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Tag: janette rallison

When You Wish Upon a Star

perseid meteorThis week is the best viewing time for the Perseid meteor shower. In celebration of this event, here’s a book list full of wishing.

At First Sight by Catherine Hapka
On a class trip to the planetarium, Lauren meets a guy. They have a moment together in the dark room before they’re whisked away. Lauren didn’t believe in Love at first sight, but now she’s rethinking her views. If only she knew his name.

Just One Wish by Janette Rallison
Annika’s younger brother has cancer. She desperately wants him to believe that he will survive his upcoming surgery. She convinces him to make a wish. Jeremy wishes that his TV idol would come visit him. Now Annika must track the idol down and convince him to visit her brother.

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Writing the Good Fight: Teen Characters With Cancer

flickr image by SCA Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget

Writing about cancer can be challenging, making even the most confident author nervous and even uncomfortable. It’s a private subject for some, and in our attempts to be sensitive and supportive, it’s difficult to know what to say and what not to say unless you’ve personally experienced the disease in one of its countless terrible forms.

Enter John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars, a heart-wrenching novel featuring teens with cancer that’s more than that. While the disease plays a major role in the book, it’s not the focus of the story, and while characters Hazel Grace and Gus are afflicted with cancer, it doesn’t define them or their abilities. In any other writer’s hands, a novel about cancer-stricken teens may have delved into tearful sentimentality, but Green gives his story and cover for The Fault in Our Starscharacters, particularly Hazel, the strength, wit, and humor to be both brutally honest and realistic about her slim chances of survival.

When Hazel Grace states that “cancer books suck,” I was intrigued by her declaration. What books could exist in her fictional world that merit such a harsh assessment? More to the point, what books about teens dealing with cancer are available for readers like you and me? John Green isn’t the first young adult author to tackle writing about the disease, but he’s certainly set the bar high in terms of depicting an honest, realistic portrayal of it. What follows are titles that show that cancer books do not suck.


And the winner is…

It’s my favorite time of the year! The 84th Academy Awards are set to take place on Sunday, February 26 on ABC and I cannot wait. If you haven’t had the chance yet, be sure to take a look at all the talented actors, actresses, producers, directors, and more nominated this year. While I don’t consider myself a tried and true movie buff, I definitely watch my fair share of movies, from really bad movies with awful graphics to the silly and cartoonish. There’s something exciting about seeing my favorite celebrities all decked out in their finest, about moaning and groaning through the overly long speeches, and wondering how they are going to dramatize the “in remembrance” portion of the evening. Yep, I’m an Oscars junkie and proud of it!

If you’re anything like me, you may be interested in reading some fun teen lit that focuses on the glitz and glamour of the movies and celebrities. There are a plethora of great titles out there so read on to find out some of the highlights and be sure to add your own suggestions in the comments! Perhaps you want to make an Oscar themed book display or have an Oscar YA party. These books will help you bring on your own inner star.

YALSA’s Popular Paperbacks list is a great place to start. The 2009 Fame and Fortune list is a great resource to “read all about teens aspiring to make it big.” This list focuses on several of the talents celebrities are famous for including acting, music, and modeling. And to add to that great YALSA list, be sure to check out the 2012 Fabulous Films for Young Adults: Song and Dance list. Combining books and movies is always a winning combination for any movie buff.