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Early June

Teenreads.com
Newsletter
June 13, 2014


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 Teenreads Goes a Little (The Fault in Our) STAR(s)-Crazy

Hi Teenreaders!

I have a confession: last week, I was psyched to attend “The Night Before Our Stars” --- the Thursday night screening of The Fault in Our Stars followed by a live interview with the cast --- but I was nervous, too. Why? Because I was seeing it alone. I have friends who love going to the movie theater by themselves --- they grab a bucket of popcorn and get lost in a film without a second thought --- but I’ve never been one of them.

Would I feel left out when all of the teens were screaming about John Green and Shailene Woodley with their friends, or when other viewers were passing boxes of tissues back and forth with their friends or even their moms? Would I lose some sense of catharsis since I wouldn’t have anyone to discuss this incredibly moving story with once it finished?

Luckily, my worries quickly proved to be baseless --- even though I wasn’t sitting next to my best friend, this was one of the most “community” based movie experiences I’ve ever been to. About half of the audience was wearing THE FAULT IN OUR STARS-themed t-shirts, and rather than talking about school or friends or any other topic, everyone was talking about the movie before it began. Here were some favorite quotes:

--- One girl yelling at her friend, “Did you just say Matt Wolff? It’s Nat Wolff! How could you?"

--- One teen whipping out two boxes of tissues from her purse and saying, “I brought two since we’ll each definitely need our own.”

--- After a teen boy wearing a TFIOS t-shirt walked down the aisle, one girl not-so-subtlety whispering to a friend, “Oh my God did you see him? There was a totally cute fanboy! I wonder if he’s dating someone.”

While the pre-movie buzz was amazing, I actually felt the most connected to the audience between the movie screening and the start of the interview with John Green and the actors, when everyone attending “The Night Before Our Stars” was invited to tweet their questions to the cast at #askTFIOS. During these few minutes, I searched the hashtag and continually refreshed Twitter on my phone, and each time I saw “38 new notifications.” “90 new notifications.” “73 new notifications.” It made me realize that not only was everyone in the room a diehard fan of THE FAULT IN OUR STARS, but the story --- both in book and film version --- had affected thousands of people around the country (and globe, too).

Watching my Twitter feed update by hundreds of tweets at a time while being surrounded by dozens of squirming, New York-based fans (“when will the interview start???”), I felt like a part of something, on both a large and small scale. It didn’t matter that I came alone, because when it came to passion for the story and excitement about it being shared through a new medium, I wasn’t alone at all.

And my thoughts on the movie itself? I LOVED it. I thought that the screenwriters did a particularly good job of showing Hazel’s fear of being a “grenade,” even though she only said the word once in the film. While Hazel rarely talked about it directly, her need to know that people’s loved ones could move on after they passed away was so palpable, and Shailene did a great job of capturing that feeling. Of course Hazel’s and Gus’s relationship made me swoon --- their closeness built gradually and felt so real --- and I loved the way that the film handled phone and email communication. Any teen --- and even twentysomethings like me --- can relate to the anticipatory rush that comes with texting a crush, and the text bubbles brought a light-hearted, sweet touch to a film that deals with a lot of heavy topics.

And the interview after the movie? While it felt a bit awkward at points, I loved seeing Shailene cry (does that sound sadistic?). It made me understand how close the actors were to their characters, and also see why John Green purportedly cried so much on set --- all of the characters were “his.” I was also impressed that the teens in the support group scene were real cancer survivors, which I hadn’t heard before.

There are a number of articles about the film and what its success means for YA readers and the movie industry, so I suggest a date with Google if you’re interested! One quick one that I particularly like, though, is from IF I STAY author Gayle Foreman’s Tumblr, where, when discussing The Fault in Our Stars’ high box office numbers, she tells YA fans, “You guys just changed Hollywood…Go, you!" By the way, IF I STAY has been adapted to a movie as well and it will be in theatres on August 22nd. We will have more about that in the weeks to come!

And lastly --- because while I love THE FAULT IN OUR STARS, I realize that there are many YA books out there that deserve legions of readers --- here’s a quick shout-out to a couple I finished, recently. They’re both coming out in the fall, but I wanted to give an early heads up!

