November 23, 2017

The Advocate's Toolbox

Book Review: We Are Okay by Nina LaCour

Publisher’s description You go through life thinking there’s so much you need. . . . Until you leave with only your phone, your wallet, and a picture of your mother. Marin hasn’t spoken to anyone from her old life since the day she left everything behind. No one knows the truth about those final weeks. […]

Book Review: American Street by Ibi Zoboi

Publisher’s description American Street is an evocative and powerful coming-of-age story perfect for fans of Everything, Everything; Bone Gap; and All American Boys. In this stunning debut novel, Pushcart-nominated author Ibi Zoboi draws on her own experience as a young Haitian immigrant, infusing this lyrical exploration of America with magical realism and vodou culture. On […]

Book Review: The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

When I’m reviewing books for professional publications, I stay quiet about them on social media. I’m always really excited once a review comes out to be able to talk about the book, finally! Here’s one of my most recent reviews, which originally appeared in the February 2017 issue of School Library Journal. I am SO EXCITED to now […]

Book Review: The Bad Decisions Playlist by Michael Rubens

Publisher’s description Sixteen-year-old Austin is always messing up and then joking his way out of tough spots. The sudden appearance of his allegedly dead father, who happens to be the very-much-alive rock star Shane Tyler, stops him cold. Austin—a talented musician himself—is sucked into his newfound father’s alluring music-biz orbit, pulling his true love, Josephine, […]

Book Review: Wild Swans by Jessica Spotswood

Publisher’s description The summer before Ivy’s senior year is going to be golden-all bonfires, barbeques, and spending time with her best friends. For once, she will just get to be. No summer classes, none of Granddad’s intense expectations to live up to the family name. For generations, the Milbourn women have lead extraordinary lives-and died […]

Book Review: Saving Montgomery Sole by Mariko Tamaki

Publisher’s description A beautiful and offbeat novel from Mariko Tamaki, co-creator of the bestselling Printz Honor and Caldecott Honor Book This One Summer. Montgomery Sole is a square peg in a small town, forced to go to a school full of jocks and girls who don’t even know what irony is. It would all be […]

Mixed Me by Taye Diggs and Shane W. Evans | SLJ Review

DIGGS, Taye. Mixed Me! illus. by Shane W. Evans. 40p. Feiwel & Friends. Oct. 2015. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781250047199.
Gr 2-5–A little boy with wildly curly hair navigates the social terrain of being a biracial child. Diggs’s short, choppy, rhyming verses convey the busyness of a kid who likes “to go FAST!” All through his day he encounters people staring and asking questions. “See, my dad’s a deep brown and my mom’s rich cream and honey. Then people see me, and […]

Book Review: Joyride by Anna Banks

In Joyride, by Anna Banks, Carly and Arden find themselves falling for each other, against all odds. 16-year-old Carly Vega works the graveyard shift at a local gas station. She turns over all of her earnings to her older brother, Julio, as they work hard to pull together enough money to smuggle their parents and […]

Book Review: The Porcupine of Truth by Bill Konigsberg

There are some books that you finish and think, well, that’s it—I can’t pick up another book today. Gotta let this one sit. Bill Konigsberg’s The Porcupine of Truth is one of those books. In fact, I suspect I will be thinking about this book for a long time to come. This was the 65th […]

Book Review: Finding Paris by Joy Preble

Finding Paris by Joy Preble Spoiler-free part of the review: Sisters Paris and Leo (Leonora) always look out for one another. Throughout their mother’s many boyfriends and their many moves, they’ve found comfort in sticking together. Paris has recently graduated from Las Vegas High. Leo is focused on her future, busy studying for the SATs […]

Families: All Shapes, All Sizes | Fiction Preschool to Grade 4

This month’s offerings for younger readers present a variety of families, from a family of bunnies who adopt a wolf to some poignant father-daughter picture books.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2015 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.