It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a meme started by Book Journey. The folks over at Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers have given it a children’s/YA spin. I thought it would be a fun way to recap last week’s reading and give a sneak peek of my TBR pile.
Last Week’s Book:
I am continuing my recent trend of one book a week, it seems. Although now that I have been settling in at home again, I’m feeling a little bit of a surge might be in the works. Time will tell.
Trollhunters by Guillermo del Toro and Daniel Kraus was published on July 7th. I had been looking forward to it for a while since it’s a team-up of two of my favorite horror writers. In fact, I did get approved to read the DRC, even though my slump meant technically I finished it a few days after publication. I have to admit that I felt I wasn’t enjoying the book that much by the time I was a third of the way through. Where was Kraus’ psychological horror that left me sitting in the car mortified and trying to compose myself before work (#horroraudiobookproblems)? And what about the brutal evil and gore del Toro delivered in The Strain series? And then it hit me–I went in expecting an older YA or adult book that would combine all the deliciously disturbing things I love and make me sleep with the lights on. What I was reading was a middle grade / lower YA series starter published by Disney-Hyperion. Once I accepted this fact and started getting into the book I was actually reading, I had a much greater appreciation for it. And so, here is the review of THAT book.
Trollhunters by Guillermo del Toro and Daniel Kraus is the first book in a new series for junior high and early high school students. The book is part adventure, part horror and a fresh offering that I’ll be eager to share with my students. Jim Sturges is an ordinary high school student, sort-of. He’s not popular by any means, but has a best friend Tobias “Tub”, and a massive crush on tough-girl Claire. His home life is far from ordinary, though, as his Dad is overprotective, paranoid, and worries constantly for Jim’s safety. Of course, he has a good reason–when he was a kid in the 1960s almost 200 children mysteriously disappeared from town, including his beloved brother Jack. And guess what–kids have started disappearing again. One night Jim finds out why–trolls. He is recruited by his stuck-at-age-13 Uncle Jack and two good trolls, Blinky and ARGHHH!!! to help stop the banished, evil trolls from returning to capture and eat more kids. Del Toro and Kraus create a believable rich history and lore which explains the wide variety of trolls and their culture, which almost rivals the world-building found in The Strain. The trolls and their habitat are really (I mean REALLY) gross, so there are parts which make the skin crawl and a fair amount of violence, too–so much so that my booktalks will include a bit of a disclaimer. Jim and Tub are by no means experienced adventurers or fighters at the beginning of the book and gradually grow into their effectiveness and bravery. Claire is fierce and cool, and readers can tell she will definitely figure more prominently in future books. I can already think of several students to hand this book to when school starts up again. I’d better buy multiple copies…. This book counts for my Horror Reading Challenge 2015.
I got it at the library today.