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Late July 2013

Teenreads.com
Newsletter
July 24, 2013


Quick Links to Features on Teenreads.com

 
Surviving the Heat with Water and BOOKS!
During the dead of winter, when I feel as if I will never feel warm EVER AGAIN, I salivate over the thought of summer. I even dream of palm trees and beaches, although I’ve never lived anywhere that could boast having either of those. When I get cold, I freeze and don’t thaw until the temperature raises about 75 degrees for at LEAST five days in a row. Seriously! So you can imagine how much I appreciate the heat --- even if it does tend to rise to levels unbearable to the average human.

But when is the hot too hot for me? When it takes me the entire day to cool down from a run. When salads become, not just a way to stay healthy, but a necessity so as not to heat my apartment any more than it already is. And when reading outside becomes an afternoon nap (beware sunburn!) because focusing on the page is too much effort. Last weekend, New York City hit its heat peak. I’m happy to say that it has since cooled down, but let’s not count our chickens before their eggs fry on the sidewalk. There is still a bit of summer left to go!

Speaking of the summer still remaining, have you shared how many books you’re planning to read this summer? It’s not too late to set a summer reading goal! So far, of those of you who answered, 21% committed to reading 6-10 books this summer; 18% set the stacks high with more than 40 books this summer; and 17% of you are more moderate with 11-15 books for this summer’s reading. It’s not too late to weigh in! Take our poll to tell us how many books you're going to read this summer.

Our friends over at Paper Lantern Lit asked us to let you all know about a special event on Saturday, October 12th for those in the New York City area. The Paper Lantern Lit Writer's Intensive is a daylong workshop, which is for YA or Middle Grade authors at any stage of the writing process and aims to take your writing to the next level. The keynote speaker will be NYT best-selling author Lauren Oliver! Click here for more details and to apply to participate. Please note: you must be over 18 to apply.

One more thing before we get to the BOOKS. Have you liked us on Facebook? If you don’t, you may want to! We’re beginning to do ongoing contests on Facebook. We will post a memorable quotation from a YA book and if you comment with the correct title and author name, you are entered to win a prize! The first quote will be posted next Tuesday, July 30th. And if you are on Twitter, don’t forget to follow us there too!

Has anyone ever told you that you give TMI --- too much information? And it’s probably unsolicited, too. That’s one of Holly's specialties in Maurene Goo’s SINCE YOU ASKED…, which we are sharing as a Special Feature. Fifteen-year-old Holly Kim is the copyeditor for her high school's newspaper. When she accidentally submits an article that rips everyone to shreds, she gets her own column and rants her way through the school year. Can she survive high school embarrassments, all while struggling to balance her family's traditional Korean values?

If you babysit, having anything happen to the kids in your care is probably your worst nightmare. In IMPERFECT SPIRAL by Debbie Levy, that fear becomes a reality. Here Daniel takes adorable five-year-old Humphrey to the park to help him throw a football with a perfect spiral. However, on the walk back to the house, Humphrey is hit by a car and killed. Dealing with death and further tragedy, can she find a way to do right by Humphrey's memory and forgive herself for his death? Teen Board member Kate F. reviews, “Debbie Levy combines tragedy and humor in this realistic fiction novel that deals with problems prevalent in society today.”

Perhaps an unconventional romance may be what you need for summer. Corey Ann Haydu’s OCD LOVE STORY follows Bea, who knows instantly that Beck is her kind of crazy. Sweet, strong, kinda-messed-up Beck understands her like no one else can. He makes her feel almost normal. He makes her feel like she could fall in love again. Reviewer Ashley Tran writes, “Page after page, Corey Ann Haydu creates a character who lays out the situation as it is --- no flowers, no beating around the bush and no hiding from the ugly truth of the matter.”

Or get your heart pumping with TRULY, MADLY, DEADLY by Hannah Jayne. Sawyer Dodd is a star athlete, a straight-A student, and the envy of every other girl who wants to date Kevin Anderson. When Kevin dies in a tragic car crash, Sawyer is stunned. Then she opens her locker to find a note that says, “You're welcome.” Someone saw what he did to her. Someone knows that Sawyer and Kevin weren't the perfect couple they seemed to be. And that someone --- a killer --- is now shadowing Sawyer's every move... Caroline Osborn describes, “In TRULY, MADLY, DEADLY, Jayne proves herself to be an economical storyteller who knows how to keep her readers in suspense, even if they have a pretty good guess of who the killer might be.” Sounds like a great read to put on your summer reading list!

