Let me introduce myself, my name is Devra Robitaille and I write books for children and young adults. Now, when ‘This is Writing’ asked me to do an article recommending five of my favorite books I nearly blew a gasket trying to figure out which books to spotlight!
You see, I am such an avid reader, and I read so many different genres, I just couldn’t decide.
I love research, and I’ve read lots of books about ancient archaeology, and Irish megalithic stone formations and crop circles.
I love to travel and I’ve read loads of books about exotic places. I love murder mysteries and getting stuck into a great detective novel with a big cup of tea and (I will admit) a chocolate bar as big as your head on a rainy afternoon is my idea of fun; and I love courtroom dramas and mystical quests, fantasy and space odyssey; Clancy and Ludlum, Grisham and Follett…and Elizabeth George!
Like I said, blowing a gasket!!
Finally, after ruminating on this for several days and getting absolutely nowhere, I made a decision. I’m going to stick to the genre I write, and recommend some of my favorite children’s and young adult’s authors, and/or series. Now by recommending these books I am letting you in on a secret. Yes, I still read books for youngsters! Not that I sneak into the library in disguise, and tiptoe among the shelves hoping to be invisible, mumbling something to the children that give me funny looks about “picking out books for my friends’ kids” or anything; but the following choices are some of my very favorites and I know you will like them too.
1. The Faerie Wars by Herbie Brennan
I have read a lot of Herbie Brennan’s books, he is such a deft weaver of tales and inventor of worlds. He also writes non-fiction books about metaphysics and he really knows his stuff, so the stories seem very authentic. The Faerie Wars is about a prince of the realm, Pyrgus Malvae who goes through a portal into the analogue world (our world) and meets a young boy named Henry and a loveable crotchety old man, Mr. Fogerty. I won’t spoil the story for you, but Henry and Mr. F. find themselves going back through the portal with Pyrgus to the faerie realm and fighting on the side of the Faeries of the Light to save them all.
2. City of the Beasts by Isabel Allende
Nicely written and a heck of a good adventure. I especially loved it when Alex, the main character, becomes a jaguar. The shamanic tone of this book is beautiful and magical and I enjoyed reading it.
3. The Alchemist, The Magician and The Sorceress by Michael Scott
The first three books in “The secrets of the immortal Nicholas Flamel” series.
As a kid I loved reading mythology. I gobbled up everything I could get my hands on. Michael Scott weaves so many classically mythological characters into this series, it’s almost a glut, like eating too many chocolate chip cookies, but I never felt queasy. The stories are well told, he keeps bouncing back and forth, but you are on the edge of your seat. A really good read.
4. The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman
What I love about this book is that Pullman creates a whole beautiful, weird but believable world for Lyra to inhabit. And while we are reading the book he artfully immerses us in that world. It is ingenious.
5. The Theodore Boone Series by John Grisham
I am such a fan of John Grisham, it makes me sad to realize I’ve read them all. So when my daughter told me he had written a series for youngsters, I was hooked. Not every author can write across different age ranges, but Grisham is a master. The antics of Theodore are charming and interesting and the books are delightful. JG doesn’t talk down just because he’s writing for youngsters and I admire that.
So there we are, a few of my faves. Hope you like them too. And be Sure to check out my books here