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Adult Books 4 Teens
Inside Adult Books 4 Teens

Truth & Responsibility

At the Bottom of Everything

All three of today’s books are concerned with learning the truth and/or facing responsibility. In Ben Dolnick‘s At the Bottom of Everything, young Adam is trying to avoid facing the mistake he and his best friend made as teenagers. If he could only take responsibility for it, he would be better off. So would his [...]

Paul Halter

crimson fog

Two things I’m always on the look out for (both in my personal reading and for this blog) are books in translation and books published by small presses. It’s hard enough to keep up with all of the English language books coming out of major houses, but the extra work is worth the effort when you [...]

Hunting Season

Hunting Season

Mirta Ojito won a shared Pulitzer for national reporting in 2001 for a New York Times series of articles about race in America. Her new book turns to the topic of immigration reform. It is a nonfiction account of a group of teenagers who killed an Ecuadoren immigrant one November night 5 years ago in [...]

Biographies

drama high

Today we have two very different, almost opposite, biographies about acting, written by journalists: one a cautionary tale of talent wasted, the other an  inspirational story of talent emergent.  Sokolove’s Drama High tells the inspiring story of a high school drama teacher pushing his students toward success, while Edwards’s Last Night at the Viper Room [...]

Rustication

rustication

I had planned on writing a  post today on Publisher’s Weekly‘s  Best of 2013 list, but when I started looking through it, I realized that many of the titles on their list that I’d like to talk about are either currently out with our reviewers, or haven’t been posted yet. So, instead I’m going to [...]

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves

We are all completely beside ourselves

Karen Joy Fowler’s new book actually came out in May, but this is definitely a case of better late than never. The premise of the book is terrific, but it is the voice that makes it extraordinary. Rosemary, lively, wisecracking, too smart for her own good, is our narrator. She starts in the middle — [...]

Longbourn

Longbourn

Jane Austen lovers are in for quite a treat. Oh wait, make that Jane Austen lovers and Downton Abbey fans. Oh yes, buy multiple copies because Longbourn has arrived at last. Imagine that among the Bennet family servants there is one just about the same age as Elizabeth. Sarah is a hard worker, solid and [...]

Community and Poverty

Men we Reaped

We review two books today, both set in very specific communities overshadowed by poverty and tragedy. Let’s start with Men We Reaped, a memoir by Jesmyn Ward. Ward’s fierce, poetic debut novel, Salvage the Bones, won the National Book Award and a 2012 Alex Award. It follows a pregnant teenage girl and her family through [...]

The Different Shades of Horror

Help for the Haunted

I am writing this on the Sunday evening of a weekend during which the movie “Insidious: Chapter 2″ made $41 million dollars at the box office. Tomorrow evening “Sleepy Hollow” premieres on Fox and CBS airs the finale of the first season of “Under the Dome”. “The Walking Dead” is on the cover of this [...]

Speculative Fiction

Babayaga

Baba Yaga is a witch of Russian folklore, and Toby Barlow bewitches with his new novel — our starred reviewof the day. His first, Sharp Teeth, was a 2009 Alex Award winner, a story of werewolves in L.A. told entirely in verse. Babayaga is (mostly) straight prose, and offers quite a combination of genres–spy thriller, [...]