Everyone always wants to know what the “next big thing” is in books, including me. We are way over the paranormal books, with vampires and werewolves and now dystopian books are old hat, despite The Hunger Games and Divergent movies still to come. So what is next?
I think Realistic Fiction is gaining ground, partly thanks to John Green’s books and movies. (Not that it ever truly went away.) I recently read two great teen realistic fiction books. And yes, the covers are quite similar but that is just a coincidence!
The first book, which was the Printz Award winner, is by Jandy Nelson, “I’ll Give You The Sun.” This book is told through two voices, twins Jude and Noah. The interesting part is that Noah’s portion is told from when they were 13 years old and Jude’s voice is from when they are 16. This gives the reader the perspective of what is to come but not how it came about. I really enjoyed the characters of both twins and how the story came together in the end.
The other book is “Zac and Mia” by A.J. Betts. At first this book might seem to be an “A Fault In Our Stars” ripoff, but the story evolves beyond that. Zac and Mia have their own unique story to tell. Zac “meets” Mia because they are sharing a hospital wall while he is in isolation for his leukemia treatment. Mia is a popular girl, but is hiding her sickness from all her friends and is unable to come to terms with her illness. The friendship develops after the hospital but each are not always honest and upfront with each other. But in the end, they each need something for the other person and the ending leaves the fate of the characters up to the reader.