Now, I will admit. If you're not into fantasy, you will not like the Abhorsen Series by Garth Nix. If you do, they are easily one of the best in young adult or adult for that matter. Though hardcore adult fantasy fans will likely find them too tame.
Before we get to the name, let's start with the rule breaking. We've all been told (over and over, and then have passed on this knowledge as if a badge of honor of having done it ourselves) that you should pretty much never start a story with a prologue. But they work so well to get your point across super fast and tell a lot in a one to two page punch, right? Right. Well, at least in Garth Nix's first book in the series, Sabriel, that's totally true. The prologue works for him.
Most of us have likely been told not to use too many gerunds ("ing" words) because that means you're telling. *gasp* And most times, I'd totally agree with this. I use them all the time, and catch myself often. I almost always find them when critiquing (lol). At first, it looks like there are a ton of them. But here's the trick... he uses them right. Here's an example:
"Feeling relatively warmer, Sabriel resumed climbing up the last, winding portion of the path, where the incline was so steep the pathmakers had resorted to cutting steps out of the granite--steps now worn and cumbling, prone to sliding away underfoot." - Garth Nix, SABRIELHe's only using them to describe something the MC is doing with the first two. She's feeling and climbing. The rest are in reference to other things. So it's not a sentence full of: She's sitting, thinking of her long lost grandma as she is winding the yarn into a ball. Which would be so wrong to write.
And finally, the title. In fact it's the title of the third book, as well as the series. Abhorsen. It seems a little close to abortion. Doesn't it? In fact I was reading the third book--This was a few years ago--and the edition I have is red. Someone actually asked me if I was reading a book on abortion and what that funny symbol meant. But in the end, it's a whatever moment. Because these books are so good, that Garth Nix can continue to break every rule in the book and I'll continue to read them.
Do you break rules? Are there books out there that you love despite the rule breaking?