★ ★ ★
Going Bovine by Libba Bray | Delacorte Books | September 2009 | Paperback $10.99
All 16-year-old Cameron wants is to get through high school — and life in general — with a minimum of effort. It’s not a lot to ask. But that’s before he’s given some bad news: he’s sick and he’s going to die. Which totally sucks. Hope arrives in the winged form of Dulcie, a loopy punk angel/possible hallucination with a bad sugar habit. She tells Cam there is a cure — if he’s willing to go in search of it. With the help of a death-obsessed, video-gaming dwarf and a yard gnome, Cam sets off on the mother of all road trips through a twisted America into the heart of what matters most.
Read this one on a long, cramped airplane trip. I bring that up because the odd reading circumstances may have colored my opinions.
Libba Bray (an awesome Texas author with a real connection with her fans) give us unique story over all, even if the road-trip-as-coming-of-age-story thing gets to be a little cliché sometimes… but there’s just enough weirdness to make it different and keep up the head scratching.
The ending drags out a little, and it is not a surprise BUT it still manages to tug lightly at the reader’s heartstrings. Think of this book as a cross between Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Catcher in the Rye. Definitely recommended for readers who like ’em a little weird!
You see that big shiny medal with the “P” on the front cover? That means this book won the prestigious Printz Award in 2010. Fans of Libba Bray, author of the popular Gemma Doyle series and contributor to some awesome story collections like Zombies vs. Unicorns and 21 Proms, will be pleased to know that she is currently working on Lair of Dreams (a sequel to The Diviners, which was nominated for both the Bram Stoker and Andre Norton awards last year).
- Official website of author Libba Bray
- Printz Award from the ALA
- Horror Writers Association, which manages the Bram Stoker award
- Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America, the group that does the Andre Norton award
Publication information: Bray, Libba. Going Bovine. New York: Delacorte, 2009. Print.
Source: Public library
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