Thursday, June 13, 2013

52 Books 2013 - Young Adult Fiction

I'm doing really well this year with my goal of reading at least 52 books! If you've talked to me since 2010, you know that I tend to ├╝berobsess about it. I did not reach my goal in 2011 and have vowed to never let that happen again.

So far in 2013 I have read 41, 22 of which were fiction. That is really good for me, since I tend to overdose on depressing non-fiction. I've even read a couple new young adult novels because they sounded interesting.

Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver sounded like a version of the Bill Murray movie Groundhog Day and the description intrigued me. I would sum it up as:

Mean Girl gets a clue while reliving her death day seven times and realizing that everybody has reasons and everything you do has consequences, surrounded by enough teen angst, sex, and drug use to make up several modern Rebel Without a Cause spinoffs.

It's a first novel, and I think it was a good premise, but it could have used a bit more fleshing out while simultaneously being edited. What I didn't like about it was how steeped in relative morality it seemed . We find out why the Queen Mean Girl is the way she is, but she's now driven someone to contemplate suicide and made life hell for many others. The main character loves her, flaws and all, but as the reader, I don't. I'm pretty much appalled. And that makes me question the main character. Her sole motivation for actions appears to be fitting in and being popular, something else I've never understood. If I hadn't been in the mood for a distraction, I might not have finished this book, because it ran long and I wasn't sure it was going to get better enough to be worth it.

However, Every Day by David Levithan was so good I could hardly put it down! It also had an intriguing premise, but unlike Before I Fall, it was tightly constructed and kept me hooked. The idea is that A, the main character, wakes up in a different person's body each morning. A has learned how to live like that and manages until the day A falls in love with his host's girlfriend. What will happen? Can they find a way to be together? Read it and find out!