friday5 for October 19, 2012

Lots of booky news to discuss this week so let's get to it!

1. In semi-useless since the week is coming to an end news, it's YALSA Teen Read Week! Basically, this week is all about teens reading--reading anything! Because that's what matters. Not the what, but the it. Hmm. Did that make sense? No, but I think you know where I'm going with this. I'm big on recommendations, not restrictions when it comes to teens reading and I'd take a teen reading garbage (literally) over a teen reading nothing. Trust me, as you get older, it's harder to find time to read, so if it's not already a priority in your life, you're less likely to make it one. Get reading at a young age, thank the world later. Trust me. Reading will one day be one of the biggest delights of your week. And you'll actually be okay with that :)

2. In SQUEEEE news, the latest Divergent casting rumor has Shailene Woodley lined up to play Tris. As with all novel-to-film casting rumors, this one appears to be resulting in mixed reactions (as far as I'm concerned, that's a symptom of a devoted fan base, which I'm cool with when it comes to awesome YA reads). Personally, I think she was fantastic in The Descendents and she totally fits the image of Tris that I have in my head (I can't even remember what colour hair Tris is supposed to have, but Shailene is how I've always pictured her). With characters like Tris (or Katniss--not Bella--but Katniss or anyone in the HP universe), it's not about looks, it's about acting ability (with Bella, it was always more about looks, maybe because such a large portion of the story is about her pretty, pretty hair. Kidding.. kinda...). Shailene can definitely pull off the part. I'm officially on Team Woodley.

3. Johnny Depp is set to have his own imprint at Harper Collins. There's not much else to say about this except that Johnny Depp just added about a million more awesome points to his already high awesome point tally. The man is a force of nature. 

4. I suppose I should include a bit of non-book-related news to this week's list so let's talk about Tina Fey and Amy Poehler hosting the 2013 Golden Globes. This has potential to be brilliant or boring. Not because Tina or Amy will screw it up, but because awards shows in general tend to screw it up. The hosts rarely have free reign. And yes, I know there are reasons for that. But it puts a damper on some of the amazing comedic talent we could be enjoying. That said, I think Tina and Amy will be able to put on a good show without that censored feeling we're usually subjected to. Their comedy doesn't come from a place of controversy so it should work out well. Either of them would do a fantastic job, but as a pair, I think they'll rock it.

5. Finally, this week's YA book rec is Beta by Rachel Cohn, the first in a new series. For me, the cover is kinda meh, but the plot sounds fantastic!

Feeling a little indigestion-y?
Elysia is created in a laboratory, born as a sixteen-year-old girl, an empty vessel with no life experience to draw from. She is a Beta, an experimental model of a teenage clone. She was replicated from another teenage girl, who had to die in order for Elysia to exist.

Elysia’s purpose is to serve the inhabitants of Demesne, an island paradise for the wealthiest people on earth. Everything about Demesne is bioengineered for perfection. Even the air induces a strange, euphoric high, which only the island’s workers—soulless clones like Elysia—are immune to.

At first, Elysia’s life is idyllic and pampered. But she soon sees that Demesne’s human residents, who should want for nothing, yearn. But for what, exactly? She also comes to realize that beneath the island’s flawless exterior, there is an under­current of discontent among Demesne’s worker clones. She knows she is soulless and cannot feel and should not care—so why are overpowering sensations cloud­ing Elysia’s mind?

If anyone discovers that Elysia isn’t the unfeeling clone she must pretend to be, she will suffer a fate too terrible to imagine. When her one chance at happi­ness is ripped away with breathtaking cruelty, emotions she’s always had but never understood are unleashed. As rage, terror, and desire threaten to overwhelm her, Elysia must find the will to survive.

The first in a dazzlingly original science fiction series from best-selling author Rachel Cohn, Beta is a haunting, unforgettable story of courage and love in a cor­rupted world.
(Summary from
Cloning seems to be one of "the next big thing"s in YA and this looks to be an interesting take on it.  Paranormal was reigning for a while there, and let's face it, will always have a home, but I'm happy to see more and more quality sci-fi YA reads making the rounds. It's a thrilling genre and I definitely want more devour-able sci-fi YA!

As a final note, I'm headed on a mini-vacation this weekend so there will be no post on Monday. If I get my act together, I may be able to get something up on Tuesday or Wednesday, but if not, I'll be back on Friday with another friday5! See you then, if not sooner!