As promised, I’m announcing my finalist today.
Typically picking a finalist is kind of a weird thing. Art is subjective, and it very much depends on who is interpreting the work and how their personal perspective is bent that day/minute/era/whatever. I basically base my finalist decision off of one question: Which book can’t I stop thinking about?
Whichever book is the answer to that question moves on to the next round.
Now, this particular book kind of caught me off guard. It’s really not my thing, for basically a whole host of reasons. I don’t read this genre of book, furthermore, I usually don’t like this sort of book. I kind of make a concentrated effort to stay away from them (Sorry, but it’s true. More details below.)
I’m saying that so maybe you’ll understand, with those facts laid out point-blank, how much this book had to grip me for it to stay with me the way it has.
I could say more, but instead, I’ll just announce my finalist.
Congratulations to Angie Grigaliunas.
As I said above, I typically don’t read young adult, and I have almost no interest in dystopian settings, but despite both of those points, this book really got me going. I loved the more mature themes. I enjoyed the writing, but really it was the detailed worldbuilding that sealed the deal here. I’m a sucker for details, and Grigalinuas (I swear I will absolutely never spell that name correctly the first time I type it out) managed to weave them in subtly, but with maximum impact. The mixture of good writing, good editing, good worldbuilding, and characters that I might not have always liked but ended up growing on me over time, made this one a slam-dunk.
Sowing was basically everything I didn’t know I really love about young adult speculative fiction.
Sowing reminded me why it’s a bad, stupid idea to ignore an entire age group of novels, or a subgenre.
Congratulations, Angie Grigaliunas! Good luck in the final round!