May 30th, 2004, 09:36 AM
Surrender your mysteries
I haven't read any of the post-Potter YA books, but as I was growing up, there were a couple of older series that really did it for me and that I can credit for sparking my love for F and SF.
First off, the already mentioned RedWall books by Brian Jacques. These books were marvelous and I thought wildly imaginative, and though I haven't picked up any of them after, say, Martin the Warrior they will always hold a special place in my heart.
But even better are a series of books that haven't been mentioned: The Prydain Chronicles by Lloyd Alexander. These books are classic and anyone who is at all interested in YA fantasy should pick them up. A classic coming of age story but down with so much skill, emotion and humor. The volumes, in this order, are: The Book of Three, The Black Cauldron (which I hear has been made into a pretty bad direct-to-video animated movie), The Castle of Llyr, Taran Wanderer, and The High King. Pick these books up, you won't regret it!
May 30th, 2004, 11:43 PM
What about William Nicholson? Have you checked the "Wind of Fire" trilogy? I'm currently reading it and it's very cool.
June 1st, 2004, 05:36 PM
Cranky old broad
What Bond said, back on page one -- exactly.
I just read Dust by Arthur Slade. I found it on this year's Edgar Award list.
It's YA, and the genre is mixed -- there's a mystery, some science fiction, a bit of horror (though not explicit), and some fantasy.
Slade's 12-year-old hero Robert loves to read, and Slade uses Robert's imagination to good effect, and Robert's acceptance of impossible events makes it easy for the reader to accept them too.
Dust is set in Saskatchewan in the Dust Bowl 30's. A mysterious man arrives in town, promising to make it rain. The adults start acting weird and children are disappearing.
It's a good read -- it reminded me a bit of Bradbury's Something Wicked, although not so ambitious.
June 5th, 2004, 05:53 PM
Inter spem metumque iacto
Thanks for the list, Rachel. I'm glad to say I know some of the books you mention, but perhaps ever gladder to admit others are totally new to me... Hmmm, I've some investigating to do!
Originally Posted by Rachel
In the meantime, I second Camrick's suggestion: The Prydain series is great stuff.
So is all of Alan Garner's work:
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen
The Moon of Gomrath
The Owl Service
Another series I enjoyed is Geraldine Harris's Seven Citadels tetralogy, which consists of:
Prince of the Godborn
The Children of the Wind
The Dead Kingdom
The Seventh Gate
... but I fear that it is out of print.
June 5th, 2004, 07:11 PM
Cranky old broad
Julian, thanks for your recommendations. I found the first of the Harris books at Amazon, used (and cheap). Looks like the books are out there, reading copies anyway.
I'm looking forward to reading this.
June 5th, 2004, 07:45 PM
Inter spem metumque iacto
Good to hear this - did a little check on Amazon.co.uk myself & came up with Prince of the Godborn for a mere GBR 180!!
Originally Posted by AuntiePam
Anyway, tell us what you you think when you've read it, okay?
July 8th, 2004, 05:29 AM
I've read all the post here and wanted to ask a further comment about YA's books.
I'm wondering just how gritty a YA's book can get? I've began reading reviews that wonder why some books are placed in the YA's bracket. Is it because that market seems to have grown, especially since the Harry Potter series.
Just wondering, because I tend not to look at YA's books thinking they aren't mature enough for me. Though after reading The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathan Stroud, which I thought was a really well written book, I began to wonder if some books in the YA's section would be to my taste
I know! Not an easy question to answer Has anyone read a book that was in YA's fantasy but made you wonder why, as it was more mature than you expected?
July 8th, 2004, 10:08 AM
I also read books intended for young adults and have just finished Abhorsen by Gareth Nix i have read all three in the series and have found them better than some books aimed at adults ie Steve Cockayne's Legends of the land i have also read all the Harry Potter books mind this is from someone who still reads C S Lewis's Narnia books every four or five months and dont forget the Hobbit was written as bedtime reading for Tolkiens children
August 25th, 2004, 09:14 PM
I've been thinking a lot about the YA classification lately, and what qualities books needed to possess to be branded YA.
Previously I would look for (not necessarily all) of the following properties:
Simpler level of language
Shorter novel length (not BFF)
One thing that does not affect my classification is violence (according to its level). For example, I've seen people not consider Across the Nightingale Floor as YA because of violence in it, however I felt it was YA.
Generally though, I rely on a vibe to differentiate it (that or marketing departments).
However, lately I'm starting to confuse some of the "lighter" fantasy on the market with YA. For example. in discussing Trudi Canavan's books I've seen some people consider them YA, whereas I felt they were more "light" fantasy. I think I tend to lean more towards classifying something as light if it's not as innovative/creative as other YA I've read.
So my next question:
Where do you draw the line between YA and light fantasy? Anyone out there consider Brooks to be YA? or Hearn to be light?
Another Australian YA author who hasn't been mentioned in this thread:
Isobelle Carmody. I've read her Obernewtyn books, which are enjoyable, but haven't read anything else by her. Any comments?
Last edited by Eventine; August 25th, 2004 at 09:16 PM.
August 27th, 2004, 06:16 AM
Im not sure if they are exactly YA probably are but has anyone read the Diane Duane books? I read a couple when I was younger and I thought they were good. I think she has about six out at this stage
August 31st, 2004, 01:46 AM
BTW, I finished His Dark Materials trilogy recently and I was stunned. It is a great book.
October 5th, 2004, 05:54 PM
I've recently read His Dark Materials as well and while I liked it I had this nagging sensation every now and again that I had read something similar before. Couldn't place it though. Might have been my imagination
October 5th, 2004, 07:28 PM
I was wondering if Stroud was going to get a mention in this thread and had determined to come in singing his praises, heh. I've read both The Amulet of Samarkand and it's sequel The Golem's Eye and enjoyed both. Stroud has created an extremely vibrant character in Bartimaeus. I eagerly await the concluding novel to this series.
Originally Posted by rune
October 5th, 2004, 07:39 PM
Yeah Stroud is excellant. I havent been keeping up with new releases and I didnt notice the Golem's Eye was out. Will have to pick it up tomorrow
October 6th, 2004, 09:43 AM
Big Brian Jacques fan here, love his Redwall series, and I've found it's best to read in Chonlogical(IE the generations of characters rather than the publishing order). What got me about these books is how grown up they are in tone, particularly the battles, in which he's not afraid to kill good as well as evil creatures.
I Like the Potter series, read His Dark Materials, and while I enjoyed the concept, the story seemed to weaken a bit as it went on after the first book, and am wanting to read more Monica Hughes after reading "Playing the game"-awesome story.
Tags for this Thread