Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Happy Birthday, Blog!

Hello, World!

The plan for this blog is to post on the birthday of my babies... my books. :)

Of course, as everyone knows, nothing ever goes to plan. And so, from time to time, I will diverge from this structure and post whatever the hell I want.

And so comes my first blog post.

Three books of mine (and by mine, I mean by authors that I, a literary agent, represent) came out these past two months.

The Sweetness of Salt by Cecilia Galante (Bloomsbury, November 2010)

Tempestuous by Lesley Livingston (HarperTeen, December 2010)

The Transformation of Things by Jillian Cantor (Avon, November 2010)

You can read summaries for these books online. I won't waste the space on this blog.

Instead, I will focus on what I love about these books-- and the writers of these books.

What Cecilia Galante does so incredibly well is create characters that are real. Characters that readers care deeply about. She's writes both middle grade and young adult novels (The Sweetness of Salt is young adult), but in a lot of ways her writing defies genre. A person of any age could pick up any one of her books and not only enjoy it, but take something away with them.

The Sweetness of Salt is about Julia, a girl who has just graduated as her high school valedictorian. Julia is a girl who has her thoughtfully mapped out her plans for the future... and then her much older sister comes back and opens Julia's eyes to something in her past that could change everything. What I love about Julia is that she's like a lot of us. She has plans. She knows, or thinks she knows, what she wants, but (as I stated above) nothing ever seems to go as planned... and I couldn't stop reading to find out how she would realign her plans. Because that's what we all do every day, isn't it? Realign our idealistic plans to meet a realistic world?

Anyway, enough philosophizing. Onto battles with dangerous faeries! :)

Lesley Livingston's Tempestuous is the third book in her Wondrous Strange Series. There is romance! Fight scenes! Otherworlds! Shakespeare! If I could describe her series in one word it would be: Brimming. It's as if the series is a 2 liter bottle of sprite (pun-intended) and Lesley has filled the bottle up with her characters/plot/setting and then shook it up. We all know what happens when she opens that bottle.... everything explodes!!! (Keep in mind: this book is also funny, so you laugh as you watch the whole concoction run over.) But the wonderful thing about this last book is that Lesley somehow manages to neatly bottle it all back. How does she do that?!

And now, at last, we are on to The Transformation of Things by Jillian Cantor. This is Jillian's debut adult novel. What I love about this novel is that Jillian adds a touch of magic to a real life situation. When I first read it I kept thinking of the movie Sliding Doors (one of my all time favorites!) In the novel, the main character, Jennifer, begins having dreams where she is other people... she is her husband, her neighbor, her sister... and then she begins to realize that these dreams aren't just dreams. She is actually experiencing real moments in the lives of her loved ones. Can you imagine?! How much would I love to know what my mother-in-law was thinking the last time I saw her... okay, maybe that's a bad idea. But Transformation of Things is one of those novels that really keeps you thinking.

I hope you've enjoyed this blog post. If any of this has peaked your interest, please do go out and buy the book-- and let me know what you think of it!



  1. Yay for this blog Jessica! Can't wait to see what other great stuff you have to share!! :)
    P.S. I read almost every title on this list -- and loved it! They didn't have "Sweetness of Salt" at my library, so guess what this means? Barnes and Noble! I happen to have planned another trip with my kids there for tomorrow :)

  2. Great idea for your blog. Love that you say what you loved about the books too, not just a review on what they are about. Thanks!

  3. Thanks for reading, Steena!

    Katia, you'll love SWEETNESS OF SALT. Don't forget to have tissues with you when you're reading... :)

  4. Fabulous idea, Jess! It's always so wonderful to hear an agent describe the sparkle in a book that first caught their eye and why they fell in love. Happy birthday to these great titles, and happy blog birthday to you!

  5. This is a great way to introduce readers to other authors. If I've read books by one of the authors you represent, and you believe in another author enough to push to get his/her book published, I'm likely to read that author's book as well. Thank you for expanding my literary universe. :)

  6. LOVE this idea! Congrats for starting the blog & sharing some great new book ideas for us all! Can't wait to see what's next!