The Sidekicks by Will Kostakis (Penguin, 2016) is a powerful story. I finished it three months ago, but it still fills my thoughts. Well deserving of all the award love heaped its way. On the Notables for the CBCA Book of The Year Older Readers 2017, shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Literary Award and longlisted for the Inky Awards 2017.
Last year I fell in love with Frankie by Shivaun Plozza (Penguin, 2016). I have to reread her before book group at the end of the month. We’re discussing the Shortlist of the CBCA Book of The Year for Older Readers and I’m talking up Frankie. This is what I blogged last year:
“The past is with me; the present is here. The future is unmapped and changeable. Ours for the imagining: spreading out before us. Sunlight filled, deep blue, and the darkness.”
Cath Crowley’s Words in Deep Blue is a love letter to books and reading, the counterpoint to Graffiti Moon, a love letter to Art. Who wouldn’t love a story set in a second hand bookstore, starring a library of love letters secreted within the pages of beloved books.
“And that’s what you want to do, right? Make the world better. Well this is how I think we should do it. We’ll be like superheroes – sneaking around at night bringing Valentine to life. You were right about changing things. We should be doing everything we can.”
Green Valentine by Lili Wilkinson (Allen & Unwin, 2015) was longlisted for the Inky Award 2016. I borrowed it from the library and while reading, the shortlist was announced. It’s in the final five in contention for the Gold Inky. If you’re teenaged you can vote for your fav. (Lili Wilkinson founded the Inky Awards a decade ago.)
Spoilers ahead My review mentions some of the problematic aspects without spoilers.
“If nothing’s real, then what does it matter? You live here. Doesn’t that make it real enough?”
There’s so little YA featuring schizophrenia I was excited to read Made You Up by Francesca Zappia (Greenwillow Books, 2015). It’s garnered lots of love since its publication last year including shortlisting for the Inky Award 2016. I found misunderstanding of schizophrenia and psychiatric care and use of the sensational aspects we see so often in books and media. Zappia does a disservice to real people and their real problems and fears caused by their schizophrenia.
behind the wind
at the back of the sea
is my country”
I finally read the wonderfully lyrical Sister Heart by Sally Morgan (Fremantle Press, 2015). More verse novel love and deserving of all the award love. But the judges are confused: shortlisted for the CBCA Book of The Year Younger Readers 2016 and longlisted for the (YA) Inky Award 2016. I’m not confused, just heart drowned
in my saltwater tears”