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“Will you be my reader?”

A mysterious wooden box arrived at the office. The only clue to its contents was the note initialed “SD” woven through its simple twine bow. Upon opening it, I quickly learned who was trying to win me over with this mystery box: the queen of YA romance herself, Sarah Dessen! On the inside of the […]

Review of When My Sister Started Kissing

When My Sister Started Kissing by Helen Frost Intermediate, Middle School    Ferguson/Farrar    195 pp. 3/17    978-0-374-30303-7    $16.99    g Claire and Abigail have few memories of their mother — she died when they were very young — but at their family’s lakeside cabin, the girls are surrounded by the poetry, art, […]

Reviews of the 2017 Boston Globe–Horn Book Fiction and Poetry Award Winner and Honor Books

Fiction and Poetry Winner The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas High School    Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins    453 pp. 2/17    978-0-06-249853-3    $17.99 Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter lives a life many African American teenagers can relate to: a life of double consciousness. Caught between her rough, predominantly black neighborhood and the “proper,” predominantly white […]

Review of Funny Girl: Funniest. Stories. Ever.

Funny Girl: Funniest. Stories. Ever. edited by Betsy Bird Intermediate, Middle School    Viking    205 pp.    g 5/17    978-0-451-477-316    $16.99 e-book ed.  978-0-698-409-446    $10.99 Fuse #8 blogger Bird’s compilation includes twenty-eight entries from “laugh-out-loud funny” female children’s book creators, whom Bird argues are underrepresented in the publishing industry, plus a […]

Big little world

Roger’s post this morning about cozy mysteries reminded me that I spent my Sunday devouring Liane Moriarty‘s Big Little Lies. I loved the recent HBO miniseries starring Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, and Shailene Woodley, and the book is just as thoroughly enjoyable. My boyfriend asked me which I liked better, and I replied, “I like […]

Review of We Come Apart

We Come Apart by Brian Conaghan and Sarah Crossan High School    Bloomsbury    312 pp.    g 6/17    978-1-68119-275-8    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-68119-276-5    $12.99 Two troubled UK teens forge an unlikely romance in this novel in verse. Jess, a jaded tough girl, nicked some cosmetics with friends who let her take […]

Review of Clayton Byrd Goes Underground

Clayton Byrd Goes Underground by Rita Williams-Garcia Intermediate, Middle School    Amistad/HarperCollins    166 pp.    g 5/17    978-0-06-221591-8    $16.99 e-book ed.  978-0-06-221594-9    $9.34 “Electric blues sparks jumped out into the night” when Cool Papa Byrd plays his guitar in Washington Square Park, and all grandson Clayton wants is to be waved […]

Review of This Would Make a Good Story Someday

This Would Make a Good Story Someday by Dana Alison Levy Intermediate, Middle School    Delacorte    308 pp.    g 5/17    978-1-101-93817-1    $16.99 Library ed.  978-1-101-93818-8    $19.99 e-book ed  978-1-101-93819-5    $10.99 Twelve-year-old aspiring writer Sara is less than thrilled when Mimi, one of her two mothers, wins a writing fellowship […]

YA Passport with Rosalyn Eves and Heidi Heilig

Trident Booksellers & Café continued its YA Passport event series with Rosalyn Eves, author of Blood Rose Rebellion, and Heidi Heilig, author of The Girl from Everywhere and its sequel The Ship Beyond Time last week. The talk, hosted by fellow author Mackenzi Lee, centered on the interaction between fantasy and history, elements present in […]

Review of Lion Island: Cuba’s Warrior of Words

Lion Island: Cuba’s Warrior of Words by Margarita Engle Middle School    Atheneum    163 pp. 8/16    978-1-4814-6112-2    $16.99    g e-book ed.  978-1-4814-6114-6    $10.99 In this last chapter in her series of verse novels about the struggle “against forced labor in nineteenth-century Cuba” (The Poet Slave of Cuba: A Biography of Juan Francisco Manzano, rev. 7/06, and […]