Thursday 5 January 2012

2012 - What to look out for in contemporary OzYA?

Australian YA.

You know it, I know it.

I was kindly invited to blog for the Book Smugglers this week and felt terrible for only mentioning a tiny list of YA titles as most anticipated.  

They were:
  • The Howling Boy - Cath Crowley (contemp)
  • The Wrong Boy - Suzy Zail (historical, WW2)
  • Broken - Elizabeth Pulford (contemp, graphic novel)
  • The Montmaray Journals: FitzOsbornes at War by Michelle Cooper (historical)
You can read more about them over at the Book Smugglers.  I have chosen to augment that list with more contemporary titles as that is what I am typically asked to recommend on this blog.  In some cases I don't have a lot of offical information to tell you so you'll have to keep glued to their publishers' websites.

What you should be seeking out in 2012 from the land Down Under, home of supremely talented, very attractive and outrageously funny writing folk.

Vikki Wakefield's sophomoric novel on the heels of All I Ever Wanted.  No title has been announced, or release date, but I want to read it.  She's a new contemporary voice in Australian youth lit and you should be jumping on the Vikki-train.

Queen of the Night by Leanne Hall - heck yes.  Text Publishing lists its release as February 27th this year. If you haven't read This is Shyness - get on it.

The dark is dangerous. So is the past. So are your dreams. For six months Nia—Wildgirl—has tried to forget Wolfboy, the mysterious boy she spent one night with in Shyness—the boy who said he’d call but didn’t.
Then Wolfboy calls. The things he tells her pull her back to the suburb of Shyness, where the sun doesn’t rise and dreams and reality are difficult to separate. There, Doctor Gregory has seemingly disappeared, the Darkness is changing and Wolfboy’s friend is in trouble. And Nia decides to become Wildgirl once more.

Fiona Wood made quite an impression in 2010 with her debut novel, Six Impossible Things.  This year will  see the release of its follow up, Pulchritude (or perhaps Kisschasey)

The Reluctant Hallelujah by Gabrielle Williams is a story I don't want to talk about that much.  It might spoil things.  If you've read Beatle Meets Destiny then you know Williams has a delightfully off kilter sense of humour with a strong beating heart.  What I can tell you about this book?  It involves a the worst possible time for a teen about to sit her final exams. Also, there is a lovely reference to Wizard of Oz throughout.  Intrigued?
When Dodie's parents go missing just as final year exams are about to start, she convinces herself they're fine. But when the least likely boy in class holds the key -- quite literally -- to the huge secret her parents have been hiding all these years, it's up to Dodie, her sister, the guy from school, and two guys she's never met before, to take on the challenge of a lifetime. So now Dodie's driving -- unlicensed -- to Sydney, and being chased by bad guys, the police, and one very handsome good guy.

Some of you may know that I started a new job at the beginning of 2011.  I work at the State Library of Victoria as the Program Coordinator for the Centre for Youth Literature.  Our role is to promote teen reading and youth literature with a specific bent towards Australian authored works of wonder :)

My team each posted their favourites of 2011 and their most anticipated for 2012.  It is a great snapshot of Australian YA content you may not be aware of from a multitude of reading tastes.  We also post reviews and thematic book lists weekly at our blog - Read Alert.  Throughout January we are also posting links to teachers' notes and units of work for possible class texts in the lead up to the Australian school year.

Plugging over :)

Thanks for making me feel like I haven't completely slipped out of the blogosphere.  I am hoping to post more movie reviews throughout 2012 as I dearly miss blogging and the community.

Have a happy new year with your noses pressed into lovely smelling pages of wonder.


Anonymous said...

I haven't read heaps of YA fiction, so not all of these make me excited, but I love-love-LOVED "Six Impossible Things", so I'm super looking forward to Fiona Wood's next book. Thanks for the heads-up!

Nomes said...

oh ~ I picked vicki wakefields book as my fave read for last year (which was pretty hard, but i really did love it so)

love this post ~ i am not very up to date with the up and coming Aussie YA scene :/