Booktopia YA Buzz
June 2013 | Edition 5
What I am currently reading: Fire by Kristin Cashore (because look! See how pretty it is! And also because Graceling was so good, I want more).

What I plan to read next:
Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs (because I hear there's going to be a Tim Burton movie! And also because the title is so cool, I can't help myself. I must read it).

Happy reading!

Sarah McDuling

Booktopia Young Adult Buzz

AKA Expert Decision Maker*

Follow me on Twitter @sarahmcduling

(If this newsletter is cut off in your email program, or you cannot see the right-hand side with the index, please be sure to click on the link at the top of this email to view it online).

*Title is self-appointed (and wildly inaccurate). 

Click here for more details or to order WILDLIFE
by Fiona Wood

This book is beautiful. You will love it. You should read it. Immediately.

That's really all anyone needs to know about any book written by Fiona Wood. As my friends and family will attest, I can talk about Fiona Wood, and all the reasons why she is a national treasure, for literally hours

Anyone who has read Six Impossible Things will understand my enthusiasm. I sincerely believe it is impossible to read Six Impossible Things and not adore every second of it. It's the kind of book that feels like an old friend, the kind of book that screams, "I am an Instant Classic! Put me on your High School syllabus so that I may enrich the lives of today's youth!"

Happily, Wildlife is every bit as good as Six Impossible Things, while also managing to be a completely different kind of novel with something very different to say.

The blurb will tell you everything you need to know about the storyline of Wildlife What I will tell you is that I wish this book was a person so that it could be my best friend. And then we could hang out together with Six Impossible Things and my life would be perfect. I will also say that the character of Lou has been awarded one of my highly prestigious "Awesome Legends of Greatness" medals (bestowed upon only the greatest and most wonderful of fictional people). Just so that you know how serious this is, the last recipient was Gus from The Fault in Our Stars

Wildlife is a book about growing up and figuring out who you are, perfect for fans of Melina Marchetta, Jaclyn Moriarty and Sarah Dessen . It's the kind of book that will strike a real chord of familiarity with just about everyone, no matter where you're from or what your age. For anyone who has ever had a bitchy friend or an unrequited crush, for anyone who has ever been disappointed, humiliated, confused or heartbroken. Basically, for anyone with a beating heart and the ability to experience human emotions... this book is for you.

Click here for more details or to order FAIRYTALES FOR WILDE GIRLS
by Allyse Near

I knew I was going to love Fairytales for Wilde Girls before I even finished reading the blurb. When a book is described as a "deliciously dark bubblegum-gothic fairytale" then I know it's a book for me. In Sarah-Speak, "deliciously dark bubblegum-gothic fairytale" translates roughly as "awesomely amazing best-thing-ever" - which is precisely my opinion of this gorgeous book.

Fairytales for Wilde Girls
is full to the brim with charm and whimsy. Allyse Near weaves a rich tapestry of allusions, drawing from Victorian ghost stories and Romantic poetry and a myriad of different fairytales to create the kind of story that just begs to be made into a Tim Burton movie (Helena Bonham Carter would be perfect for the character of Lileo Pardieu).

The main character in this beautifully twisted bedtime story is named Isola Wilde - after Oscar Wilde's little sister. Isola is a fascinating girl, privy to a secret world full of homicidal mermaids, hyperactive fairies and carnivorous unicorns.

Fairytales for Wilde Girls is like a psychedelic mash-up of Alice in Wonderland, Edgar Allan Poe and The Brothers Grimm . Reading this book is like gorging yourself on rainbow sherbert and dark chocolate. And the best part? It has pictures! So just in case you have trouble imagining what a murderous one-eyed mermaid called Christobelle might look like, never fear! A sketch of her is included in the book, along with portraits of the other characters.

All in all, the best way I can think of to describe this book is "enchantingly creepy" or maybe "magically spooky". Either way, this is a perfect read for fans of The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern and The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman.

Interested in Fairytales for Wilde Girls?
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Click here for more details or to order DARE YOU TO
by Katie McGarry

Dare You To is Katie McGarry's eagerly awaited second novel.

Since the "New Adult" genre burst onto the scene and promptly became the coolest subgenre since the dawn of Paranormal Romance, it's getting tough to identify which books should be classified as New Adult and which are really Young Adult books, all dressed up to look older (i.e. carrying fake IDs so they can party with the grown-up books).

If the characters are still in high school, then logic dictates it should be Young Adult Fiction. Then again, if these high-school-aged characters are running amok in a world of sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll then maybe it's more appropriate to call it New Adult?

