Monday, May 23, 2011

YA Books...

Every once in awhile, I will pick up a young adult's some that I have recently read....

Right now, Hunger Games, is all the buzz.  It is set in a post-apocalyptic world, which is divided into 12 different districts.  When a child turns 12, they must put their name into a drawing for their district.  (When they turn 13, they put their name in twice...and so on.) Then, once a year, each district must draw two names from the bowl (one girl, one boy) and those children are sent to the Hunger Games where they compete against each other until one person is left standing.  Yep, the kids, ages 12-18, kill each other off to win.  The entire games is also shown on TV...a reality show for all to watch..but you never hear about the families watching their children get killed by another child.  The entire premise got my attention but as I was reading, I do know that there is a second book...which means that it is a bit predictable. 

I read this short story by Stephen King years ago and it is still one of my favorite short stories.
Ray Garraty--along with 99 other teen boys--has entered the Long Walk.  The Long Walk, is also a contest where the boys must walk at least 4 mph or they will get a warning.  after three warning, they are shot in the head. This continues until only one person is left standing. What this book has, that hunger games is lacking, are the stories that are told between the boys about their lives, why the boys choose to participate in the walk, interactions between the boys, changes in the characters as the walk progresses and stories about the young boys' families  You really get to know the characters...which made it even more intense. And instead of watching it on TV, people come out of their homes to watch the walkers pass by. This isn't a YA book, but it is what I think the Hanger Games was trying to be.

This is one of my favorite YA book. The Book Thief is a story narrated by Death...which explains why he needs or has to take a person with him. The main character, Leisel, and her brother are sent to live with foster parents in "Nazi" Germany during WW II. On the train ride to Germany, her brother dies and Leisel steals her first book.  As you know, during this time, books were burned and it was "illegal" to have a book, so Liesel begins to look for, finds and steals books...She also finds an unexpected book lover. It is a wonderful story and I would highly recommend it to all!

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