I love reading. I love children’s books. I love working in the wonderful world of children’s publishing. I think it’s fair to say that publicising books that I thoroughly enjoy reading has to be one of the best things about my job – it’s just so much fun.
With that in mind, when I was approached to write a guest blog post for A Dream of Books covering which Oxford University Press YA titles I was most looking forward to in 2012, my initial thought was something along the lines of . . . ‘Yay!’. Then I looked at just how many exciting YA titles we are publishing on our 2012 list, and the task suddenly became a bit more difficult. With over 15 YA titles publishing next year, I had to set myself some parameters – either that, or risk a never-ending blog post!
So, with the help of A Dream of Books, I scaled back and decided to look at our most hotly anticipated new YA titles for spring 2012 . . .
15 Days Without a Head by Dave Cousins, published on 5 January 2012, £6.99.
15 days to change your life. 15 days to lose it all.
This debut novel by Dave Cousins is superb. Honest, compelling, and at times hilarious, it tells the story of fifteen-year-old Laurence Roach, and his single-handed attempt to keep his family together following the disappearance of his mum. Keith Gray is a fan, and so am I!
The dream of living a ‘normal’ life is exactly that for Laurence. With his Dad dead, his Mum a depressed alcoholic, and his six-year-old brother believing that he is a dog (Scooby-Doo, to be exact), Laurence doesn’t exactly have it easy.
When his mum suddenly disappears, Laurence is left without a head of the family, and the next fifteen days see him spinning an increasingly complicated web of lies. Calling his local radio station impersonating his dead father in an attempt to win an all-expenses-paid luxury holiday, dressing up as his mum in an elaborate act of deception – these are just a few of the things Laurence does to try to keep it all together!
After two weeks on their own, running out of food and money, and with suspicious adults closing in, Laurence finally discovers where his mum has been. And that’s when the trouble really starts . . .
Mortal Chaos by Matt Dickinson, published on 2 February 2012, £6.99.
Some will live. Many will die. All are connected.
A serious page turner. The short, sharp chapters flash between multiple characters all over the world, all involved in heart-stopping scenarios. It is impossible to find an appropriate moment to put this book down. Be prepared to sit on the edge of your seat and devour in one sitting.
The Butterfly Effect: the scientific theory that a single occurrence, no matter how small, can change the course of the universe forever. One beat of a butterfly’s wings is all it takes to set in motion a global chain of events that build to a nerve-jangling climax of mayhem and destruction.
Jamie and Will have bunked off school to go hunting; Kuni, an eighteen-year-old Japanese climber is approaching the summit of Mount Everest; Tina is piloting a troublesome flight from Heathrow to Moscow; Six-year-old Bakili is desperately guarding his family’s crops from bloodthirsty baboons in Malawi; Shelton, an unhinged father in Washington DC, is hooked on revenge and building a bomb . . .
The Girl in the Mask by Marie-Louise Jensen, published on 1 March 2012, £6.99.
Lady by day . . . Thief by night!
Lose yourself in an enchanting world of balls, masquerades and . . . highway robbery! This novel is pure escapism, and I challenge you not to wish for the gift of time travel in order to transport yourself back to Georgian Bath!
Fifteen-year-old Sophia is forced by her father to give up everything she loves, and move to Georgian Bath for ‘the season’ in search of a suitable husband.
Trapped in the social whirl of balls and masquerades, Sophia feels suffocated. To escape the limitations of this man’s world she so despises, at night Sophia swaps ball gowns for breeches and turns to highway robbery to get her revenge!
When one man begins to take a particular interest in her, Sophia must keep her distance, or risk unmasking her secret life . . .
Of course, this is but a snippet of the YA titles we have coming up next year, so do keep an eye out for many more to come!
To celebrate the upcoming releases of all these wonderful books, Jennie is very kindly offering the chance for one lucky person to win a prize pack consisting of copies of all of the titles featured above. This giveaway is only open to entrants within the UK at the request of the publisher and books can obviously only be posted as and when they're published. To enter just fill out the form below. Good luck!
- There will be one winner.
- Open to entrants with UK addresses only. International entrants may enter, provided they have a UK address to send the books to.
- Please fill out the form completely - including email address
- You do not have to be a follower to enter but it's always appreciated
- Deadline for entries will be on 31st December 2011
- Winner(s) will be drawn by random.org
- Winner(s) will be contacted via e-mail, and will be given 48 hours to response. Otherwise, a new winner will be drawn.
- Any details will be deleted after use and will not be passed on to any third party.