Anyway, for Christmas I got this (from my dear friend Amy Del Rosso):
It's a t-shirt and the ARC of Grasshopper Jungle, by my very favorite author, Andrew Smith.
Luckily, I read an earlier ARC of this story, because I'm going to use my enthusiasm for reading this new copy to encourage myself to read three of my biggest kid lit gap books:
The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
Before there was such a thing as Young Adult (three years before I was born, in fact), Robert Cormier wrote one of the all time classic books about teens. I'm reading this one now, and am duly impressed by Cormier's grasp of character.
Speak, by Laurie Halse Anderson
I know all about this book. I even participated in the SPEAK LOUDLY Twitter campaign when it was (once again) being challenged, but I still have not read it. I know, I know. This one's up next.
Holes, by Louis Sachar
The trouble started when Stanley was accused of stealing a pair of shoes donated by basketball great Clyde "Sweetfeet" Livingston to a celebrity auction. In court, the judge doesn't believe Stanley's claim that the shoes fell from the sky onto his head. And yet, that's exactly what happened. Oddly, though, Stanley doesn't blame the judge for falsely convicting him. Instead, he blames the whole misadventure on his "no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather." Thanks to this benighted distant relative, the Yelnats family had been cursed for generations. For Stanley, his current troubles are just a natural part of being a Yelnats.
At Camp Green Lake, the warden makes the boys "build character" by spending all day, every day, digging holes: five feet wide and five feet deep. It doesn't take long for Stanley to realize there's more than character improvement going on at Camp Green Lake. The boys are digging holes because the treacherous warden is searching for something, and before long Stanley begins his own search—for the truth.
Fate conspires to resolve it all—the family curse, the mystery of the holes, the drought that destroyed Green Lake, and also, the legend of Kissing Kate Barlow, an infamous outlaw of the Wild West. The great wheel of justice has ground slowly for generations, but now it is about to reveal its verdict.
Having won a Newberry, I can only assume this book is more MG than YA, but the forced labor camp for young people aspect has often been compared to similar thematic elements in my own writing, so I figure it's another must read. No I have not seen the movie, and no I will not see the movie, since I can't stand Shia LeBouf.
What are you reading right now?