Road Trip Wednesday: What In Real Life People Can You Talk To About YA?

Road Trip Wednesday is a ‘Blog Carnival,’ where YA Highway’s contributors post a weekly writing- or reading-related question that begs to be answered.

This Week’s Topic:

What IRL people can you talk to about YA?

I haven’t met many of my current YA book buddies, since most of of them live in my computer, and I have yet to determine whether or not they’re just cleverly disguised Twitterbots. However, I did have the pleasure of meeting and lunching with several YA writers IRL at my local SCBWI’s annual conference, and since then, have had quarterly business lunches with a few of them to catch up on…business. 😉 So, I do have an occasional outlet to talk books.

I’m also grateful that I have a bunch of book nerds in my family. So even though they may not be up to the specific goings-on of Young Adult literature, we can always talk about stories in general and what great stories we have read recently, and why it worked for us, and what didn’t work. And, these stories can range from every genre of literature to the latest movie or television series. I know that I’ve been over-the-moon enamored of the CBS series, Person of Interest, simply because of the intriguing storyline that show offers every. Single. Week.

(Oh, and my siblings and I have been SO EXCITED that Legend of Korra finally started airing after years of following news of its release!  Don’t know what I’m talking about? Then, we probably shouldn’t be friends. Just click over HERE, and soak in all the Avatar-goodness!)

Maybe you don’t get to talk YA with people IRL (heck, maybe it’s not even your genre, so why would you?), but do YOU have anyone you can gush to about stories? What story has captured your interest lately?

[I’m celebrating my blog’s Birthday Month! Hop over HERE to read the deets, and fill out the comment form to enter for a chance to win a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble e-gift card. Remember, any additional comments on any post this month will earn you extra entries!]

The Immortal Rules, by Julie Kagawa

I don’t think I can convey how much I love Julie Kagawa’s story-telling. I honestly don’t know what it is, but whenever I pick up one of her books, I get sucked right into the story.

She captivated me with her Iron Fey series, writing a world so lush and imaginative that the words disappeared, and for a time, I felt like I actually lived in a hybrid Alice In Wonderland meets Labyrinth landscape. Even when I didn’t agree with the decisions her characters made, I was lost in the fairy tales she wove.

The Immortal Rules is no exception.

Set in a post-apocalyptic world where a mutated virus creates Rabids that threaten the survival of humans and vampires alike, the vampires step out of their shadowed existence, creating cities where humans are herded and kept like cattle. Humans are registered to each Master Vampire, trading blood for food rations and resources within the city walls. Those who are unregistered with the vampires live in the Fringe, eking out an existence by any means necessary.

One such Fringer is Allison Sekemoto, who dreams of the long ago world without vampires that she’s only read about in books; where humans fought against their oppressors and not merely kowtowed to them. Allie hates vampires, and sees them for the monsters they are, but when she is attacked by Rabids outside the protective city walls, her overdeveloped sense of survival clutches onto the only lifeline offered to her: become a vampire, and live to fight another day.

And fight, she does! This is definitely not one of those “being a vampire will make your life easier” tales. If Allie isn’t slicing through hordes of Rabids, she is battling with her own inner monster that pushes her to feed. (Sidenote to writers: I would recommend this book just for the pacing alone!)

I know that many people may be put off with the vampire theme in this book, but please believe me when I say that vampires (or any other literary theme) don’t have to be “played out” or over done. In fact, this book is a great example of twisting up what’s already out there. Yes I know YA is the “hot” thing to do now. Yes, I know that vampires and dystopian and  post-apocalyptic themes have been done. But I promise you that The Immortal Rules is much, much more than the sum total of all those labels.

Moreover, it’s a great example of the power of storytelling. This book simply has It: that je ne sais quoi that elevates it from its various labels to create a compelling story.

* * *

As you know, I believe that good books are meant to be shared, and the authors who wrote the books (and took the time and care to craft these wonderful worlds) should be appreciated and supported. So, I’m giving away a copy of this book.

The Immortal Rules releases Tuesday, April 24, 2012. I plan on ordering the book Wednesday, April 25. For your chance* at a copy, please fill out the fancy contact form below. I’ll have it up between now till 12AM, April 25, 2012, at which point, random.org will pick the lucky winner for me, and I will announce the winner that day.

This giveaway is closed. Congratulations, Susan S!

*I will be ordering through The Book Depository, so if they deliver to your country, feel free to enter! 🙂

So, have you read a book lately that transcended its genre? Or, have you read a book that didn’t live up to its hype? I’d LOVE to know about it!

Also, if you’ve read The Immortal Rules, please share your thoughts, too!