Category Archives: Teen/Young Adult

Loving Vs. Virginia

Loving Vs. Virginia: A Documentary Novel of the Landmark Civil Rights Case by Patricia Hruby Powell and illustrated by Shadra Strickland is a large, beautifully made historical novel-in-verse. Well-researched (there are lists of the author’s interviews and sources in the back) … Continue reading

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The Memory of Light

There are a lot of dark themes in this book: suicide, depression, mental illness, difficult family relationships, and yet The Memory of Light doesn’t feel overly dark. Its mood is overall, one of hope and unconventional friendship. Francisco X. Stork has … Continue reading

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Dark Shimmer

Dark Shimmer, Donna Jo Napoli‘s newest reworked fairy tale, set in medieval Laguna Veneta, Italy, is the story of Snow White’s stepmother and how she came to be evil enough to attempt murder four times. Named Docle (Sweet) in this story, we … Continue reading

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True Believer

True Believer, second in the Make Lemonade trilogy by Virginia Euwer Wolff, is an honest look at faith, friendship and romance as seen through the eyes of LaVaughn while she navigates high school. Determined to stay on track for college though the odds seem … Continue reading

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Make Lemonade

When fourteen-year-old LaVaughn finds a babysitting job in order to earn money for college (and no one in her whole building has ever been to college), she ends up taking care of Jilly and Jeremy, the children of a seventeen-year-old mother … Continue reading

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Open Mic

Open Mic: Riffs on Life Between Cultures in Ten Voices, edited by Mitali Perkins, includes stories by Mitali Perkins, Gene Luen Yang, Francisco X. Stork and more. Each of the ten stories for teens explore race and culture–all with humour. … Continue reading

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Tropical Secrets: Holocaust Refugees in Cuba

Beginning with June of 1939, Daniel, a German Jew, flees Germany by boat. He is alone because his parents only had enough money to pay for one person’s passage. The boat’s passengers are refused entry to the United States and Canada, … Continue reading

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The Scar Boys

Written as a college entrance essay, The Scar Boys begins and ends with the friendship of Harbinger (Harry) and Johnny, in middle school, when Johnny calls a bully off of Harry and strikes up a conversation. Harry is surprised into a … Continue reading

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Three Books Featuring Emily Dickinson

I have unintentionally read three books about Emily Dickinson, only one of which did I realize was going to feature the late poet. It’s easy to become enamoured with Emily Dickinson, reclusive, poignant word artist. Here they are in order of … Continue reading

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Home of the Brave

Home of the Brave, a novel-in-verse by Katherine Applegate, is a moving story about Kek, who as a refugee from Sudan who as seen atrocities never loses hope of seeing his mother again. This story has an authentic and perceptive voice, beautiful language and … Continue reading

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