#LoveOzYA Anthology Review: Begin, End, Begin | Part 1
If you don’t know what Begin, End, Begin: A #LoveOzYA Anthology is, then where have you been? Begin, End, Begin is an anthology highlighting the talent we have in Australia for young adults.
This anthology features authors Amie Kaufman, Melissa Keil, Lili Wilkinson, Ellie Marney, Jaclyn Moriarty, Michael Pryor, Alice Pung, Gabrielle Tozer, Will Kostakis and Danielle Binks.
As I wanted to review this anthology, I thought I would do my reviews in parts. A couple of reviews each post and then an overall review of the anthology. Today is part 1.
One Small Step … by Amie Kaufman
One Small Step … :
I’ve read three books by Amie Kaufman now and I just seem to enjoy everyone. I am not a massive science fiction fan. I read it every once and a while and most of the time I don’t love the books. But I adored ‘One Small Step…’ And even though it is a short story, I still every much loved the characters.
‘One Small Step …’ follows protagonist Zaida, the first person to be born on Mars. While time skips back and forth effortlessly, we see what happens to get her in a certain situation.
While there are time jumps, it isn’t hard to grasp when time skips or what is happening. Kaufman also did a fantastic job with world building in such a short amount of time. The world was easy to get to get a hold of and although it was a science fiction set in space, it’s quite unique.
I really liked the relationships explored throughout ‘One Small Step…’ From friendship to romantic. It was great to see both those relationship and character grow throughout.
‘One Small Step …’ explores themes of family, friendship, and love. It’s about survival, finding yourself and not letting others decide for you.
I Can See the Ending by Will Kostakis
I Can See the Ending:
‘I Can See The Ending’ was an interesting read. It follows protagonist Adam who can see the future, and when he sees the girl he likes, dumping him in the future. Well, things don’t go to plan.
While I would normally love something like this, I didn’t connect with Adam. I am not entirely sure why. I liked the concept of the novel, a lot. It was great actually. But because of the loss of connection with the characters, I wasn’t able to fully immerse myself into the story.
In saying that I still really enjoyed the story, I liked the character interaction and the inner turmoil of Adam. It was great to see a story, where someone can see the future struggle with the outcomes. To decide if things are worth the risk. If it’s okay knowing what is going to happen and what you do with that information.
Overall ‘I Can See The Ending’ was an intriguing read. It explores the notion of seeing the future, learning that everything is not what it seems, family and friends. It explores learning to live your life and not let things stand in your way. ‘I Can See The Ending’ about finding out who you are and letting life take its course.
Check out my interview with Will in my #LoveOzYA feature last year.
In a Heartbeat by Alice Pung
In a Heartbeat:
I had never read an Alice Pung book before I picked up ‘In a Heartbeat,’ and now I am intrigued. ‘In a Heartbeat’ follows seventeen-year-old Kim, who finds out she is pregnant and has to deal with the aftermath of being a pregnant teen.
I really enjoyed this story overall, I like reading stories of teens that do fall pregnant because I think that authors can really delve deep into characters and ups and downs of parenthood.
I loved that we got to see the cultural aspects of a young teen being pregnant and how it does play a part in the way that we live our lives. Kim was an easy protagonist to get along with and it was great to see the interaction between her and her own mum.
However, at times I was confused as to what she was talking about. Kim kept on shifting from mother to grandmother and it took me a while to realise it was the same person. It’s her mother, but her baby’s grandmother. This could have totally been just my fault.
Overall ‘In a Heartbeat’ is a heart-warming story of teen pregnancies and the trails that come along with it. From being a single bother to cultural beliefs. It explores the notion of family, being a teenage and motherhood. It’s one that is really important and it doesn’t take long to read.
Pick up your copy of Begin, End, Begin: A #LoveOzYA Anthology now, with publication in the US soon.
So, I am loving the anthology so far. It’s great to see so many amazing short stories, by Aussie YA authors. It puts into perspective how great #LoveOZYA really is.
Have you read the anthology yet? What did you think? What is your favourite story? Are you planning on reading it? Let’s Chat!