So, in the spirit of mashups + the best of '11 blog circus, here are my top picks for YA gents & ladies!
Top Five YA dudes:
1) Don't kill me but I *just* read The Perks of Being a Wallflower this year (I know, I know: bad YA writer. Bad!) and I adore Charlie. He is vulnerability and innocence and courage and honesty and wisdom all wrapped up in a phenomenal (albeit heartbreaking) literary package.
|Actual still from upcoming film.|
2) Adam Wilde aka Wilde Man aka my fictional boyfriend. Gayle Foreman's Where She Went. Because holy heck, he's like my top five of all time, not just 2011. I liked him in If I Stay, I LOVED him in WSW. In fact, I *whispers* love WSW more than If I Stay and I think it's because I loved Adam's narrative voice.
3) Etienne St. Clair of Anna fame. Which, I realize was a 2010 release BUT he reappeared in Lola and the Boy Next Door. HA!
Can't try to cast him because... nope. won't work. ;)
4) Speaking of Lola and her boy next door, who didn't swoon over Cricket? *swoon* What can I say, Stephanie Perkins knows how to write a love interest.
5) Todd of the Chaos Walking series. Something about Todd (and his noise!) is so genuine and real. Although, to be honest, the Mayor is pretty intriguing in his own right (albeit in a heinously evil (or is he?) sort of way).
|This guy might be a little.... ehrm, beefy? for Todd. But I doubt any of you will complain. ;)|
5.5) I'm adding one more because I just must. Warner from Shatter Me. Yes, I know he's the bad guy but there is something about him that is so compelling. If "best villains" were one of our topics, he'd be at the top of my list!
Top Five YA Ladies:
1) Vera Dietz who should definitely NOT be ignored. I know her book was technically a 2010 release, but I didn't read it until the beginning of this year. And it got the 2011 Printz nom.... so there.
2) Jill MacSweeny/ Mandy Kalinowski from How to Save a Life. So it feels *wrong* not to list both of them since they are given equal weight and have equally compelling (though totally different) narratives. They each have very real flaws but also very real heart.
3) Ellie, the 8 year-old "sidekick" (for lack of a better term) in Ashes. Because she is so insanely real and authentic and even though you kind of want to drop-kick her, you also can't help but feel her fear/pain/insert-intense-emotion-here.
4) Tris of Divergent. Because she's a bad ass. 'Nuff said.
5) Rhine of Wither. I think the reason I liked Rhine so much was because of her voice-- turns of phrase, ways of seeing the world, hope in spite of so much despair. The girl's got gumption.
Hop on over and check out what these other YA badasses have to say: