Category Archives: Teen Books

Mosquitoland by David Arnold

mosquitolandThis is my latest Kindle acquisition: book #615 on the device. Previously, it had been residing on my Amazon Wishlist for many months, because, I believe, I read an article that listed it as one of the funniest novels of 2015. Beyond that, I don’t know much about it.

It’s described as a Young Adult book, which is fine by me. At this point in our history, YA should not scare away any not-so-young adult readers. There’s a lot of greatness under that heading. Don’t let snobbery or prejudice block you from greatness.

Plus, there’s a School Library Journal review of the book on the Amazon page that suggests that some of the humor is insensitive. Yes! Insensitive and inappropriate humor is, needless to say, a big-time positive.

And there’s this blurb, which sealed the deal for me: “…reminiscent of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off if done by John Hughes with Jack Kerouac.”

But, the real reason I finally pulled the trigger on it was price, of course. All roads lead to cheapness. Yesterday, as I was scrolling through my outrageously bloated Wishlist, I noticed the price on the Kindle version had been reduced (temporarily, I’m sure) to $1.99. It’s still there, as I type.

And that’s the secret: do the research, try to identify all the good books, put them on your Wishlist, and wait for a temporary price-drop. It’s how a person ends up with 615 amazing books on their Kindle. Well, that and a light dusting of mental problems.

The hunt continues!

DC Trip by Sara Benincasa

DC TripI knew nothing about this book or its author, but it was recommended to me by a creepy Amazon algorithm that seems to know what I’m thinking, my moods, and all about that terrible thing in August of 1979 with the beanbag chair, etc.

I liked the cover, and the $1.99 price was right in my wheelhouse. But it was this customer review that sealed the deal for me:

This book was seriously hilarious. I hope they make it into a movie and somehow make the movie as good as the book. D.C. Trip is full of horrible teenage girls, underage drinking, accidental drug use, public bathroom BJs, many f-words, and all kinds of inappropriate behavior, which is part of what makes it so good. It made me wish I was a teenager again so I could get in the kind of trouble that makes a great story to tell the grandkids but doesn’t do any lasting damage.

Sounded like my kind of thing! And at two bucks… sign me up. I just started reading it last night, and was alone in my silent living room laughing my ass off. Like a mental patient. I’m only about 15% into it, but can already recommend this one. It’s well-written, hilarious, and kinda filthy. Perfect!

Liars, Inc. by Paula Stokes

Liars Inc coverThis is the latest addition to my Kindle. I love the cover — it’s about as close to perfect as it gets.

It’s what drew my initial interest, to be truthful. But this review sealed the deal: Max is so well-drawn it’s hard not to be completely sympathetic to his predicament…the author twists and turns at all the right moments. Even the keenest mystery buffs will be hard-pressed to predict the book’s finale, which packs quite the emotional and physical punch. Captivating to the very end.

This is a “dark and twisted psychological tale that will keep readers guessing, ” according to the official description. It’s published by HarperCollins, and is ostensibly for young adults. But, at this point, that only means its main character is a teenager. Age of the reader means little. Modern YA novels should never be dismissed by adults.

And look at that cover! Is that not great? Somebody deserves a raise. Today’s price doesn’t hurt, either: $1.99 for Kindle. I’m looking forward to this one.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Hunger Games coverThis is another book I haven’t read yet, but feel fairly confident in recommending. Especially at today’s price of $2.99 for Kindle.

It’s not my kind of thing, generally speaking. I don’t usually go in for swords and arrows, and characters running through the woods in animal pelts. Ya know? But, people I admire rave about this thing, because of the storytelling and writing. So I’ll probably give it a shot some day. It’s sitting patiently on my Kindle, waiting for me.

There are almost 25,000 reviews of this book at Amazon, and the first Harry Potter only has 10,000. That’s a phenomenon, right there.

If you’re interested, now’s a good time to buy. And if you’ve read it, what are your thoughts?