New Favorite Author, More Lloyd Alexander, True Crime, Hatchet

I had a great week in reads, after a miserable stretch of books that weren’t worth my time at all.

And then I read All The Rage and the world is a better place because Courtney Summers is writing books. My love for Laurie Halse Anderson‘s Speak is epic and legendary, and Summers mines a similar vein (rape victim turned outcast) and makes it completely her own. So of course I completely freaked when I saw that they were interviewed together. YA authors can be heroes and these two women are fighting the good fight.

Immediately afterwards I read My Sunshine Away, about a Baton Rouge neighborhood torn apart when a girl is raped by an unknown assailant. Told from the point of view of one of the suspects, the lyrical prose preserves the mystery while effectively building suspense.

Also in YA reads, I caught up with Hatchet, which came out 25 years ago. The Cockeysville library must not have carried it because I would’ve eaten this one alive. I found out about it thanks to this great blog as well as some recommendations by some of the kids in my life.

I’ve been reading through the Chronicles of Prydain with my 7 year old, and this week I finished book 3, The Castle of Llyr. I thought for sure I’d read all of these books back when I was a kid, but apparently I never got past book two, because all of this was new to me. While fantasy storytelling has evolved so much since these books were written, I was reminded that my daughter is experiencing all of these tropes for the very first time, and it’s so much fun to watch the power of a classic story work its magic on her.

True crime got me through many a long and lonely train ride back when I was commuting from NYC to central PA to teach a weekly college writing class. So when I heard about The Journalist and the Murderer, an investigation of the scandal surrounding the discredited work Fatal Vision, I had to check it out. The book is a serious investigation into the ethics of journalism, and a fascinating dissection of how exactly things went so wrong. It’s not for everyone but it was definitely for me.

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