Wednesday, May 2, 2012
Some of you no doubt remember that I am a HUGE YA Fiction fan. As in, it comprises 90% of my recreational reading. I get a lot of e-mails asking for more recommendations, but of course it always helps to compare notes so I know what you've already read and liked.
So, for the purposes of this post, I'm going to assume you've read and liked The Hunger Games series. Not necessarily LOVED them, but at least liked them. Good? Good.
Now, what should you read next?
Well, if you haven't already, I'd start with these:
It's, er, a lot more exciting than I'm making it sound, though. Honest.
You guys know I love Pierce's work, and Beka Cooper is one of her most kick-ass heroines to date. C'mon, she's the fantasy world's equivalent of a beat cop. She and Katniss are cut from the same cloth, kick-assingly speaking, although Beka has a better cat and is a bit more likeable in her romantical leanings. (You know what I'm talking about, HG fans.)
Oh, and John is telling me to make sure I mention how much he loved this book, too. So, there you have it: two made-up words and a recommendation from John. You just can't beat that.
I read this book several years ago, and loved it. In fact, here's an old review I wrote for it:
Maybe it's because I grew up watching the Martian Chronicles, but I love the whole last-person-on-earth concept. This takes that premise and combines it with some action-packed adventures, fascinating yet believable characters, a smidge of romance, and a somewhat bizarre ending. That ending has me wondering if I'll enjoy the sequel(s) as much, since it was an unexpected twist from your typical sci-fi, but I'm looking forward to reading them regardless.
So, again, some similar Hunger Games-like survival scenarios with teen characters. Good stuff. (And I still need to look up that sequel!)
This one is such a classic that if you *haven't* read it yet I'm going to look at you quite sternly over my glasses. Don't make me do that. I mean, I don't even know where my glasses are.
The premise doesn't sound at all relatable - a six-year-old boy genius is taken to a space school to learn war tactics - but the story will suck you in almost immediately. Plus, the zero-G fight sequences are some of the best action scenes I've ever read. Seriously. I never though fight scenes could be awesome until I read this book. (Well, except for the naked shower fight. That was more awkward than awesome.) So, yeah: kids fighting to the death plus some of the best sci-fi writing in history. READ IT.
It wasn't until a few months ago that I realized the author of The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins - is also the same author who wrote Gregor the Overlander, another of my favorite books. Gregor is written for a younger audience than Hunger Games, and is a vastly different storyline, but if you like Collin's writing then you should definitely check it out.
The story follows Gregor, a boy from the present day, who falls through a grate into a vast underworld on the brink of war. It's fantasy at its purest form, with talking bats and giant cockroaches and plenty of adventures, so if you have kids definitely read this one with them. (And if you love it, there are four or five more books in the series, which are also excellent.)
So there you have it! Here's hoping at least a few of these titles might be new to you. And if you're looking for even more YA fantasy recommendations from your fellow Epbot readers, go check out the comment section on this post; it's chock full of titles and reviews. Every now and then I go back there myself and make a new list of books to read.
Ok, guys, your turn: what should *I* be reading next? (And for the record: I did love The Hunger Games, but I hated the series' ending. Too abrupt! Not enough closure! Can I get a witness?!)
UPDATE: By all means tell me your thoughts on Hunger Games, guys, but try to keep 'em spoiler-free, k?
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