Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A few young adult series that you should check out!

Review by Sarah:

book jacketNormally in this blog Jan & I will talk mostly about Adult titles, however I want to bring to your attention a few young adult titles that I have enjoyed recently.  The first author I want to talk about is Diana Peterfreund. She originally wrote an adult series called “Secret Society Girl.” This series takes place on an elite university campus where the all male secret society, Rose and Grave, have decided to induct women into the society for the first time.  The main character Amy Haskell is one of these women tapped for the society. This causes all kinds of trouble with the Rose and Grave alumni who want the society to remain all male.  I really enjoyed this story which takes place over five books. There is mystery, intrigue and of course a love interest for Amy. 

After Peterfreund finished this series she switched things up and started a young adult book about unicorns.  These are not your typical white fluffy unicorns. Peterfreund has made unicorns venomous, man-eating beast with sharp fangs. Throughout the world unicorns have started to reemerge and attack humans.  The only people who can stop them are the virgin descendants of Alexander the Great.  Astrid Llewelyn has always thought that her mothers obsession with the legend of unicorns a bit crazy.  That is until one evening when she is out in the woods with her boyfriend, who is suddenly attacked by a unicorn.  Her mother packs her off to Rome to train as a unicorn hunter.  Astrid is your average teenage girl who has a strained relationship with her mother, is falling in love with an American art student and is not at all sure about the mission of the unicorn hunters.  There are currently two books in this series, the first one is Rampant and the second is Ascendant. I hope that there will be a third one. 

Another author who also has a different take on a mythical creature is Carrie Jones (who happens to be a fellow Bates grad). Jones has taken pixies and made them in to a creature that has the uncontrollable need to feed off the blood of boys.  The story follows Zara whose dad left when she was born, her stepdad has just died and her mom has packed her off to a small town in Maine.  Shortly after Zara arrives she sees a guy following her everywhere. At first she just thinks that it is a figment of her imagination, but she is wrong and he is leaving a trail of gold dust. This is a new take on the typical idea of what a pixie is.  As with most young adult books Zara has a difficult relationship with her mother, and is perhaps falling in love.  For any of you who are familiar with the Ellsworth (Maine) area you will enjoy being able to visualize exactly where parts of this story take place.  There are currently three books in the series, Need, Captivate and Entice. There is a fourth book coming out next year.   

: :  Request each book from the Bangor Public Library by clicking on the cover  : :
If the book is unavailable for some reason, be sure to try the "Search MaineCat" button on the upper right; this will take you to more libraries in Maine to request these titles.

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  1. I normally don't read YA, except for all the Harry Potter's of course, but I'm really going to have to try one of these.

  2. I haven't read any of these yet, although I've heard very good things about all of them. There's a lot of great YA out there, especially fantasy YA. I never used to read that much of it, either, but since some of my favorite books read during the past couple of years were YA I've started to pay a little more attention.

  3. The Peterfreund books are well worth a try. You will be surprised by the depth of her stories. Teen novels have come a long way, but then so have our teens. I have not tried Carrie Jones, but good to know she has roots in Maine.

  4. I have a few books that are technically "Young Adult" titles in my collection, though I don't typically read ones about contemporary schoolgirls or college students. I was curious about Secret Society Girl, though, and went to look for BPL's copy. Unfortunately, that was billed in September 2008, so I don't think it's coming back. Of course, I could request it from one of the other libraries, but I usually do that only with books I know I'm going to read, not ones I just want to scan to see whether I might like them or not. Is there any chance the BPL might get another copy?

  5. I recently donated a copy of Secret Society Girl to the library. It is in the process of being cataloged. If you want to have us hold it for you just email Jan or I and we can place that hold.

  6. Thanks for letting us know about Secret Society Girl, and to to Sarah for the donation!! I've just added Sarah's email as well to the left of our Blog. If anyone has any issues finding one of our books PLEASE let us know, you can email us or post a comment, and we will do our best to find you a copy! And you can ALWAYS email us to reserve a book!

    Thanks again,

  7. I tracked back to find this post because I had to mention that I read Secret Society Girl and thought it was very enjoyable -- thanks for the donated copy, Sarah! It was fun reading about all the society goings-on, especially initiation night. I have my suspicions about what's really up with Amy's roommate, too. The author did a good job bringing her characters to life, and I liked the way she handled Amy's viewpoint, which was often sarcastic but never snide. I wasn't too pleased with the way the boyfriend situation resolved, but perhaps I'll be more satisfied with that in the next book. Definitely worth reading more of the series.