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Hot Reads: Suggestions from Teens

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Bookjacket for  All Our Yesterdays

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All Our Yesterdays All Our Yesterdays / Cristin Terrill

Em and Finn confront their past selves to try to prevent the horrible future where time travel is manipulated and people whose motives were only good turn evil when given the power to change the world with time. The time travel and suspense associated with it is seamless, and the revelations at the end are timed perfectly, revealing the character's motives and fixing time despite the intricate plot.

Reviewed by Olivia C.

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Bookjacket for  Ask the Passengers

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Ask the Passengers Ask the Passengers / A.S. King

The most compelling part of the book was wondering how Astrid would sort out her life, and how she would "come out" in her town and to a family that was very judgmental. This was the part that kept me reading, and the author did a good job of making the story suspenseful and dramatic to make you want to keep reading. I think that the recommended reading age level of 15 and up as stated on the back of the book is appropriate for the book's content.

Reviewed by Olivia C.

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Bookjacket for  Battle Magic

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Battle Magic Battle Magic / Tamora Pierce

Battle Magic depicts the events between Street Magic and The Will of the Empress. It expands the characters of Briar, Evvy, and Rosethorn. While in Yanjing, they encounter individual and "tailored" hardships, each on their own. Tamora Pierce filled out the shadow that was the events between Street Magic and The Will of the Empress tactfully while adding the little details that were hinted at in The Will of the Empress and Melting Stones. Briar, Evvy, and Rosethorn had some of the worst things possible done to them but even though it could be considered one of the others fault, no blame was held. It really helped in seeing more of their characters, especially Rosethorn and Evvy.

Reviewed by Akiva W.

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Bookjacket for  Below the Surface

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Below the Surface Below the Surface / Tim Shoemaker

Four kids are on a vacation when they witness what could possibly be the murder of a teenage girl. They have to face their fears and uncover the clues to find out if it really was a murder and who the murderer was. I believe that this book is the third book in the series. It makes references to the first two books but even though I have not read them, the story is still very clear and I still understood what was going on. I think the characters were well developed and realistic. The story plot itself went along smoothly. The mystery was resolved at the end in a very settle manner, that is, the clues leading up to that moment built up the suspense and the ending wasn't too sudden. I wanted to know to know who the murderer was and what really happened! I've read only a few mystery books, and didn't like most of them for the sheer fact that they were a bit boring! But this book didn't seem like a full blown mystery until you found out that someone might have died! And I enjoyed that! It was a bit like suspense, but didn't leave you hanging as much.

Reviewed by Emma T.

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Bookjacket for  Black Ice

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Black Ice Black Ice / Becca Fitzpatrick

Britt is going on a backpacking trip up in the mountains with a friend, but when their car gets stuck in the snow, they are kidnapped by two men who want Britt to show them how to get off the mountain. As she discovers evidence of many murders that took place on the mountain, she fears more for her life and hopes that her ex, Calvin, will come. She soon discovers that everyone is keeping secrets and maybe one of her kidnappers, Mason, might not be as cold-hearted as he seems.

This book amazed me whenever something happened, constantly kept my interest, had amazing characters, and fabulous writing. I just loved it! I did like the cover because it seemed mysterious, yet adventurous, and really pretty and thought out. It did reflect the contents on the setting being a mountain and really cold, and being really mysterious on the characters front. The most compelling aspect was how you thought you knew everything that was happening, but after a little while, you realized that your hypothesis was dead wrong. Everything was not how it seemed.

Reviewed by Annie K.

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Bookjacket for  Blink and Caution

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Blink and Caution Blink and Caution / Tim Wynne-Jones

Blink saw something he shouldn't have. He took something he shouldn't have too. Let's just say that he's gotten himself into a fair amount of trouble. Caution is involved with people she shouldn't be. She's running from something that shouldn't have happened. Let's just say that she has a lot to run from. When they meet, they find something in each other that they should have found a long time ago. It's up to the both of them to help each other get through a scandal and their pasts; let's just say they have a lot to do for one another.

I love this book. Definitely adding it to my favorite list. The author did a phenomenal job weaving the character's pasts, and a great job revealing them a little at a time. It kept the suspense high, not that the author needed much help in that department. Between Blink and Caution, the conflict within their own heads was enough, without the added fake kidnapping thrown on top. Seriously, this book was just phenomenal - READ IT!!

Reviewed by Rachel M.

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Bookjacket for The Bodies We Wear

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The Bodies We Wear The Bodies We Wear / Jeyn Roberts

One night Faye and her best friend, Christian, are forced to take the new drug Heam, in revenge for her father’s betrayal. Faye lived but Christian doesn't. After getting taken in by a stranger after her mother disowned her for the irreversible effects of the drug, her only goal is revenge, until she meets Chael. The plan gets more complicated as he knows all about her, and has her question her motives. This book was a very interesting and realistic book.

The writing was better than most and it seemed realistic with all the new drugs coming to the market and the deadliness of them. The drug in the book, Heam (entirely made up), leaves scars over your body, brings you to death's door, and is extremely addicting. This sounds like many of the drugs on the market now, but to the next extreme.

Reviewed by Annie K.

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Bookjacket for The Book Thief

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The Book Thief The Book Thief / Markus Zusak

Liesel, on a train to what will be her family for the next several years, is being put into the foster care system during Nazi Germany, and then her little brother dies. That is when it begins, the stealing of the books—at her brother's burial, the theft of a gravedigger's guide.

I thought The Book Thief was very good. The interactions between characters as they play around Liesel's desire to read and what comes from that were rather interesting. Looking back at the book now, it does seem as if it was written such that Liesel was manipulating the interaction. Besides this, Markus Zusak is just such a good writer that he makes it one of the best books I've read in a long time.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for  Can't Look Away

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Can't Look Away Can't Look Away / Donna Cooner

Torrey Grey's sister got hit by a car while she was recording one of her vlogs, shes famous on youtube. This makes her family move to Texas, and to new people who don't know her. She can't record, the face that looks back at her is not the one she wants, and it's hard enough trying to find her place at school, dealing with the boy who she has a crush on and the grief. Worst of all, people blame her sisters death on her, maybe she needs that crush more than she'd like to admit.

Reviewed by Annie K.

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Bookjacket for  Cinder

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Cinder Cinder / Marissa Meyer

Cinder is a cyborg who lives in New Beijing after World War IV. She is a mechanic, the best in the city, and when her prince learns of her skill, he pas her a very important visit. His visit is the first of many events that will completely change Cinder's life. I loved this book so much I cannot stop thinking about it.

I am in shock that I put off reading this series for so long, so you should read it so you don't have to feel the same way. The book overall kept me entertained and I could not put it down; I needed to know what would happen next, even if that meant losing sleep and jeopardizing my swim meet the next day. Cinder was a character who was very easy to like, and what was happening to her felt like it was happening to you. The plot had the perfect amount of action, humor, and romance. It did leave off on a big cliff hanger, however. Make sure you have access to the second book, Scarlet, while reading Cinder, it will help to preserve your mental health! And then read Cress and Winter.

Reviewed by Maggie H.

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Bookjacket for  Clockwork Angel

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Clockwork Angel Clockwork Angel / Cassandra Clare

This is a fantasy book about a girl who moves to London to find her brother.  If you like books that take place in the past and that are fast-paced, you might enjoy this one.  People who liked The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare have also enjoyed this book.

