So, since the conception of this blog, River and I have been making friends with wonderful people within the publishing industry. One lovely lady we get to work with is Vikki Vansickle, who is a fabulous lady who always gives us the up and up on all the awesome YA and Middle Grade books that will be releasing from Penguin and their various imprints. I thought it would be fun to spotlight a book that came from Penguin as a way to say thank you to Penguin and Vikki in particular, for all their support over this year in helping us get our feet wet in this crazy world of book blogging.
But instead of giving you one release to talk about, I’m actually going to give you two by the same author: the amazing, quirky Lesley Livingston. She released three books I adored this year, but two I’m going to spotlight because they were published by Razorbill/Penguin Canada.
The first is How to Curse in Hieroglyphics, Lesley’s co-write with Jonathan Llyr.
What I loved about How to Curse in Hieroglyphics is the positive energy it instills in the reader. For every negative incident that happens in the story, Cheryl and Tweed always find ways to solve the problem and try their best to make the right decisions. They are written so realistically, despite the film-ish dream worlds they concoct. Did I meant they come up with the best plotlines and solutions ever? Plus the humor is beyond brilliant, and both Livingston and Llyr really, in a lot of ways, show that they understand the mind of twelve year old children. This book is a complete must-read for any middle grade fans, and if my mini-pitch doesn’t convince you, may be my review will? I distinctively remember giving it all the stars.
The second work by Lesley Livingston I wanted to share might be one folks may have forgotten about because it released so early, is Every Never After, the follow up to Once Ever Never.
I feel like this series is completely under-appreciated and valued, meanwhile it has so much to offer its readers. There’s time travel, Arthurian history, cute boys, craziness. What is not to love? Clare and Allie are fabulous characters who actually have an awesome friendship. They actually care about each other, are insanely supportive, and simply right for each other in a lot of ways. While the backdrop of this series is nutty and wonderful, its their relationship that truly made me love the second novel over the first. This book didn’t suffer from a middle book syndrome and it had me beyond excited for the release of the final book.
And there you have it! These are two books that I felt went a little under the radar and just happened to be released by the same author. Lesley also writes the Starling series (Harper Teen) and has another trilogy called Wonderous Strange (Harper Teen), which I have sadly not read yet.
I hope you enjoyed this little author and publisher spotlight, and I hope 2014 continues to be a strong year for readers, writers and publishers alike.