Monday, March 24, 2014

Divergent VS. Hunger Games

I have read all of the Hunger Games (Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay) by Suzanne Collins and really enjoyed them.  I  just finished Divergent by Veronica Roth and can say I liked that too.
But what I want to know- what is with all the guns and killing?  I understand teen novels tend to have more angst than say, adult fiction. Both had a bit of that in them.  But the whole teen as killer thing seems to be a new trend in Young Adult Fiction.

I've read other series (My Fair Assassin by Robin LeFever, Graceling by Kristin Cashore, The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare)-all with strong female leads, who also happen to be deadly.

Earlier series like The Enchanted Forest Series by Patricia Wrede or Song of the Lioness by Tamora Pierce had kick-butt heroines but violence was minimized. Both were written in the 1980's so that may be the difference.

I just wonder if I am just showing my age or has the world become so desensitized to violence that it is prevalent in today's teen stories as well as adult. Has literature written for young teen males always had that edge to it (sorry- I was raised in the 60's and 70's but in a conservative small town.)  What am I missing? 
I know teen girls want to be/deserve to be portrayed as strong, independent people. I get that and like that. I like that girls can solve problems. But when a girl has to shoot a classmate in the head to save herself and "the world as she knows it"-is it the right thing to do? 

I would love to hear what others think of this trend.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The Chase by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg

Internationally renowned thief and con artist Nicolas Fox is famous for running elaborate and daring scams. His greatest con of all: convincing the FBI to team him up with the only person who has ever caught him, and the only woman to ever capture his attention, Special Agent Kate O’Hare. Together they’ll go undercover to swindle and catch the world’s most wanted—and untouchable—criminals.
Their newest target is Carter Grove, a former White House chief of staff and the ruthless leader of a private security agency. Grove has stolen a rare Chinese artifact from the Smithsonian, a crime that will torpedo U.S. relations with China if it ever becomes public. Nick and Kate must work under the radar—and against the clock—to devise a plan to steal the piece back. Confronting Grove’s elite assassins, Nick and Kate rely on the skills of their ragtag crew, including a flamboyant actor, a Geek Squad techie, and a band of AARP-card-carrying mercenaries led by none other than Kate’s dad. 
A daring heist and a deadly chase lead Nick and Kate from Washington, D.C., to Shanghai, from the highlands of Scotland to the underbelly of Montreal. But it’ll take more than death threats, trained henchmen, sleepless nights, and the fate of a dynasty’s priceless heirloom to outsmart Fox and O’Hare.

I really enjoy this caper novel. It was fun, fast moving and had some great dialogue.  I've read Janet Evanovich for years and enjoy her By the Numbers series. This was my first time reading Lee Goldberg's work-I plan on looking for more.  
I liked the character development. I liked that I could follow the plot without having read the first in the series, The Heist,  
One of the things I liked about the book was that it was plot driven. It had some violence (you were dealing with a corrupt former politician-it's gonna happen) but no real bad language or sex. I can recommend this to everyone- A win-win in my job as a librarian.

I am sure you will  enjoy the book too.