Katie McGarry, author of the best selling teen romance Pushing the Limits, is one in a recent crop of authors to be writing these difficult-to-categorize books. Is it an edgy Young Adult novel, or relatively tame New Adult romance with a high school setting? I confess, I can't answer this question. It's a grey area and so I've decided to create a new subgenre. Right here and now, before your very eyes, witness the birth of YNA Fiction. Young-Slash-New-Adult! It's so hot right now! It's "hip and happening", as the young folks say.

Embarrassing confession time: I got a bit emotional while reading Dare You To . Now admittedly, I have been known to get teary during dog food commercials, so it's not as though making me cry is all that difficult. Still, I can't lie. This book is a bit of an emotional rollercoaster - packed full of angst-ridden teen drama and that special brand of "will-they-won't-they" romance that never fails to grab me hook line and sinker. It's like Titanic, you know? Two people from difficult walks of life, drawn together by a love so powerful that nothing can tear them apart. Except maybe an inconveniently placed iceberg... but luckily Dare You To is set firmly on dry land and is therefore blissfully iceberg-free.

Overall, this is a very addictive read, bound to appeal to fans of Jamie McGuire, Colleen Hoover and Abbi Glines.
 Viva la NYA Fiction!

Click here for more details or to orderSIEGE AND STORM
by Leigh Bardugo

There has been a lot of hype surrounding Leigh Bardugo's Grisha Trilogy with the first book, Blood and Shadow, selling like hotcakes in both the US and the UK. Dreamworks has already secured the film rights and there are a lot of people predicting that, The Grisha Trilogy will be the next big film franchise to take the world by storm.

My opinion? I sincerely hope they are right! It would be wonderful for a series as great as this one to get the attention it deserves. I haven''t been this excited by a Young Adult fantasy novel since Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas.

Set in a Russian-inspired fantasy realm called "Ravka", The Grisha Trilogy is the story of Alina Starkov, an orphan girl who discovers that she has a rare and powerful gift. She is one of The Grisha  (people with magical control over the elements) who are trained to kill the blood-thirsty flying beasts that swarm throughout the perpetually dark regions of Ravka, known as the Shadow Fold...

Nope. Forget it. Even as I'm writing this, I can tell it sounds ridiculous. You'll just have to trust me on this one. Leigh Bardugo has created a rich and intricately detailed world, evocative of Imperial Russia.  Romance, adventure, intrigue, magic -  these books have everything.

Perfect for fans of Tamora Pierce, Kristin Cashore and Maria V. Snyder.
Interested in Siege and Storm?
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Click here for more details or to order ANGELFALL
by Susan Ee

I'm a big fan of Dystopian Young Adult fiction. I am not such a big fan of books about fallen angels. Just about the only exception I can think of when it comes to books about fallen angels is Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke and Bone series, which is awesome and dear God, why isn't the next book out yet? I-need-to-read-it-right-now-ARRGH!

Aaaaaaand I'm back. Talking about Angelfall, which was actually first published as an ebook in 2011 but proved so popular that the film rights have been snapped up and it's now being released in paperback.

Given my aversion to fallen angels, I approached Angelfall with caution. I wasn't quite sure what I was getting myself into. The main character's name is Penryn, which seemed silly to me (no offense to any Penryn's out there). Plus there was the whole "Angel Apocalypse" thing, which didn't really grab me (I prefer a good zombie apocalypse) but by the end of the first chapter I was well and truly hooked.

Angelfall isn't your average dystopian novel. It has elements of fantasy and science fiction thrown together in a refreshingly original mix. The angels are evil and bloodthirsty. Penryn's mother is straight-up scary-crazy. The romance is painfully doomed. Throw in some deranged scientists conducting Frankenstein-like experiments, and an army of cannibalistic robot-monsters and... hey presto! You will have nightmares.

The perfect read for fans of Cassandra Clare, Lauren Oliver and Carrie Ryan.

Click here for more details or to order PERCY JACKSON & THE SEA OF MONSTERS
by Rick Riordan

Attention Percy Jackson fans! The wait is almost over!

It's been three years since Percy Jackson and the Lightning Theif hit the big screens in 2010.  Most movie franchises based on Young Adult novels (i.e. basically 90% of movie franchises these days) tend to release one movie a year. By comparison, three years seems like long time to keep fans waiting. Luckily, it seems as though the wait will be worth it.

Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters is slated for release this August and looks every bit as amazing as the first movie. You can watch full length official trailer here.

