Bookworm’s Nest: Natalie Venning’s Top Five Favorite YA

Natalie Venning and bunnyEevee. Courtesy of NatalieVenning.

Natalie Venning and bunny
Eevee. Courtesy of Natalie

Not all bloggers start out as pure book bloggers. Some bloggers start out blogging what they love – which is certainly the case for Natalie Venning, who began blogging about all aspects of her life. But take a look at her blog now, and you’ll see that most of it belongs solely to YA books.

It’s no surprise. While Venning is passionate about a lot of things, books are her heart. She recently launched an initiative called Book It Forward, which focuses on generating buzz for local libraries, encouraging readers to review books online, thanking authors for their work, and – occasionally – a book giveaway.

You can follow her on Twitter or Instagram. Oh, and she once flew a plane for ten minutes with no training, which is undoubtedly the most interesting fun fact you’ll learn about a blogger today.

Any reader when faced with limiting their book choices will descend into a panic. Fresh memories will snatch at your thoughts, and just as you reach the end of the line you remember countless more from your youth which had a profound impact on your life. Therefore my five have been chosen on five different reasons rather than just my favourite 5. (There is no answer to that!)

#5: The Novice by Taran Matharu

“Fight dirty, and go for the face. Gentlemen’s rules are for gentlemen.”

This is the book I am most excited to read. I have already consumed the free 100 page origins story. Matharu’s ability to dissect issues that young people face, like bullying, family life, domestic abuse, and the need to own an adorable animal that could kill people you don’t like, is so perfectly written into his world of Hominum. I really think this will be a book that resonates with multiple personalities.


#4: The Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury

the sin eater's daughter melinda salisbury“I am the perfect weapon, I can kill with a single touch.”

This is the book I have been most impressed with recently. The ending! I hung on to each word of this tale, but I cannot explain how much the last 40 pages of this book just got to me. I still think about it. To be able to entertain all throughout the book, but then leave the reader speechless is a great skill. I can’t wait for Salisbury’s sequel.


#3: Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

“I like the night. Without the dark, we’d never see the stars.”

This book is one I will never forget. I first saw the Twilight book when I was 13 years old, lying on top of a pile of books in a dusty bookstore. I couldn’t afford it then, but in 2006 I found it again on Amazon and fell in love at first word. The haters can hate, because I became obsessed with this series way before the big screen version. Glittery diamonds aside, I feel it is a great example of romance with a fun twist. Plus it was the first book that made my workaholic mother actually take a dinner break because she had to read another chapter! So I will always be thankful to Meyer for being the first one to make mum take a break. (The next was The Hunger Games!)

#2: Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

ready player one ernest cline“You’d be amazed how much research you can get done when you have no life whatsoever.”

This book wins my curiosity! As a public relations professional, social media manager and general internet hugger, Cline’s futuristic tale is where we all practically live in an online virtual reality, and only come out of it to work the jobs that support the infrastructure to continue that existence. Heck, half the jobs and even the schools are in the VR! There is also adventure, tragedy and a whole heap of 80s trivia. There were some spots that didn’t keep me enthralled, but the overall story is one I will always recommend to people because at the rate our culture is going, we could be living that way eventually.

#1: Watership Down by Richard Adams

watership down richard adams“We all have to meet our match sometime or other.”

This book is my treasure. It gets the exception of always being chosen in a favourite list. To me, Watership Down is my YA Classic. It narrowly beats Alice in Wonderland. Why? Not just because bunnies. My favourite quote by Adam on his own work is “I wanted this to be a fairy tale for adults, or a grown up book for children”. He succeeds. He creates an entire world within our own, giving the rabbits a strong religion, cults, ambitions, authority. It is scary and tragic, yet I have nothing but good memories of reading this as a child.


Do you share any favorites with Natalie? Sound off in the comments below!

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