Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Let's hear it for YA books with male main characters!

Since beginning my new WIP with a teenage male main character, I took the advice of a trusted writing friend and picked up Paper Towns by John Green for some killer first person writing. With what else, but a teenage male main character. Awesome book. Yes, Jamie you were spot on with this recommendation, thank you! I've heard the name John Green on twitter, review blogs, etc. but I'd never read any of his work. After picking up Paper Towns I can safely say I plan on getting my hands on the rest of his books, because it was that good.

Green's story of Quentin, a seventeen-year-old who has a less than predictable end to his senior year, kept me on the edge of the seat, but not in the high action fantasy sort of way I'm used to. It was so completely believable I had to remind myself it was a novel and not a memoir. The fact that one of the key words on Amazon for this book is 'beer swords' tells you there is a healthy dose of humor in place. I kept thinking "oh, so this is how teenage boys talk," or "eww, do they really act this way?" Green captures so much of what high school is and does it brilliantly considering he allows us a glimpse into a diverse cast of high school stereotypes, like the band geek, the popular bitchy girl, the jock, and more. I highly recommend Paper Towns for a read that has no bells and whistles, it's just a really great story with characters you want to hang out with and laugh with, and even slap around once or twice.

For more fun info about Paper Towns and John Green's other books visit his site here.

I'd heard a lot about The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan so I decided to pick that up at the bookstore as well. As you can guess this too has a teenage male MC. (more research) Oh, Nick! While it's not written in first person, Ms. Rees Brennan had no problem snatching me up and carrying me away into Nick's mind. I thought I had him figured out with his dark emotionless behavior. But, how very wrong I turned out to be. And that's just one of the reasons I loved The Demon's Lexicon. Sarah's ability to tell a story that twisted and turned me upside down at the last minute. As I've mentioned before, I am very difficult person to trick when it comes to movies and books, but she got me. And, good. Of course I won't say any more on that aspect since I refuse to give the least bit of information away.

I'm a huge fan of Young Adult Urban Fantasy so I had high expectations of the Demon's Lexicon, especially with that beautiful creature on the cover, and in no way was I disappointed. There is so much I can say about this story, the wicked and dark world, the characters who you know and trust only to discover they too have secrets, ultimately though you just plain need to read this book if you're a fan of any kind of fantasy. And better yet, it's the first in a trilogy. Be still my heart. There is nothing sweeter than a kick ass series.

To read more about The Demon's Lexicon and Sarah Rees Brennan herself click here.


ElanaJ said...

I so need to read both of those. I've had them on my list for a long time. Have you read 13 Reasons Why? That's a male MC in first person. It's by Jay Asher and I've got in en route to my house as I type. :)

ali said...


I haven't heard of either of those books (I'm so NOT in the know) but BOTH sound like they're right up my alley! Thanks!

And is that the guy from Smallville on the cover of The Demon's Lexicon? I heart him. He's smokin'. (is that term out dated. did i just show my age? sigh)

Rebecca L Sutton said...

Yes ladies, you indeed to read these two books. The really are that good. I don't post about ALL the books I read but these are two I strongly recommend.

Elana - I haven't read 13 Reasons Why yet, but I do want to. My reading pile is just too big to add any just yet but I'm anxious to see what you think.

Ali - Oh I'm not really in the know either but I'm thrilled I picked these two up. Better late then never! Ohh I don't think that's the same guy but I totally see the resemeblence. Hottie is right!

Thanks for the comments. ; )

Lisa and Laura said...

I've heard that Food, Girls and Other Things I Can't Have is supposed to be a great "boy book" too.

I thought The Demon's Lexicon had some good twists at the end, no?

Mariah said...

have you read any of John Green's other books? If not you definitely should!

Mariah said...

Also a good series is the Alex Rider series. I cannot remember the author at the moment but they were really good.

Rebecca L Sutton said...

Thank you for the additional suggestions Mariah and Lisa & Laura. I love hearing about other books I'm not familiar with, especially "boy books!" Too many fabulous books, not enough time!

~Jamie said...

What can I say? I'm always right!

WindyA said...

I have both these books on my to-read list too. Thanks for the review.

And like Elana, I have 13 Reasons Why on there too.

For more "boy" books, have you read Nick Hornby? He's got humor and realism too.