YA lit doesn’t have to be boys vs. girls, right? There are books that boys AND girls can love! Teenreads.com’s "He Said/She Said" feature aims to highlight a book each month to discuss its guy and girl appeal, first with the cover and then with its content --- and YOU get to tell us what you think. Our first featured title, TANDEM by Anna Jarzab and our second featured title, THE PARADOX OF VERTICAL FLIGHT both gathered some terrific attention. Now the results are in for our July "He Said/She Said,” which features ASYLUM by Madeleine Roux. Click here to see how you all answered in the cover survey, and read what Omar and Cara have to say about the book!

And.… We have made our decisions, and enthusiastically present you the new Teen Board! This group of 27 teens will be writing reviews, pitching blog posts and weighing in on YA from July to December 2013. Take a peek at their profiles to see if there’s a teen whose reading preferences match yours.

Back in March, we updated our Teen Ultimate Reading List and as promised we’ve been breaking out the list by category for those of you who like to read by specific genres. We’ve just added last two genre lists to the seven we already have up! Check out our new historical fiction list, Books that Take Will You Back and graphic novel list, Books that Get Graphic. As a reminder here are the lists that we already have:

Thriller/Mystery: Books to Read During the Day, With the Lights On
Romance/Relationship: Books About Mothers, Sisters and Lovers…of YA
Series: Books to Furiously Chain Read
YA Fiction: Books that Keep it Real
Adult Fiction/Classics: Books to Bring to a Coffee Shop
Science Fiction/Dystopian: Books to Keep Your Eyes On While Big Brother Keeps An Eye On You
Paranormal/Fantasy: Books That Give You Flight…Or Another Power

How do you all like these list titles? We think they’re pretty funny…but maybe we’re too busy laughing at our own jokes! And don’t hesitate to share these lists with your friends, teachers, librarians, media specialists and family!

Plus, don't miss Adult Books You Want to Read, reviews that we've recently featured on our site for adults, Bookreporter.com, that we think you'll love, too. Our new additions are THE ARRIVALS by Melissa Marr and DOC: A Memoir by Dwight Gooden.

For those of you with younger siblings or who's even scored a gig babysitting some little ones, check out this Kidsreads.com contest! In honor of the release of the first book in James Preller's new Scary Tales series, HOME SWEET HORROR --- where Liam Finn, his dad and sister have just moved into a new house, which is haunted by Bloody Mary --- five readers will have the opportunity to win a copy of this horror story. To enter, please fill out this form by Monday, August 12th at noon ET.

Let’s all cross our fingers that the worst of the heat is over…and when it’s not, don’t forget to drink lots of water. Hydration is key. And a good book always cures everything!

Happy reading!

--- Liz Kossnar (liz@bookreporter.com)
Special Feature: SINCE YOU ASKED... by Maurene Goo
SINCE YOU ASKED... by Maurene Goo (Fiction)
Fifteen-year-old Holly Kim is the copyeditor for her high school's newspaper. When she accidentally submits an article that rips everyone to shreds, she gets her own column and rants her way through the school year. Can she survive high school embarrassments, all while struggling to balance her family's traditional Korean values? Reviewed by Sally T., Teen Board member.

- Click here to read more about the book.
 
Click here to visit our special feature.

 
Now in Stores: IMPERFECT SPIRAL by Debbie Levy

IMPERFECT SPIRAL by Debbie Levy (Realistic Fiction)
Danielle Snyder's summer job as a babysitter takes a tragic turn when Humphrey, the five-year-old boy she's watching, runs in front of oncoming traffic to chase down his football. Wanting only to mourn Humphrey, the sweet kid she had a surprisingly strong friendship with, Danielle tries to avoid the world around her. It's time for Danielle to face reality, but when the truth brings so much pain, can she find a way to do right by Humphrey's memory and forgive herself for his death? Reviewed by Kate F., Teen Board member.

- Click here to read more about the book.
 

Click here to read a review.

