Clipper Staff Writer
For readers, summer is that magical time of year when textbooks are no longer competing with the stack of novels – or the full e-reader – patiently waiting for your attention.
At some point, however, that book count is going to get low. Or it’s already low, since you’ve already re-read your favorite series a dozen times but can’t find just the right thing to satisfy your craving.
If you’re in either situation and feeling book deprived, here are some suggestions to help while away the summer hours.
“Hunger Games” with fewer arrows
Dystopian futures make for great fictional fodder, but death-matches can make for brutal reading no matter how well-written they are. If you’re looking for something a little less fatal than the massively popular “Hunger Games” series, Ally Condie’s “Matched” trilogy might be just what you need.
In the trilogy, Condie tells of a world in which The Society makes everyone’s choices for them. Then one young woman realizes she wants to make a different choice, and risks everything in order to follow her heart.
The first two books are “Matched” and “Crossed, with “Reached” coming out this November.
Angsty romance, but no vampires
Even the most die-hard vampire fans (no pun intended) sometimes need a little variety in their lives. For those people, there’s Lauren Kate’s “Fallen” series, which keeps all the tragic romance of “Twilight” but substitutes fallen angels for vampires. This allows the tragic romance of the main duo to span centuries, all the better to maximize the angst, and the requisite love triangle is firmly in place. Since the final book in the series just came out this past May, you won’t even have to wait to find out how the story ends.
If you’re missing “The Vampire Diaries” on CW, you might be surprised to find the stories are right there waiting for you in your local library or bookstore. The TV series is based on a handful of young-adult novels written by L.J. Smith.While they used to be hard to find because they had fallen out of print, all the titles have been re-released as a tie-in to the series. The storyline in the books is different than in the TV series – a basic truth of most adaptations – but Elena, Damon and Stefan are all there looking longingly at one another. Even better, you won’t know what’s going to happen next.
No drawn-out love triangles
For some teenagers, the idea of agonizing over their romantic options sounds like an incredibly boring way to spend an afternoon. If you’re in that category, try “The Age of Miracles,” Karen Thompson Walker’s latest novel and a darling of book critics. Set in a world in which the Earth’s rotation is starting to slow, the novel chronicles the effects of that change on a teen girl and her family.
Poking gentle fun at “Twilight”
There are plenty of jokes online for “Twilight” haters (seriously, just type the word “Twihater” into Google and say goodbye to the next several hours). If you’re looking for something with more plot than snark, however, go with “Team Human.” Written by Justine Larbalestier and Sarah Rees Brennan, the book follows a high school student named Mel focused on saving her friend Cathy from a swooning infatuation with the undead. There are plenty of one-liners, more than a few romantic possibilities and the unexplored comedy gold of a cranky vampire cop.