Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Sarah Quigley

Sarah Quigley is the author of TMI, her first YA novel.

A couple of weeks ago I asked her what she was reading. Her reply:
I rarely read books I don’t like because I’m always getting great recommendations from my writer friends. I regularly share my thoughts about kick-ass books on my blog. Here are some of my favorites from the past few months:

How to Say Good-Bye in Robot by Natalie Standiford

While most seniors would enter a new school hoping to party with the popular kids, Beatrice would rather stay up late listening to a quirky call-in radio show and patrol bookstores with Jonah. Nicknamed Robot Girl and Ghost Boy, the two strike up an unusual friendship that hovers near romance but can’t seem to land.

I loved the way Standiford made Beatrice cynical but not overly bitter, allowing herself to finally care about someone while pushing away the in crowd. Beatrice and Jonah choose to be outsiders, and it’s a refreshing change from the usual YA storyline in which the protagonists try to fit in at all costs.

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

I read If I Stay almost a year ago and continue to think about it often. Seventeen-year-old Mia is in a car accident that puts her in a coma, kills her parents, and leaves her brother in critical condition. The story alternates between the present, as Mia’s loved ones rally around her at the hospital, and the past, which paints a portrait of a wholly likable, closely-knit family. Mia knows she must choose between the present and the past, life and death. Will she join her family?

Forman presents this tragedy with masterful grace. It would have been easy for this book to become heavy-handed and utterly depressing. As I read, my sadness for Mia was tinged with hope. I felt such a connection to this family, it was as if I were sitting at their kitchen table. Forman pulled me into a beautiful, loving world.

The Dead-Tossed Waves by Carrie Ryan

This is the companion to Ryan’s smash debut, The Forest of Hands and Teeth. It’s about the zombie apocalypse. Let me clarify up front that I am not the sort of person who typically enjoys books about zombies, vampires, and other manner of paranormal freakitude. Yet I gobbled up these two books faster than a Breaker the Dark City (you’ll have to read the book to get the references).

Why? Let me count the ways:

1. Gorgeous, lyrical prose
2. Sprays of blood
3. Ever-escalating tension and suspense
4. Zombie love triangle
5. Nautical theme

So if you enjoy shallow breathing and white knuckles, this is the book for you.
Read an excerpt from TMI, and learn more about the book and author at Sarah Quigley's website.

My Book, The Movie: TMI.

--Marshal Zeringue