Monday, February 1, 2010

The Unsung YA Hero Giveaway: Year of the Horse

Last week, Kelly of YAnnabe got a whole crowd of bloggers to Sing the Praises of the Unsung and blog about their favorite YA books no one has read. At the top of my list (in both obscurity and enjoyment) was The Year of the Horse by Justin Allen.


Here's what Publisher's Weekly had to say about this book:
Allen ... plots a supernatural wild west adventure in his sophomore outing that should hold appeal for younger readers. Chinese-American teenager Tzu-lu finds his life upended when his grandparents send him on an expedition west with famous gunslinger Jack Straw and his rag-tag crew of mercenaries. Exploring anew the tropes of the cowboy western—Indians, polygamous cultists, Ghost Riders and the perils of the open desert—Allen follows the gang to Silver City, the very edge of settled America, to reclaim a treasure stolen by a mysterious man known as the Yankee, and perhaps illuminate the fate of Tzu-lu's dead father. With a few playful nods to Washington Irving, Allen mixes western and fantasy into a high adventure coming-of-age, keeping his world's more outrĂ© elements grounded with a surfeit of dead-on historical details.
Even though I never read Westerns, I really liked this book. It wasn't perfect, but it was fun. I was pleasantly surprised when I read Year of the Horse that a book so far out of my comfort zone could be so enjoyable.

Since then, I've reviewed Year of the Horse and had a really, really long interview with author Justin Allen. I've lent this book out to friends and family, all of whom have enjoyed it. Sadly, though, this hasn't seemed to have made much of an impact out in the larger world. But this is one of those book I'm not just going to put up on a shelf and forget about. I want some of you to read it and find out for yourselves how much fun it is. So, thanks to Justin's generosity, I'm giving away two autographed copies of The Year of the Horse!

The contest is open worldwide. To enter, leave a comment on this post telling me your favorite book you'd never thought you'd like. You can earn an additional entry by blogging or tweeting this contest. Please let me know you have done so, by leaving a link, in a separate comment. The contest will close Friday, February 12 Monday, February 15 at 4 pm, Pacific Time. I'll announce the winners the following week. Please email me with any questions and good luck!

16 comments:

  1. I never thought I would like Topless Prophet by Alan Markovitz, but lo and behold I love it!

    freda.mans[at]sympatico.ca

    ReplyDelete
  2. tweet; https://twitter.com/fredalicious/status/8510249559

    freda.mans[at]sympatico.ca

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi! Just posted about this contest on Win A Book. No need to enter me.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I never though I'd like Getting the Girl by Susan Juby, but I loved it.

    nicolama at cogeco dot ca

    Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have never thought that i would love The Hunger Games ! When i read the first page, it took me almost 3 days to finish. then when i tried to read every page on the book. I was Hooked :)

    uniquas at ymail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  6. i tweet'd here http://twitter.com/becunique

    uniquas at ymail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  7. I've never thought I could love Dan Brown's novels.

    Please count me in. Thanks.

    avalonne83 [at] yahoo [dot] it

    ReplyDelete
  8. I never thought I would like "The Blade Itself" by Joe Abercrombie.

    spav05(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  9. Tweet: http://twitter.com/Sparima/status/8607515977

    spav05(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  10. I never really thought I'd like David Copperfield, but turns out I did! Thanks for dropping by btw, plan to check out more of your blog ;)

    ReplyDelete
  11. I never thought I'd like Pride and Prejudice, but I quickly fell in love with the book.

    Please enter me in this giveaway!

    saemmerson at yahoo dot com

    Sarah E

    ReplyDelete
  12. I tweeted:

    http://twitter.com/saemmerson/status/8844334002

    saemmerson at yahoo dot com

    Sarah E

    ReplyDelete
  13. I never thought I'd like Usurper of the Sun by Housuke Nojiri because I'm not a fan of sci-fi, but I loved it!

    http://twitter.com/wingstodust/status/8980539542

    l y i n g _ i n n o c e n c e [AT] y a h o o [DOT] c a

    ReplyDelete
  14. i really thought i would hate 1984 by George Orwell, but I actually quite enjoyed it, even the ending! it's proabably one of my favourite english-class required readings even now

    ninefly(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  15. tweeted!
    http://twitter.com/angeltyuan/status/8984673731

    ninefly(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hey All,

    Thanks for comign by Lorin's Archthinking blog - especially you new-comers. I was so surprised by some of the books you chose. Many of them were books I read entirely by choice, and with great excitement. One book I was not excited to read, however was "Bastard Out of Carolina," by Dorothy Allison. But let me tell you, it is GREAT. Wonderful for fans of YA literature, literary fiction, and Southern fiction all at the same time. A really marvelous novel. If you are interested in writing, you could not do better than to read it. Again, thanks everyone who stopped in and let us know what you have been reading.

    Justin Allen

    ReplyDelete