday week with yours truly! And although I don’t usually like to share the spotlight, I’m happy to hand over the balloons and birthday tiara to these seriously fantastic book babies.
The Mostly True Story of Jack by Kelly Regan Barnhill (8/2/11)
Jack’s spent his whole life being ignored. He doesn’t have any friends at school, and his parents seem to have better things to do. But then Jack’s parents get a divorce and he moves to Iowa for the summer to stay with an aunt and uncle. And for some reason, everyone in the small farming town knows who he is. Read just the sample of this on Amazon and I guarantee you’ll be hooked – Barnhill sets up the mystery beautifully. And I love the idea of stumbling into a town with a sinister secret. So many good horror movies start that way.
Dark Parties by Sara Grant (8/3/11)
I just love dystopians so much. This one has a cool premise – there was a big war and now the government has cracked down on individuality. Everyone lives under the “protectosphere,” which keeps society safe from the outside. But the gene pool under the protectosphere is limited, and people are disappearing and dying at an alarming rate. A rag tag band of revolutionaries deciding how much they’re willing to sacrifice for freedom become the focus of this novel, and the girls take center stage. Now I’m itching to draw a Punnett square.
Death Sentence: Escape From Furnace 3 by Alexander Gordon Smith (8/2/11)
I’ve been waiting for this book! I love the Furnace series. These books are horror at its best – terrifying, disgusting, edge-of-your-seat reads. After failing a second time to make it out of Furnance (not an overachiever, that Alex), Alex knows he’ll become one of the dark, twisted creatures of Furnace. Here’s hoping he makes it out in this book and the next one is about life outside, revolution, and revenge.
Epic Fail by Claire Lazebnik (8/2/11)
Will I ever get sick of Jane Austen updates? I’m thinking no. They’re just so darn loveable! Epic Fail is a Pride and Prejudice modernization, and it actually has all five sisters, which I’ve never seen before. The two oldest (Elise and Julie, rather than Elizabeth and Jane) attend a ritzy L.A. private school where Julie catches the eye of a hot, popular guy and Elise is forced to spend time with his haughty best friend. I mean, we all know where this is going. But I think the journey has potential – I can’t wait to see how Lazebnik updates each classic scene.
Want To Go Private? by Sarah Darer Littman (8/1/11)
Oh god, this book is SO disturbing. Mostly because you could picture someone you know falling prey to the internet predator described in Littman’s new novel. Abby is starting high school. She’s feels stressed, nervous, and misunderstood. She’s fighting with her family, and her best friend seems to be leaving her in the dust. One person does seem to care about her, though. His name is Luke, he’s 25, and he lives in Boston. Or so he says. As Abby and Luke grow closer and decide to meet, their relationship becomes increasingly dangerous – eventually, Abby goes missing. This plot is terrifying precisely because it’s so real – the emotions, the motivations, and the actions of the characters all ring true in the creepiest way possible.