Reviewed by Amy W. 

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Bookjacket for  Cold Calls

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Cold Calls Cold Calls / Charles Benoit

Eric, Shelly, and Fatima are being blackmailed by an unknown person which is threatening their future. They all have secrets that would maim them forever if they got out. By teaming together, they must find the identity of the caller and stop him or her. The intricate plot development gives you a wonderful perspective into each and every character's head. You get an absolutely perfect layout of everyone. The way you don't get to know many things about each person until the later parts makes you stuck to the pages. You are almost afraid of stopping.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for  Conversion

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Conversion Conversion / Katherine Howe

Colleen is in the final stretch of high school, 2nd semester of senior year, when the most popular girl at her school starts having tics in the middle of class. The mysterious illness spreads around her school taking more and more victims, nobody seems to agree on the illness. Colleen has started to read The Crucible for extra credit, and notices many similarities from the book to her real life. This book kept my interest the whole way through and the author made it so that the reader can really connect with the characters.

Reviewed by Annie K.

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Bookjacket for A Corner of White

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A Corner of White A Corner of White / Jaclyn Moriarty

In two completely different worlds running side by side, two teens connect by letters through sheer randomness (and a crack that separates their dimensions). As some adventures come to an end, new ones begin, mixed with family, friendship, and romance troubles. I adored Jaclyn Moriarty's writing style in this book, especially during dialogue. The dialogue always sounded real, like the person was a real teen, sitting next to me, talking straight to me, instead of through book pages.

Reviewed by Akiva W.

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Bookjacket for A Court of Mist and Fury

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A Court of Mist and Fury A Court of Mist and Fury / Sarah J. Maas

Feyre is a girl who lives in a world split between the realm of the humans and the realm of the fae. The human world is being threatened while the fae world is held captive under an evil force. Feyre may be the only one able to save both of hem from the dangers that haunt them..

I love this book. The story is compelling and intricate and different from anything I have ever read before. Maas' books are a different brand of literature. The most compelling aspect of it for me was the characters. They were so lifelike and I have become so unbelievably invested in their lives.

Reviewed by Maggie H.

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Bookjacket for  Crack in the Sky

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Crack in the Sky Crack in the Sky / Mark Peter Hughes

I thought that the description of Wall-E meets The Giver is a pretty accurate description, with an emphasis on the Wall-E part. Except in this story, humanity moved inside domed cities to become enslaved to media while a giant corporation took care of everything. While the story is sort of slow to move along at first, the characters are well developed and the world building is absolutely fantastic.

It's impossible to read A Crack in the Sky without noticing some statements about society as it is today. The influences of global warming are part of the whole problem that cause the retreat to the idealistic domes, and the over-saturation of media is illustrated to an even greater extent with the "clouds" in the "sky" of the dome being eye-catching ads that no one can take their eye off of.

The one thing that I want to know, however, is...where can I get the cover of this book as a poster?

Reviewed by Rachel B.

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Bookjacket for A Creature of Moonlight

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A Creature of Moonlight A Creature of Moonlight / Rebecca Hahn

n a world that seems at peace but isn't fully, Marni is on the edge of the forbidden woods. She's been growing flowers for the king in exile, though her simple life is about to become extremely complicated. The writing is absolutely beautiful. You get stuck in there once you start. The writing is the best I've read in a while from contemporary fiction. You don't want to stop once you've started.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for  Dark Triumph

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Dark Triumph Dark Triumph / Robin LaFevers

Sybella is the daughter of death and has been given an assignment in the place of her nightmares, D'albret's court. Along the way, she helps a prisoner escape and they form a plan to overthrow D'albret and all of his allies, saving the duchess in the process.I liked the book. I enjoyed how it mixed people from the past into a story with original characters. I am a fan of books about assassins, especially ones who are hardcore. Sybella was a likable character, and I fell in love with Beast. There was a lot of action in the book, and I appreciated that. The thing I didn't like was that there was a lot of over-analysis of events and language that didn't quite fit with the rest of the writing. I can't wait to read the next one!

Reviewed by Maggie H.

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Bookjacket for  Dear Killer

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Dear Killer Dear Killer / Katherine Ewell

Kit is a regular teenager. She has father issues and homework, the usual stuff. But she's also a murderer. A serial assassin. The way Katherine Ewell writes is amazing. There's not a ton of dialogue or description of place, but her characters have depth and she explores wonderful and complex moral topics in Dear Killer.

Reviewed by Akiva W.

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Bookjacket for A Death-Struck Year

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A Death-Struck Year A Death-Struck Year / Makiia Lucier

In 1918, the Spanish influenza devastated the US. In A Death Struck Year, Cleo Berry joins the Red cross in Portland, Oregon, discovering that she is capable of saving lives even when she doesn't know exactly what's to become of her own. This book tells a fantastic story while educating readers about the Spanish influenza, a topic I was unfamiliar with and worth learning about. The most compelling part is the fear that each character experiences as the flu takes over everyone's lives, and the worry that they or their loved ones could be next. This is tied to Cleo's growth in the story, and her realization that she can't keep everyone safe, but she has more potential than she ever realized.

Reviewed by Olivia C.

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Bookjacket for  Destination Unknown

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Destination Unknown Destination Unknown / Amy Clipston

Whitney Richards is a perfect student, straight A's, except for a D in calculus. That imperfect grade prompts a course of events that puts her into control of her life and helps her find her identity.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for  Elena Vanishing: A Memoir

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Elena Vanishing: A Memoir Elena Vanishing: A Memoir / Elena and Claire B. Dunkie

For most, it's hard to imagine a few hours without eating, enter the non-fiction life of Elena who goes days without eating just to be skinny. Each day, Elena is vanishing, losing weight, this is the memoir of her battle with anorexia. The most compelling aspect was that this is a true story, it's not a fiction on the same subject, but it really makes you stop and think about the material that you just read.

Reviewed by Annie K.

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Bookjacket for  Endangered

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Endangered Endangered / Eliot Schrefer

When fighting breaks out in the Congo, Sophia, taking care of a baby bonobo she rescued from a trafficker, must survive in the increasing danger that comes to the bonobo shelter where she lives. She must find a way to live, and the only way is through the jungle.

Endangered was a book I had trouble putting down. The bond that forms between Sophia and her baby bonobo, how they helped each other to survive in their co-dependence, was one of the most interesting things I noticed while I was reading this book. Its one of the first books I've ever read that captures this bond so well.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for  Ender in Exile

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Ender in Exile Ender in Exile / Orson Scott Card

The war is over, and we won… what now? Ender struggles to reconnect with the world and to figure out just why they died. Personally, I read all of the other books multiple times first. I strongly recommend you read them all too but at least the Shadow series because it will very much spoil it but also finish it off. After reading all the books you get to see a gentle progression of all characters but Ender. This is by far one of my favorite books of all time!!

Reviewed by Charlie L.D.

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Bookjacket for  Everything, Everything

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Everything, Everything Everything, Everything / Nicola Yoon

Madeline Whittier is allergic to the world. She is eighteen years old and hasn't been outside of her house for seventeen of them. She is content with her life of safety and simplicity, but when a new neighbor, Olly, moves in next door, she starts to wonder… Is there a point in protecting your life, if you aren’t even going to live it?

This book was a masterpiece. It was inarguably well written, and had a plot that, while predictable at times, was still very interesting. Almost every character was extremely relatable, and those who weren’t were not exactly the kind of characters you would want to relate to. All in all, it was an incredible book that I would recommend to anyone interested in YA books.


