Thursday, April 17, 2014

Celebrate Teen Literature Day!

Today is Celebrate Teen Literature Day, and the nominations for the Teens' Top 10 have just been announced. The Teens' Top 10 is a list voted on by teens about their favorite books of the previous year. Voting for the top 10 begins August 15 and runs through Teen Read Week in October. Readers ages 12-18 may vote at www.ala.org/yalsa/reads4teens. Download a PDF copy of the nominees here, or check out the list below:

The Nightmare Affair by Mindee Arnett
Being the only Nightmare at Arkwell Academy, a boarding school for "magickind," sixteen-year-old Destiny Everhart feeds on the dreams of others, working with a handsome human student to find a killer.
Of Triton by Anna Banks
When her mother's reappearance in the Syrena world turns the two kingdoms -- Poseidon and Triton -- against one another, Emma must risk everything she loves and reveal herself -- and her Gift -- to save a people she's never known.
Siege and Storm by Leah Bardugo
Hunted across the True Sea and haunted by the lives she took on the Fold, Alina must try to make a life with Mal in an unfamiliar land, all while keeping her identity as the Sun Summoner a secret.

Love in the Time of Global Warming by Francesca Lia Block
After a devastating earthquake destroys the West Coast, causing seventeen-year-old Penelope to lose her home, her parents, and her ten-year-old brother, she navigates a dark world, holding hope and love in her hands and refusing to be defeated.

The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau
Sixteen-year-old Malencia (Cia) Vale is chosen to participate in The Testing to attend the University; however, Cia is fearful when she figures out her friends who do not pass The Testing are disappearing.

The Eye of Minds by James Dashner
Michael is a skilled internet gamer in a world of advanced technology. When a cyber-terrorist begins to threaten players, Michael is called upon to seek him and his secrets out.

Earth Girl by Janet Edwards
Only the disabled are living on Earth in 2788. Eighteen-year-old Jarra decides she wants to prove to the norms that she is the same as they are.

The Clockwork Scarab by Colleen Gleason
In 1889 London young women are turning up dead, and Evaline Stoker, relative of Bram, and Mina Holmes, niece of Sherlock, are summoned to investigate the clue of the not-so-ancient Egyptian scarabs--but where does a time traveler fit in?

Maybe I Will by Laurie Gray
The story describes how one secret act of violence can change everything: how best friends can vanish when needed most; how the parents, teachers, counselors, and police officers who are supposed to help may prove skeptical; how difficult it is to know who to trust and how easy it is to slip into drinking, stealing, and lying; how the choice may come down to ending it all or starting over. Throughout it all, the gender of the protagonist remains ambiguous, emphasizing that so many of these acts of violence aren't about gender or sex.

The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die by April Henry
She doesn't know who she is. She doesn't know where she is, or why. All she knows when she comes to in a ransacked cabin is that there are two men arguing over whether or not to kill her. And that she must run. Follow Cady and Ty (her accidental savior turned companion), as they race against the clock to stay alive.

Splintered by A.G. Howard
A descendant of the inspiration for Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, sixteen-year-old Alyssa Gardner fears she is mentally ill like her mother until she finds that Wonderland is real and, if she passes a series of tests to fix Alice's mistakes, she may save her family from their curse.

Teardrop by Lauren Kate
Since Eureka's mother drowned, she wishes she were dead too, but after discovering that an ancient book is more than a story Eureka begins to believe that Ander is right about her being involved in strange things--and in grave danger.

Openly Straight by Bill Konigsberg
Tired of being known as "the gay kid", Rafe Goldberg decides to assume a new persona when he goes east and enters an elite Massachusetts prep school--but trying to deny his identity has both complications and unexpected consequences.

Monument 14: Sky on Fire by Emmy Laybourne
A group of survivors, originally trapped together in a superstore by a series of escalating disasters, has split in two--one group heading to Denver airport on a repaired school bus, the other remaining in the Sanctuary trying to rebuild the community they lost. But the world outside is dark and filled with dangerous chemicals that turn people into bloodthirsty monsters.

Six Months Later by Natalie D. Richards
Chloe didn't think about it much when she nodded off in study hall on that sleepy summer day. But when she wakes up, snow is on the ground and she can't remember the last six months of her life. Before, she'd been a mediocre student. Now, she's on track for valedictorian and being recruited by Ivy League schools. Before, she never had a chance with super jock Blake. Now he's her boyfriend. Before, she and Maggie were inseparable. Now her best friend won't speak to her. What happened to her? And why can't she remember?

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
Set over the course of one school year in 1986, this is the story of two star-crossed misfits--smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try.

This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales
Nearly a year after a failed suicide attempt, sixteen-year-old Elise discovers that she has the passion, and the talent, to be a disc jockey.

Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson
At age eight, David watched as his father was killed by an Epic, a human with superhuman powers, and now, ten years later, he joins the Reckoners--the only people who are trying to kill the Epics and end their tyranny.

The Rithmatist by Brandon Sanderson
As Wild Chalklings threaten the American Isles and Rithmatists are humanity's only defense, Joel can only watch as Rithmatist students learn the magical art that he would do anything to practice.

