just read: Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel

IMG_5528 Wow. Just… wow.

Read this novel all in one sitting, so attached to several of the main characters, even the, well, I don’t want to give anything away. There are some nice surprises in this story.

Here are a few not-so-revealing passages that struck me…

I was heartbroken. I threatened almost every country at the conference with whatever military capabilities Algeria had. My other group members had to appease everyone afterward by offering to export…

Lisa manipulates mannequin arms into lewd positions whenever she has the chance.

I’m always going to think of Ms. Taylor as one of my first big crushes, albeit a teacher crush, but now she’s more like a friend. She does look superhot, thought.

Hedgehog’s Dilemma—Just Read: Say What You Will

Say What You Will, cover“WHY DID YOU APPLY FOR THIS JOB?”

“Because I wanted it. I thought helping someone else might take me out of my head for a while.”

Amy’s head bent down as she typed for a minute. Then she rethought what she’d written, pushed delete, and typed something else. “THAT’S EXACTLY HOW I FEEL.”

There’s so much packed into this recently released novel, it’s like Stargirl meets Juno… meets Beautiful Life? Regardless of what this engrossing work of YA lit reminds me of, Say What You Will feels uniquely epic in the sweep of emotions and situations it quickly draws the reader into. While the characters and their situations can be very, um, adolescent, the insights they offer into human thoughts and needs are perhaps timeless; sometimes we end up saving ourselves by trying to save those we care about; sometimes silence, whether easy or hard to break, can corrosively persist between us if we default to passivity; sometimes we’ll push away those care about by trying to draw them closer.

If you spot this in a bookstore or have a moment to use Amazon’s “look inside” feature, give the first few pages a read. After I did, I had to read the whole thing and wound up being taken by it to unexpected places, including back to my alma maters.

When this book is turned into a major motion picture, Allison Weiss‘s “I Was An Island” must be in the soundtrack.

Just Read: Every Day

Every Day, last page

Yesterday, I finished David Levithan’s Every Day, a shiver running through me when I realized I’d finished reading the last sentence. Wow. This is the exactly kind of book that reaffirms to me the power and importance of literature, raising questions like, “What is a person?” and “What constitutes someone’s identity?”

As the narrator (don’t worry, you find this out in the first chapter or two)  inhabits the life of different person each day (as if through some kind of mind/psyche transference), we get to know this main character as she/he/it gets to know the people whose circumstances she/he/it is suddenly very deeply in, along with one particular, special person. The descriptions and plot are engrossing, feeling remarkably real and relatable, if you can suspend disbelief and the book’s basic premise which I readily could—the writing was that good.

If you’re looking for a new work of fiction, give this a shot. At least read a few pages if you see it in a library of bookstore. You might become just as quickly caught up in it as I was.