1) - EGG AND SPOON by Gregory Maguire (September) - You probably know Gregory from his bestselling book WICKED (and, you know, that Broadway musical you might have heard of), but did you know that he writes YA, too? His latest book, EGG AND SPOON, comes out in September and follows two very different girls who trade places in an enchanted Russia --- along with a mysterious egg, the child-munching yet shockingly lovable Baba Yaga and the mythological firebird. This book reminded me of a stunning fairy tale tinged with the rich description and deeply rendered characters of 19th century Russian literature. It swallows you whole, and is a must-read for those who like to incredibly sensory, all-encompassing reading experiences. I’ll admit it was made even better since I met Gregory at a recent publishing conference, and got to hear him sing one of Baba Yaga’s songs from the book…priceless.

2) GLORY O’BRIEN’S HISTORY OF THE FUTURE by A.S. King (October) – A.S. King is huge in the YA world for books like REALITY BOY and PLEASE IGNORE VERA DIETZ, and this book certainly held up to the buzz. Glory and her friend Ellie --- who lives in a commune across the street --- mix a decomposed dead bat with beer one night and drink it, and the next day, everything changes; whenever Glory looks someone in the eye, she sees transmissions about their pasts --- and the future. I was completely captivated by Glory’s voice and personal story (her photographer mother committed suicide when she was four, and she’s learning more about her by exploring her mother’s darkroom and taking her own pictures), as well as her visions of a very terrifying, sexist future. Despite the unusual premise, this book felt so real, and I couldn’t stop reading it. I can see fans of YA contemporary and realistic fiction gobbling this one up.

That’s all for now, and enjoy the rest of the newsletter! Reminder: I love to hear from you with questions and/or comments, so if you’re dying to talk about The Fault in Our Stars or a great book you just read, send me an email! And if you're wondering about the photos --- the one on the top left is is from the #TFIOS panel at BookExpo America a couple of weeks ago, and the second is a shot of the screen from The Night Before Our Stars.

--- Shara Zaval (shara@bookreporter.com)
 

Teenreads.com's Eighth Annual Beach Bag Giveaway

It's time to think about summer reading --- and we're not talking about the list of books you'll be receiving for Required Summer Reading from school. We're talking about the kinds of books that you're glad you now have time to kick back with and enjoy. The way we see it, it wouldn't be summer without sun, surf and great reading. You supply the beach chair, and we'll provide the fantastic reads in our Eighth Annual Teenreads.com Beach Bag of Books Feature and Contest. From now through Friday, July 25th at noon ET, five lucky readers will win a selection of the featured books.

This year's featured Beach Bag of Books titles include (scroll down to read more about each book):

AMITY by Micol Ostow
BRUTAL YOUTH by Anthony Breznican
CATCH A FALLING STAR by Kim Culbertson
DO YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE? by Megan Kaye
THE FASHION BOOK by various editors
THE LOST by Sarah Beth Durst
OF MONSTERS AND MADNESS by Jessica Verday
ON THE FENCE by Kasie West
QUARANTINE #1: The Loners by Lex Thomas
SINNER (Companion book to the Shiver Trilogy series) by Maggie Stiefvater
TABULA RASA by Kristen Lippert-Martin

 

 

 

Click here to enter our Beach Bag of Books Contest!

 
Giveaway: MY LAST KISS by Bethany Neal

There are tons of books about first kisses, but MY LAST KISS by Bethany Neal explores the opposite --- the last kiss of Cassidy's life, which happened at her 17th birthday party --- and with someone other than her amazing boyfriend. To be one of 15 lucky readers to win a copy of MY LAST KISS, enter the contest by Tuesday, August 5th at noon ET.

More about MY LAST KISS:

Cassidy Haines remembers her first kiss vividly. It was on the old covered bridge the summer before her freshman year with her boyfriend of three years, Ethan Keys. But her last kiss --- the one she shared with someone at her 17th birthday party the night she died --- is a blur. Cassidy is trapped in the living world, not only mourning the loss of her human body, but left with the grim suspicion that her untimely death wasn’t a suicide as everyone assumes. She can’t remember anything from the weeks leading up to her birthday and she’s worried that she may have betrayed her boyfriend. If Cassidy is to uncover the truth about that fateful night and make amends with the only boy she’ll ever love, she must face her past and all the decisions she made --- good and bad --- that led to her last kiss.


Click here to read the excerpt.

