Writing, Reading and Food.
Alright peeps, I’m a book nerd and proud of it. You know what I want for Christmas? Books. Books. And more books. And a GTR, but that’s probably not gonna happen. Unless you want to buy me one, and then click on the picture below. I also have a bridge to sell you. It’s in Brooklyn.
Anyway…Books are the best present for anyone. They smell nice. They look nice, and if you treat them nicely they won’t give you papercuts. So hold your breath no longer, here are my picks for your awesome book-giving holiday season!
If this image of the Sex and the City gals in any way reminds you of the recipient, boy have I got some books for you.
First up, Pretty Little Liars:
Consider the awesome book collection, TV series or both. Or, check out The Lying Game, also by Sara Shepard. Both series have a healthy dose of murder mystery and handbags. I love both of these series for their drama, excitement, and general teen angst.
Do you know someone who loves to play video games? Then RUSH by Eve Silver is a pretty safe bet. Teens are fighting against an alien invasion in a video-game style drama with a swoon-worthy love interest.
The Person who LOVES the Hunger Games
Divergent is the exciting series about choosing your destiny, and then taking that destiny by the horns when it doesn’t pan out. LOVED this series. I asked for the third book, Allegiant, for Christmas. Hint, hint, husband. HINT. Also, this will be a movie in April 2014, so we can see it all acted out on the big screen. Squee!
Your Teenaged Niece:
The Eve Trilogy is a fantastic, beautifully written series about a girl in post-apocalyptic Earth. It’s about courage, fear, and standing up for what’s right. Plus, author Anna Carey is super nice and always responds to my tweets, and is releasing an epilogue to the series soon!
I think another obvious but great choice is Beautiful Creatures. Why not treat the girl in your life to a book/movie combo?
I’ll also throw one more in this category. Try Legend by Marie Lu. EVERYONE, and I mean everyone, loves it. So much fun and with a totally hot love interest, teens (and adult women!) will love the fast-paced excitement of the series.
The Person who says they hate reading.
Oh, you know them. That person who’s like, “I hate reading, but I’m sooo caught up on Entourage.” This is how we know we’ve failed our children, America.
So, I give you the most obvious choice: Harry Potter. But not just any Harry Potter, oh ho no (finger wag). The brand-spanking new, commemorative edition with new covers by Kazu Kibuishi. Behold:
The spines of the book series make out this Hogwarts castle when put together.
Oh, sorry, I’m back. I just fangirled and passed out from excitement. I may or may not have already bought this set simply for the covers.
Back to what I was saying. Harry Potter is the quintessential set of books for anyone who doesn’t like to read. They start off easy and fun, and get deeper and darker as you go along. Rowling is a master of fiction. Readers won’t be able to help falling in love with Harry, Hogwarts, and the wizarding world.
The Walking Dead Fan
Does your friend or loved one have a problem? Is that problem watching zombies get hacked apart all the freakin’ time? Did anyone else have a heart attack watching the mid-season finale?! GAH! Judith, where are YOU?!!!
Okay folks, here you go. If you like The Walking Dead, you’ll love James Dashner’s The Maze Runner trilogy.
There are mazes, zombies, government bad guys, lost loves and everything in between. Seriously, this series in fantastic.
For the Guy Who LOVED the Matrix
Let’s throw in another Dashner recommendation because he’s just so darn good.
I loved this book, and can’t wait for the next one. It’s a cross between The Matrix and Inception, both of which I absolutely love and watch over and over again.
I’ll also add another book, great for guys and girls. Incarceron by Catherine Fisher is a freakin’ masterpiece. The prison is alive, folks, and it’s PISSED. Also want to give a shout out to her other works, including Obsidian Mirror.
For your Dad:
Is your Dad into old-school fantasy or sci-fi? Then pick up a copy of Orson Scott Card’s classic Ender’s Game.
It’s also a movie with famous people like Harrison Ford. The book is fantastic, and I humbly suggest you get yourself a copy while you get one for dear ol’ dad.
For the Girl (or guy) who LOVES Comic Books or Superheroes:
Amelia Kahaney’s The Brokenhearted is an exciting, superhero-esque romp through a Gotham-type metropolis full of dirty deeds. This book is a ballerina Batman combo, and really fun.
I’ll also add Cinder by Marissa Meyer. This is a great series about a cyborg named Cinder who gets caught up in an intergalactic war. Fun for any age! She’s also a super cool, local Seattle area author who is always really nice when the fangirls come out
The Nephew (AKA Hard to Shop For Teenaged Boy):
This is a great category, because I think there are so many good choices for guys (and girls!) to love. I’ll start with Neal Shusterman’s Unwind Dystology. WOW. Dark, dangerous, and enough to make you cry for your mommy, this series will make you question politics and public policy. In a future where abortion has been outlawed, unruly teens can be “unwound” for parts. Read the review here. This is heavy stuff, but really fantastic.
And last, but certainly not least, for the reader in your life who likes a bit of whimsy, I suggest Maggie Stiefvater’s The Raven Boys. Book two, The Dream Thieves, is also out. I cannot WAIT for the third book.
I’m working my way through the PLL series and LOVING it. If you can’t think of what to give someone for the holidays, consider this LONG and exciting series. I love getting into a world and staying there Plus, the books are pretty short and great to read between other, longer books.
Also, the show is super fun and full of drama-ful excitement and glamorous cast. It’s always fun to watch/read a series at the same time.
