Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Book Review Club (February 2013)

HAPPY FOUR YEAR ANNIVERSARY TO US! Yup. We're your basic group of book junkies. We've been meeting online and reviewing books for FOUR, yes that's QUATRE, yes that's CUATRO, years! Talk about a lot of reading and reviewing. Whew. Kind of blows the mind.

Moving right along...What holiday is almost upon us? Valentine's Day. And what goes great with chocolates and flowers? A good book, of course. Be sure to click through the links under my review. They'll take you to everyone else's reviews. Happy reading!

OUT by Laura Preble (young adult)

In a nutshell: OUT takes place in a world where parallels (same-sex couples) are the norm. Where perpendiculars (opposite-sex couples) are sent to rehab/torture camps.Where the gov't and the church are all powerful. Enter Chris Bryant, son of a well-known preacher. You guessed it. Chris falls in love with a girl. The girl falls in love with him. And now we've got a couple of criminals on the run.

Particular to this book: The author has received love mail and hate mail. It was tough getting OUT published traditionally, and she ended up self-publishing with her agent. Here's the amazon link to OUT. While I'm at it, here's the link to the author's website. Here's the link to the book trailer.

My thoughts: At the end of the day, this is a young-adult novel with a good strong voice. It's the story of a couple of teens who don't fit in, fall in love with each other, and take on the government and the church. Lots of conflict. Lots of twists. Good ending. And more than enough meat to make you think about how you treat others and how much you blindly follow the rules.

**check the comments section. The author just stopped by.**

Without further ado, here are the links to AMAZING AND THOUGHTFUL reviews! You don't want to miss them.

 Stacy Nyikos: GOBLIN SECRETS by William Alexander (middle grade)

 Alyssa Goodnight of the Writers' Road Less Traveled: THE SINISTER SWEETNESS OF SPLENDID ACADEMY by Nikki Loftin (middle grade)

Sarah Laurence: OUT OF NOWHERE by Maria Padian (young adult, contemporary)

 Staci of Life in the Thumb: THE FAULT IN OUR STARS by John Green (young adult)

 Patti Abbott: THE BLACKHOUSE by Peter May

Ellen Booraem of Freelance Ne'er-do-well: THE CASUAL VACANCY by J.K. Rowling

Stacy of The Cat's Meow: THE SNOW CHILD by Eowyn Ivey

Beth Yarnall: The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley (historical romance)

Linda McLaughlin: MAJOR PETTIGREW'S LAST STAND by Helen Simonson
                                INDIAN MAIDENS BUST LOOSE by Vidya Samsonn (Indian Chick Lit)

Linda McLaughlin AKA Lyndi Lamont: THE SCARLETTI CURSE by Christine Feehan (romance)        

Jenn Jilks of Cottage Country: FACELESS KILLERS by Henning Mankell (mystery)
                                                 IF LOOKS COULD KILL by Kate White (mystery)
                                                 THE DOULA by Bridget Boland

Note to Reviewers: Any errors (broken link, missed review, etc), just shoot me an email or leave a comment. Thank you so much for your reviews!


Jenn Jilks said...

Thanks, Barrie. Always fun finding out what others are reading and writing!!!!

Unknown said...

Has it really been four years? Wow. OUT sounds like a really interesting twist on the present. Intriguing...

Linda McLaughlin said...

Ugh, my review of The Scarletti Curse didn't appear as scheduled. It is up now. My apologies to all.

I can see why OUT is controversial and has drawn both love and hate mail. It would be interesting to know how the book came to be written.

Can't believe the group is four years old. Happy anniversary to us!

Barrie said...

Jennifer: I couldn't agree more. I end up reading lots of books that are reviewed within our club. Great resource!

Barrie said...

Stacy: It is an interesting and quite a departure from her YA series (The Queen Geek Social Club).

Barrie said...

Linda: I think we're at a disadvantage here on the west coast when it comes to checking if posts went up, etc. I usually set my post for the wee hours (today it was for 5 am), but it's kind of silly because it's not as if I'd be up and online to check if all posted smoothly.

How did OUT come to be written? That's a good question. I think I'll email the author and ask her.

lpreble said...

HI Barrie, Linda, and all the readers at sea!
The question about how OUT was born is interesting. I am a Gay Straight Alliance advisor at my school, and a PFLAG mom, so although I'm not gay, I've spent a lot of time with people in that world. I've seen how being ostracized, dismissed, or deprived of basic rights affects people at a basic level. That started me to thinking: what is the way I was (straight) was the minority? What if how I felt about my husband was subject to government approval, and possible criminal action or abuse? Then I took it a step further and crafted the story into something that could speak also to the role of religion in the question.

Ultimately, what I hope I've achieved is a love story, but a love story that makes people think about how they perceive others. My greatest hope is that someone who is on the fence about LGBT civil rights might read it and feel, just a bit, what it would be like to be in that minority.

Barrie said...

Laura Preble!!! Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing with us!

Sarah Laurence said...

Yeah, Happy 4 to us! A big thank you to you.

What a cool premise for OUT! I'm disappointed that traditional publishers weren't willing to take the risk with it and pleased to hear that her agent helped her self publish.

Alyssa Goodnight said...

Four years?? Crazy! And I've been with you since the beginning... ;)

This book sounds good--interesting, unique, and tense. Thanks for the review!

Sarah Laurence said...

I just discovered that if you're on Kindle prime you can borrow OUT for free, which I've done. Having once written a novel that was considered too controversial to publish myself, it's wonderful to see this one in print through self publishing.

Laura, I'm pleased to hear that you are a GSA advisor and this book came out of empathy.

Ellen Booraem said...

Four years! Hard to believe. And so many good books!

This novel sounds wonderful--I LOVE the premise. It is exactly the kind of perspective we need to turn our heads around, although I'm sure it's primarily a good read, not a polemic.

David Cranmer said...

4! Happy Birthday!