Friday, October 22, 2010

ARC Reviews: Two for the Price of One

It's been a while since I posted my last book review, a fact I only just noticed yesterday while I was pondering what to write my next post about.  That is not to say that I haven't been reading.  I have...in spades.  I just haven't been sharing with all you fantabulous peeps.  I know.  Bad Karlie!! Bad!!

So now, you get TWO reviews at once.  How cool is that?!?! So, no griping about not having anything to read.  I'm giving you gold here folks!

ADIOS NIRVANA by Conrad Wesselhoeft  (Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and will be available for purchase October 25, 2010) 

Summary: Since his brother's death, Jonathan's life has plummeted.  Once a prize-winning poet, on his way to being somebody, Jonathan wanders through existence in a vodka-soaked daze and is on track to repeat his junior year.  His friends (the Thicks) refuse to move onto senior status without him, so when the principal gives Jonathan an ultimatum: write the story of a WWII vet or flunk out, everyone rallies to help.

My take:  First off, I love YA books with male MC's.  They are so and far between that I literally jump right on them.  But, this one is very VERY well written.  The first page had me instantly immersed, not to mention the way Mr. Wesselhoeft paints such vivd images that you can't help be sucked in.  Not to give spoilers (I hate it when reviews give away integral details), I will say this: my favorite character in the book was not a human, but made up of wood and wire. "Ruby" the guitar was just so well done.   HOWEVER, while I enjoyed Jonathan's story tremendously, I have to say that the book seemed to end a little too abruptly.  Everything just seemed to tie up a little too quickly and too neatly for me to see it as realistic.  My other issue with the book is the Thicks' use of the word "faggy"  This may be a non-issue for some people, but odds are it will offend others.  I wasn't so offended that I put the book down, but I'm not easily deterred.  Just saying.  All in all, I'd highly reccommend this book to anyone...YAer or adult


KILLER HEAT by Brenda Novak (Published by Mira Heat and is available for purchase now)

The third in Novak's Department 6 series left me a little ambivalent.  Now, here I will admit that I am a huge Novak fan.  I love her books.  There's not much I can find that is wrong with them.  KILLER HEAT is pretty much the same as her others.  My one problem with this trilogy on a whole was the main character.  Fracesca irritated me quite a bit, and at times, I just wanted to strangle the childishness right out of her.  But, that was a tiny thing compared to the awesomeness with which Novak delivered this suspenseful novel.  So, if you're looking for a Killer mystery, pick up any one of Brenda Novak books, but if you ask me, her best ones are the "DEAD" books.  Just saying.

Stay tuned next week, folks for more reviews, ARC and otherwise!