Book Talk Tuesday: A Need So Beautiful

I just finished reading a YA book, A Need So Beautiful by Portland author, Suzanne Young.  Are you looking for a paranormal book to take you away for a while?  This book is it.

We all want to make our mark in the world.  Who wants to be forgotten?

When Charlotte feels “the Need”, she must go.  She’s a Forgotten like an earth angel, helping strangers in need.  However, each time Charlotte assists someone, a piece of Charlotte transforms.  Eventually all of  the people who knew Charlotte will forget her.

Charlotte struggles to accept her fate.  Who wants to be forgotten?  She wants to help her boyfriend and best friend but the Need doesn’t take her there.  She can choose to fight and live in the dark forever.  But will she?

Young weaves a tight tale of love, the desire to be remembered, and the fight between good and evil.  It’s refreshing to have a paranormal that doesn’t involve vampires and werewolves.  As somebody read and re-read Wuthering Heights in high school (when the YA genre didn’t exist), I can see me in high school today reading and rereading A Need So Beautiful.  And the ending will make you wish the sequel was coming out next week. (You’ll have to wait until next summer).

Read about more great books at The Lemme Library, host of Book Talk  Tuesday.

 Happy Reading.


Book Talk Tuesday: Our Only May Amelia

Just finished listening to Our Only May Amelia by Jennifer Holm.  It was her debut novel in 2001 and was selected as a Newbery Honor book. 

May Amelia is the youngest child and only girl of Finnish immigrants living in southwest Washington in 1899.  The setting encompasses the Nasel River and Astoria, Oregon.  May Amelia has seven older brothers whom she’s always chasing after.  She’s an adventure seeker and wants nothing to do in becoming a “Proper Young Lady.” 

Holm weaves in plenty of adventures for May Amelia.  From being in the river when the logs are released upstream to seeking out the healing services of a Chinook wife to investigating the wild town of Astoria, readers will be engaged and wondering what May Amelia will do next.

There’s  danger, heartbreak, and laughter throughout the book.

Again, Holm has drawn on the stories of her relatives who lived in the area at the turn of the century. 

I suggested it to third and fourth grade teachers as a great read aloud.

Book Talk Tuesday is hosted by the Lemme Library.

Happy Reading.


Book Talk Tuesday: Turtle in Paradise

I just finished listening to Turtle in Paradise  by Jennifer Holm.  Wished the book had been out two years ago when I went to visit my aunt and uncle living in Key West.  I missed out on a couple of good places to visit (and I thought I had visited them all).

Readers will fall in love with Turtle, an eleven year old who hates Shirley Temple. It’s 1935, middle of the Great Depression  and jobs are few and far between.   Turtle’s mom gets a housekeeping job with a woman who doesn’t like kids.  She’s sent from New Jersey to Key West to live with her relatives she’s never met.

Key West offers a whole new adventure for Turtle.  Boy cousins, a mysterious grandmother that she thought was dead according to her mother, and possibly of hidden treasure and Hollywood endings, Turtle comes into her own as an eleven year old.

I loved how Holm wove in historical bits and the flavor of Key West is there.  My next trip there will include a meal at Pepe’s, the oldest restaurant in Key West.  While I was listening to it, I really wanted to just board a plane and go!

As with many of Jennifer Holm’s books, Turtle in Paradise is based of family history and lore.  It received a 2011 Newbery Honor Medal.  I am looking forward to the day on of her books receives the Newbery Medal as her book are so worthy of it.

More book talks listed at The Lemme Library.

Happy Reading.