Monday, June 29, 2009

Belated BEA Recap: Part 2: YA Editor's Buzz

I told myself I wouldn't blog about anything else until I finally got around to finishing and posting Part 2 of my Belated BEA Recap. Well, here it is!

Probably the coolest part of BEA (which now was so long ago that it almost seems like a dream) was attending the Young Adult Editor's Buzz and getting the scoop on (and ARCs of) the biggest fall novels from the folks at the publishing houses who've already read what's coming and know what's going to be big.

Six editors were on the dais and each described one upcoming release. Then afterwards, they had a chance to mention other titles both from their publishing house and others that they were really excited about. Everything they mentioned sounded awesome, and I was lucky enough to get a few (but not all) of the ARCs before they seized upon by other hungry ARC hunters.

But onto what all the buzz was about…

Lips Touch: Three Times by Laini Taylor (Arthur A. Levine Books) – Due out October 1st, Lips Touch contains three supernatural short stories, each of which revolves around a single kiss. I wasn’t lucky enough to nab an ARC, but this one sounds like it’ll suck you in and be hard to put down (or maybe Arthur Levine the man is just really good at marketing). Liz B. at Tea Cozy did get an ARC and has already raved about Lips Touch on her blog.

The Devil’s Kiss by Sarwat Chadda (Disney/Hyperion) – The first in a trilogy, The Devil’s Kiss is Sarwat Chadda’s debut novel about a girl who has often unwillingly sacrificed her normal teenage life to train and become the youngest and only female member of the Knight’s Templar. I’ve only read the first few pages thus far, but it sounded really dark and suspenseful from the booktalk. I’m thinking this might be a good recommendation for those who enjoyed Graceling and maybe The Hunger Games. Due out September 1st.

The Maze Runner by James Dashner (Delacorte Press for Young Readers) – Think Lord of the Flies meets the movie Cube meets anything ever written by M. Night Shymalan. My husband is reading this one right now, and I’ll hopefully be getting to it soon. It sounds really good, and again, edge of your seat, nail bitingly suspenseful! The premise: Every 30 days, a new boy arrives in “the Glade,” transported by an elevator which he doesn’t remember getting on. Not only doesn’t he remember how he got there, but he can’t remember anything about his previous life, except for his first name. Each morning, stone doors open onto a maze. Each night, they close tight. One day, a girl appears from the elevator bringing a disturbing message.

Refresh, Refresh by Danica Novgorodoff’s (First Second Books) – This one sounds like it might be a tear-jerker. Based on the award-winning short story by Benjamin Percy, Refresh, Refresh is artist Danica Novgorodoff's graphic interpretation, of the story of three boys about to graduate high school who are trying to figure out their future as they wait for their fathers, who are serving in the Iraq War, to come home. Anxiously awaiting communication from their distant fathers, they continually refresh their e-mail again and again. Look for it at the end of September.

The Sweetheart of Prosper County by Jill S. Alexander (Feiwel & Friends) – Another debut and another potential tear-jerker. The story centers around Austin and her quest to wind up on the hood of a pick-up truck as the “Sweetheart of Prosper County.” She owns a rooster named Charles Dickens and from what I’ve heard there’s a scene with her, Charles Dickens and some fishing that is particularly emotional. It sounds like it is in turns sweet, silly and sad, and it’s most definitely on my TBR pile. On September 1st it’ll make it’s way to your library bookshelf.

Viola in Reel Life by Adriana Trigiani (Harper Collins Children's Books) – Best-selling author Adriana Trigiani has decided to throw her hat into the YA ring with her first in a trilogy. As I understand it, this book, which hasn’t even been published yet, has already been turned into a screenplay and is in pre-production. A friend is borrowing it, and I haven’t had a chance to give it a read yet, but I remember something about her being fashionably different and going to boarding school, (maybe to experience “real life” since she’s a movie star?) and I typically LOVE boarding school books, as I see boarding school as this really cool environment where kids are tasked with being adults before they are really ready and all sorts of deep, meaningful experiences happen. My friends who’ve attended boarding school tell me it’s more about drinking, sneaking around, and awaiting care packages from parents. Alas, I’m still intrigued. Get it September 1st.

So, that’s a couple starts to trilogies and even more debuts, all of which sound like they’re going to be terrific reads. I’m very excited for September to roll around and bring the bounty of fall publishing releases. In the meantime, I’ll be working though the ARCs I have and picking up a few more at the ALA Conference, which kicks off in less than two weeks in good ol’ Chicago.


  1. Wow, these all sound great! I particularly want to read "Viola in Real Life", it sounds really good.

    Man, I am so going to BEA next year. Thank you, Alicia!

  2. Did they have the ARCs in piles at the front? Or how did it work?

  3. The ARCs were in boxes in the back of the room and then reps from the publishing houses were also handing out copies. There wasn't enough for everyone, though, which stunk!