Reviewed by Claire F.

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Bookjacket for  Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

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Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close / Jonathan Safran Foer

This is a fabulous book about a young boy who lost his father in 9/11, and then goes on a quest to for a lock that fits a key his father left behind.  If you like books that are sad but quirky, you might like this one.

Reviewed by Maisie

This book is from our Adult Fiction Collection and is recommended for older teen readers.  Also by this author, Everything Is Illuminated.

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Bookjacket for The Falconer

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The Falconer The Falconer / Elizabeth May

Aileana is a falconer. The last one. She fights the Fae. She trains to track and kill these creatures. But can she manage to kill the most powerful faery? This book is full of action and adventure. Its set in the late 1800's but has steam punk technology we don't even have yet. I can’t wait to read the next book.

Reviewed by Kady

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Bookjacket for  Falling into Place

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Falling into Place Falling into Place / Amy Zhang

Falling into Place explores the life of Liz Emerson, from preschool to days before the present. This was the best book I've read in a while. Every line leads to the next, until there is the point. Then that repeats. The cover is brilliant. My only complaint is that the title seems a little bit plain. I would make it fit in more. The book is beautifully done in general, all the characters deep and life-like. Nothing was overdone.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for  Far From You

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Far From You Far From You / Tess Sharpe

Sophie Winters has been uncomfortably close to death's door twice, a car accident and the shooting that took her best friend's life. She is on the hunt for the killer, knowing the police's description of the incident as a "drug deal gone wrong" is not correct in the slightest. The general idea combined with a writing style that fits very well and excellent characters makes this book very good. I'd venture as far as to call it one-of-a-kind.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for  Finding Audrey

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Finding Audrey Finding Audrey / Sophie Kinsella

Finding Audrey is the story of a 14 year old girl who has two types of anxiety, depression, wears dark glasses because she fears eye contact and never leaves the house, all due to an unknown accident. This book shows the hardships of trying to make baby steps to get better and shows the love between the girl and a boy named Linus. An absolute must read.

I loved this book. The characters interactions and motives were easy to relate to. I loved the romance between Audrey and Linus. I loved hearing Audrey talk about the hardship of trying to be normal while also balancing her situation. This book is one of the best books I have ever read, not even kidding. I think everybody should read Finding Audrey.

Reviewed by Emma L.

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Bookjacket for The Finisher

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The Finisher The Finisher / a novel by David Baldacci

The Finisher is about a girl named Vega who desires to go after her friend and mentor into the forbidden Quag. The only problem is that her town Wormwood is all she has ever known. Will she be willing to leave behind her entire childhood to discover what's beyond the unknown? Read this book to find out.


The Finisher is so well written that once you pick it up, you won't be able to put it down again. I liked how the cover showed the main characters in two different scenes. I also liked how it had the important symbol half the book is about behind the main characters. The most compelling aspect of the book is the mystery and the action.

Reviewed by Victoria D.

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Bookjacket for  Fire & Flood

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Fire & Flood Fire & Flood / Victoria Scott

Tella's brother Cody is dying, and his sickness is ruining everything. Her family moved away from all of Tella's friends, hoping fresh air would help. Then, she finds a mysterious earpiece her parents desperately try to take from her, but she must listen to its message. It tells her she is invited to take part in the Brimstone Bleed, a race across Jungle, Desert, Mountains, and Ocean. The reward - a cure. But there are over one hundred other competitors hoping for a cure for their loved ones. What is this race, and what is this mysterious disease?

Reviewed by Gabi S

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Bookjacket for  Firebug

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Firebug Firebug / Lish McBride

Ava can light fires just by thinking about it, a talent prized by the Coterie, a magical mafia. She's a top hit man, and she doesn't like her current assignment, to kill a family friend. This sparks a rebellion where she and her friends try to find a way to get out of this hole they've dug for themselves.

Firebug has really well developed characters, and everything pertaining to them is portrayed very well. The characters were rather interesting. Their personalities almost constantly clashed. The magic was also nice. It wasn't overdone, with the characters too powerful, but they were powerful enough to have nice battles.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for The Geography of You and Me

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The Geography of You and Me The Geography of You and Me / Jennifer E. Smith

In the middle of a black out covering all of New York, Owen and Lucy get stuck in an elevator. After they finally get out of the elevator they spend a night together. After the black out, they must say good bye as each of them move from New York to different places. Together they keep their relationship intact, through emails and post cards.

This book is special because it shows a unique love story. It is witty and has good imagery.

Reviewed by Lili G.

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Bookjacket for  Half Bad

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Half Bad Half Bad / Sally Green

Half Bad is about a teenage boy who lives in a world of magic amongst us, where Black witches are bad and White witches are good. Nathan is a combination of the two, and the son of the most powerful black witch, and the only person capable of destroying his father. He must receive his 3 gifts from his father soon, but the white witches won't let this happen and hope only to use him as a weapon.

I found Half Bad really interesting and entertaining. The writing style and voice in the book also made it tons of fun to read and it was almost impossible to put down.

Reviewed by Annie K.

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Bookjacket for  How I Lost You

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How I Lost You How I Lost You / Janet Gurtler

Grace is a casual girl with an outgoing best friend. Her best friend, Kya, is pretty, clever, and beautiful. Grace is just the sidekick. Grace knows about Kya's past and the horrific secret that must remain, well, secret. Grace would do anything to protect Kya, but when Kya splits up with a best buddy, Grace starts to wonder if she's next. Will Grace be able to pull Kya back in, or will she lose her forever?

This book has romance with a twist of drama, which makes it a perfect teen read. Also in this book, Grace realizes who she really is, and it helps the readers find themselves. I think it is a very inspirational and life lesson giving.

Reviewed by Cambria C.

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Bookjacket for  I Have a Bad Feeling About This

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I Have a Bad Feeling About This I Have a Bad Feeling About This / Jeff Strand

This book is about a wimpy kid named Henry that is forced by his parents to go to a survival camp. Although his best friend Randy is pumped for camp, Henry is not so sure. But I Have a Bad Feeling About This tells how Henry survived through survival camp with much humor and plenty of action.

This book had my whole family laughing until their sides hurt and it's a story that anyone would enjoy! This book was amazing!

Reviewed by Victoria D.

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Bookjacket for  Impossible

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Impossible Impossible / Nancy Werlin

Lucy Scarborough is 17, pregnant and cursed, as were all of her previous ancestors. In order to break the curse that will drive her insane after she has her child, she must complete three impossible tasks set before her in the song "The Elfin Knight." Where her mother, grandmother, great grandmother and so on only had the lyrics to help them, Lucy has so much more. She has her uber protective foster parents, Leo and Soledad and her life long friend Zach Greenfield, who might be more than a friend.

This amazing coming of age tale has enough real life situations in it that it doesn't even seem impossible. The time they have to break the curse is small and it really comes down to the wire. The reader will face the same doubt Lucy feels about completing the tasks in time.
 
Reviewed by Rachel M.
 
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Bookjacket for  Indigo Notebook

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Indigo Notebook Indigo Notebook / Laura Resau

It was an absolutely spectacular book about a young girl named Zeeta.  Her whole life is an adventure with her mom.  If you like books that make you think, and generally make you happy, you might like this one.  People who liked What the Moon Saw, by the same author, have also enjoyed this book.  A great book, by a great author!

