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Practically Paradise
Inside Practically Paradise

Sequel Sunday

Have I ever mentioned how much I enjoy exhibit halls at ALA midwinter and Annual? I had two full hours on Friday night and managed to come away with over 80 books. Many were advanced reading copies, some I Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Sidepurchased, others were gratefully accepted donations. 

I admit I pleaded heavily with Jekel Loves HydeLerner for their only copy of the new biography of Michael Jackson. I returned eight times to remind them how much I wanted this title and finally on Monday at two minutes to ten, they caved to my pressure.

What was the first question boys asked me when I walked into school less than one hour after landing at the Nashville airport? Did you find any Michael Jackson books? 

I was able to waive it at them, get it processed immediately and in their teacher’s hand to read-aloud before the week was out. PHEW! These are the students who said they were going to lock me out if I didn’t return with a Michael Jackson biography. They are a tough crowd! Thanks to Lerner for coming through.

Today I declare is Sequel Sunday as I catch up on the second novels of some highly popular middle grade and young adult literature that was published last year. Why? I had students telling me they needed help finding books to read. When I’d ask them what was the last good book they remember reading, they told me: 

Hearts at Stake
Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark SideJasper Dash and the Flame-Pits of Delaware
The Brain Finds a Leg
Carbon Diaries 2015 
Whales on Stilts

Students, you are in luck because I have uncorrected advanced reading copies of the sequels to all of those. In fact, I’m reading them and noting errors to tell the publishers about. Silly publishers to give OCD librarians uncorrected books to read. 

9780802798404Alyxandra Harvey scored with a romantic Vampire royal family in book one of the Drake Chronicles – Hearts at Stake. My tween/teen girls delighted in savoring the romance of Nicholas, Lucy, Solange, and Kieran. Even though Hearts at Stake was told from two girls’ perspectives, the students were totally enraptured with the intense action and r-o-m-a-n-c-e so they persevered.  

When I announced I had Blood Feud in my purse, they wanted details. Is it the same family? Who’s going to be the love interest? There are 7 children in that vampiric royal family. Will there be more fighting and history? Will Lucy remain human? What about Aunt Hyacinth? Did she survive the sun? What about those hounds? Sorry there is no cover illustration available yet, but I’m sure it will come closer to release date.

Do I dare tell them they must wait until August 2010 for the hardcover release of Blood Feud? Naw! I think I’ll let them loose with the ARC and wait for them to realize the third book will be released in January, 2011. I wonder how long it will take them to beg for that title. Many publishers don’t produce ARC’s after a series is a success. I’ll probably have a small group draw up their ideas for the author Alyxandra Harvey and send them on. Poor authors who think they can control their characters once they are set free in YA literature. The readers take over. 

Blood Feud incorporates the French Revolution into vampire history and is sure to drive my students to seek more historical titles of that age. If you missed Hearts at Stake earlier this year, be sure to snap it up and prepare for the demands for the sequel. Great female characters in this series who don’t dilly-dally all wishy-washy like some females in vampire books. (Don’t tell the girls, but I can’t wait for the next in this series either.)

The Carbon Diaries 2017 by Sacci Lloyd deals far more with the human survival aspect ofThe Carbon Diaries 2015 our environmentally at risk world than with the disaster aspects of The Carbon Diaries 2015. I’ll place this in mature hands who want to focus on relationships more than the eco-thriller aspect. Science titles predicting droughts and future problems with water will go on display with 2017. I’ll also be able to group some history and geography titles as the main characters become global activities in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. Check out the differences in covers available. for 2015. I couldn’t The Carbon Diaries 2017find a copy of the 2017 cover I’m reading, but you can see the UK editions are vastly different from the US Brain Finds a Leg, Thecovers.

The Brain Finds a Leg by Martin Chatterton was "wicked funny" according to the boys who read it. Along comes The Brain Full of Holes just in time for my comedic lovers. 

The girls dared me to find other titles with fast-moving dialogue and twisted humorous plots so I recommended Whales on Stilts and its sequel Jasper Dash and the Flame-Pits of Delaware in the Pals in Peril series by author M. T. Anderson.  Brain Full of Holes, The

Last but not least on my sequel reading today is Jekel Loves Hyde by Beth Fantaskey. Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side is one of THE top titles we read last year. Romantic. American. Frustrating. Dramatic. Climactic. and oh, so very satisfying in the end. 

Jekel Loves Hyde is not a sequel, but it is definitely an exciting edition to this author’s repertoire. I knew this was coming because two of my girls stormed in demanding to know why I had not told them The Wedding of Antanasia Jessica Packwood  and Lucius Valeriu Vladescu was available to read online. They could hardly accept my response that authors don’t feel any need to notify me every time they have a new title out. The students could hardly believe this and suggested that I put a reminder on my blog to authors to email me. <sigh> Give these students a page and they demand the whole chapter. 

Anyway, when we realized the wedding was online, the girls were so excited they mutineed at going to related arts classes. Only when I agreed to let them spend lunch time reading, were they willing to go to class. They are going to be so thrilled to read Jekel Loves Hyde. Once they discovered that authors put advance notice of their works in progress online, the library club students have determined to explore all author facebook fan pages, kidlitosphere pages, and author web pages to make sure I don’t fall down on the job. These students don’t realize how lucky they have it, but I can take the pressure. 

Back to reading sequels. Enjoy your Sunday.


  1. Elisabeth(YSPrincess) says:

    I had no idea the wedding was online. Thanks for all the information!