Teens

Dec 22, 2020

Anne of Green Gables​ by L.M. Montgomery is a beautifully told coming of age story. Anne Shirley is an orphan mistakenly brought home by the Cuthberts living in Avonlea on Prince Edward Island. This story narrates Anne’s life as she grows up and learns to navigate her feelings, relationships, and life. Anne is a nearly perfect character because of her imperfections; she’s always making mistakes or getting into trouble, which makes her relatable to the reader.


For generations, Anne has delighted readers with her big personality and even bigger imagination, and as this was my second read of

Dec 21, 2020

It gave me chills. The setting/tone of this book was eerie and spooky and I kind of felt like a character in the story myself. The ending was unexpected. It's a definite read for those who like thrillers or mysteries.  

Dec 18, 2020

Beatrice Clayborn is a young, powerful sorceress secretly practicing magic in a patriarchal world that doesn’t allow women the freedom of sorcery. Beatrice’s greatest dream is to become a Mage, but her family is relying on her to secure an advantageous marriage in order to avoid financial ruin. There’s only one problem with this — once married, she will be locked into a collar that will cut off her magical powers to protect the children she will inevitably bear. While scouring the bookshops of Bendelton, Beatrice discovers a grimoire that could help her become a Mage, but she is swindled out

Dec 17, 2020

Lovely War, written by Julie Berry, is a historical fiction romance novel narrated by the Greek goddess of love, Aphrodite, as a defense for her infidelity to her husband Hephaestus with Ares, god of war. She speaks of two couples whose stories intertwine with each other, both of whom met during the first World War, and recounts their tragic yet beautiful tale to explain why love and war are attracted to each other and to demonstrate how love requires vulnerability. As she does so, she masterfully weaves together a story of music, acceptance, prejudice, and sacrifice which draws to a close in

Dec 16, 2020

After sixteen-year-old Alice Prewitt’s French grandmother passes away, she finds out that she has inherited an abandoned apartment in Paris. Alice travels to Paris in order to see the apartment for herself, but she makes a shocking discovery — her grandmother had a sister: Adalyn, a resistance worker during WWII. However, Alice has no idea about her great-aunt’s work, and what’s more, Adalyn’s old photos and diary suggest that she was a Nazi sympathizer. With the help of Paul, a handsome French teenager, Alice starts to uncover the truth that Adalyn took to her early grave.


This novel was

Dec 15, 2020

The Alchemist​ by Paulo Coelho is a fiction novel that deals with a boy around eighteen years old named Santiago who wants to complete his Personal Legend/dreams. He starts off by telling readers a dream that he often gets and goes to a Gypsy lady to interpret it. She tells him to go to the pyramids in Egypt where he will find treasure. He wants to travel, and after meeting a stranger, who knows too much about him, he decides to go on this adventure. Along the way, he learns how to live life and lessons that teach him the importance of your soul.


I think this book was amazing and really

Dec 14, 2020

After her mother dies in a car accident, 16-year-old Bree Matthews enters an Early College program at UNC-Chapel Hill. During her first night on campus, she witnesses a demon attack — one that she shouldn’t be able to see. When a mage’s attempt to erase her memory backfires, her own magical powers are awakened and she uncovers an erased memory from the night of her mother’s death. With the help of her peer mentor, Nick, Bree infiltrates the Order of the Round Table, a secret organization consisting of descendants of King Arthur and his knights, as she believes they may have something to do

Dec 11, 2020

The Tower of Nero ​is the fifth and final book in Rick Riordan’s Trials of Apollo series. It follows the Greek god Apollo turned mortal Lester Papadopoulos, as he continues his quest to restore the power of the prophecy, take down the power-hungry Roman emperors, and regain his seat on Mount Olympus. I haven't loved the Trials of Apollo series as much as other Rick Riordan series, but this book was truly excellent. With plenty of cameos and appearances from other beloved characters, this book left me feeling incredibly nostalgic. However, Rick Riordan’s classic humor also shined throughout the