Click here to enter the contest!

 
Special Feature: THE LOST by Sarah Beth Durst
Have you ever wondered what happened to that lost pearl earring, or your other sock? What about those play tickets that you know you had in your back pocket? According to award-winning author Sarah Beth Durst, they’re all floating around in Lost, a mysterious desert town that is filled with lost glasses, keys and people --- people who can’t escape until they’ve figured out what they’re missing.

Sarah Beth’s new book, THE LOST, follows a young woman named Lauren who ends up in this dusty place and needs to figure out how to get back home. In our special feature, we have a review of THE LOST, an excerpt from the book and an interview with Sarah Beth, where she talks about the inspiration for the book, something she's lost and the next book in the series.

Click here to read the interview.
Click here to read the excerpt.
Click here to read the review.
Special Feature: DON'T CALL ME BABY by Gwendolyn Heasley
Blogs are fantastic --- anyone can write one, and they can take readers into the worlds of fashion, cooking, music, middle grade novels... pretty much anything a person could ever want to know. But what if there was a blog about you that spared no details --- a blog that shared everything from your first words to your school troubles, and, if you're a girl, even talked about your first period?!

That's what Imogene, the protagonist in DON'T CALL ME BABY by Gwendolyn Heasley, has to contend with every day --- her mom is a famous blogger, and Imogene is her favorite, er, only, subject. When Imogene is forced to start her own blog as part of a school project, she is reluctant to put even more of her life in cyberspace. However, she realizes that this might be the chance she's been waiting for --- the chance to define herself for the first time.


Click here to read the newly added interview.
Click here to read the excerpt.
Click here to read the review.
Click here to watch the book trailer.
Teen Board

Thanks to everyone who applied to join the July-December 2014 Teen Board! You'll have heard from us by now whether you made it through to Round Two.


And of course, we can't forget to mention what our CURRENT Teen Board is up to!

--- Our June Teen Board Question: With THE FAULT IN OUR STARS movie coming out, we asked our Teen Board members which book they would like to see adapted into a movie and why. Answers ranged from FANGIRL, where Aliza M. "would love to see the characters come to life", to DAUGHTER OF SMOKE AND BONE, but for Pranshu A., "only if it stayed true to the book." Read all the Teen Board's answers here!

--- Teen Board Blog posts: Katherina T. taught us how to start reading fanfiction, and Rachel B. made a WWII round-up in honor of D-Day.

--- Reviews: We have lots of Teen Board reviews this month! Kate F. liked RUIN AND RISING, because it "wraps up The Grisha Trilogy perfectly," and Emily P. called THE GIRL WHO NEVER WAS "a promising first book in a fantasy series."

NEW! Follow us on Tumblr

Teenreads is excited to announce that we recently joined the Tumblrverse! Our Tumblr handle is teenreadsdotcom and you can follow us for posts on all things YA, like interviews, quotes, and YA news. Here are some recent posts and reblogs:

  • This beautiful quote from Evangeline Earle's op-ed on her sister, Esther, who inspired THE FAULT IN OUR STARS
  • We found a great list of diverse YA titles that are out or about to come out this year
  • Our most recent Side By Side all about Serial Killers

And of course, we want to follow YOU, too! Send us your Tumblr handle here and we'll follow you back. We can't wait to see what you post!

Click here to follow our Tumblr!

 
June's Cool and New Roundup
Our June roundup includes SAY WHAT YOU WILL by Cammie McGovern, which follows the friendship and budding romance between a girl with cerebral palsy and a boy with OCD; RUIN AND RISING, the much-anticipated conclusion of Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha Trilogy that features Alina as she faces The Darkling one last time; and BREAKING FREE: True Stories of Girls Who Escaped Modern Slavery by Abby Sher, which explores the global issue of human sex trafficking from a survivor's point of view.

Among the paperback titles released this month, we have CHARM & STRANGE by Stephanie Kuehn, the story of a lonely teenager with a troubled past at war with himself; WICKEDPEDIA by Chris Van Etten, a new installment in the Point Horror series that features two boys discover a dark, murderous side to Wikipedia; and STRANGE FRUIT VOLUME 1 by Joel Christian Gill, an anthology of lesser known stories from African American history.
Click here to sea June's Cool and New roundup!

