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Paper Valentine Hardcover – January 8, 2013
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Yovanoff (The Replacement, 2010, and The Space Between, 2011) returns with another tale barbed around the edges by the profane and the grotesque. It’s been six months since Hannah’s best friend, Lillian, died from an eating disorder, a fact Hannah can’t forget because Lillian is haunting her, rather languorously, sighing over Hannah’s clothing choices and criticizing her taste in boys. This edgy supernatural relationship intensifies with the arrival of the Valentine Killer, a child murderer who dresses up his or her victims with toys and paper valentines. Lillian is able to conjure the voice of one of the deceased, who supplies the girls with a clue, and soon the unlikely investigative duo is hunting down the criminal—who may or may not be Finny, the hunky delinquent who’s got Hannah feeling “squishy.” The killer-explains-all conclusion is pat, but everything else goes gangbusters, with Yovanoff’s patent-pending blend of weak-kneed ennui and crackling nastiness turning pages faster than ever. Thrills, romance, gore—what’s not to like? Grades 9-12. --Daniel Kraus
An NPR Best Book of 2013
A Boston Globe Best Book for Young Adults of 2013
A YALSA Best Book for Young Readers of 2014
A 2014 YALSA Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Readers
A 2014 Booklist Pick for Best Fiction for Young Readers
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I think I can enjoy any book as long as it has a good voice and it's insightful. I just absolutely love stories where the main character is always making simple but gut-wrenching honest revelations. Brenna Yovanoff is going on my must-read list of authors now because of this book. I consumed it so quickly and the story was just so well done.
As soon as you begin chapter one, Yovanoff sets the dark eerie mood by having the ghost of Hannah's best friend romp around the room and make snide comments like she is still living, for better or worse. Throughout the story, the crazy heat is bearing down on the town and you can almost feel the weight it puts on everyone - along with the murders that start happening.
Also, the love interest in Finny Boone was very intriguing to me because he was so different from the usual boy characters in YA novels today who are snarky and drop-dead gorgeous. He was such a unique character and I could see how Hannah felt drawn to him even though there were some things about him that were definitely flawed.
Although the pacing seemed a little on the slow slide, the awesome imagery and voice of Hannah pulled me through it and made PAPER VALENTINE my favorite read of the year so far.
Please visit my blog for excerpts from this book! [...]
As I have a younger sister like the main character, I love the way the relationship betwen the older and younger sister is played out.
This is a work, you really need to experience for yourself.