NOTE from 2021: When I noticed my blog was getting hacked in February of 2020 I did some quick fixes and somehow all of my draft posts from the previous 16 years ended up assigned to that month. This is one of those posts. I used the context to “guess” when I actually wrote it so if anything about this publication date seems off to future me…I wanted this note here to explain possible errors.
Recently my oldest child asked me, “Have you loved #ParnassusNext? Is it something we should do for you again even this year though it wouldn’t be a surprise?” To which I replied, “I already told my husband that if you don’t I’ll be very VERY disappointed.”
Last year for Christmas my family got me the most expensive gift they’ve ever gotten me. They got me a subscription box to from one of my favorite bookstores.
Each month, you’ll receive one beautifully packaged young adult book. No filler. And not just any book: a first edition, brand-new release, signed by the author. The books are carefully selected by the YA experts at Parnassus Books, who have years of bookstore experience and great relationships with authors and publishers.ParnassusNext?
First of all, the “beautiful packaging” is NO JOKE. I always do an Instagram story showing my unboxing on the day they come in because the packaging appeals to ALL of my senses. It’s color-coordinated, like someone took the time to pick out every detail just to match the book, which I’m certain they did. There are extra details like #ParnassusNext stamps on the box so you know what’s inside. They also always come with these giant cards with details on the back of the book and the social media of the author/publisher. A few boxes have even come with extra goodies like lapel pins and postcards.
Second of all, the “YA Experts at Parnassus Books” must be simply hard-wired into my brain due to the perfection of the books they choose. I have not liked – BUT LOVED – every single book. This month’s selection was oddly specific-to-Zoot as it was about a girl who runs across country as she tries to cope with a severe trauma that touches on many hot topics today. Everyone can relate to the character as she processes her own guilt and pain and grief through the miles, but I could also relate to the stories of chaffing and blisters and even my kid was like, “That book was weirdly perfect for you, wasn’t it?”
To which I responded: THEY HAVE ALL BEEN PERFECT.
And the list has spanned the range of topics and voices in YA books. These are not all books written by white males