Post-Conference Fog Relief

Lynn and Cindy: We ARE back from the ALA Annual Conference and it WAS wonderful!  We’ve been in a post-conference fog that seems to take longer to recover from every time.  Great sessions, wonderful meetings, catching up with friends and, of course, scoring fabulous books at the exhibits.  Thanks SO much to all the generous publishers who gave in to our pleas!  Here are a few of the treasures we hauled home that are now topping our towering stacks of books to read.  If we are quiet in the next few weeks you all will know that it is because we are reading reading reading. We even have a teacher offering bribes to get her hands on Maggie Stiefvater’s The Dream Thieves (Scholastic, Sep. 2013), sequel to last year’s Raven Boys.

Here’s just a sampling of what we brought home:

SaintsBoxersBoxers & Saints by Gene Luen Yang. (First Second. Sep. 2013) Cindy chaired the 2007 Printz committee that honored Yang’s American Born Chinese and we are both fans of his work. In this two-volume “set” Yang puts his considerable skill to work to retell the Boxer Rebellion in parallel stories from two very different perspectives. We can’t wait to read it and when we stopped in Artists’ Alley to say hello to Gene there right in front of us, eager to meet him was…Cory Doctorow.

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black. (Little, Brown, Sep. 2013) Vampires are sooooo not dead. #coldtown

Coldest GirlHypnotize Me by Gordon Korman. (Scholastic, Aug. 2013) The start of a new series by Korman who does funny as well as anyone. He had us laughing at the reader’s theater performance of this at the Scholastic brunch and it was only one of several enticing books shared there. We’re sorry for anyone who missed seeing Brandon Mull’s performance as Yoda for Jeffrey Brown’s new Star Wars book.

The Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson. (Viking, Jan. 2014) We learned that Laurie has a new contemporary stand alone fiction coming. We received a bound unedited manuscript for the book, which won’t publish until 2014. This is a story about a high school girl whose father suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder after serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. She told us she drew on her experience of her father’s WWII service and resulting PTSD after his work in the holocaust camps just after they’d been opened. Laurie warned that the ending and other parts are still being tweaked, “so bear with me.” Cindy has started this one and it is sure to be a book your teen readers are going to want. Opening line, “It started in detention. No surprise there, right?”

CurtsiesMore Than This by Patrick Ness (Candlewick, Sept. 2013)  Patrick Ness!  Need we say more???????

Curtsies & Conspiracies by Gail Carriger (Little, Brown Nov. 2013)  We were yearning for this sequel to one of our favorite steam punk delights of the year and Lynn got to have it first.  (Lynn – OK – I admit I read it in a gulp AT conference and loved it!)

And then there were the ones that got away….but we will be on the lookout for them:

From NorveltFangirl by Rainbow Rowell (St. Martins, Sep. 2013)  from the author of Eleanor & Park.

From Norvelt to Nowhere by Jack Gantos (Farrar, Sep. 2013) a sequel to the 2012 Newbery winner awarded by the committee Lynn served on in 2011-12.  Our middle schoolers are going to want this as much as we do!

Port Chicago 50Port Chicago 50: Disaster, Mutiny and the Fight for Civil Rights by Steve Sheinkin (Roaring Brook, Jan. 2014) We don’t care that this doesn’t pub for another 6 months. We want it NOW.

Battling Boy by Paul Pope (First Second, Oct. 2013)  Another graphic novel we can’t WAIT for!  We’ve been promised this and hope the publisher doesn’t forget – hint hint!)





About the Author:

Cindy Dobrez and Lynn Rutan are Booklist reviewers and middle-school librarians who have chaired both ALA’s Best Books for Young Adults and the Michael L. Printz Award for YA Literature committees. Follow Bookends on Twitter at @BookendsBlog. You can also find Cindy at @cdobrez and Lynn at @482april.

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