Monday, May 25, 2015

Mental Preparation Will Be Amy's Downfall

I could actually really like the second book but it wasn't the one I planned to talk about! Also, everyone should read The Raven Boys. Always.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Alex Is Reading...MAGONIA

Maria Dahvana Headley's Magonia isn't exactly the book you think it's going to be. When it starts off, its protagonist is on the verge of dying from a mysterious respiratory illness that has plagued her for her entire life. All right, you think. Here goes another acerbic, wonderful dying teen girl, leaving behind her grieving best friend, and his analytical genius mind, and his tendency to recite pi when he's upset.

Okay, so that already sounds like some darn good writing in the sick teens genre. The thing is, that is not the whole story. The rest of the story is the explanation for this setup: that Aza Ray, seemingly unsuited to the basic facts of life on Earth, isn't strictly speaking of the Earth. That while she wheezes through hospital visits, ships fill the skies invisible to humankind, and birds who sing heart-songs live in people's chests. That while she waits for the day she will die (too young), shapeshifters and flying cities and missing mothers and brutal politics close in. They are coming to rip Aza Ray out of the only world she remembers, into one where she is told that she belongs.

Magonia is a brand-new book, inventive, soaring, and unique, and definitely one to check out.


1. Stardust by Neil Gaiman

Boy crosses forbidden wall in normal English village; nine months later, boy is left with a baby. Some years after that, the baby goes back across the wall to catch a fallen star for the girl he thinks is the love of his life. Instead he finds out the the star is a (very interesting) person, gets in a lot of trouble at the hands of greedy witches and power-hungry princes, and discovers that his birthright has been on that side of the wall all along...

2. Seraphina by Rachel Hartman

Seraphina has been hiding her half-dragon heritage for her entire life. That has meant hiding herself. But her music is beginning to draw her into the limelight, dragon-human politics are becoming increasingly tense, and Seraphina has just learned that she and other half-dragons can find each other telepathically. Soon Seraphina may have to take a stand--where everyone can see it. The long-long-long anticipated sequel to this one just came out, and you'll be glad you don't have to wait.

3. A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray

After Gemma Doyle's mother is murdered, Gemma is sent packing from India to attend her mother's old boarding school. The only saving grace of the school, aside from Gemma's few friends, is a magical discovery: a haunting other world where they have the power to make everything they dream of real. But they're not the only people who know about this magical country--and some of what lurks there is deadly and heartless.

4. Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin

The first thing that happens is that Elizabeth Marie Hall dies in a car crash. Then, the story begins: Liz arrives in a strange, quiet place--not quite heaven, not hell, just...elsewhere. As she adjusts to life after death, her family grieves her in their life after her death. Will any of them be able to let go? Surprisingly, Elsewhere isn't a devastating book--it's thoughtful, original, and about learning to look for what comes next.

5. The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman

Impetuous Lyra has grown up sheltered by Oxford's many walls, with only herself and Pan, the animal embodiment of her soul, for company. But thanks to the machinations of distant parents and heartless strangers, she is thrust into a world of witches, portals, armored bears, missing children, and cruel plots that could forever twist her world into an ugly, death-filled place.


So those are my recommendations for if you want to get your head into the clouds instead of out of them. None of them are entirely safe, but they're sure to be exhilarating. Happy reading!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

May Television Inspired Lit

Summer is quickly approaching. For those of us who watch television shows weekly (read: not on Netflix), we're going to be losing our favorite Wednesday night activity. Luckily, we've got some books that will give us our fill of demon butt-kicking! 

If you like Supernatural, try these titles:

Monday, May 11, 2015

Everyone Does Things Their Own Way

There's something fitting about the fact that the eraser decided to chew on this particular strip.