Dec 10, 2020

Ever wondered what happens after the “and they all lived happily ever after?” Emma Theriault is here to tell you in her 352 page novel that continues Beauty and her Beast’s story against the backdrop of the French Revolution. Belle, who has chosen to not take the title of princess after marrying her prince, is torn between the world of her past as a commoner and her future as the wife of a royal. Her inner turmoil is only amplified by the stirrings of revolution threatening to overtake Europe. Belle must use her unique upbringing to heal her country and root out betrayal within her own circles

Dec 10, 2020

Olivia is D O N E with blending into the background and she is done letting insecurities hold her back. In light of this, she makes a F*ck it list. What started as a list of things she's wanted to do, turned into so much more. This captivating novel written by Francina Simone gives light to what it means to be confident, and what it means to make mistakes.    


To me, the most compelling aspect of this book was two specific things. The first being how relatable it was. I know what it is like to feel extremely insecure. I also know what it is like to make so many mistakes and feel like there

Dec 9, 2020

Miles Morales Spider-Man by Jason Reynolds is a fiction novel with a boy named Miles who is Spider-Man. He mourns over the recent death of his uncle, but when he goes to school, he feels his spidey senses go off. He doesn’t know why, but something is off in his very normal school. He has a crush on a girl named Alicia, but he is always distracted or can’t talk to her because he is awkward. As he deals with his love quarrel, he needs to figure out why he is feeling so off in school and who blamed him for stealing out of a store he worked in.


I really enjoyed the book, but I feel like it

Dec 9, 2020

As a servant, silence and obedience is the only way Seol can safely and peacefully spend her days. Assigned to a young inspector, she pledges loyalty to him who seems to welcome her curiosity. However, her loyalty is tested when he becomes the prime suspect of the murder case.     


Personally, the most compelling aspect of this book is the first person inner dialogue or conflict the main character has. The descriptions and thoughts of the character are written realistically, with just enough detail to paint the story. The way she analyzes clues and how she manages to be involved despite

Dec 8, 2020

Oryx and Crake ​is a dystopian novel written by Margaret Atwood, the writer of ​The Handmaid’s Tale. ​Set in the post-apocalyptic future, this book follows Snowman, the last remaining human, as he navigates surviving in a world with few supplies and genetically mutated animals trying to kill him. The only ones to keep him company are a new breed of people called the Crakers, who are the creation of Snowman’s old friend Crake. The story constantly flips perspective between Snowman surviving in the wild and his former self, once known as Jimmy, as he grows up alongside Crake and meets a mutual

Traitor by Amanda McCrina "Betrayal is a matter of life and death"

Traitor

5
Rated by
Dec 7, 2020

Traitor highlights the societal division and question of morality that was prominent during World War II. In this novel, the lives of two teenagers, a Ukrainian orphan named Aleksey who fights to protect his brother and stay alive, and Tolya, a half-Polish, half-Ukrainian seventeen year old who is unsure of where his loyalties lies. As the lives of these two teenagers intertwine, they encounter both old and new, good and bad, all the while trying to stay alive in the midst of not only an international war, but an internal war.     


The most compelling aspect of this book was how the lives

Dec 7, 2020

Fahrenheit 451 is a science fiction novel written by Ray Bradbury in 1953.  The genre of this book is adventure and science fiction.  The novel is set in a futuristic dystopian society that burns  books in order to control dangerous ideas and concepts.  The novel tells the story of Guy Montag.  Guy Montag is a fireman, whose job is not to protect people but to protect them from books by burning them. Montag meets Clarisse, a smart and curious girl.  Clarisse questions everything about life, happiness, and love. Over the next few days, Montag experiences some disturbing events.  His wife

Dec 4, 2020

The Night Country is the chilling sequel to Melissa Albert’s The Hazel Wood. After returning to New York City from the Hinterland, Alice, an ex-Story, attempts to live a normal, human life. Even though Hinterland citizens are still trickling into New York, Alice vows to leave her past behind. However, she quickly learns that escaping the Hinterland was far from the end — Hinterland characters are being slaughtered, one after another. Something sinister lies behind the murders, and Alice is running out of time to find the killer. Tick, tock, tick, tock. Can you hear the hidden clock?


