Monday, April 13, 2020

The Rules and Regulations for Mediating Myths and Magic

The Rules and Regulations for Mediating Myths and Magic.  F. T. Lukens.  Interlude, 2019.   300p.   978-1945053245.

Bridger needs to go to college, but he and his single mom just do not have enough money.  True, he could go to college in town, but if he went out of state, he could begin again as himself, a boy far too interested in Leo, the local football hero.  Where to find a job?  Craigslist?  Bridger finds an ad that advises the applicant to come in through the Blue Door, not the front door.  Bridger finds the blue door around the back, on the attic, with no ladder.  And a girl obviously looking to apply for the job too.
When Bridger makes it in the room, there is no one waiting.  He hears voices, murmurings.
His second day on the job, he meets a werewolf.  And pixies. 

This is jut a really fun novel, the beginning of a series, which finds Bridger as the assistant of an intermediary, Pavel, whose job it is to find “myths” out of place and send them back where they belong.  Bridger must approach a unicorn and ask her to leave.  It’s a good thing he can, because, you know….
Bridger and Pavel must find why the myths are suddenly attracted to Lake Michigan and eliminate the problem before the real world collides with the myth world. 

Bridger’s best friend is Astrid… so grab your Bullfinch’s Mythology and a book on cryptozology, and play along!  If you are in eighth grade, reading Hero Stories, this is for you!

Recommended 14 up
drinking, gay friends, homosexuality, magic, prejudice, sexual questioning, straight friends, vampires, and violence.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

The Meaning of Birds

The Meaning of Birds  by Jaye Robin Brown

Jess is still kind of a mess when she meets Vivi, betweem grieving the death of her dad and trying to cope with her anger at classmates who harass the "gay girl".  But Vivi changed all that.  Vivi doesn't just love Jess, she also encourages Jess to pursue an artistic future.

And then, suddenly, Vivi died.

Reeling from loss, Jess retreats back into old (bad) habits to cope.  She drinks, she skips schools, she gets into fights, and she throws out her art portfolio--because art reminds her of Vivi, and Vivi is dead.

The narrative skips back-and-forth in time, from scenes labeled "Then" featuring Vivi and Jess together, before Vivi got sick, alternating with scenes labeled "Now", when Jess tries to figure out how to think about her future.  

This compelling story features flawed characters, including Jess and Vivi, and also their friends, families, and teachers. 

Highly recommended.