I don't have words to talk about my love for Jerry Spinelli. He's not a hugely talked about YA author and most people only know him as the author of Stargirl - which is definitely one of my favourite books.
When I was in Paris, I spotted his name in the YA section of Shakespeare and Co and as it was a nice floppy paperback in a slightly larger size for only €11 I knew I had to buy it.
Cammie O'Reilly lives at the Hancock County Prison--not as a prisoner, she's the warden's daughter. She spends the mornings hanging out with shoplifters and reformed arsonists in the women's exercise yard, which gives Cammie a certain cache with her school friends.
But even though Cammie's free to leave the prison, she's still stuck. And sad, and really mad. Her mother died saving her from harm when she was just a baby. You wouldn't think you could miss something you never had, but on the eve of her thirteenth birthday, the thing Cammie most wants is a mom. A prison might not be the best place to search for a mother, but Cammie is determined and she's willing to work with what she's got.
I love YA. I don't know what it is about books aimed at this demographic but they are both simple yet complext. Easy reads yet powerful, emotional. YA doesn't try to hide. It is what it is - it's not afraid to be itself. Adult books scare me. They try too hard to fit in a niche and if they aren't cheesy reads that verge on cringey they're big literary masterpieces full of big words nobody ever uses in real life and people read just to say 'I've read that, I'm so intelligient'. (Says the girl reading Les Miserables).
There are, however, a few good books out there that aren't YA. There are adult books that get it right. They haven't fogotten their purpose of telling a story and providing entertainment, and those are the books I want to praise today
(Apologies for the lack of images in this post. I'm cooped up in bed in pain at the moment!)
There are so many books out there that it actually breaks my heart a little knowing I will NEVER be able to read them all. And I know, at least in my case, that because of this we try to make sure we only read books that are worthy of our time, that are great, exciting, fun... popular... Yep. Be honest - most of the books we buy and read are ones we've heard of. We'll pick up a book which a friend or blogger has recommended, with hype all over social media and with the marketing team behind it to enable it to be on the number one spot of a bestseller list before it's even gone to print over something that sounds decent but has a shoddy, generic cover and has probably only been read by a handful of people (who actually know the author).
We buy books we are guaranteed to love. If EVERYONE else loves it it has to be good, right? But what about all those other books on the shelf? The ones spine on, not face out with a review. That one book that you swear has been there since this store opened and nobody has ever touched. What about all these books that could be wonderful, but will never get the attention they deserve because they weren't written by Cassandra Clare, John Green or Jennifer Niven? So, without further ado - here is my list of the best books you've never read!
I love a good forbidden romance story, and Things We Know By Heart by Jessi Kirby is a very unique one of those! I picked this book up on a whim as the cover drew me in. At first it looks like a typical contemporary and the title just seems like a lovey-dovey romance - particularly with the cartoon heart -, but then you notice the background has actual, anatomical hearts and you start to wonder hmm, is this actually what it seems? It's not. And it is. But it's so much more.
I'm writing this post very last minute (as in 45 minutes before I would normally have it scheduled to publish!!) as this weekend was a nightmare; I took a migraine every day from Friday-Sunday and yesterday was just hectic with taking my gran to a hospital appointment, taking my mum to physio and then a trip to the cat cafe before dinner with a friend. I was on the go from 7am until about 11 at night. Needless to say, I'm exhausted! (Let's not mention I woke up at 7:30 this morning and then took a two hour nap at 10am..)
However, not even migraines and non-stop days - ooh Hamilton reference ;) - can get in my way of providing you with some content so here's a look at my Top 5 Must Read books!
Before I start, I have numbered these books from 5-1 but in all honesty that only reflects my feelings right now. Ask me tomorrow and I might tell you number 1 isn't even on the list anymore. I've tried to make this a list of books that are special to me. Every single one of these books has a hold on my heart in some way and although this is not an exhaustive list of my favourites, it's a list of books I think for one reason or another, everyone should read.
Now that is over, let's go!