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Saturday, July 27, 2013

My Birthday: Some of my Favorite Books

And now for a totally self-indulgent day! It's my birthday, so here's a list of some of my most favorite YA books. It's by no means complete, but it's a start.

    

Two Moons in August by Martha Brooks. One of my most favorite books of all time. After her mother died last summer, Sidonie's family fragmented--her sister went off to Uni and her father threw himself into his work. This summer, she tries to bring them back together, while also letting herself open up to the new boy across the street.

Nation by Terry Prachett. Mau's entire island village is destroyed by tsunami. He's the only one left until he comes across Daphne, a white girl shipwrecked on his island by the same deadly wave. Together they find a way to survive and move on from the tragedy, while still examining the greater questions of life. Prachett is one of my favorite authors, and this was the first of his books that I ever read.

Heist Society by Ally Carter. When a group of paintings is stolen, there's only one suspect, Kat's father. The only way to save him is to find the paintings and steal them back. Kat's been raised in a family of art thieves, but this time she's in charge with her own crew, and they're about to pull of the most daring heist in history. The start of a series, you'll want to read Uncommon Criminals next.

    

Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging: Confessions of Georgia Nicolson by Louise Rennison. While Georgia is mainly preoccupied with her love life, readers will fall in love with her insane cat, mad toddler sister, crazy parents, and the Bison dancing of the Ace Gang. This book is guarenteed to change your vocabulary forever it doesn't matter where you live--Old Blighty or Hamburger-a-go-go-land. The books pick up mere seconds after the previous book in the series, so be sure to have On the Bright Side, I'm Now the Girlfriend of a Sex God on hand.

Feeling Sorry for Celia by Jacyln Moriarty. Elizabeth has problems. Her best friend, Celia, is missing. Her father's moved back to Australia from Canada. To top it all off, the new English teacher wants the Internet Generation to rediscover the JOY OF THE ENVELOPE and is making the students at Ashbury (posh private school) become penpals with students at Brookfield (public school a few blocks away.) This is told entirely in letters although not always from real people. The first in a series of companion novels, the second is The Year of Secret Assignments.

Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh. Mark Renton and his friends are junkies without a future. Told in scenes and vignettes (the movie has much more of a plot than the book) this is a mind-opening book about modern Scottish life with the wrong crowd. Published for adults, the heavy dialect and adult language make this one for mature readers, but it's been a favorite of mine since high school.

    

A Spy in the House by Y. S. Lee. Sentenced to hang at the age of 12, Mary is rescued by Miss Scrimshaw's school for girls. Upon graduation, she's recruited into their secret-- a spy ring made of women, because in Victorian London, a woman who knows her place is in the perfect place to learn everything. Lee's a master at working in the details of daily life and the city, without it ever overwhelming the story. The first in a series, follow it with The Body at the Tower.

Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta. After the days of the unspeakable, Seranonna curses Lumatere, and its exiles are left to find each other and try to find a way home, never knowing if there's a home to find their way back to. Finnikin roams the countryside, checking on the refugees, trying to find them a new home, but then he hears the name of the heir to the throne and has hope that maybe they can go back home, so he finds a novice that will guide them. The second in the trilogy is Froi of the Exiles.

Soulless by Gail Carriger. Alexia Tarabotti is a half-Italian blue-stocking spinster in Victorian London. Every knows that. What not every knows is that she has no soul. In a London teeming with vampires, werewolves, and ghosts, Alexia can turn them mortal with a mere touch. But lately, random vampires are attacking her, and others have disappeared. They're after Alexia, too, but only if she doesn't find them first. The first in a delightful series, follow it with Changeless.

For some of my other favorites, check out my list for Drop Everything and Read Day. What are your favorite YA books?

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