 
Books on Screen
It's finally June, and that means on June 6th it's time to grab the tissues and go see the afore-mentioned The Fault In Our Stars! Based on John Green's mega-popular bestseller, this is definitely the film YA fans are going to be talking about all summer. Whether you've read the book or not, prepare to get a little misty eyed watching the story of Hazel and Gus play out on the big screen. Also in theaters this month is the highly anticipated sequel, How to Train Your Dragon 2, based on the series by Cressida Cowell.
Click here to read Books on Screen!

 
Now in Stores: THE GLASS SENTENCE

THE GLASS SENTENCE by S. E. Grove (Fiction)

She has only seen the world through maps. She had no idea they were so dangerous.

Boston, 1891. Sophia Tims comes from a family of explorers and cartologers who, for generations, have been traveling and mapping the New World—a world changed by the Great Disruption of 1799, when all the continents were flung into different time periods. Eight years ago, her parents left her with her uncle Shadrack, the foremost cartologer in Boston, and went on an urgent mission. They never returned. Life with her brilliant, absent-minded, adored uncle has taught Sophia to take care of herself.

Then Shadrack is kidnapped. And Sophia, who has rarely been outside of Boston, is the only one who can search for him. Together with Theo, a refugee from the West, she travels over rough terrain and uncharted ocean, encounters pirates and traders, and relies on a combination of Shadrack’s maps, common sense, and her own slantwise powers of observation. But even as Sophia and Theo try to save Shadrack’s life, they are in danger of losing their own.

The Glass Sentence plunges readers into a time and place they will not want to leave, and introduces them to a heroine and hero they will take to their hearts. It is a remarkable debut.
Click here to learn more about the book.

Click here to learn more about the book.

Click here to read the review!

 
REAL TALK Publishing with Barbara Marcus, President and Publisher of Random House's Children's Division --- Part 3!
We know you love to read, but have you ever considered working with books as a career? If so, there are tons of options to explore. With this feature, we'll introduce you to book editors, librarians, booksellers, children's literature professors, book cover designers, publicists, professional reviewers and more. Through interviews, guest posts and sometimes sneak peeks inside their offices, we'll take you into their worlds so you can learn about the book industry.

For our third REAL TALK Publishing feature, we interviewed Barbara Marcus, the President and Publisher of Random House's Children's Division. As the head of the division, Barbara handles ALL things children's books, but she has a special place in her heart for marketing. In fact, she did the marketing campaigns for the Harry Potter series and helped with R.J. Palacio's modern classic, WONDER!

We just posted the final part of our interview, where Barbara talks about marketing, gives some overall career advice and discusses the best adult books she's recently read. If you missed Part 1 --- where Barbara reveals the part of her job that makes her "heart sing" and how she manages to keep track of all things Random House Children's --- or Part 2, where Barbara talks about working on HARRY POTTER and WONDER, make sure to check those out, too!
Check out our REAL TALK Publishing interview with Barbara Marcus here!

 
Side by Side: Serial Killers
There are lots of things that give us nightmares --- vampires creeping in the middle of the night to suck our blood, an ocean full of sharks with no boats in sight or forgetting to set the alarm and missing AP exams or a flight to Tahiti. What’s really scary, though? Killers. Serial killers, to be exact.

That’s why we talked to S.E. Green and Kim Derting --- two serial killer experts --- for our latest side by side. In S.E. Greens book KILLER INSTINCT, Lane works at a local animal hospital, practices martial arts…and is obsessed with tracking down serial killers and delivering justice when the law fails. When one comes to her home town, though, can she catch him before he hurts someone she loves…and make sure she doesn’t cross the line from vigilantism to crime? In Kim Derting’s Body Finder series, Violet can sense people who have been murdered, and the imprints they leave on their killers. She had to use her power to track down a local serial killer in THE BODY FINDER, and in the newest book in the series --- DEAD SILENCE --- one of the people closest to Violet is a suspect in a horrific murder, and she has to find out who really did it.

Read below to find out the scariest things S.E. Green and Kim Derting learned in their research, the inspiration for their stories, and the alternate identities they would have chosen in high school.
Click here to read our Side by Side feature!

 
The Teenreads Blog

See below for our newest blog posts! And remember, if you want to participate in our Class Notes section, email me here! It may be summer, but we know that tons of libraries keep their book groups going strong throughout the warmer months. Here is our first Class Notes post, which we posted in May.

