It is typical of a high school reading assignment to involve some sort of dystopian novel like The Handmaid’s Tale, Nineteen Eighty-Four, or who could forget, Animal Farm. These are great reads, but sometimes it is hard to relate to some of these adult characters that seem so far from this decade and far too boring for teens today. So, what do we replace these old school dystopian novels with? I suggest catching up with a new young adult series like Divergent or the Hunger Games.
Lately, I have been on a mission to read all of these awesome new teen dystopias after reading the Hunger Games trilogy. A trilogy that truly started a buzz in the teen reading world and major craze for producing teen dystopias into movies! Now that’s what I am talking about!
If you are looking for more dystopian reads beyond these, check out this awesome list of teen dystopias: Dystopia List and check out my short list of great reads that I already finished this summer:
Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth
Across the Universe Trilogy by Beth Revis
Belle Epoque by Elizabeth Ross. When Maude Pichon runs away from provincial Brittany to Paris, her romantic dreams vanish as quickly as her savings. Desperate for work, she answers an unusual ad. The Durandeau Agency provides its clients with a unique service—the beauty foil. Hire a plain friend and become instantly more attractive.
Monsieur Durandeau has made a fortune from wealthy socialites, and when the Countess Dubern needs a companion for her headstrong daughter, Isabelle, Maude is deemed the perfect foil.
But Isabelle has no idea her new “friend” is the hired help, and Maude’s very existence among the aristocracy hinges on her keeping the truth a secret. Yet the more she learns about Isabelle, the more her loyalty is tested. And the longer her deception continues, the more she has to lose.
Looking for that perfect birthday gift? Need to apologize to your girlfriend? Hoping to win over your teacher? Or maybe you just need a little pick me up. Nothing says love like the gift of bacon.
Go ahead. Picture a bunch of bacon sizzling on a griddle. The russet textures cooking to bacony perfection right before your eyes. Too much awesome for your imagination to handle? Then take a gander at this beautiful work of photography.
Can’t you just feel the love?
During the month of August we are giving away a generous bacon prize pack filled with a bacon wallet, bacon air freshener and more bacony goodness. It is our way of showing love and a great opportunity for you to re-gift these bacon prizes to the loved one of your choice. …Or you could keep them for yourself (I would if I could win). All you have to do is submit a few short words on how bacon changed your life. Our super intelligent computer will select a winner at random from all the entries.
Need some inspiration? Take a look at some books on bacon recipes. Just please, use a napkin. You’re drooling.
Born of Illusion by Teri Brown. If you enjoyed The Diviners by Libba Bray or Darker Still by Leanna Renee Hieber, Anna Van Housen helps her medium mother Margeurite do stage shows and seances in 1920s New York. Possibly Houdini’s daughter, she can sense feelings and see the future. Frightening visions show her mother in peril. New downstairs neighbor Cole introduces her to a society that studies people with gifts like hers. Sorting truth from illusion yields her destiny.
Check out these new DVDs coming soon!
Alphas: Season 2. Dr. Lee Rosen must re-assemble his now-defunct team, which had been discredited by the government, to face the growing threat of Alpha extremist Stanton Parish. With the help of tech genius Skylar and memory recorder Mitchell, Rosen and his team must work together to uncover Parish’s chilling plan. But with a mole in their midst, can they overcome the dangers that surround them and stop Parish before it’s too late?
GI Joe: Retaliation. The greatest American heroes are back, and they’ve been set up to take the fall for a terrible crime they didn’t commit. Now, Roadblock, Duke, and the other G.I. Joes must once again face their mortal enemy, COBRA, as well as dangerous new threats operating within the government. When all else fails, one option remains: Retaliation.
Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox. The Flash gets a chance to go back in time and right a violent, decades-past crime against his mother. However, the ripples of his good intentions prove disastrous, as a fractured, alternate reality now exists in place of the familiar one. Superman is nowhere to be found, and Batman is a grittier, more violent Dark Knight. Together, with Cyborg, they race to restore the continuity of Flash’s original timeline, while this new one is ravaged by war between the armies of Wonder Woman and Aquaman.
The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones hits theaters on August 21. Based on the book by Cassandra Clare, it’s the story of how Clary Fray discovers a secret world of demons and those who hunt them.
From Goodreads: When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder — much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Clary knows she should call the police, but it’s hard to explain a murder when the body disappears into thin air and the murderers are invisible to everyone but Clary.
Check out the official movie companion.
Fifth Wave by Rick Yancey. From Goodreads: After the 1st wave, only darkness remains. After the 2nd, only the lucky escape. And after the 3rd, only the unlucky survive. After the 4th wave, only one rule applies: trust no one. Now, it’s the dawn of the 5th wave, and on a lonely stretch of highway, Cassie runs from Them.
