Teen

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Belzhar by Meg Wolitzer

Sent to the therapeutic Wooden Barn school to deal with her depression, Jam Gallahue is chosen for the Selected Topics in English class. Only a select few get chosen and Jam is left wondering why she is there. All she wants is to be back home with her British boyfriend Reeve, watching old comedy sketches. However all of that changes when her teacher gives the class their own journals and with each entry Jam is transported to the Belzhar. Jam, and each of her classmates revisit the time and place they were before their tragedy struck.

The Diviners by Libba Bray

After having embarrassed a prominent member of her small hometown, Evie O’Neill is sent off to New York City to live with her eccentric uncle Will, who is the head curator at a Museum for the Supernatural. With the background set in the vibrant times of the 1920’s, we learn that Evie has the ability to “see” the last thing that happened to any item she touches. When her uncle is called to a murder scene to investigate a cryptic symbol, Evie is suddenly thrown into a mysterious supernatural murder.

100 sideways miles by Andrew Smith

Do not judge this book by its cover. Recommended by our new teen/young adult specialist, this was a fully engaging read with minimal horse action. Finn is a young man who starts the book towards of the end of his junior year in high school. He's not very sexually experienced but his best friend has a special arrangement with a German exchange student that involves money and out-of-the way places. Finn's father wrote a science fiction book that has attracted a fairly large cult following, and the protagonist of that book is also named Finn.

The Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson

Anderson has done it again, this time giving us a realistic portrayal of someone dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and how it affects those around them. Hayley Kincain has been taking care of her father after he comes home Iraq. Her father Andy, running from his demons, has been homeschooling her while they travel across the country for his job as a truck driver. After he returns to his childhood home to offer Hayley more stability, she is enrolled in public school while his PTSD gets worse.

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

Four friends who call themselves the liars, Cadence, Mirren, Johnny and Gat, live a very privileged life and are reunited every summer at their grandfather's estate on a private island off the coast of Massachusetts. Every summer they are inseparable and during their 15th year Cadence and Gat’s relationship goes from that of friends to a budding romance. As the summer nears the end, Cadence suffers a breakdown and is whisked home. Over the course of the next two years Cadence tries to reconnect with her friends to no avail and it isn’t until her 18th summer that she returns to the island.

Skink, No Surrender by Carl Hiaasen

The former governor of Florida who one day disappeared and is now popularly thought to be dead, is introduced to a new audience. You’ve likely grown up on Hoot, Scat, and Hiaasen's other popular books for kids. The books he’s written for older audiences don’t feature any teens, although I imagine they could be popular (my favorite is Sick Puppy). This novel shares themes (and characters) from both. Set in Florida, Richard’s cousin runs off with someone who is clearly not who he represented himself to be when they met online.

Gone by Michael Grant

Imagine if all of a sudden everyone aged 15 and older simply disappeared. For the kids in this small town on the California coast, this is not the only challenge that they have to face. Some weird animal mutations have been noticed - weird feet on birds, flying snakes, and something’s definetly odd about the coyotes! By far the biggest challenge though is some of the kids have new powers - like the ability to throw fire from their hands, levitate objects, and more.

Rot and Ruin by Jonathan Maberry

Post-apocalyptic zombie fiction at its finest - rich in story but not so gruesome that you have to rush to turn the page lest too much uggliness root in your brain. It all begins 14 years after the rise of the dead. Benny was very young when his parents turned and he has always blamed his significanly older brother Tom for running away from them. Tom is now a bounty hunter, or as he prefers to refer to his occupation, a closure specialist.

Far, Far Away by Tom McNeal

This is a mysterious and strange tale of a boy who hears voices, a fearless girl, and the ghost of Jacob Grimm. In their seemingly sleepy town of Never Better, a harmless teenage prank sets off a chain reaction of life-changing events that might only be seen in fairy tales. Part mystery and part fairy tale, this book is whimsical, but also an edge-of-your-seat page turner. Check our catalog.

Are you Experienced? by Jordan Sonnenblick

Rich is fifteen and plays a mean guitar. One night he is magically transported back in time to the Woodstock Music Festival where he meets many of his idols, including Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin. More life shaking, he meets the young man who years later would become his father - and his father’s brother, who died before Rich was even conceived. This is a great book for fans of classic rock music, but its also good for anyone who’s trying to get some perspective on the complex lives that make our parents act the way they do.

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© 2011 Thomas Crane Public Library

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