NEED by Carrie Jones (Bloomsbury, 2008),
ages 12+, 320 pages. On shelves now!
Seems like only yesterday John Wayne moseyed into the alphabet soup kitchen to rustle up a big pot of soup for the little lady in honor of Girl, Hero (Flux, 2008). I guess he’s done a mighty fine job of making her cowboy up with that smokin’ keyboard of hers, because this time, she’s created an awesome paranormal romance.
High school junior, Zara, depressed after her stepfather’s death, is sent to stay with her grandmother, Betty, in rural Maine. A self declared phobia collector, Zara must cope with a new school, a cold, remote environment, and painful memories. To make matters worse, she’s being stalked by a mysterious man, and there have been reports of young boys going missing. In a suspenseful plot which offers surprises at every turn, Zara learns that the stalker is actually a pixie with uncontrollable needs, who’ll stop at nothing to fufill them.
So, whom can she trust to help her? Bouncy, endearing Issie and Hollywood-smile Devyn, who befriend her right away? Or maybe overachieving Ian, who seems a little too anxious to win her favor. What about gorgeous, brown-eyed Nick, who makes her feel all wiggly inside, and vows to always protect her?
Readers who like a little blood sucking and shapeshifting served up with a good side of smoldering romance will eagerly devour this fast, enjoyable read. Zara is appealingly forthright in her non-violent, socially consciousness way, displaying newfound courage as she outsmarts the enemy and faces her greatest fears — never feeling anything again (after watching her stepdad die), and the all-encompassing, menacing cold. What could be more unnerving than discovering those closest to you are not who they seem, and that instead of being sent to a place of safety, you’ve been thrown directly into the path of danger?
Need has been receiving enthusiastic reviews, and is on the Winter Kids Indie Next List. So, ski, sled, or snowshoe over to your nearest brick and mortar, or click on through to your favorite indie bookstore pronto! You must do this immediately, to avoid developing pixiophobia (fear of pixies who make people wear glitter lipstick while eating mashed potatoes).
And now, please join me — humans, pixies, weres, all, in congratulating Carrie!! Note: Bad pixies do not like iron or metal, so bring extra spoons! (You’ll have to read the book to find out about the forks.)
Today’s Special: Pixie-proof Soup* served in a crown of forks
(sprinkle on pixie dust if you like to eat dangerously)
*This soup will repel pixies long enough for you to enjoy Need, and is especially effective at curing these phobias:
Mageirocophobia (fear of cooking)
Deipnophobia (fear of dining)
Phagophobia (fear of eating and swallowing)
Sitophobia (fear of food)
And most important, Philemaphobia (fear of kissing).
For more about Carrie and her books, visit her website and Live Journal blog, .
Carrie discusses Need with Tami Lewis Brown at Through the Tollbooth.
Jeri Smith-Ready also has a cool and funny Carrie interview and a special book giveaway here. Go over and comment for the chance to win a signed copy of Need; deadline is Sunday, December 28th.
Other blog reviews:
*Special thanks to Tricia of The Miss Rumphius Effect for passing on the ARC!