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March 25, 2010

Guest Post: Alisa M. Libby

Please welcome Alisa M. Libby the author of The King's Rose which I reviewed here. She is here to talk about some of her favorite YA books!

I love young adult fiction. I'm drawn to read it and to write it. As young adults we're trying to figure out the type of people we want to be; this element of change adds to the charged atmosphere of any good young adult novel. In honor of YA fiction, here are a few of my favorites.
Dangerous Angels by Francesca Lia Block
These books opened my eyes to the vast possibilities of YA fiction. They're urban fantasies, and also fairy tales, and also prose poems. Some of the subject matter is dark and edgy, but it's still all sprinkled with pixie dust, as is Block's style. I am a huge fan of her work; I also loved her dark novel The Hanged Man.
Fade by Robert Cormier
I love Robert Cormier's writing in general (other favorites include Tenderness and In the Middle of the Night) but here he blew me away with his own take on magical realism. Everything in this world is so undoubtedly real that when the main character learns that he has the power to become invisible, why would I doubt it for a moment? I'm convinced that Cormier himself had "the fade."
The Broken Citadel by Joyce Ballou Gregorian
This might be borderline middle-grade/young adult, but it's probably my favorite adventure story. I loved the character of Sibby, a girl more at home in the world of a magical quest than in her own hometown (which, it so happens, was very near where I grew up). If you love fantasy than I highly recommend this book, the first of a trilogy.
For more fantasy choices, I highly recommend the classic The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle, along with Undine by Penni Russon (first of a trilogy), The Black Tattoo by Sam Enthoven. For contemporary realistic fiction I recommend Nothing Like You by Lauren Strasnick, Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson and Silent to the Bone by E.L. Konigsburg.
There are dozens of other books that I've loved, that have impacted my own writing and helped me learn new techniques. There is nothing that teaches me more about writing than reading great books.

Alisa M. Libby
author, The King's Rose and The Blood Confession

Thanks Alisa! And make sure to check out my review for The King's Rose!


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