This book is so good. Dark and disturbing fairy tales abound in this story of a girl and her mother, constantly on the run from "bad luck" that follows them. When strange things start to happen, and seem to be tied to an impossible to find book of fairy tales written by her grandmother, Alice is set on an adventure to find her mother and discover her true history. Completely unique, I never knew what was coming next. I loved this book and the characters. Though it had hints of familiarity, The Hazel Wood is one of the most unique fairy tale based books I've read.
For the first Friday since they've been going out, Chris has not sent Jessie a love letter. In fact, Chris has disappeared all together, and as one of a very few black kids in a small white town, this is hard to do. Did he run back to the city? Did he run into the guys who beat him up a few weeks before? Did he run away from Jessie, after she asked him for a week apart to think? As Jessie pieces Chris back together in her mind, she comes up with a more complete picture of the boy she loves. Mystery, love story and coming-of-age tale, this is a gripping, satisfying read.
A timely work that will debut on the New York Times Bestseller list, this YA novel has received heaps of praise and top reviews. Dealing with the unique circumstances faced by Muslim Americans, as well as the universal challenges of teenage love and life, this is sure to be an insightful and poignant read.
If you’re still reeling from watching the latest Star Wars movie & are ready to see Guardians of the Galaxy in the upcoming Avengers movie, this sci-fi book is perfect for you! Follow Androma, a captain known as the notorious Bloody Baroness & her crew made up of the fiercest women in the galaxy as they shoot across the stars getting caught up in space battles, prison breaks & a more. This non-stop story had me hooked from start to finish. After all the twists & turns, I’m already aching to get my hands on book two!
— ARC REVEIWER Bridey M., age 16
This was a fast-paced, comedic view into the life of an 18-year-old reality TV star. Jane’s sarcastic & often cynical point-of-view made the book funny, yet real. I recommend it to those interested in a quick, original story.
— ARC REVIEWER Isabel K., age 16
Jude is a 17-year-old mortal who has been living in the world of Faerie for 10 years. Despite being in this whimsical world for the majority of her life, she is looked down upon for being a mortal, & an undeserving brat for because she’s the general’s daughter. Jude has one desire: to prove them wrong. Jude is the amazing heroine you’ve always longed for, times ten! She’s an intriguing, morally ambiguous badass that will capture your heart. Set in a world that’ll sweep you off your feet with characters that will have you laughing, crying & cursing death, this amazing book should’ve been called, “The Cruel Queen.” A great read for fans of The Grisha Trilogy. I’ve got a new book to add to my list of favorite fantasies!
— ARC REVEIWER Gab V., age 15
Corey has moved from Lost Creek, Alaska, leaving the only life she ever knew. She also leaves her best friend Kyra behind. The two miss each other immensely, & finally just days before Corey is destined to return home, Kyra dies. Grief stricken, Corey immediately returns to Lost Creek only find it has changed. She can’t get a straight answer from anyone about Kyra’s death, & even worse, she’s viewed as an outsider. Corey has six days to make things right & find the truth behind Kyra’s death. But if she isn’t careful, she might end up joining Kyra.
— ARC REVIEWER Jenna U., age 13
A thrilling and action-packed tale of superheroes, villains, and all the ways the two sides may be more similar than either would imagine. A long-ago tragedy fuels Nova to avenge her family, but the complex, vibrant world that Marissa Meyer has created will make her plan more complicated than she expects. With the same great storytelling and relatable characters as the author's previous novels, this is a must-grab new series!!
I did not expect this to be a twist on a Zombie-apocalypse plot. However, this is not your cliché zombie story. Each character has such a complicated development, where you are constantly learning more & more about them, never fully knowing which side they are on. Suvada keeps you guessing with constant twists & turns, leaving several “Ah-ha!” moments for the reader to discover. My attention was held from the very first page. It’s a great story that not only has an extremely brave, smart woman as the protagonist, but also includes several other dimensional heroes It encourages science in the female world & also empowers people to question & to fight.
