Monday, December 8, 2014

Hits the hard stuff; sees stars

My audience-versus-subject preposition obsession is well documented. “About not for 4eva,” and whatnot. So can you see why The Bunker Diary reviews fill me with such perverse delight?

“The Bunker Diary: why wish this book on a child?

“The winner of this year’s Carnegie Medal for an outstanding book for children is a vile and dangerous story. Kevin Brooks’s book contains heroin addiction, attempted rape, torture and murder[…]

“As Brooks revealed in his acceptance speech, he fought for 10 years to get this novel into print, and was repeatedly told that it wouldn’t work for children unless he changed the plot to allow for the possibility of hope. He won the day and, as it stands, his novel is a uniquely sickening read.”

The Telegraph

“Brooks’ latest is not an easy novel, but it’s one that begs for rereading to suss the intricacies of its construction of plot, character development and insight into the human condition.

“Not for everyone, this heady novel is worthy of study alongside existentialist works of the 20th century.”

—starred, Kirkus

It's not a title for everyone: some may be unsettled by the harsh realities the protagonist faces, while others will be fascinated by the simple complexity of Brooks's prose and truly effective storytelling. A unique choice that will get teens talking."

—starred, School Library Journal

"When this latest book from controversy-stirrer Brooks won the 2014 Carnegie Medal in the UK, up piped a familiar chorus of damnation from the frequently scandalized. It was too bleak, too dark, not for kids. The naysayers almost got it right: it is, rather,for everyone, playing just as well as can't-stop-reading entertainment as it does an allegorical passage into darkness.”

—starred, Booklist

Delightful. Just delightful. Keep ‘em coming. (Gratuitous Merle GIF for Carrie. Mr. Kraus of Booklist is welcome over for a drink anytime.)

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

A chain of events

So I got this email a couple years ago.


And I followed Tess’s advice, and I bought the  manuscript, and Kate worked like crazy on it.

And for a while I thought this guy:

Was as imaginary as this guy:

Kate straightened me out eventually, and she still liked me enough that she told me about this stuff:

Which tastes way better than it photographs.

Eventually, we published this last spring:

And it went pretty well (⋆⋆⋆⋆, etc.).

And then today this happened.

Good year, eh?