Reviewed by Jordon T.

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Bookjacket for  Inkheart

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Inkheart Inkheart / Cornelia Funke

Silvertongue. That's what they all call him—the one who can bring words to life. One night, Silvertongue and his daughter, Maggie, get visitors, and from that night on, nothing will ever be the same.

The most fascinating part of Inkheart would be the characters. Each one is crafted with a uniqueness to him or her. Capricorn has not a thread of light in his being; Dustfinger is woven with incredible abilities; Silvertongue is created with care, fierce love, and an incredibly useful voice; and countless others.

I was not disappointed with this book for any reason. (Just with the movie, which I hated.) This is the perfect book for one like me who loves words. This book is a MUST READ for anyone out there who also adores words.

Reviewed by Jordan H.

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Bookjacket for The Kidney Hypothetical

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The Kidney Hypothetical The Kidney Hypothetical / Lisa Yee

When king of the school, Higgs, gets asked by his girlfriend rather he would or wouldn't give her one of his kidneys and he doesn't respond immediately with yes, it's day one of his life falling apart. Each day is another challenge and loss of more "friends," but there is only one week of school left until Harvard, but even that is starting to get reevaluated. There is Monarch, though, the rebellious girl who lives in the woods and he knows pretty much nothing about, but he tells her pretty much everything.

The story was relatable, amazing, engaging, and overall, just great. I didn't want to put the book down and loved how the characters developed and the writing style was perfect and terrific for the story told. Out of all the amazing aspects to the book, the most compelling would be most likely in how the story was told so that you get the fullest experience of the book.

Reviewed by Annie K.

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Bookjacket for  Let's Get Lost

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Let's Get Lost Let's Get Lost / Adi Alsaid

Let's Get Lost is about Leila, a normal teenage girl. Her plan is to go on a long road trip to see the Northern Lights in an attempt to remember her past that she forgot during a car accident that took her family's lives. Along the way she meets four people, all with different stories, and helps to guide them on the path that they want, but won't admit, discovering life along the way.

This book is special because it really kept me interested and engaged in the plot line and the characters. The writing also was spectacular and better than most books I've read. The most compelling aspect of the book was the main character, Leila, and how her adventure is portrayed in the book. I loved how her mind worked in the book, leading others on the path that they wanted, but never found their way to.

Reviewed by Annie K.

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Bookjacket for A List of Things That Didn't Kill Me: A Memoir

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A List of Things That Didn't Kill Me: A Memoir A List of Things That Didn't Kill Me: A Memoir / Jason Schmidt

A List of Things That Didn't Kill Me is a memoir of the life of Jason Schmidt. It is a novel with lots of stories and interesting thoughts. The most compelling aspect of the book was the drama that took place in each event.

Reviewed by Victoria D.

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Bookjacket for  Living Dead Girl

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Living Dead Girl Living Dead Girl / Elizabeth Scott

This is the story of an Alice. Before she was Alice, she was a spoiled little girl. Until Ray took her away and taught her otherwise. Now she's been surviving for five years with the pedophile. Compliant and dreaming of the day he kills her. Too bad Ray has other plans...

Living Dead Girl is just so powerful. From the way Alice was 'created' to her present thoughts. With narration so deliberate that it was like the author had a word limit; every page just struck a chord in me and I had to keep reading. Alice was a very broken-down protagonist, but it was played out so well. The haunting voice she uses to tell her story just made every sentence stick in my mind. Possibly forever. The writing itself was amazing. Elizabeth Scott is so talented that it simply brings to life her rather unnerving plot. This book is a very shocking way to tell people to wake up and really look at someone.

Reviewed by Samantha Y.

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Bookjacket for  Lois Lane: Fallout

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Lois Lane: Fallout Lois Lane: Fallout / Gwenda Bond

Lois Lane is in high school, and on her first day of school she already gets mixed up in a mess of bad principals, bullies, secrecy, and mind control. As Lois Lane tries to uncover her mysterious, online friend’s identity, she fights in an online gaming battle against the Warheads, who are a group of bullies accused of harassment and mind control.

The most compelling aspect of the book is the action. I loved this book, I completely related to the main character and I was so excited about what would happen next or about who her mysterious, online friend was.

Reviewed by Victoria D.

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Bookjacket for The Lost Prince

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The Lost Prince The Lost Prince / Matt Myklusch

The first book in the Seaborne series, it’s about pirates. A boy named Dean Seaborne is a spy. One-Eyed Jack is Dean’s captain who sends him out on spy missions to other pirates to steal gold. Later on though, Dean finds out that he is a lost prince…but he doesn’t believe it. It is a good and interesting book with suspense and things happening that you don’t expect. Abby B.


Bookjacket for  Loveboat, Taipei

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Loveboat, Taipei Loveboat, Taipei / Abigail Hing Wen

Ever Wong wants to be a dancer, but her strict parents want her to focus on being a doctor. When they send her to mandarin camp however, she realized that “Loveboat” is actually a camp with zero supervision where Chinese immigrants are able to let lose and don’t have constant watch. Loveboat Taipei is a story about a young girl who is really just beginning to discover who she is.

I absolutely devoured this amazing own voice novel, captivated from the very first page! I thought it was super cool to learn about Loveboat, something I have never heard of, as well as the culture in Taipei, and traditions of immigrant families. As an adopted Chinese, even though I did not grow up with the stereotypical Chinese immigrant parents, strict with high expectations, I personally still found many things I could relate to with Ever. I loved the romance, drama, and coming of age as these characters discover who they are out in the real world. I thought it was an extremely well written story that has kept me up every night reading, with dramatic events and consequences falling into place as the story goes on. I would highly recommend it to anyone and everyone to read, and although it was quite insightful, reading it from another Asians perspective, anyone can read it!

Reviewed by Alexandria K.

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Bookjacket for A Mango-Shaped Space

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A Mango-Shaped Space A Mango-Shaped Space / Wendy Mass

A girl named Mia has, in my opinion, a brilliant, condition called synesthesia. Synesthesia is a condition that happens when a sense, such as sight, triggers another sense, like smell, at the same time.  Her Grandfather dies and a respiratory disordered cat is by his grave. She raises him as her own. The cat seems to be a light in her differed world.  Without a choice, she realizes that some miracles will only come if life happens. 

At first, I couldn't believe that Mia was undergoing something so... brilliant. A Mango Shaped Space is definitely worth reading.

Reviewed by Gianna G.

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Bookjacket for The Maze Runner

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The Maze Runner The Maze Runner / James Dashner

This is a thrilling adventure of the protagonist, Thomas, as he learns about the strange prison where he awakens. With his new friends, he tries to escape the prison while trying to avoid the terrible monsters guarding it. This book is very hard to put down--a good read that starts a good series.

Reviewed by Charlie D.

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Bookjacket for  Midnight Thief

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Midnight Thief Midnight Thief / Livia Blackburne

From years on the streets of Forge, Kyra has a set of skills that are perfect for a job of the Assassins Guild. Tristam of Brancel has had his best friend murdered by the Demon Riders, vicious warriors on savage wildcats. A part of Kyra's job brings them together in a mutual quest.