— ARC REVIEWER Kate S., age 16
As the story continues, we find Sefia and Archer back in the forest, having escaped the Guard, who will kill to get their hands on The Book. Searching for answers to Archer’s nightmares of his life as fighter, and Sefia’s is guilt over the deeds of her parents, they come upon a crew of Impressors. Between the two of them, they subdue the Impressors and rescue the captive boys, and thus is the beginning of the Bloodletters is born. Still trying to find a way to derail the Guard’s plan for world domination, will Sefia have to sacrifice all to save not only the kingdoms, but also Archer, whom she has come to love as more than a friend?
I loved this book! As the virtual reality genre continues to rise, with bestsellers like Marie Lu’s incredible book, Warcross, I’m enjoying it more & more. This branch of sci-fi is the future, & shows what kind of insane things can happen when we have everything available to us. Otherworld was tons of fun, & I enjoyed the whole ride. The government conspiracy aspect was great, along with the “anything is possible” setting. Simon was hilarious & his companions were strong & lovable characters. I give it 3 and half stars!
— ARC REVIEWER Gab V., age 15
Look out Charles Dickens – there’s a new Scrooge in town! And this time, instead of a crabby old man, its’ a self-absorbed, over entitled, nasty teenage girl named Holly Chase! When three ghosts visit Holly on Christmas Eve, she learns what will happen unless she changes her ways. Just like Scrooge, she has a choice – redemption or death. Can she be rehabilitated? Better yet, can she help rehabilitate another Scrooge named Ethan, who is just like herself, except he’s a self-centered, money driven, teenage boy? Laughing and maybe even crying a little, you’ll get to the end of this book and say “Wow”, I didn’t see that coming!
With his new work, Phillip Pullman takes us back to the world of the unforgettable His Dark Materials series, and introduces a new cast of compelling characters and locations.
Malcolm Polstead is a smart boy who notices everything happening and being said around his parent’s inn in Oxford, where he finds a secret message about the dangerous substance called Dust. Hannah, the spy whom the message was for, finds Malcolm, and his life is never the same. Malcolm, now a spy, encounters suspicious characters everywhere, all trying to gain access to the adorable baby girl Lyra, who is hidden with neighboring nuns. Malcolm loves Lyra, and he, his friend Alice and their daemons face constant dangers and make remarkable sacrifices to keep Lyra safe through a terrible rainstorm.
La Belle Sauvage is a constant joy to read. The characters are fascinating, and the action is thrilling. Pullman’s powerful writing made me feel like I was right beside them as Malcolm navigated the Thames during the storm and fought off the evil characters chasing he and Lyra. I cannot wait to see what happens to these characters during the sequel. Whether you are a fan of the Golden Compass or reading Pullman for the first time, this book will overwhelm you with emotion and make you not want to leave its world.
Martin Rising is a beautiful poem and tribute to the prophetic life of Martin Luther King Jr. In such a graceful way it both educated me and made me feel connected emotionally to the last months of MLK's life; from learning about his family and friendships, his last supper, the weather the days of the marches to the immense sense of hope he delivered! A must have for every school and home library!
Deep in the deserts of Colorado, a small town of frequent pilgrimage is located. People come from all over the world to have the saints of Bicho Raro perform miracles on them. As perfect as this sounds, don’t forget, you must escape your own darkness before the light can come onto you. And never, ever forget the most important rule: the pilgrims & the saints must not interact. This book was a marvelously creepy, atmospheric urban fantasy that took my breath away. It follows three cousins, Beatriz, Joaquin & Daniel Soria, as this family-oriented & eerie yet beautiful novel takes you away to the point where you can almost feel the dry, hot air around you, the desert sand under your feet & the pulsing electricity of miracles. This book is perfect for Halloween time but also great for anyone who loves character-driven stories.
— ARC REVIEWER Gab V., age 15
There is a missing person mystery in this book, but it isn’t really about that. It’s about friendship and love, it’s about trying to truly understand your best friend, it’s about anxiety and fighting your demons, and giving in to them sometimes. It’s about mental illness. It’s about grief. It’s about life. It’s beautiful and important. It’s a John Green book, possibly the best John Green book. It made me feel less alone. I loved how friendship, in this book as in life, is just as important and turbulent as romance. You will cry, you will laugh, you will fall in love with Aza, Daisy, Davis, Mychal, Noah, and the rest. I can’t stop thinking about this book in the best possible way.