 
Now in Stores: OCD LOVE STORY by Corey Ann Haydu
OCD LOVE STORY by Corey Ann Haydu (Social Issues)
When Bea meets Beck, she knows instantly that he’s her kind of crazy. Sweet, strong, kinda-messed-up Beck understands her like no one else can. He makes her feel almost normal. He makes her feel like she could fall in love again. Reviewed by Ashley Tran.


- Click here to read more about the book.
 
Click here to read a review.

 
Now in Stores: TRULY, MADLY, DEADLY by Hannah Jayne

TRULY, MADLY, DEADLY by Hannah Jayne (Mystery)
Sawyer Dodd is a star athlete, a straight-A student, and the envy of every other girl who wants to date Kevin Anderson. When Kevin dies in a tragic car crash, Sawyer is stunned. Then she opens her locker to find a note: You're welcome. Someone saw what he did to her. Someone knows that Sawyer and Kevin weren't the perfect couple they seemed to be. And that someone --- a killer --- is now shadowing Sawyer's every move... Reviewed by Caroline Osborn.

- Click here to read more about the book.

Click here to read a review.

 
Announcing the July-December Teen Board!!!
Teenreads.com is pleased to announce our second Teen Board! In their applications for a position on the Teen Board, these 27 teens have demonstrated their passion for reading and their readiness to share their opinions about books and authors. During their six-month term, they will be writing blogs, contributing book reviews, sharing feedback on Teenreads.com and participating in our monthly He Said/She Said feature. Click on each Teen Board member's name to visit their Contributor Page where you can read a longer profile and get to know a bit more about them.

And keep a look out for additional features driven by the Teen Board on Teenreads.com --- more are coming soon!
 
Click here to read the Teen Board's profile.

 
"He Said/She Said" Feature: ASYLUM by Madeleine Roux
Stereotypically, girl books are pink, have a girl on the cover and are FILLED with sickeningly sweet romance. Boy books, on the other hand, are darker, have blood dripping or something more creepy on the cover and there are NO girls to be found. But we all know this isn't true, right? There are books that boys AND girls love!!! Teenreads.com's “He Said/She Said” feature aims to highlight a book each month to discuss its guy and girl appeal. Each month, there will first be a cover survey to ask YOU what you think of the cover. After that, we'll reveal the results of the poll along with the reader responses from a Teen Board boy and a Teen Board girl --- but they never saw the cover, title or author's name!

In our July "He Said/She Said" feature, we're asked YOU if you think ASYLUM by Madeleine Roux looks like a boy book, a girl book or both based on its cover. The results are in!

- Click here to visit our "He Said/She Said" feature for TANDEM by Anna Jarzab.

- Click here to visit our "He Said/She Said" feature for THE PARADOX OF VERTICAL FLIGHT by Emil Ostrovski.
 
Click here to visit our "He Said/She Said" feature for ASYLUM by Madeleine Roux.

 
Ultimate Reading List --- Our Last Two Genre Lists: Historical Fiction and Graphic Novels

One of our goals each month is to inspire you to read...and to keep reading. We have found that required reading lists for school --- especially summer reading lists --- are not exactly inspiring. Thus, we have created what we think is the Ultimate Teen Reading List: over 400 titles that we believe are perfect choices for reading and discussing. We've updated the feature with books that have released in the past year. They include a mixture of fiction and nonfiction, plus graphic novels and manga titles.

And now, we're introducing two more new genre lists to add to the group! You asked for them, and we listened! Since our Ultimate Reading List is so long, we wanted to help you all find reads by genre to help you find the right book on our list for you!

- Click here to visit our historical fiction list, Books that Will Take You Back

- Click here to visit our graphic novel list, Books that Get Graphic

- Click here to visit our mystery and thriller list, Books to Read During the Day, With the Light On

- Click here to visit our romance and family list, Books About Mothers, Sisters and Lovers…of YA

- Click here to visit our series list, Books to Furiously Chain Read

- Click here to visit our science fiction and dystopian list, Books to Keep Your Eyes on While Big Brother Keeps an Eye on You.

- Click here to visit our fantasy and paranormal list, Books That Give You Flight...Or Another Power.

- Click here to visit our YA fiction list, Books that Keep it Real

- Click here to visit our adult fiction and classics list, Books to Bring to a Coffee Shop.

Click here to see our updated Ultimate Reading List for teens.


