Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Autumn passes us by way too fast, and we seem to get less of it every year. Despite the brevity of the season, we still managed to fit some fall reads.

Here is everything we read in September, October, and November:

Stephanie

This month I read Into the Dim by Janet B. Taylor, which involved time travel and the Scottish highlands, and I loved it. Then I finally finished off The School for Good and Evil series with The Last Ever After by Soman Chainani. Then I read Foxheart by Claire Legrand. I actually read two nonfiction books (unusual for me): The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondō (twice) and The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson.


Kristan

I'm in the middle of TO STAY ALIVE, a gripping novel in verse about the mid-1800s journey west to California in search of a better life. Specifically, it is a fictionalized account of the infamous Donner party, although the story is told from the point of view of a different family. To be honest, I don't have a particular interest in the subject, but I loved Skila Brown's previous novel in verse, CAMINAR. (And, full disclosure, she and I share an agent.) Halfway through, I've flagged several poems and lines that struck me, and I'm haunted by the hardship these pioneers are enduring. And I haven't even gotten to the cannibalism yet! So far it's just the beauty and brutality of Mother Nature.


Ingrid

Oooh, I'm intrigued by the book Kristan is reading. Minus the cannibalism, I've always loved pioneer stories. Hmm, perhaps that's why I ended up migrating west, too! While compiling my own Fall reading list, I realized I'm still listening to a ton of audio books--in fact, almost all of them are from audible :). Over the past few months, I've consumed the following: BEFORE WE WERE YOURS by Lisa Wingate, EMERALD GREEN: THE RUBY RED SERIES by Kerstin Gier, THE LAST TIME WE SAY GOODBYE by Cynthia Hand, UNDER ROSE-TAINTED SKIES by Louise Gornall, and THE ORPHAN'S TALE by Pam Jenoff. I'm currently listening to THE SMELL OF OTHER PEOPLE'S HOUSES by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock (and loving it!) and am also reading fellow debut 18-er Demetra Brodsky's ARC of DIVE SMACK, which so far is incredibly smart and intense ... I can't wait to find out how it ends!


Sarah

Ooh, THE SMELL OF OTHER PEOPLE'S HOUSES is one of my picks for the Book-A-Day Advent Calendar that I put together for the school where I teach. Can't wait to read it! At the moment, I'm reading MOXIE by Jennifer Mathieu and THE ODYSSEY translated by Emily Wilson (who is the first woman to do so, by the way) but this autumn I've read THE FIFTH SEASON by NK Jemisin, THE LONELIEST GIRL IN THE UNIVERSE, THUG, NOUGHTS AND CROSSES and A CHRISTMAS CAROL.


Wednesday, September 13, 2017


Stephanie

This month I read Caraval by Stephanie Garber, which was amazing!!!! It's my favorite thing that I've read so far this year. I entirely loved it. And then I read Song of the Current by Sarah Tolcser, and I loved that too. It had a great atmosphere. I've also started The Alchemists of Loom by Elise Kova.


Ingrid

I'm currently reading about German circus performers during WWII (fascinating!) in The Orphan's Tale by Pam Jenoff. Earlier this month I read The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis (haunting and fabulous and un-put-down-able) and When Dimple Met Rishi, which I loved from the first paragraph. Also, bonus: I got to meet Sandhya Menon at a book event in Denver and chat with her about Dimple and all things writing!



Kristan

I'm so jealous of you guys, with all your reading, and especially Ingrid meeting Sandhya Menon! I'm still working my way through Becky Wallace's SKYLIGHTER, the sequel to STORYSPINNER, which I loved. My August was super busy, though, with extended travel, so I'm hopeful and excited to do more reading in September!


Sarah

This month I finished THE GIRL OF INK AND STARS by Kiran Millwood Hargrave, which was so lovely and enjoyable. I would have devoured this book as a pre-teen so get thee to a bookstore, oh young of heart. I also read a couple of addictive contemporaries UNCONVENTIONAL by Maggie Harcourt and WING JONES by Katherine Webber. I'm still meditating on the latter because I've started running. If you don't know me, this is one giant leap for lazy-kind. At present, I am stuck in to THE FIFTH SEASON and bowing down to its genius.


