Tag Archives: This is Shyness

Queen of the Night by Leanne Hall

To celebrate the release of Leanne Hall’s new book, Iris and the Tiger, I’m highlighting her previous YA novels, This is Shyness and Queen of the Night.  Leanne’s books are some of my all-time favourite books and I can’t rate them highly enough.  If you haven’t read these ones already go and grab a copy now.  Also, check out my review of Leanne’s latest book, Iris and the Tiger.

The Text Publishing Prize for Young Adult and Children’s Writing has introduced me to some of my favourite writers.  The first winner in 2008 was Richard Newsome, author of the brilliant Billionaire’s Curse Trilogy, and the second winner was Leanne Hall, author of one of my favourite books of 2010 called This is Shyness.  In This is Shyness, Leanne introduced us to the suburb of Shyness where it’s always dark because the sun never rises.  This mysterious suburb is home to all sorts of weird and wonderful people, including the Kidds who are hooked on sugar, the Dreamers, and Wolfboy.  The story is focused on one night in Shyness where Wildgirl meets Wolfboy, and it’s been stuck in my head ever since I read it.  Thankfully, Leanne wrote a sequel, which has just been released called Queen of the Night.

9781921758645For six months Nia has tried to forget Wolfboy, the mysterious boy she met in Shyness.  The boy who said he’d call but didn’t.

Then, one night, her phone rings.  The things Wolfboy says draw her back to the suburb of Shyness, where the sun doesn’t rise and dreams and reality are difficult to separate.  The Darkness is changing, and Wolfboy’s friend is in trouble.

And Nia decides to become Wildgirl once more.

Queen of the Night is just as strange, mysterious and wonderful as This is Shyness.  It’s one of those follow-up books where you find yourself right back in that place you loved as soon as you start reading.  I felt that same sense of fascination about Shyness and I wanted to know everything about this mysterious place.  Some of the questions I had from the previous book were answered, but Leanne also added to the mystery and I get the feeling we don’t quite know everything about Shyness and the weird things that happen under the cover of constant darkness.  There is still a lot we don’t know about Doctor Gregory and his strange experiments and I hope that we get to learn more about Diana. I loved being able to get inside Wolfboy and Wildgirl’s heads more in this book, and I really liked the ‘Inception’ vibe in the second part of the story.   Like Wildgirl in the story, I got quite disorientated by Shyness.  I would forget that just because it’s dark in Shyness, it could actually be mid-morning outside Shyness.   If you liked This is Shyness you’ll love Queen of the Night, and if you haven’t read Shyness you need to get your hands on a copy.  I hope that Leanne has more in mind for Wildgirl and Wolfboy because I’m certainly not ready to leave them behind.

 

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Weird and wonderful world of Shyness

To celebrate the release of Leanne Hall’s new book, Iris and the Tiger, I’m highlighting her previous YA novels, This is Shyness and Queen of the Night.  Leanne’s books are some of my all-time favourite books and I can’t rate them highly enough.  If you haven’t read these ones already go and grab a copy now.  Also, check out my review of Leanne’s latest book, Iris and the Tiger.

Cover imageWelcome to Shyness, where the sun never rises and the darkness hides the dregs of humanity.  It’s in this strange place, in a bar called the Diabetic Hotel, that Wildgirl meets Wolfboy and they step out into a night that they’ll never forget.  Both Wildgirl and Wolfboy are hiding from a past they are desperate to forget, but as the story progresses we find out who they truly are.

This is Shyness, by the winner of the 2009 Text Prize, Leanne Hall is one of the most unique Young Adult books that I’ve read in a long time.  Leanne has created truly memorable characters that have so much depth.  You get drawn into both of their stories and can’t help but care about them.  The narrative alternates between the two characters so you see events from different perspectives and know how they feel about each other.

I also loved Leanne’s other creations, including the Kidds (dangerous children high on sugar and willing to mug anybody for a sugar fix), the Dreamers (teenagers who take drugs so that they can sleep and dream for longer), and the menacing Doctor Gregory.

The world of Shyness is terrifically weird but truly unique and once you get a taste of it, you’ll never want to leave.

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My favourite YA love stories

Paranormal romance is one of my least favourite genres, because often the romance totally overwhelms the story.  Some of my favourite YA books from the past few years have centered around teenage relationships, whether it’s a girl who has to remind herself every morning about the guy she loves, a red notebook that bring a guy and a girl closer together, or a terminal illness that gives two teens a shared experience.  I’ve listed my favourite YA love stories below (with links to my reviews).  The characters in these books feel like real people, with real problems, who have realistic relationships.

What are your favourite YA love stories?

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Sequel to This is Shyness coming in 2012

One of my favourite books of 2010 was a Young Adult book called This is Shyness by Australian author, Leanne Hall (read my review here).  I’ve known for a while that Leanne has been writing a sequel and was excited to discover on the Text Publishing website yesterday that it’s called Queen of the Night and is being released in February 2012.  If you haven’t read it but love quirky YA books you really should rush out and get hold of a copy.  Leanne was the winner of the Text Prize for Young Adult and Children’s Writing in 2009.

To whet your appetite, here’s the blurb for Queen of the Night:

“The dark is dangerous. So is the past. So are your dreams.

For six months Nia—Wildgirl—has tried to forget Wolfboy, the mysterious boy she spent one night with in Shyness—the boy who said he’d call but didn’t.

Then Wolfboy calls. The things he tells her pull her back to the suburb of Shyness, where the sun doesn’t rise and dreams and reality are difficult to separate. There, Doctor Gregory has seemingly disappeared, the Darkness is changing and Wolfboy’s friend is in trouble. And Nia decides to become Wildgirl once more.

The sequel to the 2009 Text Prize-winning This Is Shyness is about the difficulty of recreating the past—about how the Darkness no longer sets Wolfboy and Wildgirl free.”

You can pre-order Queen of the Night on the Text Publishing website now.  Text are a Melbourne based publisher and are one of my favourites.  They always publish really interesting and original titles, especially for Young Adults.

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