Every year the divas at readergirlz ask each of us on their advisory panel for our top ten favorite girl-power books we read during 2009. It's usually a pretty gut-wrenching list to create, as anything with a female main character, regardless of publication date is game. Beyond that, the criteria is created by each of the individual postergirlz.
What I tried to do with my list was pick books that were entertaining, memorable, and containing enough meat that they would have enough fodder if rgz were to pick a title for a month-long feature.
Here's what I gave them:
2009 Top Ten for rgz
1. Blue Plate Special by Michelle D. Kwasney
I've really got to dedicate a whole post to this one. Three girls. Three generations. One family. Three times the drama, three times the heartbreak. But each girl can't help but hope for something a little better than what her mother left her with.
2. Broken Soup by Jenny Valentine
Much like Valentine's last book, this one is quiet and introspective, and very British. Rowen's brother has just died. Her father is entirely absent, and her mother has entirely withdrawn into herself. Reality doesn't really play a part of her mom's world anymore. So it's up to Rowen. Not a big deal, except that means she's got to take care of her little sister, too. And really, she's not completely over her brother's death either.
3. Cracked Up to Be by Courtney Summers
This is a girl you can't help but love - even though she'll be the first one to cut you down. Parker is in pain. No, make that Pain. Something happened, and it was all her fault. She can't forgive herself, she can't stand herself - and as part of the punishment she's going to make darn sure no one else wants to be around her either.
4. The Forrest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
Zombies. I can't help it. IF there were to actually be zombies, this is actually plausible to me. And it makes me want to prepare for the zombie apocalypse. Which I was already worried about.
5. How It Ends by Laura Wiess
The one book sure to reduce you to a quivering pool of slobbery tears. It starts out all normal, then WHAP, this ain't your typical YA anymore.
6. If I Stay by Gaye Foreman
Girl in coma. To Live or To Die...
7. Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpern
Ah, hilarity. What do you do when the only friends you've ever had turn out to suck? Well, it's off into the wild nerd yonder to see if you can to any better than back-stabbers. It shouldn't be too hard, right?
8. Jumping off Swings by Jo Knowles
Teen pregnancy - and how, for once, it effects those around the pregnant teen. Including the father - who's possibly more surprised than any at how this effects him.
9. The Miles Between by Mary Pearson
Coincidences. Is there meaning behind them? Is it fate's payback? Should you steal a car just because it's there, and then escape with three people you don't even like, just because you can?
10. Peace, Love, and Baby Ducks by Lauren Myracle
This is a truly wonder sister story. I don't have any sisters, but I think Myracle really hit the dynamic perfectly. The simultaneous love/hate relationship was well played out.
11. What I Saw and How I Lied by Judy Blundell
I wasn't sure about this one at first. It was a pretty slow-moving train, but as all that tension mounts, and as the stakes get raised, the transformation of Evie is complete and irreparable.
Honorary, but too young for Rgz
1. The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly
This is the book that soothes my Green Gables soul. Even though the passion is for science, rather than books. You just can't help but be charmed by this book.
2. When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
There's something deliciously old-school about this one that, at the same time, feels entirely fresh. I won't go into the insanely convoluted plot (when time travel is involved, how can it help being any other way?).