Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Two Fab YA's from a Male POV - and a Give-away

Over in the Young Adult Forum @ Absolute Write the lack of male protags in YA often comes up in threads. So true, so true... So I wanted to highlight two awesome reads starring male protags (both read this year).

Both of these books I randomly picked up not having not heard of them. I was only a few chapters into I Know It's Over when I was thinking, mate, this book is good.

I really love that feeling of having zero expectations about a book and then being wowed. Like an unexpected gift.

I Know It's Over - C K Kelly Martin

PURE. UNPLANNED. PERFECT. Those were Nick’s summer plans before Sasha stepped into the picture. With the collateral damage from his parents’ divorce still settling and Dani (his girl of the moment) up for nearly anything, complications are the last thing he needs. All that changes, though, when Nick runs into Sasha at the beach in July. Suddenly he’s neck-deep in a relationship and surprised to find he doesn’t mind in the least. But Nick’s world shifts again when Sasha breaks up with him. Then, weeks later, while Nick’s still reeling from the breakup, she turns up at his doorstep and tells him she’s pregnant. Nick finds himself struggling once more to understand the girl he can’t stop caring for, the girl who insists that it’s still over. (goodreads)

The first thing I noticed is that it is blurbed by Jaclyn Moriarty <3! "This book is compelling and unswervingly honest. It takes on real complex issues with a light, deft touch. The second half broke my heart a little every page or so." Awesome blurb, hey?

As a writer, I am a little in awe of the non-chronological time-line.  Plus, the male POV is truly outstanding. It's honest and raw (such a clich√© word, but, hey, it's true) and complex. And, things just don't turn out how you expect them too. 

Not going to review it, just wanting to tell you that I loved it :) And, I am definitely going to be reading more work by C K Kelly Martin. 

You can read Adele @ Persnickety Snarks review and also what Courtney Summers has to say about it. (both are pretty amazing reviews...)

What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know - Sonya Sones

My name is Robin.
This book is about me.
It tells the story of what happens when after almost 15 pathetic years of loserdom, the girl of my dreams finally falls for me.
That seems like it would be a good thing, right? Only it turns out to be a lot more complicated than that.
Because I'm not gonna lie to you -- there are naked women involved. Four of them, to be exact. Though not in the way you might think.
Don't get me wrong -- my girlfriend's amazing. But the way things have been going lately, I'm starting to believe that the only thing worse than not getting what you want, is getting it. (goodreads)

This book, I just loved it.

First off, it is a verse novel. And I find most verse novels to be compelling and richly drawn. I read this curled up in bed on a rainy day and flew through the pages. The thing about this book is it gets cooler and cooler as it goes on.

There were parts in it where my heart just ached for Robin and Sophie. I was definitely cheering them on. And, some events in the book filled me up with warmth in the best kind of uplifting way. Other events broke my heart and had me holding my breath - I definitely felt the tension and Robin's pain.

This book feels like high school and reminds me why teenagers are so cool and such an incredible age-group to read about. It reminds me how hard it is to be a teenager - but also how awesome it feels.

By the end, I just had this happy feeling :) In fact I have a happy feeling now just thinking about it.

Have you read either of these? What did you think? 

Now for a give-away - yay!

The winner will receive their choice of either I Know It's Over or What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know - just sharing the love :).

I use The Book Depository - so it's open internationally.

To Enter 

Leave a comment (below) and recommend to me either: a favourite verse novel, or a favourite YA novel with a male protag. And I'll use a random number thingy and announce the winner on Sunday the 27th :)


  1. Does Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows count? If not, then I have to say Paper Towns by John Green.

    I just went through the list of books I've read so far this year and I realized that out of all of them, only one had a male protag. I should probably fix this. A few of them had dual PoVs with male/female MCs.

  2. Great reviews! I've never read a verse novel before, and that one sounds really great.

    My favorite YA with male MC is THE THIEF by Megan Whalen Turner. It's labeled MG, but the entire series is a lot more YA. :)

    I have also heard a lot of good things about BEAUTIFUL CREATURES, a YA with male MC.

  3. Wow, i haven't read any of those books ! they sounds great :)

    one book that came to my mind : Running on Dreams by Herb Heiman.

