Catherynne Valente (w), Ana Juan (a)
Feiwel & Friends
March 3, 2015
The Fairyland series continues! Thankfully. I thought it was over after The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two. Valente’s writing inspires envy in me. Her description of food and colors is vivid…and mouthwatering. I have a clear vision in my mind of Fairyland and its creatures which is only enhanced by Juan’s whimsical illustrations. I love how Valente brings life and imagination to the seemingly ordinary–it becomes infused with magic and mystery, and I do things like look at my toaster differently. Am I gushing? Well, it’s for good reason. Valente’s writing is inspired. She is obviously well-versed in storytelling and mythology, and she equally honors it and plays around with it in her books.
Carrie Anne Noble
March 1, 2015
This is the release of the paperback, not a new new release, but how did I not hear of this book before? The Mermaid’s Sister won the 2014 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award, and is the story of Clara and Maren, two sisters who live with their Auntie on Llanfair Mountain. One day Clara notices scales developing under Maren’s skin and realizes that the fairy tales Auntie has told them – always with their names and the name of their best friend O’Neill in place as the protagonists–are real, and now she and O’Neill must save Maren, for no mermaid can survive on land. Their journey to the sea is interrupted with evil traveling performers, and along the way, Clara begins to wonder about her own background.
Balzer & Bray
March 3, 2015
Finn knows something horrible has happened to Roza. But no one will believe him. Not his perpetually angry brother, who gave up his career in medicine to take care of him, not Charlie, the eccentric chicken lover from across the way, not a single person in their town. All of which sounds incredibly intriguing, but most intriguing of all in the town itself. Bone Gap is not your average, sleepy, small town. It’s a town “full of gaps—gaps to trip you up, gaps to slide through so you can disappear forever.” There’s a haunting, mysterious feel about it, that I couldn’t wait to dive into and explore.
March 10, 2015
Mercy Louis is the town’s golden girl. She’s pretty, smart, talented, athletic. From the outside her life looks perfect. But on the last day of school something disturbing is discovered and next thing everyone knows Mercy Louis collapses. And she’s only the beginning. Soon other girls are afflicted with the same mysterious ailment and know what knows what’s causing it and how to stop it.
The Unraveling of Mercy Louis sounds a lot like last year’s The Fever by Megan Abbott. Though I wanted to love The Fever, and its attempts to examine the social pressures teenage girls face in today’s society, it didn’t quite work for me. However, I’m hoping Mercy Louis will succeed where The Fever failed, due to its more unique setting (a small Texas oil town), and the addition of Mercy’s eccentric, evangelical Grandmother, who believes the Rapture is right around the corner.
March 3, 2015
This winter has felt never ending. It’s been brutally cold and I feel like I can’t remember what the ground looks like without snow on it. It’s reached the point where I find myself daydreaming of summer and vacation on a regular basis. All of which puts me in the mood for a good road trip novel. There are usually a couple to choose from every year but Mosquitoland by David Arnold seems like something special.
This novel follows Mim Malone on her thousand-mile journey aboard a Greyhound bus. Mim lives (rather unwillingly) with her dad and stepmom in the “wasteland” of Mississippi. But when she learns her mom is sick back in Cleveland, she slips away from home and begins the journey back home. I think there’s going to be a lot of interesting issues explored in this novel, but it was really the first line that sold me–“I am a collection of oddities, a circus of neurons and electrons: my heart is the ringmaster, my soul is the trapeze artist, and the world is my audience. It sounds strange because it is, and it is, because I am strange.” How do you put a book down after an opening like that?