Every year the Alex Awards committee does a bang-up job selecting 10 outstanding books published for adults with appeal for teens.’  But y’know – there’s a heck of a lot more than 10!’  Every so often in my non-YA reading (and for the record, i read a lot of SF, fantasy, horror and comix…) i pause and think “hmm…I wonder if this author realized they were writing an excellent teen book?!”‘  Admit it – you do the same thing.’  I call ’em “Accidental Teen Books (ATB)”‘ ‘  Well, why not share these gems?’  Let’s get to it:

My first ATB comes to us from Scotland bearing claws, pop-tarts and fab ensembles; it’s Martin Millar’s’ grungy comic romp through the lycan underground entitled “Lonely Werewolf Girl.

The novel centers on 17-year-old Kalix MacRinnalch, the youngest daughter of a ruling werewolf clan.’  She’s on the run in London after mortally wounding her father after he banished her older boyfriend.’  She’s addicted to laudanum (yes, you read that right), suicidally depressed, a binge-eater, semi-illiterate…and the most powerful wolf in the clan.’  Hunted by her brothers, only her sister Thrix has any feelings for her, but she’s too busy running her fashion design company and dressing the fabbity-fabulous and oh-so-obsessed with fashion Malveria, Queen of the Fire Elementals, to help.’  Toss in two dippy college kids who rescue Kalix from the street and a couple of drunken punk-rawking werewolf cousins and the fight for the MacRinnalch throne is only beginning to get complicated!

Funny,’ wild, and reading’ like a great ‘Buffy’ episode (only with werewolves.’  and scotch.’  and on laughing gas.), the novel is quick and snappy.’  Kalix is every YA problem novel character amped up to a near-ridiculous degree – but still manages to fight her way to a hopeful conclusion.’  Pair this as a street level companion with Alex winner ‘Sharp Teeth’ and get ready to howl at the moon!

Until next time – Happy reading!

About Ken Petrilli

I'm the Teen Services Librarian at the New Rochelle Public Library in New Rochelle, NY, and I'm currently co-convenor for YALSA's Intellectual Freedom Interest Group and Chair for the Baker & Taylor Conference Grant Jury. When I'm not being a librarian I'm being a heavy metal guitar player, a hopeless otaku and a general all-around pop-culture junkie.

2 Thoughts on “The “Accidental” Teen Book (vol. 1)

  1. I want to read this book SO badly now. XD

  2. I think that almost all of Jodi Picoult’s books would be great teen reads. Most of them feature a teen protagonist, and they are riveting. Also Picoult has a deep understanding of teen voice. I wonder where she learned that technique? My fave by her is My Sister’s Keeper, where basically this teen girl has been created knowing that she will be an excellent blood and possibly organ donor for her older sister, who has been ill since day 1. You get to hear each family member’s perspective, and each character is sympathetic. It’s an amazing read.

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