September 21, 2017

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Oh boy

I call bullshit on Daniel Handler’s Sunday New York Times essay about the need of teenaged boys for dirty books. Of course, yes, kids read for the dirty parts, girls as well as boys. And you could make an argument, and I don’t understand why Handler didn’t, that the prurient interests of girls are better […]

YA: Quirky Romance, Tough Decisions, & a Timely “Tick Tock Man” | August 2017 Xpress Reviews

This month’s YA web-only reviews feature a new voice in gritty contemporary fiction, a teenage spin on Yoruba folklore, the psychological push-pull of social media mind games, and more.

This article was published in School Library Journal's August 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

YA: New Titles from Joseph Bruchac, Victoria Schwab, & More | July 2017 Xpress Reviews

This month’s YA Xpress Reviews are bound to please fans of ongoing series. Joseph Bruchac brings his “Killer of Enemies” trilogy to a close, Victoria Schwab presents the latest installment in the “Monsters of Verity” series.

This article was published in School Library Journal's July 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Funny YA Favorites | SLJ Spotlight

Not all of young adult literature is dark and cry-inducing.

Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert | SLJ Review

COLBERT, Brandy. Little & Lion. 336p. Little, Brown. Aug. 2017. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780316349000.

Gr 10 Up –Suzette has been devoted to Lionel from an early age, and vice versa. At first glance, they don’t look like siblings—a black girl and white boy barely a year apart in age—but their blended family is closely knit. At her parents’ insistence, Suzette has been away at boarding school since Lionel’s mental health began to deteriorate and he was diagnosed with bipolar […]

Soldier Boy by Keely Hutton | SLJ Review

HUTTON, Keely. Soldier Boy. 336p. Farrar. Jun. 2017. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780374305635.

Gr 9 Up –A compelling tale that recounts the story of former, real-life Ugandan child soldier Ricky Richard Anywar. Told in alternating chapters that focus on Ricky’s past and the present-day story of Samuel, this brutally honest novel will have readers struggling to move through the often gruesome initiation of kidnapped children into the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). Ricky is consumed by fear and desperation as he […]

How To Disappear by Sharon Huss Roat | SLJ Review

ROAT, Sharon Huss. How To Disappear. 384p. HarperCollins/HarperTeen. Aug. 2017. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780062291752.

Gr 7 Up –Vicky Decker relies upon her best friend, Jenna, to shield her from stressful social situations. That is, until Jenna and her family move away and Vicky’s social anxiety is cast into sharp relief against Jenna’s seeming ease at making new friends. To cope with her jealousy and loneliness, Vicky Photoshops herself into one exciting social setting after another and uploads the images […]

Landscape with Invisible Hand by M.T. Anderson | SLJ Review

ANDERSON, M.T. Landscape with Invisible Hand. 160p. Candlewick. Sept. 2017. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780763687892.

Gr 9 Up –The vuvv came in peace, offering new technology and life-changing medical breakthroughs. Yet their presence on Earth has slowly eroded Adam Costello’s small town. Joblessness, illness, and food scarcity are the realities of his shaky existence, and his only solace is in his painting. When Adam begins to date Chloe, they realize that there’s a moneymaking opportunity in their relationship. Taking […]

YA: Outlandish Fantasy & Poignant Realistic Fiction | June 2017 Xpress Reviews

The newest YA titles include both action-packed fantasy set in long-ago worlds and insightful realistic fiction about identity and the coming-of-age process.

This article was published in School Library Journal's June 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

1980s Heartthrob Andrew McCarthy Now an Accidental YA Author

Fly Away Home represents a first for the actor-writer-director, who counts many librarians as both former and current fans.

YA: Mean Girls, “Mad Miss Mimic,” and Mars | May 2017 Xpress Reviews

Eve Darrows delivers a poignant, gripping exploration of bullying; Sarah Henster’s latest is sure to please fans of Victoriana; and Jonathan Maberry takes a trip to Mars.

This article was published in School Library Journal's May 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Dedicated Middle School Collections in the Public Library: A New Trend?

Public libraries are starting to develop collections specifically for readers in grades six to eight. The selection process can be tricky and time-consuming—but often well worth the effort.

YA Xpress Reviews | March 2017

A clever and intriguing love story, diverse speculative fiction, and more.

This article was published in School Library Journal's March 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

All the (Psychological) Feels | Adult Books 4 Teens

It’s been an emotional time for many, and these rich reads, with their deep explorations of the psyche, are bound to resonate with teens.

YA Xpress Reviews | February 2017

YA titles featuring Jason Bourne–esque adventures and nonstop sci-fi action are bound to please teen readers.

This article was published in School Library Journal's February 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

“Playing Puzzle Master”: Adam Silvera on Complex Narratives, Diversity, and More

Silvera spoke with SLJ about the need for diversity in YA literature and the challenges of penning a novel that successfully incorporates utter joy and emotional devastation.

Download SLJ’s Sneak Peek Guide to Spring/Summer 2017 Titles

Over 150 of the most hotly anticipated spring and summer titles, hand-picked by the SLJ editors. With info on ALA author signings and galley giveaways.

Tying Up Loose Ends | Adult Books 4 Teens

After a few months absence, the Adult Books 4 Teens column returns, with historical fiction from Cat Winters, science fiction/horror from Jay Kristoff, and an investigation of the case at the center of the podcast Serial.

YA Xpress Reviews | January 2017

Sara Wolf’s follow up to Love Me Never; the conclusion to Marie Lu’s “Young Elites” series; the latest “Team DEVIL” title.

This article was published in School Library Journal's January 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Categories Blur as Teen Lit Comes of Age

A look at the elastic borders of YA, New Adult, and adult publishing.

This article was published in School Library Journal's November 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.