Welcome to the latest edition of my recurring Reviews that Made Me Want to Read the Book feature (not a catchy name, but sufficiently descriptive).
Tanita Davis from Finding Wonderland caught my attention by reviewing a book I hadn't seen before in parallel with one of my favorite recent novels. After discussing Julie Bertagna's Exodus, Tanita observed: "Apparently, Glasgow is a good city in which to set a dystopian end-of-days kind of story. Catherine Forde's Tug of War is a MG title which hearkens back to WWII, when refugee children were sent away from large cities, often with only a label around their necks, identifying them by name." I skimmed the rest, because I didn't want any spoilers, but this one is now high on my list. And I love the new term that Tanita coined, Glaswegian Dystopia.
Karen / Euro Crime from Teenage Fiction for All Ages did the same thing that Tanita did - caught my attention through drawing a parallel between a book that I'd read and a book that I hadn't read. Specifically, she wrote about two dystopias in which people over the age of 14 are in trouble. The first is Michael Grant's Gone (reviewed here), and the second is Charlie Higson's The Enemy (due out in September). According to the publisher's description: The Enemy "is set in an eerie, modern-day London after a mystery illness attacks everyone over the age of fourteen. Those afflicted either die or become so crazed by disease they are little more than wild animals. Gangs of kids are left to fend for themselves, dodging the zombie adults who remain." Which sounds potentially intriguing. Plus, I like Higson's Young James Bond books (first one reviewed here).
Over at Kidliterate, Melissa reviewed The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan. Honestly, it's a great title - that alone might be sufficient. But Melissa said: "... what I’m looking for is something different, something clever, something daring. This is why THE DEMON’S LEXICON works for me. It’s more of a family drama, where a mother driven mad keeps all the family secrets, and brothers Nick and Alan divide the meager scraps of her affection as they seek to protect her. They live in a darker reality than ours, where magicians use demons to work their magic, and these magicians have been pursuing their family since their father’s death." Intriguing... [Note: The Spectacle happens to be having a contest to win a copy of this book. Enter by July 20th.]
Melissa also piqued my interest with her very short description of a book by Andy Briggs, Hero.com: Rise of the Heroes. She say: "It is about kids who figure out how to download superpowers on the internet." Melissa states that this description is all that's necessary "to make this book walk out of your store by the pile (or create a huge waiting list for it in your library)". And I believe her. But I do feel compelled to check it out for myself.
I'm not generally much of a book cover person. However, I do find the cover of Laurie Halse Anderson's new picture book, The Hair of Zoe Fleefenbacher Goes to School, irresistible. Kristine reviewed it at Best Book I Have Not Read, saying "I think kids (especially kindergartners and first graders) will find The Hair of Zoe very funny. It would be a good first week of school book when some students are apprehensive about their teacher." I'd like to give it a look.
Shelf Elf drew me in from the very first words of this review: "Spooky and summer go so well together, don’t you think? If you’re in the mood for a thriller to sink into while lounging on the dock, I can’t think of a better recommendation than Tim Wynne Jones’ latest, The Uninvited. Sure to spook your socks off, the story captivates in true Tim Wynne Jones style." I agree about summer and spooky books, so this one is going on my list. I'm also embarrassed to admit that I haven't read any of Tim Wynne-Jones' books yet, so this would be a good place to start.
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