March/April 2018: Love and First Sight by Josh Sundquist, c2017

Love and First Sight

modern teen romance
born blind but chance to see now
sorting out secrets

great background research makes for
a true-to-life, witting tale


February 2018: Wild Bird by Wendelin Van Draanen, c2017

Wild Bird
by Wendelin Van Draanen

she’s hit rock bottom:
drastic measures will force her
to reach for her strength

desert survival story
of second chances and more


January 2018: Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley, c2017

Words in Deep Blue
by Cath Crowley

unique bookshop home
there’s oceans of sorrow laced
with layers of hope

importance of love … and words … 
marvelously underlined


February/March/April 2017: Caraval by Stephanie Garber, c2017


dangerous intrigue
a nighttime, magical game
loyalties tested

richly descriptive treasures
hidden in this fantasy


January 2017: Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke, c2016

Wink Poppy Midnight

hiding in the woods
with three separate voices
twisting & turning

blurred lines of their obsessions
immersed in beautiful dread


December 2016: Dead Girls Society by Michelle Krys, c2016

Dead Girls Society

deadly game of dares
someone knows their dark secrets
no choice but to play

psychological fiction
for fans of fast-paced action


October/November 2016: Bone Gap by Laura Ruby, c2015

Bone Gap

evil abducts her
bullied by unknown faces
beyond surfaces

a dreamlike reality
powerful & beautiful


September 2016: Lucy and Linh by Alice Pung, c2016

Lucy and Linh

rich girls’ private school
keeping her true self apart
piecing together

deceiving appearances
needing to be acknowledged


August 2016: The Weight of Feathers by Anna-Marie McLemore, c2015

The Weight of Feathers

escalating feud
mermaid scales & black feathers
slow, forbidden love

magical bloodlines mixed in
poetic, lush imagery


July 2016: Defender by Graham McNamee, c2016


body found in wall
her dad may be the killer
when truth brings danger

down-to-the-bones mystery
realistic and chilling


June 2016: One by Sarah Crossan, c2015


dreams of being teens
conjoined sisters facing one
impossible choice

prepare yourself for the tears
a sensitive portrayal


May 2016: The Midnight Dress by Karen Foxlee, c2013

The Midnight Dress

small Australian town
morose Rose, outgoing Pearl
frail threads of friendship

mystical, eerie, lyric
mystery of missing girl


April 2016: Girl in the Blue Coat by Monica Hesse, c2016

Girl in the Blue Coat

World War Amsterdam
girl looking for missing girl
web of Resistance

reluctant heroism
with realistic suspense


March 2016: Swagger by Carl Deuker, c2013


high school basketball
trapped between conscience, goals, &
a predator coach

Detailed play-by-play action
surrounds hard-hitting choices.


February 2016: Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys, c2016

Salt to the Sea

haunted by their pasts
hurtling toward disaster
in hopes of escape

breath-taking, lyrical prose
of heart-wrenching tragedy


January 2016: The Nest by Kenneth Oppel, c2015

The Nest

wanting to help while
wicked, wicked wasps watch him
in worries' shadow

multi-layered tension builds
skin-crawling, sinister sting


December 2015: Blackbird Fly by Erin Entrada Kelly, c2015

Blackbird Fly

middle school meanness
misfit abandoned by friends
trying to fit in

learning to go your own way
remarkably authentic


November 2013: In the Shadow of Blackbirds by Cat Winters, c2013

In the Shadow of Blackbirds

blue smoke & whispers
her first true love cannot rest
devil-designed year

ghosts amidst war, the flu, and
a spiritualism craze


September/October 2015: Torn Away by Jennifer Brown, c2014

Torn Away

tornado-ripped town
redefining everything
rebuilding a life

love, loss, hope, & survival
deeply emotional, raw


August 2015: Buzz Kill by Beth Fantaskey, c2014

Buzz Kill

small town USA
her dad's accused of murder
Can she solve the case?

fun, fun, fun mystery rolled
up in wit, sass, and spunk


July 2015: The Prince of Venice Beach by Blake Nelson, c2014

The Prince of Venice Beach

noir surf, sand, & sun
street-smart teen turns private eye
dangerous choices

great characterizations
and unexpected endings


June 2015: Devoted by Jennifer Mathieu


Quiverfull church; she's
courageously questioning
her one precious life

sympathetic characters;
honest, balanced, respectful


May 2015: The Scar Boys by Len Vlahos, c2014

The Scar Boys

punk rock & guitars
burned, left feeling like a freak
self-confidence tour

a gritty coming-of-age
filled with music and teen angst


April 2015: Coaltown Jesus by Ron Koertge, c2013

Coaltown Jesus

death in modern day
teen sees witty, wise Jesus
triumph of healing

sparse free verse novel with depth
fresh meditations on life


March 2015: Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt, c2013

Going Vintage

cyber-cheating ex
she swears off technology
to make life simpler

a cute, sassy heroine
learning to stand on her own


February 2015: The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider, c2013