Thursday, August 3, 2017


Here's what we've been reading while trying to beat the summer heat!

Stephanie

This month I finished The Star Thief by Lindsey Becker, though most of it got read in June. I LOVED it. I also read The Magic Words by Cheryl Klein, about writing for children and young adults, and it had some good reminders in it. I read Out of the Silent Planet by CS Lewis, which I've been meaning to get to for years, and The Iron Trial by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare, and I'm excited to continue the series.


Sarah

This month I've read WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI, A MONSTER CALLS, LUCKIEST GIRL ALIVE, TRUTH OR DARE, LORD OF SHADOWS and re-read THE DARKEST PART OF THE FOREST. I have re-read this book more than any other apart from ANNE OF GREEN GABLES. I don't quite understand my compulsion, but some things are best not to be questioned. Now that I think about it, I'm overdue for a re-read of DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE...


Ingrid

I've been on an audio book kick for a while, mostly because I'm always in the car, and that trend has continued this summer, though I did manage to squeeze in one actual hold-in-your-hands-smell-the-pages book. Ahhhh, heaven! I recently read/listened to:

GEM AND DIXIE by Sara Zarr-- a moving, emotional story about family and sisterhood by one of my favorite authors; HOW TO START A FIRE AND WHY: A NOVEL by Jesse Ball-- intelligent and raw, the MC's voice reminds me of Holden Caulfield; MY HEART AND OTHER BLACK HOLES by Jasmine Warga, who explores a difficult topic with a delicate and authentic hand; ONCE AND FOR ALL by Sarah Dessen--a story about loss and love, delivered in Dessen's solid, heartwarming style.


Kristan

Not quite finished, although I will be soon: I've been reading the sweeping family saga HOMEGOING by Yaa Gyasi. (Not YA, just FYI.) I don't want to give too much way, so I will just say that I love the structure, which manages to make small, personal stories feel very epic.


Monday, May 1, 2017


Stephanie

This month I read The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle by Janet Fox, which was lovely and creepy. And then I spent most of the month reading Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor. I'm about a third of the way through, and I'm in love. The world building, the characters, and the prose are so so gorgeous. I also read two nonfiction books that I won't name, because they were for secret writing research. ;)


Sarah

I finished STRANGE THE DREAMER even though I really tried to pace myself. It is wonderful. Everything you'd want and a bit more that you didn't even know existed in your wanting until suggested by the sorcery of Laini Taylor. Completely absorbing and inspiring. I'm currently stuck in THE GIRL OF INK AND STARS, which is sharply clever and from page one, paragraph one, charming and beguiling. A MONSTER CALLS and THE NEST are also on the go as I'm reading with student groups. It's good to be me!


Kristan

As predicted last month, this month I read CROOKED KINGDOM by Leigh Bardugo. Whoo, what a ride. Bardugo is impressive as ever with plot, but what really sang in this series were her characters. Such a varied cast, each one deep as the the True Sea. As a reader, I love sinking so completely into a book like I did with this one, and as a writer, I find so much to learn from and be inspired by.


Ingrid

This month I read ALL THE UGLY AND WONDERFUL THINGS by Bryn Greenwood, which was raw and complex, masterful and controversial. It made my heart ache and my head spin. Greenwood raised some tough questions in this compelling, disturbing story told from conflicting points of view. I still keep thinking about these characters, and probably will for a while. I then jumped into GIRL IN PIECES--another tough yet captivating book about a very sad girl on a long, hard journey to self-acceptance. Finally, I just started listening to the audio version of THE HATE U GIVE by Angie Thomas. I have a feeling it's going to be a heart-wrenching, gut-slugging read as well. Next up: something a bit on the lighter side!


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Stephanie, Ingrid, Sarah & Kristan — we read, write, discuss and celebrate Young Adult lit.


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on the shelf

The Bitter Kingdom
Wild Awake
The Raven Boys
Mind Games
Eleanor and Park
The Shattered Mountain
The Shadow Cats
Transparent
Froi of the Exiles
Days of Blood & Starlight
Every Day
Jellicoe Road
Finnikin of the Rock
Guitar Notes
The Dead-Tossed Waves
The Crown of Embers
New House 5: How A Dorm Becomes A Home
Bitterblue
The Fault in Our Stars
Pretties


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