Review: Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky AlbertalliSimon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Becky Albertalli
Balzer + Bray
Published on April 7, 2015

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About Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging … Continue reading

Review: The Journey by Alleece Balts

Journey by Alleece BaltsThe Journey (The Crowd #2)
Alleece Balts
Published on August 23, 2017

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About The Journey
At nineteen years old, Ella Parker is a star on the rise. With her vocal training at Juilliard underway, she’s more than prepared for a glittering performance career with the rock band Wicked Youth, and anticipating the prospect of becoming engaged to her billionaire boyfriend… Someday.

But when she collapses on stage during a summer concert and receives a chilling diagnosis, the promise of someday suddenly slips away.

Forced to confront her darkest fears, Ella must not only find the courage to go on after her once certain future has disappeared, but also to track down her runaway friend, Lucas, … Continue reading

Review: The Walled City by Ryan Graudin

The Walled City by Ryan GraudinThe Walled City
Ryan Graudin
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Published on September 8, 2015

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About The Walled City
DAI, trying to escape a haunting past, traffics drugs for the most ruthless kingpin in the Walled City. But in order to find the key to his freedom, he needs help from someone with the power to be invisible….

JIN hides under the radar, afraid the wild street gangs will discover her biggest secret: Jin passes as a boy to stay safe. Still, every chance she gets, she searches for her lost sister….

MEI YEE has been trapped in a brothel for the past two … Continue reading

Review: Ungifted by Gordon Korman

Ungifted by Gordon KormanUngifted
Gordon Korman
Balzer + Bray
Published on August 21, 2012

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About Ungifted
The word gifted has never been applied to a kid like Donovan Curtis. It’s usually more like Don’t try this at home. So when the troublemaker pulls a major prank at his middle school, he thinks he’s finally gone too far. But thanks to a mix-up by one of the administrators, instead of getting in trouble, Donovan is sent to the Academy of Scholastic Distinction (ASD), a special program for gifted and talented students.

It wasn’t exactly what Donovan had intended, but there couldn’t be a more perfect hideout for someone like him. That … Continue reading

Review: Once Was Lost by Sara Zarr

Once Was Lost by Sara ZarrOnce Was Lost
Sara Zarr
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Published on October 1, 2009

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About Once Was Lost
Samara Taylor used to believe in miracles. But her mother is in rehab, and her father seems more interested in his congregation than his family. And when a young girl in her small town is kidnapped, her already-worn thread of faith begins to unravel.

Samara Taylor used to believe in miracles. She used to believe in a lot of things. As a pastor’s kid, it’s hard not to buy in to the idea of the perfect family, a loving God, and amazing grace. … Continue reading

Review: Love and First Sight by Josh Sundquist

Love and First Sight by Josh SundquistLove and First Sight
Josh Sundquist
Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Published January 3rd, 2017

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About Love and First Sight

Love is more than meets the eye.

On his first day at a new school, blind sixteen-year-old Will Porter accidentally groped a girl on the stairs, sat on another student in the cafeteria, and somehow drove a classmate to tears. High school can only go up from here, right?

As Will starts to find his footing, he develops a crush on a sweet but shy girl named Cecily. And despite his fear that having a girlfriend will make him inherently dependent on someone sighted, the two of them grow closer and … Continue reading

Review: Here Lies Daniel Tate by Cristin Terrill

Here Lies Daniel Tate by Cristin TerrillHere Lies Daniel Tate
Cristin Terrill
Simon & Schuster
Published on June 6, 2017

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About Here Lies Daniel Tate
When ten-year-old Daniel Tate went missing from one of California’s most elite communities, he left no trace. He simply vanished.

Six years later, when he resurfaces on a snowy street in Vancouver, he’s no longer the same boy. His sandy hair is darker, the freckles are gone, and he’s initially too traumatized to speak, but he’s alive. His overjoyed family brings him home to a world of luxury and comfort he can barely remember. In time, they assure him, he’ll recover his memories; … Continue reading

Review: Between the Lies by Cathy MacPhail

Between the Lies by Cathy MacPhailBetween the Lies
Cathy MacPhail
Kelpies
Published on April 20, 2017

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About Between the Lies
Judith Tremayne is missing. She hasn’t been online, nobody has heard from her. She simply appears to have vanished, until Abbie Knox, a school nobody, receives a message: “I want to come home.” Suddenly everyone knows Abbie’s name. The mean girls and the misfits alike are obsessed with Jude’s disappearance. Abbie finds herself at the centre of a whirlwind of rumours, secrets and lies. Why would popular, fun Jude be messaging loner, loser Abbie? Why would Jude disappear? Can Abbie bring her home? Award-winning author Cathy MacPhail authentically captures the voice … Continue reading

Review: Definitions of Indefinable Things by Whitney Taylor

Definitions of Indefinable Things by Whitney TaylorThe Definition of Indefinable Things
Whitney Taylor
HMH Books for Young Readers
Published April 4, 2017

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About The Definition of Indefinable Things
This heartbreaking, humorous novel is about three teens whose lives intersect in ways they never expected.

Reggie Mason is all too familiar with “the Three Stages of Depression.” She believes she’s unlocked the secret to keeping herself safe: Nobody can hurt you if you never let them in.

Reggie encounters an unexpected challenge to her misanthropy: a Twizzler-chomping, indie film-making narcissist named Snake. Snake’s presence, while reassuring, is not exactly stable—especially since his ex-girlfriend is seven months pregnant. As Reggie … Continue reading

Review: It Looks Like This by Rafi Mittlefehldt

It Looks Like This by Rafi MittlefehldtIt Looks Like This
Rafi Mittlefehldt
Candlewick Press
Published September 6, 2016

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About It Looks Like This
A new state, a new city, a new high school. Mike’s father has already found a new evangelical church for the family to attend, even if Mike and his plainspoken little sister, Toby, don’t want to go. Dad wants Mike to ditch art for sports, to toughen up, but there’s something uneasy behind his demands.

Then Mike meets Sean, the new kid, and “hey” becomes games of basketball, partnering on a French project, hanging out after school. A night at the beach. The fierce colors … Continue reading

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