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Dec 3, 2020

Charlie is a fantasy football geek who cheers for the LA Bulldogs. The Bulldogs are so bad that their nickname is “the dogs.” Charlie and his best friend Anna, who is also a huge Bulldogs fan, love watching all of the games together. Luckily, Anna’s grandfather is the owner of the LA Bulldogs. Charlie attends a game with him and shares some of his thoughts to improve the team and suggests to sign an aging quarterback that is going under the radar. Mr. Warren, Anna’s grandfather, signs the quarterback and the team starts to get the success they have been wanting. Charlie becomes a football

Cover photo of the book Wonder

Wonder

5
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Dec 2, 2020

Auggie is going to school for the first time and he is completely petrified. August Pullman has had 27 surgeries to help him hear, breathe, see, and talk. He has been homeschooled for his whole life by his mom and now he is starting middle school in an actual school. Auggie makes some friends and some enemies in middle school. While Auggie is going to middle school, his sister, Via, is starting high school, when she finds out her only best friend abandons her. At school, Auggie meets Jack, Will and Julian but only becomes friends with one of them, while the other makes fun of Auggie. Do you

Dec 1, 2020

In the Hall with the Knife​ by Diana Peterfreund is a teen fiction mystery novel about the death of Blackbrook Academy’s Headmaster Boddy. When a vicious winter storm strikes the coast of Maine, where Blackbrook Academy is located, a group of students and staff are stranded in one of the safest buildings on the campus: the Tudor House. The crew of students is made up of Beth “Peacock” Picach (the star athlete), Scarlett Mistry (the queen bee), Finn Plum (the scientist), Orchid McKee (the wallflower), Vaughn Green (the “townie”), and Sam “Mustard” Maestor (a military academy transfer). They are

Nov 30, 2020

Lira has seventeen hearts in her bedroom. As a siren, she kills a human prince and takes his heart every year on her birthday. By doing so, she proves that she will be strong enough to take over her mother’s throne and become queen one day. However, after Lira disobeys her mother, she is punished by being transformed into a human — one of the creatures she hates the most. To win back her mother’s favor, Lira must claim the heart of Prince Elian, an infamous siren-killer and the heir to the most powerful kingdom in the land. Yet, as they set off on a quest to find an ancient artifact with the

Nov 25, 2020

The Quantum Weirdness of the Almost-Kiss​ was a largely enjoyable read with only a few drawbacks. It was a very good romantic book. I was very invested in its main romantic plot. Unlike some other romance books I’ve read, this one felt believable. The relationship between Caleb and Evie was really interesting and I didn’t feel like many aspects of it felt forced. I genuinely enjoyed it. The supporting cast was small, so most of the important characters had more time to develop.


The plot was also very interesting, but I felt like it only delivered at face value. I found myself bored at

Nov 24, 2020

The Last Girlfriend on Earth: And Other Love Stories ​by Simon Rich is a collection of eclectic and often surreal short stories centering around love and romance. For the most part, I very much enjoyed this book. It was an incredibly fast read, but I thought that it ultimately matched the book’s funny and slapdash style.  Typically I wouldn’t consider a book’s being “slapdash” to be a good thing, but with ​The Last Girlfriend on Earth ​I didn’t really have a problem with it. In fact, I think the book’s thrown together nature adds to its predominantly light and breezy feeling. ​The Last

Cover photo of the book Wench

Wench

3
Rated by
Nov 23, 2020

Wench was a promising title that ultimately fell short for me. I loved the idea of following a tavern wench as she tried to get back her tavern and found it was really interesting. I was also pleasantly surprised by the role magic played in the story. However, the book ultimately failed to please me. Tanya was the only character who had a real arc. Other characters felt unimportant and under-developed. They had very little backstory and served no purpose beyond helping Tanya. They didn’t feel like real people. Relationships also suffered. Most of the relationships Tanya has by the end of the