What’s it about? In the near future, Michael spends all of his time outside of school on the VirNet – a virtual reality community. But cyber-terrorist Kaine is gaining traction in the world that he loves so much, and the government needs Michael and his friends to find Kaine before he kills and tortures again. The only way to find Kaine is to follow The Path, a treacherous virtual reality journey that may actually mean real life and death consequences for Michael and his friends. Will Michael survive? And what is Kaine really hiding? Nothing is as it seems in in this cyber-thriller, described as a cross between Inception and The Matrix.
Should you read it? Well, clearly I’m a big Dashner fan (hello, Maze Runner!) but what really intrigued me about this book was the “cross between Inception and The Matrix” description. Between those two movies and one of my favorite authors, I knew this book would be a winner. Thankfully I was not disappointed, and spent way too much time not working and reading this book in two fascinating sittings. Fans of action packed, fast-paced thrillers will love Michael and his quest to stop the worlds worst cyber-terrorist from destroying the VirNet he loves, and possibly the world itself.
What’s it about? Anthem is a rich, private-schooled prima ballerina. When she meets Gavin, a gorgeous sweet-talker from the wrong side of town, she risks everything and falls madly in love. But when Gavin is kidnapped, Anthem is accidentally killed. When she’s brought back to life with a bionic heart, she sets her sights on rescuing her sweet lover. She’s faster and stronger than any human could possibly be, but tragedy strikes and she is left in a dark pit of despair. But with the help of Ford, her South Side boxer friend, and Serge, her parent’s driver and expert dark-side handler, Anthem might just have a shot at making things right. But will she be the anthem of a renewed Bedlam, or simply melt back into her easy high society life?
Should you read it? If you love superheroes, this is the YA book for you! Described as a Batman in pointe shoes, this twisty book will keep you guessing until the very last page. I had a great time keeping up with YA’s newest hero, Anthem Fleet. PS, what a great name, right?
What’s it about? Ender Wiggin is a genius. Not just an I’m-good-with-numbers genius, but the kind of strategic genius that would make Napoleon look like a housebound ninny. And he’s only six years old. The military wants to train him to lead humans in an epic war against invading aliens, and he just wants to be near his sweet sister Valentine and avoid his sinister older brother Peter. But he knows the world needs him, and so he travels to battle school for a chance to become the world’s next great military leader. But will Ender excel in the war games at school, and will he survive the jealous kids ready to kill him? He’ll have to play the game perfectly to find out.
Should you read it? Scott Card’s classic sci-fi book is a must read for those of you who loved Across the Universe by Beth Revis, Glow by Amy Kathleen Ryan, or really any other YA sci-fi book. And with a big Hollywood movie out in theaters, its the perfect time to read it. I loved it, and I think readers will too. Also note that James Dashner, author of the Maze Runner trilogy, cites this book as one of his inspirations.
So are you doing it? All the cool kids are NaNoWriMo is the month long exercise in torture that tons of people sign up for. The plan: Write a 50,000 word novel in a single month.
For real. But people do it! Marissa Meyer, author of Cinder, wrote the book for NaNoWriMo, and I’m sure many others have too. So come on, all the cool kids are doing it!
As for me, I’m finishing up my latest book. So my goal this month is to complete the manuscript. But to my friends who are out there, plugging away and banging their heads on their keyboards late into the night to meet their daily word count goal, I say cheers!
And hey, don’t forget to shower. Seriously.
What the books are about: In historic, peaceful Rosewood, four girls are harboring a secret. Ali, their best friend and ringleader has been missing for a year when her body turns up under the gazebo in her parent’s backyard. But who killed her? Her secret, way-too-old boyfriend? One of the girls? And with a mysterious stalker, only known as A, torturing each girl with their secrets that only Ali knew, they have to ask themselves: Is Ali still alive? And if not, is their stalker also her killer? Filled with sex, lies and betrayal, PLL is a crowd pleaser for murder mystery fans and chick-lit alike.
And hey, if you love getting into a story world and never leaving (Harry Potter, anyone?) this is the series for you. PLL author Sara Shepard has 15 books for you to fall in love with. The final book will be out next year.
These would make an excellent gift for the holidays! I know I want them
What’s it about? In the second book of the Raven Cycle, we reconnect with Blue, Gansey, Ronan and Adam. With the energy of the ley line awakened in Cabeswater, someone has begun sniffing around their southern town for a Graywaren – a thing that can help the dreamer take things from dreams and bring them into reality.
Should you read it? Of course! This series is phenomenal, packed with mystery, myths and a dusting of magic. Check out my review of book one, The Raven Boys, and get yourself into a cozy chair. You’ll want to read both books in one sitting! FYI, Maggie Stiefvater is also the author of the fantastic book, The Scorpio Races.
What’s it about? Once and Rise are books two and three of the Eve Trilogy by author Anna Carey. Be sure to read the book review of Eve if you haven’t yet! In Once, readers are whisked away into Califia, where Eve has finally found a home. But fate conspires against her, sending Eve and Arden into the world beyond the no-longer safe walls of Califia. Eve’s secret parentage leads us into book three, Rise, where the series comes to its shocking conclusion.
Should you read it? Yes! I was completely surprised that the Eve Trilogy turned out to be such a rush! Each book gets better than the last, sucking you in to long nights curled up on your easy chair. Obviously I don’t want to give out any spoilers, so I’ve kept the review brief. Rise is fast-paced and satisfying, and unlike other dystopics, I feel like I could read this series again. Love, love, love this series, and you will too. Read my review of Eve and get your copy today!