A couple of things for me personally:
- I am very attached to the idea of a local ‘superhero’ story. I don’t think Aus/NZ fiction does much of that, and I applaud Rachael Craw for going for it with this series.
- On the same theme – much local YA is rewarded for being literary, but I think there is a real hunger for more out-there genre fiction. I’d like to see more of this type of fiction take off in the Aus/NZ market, because it’s the kind of stuff I used to prefer reading as a teenager, so SPARK was a welcome addition.
- Whywhywhy hasn’t something like this been adapted for the screen? I understand that SPARK has been optioned for film, but there’s a huge chasm between a book being optioned and a book being developed and made… I know the film/tv industry is in the doldrums in this country, but here’s some great material for a teen tv series, maybe by ABC3?
- On that note, hardly any local books are made into films or brought to tv. There doesn’t seem to be a lot of will to invest capital – which I find mind-boggling, but I guess it’s cheaper and easier to make shows like The Bachelorette?? Ffs. At least they’ve made The Changeover (Margaret Mahy), but wow, it only took them, like, 30 years…
- If we had a local industry that was eager to adapt local YA material, it could become like the new Home&Away, and kick off the careers of local actors, sell into overseas markets…and I’m getting a little ahead of myself. Ahem.
If you’d like to read on after SPARK, the rest of the trilogy is STRAY and SHIELD. There’s also a prequel short story called BLACK ROOM, which looks good (I haven’t read it yet – tell me what it’s like!).
I also discovered this post by the SPARK cover designer, Amy Daoud, about the process of creating the cover image, which I found really fascinating!
I really hope you enjoyed SPARK as this month’s bookclub read! Please feel free to comment on the discussion post on the FB group page thread, or you can leave a comment here. If you’re time-poor, you can leave a 1-5 Star quickie review in either place.
Keep your ears to the ground for next month’s #LoveOzYAbookclub title – I’ll be announcing it soon!