There are several Editors (staff reviewers) here at YABooksCentral.com, and they all have their own taste in books. While one might give a certain book 5 stars, another might only give it 3. We like that kind of diversity here, because we know every reader is different. Every reader's opinion is valid.
But we also know it's helpful to read reviews by those who share your same interests, especially when you're looking for recommendations.
So which YABC Staff Reviewer has your taste in books? Find out in this new blog series, Meet Our Editors! Each week, I'll be spotlighting one of our editors. When you find one that shares your same taste in books, movies, TV, even food, then make sure to check out the books that editor enjoys.
See how it works? Great!
First up, I did a Fast Faves interview with Kim Baccellia, who has been with YABC the longest. Her dedication to YABC and her unwavering team spirit always puts a smile on my face and encourages me to keep going.
Here's a little about Kim:
I’m an educator, reviewer, YA author, and currently a Cybil’s panelist. My father once told me that writing was in my blood and there was no escaping the urge to write. I’m related to the author of Tarzan. Though I haven’t achieved my ancestor’s acclaim, yet, that is, my own novels include: No Earrings of Ixtumea, Crossed Out, and soon to be released No Goddesses Allowed.
In my spare time I like to run, practice yoga, read, and watch the latest chick flick. I’m a huge Buffy fan and have been reading the comic book series since it first came out. Also totally fell in love with Audrey Hepburn while researching her for my upcoming book! Plus, I have the philosophy that dark chocolate can brighten any day.
A current member of SCBWI and RWA, I’m currently writing the sequel to Crossed Out and working on a YA multicultural dystopian. I live in Southern California with my husband, son, and two parrots.
Which types of books are your favorites to read/review?
I love to read! My favorite genre has to be YA paranormals and fantasy. I love a good romance with an intriguing love twist. I can’t resist a good historical romance either. Also, I love to read nonfiction pieces on fascinating people and places I’d love to visit. Right now it’s Paris, France.
Which types of books do you hate to read?
I admit I’m not too keen on omnipresent POV in a story. There are not many types of books I don’t like. If the book is engaging with a character I love, then I’ll read it. A confession though: I shy away from books with over the top explicit matter or show animals being harmed.
What do you think about writing negative reviews?
I believe in constructive criticism. I use the Oreo review that I learned from my former UCI writing professor, Lou Nelson: start with something positive, constructive criticism on what didn’t work for me and why, and then end on a positive note. I see no purpose in posting a hate review. You know the one that states, “This book sucks.” I think reviewers need to realize that others do read those reviews, including editors, publishers, and yes, even agents. This biz is small. You don’t want to burn any bridges.
Why are reviews important to share online?
I strongly feel that reviews are important. I read them but not before I do my own review on a book, as I don’t want that to influence me. I have to admit some ‘hate’ reviews have lead me to read some pretty amazing books.
Now it's time for Fast Faves with Kim!
~ Movies ~
Most loved – THE NOTEBOOK
Most hated – This one has to be CANNIBAL GIRLS. Seriously, this movie was shown after ALIVE, which was based on the real life story of some rugby players whose plane crashed in the Andes Mountains back in 1972. My mother took me to see ALIVE and it totally grossed me out. But the other movie? Omigosh, my father would hide behind a door and jump out, totally freaking me out. Yes, that's kind of what happened in that movie but only with a more gruesome outcome. To this day I avoid horror movies, which is kind of strange as I really love horror YA books. Well, that is, as long as there isn't any cannibalism in it. Yuck.
Haven’t seen, but probably should – I really want to see PERKS OF A WALLFLOWER.
Can recite by heart – TITANIC. I must have seen that movie a bazillion times, but the ending, where Rose lets go of Jack's hand, still gets me. Also STAR WARS. Another movie I saw a bazillion and a half times. I'm talking the original one, not the ones that came out later.
~ Books From Childhood ~
Most loved – ISLAND OF THE BLUE DOLPHINS
Haven’t read, but probably should – More classics like Jane Eyre. I've seen the movies but haven't read the books yet.
Can remember where you were when you first read it – SARA CREW by Frances_Hodgson_Burnett. I still remember how excited I was to be able to buy that book from my 5th grade Scholastic book order. Loved the story and was so excited later on when a film came out based on the adaption of the book.
Wish more people had read it – Wow, I'd love it if more people read my book CROSSED OUT. Other than that? I think more people should read books with smaller publishers. I learned this when I first helped judge the Cybils. There are some real gems hidden out there.
~ Foods ~
Most loved - Chocolate. Dark is my favorite. I feel chocolate can cure anything.
Most hated – Spam. I actually had a room mate who made Spam pizza. Ugh.
Haven’t eaten, but probably should – Real sushi. Not the California rolls but some with raw fish. So far I haven't been brave enough.
Would eat anytime, anywhere – Pizza. I love deep dish Sweet Pig pizza with pineapple.
Best fuel for writing – Probably a tea latte with soy creamer. Nom. My favorite has to be Teavana teas. They have some very yummy chocolate ones. Next is Starbucks of course. The salted caramel mochas are to die for!
~ TV Shows ~
Most loved – THE VAMPIRE DIARIES!
Most hated – I admit it, I didn't care much for SEINFIELD or FRIENDS.
Can remember where you were when you saw it – I also admit I had a HUGE crush on Speed Racer when I was a child. I even wanted to name my own daughter Trixie.
Wish more people had seen it – JERICHO. Loved this dystopian tale.
~ Items in Your Closet ~
Most loved – Hats! I love hats!
Most hated – Super tight pants or shirts.
Haven’t worn in forever, probably should throw it out – Some funky boots that don't go with anything.
Wish you’d never thrown them out – My 80s clothes including my Candies high heel shoes!
Why do I have so many – Pantyhose? I live in Southern CA and no one wears hose unless it's cooler.
~ Life ~
Best moment/memory - My first day at BYU. It was so surreal to realize that I finally was able to achieve my childhood dream of going away to school even when others told me I'd never do it.
Worst/most embarrassing moment - When I was sixteen, I went on a field trip to Universal Studios. While there, this one older man came out of a room and kept staring at me. It bugged me. I didn't wear my glasses, so he kind of looked blurry. Either way, he gave me the creeps as he followed our group. To make a long story short, I flashed him a rude sign.He laughed. When we got home, my mother turned on her favorite show: THE ROCKFORD FILES and I recognized who that guy was who'd stared at me. James Garner! Ohmigosh, I gave the bird to that actor! My mother just about died when I 'fessed up.
Haven't accomplished yet, but one day I'll - Finish my grad studies.
Childhood toy you'll never get rid of - My old Barbie doll. I love dolls!
Wish I had more time for this guilty pleasure - Wow, this is a toss up. If I had tons of time I'd go to a spa for the whole day and be pampered. I'd also love to go to yoga every other day. I'd love to have Savita, this wonderful yoga teacher at Yoga Works, work with me one on one. She's fab.
Follow Kim on Twitter: @ixtumea
Stay tuned next week for another editor interview!