Nov 20, 2020

Timminy, not Timothy, is moving into the country to some boring town, and has to start middle school there. He knows that middle school will be hard, because he has the height of a 2nd grader.  As a surprise, his parents get him a dog named Maxi. They discover that Maxi is deaf. Timminy also makes a blind friend named Abby. Abby does not let her being blind stop her from being a middle schooler. Will Timminy get through middle school without being made fun of for his height, or will he start living in a gym locker? Read Maxi’s Secrets (Or, What You Can Learn From a Dog) to find out!


I

Nov 19, 2020

Do you love action movies? Do the superheroes Captain America, Iron Man, Spider-Man, Dr. Strange, Black Panther, and many more bring joy to you? Do you follow movies created by Marvel Studios and the Avengers’ movies? If yes, Avengers Infinity War is a must-see movie for you! Featuring numerous superheroes from different movies created by Marvel Studios, the Avengers must all work together to stop evil galactic supremacist Thanos from obtaining all 6 Infinity Stones, where all it takes is one snap of the finger to wipe out half of all living beings in the Universe. These 6 Infinity Stones are

Nov 18, 2020

Where the Crawdads Sing ​by Delia Owens is a fiction novel about a girl named Kya Clark and the townspeople living in Barkley Cove, a small North Carolina coast town. The novel alternates between two different timelines: one following Kya throughout her childhood, and the other detailing the progression of a murder investigation in Barkley Cove. As a child, Kya is left to fend for herself living in her family’s shack located in a marsh on the outskirts of the coast town. She loves the marsh environment around her and finds comfort in nature. However, when she starts attracting the attention of

Cover photo of the book Scythe

Scythe

4
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Nov 16, 2020

Scythe​ is the first book in ​Neal Shusterman’s Arc of a Scythe series. It is young adult dystopian fiction and the story follows Citra and Rowan, two teenagers living in a futuristic world in which humanity has conquered death. Citra and Rowan’s Earth is ruled by the benevolent Thunderhead, an evolved form of the Internet that has eradicated all of the problems that once tormented humanity (war, sickness, hunger, etc.). Even death is impossible thanks to revival centers that cover the planet. Humanity has answered every question and solved every problem, now only one vital task remains

Nov 12, 2020

Emma Woodhouse is a coding genius who appreciates numbers more than most people; numbers were simple and easy while people were just messy and over-complex. When her sister sparks an idea, Emma decides to build on a code that would determine the person of best compatibility to date as a submission to a coding competition. While some were skeptical at first, who could believe a code could tell you the best person to date, Emma was certain that her code was flawless. But after Emma runs into a few complications, breakups, cruel bets, betrayal, and not to mention a weird warm feeling every time

Nov 9, 2020

Harry Potter thinks he is just a normal ten-year old boy living at his uncle and aunt’s house. Harry thinks that his life is terrible, but what he does not know is that his life is about to get a whole lot more interesting. Harry finds out he is a wizard! When he goes to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he becomes friends with Ron and Hermione. The Sorcerer’s Stone is moved, which gives the wizard immortality. The Dark Lord is trying to steal the Sorcerer's Stone and Harry Potter is trying to protect it. Will Harry defeat Voldemort, and save the Wizarding World, or will he fail?

Nov 5, 2020

John Urschel played professional football and is completing his Ph.D. at Harvard University in Mathematics. This memoir reveals John’s challenges of living with divorced parents, trying to become a math major and earning a Ph.D., and making it to the National Football League. Mr. Urschel’s biography is heart-warming and shows the ups and downs of his journey of making it to the NFL and earning a Ph.D. Urschel was interested in math at a very young age and loved solving math problems. It wasn’t until later in middle school that Urschel became interested in football. The story is told in