May 28, 2017

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Book Review: That Thing We Call a Heart by Sheba Karim

Publisher’s description This young adult novel by Sheba Karim, author of Skunk Girl, is a funny and affecting coming-of-age story for fans of Jenny Han, Megan McCafferty, and Sara Farizan. Shabnam Qureshi is facing a summer of loneliness and boredom until she meets Jamie, who scores her a job at his aunt’s pie shack. Shabnam […]

Book Review: Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan

Publisher’s description A Pakistani-American Muslim girl struggles to stay true to her family’s vibrant culture while simultaneously blending in at school after tragedy strikes her community in this sweet and moving middle grade novel from the award-winning author of It’s Ramadan, Curious George and Golden Domes and Silver Lanterns. Amina has never been comfortable in […]

Wolf in the Snow

Wolf in the Snow Written and Illustrated by Matthew Cordell Published in 2017 by Feiwel and Friends ISBN 978-1-250-07636-6 Grades preK-3   Book Review Get ready to challenge all of your assumptions about stories of girls in red-hooded jackets and wolves. Counter to traditional fairy tales that caution (and condition) us to be fearful of […]

Book Review: Pointe, Claw by Amber J. Keyser

Publisher’s description Jessie Vale dances in an elite ballet program. She has to be perfect to land a spot with the professional company. When Jessie is cast in an animalistic avant-garde production, her careful composure cracks wide open. Nothing has felt more dangerous. Meanwhile, her friend Dawn McCormick’s world is full of holes. She wakes […]

Book Review: Armstrong and Charlie by Steven B. Frank

Publisher’s description Charlie isn’t looking forward to sixth grade. If he starts sixth grade, chances are he’ll finish it. And when he does, he’ll grow older than the brother he recently lost. Armstrong isn’t looking forward to sixth grade, either. When his parents sign him up for Opportunity Busing to a white school in the […]

Book Review: Radio Silence by Alice Oseman

Publisher’s description From critically acclaimed author Alice Oseman comes a smartly crafted contemporary YA novel, perfect for readers who love Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl. This is an utterly captivating and authentic new teen novel from the author of Solitaire, which VOYA said “could put her among the great young adult fiction authors.” Frances Janvier spends most […]

Book Review: The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

Publisher’s description From the multi-award-winning author of Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe comes a gorgeous new story about love, identity, and families lost and found. Sal used to know his place with his adoptive gay father, their loving Mexican-American family, and his best friend, Samantha. But it’s senior year, and suddenly […]

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: At the Edge of the Universe by Shaun David Hutchinson

Publisher’s description From the author of We Are the Ants and The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley comes the heartbreaking story of a boy who believes the universe is slowly shrinking as things he remembers are being erased from others’ memories. Tommy and Ozzie have been best friends since the second grade, and boyfriends since […]

Book Review: Run by Kody Keplinger

Publisher’s description Bo Dickinson is a girl with a wild reputation, a deadbeat dad, and a mama who’s not exactly sober most of the time. Everyone in town knows the Dickinsons are a bad lot, but Bo doesn’t care what anyone thinks. Agnes Atwood has never gone on a date, never even stayed out past […]

Book Review: The Geek’s Guide to Unrequited Love by Sarvenaz Tash

Publisher’s description John Hughes meets Comic Con in this hilarious, unabashedly romantic, coming-of-age novel about a teenager who is trying to get his best friend to fall in love with him from the author of Three Day Summer. Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy… Archie and Veronica… Althena and Noth… …Graham and Roxy? Graham met his best […]

Book Review: How It Ends by Catherine Lo

Publisher’s description There are two sides to every story. It’s friends-at-first-sight for Jessie and Annie, proving the old adage that opposites attract. Shy, anxious Jessie would give anything to have Annie’s beauty and confidence. And Annie thinks Jessie has the perfect life, with her close-knit family and killer grades. They’re BFFs . . . until […]

Raymie Nightingale

Raymie Nightingale Written by Kate DiCamillo Published by Candlewick Press, 2016 ISBN 978-0-7636-8117-3 Grades 4-8 Book Review  “The world went on. People left and people died and people went to memorial services and put orange blocks of cheese into their purses. People confessed to you that they were hungry all the time. And then you […]

Take 5: YA Lit with Great Female Friendships

Yesterday I shared with you a little bit about my feelings about people telling The Teen that she is “too sensitive”. It’s something that we obviously talk about a lot because I want to remind her that she can and should be able to express her feelings and stand up for herself. The other part […]

A Thousand Praises for A Thousand Nights

A Thousand Nights, E.K. Johnston Hyperion, October 2015 Reviewed from ARC I already told you this is a great year for fantasy, and I’m back to today to continue building the case. And this is probably the one that most deserves the Printz, because for all the brilliance of The Scorpion Rules, the originality of […]

Book Review: Breakaway by Kat Spears

Publisher’s description: When Jason Marshall’s younger sister passes away, he knows he can count on his three best friends and soccer teammates–Mario, Jordie, and Chick–to be there for him. With a grief-crippled mother and a father who’s not in the picture, he needs them more than ever. But when Mario starts hanging out with a […]

Book Review: Proof of Forever by Lexa Hillyer

  Imagine you could go back in time and relive 5 days of your life. Would you make the same choices, knowing what you know now? Would you hope you were altering the future? Would you want to maybe stay in the past? These are the questions the characters in Proof of Forever by Lexa […]

Friendship: Real, Imagined, and Spare │ JLG’s Booktalks to Go

If keeping friends is difficult, making them must seem insurmountable for some kids. The following intermediate chapter books selected by the editors at Junior Library Guild offer all kinds of situations that will make readers laugh, cry, and feel as if they’ve found new friends.

Book Review: Anything Could Happen by Will Walton

In Will Walton’s Anything Could Happen, 15-year-old Tretch realizes he is in love with Matt, his straight best friend, while sitting together in church and hearing the message “hold fast to that which is good.” Tretch isn’t out yet, even though he suspects that Matt, who has two gay dads (and is often assumed to […]

Roundup: Books That Pass the Bechdel Test

For years in my teens and early twenties, I read chick-lit like it was going out of style. I didn’t mind the label or the candy colored covers or the many many headless women — I was young, and not in love, and these books filled a hunger. I now scorn the love triangle in […]