 
From the Teenreads.com Blog

Here is a selection of blog posts we've recently run on Teenreads.com!

Emily Hoenig from The Book Report Network team continues to hilariously break down the classics she read in high school in "Real Talk," in her blog series, "Telling It How It Is: Classics Edition." In addition to her first post about THE GREAT GATSBY, LORD OF THE FLIES by William Golding, GREAT EXPECTATIONS by Charles Dickens, FAHRENHEIT 451 by Ray Bradbury and now you can read Emily's take on the most classic story of angst, J.D. Salinger's THE CATCHER IN THE RYE. Stop by our blog on Friday to read the "Telling it How it Is: Classics Edition" for FRANKENSTEIN by Mary Shelley.

One of our lovely summer interns, Kate, felt inspired to give you all some tips on how to navigate your first internship... especially about how be a commuting intern in New York City! Read her blog post, "Intern in the City."

Our Teen Board continues to contribute to our blog! In "Problems of a Teen Bookworm" Kate F. vents about the pitfalls of the bookworm lifestyle. And don't forget to check out the new Teen Board's list of favorite quotations here.

Maggie Tokuda-Hall is the Children's Department Director for Books Inc., a group of independent bookstores in the San Francisco Bay Area. In this "Booksellering: It’s a Verb," she gives us the inside scoop on a term you may not have heard of before, but is super important for all book lovers.

Have you seen the movie adaptation of Judy Blume's TIGER EYES? Our intern Carla did and she began to reminisce about reading Judy Blume. This became her blog post, "Starry Eyes for TIGER EYES."

- Click here to read Teen Board blog posts.

Click here to read our blog.

 
Other Reviews
AWAKEN by Meg Cabot (Mythology)
Seventeen-year-old Pierce knew by accepting the love of John, she'd be forced to live forever the Underworld. The sacrifice seemed worth it, though, because it meant she could be with the boy she loves. But now her happiness and safety are threatened. If the balance between life and death isn't fixed, both the Underworld and Pierce's home back on earth will be wiped away. But to do so, someone has to die. Reviewed by Caroline Osborn.

THE COUNTERFEIT FAMILY TREE OF VEE CRAWFORD-WONG by L. Tam Holland (Realistic Fiction)
When Vee Crawford-Wong’s history teacher assigns an essay on his family history, Vee knows he’s in trouble. His parents --- Chinese-born dad and Texas-bred Mom --- are mysteriously and stubbornly close-lipped about his ancestors. So, he makes it all up and turns in the assignment. And then everything falls apart. Reviewed by Carly Silver.

THIS IS W.A.R. by Lisa Roecker and Laura Roecker (Mystery)
Everyone at Hawthorne Lake Country Club saw Willa Ames-Rowan climb into a boat with James Gregory, the Club’s heir apparent. And everyone at Hawthorne Lake Country Club watched him return. Alone. They all know he killed her. But none of them will say a word. The Gregory family is very, very good at making problems go away. Reviewed by Jennifer B., Teen Board member.

THE HEARTBREAK MESSENGER by Alexander Vance (Romantic Comedy)
Twelve-year-old Quentin never asked to be the Heartbreak Messenger. The valuable communication service he offers is simple: He delivers breakup messages. At first, Quentin’s entrepreneurial brainchild is surprisingly successful, which is great, because he suspects his mom, who works as a car mechanic, is worried about money. But as he interacts with clients, message recipients, and his best friend, Abigail, it doesn’t take long for him to wonder if his own heart will remain intact. Reviewed by Benjamin Boche.

CONTAMINATED by Em Garner (Dystopian)
After the Contamination - an epidemic caused by the super-trendy diet drink SlimPro that turned ordinary citizens into shambling creatures unable to control their violent impulses - the government rounded up the "Connies" to protect the remaining population. Gritty and grabbing, CONTAMINATED is a harrowing, emotionally charged dystopic venture into YA from a well-known and respected writer of women's fiction. Reviewed by Samantha E., Teen Board member.

DIRTY LITTLE SECRET by Jennifer Echols (Realistic Fiction)
There are too many secrets in 18-year-old Bailey’s life. Not just the obvious one: that she told her grandfather she was going on a date and instead is playing fiddle in a Nashville bar. Bailey’s parents don’t want her playing any gigs at all, but when they leave her with her grandfather for the summer, he lands her a music job that’s beneath the radar, playing old country songs in cheesy costumes at a local mall. That’s where she meets Sam... Reviewed by Harman K., Teen Board member.

