Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Paper Valentine by Brenna Yovanoff

 Kady's got her first favorite of the year. This looks like one creepy and awesome book!

Paper Valentine by Brenna Yovanoff

Hey guys, guess what? I just finished my first Top Ten in 2013 book! I know the new year is only 4 days old but when you know, you know. And I totally know.

It's the hottest July on record (which is a little weird since I normally think of Brenna Yovanoff as a cold writer but just go with it), crows are dropping dead of a mysterious virus and someone in Hannah's hometown of Muncy is killing tween girls and leaving handmade valentines with their bodies. Normally all of these things would combine to make Hannah more than happy to stay inside with the windows and doors locked, but her best friend Lillian died 6 months ago and has been haunting her ever since. Lillian is pushing Hannah to solve the murders and Lillian is not a girl that you can say no to, even in death. Complicating matters is Hannah's new mandate to accompany her little sister everywhere, her dissolving friend group and her growing attraction to wrong-side-of-the-tracks, everyone's-first-suspect, Clorax-bleached-blond-hair and broad-shoulders Finny Boone. With Lillian's ghost at her side, Hannah begins to investigate the killings in hopes of making her town safe again, all while trying to figure out why she couldn't protect the one girl she loved, Lillian, from herself.

Oh my gosh you guys, this book. It gave me all the feelings. I want to hug Hannah for a very long time. I want to get wrapped up in Finny Boone (and did you read his description? He should not be attractive, but he is). I want Hannah to give me fashion advice. I want to chat with Lillian about her life philosophy because while it didn't work out for her so well, what with the being dead and all, I think she has some interesting things to say.

Brenna Yovanoff is part of the Merry Sisters of Fate, a writing circle with Maggie Steifvater and Tessa Gratton. Together they've released a collection of short stories (see our review here) and attempt to publish weekly stories on their website that explore "the dark, the weird, and the disturbingly beautiful" which also serves as a perfect descriptor for this new solo book. Paper Valentine has shades of Wintergirls, Hold Still  (see our posts on this book) and Unspoken (see our review here) (so if you enjoyed any of those books this one should definitely make it's way onto your reading list) but to compare it directly to books about anorexia, suicide or gothic supernaturals just because all the elements are there would be a disservice to the creepy, cold feeling (even in the middle of a heat wave) world that Yovanoff has created.

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