Whether you are a fan of Christmas comedies, westerns or social novels, the start of the literary season and the outings in the fall of 2019 have been eclectic in terms of novels intended for adolescents and young adults. Here is our selection, based on recent reviews from the World, to put at the foot of the tree or to enjoy with hot chocolate during the Christmas holidays.
“The Tempest of Echoes”, end of a successful saga
Six years after publishing the first volume of its tetralogy The Mirror Pass, Christelle Dabos delivers the expected epilogue to this fantasy saga which has sold half a million copies in France. After meeting with Ophélie a clumsy young woman promised in marriage to a stranger in a foreign territory, the reader now sees an assertive heroine flourish, seasoned in her supernatural powers allowing her to read the past of an object by touching it and to travel through mirrors. Today she is determined to fight the upper castes and to free herself from an infantilizing and opaque system to lift the veil on the genesis of this world where family spirits, sort of amnesiac demi-gods, reign over arches , micro-states hanging in the air after the Tear, a very old cataclysm.
This last volume painstakingly unties all the threads woven in a vast and abundant work. If the first dense pages require solid memories of previous volumes, the most persistent will gladly find the dreamlike and refined style of the 39-year-old novelist.
“The Storm of Echoes. La Passe-Miroir, tome IV ”, by Christelle Dabos, Gallimard Jeunesse, 572 p., € 19.90. From 13 years old.
“Signed poet X”, a feather carried by the slam
Xiomara is named after a warrior. Her sword: poetry, a passion that she discreetly cultivates, on a notebook offered by her twin, and which is the backbone of Signed poet X, first free verse novel by poet Elizabeth Acevedo, winner of the 2018 National Book Awards.
We discover in the privacy of these pages the daily life of a teenager from Harlem, in New York, raised in a modest family of Dominican immigrants: free will and desires for the future, which come up against the bigotry of mother ; awakening to sensuality, restrained by the looks that men have on Xiomara's body; the difficulty of defining one's place in a twin sibling, a traditional family, or among other adolescents. In the depths of the rhythms and sounds of the language – languages, since Spanish hems every reply from the parents -, the revolt of a woman in the making cools. More than confessions, the poems of Xiomara, carried by the subtle and effective slam of its creator, allow him to make his voice heard in a society which invites him to docility.