I really enjoyed reading this book. It was a little lacking in the development of characters besides Kyra, Tristam, and James, though that is part of the writing and works. The fantasy world was a little rough around the edges; development wasn't conveyed in full to the reader. Please keep in mind this is better than some author’s best novels by a long shot, and for a debut this is stellar.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for  MILA 2.0

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MILA 2.0 MILA 2.0 / Debra Driza

Mila cannot remember anything about her past except for a few choice memories. Then she is flung from a car and discovers that she is not fully human. Mila is an android, her past is entirely fabricated, and her creators are hunting for her.

This book is an incredible page turner. The only reason I put it down was because it was so late I could barely read the words. Mila is an amazing character, holding on to her humanity even as her existence strips it away. No matter what happens, you root for her. I loved the cover. It looked like Mila was both being put together and being ripped apart. I loved the whole concept of the story. It was what got me to read it in the first place, and kept me enthralled. But when the concept was applied to a character as well written as Mila, it was as if my hands were glued to the book.

Reviewed by Madison C.

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Bookjacket for The Monstrumologist

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The Monstrumologist The Monstrumologist / Rick Yancy

Recently orphaned Will Henry is a twelve year old in 1888, with a rather unusual occupation. He is the "assistant-apprentice" to a monstrumologist, the deranged Doctor Pellinore Winthrop. As his assistant, Will Henry is pulled into a dark mystery of real-world monsters, which threaten his town, and also the world.

The book is well-paced, and kept me turning each page, desperate to know what happened next, and also a bit terrified to find out. One of my favorite aspects is that it's written as though the book is an actual diary, and the actual author (Rick Yancey) is listed as but an editor, a trick employed by others, but which few do so quite as well. It's a fun twist that helps build up further suspense and helps smudge the line between fantasy and reality a bit further, enhanced by tiny nods to real world events. Overall, a highly effective technique. Sequels: Curse of the Wendigo and Isle of Blood.

Reviewed by Maisie I.

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Bookjacket for  My Best Friend, Maybe

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My Best Friend, Maybe My Best Friend, Maybe / Caela Carter

Colette doesn't know why after three years of silence, her ex-best friend suddenly needs her. She doesn't know why they stopped being friends, but she realizes that she wishes they hadn't. Colette joins her ex-friend Sadie and her family on a trip which will reveal what really happened three years ago, and which will help her figure out who she really wants to be.

The intricate storyline plus the detail and imagery used to describe the setting and draw the reader in make this book special. The book deals with important issues such as sexuality, friendship, and family in a unique way, creating an amazing story.

Reviewed by Olivia C.

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Bookjacket for  Noggin

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Noggin Noggin / John Corey Whaley

Travis wakes up with his head attached to a body that is not his in a world different from what he remembers yet still painfully the same. This book deals with the aftermath of mourning, when the one you are mourning is still alive.

I was on the fence for this book because while it had great voice and dealt with a wonderful array of topics, there were some disturbing points. But nonetheless, it's a wonderful book. The completely weird and bizarre concept that this book took worked out so perfectly.

The characters were most definitely the reason you wanted to keep reading this book. Even when the plot dragged, the characters were enough to keep you hooked. The voice of Travis was used to its full ability. There were terrible jokes, bad puns, strange reactions, and they all worked. I liked Travis as a character because he was so stuck in the past. I just loved the way he handled his death. To him, it was like it hadn't happened. Sure, that made it very hard for him to understand the people who did have to suffer his passing (and sometimes he didn't try) but that just made him sort of relatable. I also liked that the book dealt with the internal struggles of coming out of the closet.

Reviewed by Samantha

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Bookjacket for  Num8ers

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Num8ers Num8ers / Rachel Ward

Jem can’t look into people's eyes. Every time she does, she sees people's death dates. She goes from foster home to foster home. When she and friend Spider are seen running from the scene of a crime, they must run away from home. They steal cars and money, and are wanted by the police. Will they get caught? Will they live to see the end?


I definitely enjoyed this book very much. It really made me yearn for more. Luckily, there are a couple others to the series. The most compelling aspect of this book is that it’s funny at moments, but then it turns mysterious or very serious.

Reviewed by Emma T.

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Bookjacket for A Prince Without a Kingdom

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A Prince Without a Kingdom A Prince Without a Kingdom / Timothée de Fombelle

A Prince Without a Kingdom (sequel to Vango, Between Sky and Earth) follows a man named Vango Romano on the run for his life not only from the police but from Soviet Spies as well. During Vango's flight he also discovers his past as well as rekindles love for his lost sweetheart.

This book is amazing, beautiful, and excellent. The book compelled this opinion by being masterfully put together is was almost like being inside the book.

Reviewed by Madeleine B.

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Bookjacket for  Rapture Practice: A True Story

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Rapture Practice: A True Story Rapture Practice: A True Story / Aaron Hartzler

Aaron has been raised his entire life in a devoted Christian family. He has promised his heart to Jesus, goes to church, and goes to Christian school. Only in his later years does he realize... he is too restricted by his parents. Aaron begins to rebel against his parents. He sneaks out to movies, makes out with girls, and even has beers at his friend’s house. But when this secret world comes crashing down around him, will he forever lie to his parents or show them his true self?

This book had me captivated from the beginning. I truly enjoyed each twist and turn this book offered. The author's words had me filled with anger, sadness, or joy in each chapter. The most compelling aspect of this book was how the emotions the words on the page made me feel. I was right there, living his frustration and anger. It was amazing.

Reviewed by Cambria C.

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Bookjacket for  Read Between the Lines

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Read Between the Lines Read Between the Lines / Jo Knowles

Nate, unpopular, suffers a middle finger breakage in gym class; a cheerleader who is pretty sure that's not where she belongs; a group of boys robbing people with only one feeling remorse. These and many more short stories make up Read Between the Lines.

Reviewed by Annie K.

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Bookjacket for  Red Rising

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Red Rising Red Rising / Pierce Brown

Darrow lives his life as a Helldiver on Mars, a red mining helium-3 in order to terraform Mars so the higher colors can inhabit the planet. When a series of executions occur, Darrow being among those executed, he is spared, drugged so that he can be revived later. Now he is with a group that plans to send him into the training school of the Golds, the highest class in the caste system he's a member of--to take down society from within.


Red Rising is a very compelling story. I had a great time reading it. Darrow's transformation, both physically and mentally, was a very interesting arc as the balance of power at the academy swung different ways. What must accompany a person as they become a Gold from a Red is extraordinary, like any shift from the dregs of society to the top of the heap would involve. The sequel is Golden Son.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for The Replacement

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The Replacement The Replacement / Brenna Yovanoff

Mackie is dying in the human world. It makes sense, though, since he doesn't belong here- he is a Replacement, left in the crib of a human baby when that baby was stolen by the beings who live under the slag heap. When another child is taken - the little sister of a girl he likes - Mackie is finally forced to confront what he is and the world he came from.

This is the one book I've read so far that deserved its hype- and more. Dark fairy tales are about as harsh as the real world, and elements of that kind of eerie horror can make a book about the fantastic into something... believable—even if there are living dead girls walking around. The true reluctant hero is difficult to pull off, but Yovanoff managed it; and maybe I'm not the best judge, but he sounded like a teenage boy to me. I'm not sure what their thoughts are like, but his words and actions definitely rang true. Tate was spunky and determined, and when she was told to stay out of something she figured out how to be useful and got right back in.

Reviewd by Lisa M.

