Brain-rinsing: not to be confused with brainwashing. Brain-rinsing is a necessary stage in your reading cycle, when you are too overwhelmed by non-fiction, too tired of general adult fiction, and too unimpressed by genre fiction. Oh, and you have read all the graphic novels you want to read for the rest of the month. So really, all you have left are picture books and grocery lists.
Well, not really. It’s been a while since I’ve read YA. I used to read quite a bit of it, but then I got overwhelmed with adult books at work. I don’t think YA is stupid or too simple, though someone seems to disagree. My response to that article is this: nobody should be shamed or admonished for READING. Shush, Slate, these people ARE reading. Most of the population in this country hasn’t cracked open a book since school. Besides, just because they are reading YA doesn’t mean they would all rush to read Proust if YA books were not available.
In any case, here’s my YA reading for the past few days:
1) Man Made Boy by Jon Skovron. Frankenstein and the Bride had a son. Well, made a son, rather. Boy has not left his house under Times Square in seventeen years, until he finally gets a chance to go outside. Teenage rebellion is the main theme here, but so is fitting in and passing, if you want to use that term. It’s a fun, imaginative book, with lots of great characters and settings.
2) Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride. Man Made Boy was B-movie fun, but this was just excellent. I know it will come as a shock to many of you, but I have always been a rather morbid person. As a child, I used to spend hours in the Ancient Egypt part of art museums just to stare at mummies. I like dead things in my books. And I don’t actually mean zombies, but rather the uneasy presence of the dead, the hauntings, the idea that you could have an affinity with dead souls.
3) Sabriel by Garth Nix. Hey look, it’s once again about dead things. Sabriel, however, is an odd necromancer. She is an Abhorsen, a person whose task is to lay dead things to rest rather than raise them from the ground. I read the Abhorsen books a few years ago and found them incredibly well-done and unique. I’m rereading the first one for the bookgroup, and it’s definitely still a great read. The plot is pretty simple (in fact, as someone in my book group pointed out, too simple), but the setting gives me a Morrowind-kind of vibe for some reason. Plus, I forgot about the cat. The cat is great.