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Saturday 29 January 2011

Luisa Plaja Guest Post: Funny British Teen Books

As many of you are aware I am from the UK and this year I really want to focus on reading books by UK authors and supporting local authors. Luisa Plaja a UK author and she is an absolute sweetheart!. She has a great blog Chicklish and a great website. She has written 3 teen novels and has a new book coming out this year called Kiss, Date, Love, Hate.

Hello, and thank you to Alice for inviting me to The Reader Room!

As I'm both an author and a book-blogger from the UK, I was doubly excited when The Bookette launched the British Book Challenge for 2011. In case you don't already know, bloggers can sign up to read 6+ British books (international participants) or 12+ British books (British participants), with prizes and incentives along the way. (Full details are at The Bookette: http://www.thebookette.co.uk/2010/12/british-books-challenge-2011.html )

For my guest post here, I decided I'd like to highlight some great British authors whose books would be eligible for The Bookette's challenge. Of course, I then spent about two weeks trying to narrow down an extremely long list of my favourites. It was nearly impossible!

One thing was immediately obvious, though: the authors on my list had all written books featuring quirky characters, witty dialogue and/or word-play. They all contained humour, however dark or light the overall tone of the book. It's probably no coincidence that Buffy the Vampire Slayer is one of my all-time favourite TV programmes. (Giles: 'It's the end of the world!' Buffy, Willow, Xander: 'Again?') And, seeing as British people have a bit of a reputation for their sometimes off-the-wall sense of humour, I've decided to focus on authors who've made me laugh as I read - and then made me stand back an
d admire their clever manipulation of language.

I really could go on forever, but here is a shortlist of just a few recommendations.

Susie Day - Reading a Susie Day book without laughing is the bookish equivalent of eating a sugared doughnut without licking your lips. Try: Big 
Woo! (titled Serafina67 in the US) and Girl Meets Cake (titled My Invisible Boyfriend in the US).

Keris Stainton - Keris Stainton has me giggling and glued to the page with her realistic and fun characters and scenes. Try: Della Says: OMG!

Emily Gale - Emily Gale's novel Girl, Aloud is a realistic family drama that's as darkly funny as it is moving, and very highly recommended. I can't wait to read more from this wonderful author.

Hayley Long - Hayley Long writes and illustrates the story of Lottie Biggs, a Welsh teenager with a quirky, smile-inducing take on life, love and her own mental health.
Liz Rettig - Liz Rettig's Glasgow-based Kelly Ann diaries are warm-hearted and very funny. I think the books work in any order but this is the chronological order: My Dating Disasters Diary, My Desperate Love Diary, My Now or Never Diary, My Rocky Romance Diary.

book cover of 

My Year in Agony 

 (Miss Understanding, book 1)


Lara FoxLara Fox - This is a pseudonym and you might find these books shelved under 'Miss Understanding', the star of the novels, a girl who starts off running an online problem page for her schoolfriends and moves on to work experience in a London publishing house, entertaining readers with her dry wit every step of the way. Try: Miss Understanding: My Year in Agony

I can also recommend anything by British authors Sarra Manning, Hilary Freeman, Helen Bailey and Keren David. And Dyan Sheldon, who is American but whose latest books are definitely eligible for the challenge. And there are so many others...
Happy reading!


Isn't she just the sweestest? You can check out her website to find out more about her novels or you can check out her fabulous blog where she has guest reviewers reviewing some great new titles. She even does some reviews herself!


  1. Luisa is the loveliest. She is so welcoming to new bloggers. I adore her. This is so helpful to me because I am still finding new British authors. I really need to make a list.

  2. Isn't she just? She is so lovely! It is really helpful because I need to find more books to read for the challenge!

  3. Luisa is one of the worlds nicest people. Great post - thank you both :D

  4. She definitely is! No problem :)

  5. Luisa is lovely. I love so many of those authors! She picked some really awesome ones there.


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