NB: Fans of the the TV show Castle will notice Nathan Fillion makes an appearance in the trailer! Nathan Fillion, you guys! He's in this movie! And, of course, Logan Lerman is back in the titular role of Percy Jackon. Even if you didn't see the first movie, you may still recognize Logan Lerman from The Perks of Being a Wallflower (by far one of the best films of 2012).

For those unfamiliar with Rick Riordan's adventure packed Percy Jackson series, these books are crazy-addictive and loads of fun  - especially for fans of Greek Mythology.

The premise here is that the Gods of Olympus are still kicking around in the 21st century. Percy Jackson is the son of Poseidon, God of the Sea. This means that he's half human, half God. You know, like what's his name? Hercules? And Perseus (aka Sam Worthington in Clash of the Titans).

Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters is coming to cinemas in August. Be sure to check out the whole series here.


Jason SegelWell, here it is. Breaking news in the world of Young Adult Fiction. Jason Segel has written a series of Young Adult novels! (Pause for effect.)

Who is Jason Segel, you may ask (if you are a time traveler, from the distant past, who has never seen a television)? Well, many people know him as "Marshall" from the popular TV sitcom, How I Met Your Mother. Others may be familiar with him from such brilliant comedic films as Forgetting Sarah Marshall and I Love You, Man.

Anyway, the point that I am taking a very long time to make is this:

Jason Segel is an actor.

Now when actors write books, it can sometimes work out brilliantly. Like when Kurt from Glee (AKA Chris Colfer) wrote this book. Or sometimes it can be a little bit less brilliant. Like when Pamela Anderson unleashed this book on an unsuspecting public. Either way, it is always interesting to see how well these Hollywood types can string a sentence together. And in the case of Jason Segel, I'm prepared to bet good money that his books will be great.

The title of the series is Nightmares and the first book is due to be published next year. Voilà! Consider yourself updated!

Don't miss out on these great new releases from top selling authors Brigid Kremmerer, Lauren Conrad and Philippa Gregory.
by Brigid Kemmerer
by Lauren Conrad
by Philippa Gregory
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
For fans of authors like John Green, Gayle Forman and Maureen McCarthy - be sure to check out these exciting new titles. Especially The Whole of my World by the amazing new Australian talent, Nicole Hayes.
by Sarah Dessen
by Nicole Hayes
by Kristen-Paige Madonia
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Don't miss these magical gems. Scarlet in the Snow is a beautiful fairytale re-telling of Beauty and the Beast from the ever-talented Sophie Masson, while The Bone Dragon is a gorgeous debut novel - a real treat for fans of magical realism.
By Sophie Masson
by Alexia Casale
by James Moloney
Click here for more details or to order

Check out these great new adventures set in imaginative dystopian/steampunk worlds. I'm particularly excited about Icons by Margaret Stohl, co-author of Beautiful Creatures.
by Margaret Stohl
by Amy Tintera
by Kady Cross
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order

New Adult fiction is targeted at older teens and early twenty-somethings. These books are about being young and reckless, falling in love for the first time and experimenting with the kinds of irresponsible behavior commonly associated with the crazy youth of today.  In other words, these books are just a little bit naughty.

So take heed, kids! I f you are not old enough to drive a car then these books are most likely too "racy" for you. Haha! See what I did there? Car + Racy = I'm hilarious! You have my permission to start laughing now...

HOPELESS by Colleen Hoover
Click here for more details or to orderSarah says: Be warned, this book may break your heart a little bit. Hopeless touches on some very sensitive topics ranging from teen suicide to child abuse. There is a good chance you might cry during the course of this book. There is also the chance that you may pass out due to the exceptional swoon-worthiness of Dean Holder - a character I would very much like to marry (if only he weren't fictional. And way too young for me).

Blurb: From the author of Slammed and Point of Retreat, comes a heartbreaking new romance.

Sky meets Dean Holder, a guy with a reputation that rivals her own. Holder has the ability to invoke feelings in Sky she's never had before. In just one encounter he leaves her terrified yet captivated and something about him brings up a rush of memories from the past that she's worked so hard to bury away.

Sky knows Holder is nothing but trouble and tries to keep him at a distance, but he is adamant about learning everything he can about her. Sky finally caves to his unwavering pursuit, but she soon finds out that Holder isn't the person he's been claiming to be. When the secrets he's been keeping are finally revealed, every single facet of Sky's life changes forever...

THE EDGE OF NEVER by J.A. Redmerski
by Jennifer Echols
by Rebecca Donovan
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In This Issue

Book of the Month

Fairytales for Wilde Girls

Dare You To

Siege and Storm


At The Movies

The News Room

Bestselling Authors

Contemporary Realism


Action & Adventure

New Adult

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Click here for more details or to order