A huge HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY to David Yoon, Akwaeke Emezi, and Nandini Bajpai, who are all going to be at the Texas Teen Book Festival on October 12th. Their books all released this week:
Frankly in Love
This book comes highly anticipated from members of the Teen Press Corps, a few of whom met David Yoon at TTBF years ago, when he was there with wife and fellow author, Nicola Yoon. You can check out this old interview with them on the TPC blog!
Bookfairs Manager Ellen got her hands on an ARC and absolutely loved it! She says, “Frank Li’s dealing with some pretty typical high school stuff – senior year, applying to college, stressing the SATs, having fun with friends, pining after a girl, etc. But beyond that, Frank is also contending with his cultural identity – is he Korean, American, or something else? Tied into that, Frank recognizes that his Korean parents are racist. This is complicated for Frank. He loves them because they are his parents, but he is ashamed that they are the way they are. This goes way beyond the trope of embarrassing parents. The book left me with plenty to think about. Have I ever done some of the things the white characters do? How would I react to my parents, friends, if I was in Frank’s shoes? Do I agree with everything Frank thinks or evaluates? The book rings true, and deeply personal. A fantastic emotional, funny, and smart read sure to spur discussion and thought.”
You can learn more about David Yoon via this Q&A with him and TTBF!
A Match Made in Mehendi
This book has all the fixin’s for a great teen contemporary rom-com, ideal for fans of When Dimple Met Rishi and The Perfect Date movie (you know, that one movie you only watched cause Noah Centineo is in it). Fifteen-year-old Simran “Simi” Sangha comes from a long line of Indian vichole– matchmakers, and when Simi accidentally sets up her cousin with a future lawyer, her whole family thinks she has “the gift”. This is the last thing Simi wants! She’s an artist, after all, and is zero interested in relationship drama. But soon Simi and her best friend Noah realize this is just the thing to elevate their social status, turning Simi’s “gift” into a matchmaking app.
Akwaeke Emezi’s work is already beloved by several of our booksellers, so we were excited to hear they were writing a YA novel! PET ended up being one of our favorite books of 2019, highly regarded by our Children’s Book Buyer (who wrote an entire blog post about it, which you can read here!) as well as our Art Director Tomoko, who says, ““This book is SO GOOD. Profound and insightful, PET naturally brings to life a diverse world that has moved itself past the era of “monsters”. The monsters are gone, and the systems that enabled them have been dismantled. So when a frightening creature springs to life from a painting and claims that one has escaped justice, no one but Jam believes. Using fantastic devices in a familiar world, Akwaeke Emezi explores the fear, denial, and action involved in exposing abuse. I love the world Emezi built–a utopic what-if setting that holds so much hope (and warning)–and I LOVE their protagonist Jam, a trans girl who prefers to speak in Sign, who finds a way to power past the fear and see the unseen.”
We’re seriously sooo ready for Oct. 12th to get here! You can visit texasteenbookfestival.org for the full author line-up, more interviews, AND keep an eye on their social channels for the schedule to be released VERY SOON.