 

WisCon38 Takes on YA -

How to Start Reading Fanfiction --- Teen Board member Katherina T. explains why she loves fan fiction, gives a sneak peek at popular fan fiction lingo and, best of all, shares links to her favorite fan fiction and wattpad.com stories.

Honoring D-Day's 70th Anniversary - WWII Roundup --- To honor the 70th anniversary of D-Day --- the day that Allied troops began the invasion of German-occupied Western Europe during WWII --- Teen Board member Rachel B. rounded up some of her favorite WWII YA books.

Blog Tour - THE GIRL WHO NEVER WAS --- Skylar Dorset, the author of THE GIRL WHO NEVER WAS, discusses the ways that she transformed the city where she lived into a place bursting with supernatural creatures and magical objects.

Why I Write About Characters with Disabilities --- Guest Post by Cammie McGovern --- Cammie McGovern explains why she decided to write about teens with disabilities --- and what she hopes readers will take away from it.

Click here to read our blog!

 
Check Out Our Latest Reviews!

NEW! GIRLS LIKE US by Gail Giles (Fiction)

Quincy and Biddy are both graduates of their high school’s special ed program, but they couldn’t be more different: suspicious Quincy faces the world with her fists up, while gentle Biddy is frightened to step outside her front door. When they’re thrown together as roommates in their first "real world" apartment, it initially seems to be an uneasy fit. But as Biddy’s past resurfaces and Quincy faces a harrowing experience that no one should have to go through alone, the two of them realize that they might have more in common than they thought — and more important, that they might be able to help each other move forward. Reviewed by Corinne Fox.

NEW! ALLIES AND ASSASSINS by Justin Somper (Fiction)

Prince Anders, the ruler of Archenfield, has been murdered, leaving his younger brother, Jared, to ascend the throne. Sixteen-year-old Jared feels unprepared to rule the kingdom and its powerful and dangerous court, yet he knows he can rely on the 12 officers of the court to advise him. He also knows he can just as easily be at their mercy --- especially when it appears that one of them may be responsible for his brother's death. Unable to trust anyone, Jared takes it upon himself to hunt down his brother's killer --- but the killer may be hunting him, as well. Reviewed by Benjamin Boche.

NEW! HEXED by Michelle Krys (Fiction)

Suddenly forced into a centuries-old war between witches and sorcerers, Indie's about to uncover the many dark truths about her life --- and a future unlike any she ever imagined on top of the cheer pyramid. Reviewed by Sheena Kowalski.

NEW! THE MERCILESS by Danielle Vega (Horror)

When Sofia befriended Riley, Grace and Alexis on her first day at school, she admired them. They said they wanted to save Brooklyn Stevens. Sofia didn’t realize they believed Brooklyn was possessed. Now, Riley and the girls are performing an exorcism on Brooklyn --- but their idea of an exorcism is closer to torture than salvation. All Sofia wants is to get out of this house. But there is no way out. Sofia can’t go against the other girls...unless she wants to be next... Reviewed by Corinne Fox.

NEW! GUY IN REAL LIFE by Steve Brezenoff (Fiction)

It is Labor Day weekend in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and boy and girl collide on a dark street at 2:30 in the morning: Lesh, who wears black, listens to metal and plays MMOs; and Svetlana, who embroiders her skirts, listens to Björk and Berlioz and dungeon masters her own RPG. They should pick themselves up, continue on their way and never talk to each other again. But they don't. Reviewed by Brianna Robinson.

NEW! THE BOOK OF DAVID by Anonymous (Fiction)

The author of this fictional diary began writing for a class assignment, but soon it became much more to him. As the star player of his high school football team, he faces a lot of pressure and expectation. Not to mention the secret that he’s harboring inside. The secret that could change everything. And as David quickly learns, nothing stays secret forever. Reviewed by Cadyn D., Teen Board Member.

NEW! THEY CALLED THEMSELVES THE KKK by Susan Campbell Bartoletti (Fiction)

This is the story of how a secret terrorist group took root in America’s democracy. Filled with chilling and vivid personal accounts unearthed from oral histories, congressional documents and diaries, this account from Newbery Honor-winning author Susan Campbell Bartoletti is a book to read and remember. Reviewed by Anita Lock.

