Monday, December 19, 2011

All I Want for Christmas . . .

Hi All,

This was first posted on the Girls Heart Books site - do check it out for a great read!

Not long now until Christmas! And I for one can’t wait. Every year I ask my friends and family for one present, and one present only – book tokens!

Walking into my local bookshop – Dubray Books in Dun Laoghaire, Dublin – and knowing I can treat myself to those hardback books I’ve been gazing longingly at all year makes me so happy.

In case some of you also get book tokens for Christmas, or are looking for a brilliant read over the holidays, I’ve collected together a few of my favourite books of the year below.

I read a lot of books which are supposed to be for children or teenagers as they’re so darn good! I was a children’s bookseller for years and now I review children’s books for The Irish Independent, but to be honest I’d read them anyway. I like strong characters, clever, original plots and a sense of hope, all of which I get in books for young readers.

My Book of the Year: When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead

I love, love, loved this wonderful book. Part time-travel novel, part family and friendship drama, it’s original, compelling and I can’t recommend it highly enough. It’s set in New York too, and I love books set in NYC. It’s a cracking read.

I also loved Skulduggery Pleasant: Death Bringer by Derek Landy, a fantasy-horror adventure about a skeleton detective and his teenage side kick. It’s a hilarious, rip roaring read and I’d highly recommend the whole series. If you like something a little different, this book is for you.

Eva’s Holiday by Judi Curtin is just perfect for girls who like warm, funny reads. Eva loves fashion and hanging out with her friends, so when she has to spend the whole summer in a cottage down the country, she’s not happy. But soon she finds out that there’s more to life than clothes and having the right friends.

And I also adored Marshmallow Skye by Cathy Cassidy, the second in her warm, sweet Chocolate Box series. And finally another wonderful book is The Real Rebecca by Anna Carey is the story of Irish teen, Rebecca and her ultra embarrassing mother.

What will YOU be reading this Christmas?
Happy Christmas to all! May 2012 bring you many wonderful things . . . including brilliant books!
Yours in books,

Sarah XXX

Friday, December 2, 2011

Winners of the Young Editor Competition

Ta, da! I can finally announce the winners of the Young Editor Comp. It was so hard to judge - we got so many great entries. But the Irish winner is Yazmin from Shankhill, Dublin and the UK winner is Anna from West Sussex, England. They will be helping me edit the next Amy Green book, Dancing Daze. I can't wait to work with them. I hope it gives them an insight into how a book is written and edited!

As there were so many fab entries, we also have 3 runner up prizes - which will go to Abby, Tasha and Keelin. Well done to everyone!

And we'll be holding another Young Editor Competition next year as it was so popular - so keep reading!

Sarah XXX