December 07, 2009

Wicked Cool Overlooked Books: The Jennifer Adventures

It's the first Monday of the month, and while you're still trying to figure out what happened to November, it's already time for Wicked Cool Overlooked Books!

You're completely over zombies and vampires and the whole werewolf thing, aren't you?
Oh. Well, while you're biting your nails and waiting for the people on your library holds list to READ FASTER ALREADY, check out what I found - a new old books!

Fourteen-year-old Jennifer Scales really resents her mother. She kind of resents her father, too, but he's gone much of the time, on business, and when he's home, he geeks out and lectures her on all kinds of detailed things. She tunes him out, just like she tunes out her Mom. The only thing that really matters to her is soccer, and after executing a mid-air flip and kicking the ball into the goal -- which caused the whole game to stop and everyone to stare at her -- Jennifer's not really sure she's got soccer anymore.

At least her Dad comes home after that.

Her parents try and insist that she stay home for awhile, just to be "safe." But they won't tell her anything really, except that she needs to stay close, and that they'll explain "later."

Right. First they ignore her, then they lock her in her room? Jennifer's not having that, obviously. It's only after she's coughing up blood while her teeth shift around in her mouth and burping out gusts of fire on the sidewalk a block from her house that she realizes she maybe should have tried a little harder to get an explanation.

When she morphs into a half-ton weredragon, complete with wings, fangs, and breath-of-fire, it's a bit late for explanations. Now she knows what she is, knows she's going to need a lot of training to discover and control new skills, and oh - last detail. This morphing thing will happen at the crescent moon -- twice a month, every month, forever. Welcome to the rest of your non-human life.

To say that she's pissed is a major understatement. But, things get better. And then, a lot worse.

Written by fairly well-known author, Mary Janice Davidson, and her husband, Anthony Alongi, the Jennifer Scales series began in 2005 - which means you have a few to read before you're caught up. Jennifer Scales and the Ancient Furnace is the first, followed by Jennifer Scales and the Messenger of Light, Jennifer Scales and the Silver Moon Elm, and the final book in the series thus far is pending: Jennifer Scales and the Seraph of Sorrow which came out in January. Read excerpts here.

Davidson's books generally are quirky romance novels about vampires or mermaids, which have put her on the bestseller list more than once, but I had zero idea she wrote specifically for young adults. I've only read the first book so far, but it really kept my interest -- I mean, seriously, weredragons?! -- and there are Unexpected Twists that kept me guessing right up until Jennifer figured things out. This series is the perfect thing to read while you wait for what new half-human thing is going to come howling out of the woods next door.

Buy Jennifer Scales and the Ancient Furnace and all the other Jennifer Adventures from an independent bookstore near you!


Jennifer said...

I read a couple of these! Be prepared for more were-thingies, including large poisonous were-spiders, who are also possibly boyfriends! Puts a whole different perspective on the "my boyfriend might kill me" vampiric thing, huh?

For another were-dragon book, see if you can find Vivan Vande Velde's Dragon Bait, although it's really about revenge, not romance.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

These look awesome. Thanks so much for the reviews - I'll be adding them to my reading list! :)

Erin said...

I want to read this!! thanks for pointing them out!

Belle said...

This looks like such a great series! I'm adding it to my list. I love "new old" books - there's more of a chance my library will have the titles!

Sarah Stevenson said...

I hadn't heard of these, but weredragons sound like a fun premise!

Anonymous said...

I work with a Jennifer Scales. I think I'm going to have to show her that book.