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Adult Books 4 Teens
Inside Adult Books 4 Teens

Decoded

decoded

Mai Jia has published three novels and a novella in his native China and has won several awards for them. But Decoded (2002) marks the first time his work has been published in English, and based on this one, we can only hope the rest of his work isn’t far behind. Some readers may be [...]

Touchstones of American History

The Museum of Extraordinary Things

A new novel by Alice Hoffman is always cause for celebration. The Museum of Extraordinary Things conjures up the sights and sounds of early 20th century, Gilded Age Coney Island and New York City. Hoffman’s many teen readers will appreciate the magical love-at-first-sight between her two young protagonists, and fans of The Night Circus will [...]

Young Women in 19th Century America

The Invention of Wings

The Secret Life of Bees is a phenomenon with teen readers, especially girls. It hardly needs suggesting from us, does it? They just seem to know about it. It always comes up as a peer recommendation when I lead booktalk sessions with the 9th graders in my library. I wonder how that happens, 12 years [...]

The Pieces We Keep

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Still trying to catch up on all those great 2013 books we recommended? Sorry, we’ve still got a few more to add to that pile. Today, we have Kristina McMorris’s fabulous new novel, The Pieces We Keep. In this her third novel, McMorris returns to the World War II setting of each of her previous [...]

Victorian Violence

levine_hyde

Robert Louis Stevenson published The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde in 1886, and the next year Arthur Conan Doyle published A Study in Scarlet, the first novel to feature Sherlock Holmes–both works set in the heart of London. And in September of 1888, the serial killer known as Jack the Ripper began [...]

Women at War

I Shall Be Near to You

Two highly recommended historical novels today. I Shall Be Near to You is, at its heart, a compelling love story. It features a strong heroine, so in love with her husband that she disguises herself as a man to accompany him into the horrors of the Civil War. I’m afraid its cover art may limit the [...]

Confessions of Marie Antionette

confessions of marie a

Confessions of Marie Antionette brings to a close Juliet Grey’s trilogy on that perenially popular, if still misunderstood, monarch. We reviewed the first two novels in the trilogy, Becoming Marie Antionette and Days of Splendor, Days of Sorrow, and we recommend this volume just as strongly. For teen readers who love to get lost in a [...]

The Mysterious Death of Miss Jane Austen

jane austen

Let’s see: this year we’ve had a reimagining of Pride and Prejudice from the perspective of the Bennets’ maid and a modern rewrite of Sense and Sensibility. This year also saw the release of a film of Shannon Hale’s Austenland (the sequel of which, by the way, this blog reviewed). And today we have yet another [...]

Family, for Better or Worse

Mother, Mother

Today we review three very different novels about families, none of them easy. The families, that is! Koren Zailckas is well-known for her memoir Smashed: Story of a Drunken Girlhood (Viking, 2005). Mother, Mother is her first novel, and it introduces a doozy of a family dynamic. The story includes elements of suspense, psychological thriller and [...]

The Daylight Gate (plus more on Best Ofs)

daylight gate

As promised, we have a review today of Jeanette Winterson’s The Daylight Gate, one of the sixteen fiction books that have made more than one “best of” list so far this year. In other news, also as promised I took a look at A Constellation of Vital Phenomena and Tenth of December, and unfortunately I [...]