As the Australian-in-Residence here at The Midnight Garden, I thought it would be fitting to make my blog debut on a topic close to my heart – young adult literature from the great southern land.
I think I’ve loved Australian YA since I borrowed my first John Marsden from the library, or read my first Melina Marchetta at school. I’ve always been a keen reader, devouring just about anything I could get my hands on, but there’s something about the sense of affinity in reading Australian books that I love. There’s a familiarity to the humour, the dialogue and the often the themes that strikes a chord with me.
Over the last couple of years I’ve added some Australian releases to my shelf of all-time favourite books. Authors like Markus Zusak, Cath Crowley and Craig Silvey have made their way onto my “auto-buy” list, and it’s great to see their work receiving recognition and a wider audience around the world.
So without further ado, here are just a few of the upcoming Australian YA releases for 2012 that I’m eagerly anticipating:
Queen of the Night
by Leanne Hall
Release Date: February 22, 2012
The follow up to the slice of surrealism that was 2009’s Text Prize-winning This is Shyness. I’m excited to see where a reunion between Wildgirl and Wolfboy is going to lead. One thing is for sure, if it’s in Shyness, it’s going to be enticing, unpredictable and just a little strange.
The Reluctant Hallelujah
by Gabrielle Williams
Release Date: February 22, 2012
I am a big fan of Gabrielle Williams’ particular brand of witty humour, and I had a lot of fun with her 2009 release Beatle Meets Destiny. The synopsis for The Reluctant Hallelujah is intriguing: “driving – unlicensed – to Sydney” and “chased by bad guys”? Count me in.
by Shirley Marr
Release Date: April 1, 2012
Full disclosure, Shirley is a Goodreads friend of mine. She’s also completely awesome, and wrote cult-book-in-the-making Fury, which is brilliantly twisted. Preloved sounds funny and off-beat and dark, not to mention the promise of 80s references. Stonewash jeans, anyone?
by Kirsty Eagar
Release Date: April 26, 2012
I adore Kirsty Eagar’s writing. If you’ve read Raw Blue, you’ll be familiar with the gorgeous imagery in her writing and her evocative way of capturing emotion. If I had not already been won over by Eagar’s stunning contemporary debut, the gothic tone of Night Beach’s premise certainly would have done it.
The Howling Boy
by Cath Crowley
Release Date: TBC
Detail on Cath Crowley’s upcoming 2012 release is extremely thin on the ground at the moment. However, I fell madly in love with Graffiti Moon and Chasing Charlie Duskin (titled A Little Wanting Song in the US), and I just know that her next book is going to be incredible. I have very high hopes, and not a doubt that Crowley will deliver in her signature lyrical style.
That’s just a small sample of what’s in store for Australian YA fans this year. I’ll also be on the lookout for new releases from Vikki Wakefield, Liki Wilkinson and Fiona Wood amongst others.
Stay tuned for more updates and reviews from the book scene on my side of the world throughout the year, but until then, happy reading!