What's Going On Here?

There are SO MANY wonderful book review blogs out there and I can't compete with them, that is for sure. So this is not a book review blog. This is just a way for me to organize what I have read so that I can be better at matching the right book to the right person. The blog title comes from the brilliant mind of the most talented woman who ever lived, Ms. Judy Garland. The full quote is, "Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of someone else." That is what I hope to do here and in ever aspect of my life.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


I think this is one of the best songs about secrets.  No, it is probably the BEST song about secrets.  This year I read a lot of books about secrets.  Most mysteries are about secrets, aren't they? And I did read a lot of those.  This wasn't a mystery though.  Anyway....
The Secret Year is a story coming-of-age, young love, class war story about Colton, a guy from the "flats"and his secret affair with Julia, who lives where the rich kids live up on the mountain.
Julia is killed in a car accident and Colt is left to mourn alone, because no one knew about their complicated relationship.  Soon after Julia's death, Julia's brother, Michael, gives Colt a notebook in which Julia had written letters to Colt while they were dating.
Colt's voice is so real and so is the voice-from-the-past of Julia, as presented in her purple notebook.
The side story of Colt's brother Tom is quite good as well.  Also, Colt's parents are completely real.  Neither demons nor angels, as parents in YA books are often made out to be.  They are simply, human.
This is the first book from Jennifer R. Hubbard and what a terrific one it is.  I had the pleasure of hearing Ms. Hubbard speak at the 2010 PaLA Conference in Lancaster, PA and was smart enough to buy a copy of this book.  She even signed it, which was very cool.  Of course, in my messy car, I lost it and just found it this week!  Now I can give it to the library so that I can feverishly recommend it to others!   I do recommend it whole-heartedly and look forward to the next offering from Ms. Hubbard!

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