Oh don’t mind that, it’s just my jaw on the floor…

So, you might have noticed, I don’t actually talk about books often on here.

I talk about my TBR pile, but almost NEVER review. There’s a reason. I am the Russian judge of the book world. I am so super picky, and anything from bad writing to a familiar plot will turn me off a book. A lacking ending is the worst offense, but poor craft is pretty darn close. The number of books I love is small (but man when I love a book I will shout it from the rooftops).

So let’s talk about three books I love, one’s been out for almost 15 years, one just came out this year, and one isn’t out yet.

NEVERWHERE. Neil Gaiman.

So I’m a little behind. This came out in 1996 and I just finished listening to it driving to and from classes. Oh. My. So, my love of Gaiman is nothing new, and just a few months back I talked about how THE GRAVEYARD BOOK was one of my all-time favorites. This book had me similarly in awe. Perhaps it’s because I’ve been in edits and am thus hyper-attentive to the writing/craft and the world-building/rules, but I found this book to be SPECTACULAR, from the amazingly horrific bad guys down to little details. One of my favorite elements was a major plot element, established in only TWO sentences. It was so cleanly done, I might have paused the CD to marvel. Love love love abounds from my corner for this master.

BEFORE I FALL. Lauren Oliver.
I was so, so happy to see this book have SUCH a strong debut, since I had read an ARC and been amazed by the depth and complexity of the characters. The only way I can describe them is REAL. The most real I have ever found fictional people to be. Beautiful craft and compelling narrative make this one of those books I hock on street corners and in YA aisles of bookstores.

INFINITE DAYS. Rebecca Maizel.
Wow. Okay, so this book comes out this summer. It’s a vampire book, and yet it is SO incredibly refreshing. Once again, beautiful language, engrossing plot, and a wonderful attention to detail made this book a DELIGHT. I am actually considering re-reading (and I almost NEVER re-read, no time, but that’s how much I loved it). Put this one on your lists, people. LOVED.

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11 thoughts on “Oh don’t mind that, it’s just my jaw on the floor…

  1. olmue says:

    I checked out Before I Fall just before I moved, and was sad that I never got a chance to read it. I’ll have to track it down at my next library. But yeah–the weak ending thing saps the love I might have otherwise had. I once read a book (adult) with lovely writing and a captivating setting. The pacing was nice, too, with all the tensions simmering to a point. Then I reached the chapter just before the climax, turned the page, and–Six Months Later. I am so not kidding. The author had skipped the climax and gone to the denouement! Talk about throwing a book across the room! Then I headed back to kidlit, where silly things like that don’t happen near as often.

  2. kaz_mahoney says:

    Oooh… I wanna read INFINITE DAYS!!!
    *covets*

  3. lisa_laura says:

    I LOVED BEFORE I FALL! Loved. My new obsession is THE SKY IS EVERYWHERE. So many good books to read, so little time….

  4. lynseynewton says:

    I’m ashamed to say that I haven’t had the pleasure of discovering Neil Gaiman’s writing…YET…however I’ve now got The Graveyard Book so I’ll be reading that soon.
    Before I Fall was EXCELLENT and I totally agree with your comments about it. Am deliriously excited for Delirium coming out (see what I did there?) and Lauren is lovely and so hard working.
    Thanks for the tip on Infinite Days – will definitely be looking out for that one. I do like vampire stories although most of the time I feel “vampired out”. For you to say that it is refreshing, makes me want to take a look πŸ™‚

  5. I’m so excited to read Infinite Days when it comes out. There’s a bunch of books getting released in fall that just NEED TO BE OUT NOW. Ahem. [/endpsycho]
    I have Neverwhere on my book shelf, but haven’t read it yet. *hides* Your post made me want to pick it up and recitify that. I haven’t been introduced properly to Neil Gaiman either, but I think I definitely need to check some of his books out. πŸ˜€

  6. veschwab says:

    Endings are so hard, and too few books do them well. NEVERWHERE has such a fabulous, SATISFYING ending. I want to hug it.

  7. veschwab says:

    It’s SO GOOD. No joke.

  8. veschwab says:

    Loved BIF enough to literally push it on EVERY customer that shops alongside me in the YA section EVERY time I’m there.

  9. veschwab says:

    GASP.
    You must.
    I actually recommend listening to his books on CD. He narrates, and he. is. AMAZING. It’s truly an experience. Graveyard Book changed my life, and Neverwhere was incredible.
    Before I Fall mesmerized me with the writing and depth of character.
    Infinite Days was FAB and the author is a true JOY. I am very vamped out, but I loved her take, VERY refreshing, hope you give it a chance πŸ™‚

  10. veschwab says:

    Infinite Days was SO GOOD. And totally agree. The fall is SO promising!
    Read Neverwhere! Know that it takes about 50 pages, but seriously, give it a try, because it’s one of the best endings I’ve read in awhile.

  11. jessica_shea says:

    I loved BEFORE I FALL too. I’m really looking forward to INFINITE DAYS. I just saw Vania’s trailer, and those always make me want to read the books!

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