Saturday, May 11, 2013

Weekend Recommendations #3

This is my new (hopefully) weekly feature, where I get to go all fannish about two randomly-picked favvies (which may not actually be favorites, but got a rating of 3 smiley faces or higher) that I would recommend to friends! So, here are this week's two picks:

Title: Chains
Author: Laurie Halse Anderson
Genre: historical fiction
Part of a Series: Seeds of America #1
Rating: 5 out of 5
Who'll Like It: Girls and guys alike, fans of hardcore historical fiction. It's one of those YA reads that adults, middle graders, and teens alike will love.

Why I Liked It:

Aside from being a historical fiction fan myself, I love stories set during the American Revolution, and I love good stories dealing with slavery. That is, stories that don't demonize every single white person out there, because there most definitely were people that thought it was wrong (ever heard of abolitionists?), and stories that don't give the slave characters a victimized attitude. Give me a slave character who tries to do something about his/her situation, even if it's hopeless! Isabel is just like that. She is a strong protagonist who struggles with what side she's on during the Revolution, and who works under a cruel master, but she learns and grows through her struggles, looks after her sister Ruth like an older sister should, and takes action to do what she must to earn her freedom - and help the war. The Author offers a very balanced and very truthful view of how things were for slaves during the American Revolution, and I had nothing to complain about. It's one of the best historical fiction books I've ever read.

Title: Climbing the Stairs
Author: Padma Venkatraman
Genre: historical fiction, romance
Part of a Series: No
Rating: 5 out of 5
Who'll Like It: Girl-read, historical fiction fans looking for a book set in WWII-era India, and people who like a romantic aspect that genuinely leaves you feeling bubbly inside.

Why I Liked It:

I've always found India fascinating, and I've always found WWII fascinating. So a story set in India during WWII was a must. Especially with a girl protagonist who loves books, has aspirations to become a doctor, and must fight against the traditionalistic mindset of her relatives. Not to mention that the romantic aspect of the books was actually genuinely romantic, and not some silly teen infatuation. I loved Raman the moment he stepped into the story, and I actually went all girly over his and Vidya's growing relationship. This has to be one of my favorite books.

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