This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith
Perfect strangers Graham Larkin and Ellie O'Neill meet online when Graham accidentally sends Ellie an e-mail about his pet pig, Wilbur. The two 17-year-olds strike up an e-mail relationship from opposite sides of the country and don't even know each other's first names. What's more, Ellie doesn't know Graham is a famous actor, and Graham doesn't know about the big secret in Ellie's family tree. When the relationship goes from online to in-person, they find out whether their relationship can be the real thing.

Winger by Andrew Smith
Two years younger than his classmates at a prestigious boarding school, fourteen-year-old Ryan Dean West grapples with living in the dorm for troublemakers, falling for his female best friend who thinks of him as just a kid, and playing wing on the Varsity rugby team with some of his frightening new dorm-mates.

A Midsummer Night's Scream by R.L. Stine
Decades after the filming of a horror movie is halted in the wake of three actor deaths and rumors about a haunted set, Claire, the daughter of a failing studio head, helps with a production on the same site.

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April TucholkeViolet is in love with River, a mysterious seventeen-year-old stranger renting the guest house behind the rotting seaside mansion where Violet lives, but when eerie, grim events begin to happen, Violet recalls her grandmother's frequent warnings about the devil and wonders if River is evil.

In the Shadow of Blackbirds by Cat Winters
In San Diego in 1918, as deadly influenza and World War I take their toll, sixteen-year-old Mary Shelley Black watches desperate mourners flock to séances and spirit photographers for comfort and, despite her scientific leanings, must consider if ghosts are real when her first love, killed in battle, returns.

The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
Cassie Sullivan, the survivor of an alien invasion, must rescue her young brother from the enemy with help from a boy who may be one of them.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Teen review of "Etiquette & Espionage" by Gail Carriger

Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger
RANDALL OAKS TEEN CARRIGER

I really love steampunk, so I’m always looking out for good steampunk YA.When I first saw Etiquette & Espionage, I knew I had to get it. I’ve been wanting to read Gail Carriger’s Parasol Protectorate series, and this being a prequel of sorts, I just couldn’t resist. And if the Parasol Protectorate books are anything like Etiquette & Espionage, I’m going to have to read those really soon.

All the steampunk I’ve read so far has been either quite dark or some elements of steampunk are there, but not much. Compared to those other titles, Etiquette & Espionage blows them out of the water. Everything was so whimsical and fantastic! The names were absolutely ridiculous and I just loved reading them (favorite: Lord Dingleproops). The language was just impeccable and unlike anything I’ve ever read. The setting had everything a steampunk novel needs, from giant floating dirigibles, to automatons, to mechanimals. That’s right, our main character befriends a tiny steampunk patchwork dachshund, which she names Bumbersnoot. He was by far my favorite character.

And speaking of characters, I absolutely adored Sophronia. She’s highly intelligent and funny with knack for getting in and out of trouble. Her entrance at the very beginning of the novel is by far one of my favorite beginnings of a book ever. I mean, she comes tumbling out of a dumb-waiter, accidentally launching pudding into the air. It’s just–it’s just great. I also loved the idea for the finishing school. It was just so amusing to me! Girls are learning to become proper ladies, working on curtsies and dancing and other forms of etiquette, while also learning how to become intelligencers. I just found this to be hilarious for some reason.

In order to finish, you have to complete a mission. Of course, one of the older girls, Monique, doesn’t exactly finish, and that’s where Sophronia and her friend Dimity come in. I loved the mystery of it and the lengths that Sophronia went to find this mysterious device that Monique hid, causing her mission to fail. The relationship between those two was infuriating as it was amusing.

All in all, Etiquette & Espionage was one of the most delightful books I have ever read. I was laughing and smiling so much that after a while, my face kind of began to hurt. If you love steampunk and incredible amounts of whimsy, then definitely pick up a copy. You won’t regret it.

- Caroline
Originally posted on The Attic blog.

Monday, March 24, 2014

New books to read over Spring Break

Divergent: Official Illustrated Movie Companion
by Kate Egan
Veronica Roth's #1 New York Times bestselling novel Divergent is now a major motion picture starring Shailene Woodley, Theo James, and Kate Winslet! With never-before-seen photos; personal interviews with the directors, actors, and writers; and exclusive extras, this lush, oversize volume is a true behind-the-scenes look at the filming of Divergent.

Panic by Lauren Oliver
In the poor town of Carp, New York, a group of teens enters a high-stakes game that involves a series of secretive, possibly deadly challenges throughout the summer, with the winner receiving more than $50,000--enough money to start a new life.

The Glass Casket by McCormick Templeman
After the brutal murder of her cousin, everything changes for sixteen-year-old Rowan, who must not only seek the evil forces responsible before they destroy her family and village, but also set aside her studies when she becomes betrothed to her best friend, Tom. Sequel to The Little Woods.

Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith
Austin Szerba narrates the end of humanity as he and his best friend Robby accidentally unleash an army of giant, unstoppable bugs and uncover the secrets of a decades-old experiment gone terribly wrong.