Here’s a riveting mystery novel that also incorporates character development & a wildly weird combo of realism & supernatural. A lot of the issues addressed in the story are similar to those that everyone will eventually face in their lives. I recommend this book to anyone looking for a quick read that hits the heart.
— ARC REVEIWER Jade L., age 16
After Forgetting, there is Knowing. From Earth came Canaan. Centuries after the first ship to establish a new colony called Canaan, Earth has developed a disease that only untainted blood can cure, and a third ship is sent to find out what happened to the first two ships and if there are any survivors. What they find is not what they expected. Narrated by both Beckett (from Earth) and Samara (from Canaan), both fight to preserve their planets and learn what neither Know has been Forgotten.
When Sparrow is found on the edge of the roof at school, they think she was going to jump. Nobody believes her when she says that she wasn’t. Sparrow loves reading & birds & everyone believed she was happy…except she wasn’t. For years she would eat lunch in the bathroom alone & she never talked to anyone. So when she is released from the hospital & put into therapy, she does start to talk. Slowly, of course, her life starts fighting to fix itself. This is a tale of music, friendship & finding yourself. I loved this book so much because Sparrow had such a unique voice. And I found myself rooting for her all the through the story. It also, made me want to jump into the book & give her a hug! That’s how full of emotions it was.
— Jenna U., Age 13
Powerful. Inspiring. Important. Taking three girls' POV stories and mixing them with anonymous and semi-anonymous thoughts from other girls in town, The Nowhere Girls tackles rape culture in an important way.
Grace’s mom is a pastor, recently kicked out of their southern church. Now, Grace is the new girl in a small Oregon town. Her faith is present, but not overwhelming. Rosina is a queer girl who wants more than her conservative Mexican family offers. She isn’t afraid to rebel, but is afraid that the more she pushes back – the more she may lose her family. Erin is on the spectrum, planning her day minute by minute and idolizing Data from Star Trek TNG. She approaches new territory for herself and pushes to do what she knows is right, despite her own secrets and issues.
When Grace discovers that the former owner of her new room, Lucy, was raped and run out of town, she knows she needs to do something. Together with Rosina and Erin, they form an anonymous group and invite the girls of their high school to gather and talk about the situation. The ultimate goal is to find a way to get justice for Lucy... along the way the girls have important conversations, disagreements, and learn things about themselves and their friends.
I loved reading this book. It was not always easy, but these conversations shouldn't be. The powerful message that we are stronger together and that everyone has a different point of view on similar topics was executed wonderfully. I felt educated on so many different points of view and, ultimately, hopeful at the end.
The Language of Thorns is a delicious collection of six homespun fairy-tales, rooted in cultural myth and folklore. Complete with gorgeous illustrations that build from one page to the next, this compendium is an excellent choice for cold weather reading: crisp, haunting, and just a tad sweet. So, maybe you’ll savor each tale in little bites, like a decadent meal, or maybe you’ll choose to gulp down the entire book in one setting. Whatever you decide, know either way, you’re in for a real treat.
Farway (“Far” for short) and his team are leading a life of crime, plundering treasures from across the timeline…until they meet a mysterious girl named Eliot, who seems to always be one step ahead of them in this exciting, time-travel, action & adventure mystery. With the treasure hunting adventure of Tomb Raider, the slickness of James Bond, the time-travelling shenanigans of Doctor Who, and the mystery of Sherlock Holmes, this book will hook you from the first page and never let you go. Be prepared to fall in love with compelling characters and lose yourself to this AAA grade story. To me, Invictus is basically a time-travelling Indiana Jones story and I loved it.
— ARC Reviewer Fisher H., age 14
The three H's (hilarious, heartbreaking and hopeful) best describe this novel written for......everyone!! Mr. Reck references and relishes Sherman Alexie's Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian and his tribute is more than worthy of his idol. Matt Wainwright; narrator, basketball geek and unrequited lover is sure to resonate with all readers 12 and up.
— Mary T.
