February 20, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

The Importance of Girls’ Stories: SLJ Chats with Nova Ren Suma About “The Walls Around Us”

YA novelist Nova Ren Suma shares what inspired her to write about killer ballerinas and a bookish incarcerated teen in her latest work, which explores feminism, friendship, and unlikable narrators.


Descent is my favorite book of 2015 so far, and one I expect to see on best lists come next winter. Why? Tim Johnston combines edge-of-your-seat suspense with family drama, tragedy, and an unforgettable setting. The characters are real, which is what makes their fates so suspenseful, of course. And it is incredibly well-written. There are […]

The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry

Gabrielle Zevin, the popular YA author of Elsewhere, Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac and the Birthright series, has a wonderful new adult novel out this month. Although there is nothing specifically teen about The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry, this is the kind of book that anyone who loves bookstores and books will simply […]

Pick of the Day: The One Safe Place

An original dystopian story for middle-grade readers.

Algonquin Spring/Summer Kids 2014 | Preview Peek

Middle school librarian and blogger Laura Lutz provides an insiders’ view of Algonquin’s preview of its upcoming titles for young readers—and reveals which books most caught her eye.

The Recent Past

Three novels set in the recent past all center on adolescents betrayed or abandoned by the adults in their lives. Jamie Ford‘s debut novel, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, was a hugely successful debut. At the time of publication it was recommended for teen readers, and justifiably so. More recently, it was […]

Weekly Reviews: Great Spring Fiction

Today we highlight three very different spring novels that all hinge on a crucial element of teen appeal — forging one’s own identity. Daniel Wallace is best known as the author of Big Fish. The Kings and Queens of Roam combines folklore and light fantasy elements with family drama, in particular that of two sisters […]

Review: Good Kings Bad Kings

Susan Nussbaum has already won the PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction for this, her first novel, Good Kings Bad Kings. The Bellwether Prize was created by Barbara Kingsolver to honor writing that addresses issues of social justice and the impact of culture and politics on human relationships. It is now administered by PEN America. Previous […]

Weekly Reviews: Nonfiction

This is Sonia Sotomayor’s 8th week on the New York Times Hardcover Nonfiction Best Seller list, up to #4 from #5 last week. (Sandra Day O’Connor’s book, Out of Order, debuts at #11.) I am particularly excited to write about My Beloved World this week because I recently had a chance to booktalk it to a […]

New Bites: Cast Your Vote for Free Expression in NCAC’s Teen Film Contest

Check out the latest News Bites for information on the National Coalition Against Censorship’s FIlm Contest, books for GLBTQ Youth, and the latest ebook news.