Monday, January 5, 2009

Cybils, Segueing to Australia, la la la

Graceling is a finalist for the Cybils, the children's and YA bloggers' literary awards, in the Fantasy/SF category ^_^. Check out all the categories and all the finalists here. I haven't read most of the other finalists (yet!!), but those I have read happen to be among my favorite reads of the year, and I recommend them highly -- see below. Links are to their Amazon descriptions. Oh, and I don't include The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins below, because I've only just started reading it, but I will say that at 25 pages in, I have already laughed, cried, AND screamed out in surprise. So, um, it's safe to say that I have high expectations of enjoying that one :o)

The Cabinet of Wonders by Marie Rutkoski




The Magic Thief by Sarah Prineas




A Curse Dark as Gold by Elizabeth C. Bunce








Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta




Jellicoe Road reminds me of the disproportionate amount of Australian literature I've been reading lately, all of which is FABULOUS, so I'm going to go on and give you a few more recommendations of great books (none from 2008):
  • Saving Francesca by Melina Marchetta. A favorite of mine and also of Cordelia's. Marchetta also has a fantasy out called Finnikin of the Rock which I haven't read yet but which is guaranteed to be wonderful, just like everything else she writes. Really, you can't go wrong (Looking for Alibrandi is also great!) :o)
  • The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. Just. Read it.
  • Black Juice by Margo Lanagan. Magical realism; short stories (and I never read short stories, but these ones hooked me. Margo Lanagan has an EXCELLENT BRAIN).
  • Sleeping Dogs by Sonya Hartnett. Gorgeousness and gorgeosity made flesh.
I spent my junior year abroad in Sydney; it was one of the best decisions of my life. What a city; what a beautiful nation. Where else can you see a kangaroo from a hot air balloon, or walk into a forest that smells of eucalyptus (um, because it is eucalyptus), or witness an emu having an identity crisis? (It seemed to think it was a cow. It was grazing with the cows, and allowing itself to be herded with the cows.) La la la. I hope I'll get back to Australia someday :o)

17 comments:

beth said...

I love that all the books from 2008 you listed are either books that I have already read, or ones that are on my TBR pile. My goal for 2009 is to read 50 books (they're on my blog--and they include Graceling, which I finished Saturday), and most of those are on that list. I'm in the middle of Curse Dark as Gold right now, and The Hunger Games is below it on the stack.

LOVED the Book Thief--one of the best books ever written EVAR. The rest on your list there, though, I've not read...so I'm off to explore and add to my TBR pile!

Shelli said...

congrads you deserve it!
shelli
http://faeriality.blogspot.com/

Lula! said...

You will win the Cybil award. You will. I feel it in my bones.

How were you able to put The Hunger Games down to write this post? I've only read 3 books this year that I can say were unputdownable: HG was one of 'em. The other was about vampires. And then, well...you know...the other was nominated for a Cybil and was written by you.

Thanks for the book recommendations. I'm learning rather quickly that YA literature is where it's at. Said the 34 year old, ending with a preposition.

Lula! said...

OK, OK...
the CybilS...not Cybil...like the actress. Gotcha.

Sonya Lou Who said...

Congrats!!! Well deserved nomination to say the very least.

I enjoyed THG as well, Katniss and our Katsa remind me a bit of eachother.... let me know if you think so too!

Yay the sun is shining today, thank you!

angie said...

I feel another win for you in my bones too. Thanks for the great list of books to attack.....

Yen said...

hurrah! congratulations for the nomination and thanks for the list of recommendations. why do those aussies write such great books??

BeyondTheIcyWalls said...

I read 'The Hunger Games' and I'd have to say it was one of my favorites of the year.

*crosses fingers* Lets hope you win that award!

tinkandalissa said...

Is there any doubt?...Of course you will win! You are fabulous! I've been throwing that word all over the place today, by the way. What happened to Winter? It is 61 freakin degrees in Asheville today! Not that I am complaining. I just want to get it over with already so everything will be GREEN again!! Bah!
I am on Ch 6 of HG. Just started last night and did not want to stop but, alas, I had to work today. Which is what I really should be doing now, but I'm reading your blog instead. I am adding some of your recommended books to my TBR list. I literally have like 20+ books in piles on my bookshelf and strowed about my bedroom in my TBR stack. My husband is begging me to make them disappear. Which leads me to one quick question: Do you get rid of your books once you read them, or do you horde them like a little squirrel hordes nuts for the winter? I'm a bit of a packrat when it comes to books. You couldnt pry them from my cold dead hands...Congrats on the nom!!

kristin cashore said...

Aw, thanks, guys! Honestly, I'm not too concerned about whether or not I win -- I'm just happy to be a finalist. (Ha! That sounds like that fake thing actors say after they lose at the Oscars: "It's an honor to be nominated." Except, I really mean it... and maybe they do, too?)

Have added a couple of questions from these comments to my list!

cindy said...

keep the good news coming! congratulations, kristin! wow!

Caitlin said...

Congrats!!!!! I absolutely loved the book.
*warning spoiler*
I really wanna know why you made Po go blind. I cried for hours!! I want him to be able to see Katsa again. It was really sad when I read it. Sorry if sound a little too obsessive. I tend to get that way over really really good books

kristin cashore said...

*spoiler warning!!!*

Hi Caitlin, thanks for writing! Sometimes plots just come to you in a certain way, and you can't explain why they are that way. I can't really answer your question, because the answer is that this was the story that came to me, and I couldn't have changed that aspect of it, because it just felt right that way. It worked well with the growth of his Grace, and it gave the story the sort of bittersweet ending that I like in my own reading. I do agree that it's sad and unfair. Sorry I made you cry!! :(

Dianna said...

I actually just finished Graceling last night. My friend practically screamed at me that it was amazing and I have to read it. Let me say... its definitely up there with my favs. Oh and I like the booklist. I loved The Hunger Games. Everyone looks at me funny when I suggest they read it though... XD It was really amazing and one of the best books I've had the pleasure of reading. I can't wait until Fire comes out. And Bitterblue! (I practically screamed when I saw there'll be more to read!)

Your very new fan,
Dianna =]

April said...

I have to say I think I'm the only person I know who didn't really enjoy The Hunger Games. Best YA I've read this year is Graceling, for sure. In YA fiction I also enjoyed Book of a Thousand Days (actually published 2007, but I just now got to it) and, in a non-fantasy setting, The Patron Saint of Butterflies. One of my favorites in fantasy was The Name of the Wind (also 2007), which is not actually YA but I think would hold a lot of appeal for older YAs (as well as folks like me who are about 15 years older than the target YA audience, but still enjoy YA fiction a lot!)

Caitlin said...

Yeah I agree with that. It does help him understand. I cry all the time. You don't have to apologize. When I cry, it's because I get inside the book and i can feel the pain or sadness or happiness the characters feel. I read in school all the time and everyone looks at me funny cuz I'm a loud reader. I am so excited for your other books. Thanks for answering my question. I really appreciate it

Helen said...

Vague SPOILER ahead! Ok i just finished reading Graceling which i loved! I've grown to love Katsa and Po and all the chracters an im having a hard time lettingthem go. I really think it deserves a sequal an i know you are working on Bitterblue but how much will Katsa and Po be in it!!!, im so worried~ anyway i rember thinking at the end that Raffin would produce some miraculus cure to Po's problem, it was so sad!!!!!!!!! I don't know why but i feel like i should thank you for your book cuz i had so much fun reading it and it reminded me of the magic of reading (which i had forgotten cuz i hadn't read a book all year!)