Thursday, March 13, 2008

Book Blast

I have a stack of books that needs reviewing. Not the metaphorical stack that I always have, but a real stack, right next to me. We'll see how many I get through before I get to class!

London Calling Edward Bloor

As with most Bloor, the plot is pretty dense and complicated, which makes it a little hard to explain.

Martin is a poor kid at a snooty rich school. He doesn't want to be there. After getting in a fight with the son of one of the school's heros (and financial benefactors) he decides to do an independent study from home for a semester.

When his grandmother dies, he is given an old radio that his grandfather had when he worked at the embassy in London during the Blitz.

Through that radio, Marin ends up traveling through time to the days of the blitz. What he sees there sparks research and discoveries that seemed impossible and is about the blow the lid off several family secrets, for several different families.

The time travel bit sounds a bit hokey, I know, but Bloor is a master. I like the hard look he gave the Blitz on many different levels. It's a fascinating book that I couldn't put down.

Confessions of a Serial Kisser Wendelin Van Draanen

Evangeline is sick and tired of moping after her parent's divorce. Inspired by a romance novel found under her mother's bed, she is on a quest to find the perfect Crimson Kiss.

So, she gives herself a make-over and starts kissing every guy in sight. Drama ensues.

Overall, it was a nice book about finding yourself and how you won't be crimson without some attraction. There was friend drama that I didn't fully understand, because there were some serious flaws in that relationship even before Evangeline starts going kiss-crazy.

It's also interesting how it's only about kissing. Kissing is taken very seriously in this book and where I can see why randomly grabbing guys and making out with them will damage your rep (because people think if you're willing to do that in the cafeteria, you're willing to do a whole lot more elsewhere) but at the same time, it's high school. Also, a guy who smokes pot is A TOTAL DRUGGIE AND THAT'S BAD BAD BAD BAD. The whole thing is a little... innocent. (I can understand not wanting to date a pothead, but... he's not an ax-murderer.)

Out in May 2008.

Life Sucks Jessica Abel, Gabe Soria, Warren Pleece

You know I love First Second.

Anyway, being a vampire today in LA totally sucks. All Dave wanted was a night job at the convenience store, but who knew his boss was a vampire? And he made Dave a vampire, and now Dave is bound to his Master, spending all night every night at the convenience store. It doesn't help with the day shift guy is late and Dave has to rush to make it home before the sun comes up.

There's surfer god Wes, who was such a bad employee, Dave's master rides him even harder, which Wes just loves to rub in Dave's face.

Then there's Rosa, the goth girl who hangs out at the juice bar by the sore. Beautiful Rosa who seems to maybe like Dave. And Wes. She also thinks being a vampire would be awesome. How can Dave tell her how much it totally sucks?

Well thought out and funny, the graphics have a pretty dark, muted palate that fit the all-night all-the-time setting.

Look for it at the end of April

Barb and Dingbat's Crybaby Hotline Patrick Jennings

One afternoon in 1975, Barb calls Jeff and dumps him on behalf of her friend, Viv. As it turns out, Jeff likes girls. He's not that picky, or that observant, he just likes girls.

Throughout a series of phone calls, we see Jeff as the ultimate clueless guy, but Barb is willing to help him. Maybe.

Funny and true to all of those random phone calls made and received in junior high and high school, the quick read of phone call transcripts makes is a good pick for reluctant readers.

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