The Tyrant's Daughter by J.C. Carleson
Exiled to the United States after her father, a Middle Eastern dictator, is killed in a coup, fifteen-year-old Laila must cope with a completely new way of life, the truth of her father's regime, and her mother and brother's ways of adjusting.

The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski
An aristocratic girl who is a member of a warmongering and enslaving empire purchases a slave, an act that sets in motion a rebellion that might overthrow her world as well as her heart.

Better Off Friends by Elizabeth Eulberg
Macallan and Levi are best friends from the first day they meet in seventh grade, but over the years their close friendship keeps interfering with their dating life because everyone else regards them as a couple.

Forever by Karen Ann Hopkins
Now that Rose is pregnant by her love, Amish boy Noah, she hopes that nothing can tear them apart, but in order to achieve their "happily-ever-after," they must handle the repercussions of past mistakes. Third in a series, following Temptation and Belonging.

This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl by Esther Earl
A memoir told through the journals, letters, and stories of young cancer patient Esther Earl.

Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out by Susan Kuklin
Takes an honest look at the life, love, and struggles of transgender teens. Author and photographer Susan Kuklin met and interviewed six transgender or gender-neutral young adults and used her considerable skills to represent them thoughtfully and respectfully before, during, and after their personal acknowledgment of gender preference.

Bright Before Sunrise by Tiffany Schmidt
Jonah and Brighton are about to have the most awkwardly awful night of their lives. For Jonah, every aspect of his new life reminds him of what he has had to give up. All he wants is to be left alone. Brighton is popular, pretty, and always there to help anyone, but has no idea of what she wants for herself.

Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge
Betrothed to the demon who rules her country and trained all her life to kill him, seventeen-year-old Nyx Triskelion must now fulfill her destiny and move to the castle to be his wife.

Evertrue by Brodi Ashton
Nikki and Jack take on the underworld to free themselves of the Everneath's power. Third in the series, following Everneath and Everbound.

The In-Between by Barbara Stewart
Fourteen-year-old Elanor Moss's suicide attempt leads her family toward a new start in New York, but tragedy strikes before they arrive and while grieving and recovering Ellie meets Madeline Torus, a mysterious girl who becomes more than a best friend--and worst enemy.

Perfect Lies by Kiersten White
Sisters Anie and Fia have had their abilites manipulated by the Keane Foundation for too long--and now they're ready to fight back against the twisted organization that has been using them as pawns. Sequel to Mind Games.

Third Strike by Heather Brewer
Joss is given a mission to eradicate vampires in his home town of Santa Carla, where he will need to protect his family including cousin Henry, who still carries a grudge. Third book in The Slayer Chronicles series.

Warrior by Ellen Oh
Kira, the yellow-eyed demon slayer of Hansong, continues her quest to find the lost treasures of the dragon king's prophecy, save her cousin, the prince, unite her kingdom, and defeat the demon lord. Sequel to Prophecy.

When I Was the Greatest by Jason Reynolds
Ali lives in Bed-Stuy, a Brooklyn neighborhood known for guns and drugs, but he and his sister, Jazz, and their neighbors, Needles and Noodles, stay out of trouble until they go to the wrong party, where one gets badly hurt and another leaves with a target on his back.

White Hot Kiss by Jennifer Armentrout
One kiss could be the last. Seventeen year old Layla just wants to be normal. But with a kiss that kills anything with a soul, she's anything but normal. Half demon, half gargoyle, Layla has abilities no one else possesses. Raised among the Wardens, a race of gargoyles tasked with hunting demons and keeping humanity safe, Layla tries to fit in, but that means hiding her own dark side from those she loves the most.

The Worlds We Make by Megan Crewe
In the conclusion to The Fallen World trilogy, Kaelyn and her friends must protect the cure they have found from deadly enemies while searching for a true safe haven.

Don't Even Think About It by Sarah Mlynowski
What happens when a group of Tribeca high school kids go in for flu shots ... and end up being able to read each others' minds.

Freak City by Kathrin Schrocke
Mika's heart is broken, until he sees Leah. A smart, beautiful, and brave girl, Leah has been deaf since birth. When Mika meets her for the first time, he feels something electric. They cannot communicate, so Mika decides to take a sign language course. His family and friends are skeptical, and Mika soon grows weary, too. The world of deaf people is so much different than his own. Can their two worlds intersect? There is also Sandra, Mika's ex-girlfriend, who he cannot seem to get over. But Mika cannot shake that Leah has captured his heart...Author Kathrin Schrocke tells the story of two teens and their tender, quirky love--a love so extraordinary it can bring two worlds together.

Steadfast by Claudia Gray
Nadia must stop the evil sorceress Elizabeth before she lures the One Beneath to Captive's Sound, destroying the town and everyone Nadia holds dear at the same time. Sequel to Spellcaster.

Year of Mistaken Discoveries by Eileen Cook
Partnered with a boy named Brody, high school senior Avery embarks on a class project to find her birth mother, after Avery's former best friend, also adopted, dies.