OF BEAST AND BEAUTY by Stacey Jay (Fantasy)
In the domed city of Yuan, the blind Princess Isra, a Smooth Skin, is raised to be a human sacrifice whose death will ensure her city’s vitality. In the desert outside Yuan, Gem, a mutant beast, fights to save his people, the Monstrous, from starvation. Neither dreams that together, they could return balance to both their worlds. Reviewed by Harman K., Teen Board member.

WHEN YOU WERE HERE by Daisy Whitney (Social Issues)
Danny's mother lost her five-year battle with cancer three weeks before his graduation --- the one day that she was hanging on to see. When he gets a letter from his mom's property manager in Tokyo, where she had been going for treatment, it shows a side of a side of his mother he never knew. So, with no other sense of direction, Danny travels to Tokyo to connect with his mother's memory and make sense of her final months. Reviewed by Samantha W., Teen Board member.

THE TWICE LOST by Sarah Porter (Romantic/Fantasy)
Mermaids have been sinking ships and drowning humans for centuries, and now the government is determined to put an end to the problem by slaughtering them. Luce becomes their number-one target. As she flees, she finds hundreds of mermaids living in exile who then becomethe Twice Lost Army under her rule --- because this is war. Reviewed by Lexibex V., Teen Board member.

RIGHT OF WAY by Lauren Barnholdt (Romance)
Here are Peyton and Jace, broken up but thrown together on a road trip. One of them is lying about the destination. One of them is pretending not to be leaving something behind. And neither of them is prepared for what’s coming on the road ahead… Reviewed by Amanda P., Teen Board member.

A MATTER OF DAYS by Amber Kizer (Dystopian)
On Day 56 of the pandemic called BluStar, 16-year-old Nadia's mother dies, leaving her responsible for her younger brother Rabbit. They secretly received antivirus vaccines from their uncle, but most people weren't as lucky. Their deceased father taught them to adapt and survive whatever comes their way. That's their plan as they trek from Seattle to their grandfather's survivalist compound in West Virginia. But what if no one is there to meet them? Reviewed by Dave Franklin.
 
Around the Web

Do you follow us on Facebook or Twitter? If you do, you'll know that we LOVE to share fun, YA-related articles with you from other sources around the web. Pictures of authors' work spaces? The movie trailer to the next YA movie adaptation? List of banned books? Check them out here!

Watch: New Trailer For 'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire' Enters The District (Indiewire)

PW KidsCast: A Conversation with Holly Black (Publishers Weekly)

16 Fancy Literary Techniques Explained By Disney (Buzzfeed)

'Harry Potter' Quotes: 10 Comforting Words Of Wisdom From Albus Dumbledore (Huffington Post)

The Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge (Going Down Swinging)

Then Again, Maybe Hollywood Will: 5 YA Novels That Should Be Movies (Word and Film)

Adult Books You Want to Read
Throughout the year, we feature books from Bookreporter.com, our site for adult readers, that we think will have appeal to teen audiences.

Here are our latest featured titles:

THE ARRIVALS by Melissa Marr (Fantasy)
Chloe walks into a bar and blows five years of sobriety. When she wakes, she finds herself in an unfamiliar world, The Wasteland. She discovers that people from all times and places have also arrived there, including a brother and sister from the Wild West, a prohibition bootlegger, a one-time hippie, a mentally unbalanced 1950s housewife, and a former carnival artist. None know why they arrived there --- or if there is a way out of a world populated by monsters and filled with corruption. Reviewed by Sarah Rachel Egelman.

DOC: A Memoir by Dwight Gooden (Memoir)
With fresh and sober eyes, legendary pitcher Dwight Gooden shares the most intimate moments of his successes and failures, from endless self-destructive drug binges to three World Series rings. He also offers a unique perspective on Yankees owner and stalwart supporter George Steinbrenner and some of the greatest baseball players of all time. Reviewed by Ron Kaplan.
 
This Month's Poll

Poll

Time to challenge yourself! How many books are you going to read this summer???

Five or less
6-10
11-15
16-20
21-30
31-40
More than 40

-Click here to answer the poll.

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