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Bookjacket for The Rithmatist

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The Rithmatist The Rithmatist / Brandon Sanderson

The Rithmatist is an epic fantasy novel that centers on the characters Joel, a non-Rithmatist who desperately wants to be one, and Melody, a Rithmatist who can't draw her lines right. The two of them get to know each other as they work tirelessly, as they work to stop a series of kidnappings and murders...and stumble onto the darker plot taking place underneath.

The book has a fantastic plot that reveals nothing until the very end and leaves you wanting more, world building enough for two worlds, and a writing style that draws you into the book and makes even the boring parts seem interesting. The most compelling aspect of his book would have to be the way that it combines an epic storytelling style with the quirks and sticks of Joel and Melody's relationship to produce a story that is both a comedy and an action adventure. It is a rather perfect blend of fantasy and humor, with a nice undertone of mystery that makes it gripping and enjoyable.

Reviewed by Sam S.

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Bookjacket for  Sandman: A Game of You

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Sandman: A Game of You Sandman: A Game of You / Neil Gaiman

Neil Gaiman’s Sandman comics are small. If you had all of them on hand, you could probably read them in a day or less. Providing, that is, that you wanted to - which you probably wouldn’t, because along with being creative and brilliant and in all other ways pure Gaiman, The Sandman is a series of dark, heavy little books.

Volume five, A Game of You, is somewhat less so than the books that precede it. There’s blood, of course, but not so much as in Preludes and Nocturnes. A Game of You is more of a classical fantasy plot. Barbie, the protagonist, has stopped dreaming - but her dreams aren’t held back by little things like that. Barbie left before her quest was fulfilled, and the creatures of her dreams are coming into her world to find her. When she does get sucked back into the Land, though, her worried friends follow, causing mayhem in both worlds in the process.

Though it’s the fifth volume, A Game of You would make a good starting place, a sampler for a reader not yet sure about the series.

Reviewed by Lisa M.

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Bookjacket for  Savvy

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Savvy Savvy / Ingrid Law

Savvy is a Southern, freewheeling romp of a book. It’s lighthearted and light reading, and it’s great fun too.

The story starts not long before Mibs Beaumont’s thirteenth birthday, the day when she will discover her ‘savvy’. Everyone in her family has a special talent—her grandmother could “can” sound; her grandfather creates new places; and her two older brothers create hurricanes and electricity. Mibs can’t wait to discover her own savvy- until her Papa is in a car crash a few days before she turns thirteen. Even a savvy takes second stage to that—to the point that Mibs, two of her brothers, and the preacher’s kids hop a bus to the hospital…only to find it going the wrong way!

This book won a Newbery Honor Medal, and it’s easy to see why. In essence, it’s a story about ordinary people, with just a bit of a magical twist. The basic parts of the plot could conceivably happen anywhere, to anyone. There are few readers who can’t sympathize with Mibs’s desire to help her Papa and recognize that, while her methods may be unorthodox, her motivation is common: Love.

Reviewed by Lisa M.

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Bookjacket for The Scorpio Races

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The Scorpio Races The Scorpio Races / Maggie Stiefvater

This book is about the lead up to the Scorpio Races, a race that is run by amphibious, man eating water horses. The story follows Puck, a poor orphan girl, who is trying to win the races without a water horse, and Sean Kendrick, a four time winner of the Scorpio Races, as they slowly begin to know and help each other. This book has an amazing plot line and an ending that is nothing short of amazing.

I really enjoyed this book. The most compelling aspect of this book is that it keeps going back and forth between the two characters so you never get bored with the book.

Reviewed by Sam S.

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Bookjacket for  Seaborne: The Lost Prince

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Seaborne: The Lost Prince Seaborne: The Lost Prince / Matt Myklusch

The first book in the Seaborne series, it’s about pirates. A boy named Dean Seaborne is a spy. One-Eyed Jack is Dean’s captain who sends him out on spy missions to other pirates to steal gold. Later on though, Dean finds out that he is a lost prince…but he doesn’t believe it. It is a good and interesting book with suspense and things happening that you don’t expect.    -Abby B.


Bookjacket for  Siege and Storm

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Siege and Storm Siege and Storm / Leigh Bardugo

Siege and Storm is the sequel to Shadow and Bone, and continues the story of Alina, the Sun Summoner. Alina and Mal have been on the run from the Darkling, but now they are on a boat owned by a mysterious privateer and seeking a second amplifier to increase Alina's power. Alina must put together an army, while holding onto herself and the people she cares about most.

This book was better than the first; it was darker, but it also allowed a lot of character development. We got to see who Alina really was, and see clearly the differences between her and Mal. I also really loved the character Nikolai. The best part was the clear distinctions between characters. You see the differences between Alina and Mal, and the different paths their lives were taking, but also the similarities between her and Nikolai and the Darkling. How the power was changing Alina was fascinating, because you could clearly see the differences in her throughout the book, without even needing to be told they were there.

Reviewed by Bethany C.

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Bookjacket for  Six Months Later

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Six Months Later Six Months Later / Natalie D. Richards

Chloe Spinnaker is an average student just barely making the grade. But one day after falling asleep in study hall, in the middle of spring, she wakes up to snow and an empty classroom. Six months of her life has passed and she has no clue what happened except that now she is popular and has lots of friends. That is, except for her only true friend, Maggie, who won't even look at her. The mystery, confusion, and friendships in this book make it unbearable to put down! It was awesome!

Reviewed by Victoria D.

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Bookjacket for  Six of Crows

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Six of Crows Six of Crows / Leigh Bardugo

Criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker and his team are appointed to steal something, something which holds the world in balance between destruction and life. Peril lies at every corner, secrets are revealed, and pasts reckoned with.

 

This book is amazing. I love that there is character tension and romantic tension as well that still leave this book to be like the gritty reality of life. The constant Mission Impossible feel throughout the book especially compels me to really like it.

 

Reviewed by Madeleine B.

 

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Bookjacket for The Song of Achilles

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The Song of Achilles The Song of Achilles / Madeline Miller

The Song of Achilles follows a Greek boy, Patroclus, and his life with his best friend and eventual love interest, Achilles. The book starts with when Patroclus is five years old and gives the story of his life up to the Trojan war. The book drew me in from the very first chapter. The characters were very life-like and I became very emotionally invested in what happened to them. They didn't seem unnatural or fake; they seemed like people who could be alive today.

However, it wasn't only the characters that made me fall in love with the book. It was how Madeline Miller was able to weave in Patroclus and Achilles' love into the story flawlessly. The relationship she brought to life had been more life-like than other books' pairings are. By the end, I was crying for the pairing, and I could not stop thinking about the book once I finished it. In fact, I immediately reread some parts I was so invested in the story. Altogether, the characters and their reactions to other characters, as well as the plot line, made me fall in love with the book.

Reviewed by Maggie H.

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Bookjacket for A Spy in the House

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A Spy in the House A Spy in the House / Y.S. Lee

Mary Quinn was almost hanged for a thief at the age of 12, but she was rescued by a woman from a school for young ladies. Only years later does Mary learn that the school runs another operation: a network of spies and investigators, all female, working on cases throughout London. And they want her to take part.

Historical fiction isn't one of my favorite genres, but I enjoyed this book. It reminded me—often, and a lot - of Phillip Pullman's Ruby in the Smoke, and given the option I'd take Pullman over Lee easy. However, the mystery in this book and the description of Victorian times were both quite interesting and kept me reading. My only major complaint is the 'hero' and love interest - he's painted as a jerk in the beginning of the novel, and somehow without changing that much turns Mary's perception of him around. (While I, the reader, still have a beef with his attitude.)