Twice Lost by Sarah Porter. From Goodreads: Mermaids have been sinking ships and drowning humans for centuries, and now the government is determined to put an end to the mermaid problem—by slaughtering all of them. Luce, a mermaid with exceptionally threatening abilities, becomes their number-one target, hunted as she flees down the coast toward San Francisco.
Darkness Strange and Lovely by Susan Dennard. From Goodreads: Following an all-out battle with the walking Dead, the Spirit Hunters have fled Philadelphia, leaving Eleanor alone to cope with the devastating aftermath. But there’s more trouble ahead—the evil necromancer Marcus has returned, and his diabolical advances have Eleanor escaping to Paris to seek the help of Joseph, Jie, and the infuriatingly handsome Daniel once again.
Identify the objects in these photos and you’ll be entered into a drawing to win a bubblewrap keychain! Enter as often as you’d like. New photos to guess each week. Week 3 Photos
After finishing the fabulous Theatre Illuminata Trilogy, I realized I was a little rusty on my plays. A lot of the books I’ve read lately give references to the classics, but with this series set in a theater with characters practically living and breathing Shakespeare, I noticed plenty of references to things I read in school. And plenty of things I’d only heard about but never read. It was time to fix that.
While browsing the library’s collection of classic literature, I noticed the ever-present cliff-notes and other study guides printed in order to help people “translate” Shakespearean and other forms of Ye Olde English listed along with the originals; then I discovered an entire collection of Shakespeare plays had been made into manga!
Since the main character of the series that sparked my newfound interest in Shakespeare is named Beatrice, I went first for the play with the character she is named after: Much Ado About Nothing. This manga version uses direct quotes from the play, and while there is a short summary in the back, rather than relying on paragraphs of footnotes to parse through the text, you use the pictures to get the gist of the story. With this light introduction to the story, I’m looking forward to reading the original text and knowing a little bit of what’s in store. Not to mention the art was just plain fun to look at!
During my search I found comic book versions of other classics, like The Iliad and Pride and Prejudice, biographies of historical figures like Amelia Earhart and Anne Frank, and even an action-packed comics version of the Bible! Mixed in with the superhero comics and manga, just waiting to help you with your required reading for school. Instead of taking shortcuts with cliff-notes and Wikipedia, why not try some comics?
…But seriously, read the originals too. You might end up liking them, especially with a visual already in your head! And then the next time you read a book with a character talking about Cathy and Heathcliff, or see a chapter beginning with a quote from The Odyssey, you’ll know exactly what they’re talking about!
.New Victorian/steampunk books hitting library bookshelves soon:
The Clockwork Key by Kristin Bailey. From Goodreads: When a fire consumes Meg’s home, killing her parents and destroying both her fortune and her future, all she has left is the tarnished pocket watch she rescued from the ashes. But this is no ordinary timepiece. The clock turns out to be a mechanical key—a key that only Meg can use—that unlocks a series of deadly secrets and intricate clues that Meg is compelled to follow.
Nobody’s Secret by Michaela MacColl. From Goodreads: One day, fifteen-year-old Emily Dickinson meets a mysterious, handsome young man. Surprisingly, he doesn’t seem to know who she or her family is. And even more surprisingly, he playfully refuses to divulge his name. Emily enjoys her secret flirtation with Mr. “Nobody” until he turns up dead in her family’s pond. She’s stricken with guilt. Only Emily can discover who this enigmatic stranger was before he’s condemned to be buried in an anonymous grave. Her investigation takes her deep into town secrets, blossoming romance, and deadly danger.
The Girl With the Iron Touch by Kady Cross. Third in the Steampunk Chronicles. From Goodreads: When mechanical genius Emily is kidnapped by rogue automatons, Finley Jayne and her fellow misfits fear the worst. What’s left of their archenemy, The Machinist, hungers to be resurrected, and Emily must transplant his consciousness into one of his automatons—or forfeit her friends’ lives.
Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare. Third in the Infernal Devices series. From Goodreads: Tessa Gray should be happy – aren’t all brides happy?
Yet as she prepares for her wedding, a net of shadows begins to tighten around the Shadowhunters of the London Institute. A new demon appears, one linked by blood and secrecy to Mortmain, the man who plans to use his army of pitiless automatons, the Infernal Devices, to destroy the Shadowhunters. Mortmain needs only one last item to complete his plan. He needs Tessa. And Jem and Will, the boys who lay equal claim to Tessa’s heart, will do anything to save her.