It’s easy to focus on exciting new releases in YA fiction, but there are titles that stand the test of time and are still relevant to today’s readers. Throwback Thursdays highlights those novels with enduring themes and appeal.
It may seem like just yesterday when you read about the disturbing main character in Cormier’s Tenderness, but the current reader who is 16 years old was not even born when this book was published. Television and books today are populated with crime shows, serial killers, and loads of suspense, but these books have always had an audience.
Lori is looking for tenderness. Not the kind she receives from her mother’s boyfriends, but true tenderness where someone will notice and care for her. She hopes to find that tenderness in Eric. Eric is also looking for tenderness. This tenderness seems to always be out of reach, except for that fraction of a moment before death. The death he brings to others. Eric is finally leaving jail at the age of 18 for killing his parents. He claims it was self-defense, but Detective Proctor knows better. He believes that Eric has also killed at least two other girls, but can’t prove it. This novel will keep you filled with anticipation as Lori and Eric’s lives intersect and as Detective Proctor is determined to make sure that Eric will never kill again.
#TBT Tenderness by Robert Cormier, published in 1997
Continue reading Throwback Thursday: Tenderness by Robert Cormier
You may feel like you just finished reading The Graceling Realm series, but the current reader who is 16 years old was 8 when this book was published. Some young adult literature has a short shelf-life; pop culture references, trends, technology, even the language teens use to communicate, evolves. Fantasy is often more enduring because the worlds are entirely different from our own, yet the conflicts and themes are universal.
Katsa lives in a world where Gracelings are commonplace. Gracelings are noted by the fact that they have two different colored eyes and a special skill or ability. The skill may be as simple as being an excellent baker or climber, or an excellent swordsman or archer, but it can also be more complicated than that. Katsa’s grace is unique; Her ability is to kill. It does not matter the size or strength of her opponent, Kasha will kill them before they even have time to register what is happening.
However, even with this remarkable power, Katsa is being used by the king, her uncle, as nothing more than muscle. Katsa hates this, but even though she is secretly fighting back and trying to undo the evil her uncle has created, she is still scared to stand up to him. Until she meets Po. Running into Po was an accident. They were both on a mission to save a former king, now known as Prince Tealiff, who was kidnapped. Kasha is doing this undercover as her way to give back for the cruel services performed through her uncle. Po is doing this because this former king is his grandfather. Who kidnapped Prince Tealiff? Why would he matter now? Po plans on finding out and asks Kasha to assist him, which her uncle refuses. Can Katsa find her inner strength to leave the kingdom she has grown up in and help Po and his family? This fantasy novel will keep you on your feet as you go through the multiple layers of deception, danger, and depth. The guarded romance adds to the complicated relationship between Katsa and Po. Continue reading Throwback Thursday: Graceling by Kristin Cashore