Saturday, November 20, 2010

Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy

So...have you been listening to me about just how GOOD young adult books can be? Have you gone out and TRIED some of these books? Because if you haven't, what the heck!? Go browse the YA section at your nearest library. Do I sound insistent, maybe a little worried? Well, of course! I don't want you to miss some of the best writing around. But, thankfully (notice the Thanksgiving segue?), my students are gobbling (#2) them up and that's what me, anyway. 

The current YA book that I am devouring is SKULDUGGERY PLEASANT by Derek Landy 12 year old Stephanie is dumbfounded when she inherits her author-Uncle's estate. At this point she has no idea that he was murdered. Suddenly, she is attacked but then saved by a detective known as Skulduggery Pleasant. Funny thing is, he's dead. And nothing but a skeleton. A well-dressed skeleton with a dry, sarcastic sense of humor. A skeleton who can throw fireballs. Now THAT was unexpected!

Derek Landy is a young author from Ireland who thankfully (#3) read WAY too many fantasy books and comics in his youth. And still does. This makes for one of the most action-packed, hilarious, page-turning, fantasy-lovers-dreams-come-true kind of book.

Don't be turkey (#4) and miss this book that kept me surprised, laughing, entertained, and wanting more! Gratefully (#5, last one, I promise) there are several sequels waiting for me and YOU!  YAY BOOKS!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Scott Westerfeld's Books

I must, must, must thank teacher Donalyn Miller, author of THE BOOK WHISPERER, for recommending  Scott Westerfeld. Go to his website and see REALLY cool videos. I can't wait to show the 5th graders!

I read his UGLIES series (scroll down) a couple of years ago but had not read any of his other books. Donalyn's 5th graders highly recommended THE MIDNIGHTERS series and I am hooked! . The first book is subtitled THE SECRET HOUR.

Here's a blurb: A few nights after Jessica Day arrives in Bixby, Oklahoma, she wakes up at midnight to find the entire world frozen, except for her and a few others who call themselves 'midnighters'. Dark things haunt this midnight hour - dark things with a mysterious interest in Jessica. The question is ... why? The Secret Hour is a compelling tale of dark secrets, midnight romance, eerie creatures, courage, destiny, and unexpected peril.

From Scott's website: Uglies

Uglies is set in a world in which everyone has an operation when they turn sixteen, making them supermodel beautiful. Big eyes, full lips, no one fat or skinny. You might think this is a good thing, but it’s not. Especially if you’re one of the Smokies, a bunch of
radical teens who’ve decided they want to keep their own faces. (How anti-social of them.)

Uglies is a trilogy-plus-one, with Extras being a “companion novel” and told from a different point of view. All four Uglies books have been New York Times bestsellers!

Then there's his LEVIATHAN series that really sounds intriguing:

Prince Aleksander, would-be heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, is on the run. His own people have turned on him. His title is worthless. All he has is a battletorn war machine and a loyal crew of men.

Deryn Sharp is a commoner, disguised as a boy in the British Air Service. She’s a brilliant airman. But her secret is in constant danger of being discovered.

With World War I brewing, Alek and Deryn’s paths cross in the most unexpected way…taking them on a fantastical, around-the-world adventure that will change both their lives forever.

This man must write 24/7...go check out the REST of his books, I'm sure you'll find something that will delight you!