NEW! WHEN MR. DOG BITES by Brian Conaghan (Fiction)

All Dylan Mint has ever wanted is to keep his Tourette’s in check and live life as a “normal” teenager. The swearing, the tics, the howling “dog” that escapes when things are at their worst --- nothing about Tourette’s makes it easy. But a routine hospital visit changes everything --- Dylan overhears that he's going to die. In an attempt to claim the life he’s always wanted, he decides to grant himself parting wishes, or “Cool Things To Do Before I Cack It”. Reviewed by Pranshu A., Teen Board Member.

NEW! CURSES AND SMOKE: A Novel of Pompeii by Vicky Alvear Shecter (Young Adult Historical Fiction)

Tag is a medical slave, doomed to spend his life healing his master's injured gladiators. Lucia is the daughter of Tag's owner, doomed by her father's greed to marry a much older Roman man. When the two childhood friends reconnect, each with their own longings, they fall passionately in love. But as they plot their escape from the city, an earthquake shakes Pompeii, in the first sign of the chaos to come. Will they be able to find each other again before the volcano destroys their whole world? Reviewed by Mary M., Teen Board Member.

NEW! THE GIRL WHO NEVER WAS: Otherworld, Book One by Skylar Dorset (Fantasy)

In Selkie's family, you don't celebrate birthdays. You don't talk about birthdays. And you never, ever reveal your birth date. The instant Selkie blurts out the truth to Ben in the middle of Boston Common, her whole world shatters. Because her life has been nothing but a lie --- an elaborate enchantment meant to conceal the truth: Selkie is a half-faerie princess. And her mother wants her dead. Reviewed by Emily P., Teen Board Member.

NEW! OBLIVION by Sasha Dawn (Fiction)

One year ago, Callie was found in an abandoned apartment, scrawling words on the wall: "I KILLED HIM. His blood is on my hands. His heart is in my soul. I KILLED HIM." But she remembers nothing of that night or of the previous 36 hours. All she knows is that her father, the reverend at the Church of the Holy Promise, is missing, as is Hannah, a young girl from the parish. Their disappearances have to be connected and Callie knows that her father was not a righteous man. Reviewed by Sabrina Abballe.


NEW! THE DROWNING by Rachel Ward (Fiction)

When Carl opens his eyes on the banks of a lake, his brother is being zipped into a body bag. What happened in the water? He can't remember And when he glimpses A beautiful girl he thinks he recognises, she runs away. Suddenly he knows he must find her --- because together they must face the truth before it drowns them. Reviewed by Alison S., Teen Board Member.

NEW! REVOLUTION (The Sixties Trilogy) by Deborah Wiles (Historical Fiction)

It's 1964, and Sunny's town is being invaded. Or at least that's what the adults of Greenwood, Mississippi are saying. All Sunny knows is that people from up north are coming to help people register to vote. They're calling it Freedom Summer. Meanwhile, Sunny can't help but feel like her house is being invaded, too. She has a new stepmother, a new brother and a new sister crowding her life, giving her little room to breathe. And things get even trickier when Sunny and her brother are caught sneaking into the local swimming pool -- where they bump into a mystery boy whose life is going to become tangled up in theirs. Reviewed by Aimee Rogers.

NEW! BREAKING FREE: True Stories of Girls Who Escaped Modern Slavery by Abby Sher (Nonfiction)

BREAKING FREE: True Stories of Girls Who Escaped Modern Slavery explores the global issue of human sex trafficking from a survivor's point of view. It recounts the harrowing stories of three courageous women --- Somaly Mam, Minh Dang and Maria Suarez --- who were all forced into sexual slavery as children. After escaping their captors, these three women could easily have become voiceless victims, lost to the horrors of their own histories; instead, they have each become leading advocates and activists in the anti-trafficking movement. Reviewed by Sabrina Abballe.

NEW! RUIN AND RISING by Leigh Bardugo (Fantasy)

The Darkling rules Ravka from his shadow throne. Now the nation's fate rests with a broken Sun Summoner, a disgraced tracker and the shattered remnants of an army. Alina must submit to the dubious protection of those who worship her. But as she begins to unravel the Darkling's secrets, she reveals a past that will forever alter her understanding. Kate F., Teen Board Member.