The Beginning of Everything

high school seniors mix
playing the expected part
remaking one's self

Great Gatsby implications
bookended by tragedies


January 2015: Beneath a Meth Moon: An Elegy by Jacqueline Woodson, c2012

Beneath a Meth Moon: An Elegy

post-Katrina life
she slipped away so quickly
snagged in addiction

beautifully sorrowful
stunningly realistic


December 2014: The Language Inside by Holly Thompson, c2013

The Language Inside

far from her known home
stressed, desperately homesick
challenging choices

wonderful mesh of cultures
told in perfect, precise verse


November 2014: For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund, c2012

For Darkness Shows the Stars

our past world shattered
misunderstanding secrets
Austen's Persuasion

in dystopian future
with a whisper of romance


October 2014: She Is Not Invisible by Marcus Sedgwick, c2013

She Is Not Invisible

fears for dad obsessed
blind teen searches foreign streets
making connections

coincidence history
bound in thrilling mystery


September 2014: Dark Water Rising by Marian Hale, c2006

Dark Water Rising

Galveston, Texas
deadly 1900 storm
teen must face his dad

great historical details
based on survivors' journal


August 2014: Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys, c2011

Between Shades of Gray

ripped from home without warning
veiled hope in her art

fluid, gentle prose tells of
Stalin's inhumanity


July 2014: Okay For Now by Gary D. Schmidt, c2011

Okay For Now

late 1960s
faces many challenges
struggling to be more

tears and laugh-out-loud moments
you will cheer for this young man


June 2014: We Were Liars by E. Lockhart, c2014

We Were Liars

a summer idyll
slowly gives herself away
desperate measures

writing worthy of prizes
Splendid. Powerful. Tragic.


May 2014: Orchards by Holly Thompson, c2011


bullies' aftermath
depression and suicide
blame, grief, regret, hope

repercussions resonate
Japanese culture entwined


April 2014: The Tyrant's Daughter by J.C. Carleson, c2014

The Tyrant's Daughter

suspicion and fear
a girl half Here & half There
pits of betrayal

all too real, too close to home
a spot-on story.  Awesome.


March 2014: The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan, c2012

The Weight of Water

-- a foreign country
-- a Polish teen immigrant
-- tough bullies to face

powerful story told with
sparse, precise verse. Poetic.


February 2014: Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan, c2013

Counting By 7s

unbearable loss
cast of lovable oddballs
life's connectedness

heartbreaking & heartwarming
a story to rejoice in


January 2014: The Wolf Princess by Cathryn Constable, c2013

The Wolf Princess

far Russian corner
dreams of cold mint diamond snow
discovering home

mysteries and adventures
modern, nostalgic, and wise


December 2013: Bluefish by Pat Schmatz, c2011


real-life teen troubles
finding ways to be themselves
connecting secrets

tall, quiet, new-kid Travis
and sassy Velveeta star


November 2013: Seraphina by Rachel Hartman, c2012


an uneasy truce
humans, dragons, a half-breed
peace destroyer lurks

rich language weaves a perfect
Renaissance fantasy world


October 2013: Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick, c2013


future, past, return
say his name, his horns appear
from bloody to blessed

gothic vignettes of orchids,
sacrifice, eternal love


September 2013: The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson, c2011

The Name of the Star

London boarding school
Louisiana teen sees
secret ghost police

romantic and sinister
Ripper mania thriller


August 2013: Summer and Bird by Katherine Catmull, c2012

Summer and Bird

Up world and Down world
two sisters of the swan each
finding their own way

heart strings manipulated
through a wondrous fantasy


July 2013: Incantation by Alice Hoffman, c2006


Spain, Fifteen-Hundred
cocooned in secrets, betrayed
a million sorrows

breathtakingly beautiful,
painful, and dappled with hope


June 2013: Bunheads by Sophie Flack, c2011


behind the glamour
intensely competitive
Passion or Romance?

insider details cast light
upon elite ballet world


May 2013: Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein, c2012

Code Name Verity

Gestapo and spies
bravery torture truth ties
switch of perspective

amazing intensity
expertly crafted fiction


April 2013: Bruiser by Neal Shusterman, c2010


words bruises and cuts
he's not what he seems to be
secret's costly price

hard-to-describe uniqueness;
a story that stays with you


March 2013: The Brides of Rollrock Island by Margo Lanagan, c2012

The Brides of Rollrock Island

seal-shaped land oft feared
misery and desire fetched
sea-hearts to ensnare

seductively strange folktale
of an awful loveliness


February 2013: Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo, c2012

Shadow and Bone

the Fold, an unsea
unfolds her dormant powers
deception abounds

mesmerizing fantasy
where the Darkling's elite lead


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