Phew! August has certainly flown by hasn't it? With just a couple days left in the month I'm scrambling to get a couple of books finished and reviewed. I don't know about you guys but as much as I enjoy the lovely weather and relaxation of summer I am quite ready for autumn to arrive.
School has already started back up for the munchkins here and with it I've basked in that special buzz of excitement that comes from fresh notebooks and sharp pencils. I'm sure it's rather freakish but aside from the first day jitters and the occasional woken on the wrong-side-of-the-bed day I always loved school. Obviously reading and writing were the two areas where I showed the most talent... or at least passion. I remember some of my earliest reads including The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Where the Wild Things Are. It's still great to snag these from my son's shelf and visit the characters.
I was reading a comment in Amazon.com's Vine program forum earlier today where other reviewers were either trying to encourage others to read Juvenile Fiction (aka YA) or were complaining about the abundance of it offered to us through the program. I didn't comment but I was compelled to tell the naysayers that their complaints were really baseless. We have some really brilliant authors out there right now who are publishing fiction geared toward teens, tweens and children and are successful because adults are picking these up more and more.
I'm sure these authors would agree with me when I say it's a very healthy thing for an adult to read fiction intended for younger audiences. I say this for two reasons...
#1. I'm all for parents being aware of what their children are reading and being open to discuss themes/topics from them that they may not be ready for or need guidance in. Everyone has different views, morals and ideas about how to raise their kids and what they want them to know at what age. I had to discuss sex with my nine-year-old this past spring because I felt he was ready to know where babies come from (since we have one on the way). For some this may have been much more vague or scientific but my husband and I chose to also discuss the importance of waiting until you're ready (emotionally AND physically) and the scarier side of it too (disease, rape, etc). I feel the same way about certain subjects in books and try to read much of what he does so we can talk about it.
#2. Connecting with younger characters and issues can be very therapeutic, refreshing and just plain fun! I was a very imaginative tween and often find that I enjoy the focus being put on troubles and concerns that teens and children go through versus the woes of adults. Sometimes it is far more fun to read about getting the part in a play rather than a character's latest romantic misunderstanding.
Whatever a person's reason for choosing some young adult fiction I'm very glad it is available to me. I also got some good news about the YA fic I often get through the Vine program. I finally looked over the FAQ and realized I had misunderstood something. While I cannot repost my reviews there to another (read: competitive) retailer's site, I can repost them here on my blog. Yay! So expect me to share some of those at a later date. I have three of them to read in the next month or so as it is.
And speaking of future reading! I'm quite excited about September being my Witch month. :D This was only helped along by my October issue of RT Book Reviews magazine arriving in the mail this afternoon.
There's a three page article focusing on witchy fiction that even includes special spells and charms from authors Yasmine Galenorn, Elissa Wilds, Marilyn Campbell, and Maggie Shayne. I haven't had time to read the article yet but if you're interested in this theme you should definitely check your local B&N (the only place in my town that carries it) and possibly Borders. I love this magazine as a reviewer anyway and the October issue is busting with good stuff.
Don't forget that this coming Monday I will be hosting author Terry Spear as a guest blogger! I asked her to give me some insight into why she chose to write the lupus garou her stories focus on versus a more man-beasty sort of werewolf. Can't wait to share with you what she had to say. Plus, I will be reviewing her newest release, To Tempt the Wolf ANNNNNND I'll be giving away one copy to a lucky reader so don't forget to visit!
I've got to get my schedule and some life stuff in order but I'm hoping to have another goodie to giveaway sometime next month. Keep checking back!
I think that's about it for now folks. I really need to get back to my reading if I want to finish these two books before September begins. ;) -- Rhi