Kiko is an artist going off to college. But when she doesn’t get accepted to her dream school. Kiko isn’t sure what to do. Then her Uncle Max moves back in, & Kiko knows that she needs to get out of the house & soon, because of past experiences. She learns the importance of listening to others & the true meaning of family. I enjoyed this book because it was very realistic. I felt I was right there with Kiko & feeling what she was going through. This is a real, raw story with some difficult topics for ages 12 & up.
— ARC REVIEWER Emma T., age 12
Isobel, a master of her craft, paints portraits for many of the fair folk in her world. One day, the mischievous, attractive prince of the Autumn Court, named Rook, shows up at her parlor, asking for a portrait. When Isobel can’t seem to get Rook’s eyes right, she paints mortal sorrow into them. The issue with that is that fair folk don’t feel emotions. Rook is furious, & takes her on a journey to the Autumn Court to be tried. On this adventure, their hatred turns into something else, something romantic, something that is not at all allowed in the fairy world. Isobel & Rook’s journey is a very entertaining, tense love story, filled with the high fantasy that we love. I personally really, really enjoyed this book. It reminded me very much of A Court of Thorns & Roses, with just a hint of Heartless.
— ARC REVIEWER Gabby V., age 15
Emika has nothing – no parents, no money, and soon no place to live. Though she’s an exceptionally talented hacker, no one will hire her since one mistake has given her a criminal record. That is until she accidentally hacks into the Warcross World Finals. She gets whisked out of her life into a new one where everything is wiped clean – but with a catch – or is it a trap? Of all Marie Lu’s stories, this is by far the most exciting, and I can’t wait for the next one!
A thrilling, immersive ride through a series of lies, personal reinventions, and a deadly quest for a privileged life. Jule changes herself at will, to cover up the destruction she has caused in the lives of others. Cunningly written in a reverse timeline of events, the journey back through the evolution of the girl Jule has become is captivating and fast-paced. A suspenseful and diabolical story!
Esther's family has been ruled by fear ever since her grandfather met Death face-to-face and their family was cursed. When an old classmate pickpockets her list of worst nightmares, a quest to face the things that terrify her is put into motion. Quirky, tender, and full of compelling reasons to conquer what scares you, this is a thoughtful but hilarious book about death, anxiety, and love. Absolutely one of the best new books this fall!
This book was such a Fun Read! One thing I loved about it was the elaborate, adventurous aspect of it. Who doesn’t love a good adventure book?! Another aspect that made it for me was the paranormal. I have a love for dragons & the fact that the protagonist had one as a pet really sold it for me! As for the cover, let me tell you, it is one of the most BEAUTIFUL ones I’ve seen this year. It’s why I picked up the book. What a uniquely beautiful story of adventure & sisterhood. Because of some creepy parts, I recommend this book to ages 13 & up.
— Gabby V., Age 15
I learned so much from this simple telling of a complex story. This memoir is a great read for understanding the human effects of war, religious prejudice, and the struggle of refugees transplanted in a new place and culture. A timely read!
This is a novel about a 15-year-old writing a novel about how boring her life is. Of course, it's not actually boring because it's personal and real and stuff happens. The "author" says it best: a grown-up might freak about the swearing and drugs and stuff, but really, it shows that we're model citizens most of the time.
Many years ago, during war between two kingdoms, a country called Nacea was destroyed when the troops protecting the land abandoned them to the “shadows”—monsters that kill in gruesome ways. As far as Sal knows, she is the only Nacean to escape the massacre & she wants revenge. Then Sal discovers a poster pronouncing the auditions for Opal, one of the “Queen’s left hands,” her personal group of four assassins. Sal jumps at the chance to reach her goal: kill the ones responsible for her people’s death. However, the auditions certainly are not to be fun & games. In fact, they don’t end until the Queen chooses the remaining top three or…until there is one person left alive. Unknown to Sal, not al of the lords & ladies who surrendered are happy with the way the war went. As dissatisfaction grows, a plan is set in motion & soon becomes clear that things are about to change. This YA fantasy has plenty of action with a hint of romance to carry you from page to page.
— ARC REVIEWER Adella C., age 14