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Erin’s Summer YA Reading List

Here they are, in no particular order…

Summer YA Books1

  1. Audrey, Wait! by Robin Benway
    I spotted this on the “Staff Picks” display at the library I’m working at this summer.

  2. The Mysterious Adventures of Pauline Bovary by Edeet Ravel
    I enjoyed The Thrilling Adventures of Pauline de Lammermoor (book one in the Pauline, btw series) and I’m eager to find out what Pauline does next.

  3. Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson
    There’s been a ton of buzz about this book in the blogosphere and mainstream media. Check out this chilling book trailer.

  4. Lost at Sea by Bryan Lee O’Malley
    I picked this up at the Toronto Comic Arts Festival just before I left for Calgary.

  5. The Plain Janes by Cecil Castellucci and Jim Rugg
    A graphic novel with a cute title—plus, I’ve heard it’s pretty good.

  6. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith
    Apparently, zombies are the new vampires. Plus, who doesn’t love Pride and Prejudice?

  7. The Uninvited by Tim Wynne-Jones
    According to this review in Quill and Quire, Wynne-Jones’ latest novel has “all the appeal of a sexy vampire, sans the fangs.”

  8. The Lit Report by Sarah N. Harvey
    One of the few titles on this year’s OLA Best Bets for young adults that I haven’t read yet.

  9. Prada and Prejudice by Mandy Hubbard
    I love the title. I’m a sucker for anything that alludes to Pride and Prejudice.

  10. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
    A friend recently described this as the funniest book she’d ever read. That’s a pretty good endorsement, I’d say.


Book Review— The Thrilling Life of Pauline de Lammermoor by Edeet Ravel

Pauline cover.inddThe Thrilling Life of Pauline de Lammermoor leaf
(Pauline, btw, Book 1)

by Edeet Ravel
Vancouver: Raincoast Books, 2007
224 pp., paperback, $7.95 (Cdn.)
ISBN-13 978-1-55192-988-0
Recommended for Ages 12 to 15.

“School is absolutely, definitely, incontestably OVER. For the summer, anyway. And I, Pauline Carelli-Bloom, aged nearly 14, am going to spend the summer writing my very first novel. Now I know exactly what fate has in store for me: I’m going to be a world-famous, bestselling, novelist.”

The Thrilling Life of Pauline de Lammermoor is the first book in the Pauline, btw series, written by Giller Prize finalist Edeet Ravel. Pauline is Ravel’s first foray into young adult lit.

Armed with a thesaurus and a copy of You Too Can Write a Great Novel, Pauline Carelli-Bloom is writing her very first book. Her own life is rich with material—from her peculiar parents (her Dad is an artist who paints pictures of old shoes, while her Mom is an ex-opera singer who lives in a lopsided house), to major drama with her BFF, to her developing relationship with an almost maybe-boyfriend, there’s plenty to write about. She also tackles more difficult stories, including her parents’ divorce, a teacher’s loss of a friend to AIDS, and her next door neighbour’s suicide.

Ravel writes like an adult who knows what being fourteen is really like. Pauline’s naivety is obvious, but she’s also heartfelt, easy to relate to, and very witty. There are plenty of pop-cultural references that teens will recognize, such as Canadian Idol and instant messenger lingo. It’s a quick, entertaining read and could easily be finished in one large chunk. There’s not much of a plot, but Ravel does a good job establishing Pauline’s character and history, and setting readers’ up for the next two volumes.

4p (VOYA rating, broad or general YA appeal).