Sooooo I've been on a sort of blogging hiatus for the past month or so... It was totally unplanned but I guess you could say it started because of school? Yeah, I don't know how other college bloggers like Nicole at WORD for Teens do it. I should probably go back and read her post on how she juggles college and blogging. :P
Anyway, though I'm not gonna be posting quite as regularly as I used to (But I'll be back soon, I promise!), I do have the awesome opportunity to share this great guest post with you today and in the process I get to promote Ilsa J. Bick's newest novel Shadows which is the sequel to Ashes! If you haven't read Ashes yet, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?!?! It's one of the best dystopians I've read in ages! It's fresh, gritty, and downright terrifying. You will love it, I assure you.
But this isn't about Ashes, this is about Ilsa, Shadows, and her favorite childhood reads, and well, I'll let her post speak for itself. Take it away Ilsa!
To be honest, I have no favorites. I know: that’s terrible. While my parents always made sure I had plenty of books, classics and otherwise, they didn’t read much to me, mainly because they both worked really long hours and didn’t have time. But they never skimped on books, and so I read tons. Their greatest gift was a subscription to some young readers’ book of the month club, and I tore through all those. I also hung in the library after school while I waited for a parent to pick me up (we lived way in the sticks), and so got really friendly with the librarians, who were always putting books in my hands, too.
So, instead of a favorite book—because, honestly, anyone who was telling me a good story at the time was my favorite author—I guess the book that first made an impression, an episode I actually remember, very vividly, was reading Charlotte’s Web. This was in first grade, I think, or maybe second. Our teacher allowed us to read if we were done with whatever work we were doing at the time, and I remember sitting there, cross-legged, devouring that book, coming to the part where Charlotte dies—and bursting into tears. I know this because we had to line up for lunch, and I recall the teacher coming over and asking what was the matter. I was so choked up, crying so hard, I couldn’t even tell her. That teacher, what a nice woman: she asked if I’d read something sad, and I think I managed to nod. She gave me a hug and a tissue, and that was that.
But that book really got to me, and I think it’s because that was the first time I ever considered that parents could die. You don’t think about that as a kid. Your parents are always there. Indeed, it’s important for you to believe that because life is scary and hard, and virtually no kid can function if the family’s in danger. (In fact, think of some of the greatest children’s and middle grade books—things like A Wrinkle in Time—and you realize that having an intact family, rescuing a parent, making the family whole again is a key concern. So, Charlotte’s dying is really about a parent’s death, and the sudden dissolution of family. The genius of the book is that Wilbur gets a new mom every year or so. For Wilbur, mom (or parental substitute) is and will always be there, for the rest of his life.
So, does that make the book a favorite? I guess . . . but it’s such a wide world: so many books, so little time, so many wonderful memories.
I loved the story of Charlotte's Web too, though I don't think I was quite as traumatized by it was Ilsa was. Haha. What are some of your guyses favorite childhood reads? I was obsessed with The Boxcar Children, Nancy Drew, and then any stories involving mice. Random, but true. :)
So now that you've read about Ilsa's favorite childhood reads, I get a chance to talk to you about why we're really here! TO PROMOTE SHADOWS WOOT!!!! Don't know anything about Shadows? Read on!
The Apocalypse does not end. The Changed will grow in numbers. The Spared may not survive.
Even before the EMPs brought down the world, Alex was on the run from the demons of her past and the monster living in her head. After the world was gone, she believed Rule could be a sanctuary for her and those she’d come to love.
But she was wrong.
Now Alex is in the fight of her life against the adults, who would use her, the survivors, who don’t trust her, and the Changed, who would eat her alive.
Welcome to Shadows, the second book in the haunting apocalyptic Ashes Trilogy: where no one is safe and humans may be the worst of the monsters.
I've already read Shadows and it is AWESOME! If you're a fan of dystopian novels, zombies, or maybe just a book that's super intense and isn't afraid to push boundaries then this book and series is for you!
In case your totally in the dark about this trilogy of awesome dystopian zombie survivalness you can find more info on the first book here.
Have you already read Ashes, but need a bit of a refresher before you dive into Shadows? Check out Ilsa's recap post of Ashes here. Personally, I wish I had known about this post before reading Shadows. Things would have been MUCH less confusing that way. >.<
Also, be sure to support Ilsa by checking out her official website/blog, and by following her on Twitter!