Where Ladybugs Roar

Confessions and Passions of a Compulsive Writer

Thursday, April 8, 2010

The Sticky Wicket of Picky

So, there are a few books I'd like to get but I'm also sick of getting YA books that I can't pass on to my teenage beta reader. Can someone give me the lowdown on the following books in these three categories:

1. I can't pass on books that have serious swearing in them (The F word even once, and the more serious swears frequently.)

2. Sex... graphic in any way, but I'd rather not have any at all.

3. Underage drinking or any drug use promoted or accepted.

Okay, like I said, I want to pass these books on to my fourteen year old beta reader (who reads voraciously) but out of respect for her mother's rules... and admittedly these are my preferences anyway... I just want to know if I should buy these books. Some of them, I know are safe, but I'm curious about opinions anyway. So, yeah, read these?

1. I Kissed a Zombie and I Liked it

2. Fallen

3. The Forest Of Hands and Teeth

4. The Dark Divine

5. Hex Hall

6. Leviathan

7. Beautiful Creatures

8. The Body Finder

9. Graceling

10. Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side

I've been wanting a few of these for a while now. Leviathan's book trailer was wicked awesome. So.... anyone?


  1. I've only read the Dark Divine and Graceling. I think the Dark Divine is fine for her to read. Graceling is violent and the main character chooses to never get married, but she does enter a sexual relationship - there isn't details though.
    I haven't read Leviathan, but I think it's okay. My 16yo beta read it and she and her parents are very particular. Also the Uglies series by the same other did not have swearing or sex in them at all. Has she read the Uglies - she'd probably like them.

  2. I meant the Uglies series by the same Author - but you probably knew that. I recommend anything by Janette Rallison - they are all clean and fun books.

  3. I read Fallen... but I dont remember if there were any curse words in there =\ There was no sex at all-- though lots of kissing scenes, but nothing too detailed. There was also a single drinking scene but from what I remember it wasn't long. I think they just had champagne.

    Sorry I can't help out much!

  4. From my remembering... Leviathan had none of the above. Neither did The Forest of Hands and Teeth.

  5. Leviathan is the only one I've read. It is awesome, but Scott Westerfeld is one of my idols. No language or sex and by the end I was smacking myself for reading it before the other two books in the series were out. It was my first steam punk book and I liked it.

  6. This is off subject a little bit, but maybe not. Have you heard of the book Marcelo's in the Real World? It's written is first person POV and the main character is a 17 year old who has Autism or Aspergers, but is high functioning. The cover is gorgeous and a lot of people say that it's a really beautiful novel.

  7. Happy to chime in on Zombie:
    1. No f bombs, couple of minor swears (though it depends on what you count as a swear)
    2. There are references to sex, but nothing graphic or particularly explicit.
    3. Underage drinking is encountered and regarded as fairly normal, but the drunks are invariably referred to in a negative manner and the main characters don't participate (other than getting a drunk friend outside to puke).

    I'd say it would be all right, but your mileage may vary.

  8. LOL. Adam, yours was one of the ones I wasn't all that worried about, but it's good to get the inside track. Well, I'll also admit that the amount of F bombs in YA books have surprised me lately. I've been planning on buying yours regardless. ;) It was in the bag.

  9. Hey! The Forest of Hands and Teeth - excellent read, no sex, no swear words and definitely no drinking. Good book too.

    Fallen - no sex, one drinking scene and I think no swear words but I can't be sure but I did not like this book, the action scenes were all over the place.

    The Wake Series by Lisa McMann has all the above in there and then some. I thought they were good books but steer clear of them for sure, if you're looking to avoid those things.

  10. I've read Beautiful Creatures and don't remember there being any of that stuff...maybe a few curse words, but I don't care for them much myself, and nothing stood out, so I'd say...you're probably good. And I really enjoyed the book! Looking forward to #2 in October (I think).