NEW! HUNGRY by H. A. Swain (Young Adult Dystopian Fiction)

In Thalia’s world, there is no more food and no need for food, as everyone takes medication to ward off hunger. Her parents both work for the company that developed the drugs society consumes to quell any food cravings, and they live a life of privilege as a result. When Thalia meets a boy who is part of an underground movement to bring food back, she realizes that there is an entire world outside her own. She also starts to feel hunger, and so does the boy. Are the meds no longer working? Together, they set out to find the only thing that will quell their hunger: real food. Reviewed by Thanh Tu N., Teen Board Member.

NEW! CALL ME BY MY NAME by John Ed Bradley (Fiction)

Growing up in Louisiana in the late 1960s, Tater Henry has experienced a lot of prejudice. His town is slow to desegregate and slower still to leave behind deep-seated prejudice. Despite the town’s sensibilities, Rodney Boulett and his twin sister Angie befriend Tater, and as their friendship grows stronger, Tater and Rodney become an unstoppable force on the football field. That is, until Rodney sees Tater and Angie growing closer, too, and Rodney’s world is turned upside down. Teammates, best friends --- Rodney’s world is threatened by a hate he did not know was inside of him. As the town learns to accept notions like a black quarterback, some changes may be too difficult to accept. Reviewed by Cheritta J., Teen Board Member.

NEW! SAY WHAT YOU WILL by Cammie McGovern (Fiction)

Born with cerebral palsy, Amy can't walk without a walker, talk without a voice box or even fully control her facial expressions. Plagued by obsessive-compulsive disorder, Matthew is consumed with repeated thoughts, neurotic rituals and crippling fear. Both in desperate need of someone to help them reach out to the world, Amy and Matthew are more alike than either ever realized. Reviewed by Lucy P., Teen Board Member.

NEW! THE SECRETS OF TREE TAYLOR by Dandi Daley Mackall (Young Adult)

Thirteen-year-old Tree Taylor has two goals for the summer of '63: 1. Experience her first real kiss. A kiss delivered by a boy. A boy who is not related to her. A kiss worth writing about. 2. Become a famous writer. (Or, at least, write an investigative article that will land her the freshman spot on the Blue and Gold staff.) So when a gunshot is fired right across the street, Tree knows this is the big story she's been waiting for. But the more she goes digging, the more secrets she uncovers, and soon she begins to wonder: When is it important to expose the truth? And when is it right to keep a secret? Reviewed by Aliza M., Teen Board Member.

NEW! PUSHING THE LIMITS by Katie McGarry (Young Adult Romance)

No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with "freaky" scars on her arms. Even Echo can't remember the whole truth. But when Noah Hutchins --- the smoking-hot, girl-using, loner in the black leather jacket --- explodes into her life with his surprising understanding, Echo's world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she'll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again. Reviewed by Sara J., Teen Board Member

NEW! GUARDIAN (Proxy) by Alex London (Young Adult Science Fiction)

In the new world led by the Rebooters, former Proxy Syd is the figurehead of the Revolution, beloved by some and hated by others. Liam, a seventeen-year-old Rebooter, is Syd’s bodyguard and must protect him with his life. But armed Machinists aren’t the only danger. People are falling ill --- their veins show through their skin, they find it hard to speak, and sores erupt all over their bodies. Guardians, the violent enforcers of the old system, are hit first, and the government does nothing to help. The old elites fall next, and in the face of an indifferent government, Syd decides it’s up to him to find a cure . . . and what he discovers leaves him stunned. Reviewed by Anita Lock.

Vote in Our Poll!

Summer is almost here! Where will you be reading in June, July and August?

  • By the beach/pool—Gotta have somewhere to cool off in between pages.
  • In the library—Love that quiet space and air conditioning.
  • In my favorite place in my house—I’ll go outside… After this chapter.
  • On a plane/train/automobile—Packing at least two books for vacation
  • In the park or some other kind of natural location—Anywhere outside works for me!

Last month, we asked if you planned to see THE FAULT IN OUR STARS movie, and a whopping 48% said that you did and you couldn't wait. 21% were excited even though you hadn't read the book (seriously: read it now!), and 18% were excited but a bit nervous, too. 11% of you haven't read the book and don't care about the movie, and a tiny 2% have read the book but are purposely avoiding the film!

Click here to take our poll!

 
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