Ugh, March.

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MARCH IS KILLING ME.

PLEASE RECOMMEND A FUNNY BOOK FOR ME TO READ.

MOVIE AND TV RECOMMENDATIONS ARE ALSO ACCEPTABLE.

I WANT SOMETHING SMART BUT THAT DOESN'T TAKE WORK; LIGHT BUT NOT SHALLOW.

NOT THAT I'M FEELING PICKY OR ANYTHING...

"The Judy Blume books went in my older sister's room; the Hardy Boys books went into mine."

Image via Harwell's website.

Image via Harwell's website.

Andrew Harwell's excellent (and personal) response to Shannon Hale's recent post about gender and book recommendations:

My point is that when I read a story like Shannon Hale's, it reminds me how lucky I was to find the books I needed in my life. It reminds me of how panicked I truly felt to hand something like a Hardy Boys-Nancy Drew crossover to my mom to buy, knowing that if she started reading it, she would instantly know it was a romance book, not for boys. It reminds me that I probably wouldn't have been brave enough to stick around and ask Shannon Hale for a copy of The Princess in Black, knowing that even my teachers and coaches would have been judging that decision. It reminds me of how grateful I am to the classmate who sneaked me Daughters of the Moon without judgment.

Bestsellers: February 28.

Amazon (Teen):

1. The Mermaid's Sister, by Carrie Anne Noble

2. The Ruby Circle: A Bloodlines Novel, by Richelle Mead

3. Insurgent, by Veronica Roth

4. Divergent, by Veronica Roth

5. The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green 

American Booksellers Association, National (Children's Interest):

1. Looking for Alaska (Special 10th Anniversary Edition), by John Green

2. The One and Only Ivan, by Katherine Applegate

3. I Was Here, by Gayle Forman  

4. The Terrible Two, by Jory John, Mac Barnett

5. Minecraft: Construction Handbook, by Scholastic

New York Times (YA):

1. The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green 

2. The D.U.F.F., by Kody Keplinger

3. Paper Towns, by John Green

4. Looking for Alaska, by John Green

5. If I Stay, by Gayle Forman

Publishers Weekly (Children's Frontlist):

1. The Long Haul, by Jeff Kinney

2. The Ruby Circle: A Bloodlines Novel, by Richelle Mead

3. I Totally Funniest: A Middle School Story, by James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein

4. Insurgent, by Veronica Roth

5. Red Queen, by Victoria Aveyard

USAToday (Youth):

1. The D.U.F.F., by Kody Keplinger (#32 overall)

2. The Maze Runner, by James Dashner (#34 overall)

3. The Scorch Trials, by James Dashner (#37 overall)

4. The Long Haul, by Jeff Kinney (#38 overall)

5. Insurgent, by Veronica Roth (#39 overall)

Previously:

February 21.

February 14.

February 7.

January 27.

Kindle Daily Deal: Vampire Academy, Bloodlines, AND Jackaby.

William Ritter's Jackaby is a mere $1.99 today, so if you still haven't read it, this is THE DAY:

I mentioned wanting to read William Ritter’s Jackaby in my last column, and now—ta da!—I have. It’s funny, it’s smart, it’s scary, it’s a complete joy: in other words, I’m extremely happy to report that I loved it just as much as I’d hoped I would.

And if you snag it, you'll be all ready for the sequel in September, too!

I love a good literary cheap date.

ALSO. I am, like, destitute-broke right now, BUT all of the Vampire Academy books AND all of the Bloodlines books are on sale, too. I love the Bloodlines series, so I'm thinking that there might be a little VA binge in my very-near future...

"It broke my heart that he felt he had to whisper the question."

I can't imagine that you haven't already read Shannon Hale's post about books and gender and about how gendering book recommendations fails young readers—as readers and as people—but I want to share the link here JUST IN CASE you have somehow missed it. Because it's important:

I remember one middle school 2-3 years ago that I was going to visit while on tour. I heard in advance that they planned to pull the girls out of class for my assembly but not the boys. I’d dealt with that in the past and didn’t want to be a part of perpetuating the myth that women only have things of interest to say to girls while men’s voices are universally important.  I told the publicist that this was something I wasn’t comfortable with and to please ask them to invite the boys as well as girls. I thought it was taken care of. When I got there, the administration told me with shrugs that they’d heard I didn’t want a segregated audience but that’s just how it was going to be. Should I have refused? Embarrassed the bookstore, let down the girls who had been looking forward to my visit? I did the presentation. But I felt sick to my stomach. Later I asked what other authors had visited. They’d had a male writer. For his assembly, both boys and girls had been invited.