Reviewed by Lisa M.

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Bookjacket for The Strange & Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender

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The Strange & Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender The Strange & Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender / Leslye Walton

Among other things, Ava Lavender is born with wings. To find where she came from and where to go, Ava explores her past, a family history of painful love, with the past of others as they display the wounds that love inflicts and the hope it can almost bring. If you let it.

The writing is so beautiful. It touched upon all the sorrows of love in the most poignant way while almost maintaining a sense of abstract humor. If you can appreciate the irony of it, that is. It seems so rare to find a YA book so dark yet well done. I think the fact that the main topic was love was the best part. Love really stabbed these characters in the back, time and time again. It's like a fairytale without all the Disney editing.

This book could easily be one that people either love or hate. The truly lyrical prose could capture anyone's attention but the odd, lengthy plot may not. I think that would be a shame since this is one of the best books I've ever read.

Reviewed by Samantha Y.

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Bookjacket for  Sunrise

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Sunrise Sunrise / Mike Mullin

After the supervolcano that changes the world forever, lots of people lost their lives. In a newly formed community, their homes are no longer safe. The adults are not facing the realities of the situation. Alex and Darla are teens who must now create a new community.

I liked it because each chapter gets more interesting as it goes along. There’s lots of excitement and suspense. This is the third book in the series, be sure to read Ashfall and Ashen Winter first.

Reviewed by Abby B.

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Bookjacket for The Testing

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The Testing The Testing / Joelle Charbonneau

Sixteen-year-old Cia has been chosen to participate in the Testing, a rigorous examination of the United Commonwealth's best and brightest to decide who will be the leaders of the country. She is exited and anticipating the outcome, though as the Testing goes on she discovers she knows less and less about her country than she originally thought.

I enjoyed The Testing. The changes that were made in society after the Seven Stages War were really interesting, especially in the little things that we take for granted. When something like those are put into a different perspective, it's amazing how much you notice about them and how bad they can be

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for  There Will Come a Time

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There Will Come a Time There Will Come a Time / Carrie Arcos

 There Will Come a Time is about a boy, Mark, who lost his twin sister Grace in a car crash that he was also in. He constantly has a hard time wishing that it was him who died or just feeling alone in the world, until he and a childhood friend, Hannah, decide to honor her by completing one of her Top 5 lists. This book is special because the characters felt almost real, and the storyline was very unique and emotional. The writing was exceptional and cover design was intriguing. The most compelling aspect of the book was the constant dilemmas that faced the main character as tried to live a life without his loving twin. –Annie K.


Bookjacket for  These Shallow Graves

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These Shallow Graves These Shallow Graves / Jennifer Donnelly

This book is about a prim and proper socialite, just out of finishing school, drawn into the underworld of New York City after her father's death. On her journey for the truth in the streets of New York she meets she meets an infuriatingly handsome newspaper reporter that might be willing to help her find the answers of her father's death.

I thought it was well written and really captured the Victorian era, but it could have ended with more closure (maybe there will be a sequel). The most compelling aspect was the vivid pictures the author creates with words.

Reviewed by Madeleine B.

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Bookjacket for  This Song Will Save Your Life

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This Song Will Save Your Life This Song Will Save Your Life / Leila Sales

Somewhere along the way, everyone had decided that Elise Dembowski didn't belong. And the worst part is, she doesn't even know why. Stuck at the bottom of the social scene, Elise is ready to give up until she stumbles upon Start: the world's greatest dance party. There she finds accepting friends, her first ever love interest, and a passion for DJing. This book blurb starts the reader with this overused outcast as the protagonist, puts her in a predictable, life-changing situation, and then leaves off with a very cheesy sentiment. Yet the novel is everything but that. It is so amazing to be read about a character who is so relatable. Not because I was bullied or rejected but because she was so REAL.

The plot was executed so well with so many underlying subplots and conflicts. It was all so realistic and in the end, very uplifting. This book is special because it took a plain genre, a generic character, and a standard plotline and made something incredible. The cover is beautiful. The colors are attractive, the effects are alluring, and everything about it made me think about Elise. The real Elise, as in Glendale's hottest DJ. I loved how the word 'love' was highlighted in the title, though I admit it took me about two days to catch on. Elise was the best part of the book. Who she was, what she was going through. She made me want to scream and cry and laugh. Everything about her narration was so raw, especially when the Fake Elise started getting to her. It was both heartbreaking and heartwarming to read through her eyes. I could start relating to Elise within the first chapter. She thought of her project as a makeover. I call it mimicking. You talk the way they talk, you act with their attitude, and you laugh when they laugh. Learn all the rules and get an effortless sense of fashion sense. Ta-da, best friends! To all the un-realistic fiction writers, that doesn't work. Elise was an outcast, yes, but she also couldn't change that. She couldn't change who she was or what she liked and she didn't magically become popular. The novel addressed that right off the bat. This whole book was incredibly real. It was funny both terrifying and filled to the brim with emotion. Each character brought their own story and their own honest personalities. I think this is just one of those novels that reflects reality. It makes it relatable to everyone, not just the outcasts or the bullied. Everyone who has ever struggled to fit in will find themselves in this book.

Reviewed by Samantha Y.

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Bookjacket for The Tightrope Walkers

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The Tightrope Walkers The Tightrope Walkers / David Almond

This book reflects on the triumphs and hardships of growing up. It will make you feel disgusted and hopeful all the same time. The Tightrope Walkers is an absolute must read.

I really enjoyed The Tightrope Walkers because I enjoyed the way it showed how one boy struggled and tried to find out who he was. I didn't enjoy the ending because it was really rushed and I just felt like the main character made a really stupid decision that ruined the ending. However, I enjoyed the character build up, the plot and the setting. All were very vivid and I felt more connected to the book. A great read! A really great read!

Reviewed by Emma L.

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Bookjacket for  Truancy

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Truancy Truancy / Isamu Fukui

Education is everything, especially if you live in the city that Tack does. The system is corrupt, the teachers cruel, and those who have left school are left to their own devices...and for some such as the Truancy leader Zyid, their own devices are deadly. When Zyid kills someone close to Tack, he is ready for revenge and in order to get this, he must join the Truancy himself.

I could not believe, when I started this book, that it was written by a fifteen-year-old. The richness in writing style is advanced far beyond what anyone could have ever expected and I could say the very same about the brilliant plot. I was not disappointed with the book at all, particularly the climax, which is practically cinema-worthy.

Reviewed by Rachel B.

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Bookjacket for  Trust Me, I'm Lying

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Trust Me, I'm Lying Trust Me, I'm Lying / Mary Elizabeth Summer

Trust Me, I'm Lying by Mary Elizabeth Summer is about a girl named Julep Dupree. She and her father are con men. Julep returns home one day to her apartment ransacked and her father missing. This story is a mystery with a love triangle. This book is funny, yet it can break your heart and it keeps you wanting to read. I like that the cover showed how Julep is 2 different people showing the conman inside her. The cover reflected the content very well. The most compelling aspect of the book is the mystery. This causes many plot twists right when you're ready to put the book down so you never want to.

Reviewed by Noha S.

