Writing

Recommended Reading 2016

Every year, I take a moment to post some books I read over the past twelve months that I think you should consider. This was a crazy-busy year for me, so I didn’t get a lot of reading done, but here is this year’s crop of recommended titles:

  • The Wild Robot by Peter Brown
  • Uprooted by Naomi Novik
  • When Friendship Followed Me Home by Paul Griffin
  • Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen

How it Happened: I Hunt Killers

I Hunt Killers mass market paperback

This one’s easy. I’ve already written about it!

Check out this piece I wrote for Mulholland Drive a few years back. It’s basically got the story down pat, though in looking at it now, a couple of details (mostly about timing) are off. No big deal, though.

WiRL: “A blur in his crotch”

A very cool episode

Barry has a book challenged; guess which one! After reading Bruce Springsteen’s memoir, Barry has an epiphany. Leia requests her favorite musician. Morgan plans and executes a toddler’s birthday party without any help.

Two Interviews for The Secret Sea

The Secret Sea coverTwo interviews have been posted for The Secret Sea, so I figured I’d point ’em out to you…

First up is SciFiChick.com, where I say stuff like:

It’s about family and friendship and what survives death and how far you’d be willing to go to save someone you love…and what could make you not save them.

Then we have the Teen Librarian Toolbox, where I say stuff like:

…their worst nightmare is a super-smart, fiercely independent 12-year-old girl!

Check ’em out!

SLJ on The Secret Sea

The Secret Sea coverJust in time for launch day, School Library Journal offers up its take on The Secret Sea! (Once again, I’ve redacted a bit for spoiler purposes. Emphasis mine.)

Terrifying visions of subway stations flooded by ocean water. A somnambulistic journey to the World Trade Center. Things are definitely getting weirder by the day for Zak Killian, and that’s before he uncovers the secret of [SPOILER]. That reveal leads Zak and his best friends Khalid and Moira into an alternate universe where Zak can [SPOILER]. Lyga creates a compelling and impressively fleshed out alternate universe; sci-fi, fantasy, and dystopian elements feature throughout, from mysterious wild magic to the glowing electroleum power source. A subplot involving the brutal repression of women by means of a legal system very similar to our own slavery adds depth to the comparison of the two worlds. Though upper–middle grade through young adult readers will appreciate these elements, the narrative’s success ultimately relies on its compelling adventures and character development. However, it is somewhat disappointing that readers have to wait roughly about 100 pages to cross into the alternate universe proper. VERDICT Though it might start a little slow some for some, this work ultimately delivers the sci-fi, fantasy, and dystopian goods and will draw in middle schoolers with its impressive world-building. A strong choice for many young adult and upper–middle grade collections.