Ashes by Kathryn Lasky

A book review by Faith Thompson

 

Gaby has a happy life, living in Berlin, Germany with her astronomer father and violin teacher mother. She and her best friend Rosa are in the same class, her teacher is her idol, and her sister Ulla has a nice boyfriend. They spend their summers at the lake house next door to Albert Einstein’s. But all is not right — World War II has broken out right there in Berlin, and Nazi activists are turning up everywhere, trying to get Gaby and Rosa to join their ranks. And there is something weird about Ulla’s boyfriend, something not quite right. Worst of all, people are burning Gaby’s beloved books!

 

Find it in APL TEEN Fiction YA FIC Lasky, K.

Evil Librarian by Michelle Knudsen

A book review by Madeline Soucie

 

Cynthia’s school has a new librarian and her best friend, Annie, has fallen in love with him. Understandable given his good looks and how he is youngish and very friendly. Plus he’s making Annie a library monitor.

But Cynthia can tell from the beginning something isn’t right about Mr. Gabriel. Could it be his literally memorizing black eyes (creepy), the bad feeling she has about him, or maybe those horns and wings he was sporting when no one was looking. Yeah the new librarian is definitely a demon.

Now on top of being the tech director of the school musical, Sweeney Todd, and not being a fool in front of her crush (who is by the way the  only other person who knows Mr. Gabriel is a demon), Cyn must find a way to step up and destroy Mr. Gabriel and save her best friend before he can suck the life out of the entire school.

 

Find it in APL TEEN Fiction YA FIC Knudsen, M.

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

A book review by Faith Thompson

 

Meg’s father has been missing for years. Too many. And he’s not even on this planet. He’s somewhere deep in the reaches of space. Meg is ready to go find him.

With the help of three mysterious old ladies, her genius four-year-old brother Charles Wallace, and her new friend Calvin, Meg tessers into the unknown to save her dad. She discovers strengths that she didn’t know she had, and that even weaknesses can be used for good. She is the only one who can get them home in one piece and there is only one weapon that can save them. But she doesn’t know what it is!

 

Find it in APL TEEN Fiction YA Large Type L’Engle, M.

Audacity by Melanie Crowder

 

A book review by Madeline Soucie

 

This story is based on the life of Clara Lemlick, a Russian Jewish immigrant who grew up in Russia and then moved with her family to America on the East Side of New York in the early 1900s. Clara worked in a cloth factory in horrible conditions for little pay to help support her family. Her working conditions inspired her to fight for improvement of work conditions for women and never gave up despite the challenges she faced.

Though this is historical fiction, it is based on true events and gives a little bit of an insight of how immigrants worked and lived when they first entered the country in the old days.

 

Find it in APL TEEN Fiction YA FIC Crowder, M.

The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien

A book review by Faith Thompson

 

The deadly Ringwraiths are searching for a hobbit — Frodo Baggins. They want what he carries: The Ring of Power, which will enable the Dark Lord Sauron, its creator, to reclaim his rule. If Sauron recovers his Ring, all will be lost.

Battling Orcs, greedy men, and the Wraiths themselves — and aided by his gardener Sam, a wizard named Gandalf, and a mysterious Ranger named Aragorn — Frodo makes his painfully slow way across Middle-earth to Mordor, Sauron’s kingdom.  This is the only place where the Ring can be destroyed. Its seduction is so great that no one can wield it. All Frodo can hope for is the Ring’s destruction.

 

Find it in APL TEEN Fiction YA FIC Tolkein, J.

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black

A book review by Madeline Soucie        

 

Tana lives in a world where vampires and humans alike are quarantined in cities surrounded by walls called Coldtowns. Once you get into a Coldtown — whether or not you want to be there — there is no getting out.  Good luck surviving  on the inside!

After going to a party one night Tana wakes up in a house full of dead bodies with no idea what happened. Upon exploration she finds her friend/ex-boyfriend tied to a bed and infected and a mysterious new boy chained in the corner. Tana takes it upon herself to free her friend and the mysterious boy and together the three of them make the journey to the nearest Coldtown to admit themselves before they get into serious trouble.

 

Find it in APL TEEN Fiction YA FIC Black, H.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

A book review by Faith Thompson

 

Liesel Meminger has no idea what home is. Her mother is giving her up, and on the train ride to meet her new family, her brother dies suddenly. In the snow by his grave, Liesel discovers a book, half-buried: The Grave Digger’s Handbook. Her foster father teaches her to read, and suddenly all kinds of doors are opening wide to her.

In this book, told interestingly and narrated by Death, we see that even in Nazi Germany, some good still shines through, as a family who was supposed to be part of the Party and fight for Hitler hides a Jew, revolts against book burnings, and loves one another. Liesel and her friend Rudy do some questionable stuff, but all in all I think this is a good book that we can learn a lot from.

 

Find it in APL TEEN Fiction YA FIC Zusak, M.

The Hallowed Ones by Laura Bickle

A book review by Madeline Soucie

 

Katie is Amish and lives in her community with little outside contact. She is coming close to her Rumspringa, a time when teens go out into the world and then come back to be baptized and join the community as adults. Katie was looking forward to experiencing the outside world and all the things it holds that the Amish don’t believe in.

But when a helicopter crashes into the cornfields and there is news of mass population disappearance, the Amish shut their doors to the world believing that God will take care of everything. To ensure their safety no one enters or leaves the community. But when Katie finds a young English man laying outside the fence at nature’s mercy she secretly breaks the Elders’ rule and brings him in to care for him. What comes next is for you to read.

 

Find it in APL TEEN Fiction YA FIC Bickle, L.

The Third Twin by CJ Omololu

A book review by Madeline Soucie            

 

When they were little, Lexi and Ava made up a third twin -Alicia – to blame things on. Someone ate the last cookie or broke a vase? Alicia did it.

Now that they are seniors in high school the twins use Alicia to date boys they usually wouldn’t date and then break it off. It’s all fun and games and no one gets hurt.

That is until boys Alicia dates start showing up dead and Lexi wants Alicia gone. But evidence starts piling up and pointing towards Lexi. Now she must run and try to clear her name and figure out who did this. Figure out if her own twin is behind the murders or if Alicia is real….

 

Find it in APL TEEN Fiction YA FIC Omololu, C.

Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech

A book review by Faith Thompson

 

Sal’s mom left a year ago, and Sal is desperate to see her again and bring her back. Her grandparents decide to take her from Ohio to Idaho for a visit, and along the way, as entertainment, Sal decides to tell them the story of her past year with her friend Phoebe. Phoebe’s mom left, too, but much more mysteriously, and Phoebe is convinced that her mother has been kidnapped by her next door neighbor. Nothing is as it seems, whether it be why Phoebe’s mom is kissing a “lunatic” or even why Sal’s own mother left her. Sprinkled with just the right amount of humor, and a few blackberry kisses, this is a sweet story that I think people should read.

 

Find it in APL TEEN Fiction YA FIC Creech, S.

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