UGH. This week has not been my best. I have been doing so much travelling, not sleeping and eating rubbish that I am basically a perpetually exhausted lukewarm corpse at this point (on the plus side, my Halloween look is sorted!). Reading hasn’t been happening much this week. I am slowly (very slowly) savouring The Book of Dust and aside from that have read two books this week:
Waiting for Callback by Honor and Perdita Cargill
I had not heard of this book until it became this week’s read for the #nspbookclub. Shout out to the utterly lovely Zoe for the introduction!
Elektra Ophelia is desperate to be an actress. When she finds herself an agent, it looks as though all her dreams are coming true, but we’re about to find out that acting isn’t all that glamourous! Elektra tells her story in a really amusing way with sarcastic side-notes and much emotion. We have no doubt how she is feeling at any point.
We learn a lot about being a child actor: going to auditions, waiting around, waiting for calls and being offered less glamorous jobs. I liked that we also learned a lot about the impact of Elektra’s budding career on her parents (as a parent myself I am always fascinated with the representation of adults in YA – I’m hoping I can use the best ones as a blueprint for when my own small one is a young adult!) I found Elektra’s dad particularly fascinating. I also loved Daisy who, though a minor character, gave us a stark contrast and alternative view of acting to Elektra’s. Moss (Elektra’s best friend) and Archie (the guy Elektra has a crush on) are also a big part of her story and give us some tension as their relationships change and grow.
Waiting for Callback is not the sort of book I would usually pick up but I did enjoy it and I think it would be perfect for fans of Louise Rennison or Beth Garrod.
Night Shift by Debi Gliori
I’ve loved Debi Gliori’s work since I first read Goodnight Baby Bat to my baby cousin eight years ago. It was the first book I bought for my own baby and one we still occasionally enjoy six years later.
Night Shift is a book about depression and is based on the author’s own experiences. I love books that tackle these subjects in a way that is accessible to younger readers, although I think this is one that will also resonate with many older readers. It certainly did for me.
Debi’s illustrations are beautiful and really enhance the text which talks about the feelings associated with depression whilst also showing us that sometimes depression is too big for words. I adore the way Debi has personified depression as a dragon breathing fog who gets bigger as the main character’s depression grows.
Night Shift is a really wonderful little book and one I would recommend, particularly to those who suffer with mental illness.
How has your week been? What have you been reading?