Tag Archives: YA Fiction

Book Review: Girl Reporter by Tansy Rayner Roberts

28 Dec


Living up to the standards of your mother is no easy thing sometimes. Especially when you are Friday Valentina, daughter of Tina Valentina. Tina Valentina broke barriers as a girl reporter interviewing the Australian superhero Solar and breaking news about Australian superheroes for decades. To this day, Tina Valentina is THE Girl Reporter. That’s a lot to live up to.

Living in the 21st century, instead of writing for outfits like Women’s Weekly, Friday has a YouTube channel where she covers superheroes in her own way, like mother, like daughter. Hey, she’s just gotten one million hits on her channel. Friday’s huge! She’s also grown up in a world where superheroes are real and a thing, and she is possibly the daughter of one, or at least all the gossip and tabloids suggest so anyway. Her mother doesn’t talk about that either.  

So in a 21st century world where superheroes are a thing and you are trying to follow in your mother’s trailblazing path…and your mother suddenly disappears, then your course of action is clear: Use your skills and existing connections to Australia’s superheroes to go find her. Rescue Mom, get the story. Even if dimension hopping is involved. Even if secrets about your Mom’s history, and the history of Australian superheroes get exposed in the process. Continue reading


Book Review: Valhalla by Ari Bach

15 Oct

Valhalla, written by Ari Bach, is dark, gritty, dangerous, and subtly representative.  Bach unpacks his new world, layering loud violence, subtle queer identities, and a disturbing dystopian premise that promises an interesting alternative.  Valhalla pushes the boundaries of science fiction to make you question the lines drawn between dystopian governments, outside companies, and the people who make up the world those entities control, and sets up the foundation for a strong trilogy that centers around a queer female protagonist. Continue reading

Book Reviews: Martian Girls, Home and Abroad

25 Aug

Martians Abroad by Carrie Vaughn & Mars Girls by Mary Turzillo

Two young adult (YA) novels featuring feisty teen heroines from Mars recently landed in my to-be-read pile. Beyond the surface similarity between their protagonists, the two novels diverge completely, each with unique focus and drive, and different kinds of success. Continue reading

My Superpower: Geoffrey Girard

24 Sep

My Superpower is a regular guest column on the Skiffy and Fanty blog where authors and creators tell us about one weird skill, neat trick, highly specialized cybernetic upgrade, or other superpower they have, and how it helped (or hindered!) their creative process as they built their project. Today we welcome Geoffrey Girard to talk about how his Supreme Strategic Suspicions relate to Cain’s Blood

Cain's Blood by Geoffrey Girard

Cain’s Blood by Geoffrey Girard

In Cain’s Blood, the teenaged clones of infamous serial killers (Bundy, Gacy, Berokowitz, Dahmer, etc.) cause all sorts of nasty havoc. I was somewhat puzzled by early reviews that focused on how “dark and violent” the book is. I’d never really thought about that. I just wrote about what might happen next, the most-likely thing in a given situation.  When Scott Smith, the author of The Ruins, called the book “very dark,” I didn’t think much of that either, until I watched The Ruins for the first time in years and thought: “THIS guy thinks I’m dark!” It was the first time I stopped to consider what I’d ultimately created. And How. Continue reading

Check it Out! Competition to win Celine Kiernan’s Into the Grey

1 Sep

One of our favoritest authors in the whole wide world, Celine Kiernan, has a new novel coming out this month!  Which means we’re going to have to interview her again soon (*hinthint* Celine).

Into the Grey is a YA novel about a boy who is losing his twin brother to a ghost:

‘The scream was awful – a horrible desolate cry…the child led my unresisting brother up the path and further into the tangled garden. Out of my sight’. My name is Patrick Finnerty. I am fifteen and I’m losing my brother. A ghost is stealing him away. I know how crazy that sounds. But my brother, my twin, is going to die; I’m watching him die. No one else can see what’s happening. What can I do? The answers seem to lie within the memory of a dream – between this world and the next. Within The Grey. But I don’t want to go into The Grey. I don’t want to. I’ve seen what it’s like!

In honor of the upcoming release, Celine is hosting a competition to win a copy of the book!  You should head over to her blog and check things out.  All she is asking for is a simple, up to 200 word, description of what it would be like to be a ghost!  Sounds positively spooky.

So go to it!  For a recap of how much we love Celine and how wonderful she is, please feel free to check out our Interviews with her over here:

The Skiffy and Fanty Show #28a: An Interview w/ Celine Kiernan

The Skiffy and Fanty Show #28b — An Interview w/ Celine Kiernan (part two)

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