Monday, December 22, 2014

8 Terrible Titles


THIS COULD BE A SCENE IN MY WIP, I'LL SHAVE YOUR EYEBROWS.
PHOTO BY AKINORI ITO (VIA)
I was tagged by Katy Upperman to participate in the hilariously awesome “Terrible Titles” blog hop. She’s the author of the gripping Stare Out the Windshield (you can see her seven other terrible titles here).

Here’s how it works: Writers scroll through their manuscript and stop in random places. Whatever words/phrase the cursor lands on becomes one of eight terrible titles.

My current WIP, which I’m only halfway through drafting, is about a group of teens searching for a rumored treasure on Blackbird Island. I’ve been calling it Island WIP in my head, but now I have eight ready-made titles to choose from:
  1. A Very Tidy Kisser
  2. I’ll Shave Your Eyebrows
  3. I’m Cheapest In the Summer
  4. Worse Than Dirty Undies
  5. A Bite of Pop-Tart
  6. Making War With Acorns
  7. Stooped With Shame
  8. A Fantastic Dismissal

Honestly, I can’t see I’ll Shave Your Eyebrows as anything but a bestseller. I’m going to tag Alice, Jaime Morrow, and Liz Parker. May their titles be as terrible as mine.


Winners!
Thank you to everyone who participated in the 2014 YA Superlatives Blogfest. I’m sure you’re curious about the giveaway, so here it goes: The winners are Rachel at Beauty and the Bookshelf, Elodie Nowodazkij, Nicole at Quality Fangirls, and Sophie L. And thank you to Kelsey Macke, who’s donated her novel, Damsel Distressed, to a bonus winner: Sarah Chafin. Please contact Katy Upperman at katy[dot]upperman[at]live[dot]com!


Thursday, December 18, 2014

2014 YA Superlative Blogfest: Best In Show



Well, guys, this is it. The very final day of the 2014 YA Superlative Blogfest. To everyone who’s participated, it’s been so fun reading about your favorite books. If you’re just joining in, so far I’ve picked my favorites for Head of the Class, Popularity Contest, and Elements of Fiction. And today we’re wrapping it up with Best In Show. 

As always, click book titles to head to the Goodreads page. And now, here are my favorites:



FAVORITE COVER
Shocker: I’m a huge fan of the typography trend in YA book cover design. Also a win in my book: gorgeous illustrations and simple or delicate covers. For more of my favorite book covers (for children’s and adult books), go here.


CUTEST COUPLE
I’m not going to say anything about these couples because to do so would be to reveal some major spoilers. But let’s just say each book has a couple I’m 100 percent behind.



MOST LIKELY TO SUCCEED (OR, PICK A PRINTZ WINNER)
Like I said, I haven’t even read this yet, but based on Jandy Nelson’s writing and storytelling in The Sky Is Everywhere, I’m sure this one’s a Printz just waiting to happen.



MOST LIKELY TO MAKE YOU MISS YOUR BEDTIME (BOOK YOU JUST COULDN’T PUT DOWN!)

To be honest, every book makes me miss my bedtime. Once I’m sucked in, that’s it. The Man is not fond of this character flaw. I do remember this particular exchange one night while reading Kiss of Deception:
Me: Just one more chapter.
The Man: Fine. Tell me when you’re done.
Me: …
The Man: How’s that chapter coming?
Me: What huh? Chapter? Oh…it’s coming…
The Man: Long chapter, huh?
Me: Oh yeah, at least 50 pages…



BEST REPEAT PERFORMANCE (YOUR FAVORITE SEQUEL OR FOLLOW-UP)
Of the sequels I read, so many were really great. This was tops.



FAVORITE FINALE OR END OF SERIES NOVEL
I’ve been a fan of Warner since Shatter Me and especially after Destroy Me, so I was happy by the way this wrapped up with a happy ending for him. I was also a fan of Juliet’s transformation from a somewhat whiny girl in the first books to someone who stood up for herself at the end.



ROMANCE MOST WORTHY OF AN ICE BATH
Um, yeah.



BREAKOUT NOVEL (YOUR FAVORITE BOOK BY A DEBUT AUTHOR)
I won’t reiterate what I’ve already said about this book, but it was a surprisingly great read with a new setting and an insanely likable main character.



BEST OLD-TIMER (YOUR FAVORITE READ OF THE YEAR, PUBLISHED BEFORE 2014)
One of my favorite reads this year was the Seven Realms series by Cinda Williams Chima. I devoured these books one after the other for the incredible world-building, three-dimensional characters, romance I was rooting for, and great plot. I highly recommend this series. And—bonus!—all of the books have been published so there’s no wait for the next in the series.



BOOK MOST LIKELY TO MAKE A GROWN MAN CRY
This one surprised me, mostly because no one was dying of cancer, and cancer books always make me bawl. But there were a few scenes where the main character, Michael, loses all that’s important to him, and they were heartbreaking. He exhibits such emotional restraint, which made me feel ALL THE EMOTIONS.



MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE (BEST BOOK YOU DIDN’T THINK YOU’D LIKE, BUT TOTALLY DID)
I’ll admit: I was a bit skeptical because, you know, cousins. And not How We Live Now cousins, who meet for the first time as strangers, but known-you-all-my-life cousins. It’s an icky subject, but I was surprised by how much I liked this story.



MOST CREATIVE USE OF A LOVE TRIANGLE
Here’s how it works: Our main character, Lia, flees to a village where she meets two men: the prince whose marriage she fled from and an assassin sent to kill her. She doesn’t know who’s who, and even though we get chapters from both the prince’s and assassin’s POVs, we don’t know who’s who. Basically brilliant.




SLEEPER HIT (BOOK YOU FOUND SO AWESOME YOU WISH IT HAD BEEN HYPED MORE)
How’s this for two books that are completely different but both worth a read? First, there’s Creed, which only just came out and is a fantastic horror novel. Then there’s Magnolia, which has a great romance and Deep South setting you’ll be able to feel.



FAVORITE OUTLIER (YOUR FAVORITE MIDDLE GRADE OR ADULT 2013 BOOK)
I beta read an incredible Freaky Friday–like manuscript (oh hello, Alison Miller), which got me craving another body swap story. The Swap is a middle grade novel about two former friends who wake up one day in each other’s bodies, and it’s funny and adorable.



BOOK THAT’S READY-MADE FOR HOLLYWOOD
I’m happy when my favorite books head to Hollywood, but when those books are gorgeously written, I worry the movie might not capture a lot of what made me love the story in the first place (I’m thinking of you, Scorpio Races). Other books seem perfect for the big screen, like Bright Before Sunrise, which is a YA Before Sunrise. There have been two more movies with the same setup, so it’s safe to say this book would do well as a movie.


First, link to your Best In Show post, below. Then enter our giveaway, below. We’ll pick four winners who will each receive one of our favorite 2014 YA novels. 






What 2014 book do you think would work well as a TV show or movie?