  4. Hmmm. I don't read a lot of male povs....not out of choice but just because theres so many more girls. I actually really like a well done male.

    Any of the Harry Potters are good. Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan is also a stellar series (its rather MG...but when they age it goes more YA.

    Looking for Alaska by John Green.

  5. I'm sorry to say I haven't read either a novel in verse, or a book with a male protag. How sad is that? Maybe I'll pick these books up and check them out, now that I know you liked them!

  6. Sonya Sones = excellent author. I had no idea she did verse novels, though. I recommend you to: It's Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini. Sorry, I'm obsessed with this book. It's about teenagers too! And think about this, the main character is CRAIG! So, now you've got to read it, because if the book can be amazing, even with a normal name like Craig, it must be the bomb!

  7. Great reviews! I'm visiting you from Sandy Shin's blog. :) Welcome to the blog world.

    I liked Twisted by Laurie Halse Anderson. I could so feel like I was a teen age boy while I was reading the book...which lead to some interesting conversations with my hubby.

  8. I love the reviews!I can't wait to read both of these books!

    My favorite male MC YA book is Beastly by Alex Flinn. Then there's Break by Hannah Moskowitz that I really liked too.

  9. Favorite YA from a male POV would have to be a tie between Paper Towns by John Green and Swerve by Phillip Gwynne (who's also Aussie, omg, yay!) :D

  10. Ohhhh, love the new layout Nomes! So pretty :)

    I also LOVED What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know, having been a huge fan of What My Mother Didn't Know, I was always desperate to know more about Robin :)

    My favourite male perspective YA novel is An Abundance of Katherines by John Green

  11. I second Looking for Alaska by John Green. I just read I Know It's Over and thought it was a great read too (and yes, impressive use of past and present tense in the different time periods!).

  12. Break is my favorite YA male novel :) Not romance-heavy, but the male voice is spot. on.

  13. I am fond of a male protagonist and my favourite has to be Miles/Pudge from Looking For Alaska by John Green. He is so unfailingly honest that it is impossible not to like him. James from Maggie Stiefvater's Ballad comes a close second.

  14. I haven't read TOO many male POVs in YA, but one that has stuck with me is Unwind by Neal Shusterman. It's told from three POVs, two of which are male. It's that subtle kind of horrific that is just so gripping.

  15. Great reviews - I'll have to pick these up. My recommendation for you is Getting the Girl by Markus Zusak - another aussie, maybe you've even read him already!

  16. Ooh, I LOVE What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know's author! I haven't read that particular book, but I read One Of Those Hideous Books Where The Mother Dies (yes, that's the title, haha), and it was just awesome. Her style is so fresh and unversey-feeling. :D

    So yeah, that's my recommendation. DEF try reading OoTHBWtMD (<-- whoah that's long), because it's touching, funny, and very surprising at the end.

  17. these books sound fantastic, you definately need to read the one i have just reviewed its brilliant and different

  18. Favorite book with male protagonist would have to be Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta.

    But I agree with Angle, Markus Zusak has written two wonderful novels with a central male character.

  19. I love male POV's, but they are hard to find, so this is a great list.
    My fave has to be Will Grayson, Will Grayson. I LOVE it.
    And Boy Toy by Barry Lyga is another one I like.

  20. Finally!
    I just couldn't see this comment space. My comp's gone bonkers.
    I so, so want this. Wanted to read I Know It's Over for long!
    And th cover of What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know is so gorg!
    My favourite male PoV books are Sue Townsend's The Growing Pains of Adrian Mole and Mark Hadoon's The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-time.
    I haven't read any book that's entirely in verse but I hear Lisa Schroeber is good. My fave book that's interspersed with verse is Ange;a Morrison's Taken By Storm.

    *fingers crossed*

  21. I have to say 48 shades of brown by nick earls for male pov, it was one I read in high school and I loved it! I loved how he was pining away for this girl who was mostly oblivious, so bittersweet. I think it also made me feel like teenage problems were universal not just girl probs or boy probs and it was comforting at the time. I haven't read it in a long time but from what I remember it was really well done.


Thanks for the commenty love :)