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Bookjacket for  Tunnels

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Tunnels Tunnels / Roderick Gordon

Beneath London, lies an age old city: The Colony. Where the Styx ruthlessly rule over the Colonists, having total control over everything that happens and carrying out any command they please. Topsoilers are hated among the Colonists and even more so by the Styx. Will and Chester are Topsoilers, and they're going to The Colony in search of Will's father, Dr. Burrows, who mysteriously went missing without a trace. Their friendship will be tested, their lives put at stake. New friends will be made and old histories will be uncovered in the depths of the earth... in The Colony.

For a first book, Gordon and Williams did a wonderful job with the character building, as well as setting and word choice. One of my favorite things about Tunnels is the vivid description, and again, word choice. Every step of the way, I knew WHERE I was, WHO I was hearing and WHAT was going on. I enjoyed the great pictures both on the page and in my mind along with it all. Contiune the series with book 2,  Deeper.

Reviewed by Jordan H.

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Bookjacket for  Uglies

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Uglies Uglies / Scott Westerfeld

Tally is about to become a Pretty, marking a turning point in her life. When she meets Shay, and Shay runs away, Tally must track her down and find her or be stuck as an Ugly for life.

Uglies was a book that I tore through. I haven't been reading much lately, and after picking up Uglies, I had trouble staying away from it; I finished it that night. Scott Westerfeld's writing style is so compelling, and that coupled with amazingly real characters and a simple but not so simple world made this book hugely engaging for me. The way his word choice works, it sucks you into the pages, flowing from one word to the next in the smoothest way possible. His characters work with this, having names, personalities, and conversations that seem to keep your eyes moving, maybe even a little faster than before. I would recommend this to anyone looking for one of the most engaging reads of their life, or just a really great book.

Reviewed by Ethan S.

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Bookjacket for The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer

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The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer / Michelle Hodkin

Mara Dyer is a girl who starts to see things that aren't really there after she witnesses the deaths of her best friends. The story is full of romance, suspense, and twists and turns that will make it impossible to put the book down.

I like this book. The beginning is very good and fast paced, but towards the end it changes from something that could happen in reality to a book about her supernatural powers. That threw me off a little bit because I thought it was refreshing that there were no special powers or talents either Mara or Noah had, but then it turned out they did. Other than that though, the book was very good and fast paced. It was very easy to get through and enjoy.

Reviewed by Maggie H.

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Bookjacket for  Under the Never Sky

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Under the Never Sky Under the Never Sky / Veronica Rossi

Under the Never Sky is about a girl, Aria, who wanted to know where her mother was after communication was down. But, in the process of finding her mother, Aria gets kicked out of her home, and falls in love with a boy, Perry, who is stereotypically called a savage. This book shows the journey they take to find Aria's mother, Perry's nephew, and how they fall in love. The most compelling aspect of the book would be all the drama, action, and heartbreak. Just an amazing way to tell a love story!

Reviewed by Victoria D.

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Bookjacket for  Unwind

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Unwind Unwind / Neal Shusterman

Far into the Not-So-Distant future, the conflict between the Pro-Life and Pro-Choice groups boils over into the Heartland War. At its end, the two parties reconcile their differences by establishing the act of “Unwinding,” or “Belated Abortion.” Children must be born to term, but between the agse of 13 and 18 parents have the right to Unwind them, an unspecified process which leaves the child “alive, but as part of someone else.” This is the basic premise for the setting of Unwind.

The story opens on Connor, a teen whose parents have recently signed the order to have him unwound. However, he runs before he can be taken away to be unwound. On the run, he meets two other Unwinds (the semi-derogatory term for teens in Connor's situation): Risa, a ward of the state being unwound to free up space in the foster home, and Lev, a willing unwind who is to be a tithe to his family's church. Banding together, Connor and Risa look to find a way to survive to 18, while Lev seeks to get his life back on track.

The pacing of the novel is very well done, and Shusterman has a certain knack for putting the reader in a character's head. Unfortunately, for all its redeeming points, the backstory (The Heartland War) was just too big a pill to swallow- such a conflict, and its resolution, would be unlikely to occur. As a light-reading piece, Unwind is thoroughly “okay;” but it does show promise as a philosophical discussion piece focusing on the origin and nature of a “soul.” Continue the trilogy with book 2, UnWholly 

Reviewed by Jack K.

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Bookjacket for The War That Saved My Life

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The War That Saved My Life The War That Saved My Life / Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

This book takes place during World War ll. It's about a girl who is named Ada and how she is treated badly by her mother. Ada and her little brother escape from her mother's cruelty by boarding a train with the rest of the evacuees to escape London and their bombs.

I really liked how it caught all the small aspects of the story, such as how it included the air field and how it included butter and told about Ada and her twisted foot. I really liked how she faced her fears. You will enjoy reading her story.

Reviewed by William D.

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Bookjacket for  Watership Down

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Watership Down Watership Down / Richard Adams

Watership Down will suck you in, and from the first page, you won't be able to put it down. The story revolves around two brave brothers, Hazel and Fiver, who lead a party of rabbits to a new home, running away from an unknown danger. The group faces many dangers, and if they don't learn to work together, they will never survive.

I really liked this novel, because it is unpredictable, with many surprising twists and turns.

Reviewed by Ella F.

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Bookjacket for The Winner's Curse

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The Winner's Curse The Winner's Curse / Marie Rutkoski

 The Winner's Curse is about a different past society where all the areas that Valoria conquers, the people soon are sold as servants. Kestrel, the general’s daughter, buys one for a large sum and soon falls in love with him. Little does she know that he is part of a plan to overtake Valoria, and faces something called The Winners Curse, were the price she paid was for so much more than the large sum that she paid.

This book is special because the characters seemed so realistic and the plot line was easy to follow, yet a plot line that I have never read in another book. The writing was not at all confusing, like other books I've read, and there were not too many details, but just enough to make it good.

Reviewed by Annie K.

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Bookjacket for  Wintergirls

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Wintergirls Wintergirls / Laurie Halse Anderson

Reflected through the eyes of a very sick girl, 18-year-old Lia, and tying in the story of her friend who has just died, this book deals openly and clearly with the deep-rooted issues of eating disorders. It doesn’t shy away from the frightening aspects or dance around the emotions or deceptions underlying the problems that allow them to continue. It is a book that will make readers cringe away from how brutally gritty it is. It is terrifyingly honest, though stops short of being too extreme to read. The characters have problems; these problems are shown clearly and discussed, and though this transparent depiction of disorders that are disturbing in their magnitude can make one want to close the book, it never crosses that line, and readers will come back.

Eating disorders are extremely present in modern life, but it takes a certain kind of literary courage which Laurie Halse Anderson possesses to write a story about them. This is an unflinching novel with a cover that is, in a word, eerie. On it, Lia looks as if she is wrapped in plastic and at the same time as if she were frozen, one eye covered by loose hair but the other staring out with astounding intensity. The cover and the subject matter will draw readers in from the start, urging them to learn who this person is, and what made her look at the world with such a lost expression. At times, readers will want to scream at the characters for being so stupid.

Reviewed by Lisa M.

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Bookjacket for  Wonderstruck

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Wonderstruck Wonderstruck / Brian Selznick

Ben is a young boy with a broken heart, and Rose is a young girl with a secret. Both are deaf, but that's not the only connection they have. Brian Selznick weaves an enchanting story, using the perfect balance of pictures and words.

This book is amazing, with its blend of reality and fantasy. I especially liked the detailed illustrations on every few pages

Reviewed by Ella F.

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