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A Tree Grows in Brooklyn 

by Betty Smith
05/10/2017 Categories: family drama identity older teens

The book focuses on a poor Irish-American teenage girl and her family as they live in Brooklyn, New York City. The book takes place during the first two decades of the 20th century.

I liked the book because it dealt with a family that was from Irish decent and I though it was interesting because many people came from countries far away and they had to adjust to life in America. Also, the girl's family is poor which I can relate to in a way.

If you like reading books about poverty and overcoming obstacles I suggest this book. Also, if you like reading about the motivation people have to live differently than they're parents try this book!

Sandra, 16

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Their Eyes Were Watching God 

by Zora Neale Hurston
05/10/2017 Categories: african americans friendship identity

The book is set in Florida in the early 20th century. It's focused on a teenage girl named Janie Crawfords. Throughout the book she claims she expects more form life but realizes she has to find out for herself what she should expect.

I really liked this book because it dealt with gender roles. I though it was important that it talked about woman wanting to have more rights and do more things they want to that only men are allowed to do.

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes reading books that deal with finding your own identity. Also if you like reading  about women being free and doing what they want and the value of women, I suggest this book.

Sandra, 16

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The Perks of Being a Wallflower  

by Stephen Chbosky
05/03/2017 Categories: high school drama identity movie suicide

The Perks of Being a Wallflower is about a quiet 15 year old named Charlie. The books starts with him writing to an unknown recipient about his life and two traumatic experiences he has gone through. Charlie eventually becomes friends with two seniors and starts experiencing drugs and parties while dealing with his own thoughts and problems.

I really liked this book because it made me think about how many people deal with traumatic experiences. The plot was emotional with some comedy, overall is makes you want to keep reading.

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes reading books about coming of age. But be warned, this book has content that includes: suicide, sexuality, adolescents and drug use.

Sandra, 16

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Me Before You 

by Jojo Moyes

Me Before You is about two people who are nothing alike but fall in love anyway. He is a disabled man who misses his fast-paced life and she is a quirky girl stuck in a boring town. She teaches him that life does not have to be perfect to be good and he teaches her that life is an adventure.

I loved this book, it was thought-provoking and funny at the same time. I laughed and I cried. Any book that can make you feel emotions like that must have been written in such a way as to make you feel like you are part of the story.

If you like tear jerkers and stories about life's imperfections, you would love Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. I highly recommend this book to fans of Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl and The Fault in Our Stars.

Amanda, 16

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Where The Stars Still Shine 

by Trish Doller
05/27/2016 Categories: family drama identity kidnapping older teens

Where the Stars Still Shine is a book about Callie, a seventeen-year-old girl who was abducted by her mom at a young age. Callie is found by the police, and brought home to her dad, but she struggles to adjust to living a normal life.
 

I am a tough critic, but this book was not my favorite. Even if you can handle the adult content scenes, there's a lot of sad moments, and the ending with the love interest left me dissatisfied.

Where the Stars Still Shine ends in a cliffhanger fashion where you get to decide what happens without the author explicitly telling you which may be appealing to some readers.

Amanda, 16

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Girl Online : The First Novel By Zoella 

by Zoe Sugg

Girl Online follows an anonymous teenage blogger, who is known as “Penny” – a clumsy, anxious, and sweet girl who has struggled a long time with panic attacks. When in New York for her mom's job, she meets Noah. She slowly begins to fall in love with him, unaware of his secret identity of a famous musician.

This book was a really good book to read, because it was exciting throughout, and was not entirely predictable. It also has a great romance storyline, and is very relatable to teenagers.

This book would be good for someone who likes reading about romance with a more realistic storyline. It isn't much of an action filled book, and has a particularly English tone.

Natalie, 14

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Don't Even Think About It 

by Sarah Mlynowski

This book follows the lives of one high school class, which develops telepathy by the administering of a faulty batch of flu shots. The class now has the ability to hear each other's thoughts, as well as the thoughts of everyone around them. They have to learn to work together, and learn how to handle their new powers.

This book was an interesting read, because I was able to follow all the points of view in one fluid perspective. The twists and turns throughout the book kept me guessing, and it was never boring to read.

 

This book is good for people who like interesting and quirky plot lines, as well as those readers who like reading about special powers. The book doesn't involve much action, as its focus is mostly on everyday settings.

 

Natalie, 14

 

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Princess Academy 

by Shannon Hale
This book is about a young girl, Miri, who lives in the small village of Mt. Eskel. Her town is picked to attend Princess Academy, where the prince will pick a bride, and Miri and the girls must all attend. At the academy, Miri must contend with fierce competition, new learning styles, and her own inner desires to see what she really wants.
I liked this book, because it was interesting to read about princesses, but with a much more modern twist. The book was unpredictable, and always kept me guessing, which made it fun to read.
I would recommend this book to people who like reading about princess stories, but it a much less fairytale-like way. The book is suspenseful, so if that is what appeals to you, this book is good.
Natalie, 14
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Princess for Hire 

by Lindsey Leavitt
04/19/2016 Categories: identity materialism social classes

This book follows the everyday life of a girl named Desi, She wishes that her life could turn extraordinary, and wishes for excitement. Her wishes do come true, but not in the ways that she thought they would. She becomes a filler princess; someone who would fill in for princesses in their break times.

This book was a decent book to read, because it had a very interesting plot line, and the story idea was fun to read. However, there wasn't much action in the book, which I found to be a little boring.

This book is a good fit for people who like girly books, and who enjoy a bit of a shorter read. The lack of action could; however, turn away readers who enjoy that in books.

Natalie, 14

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Into the Wild 

by Jon Krakauer
10/12/2015 Categories: adventure identity true stories

Chris McCandless takes a one way trip into the Alaskan wilderness, in which Jon Krakauer documents the journey from when it began to when the untimely death came to be. Krakauer, restates what occurred in Chris's journey, from meeting the people he met during hitchhiking, the various jobs he acquired, and the numerous places he stopped before heading into the wilderness.

Overall, the book was impressive in various ways. The organization in which the book was written is interesting and opening as it develops into further detail. Also, how the author established his credibility by mentioning a similar trip to that of Chris's trip, and how they both had the same desire in life. But most of all, I like how Jon Krakauer defends McCandless on why he did what he did, that it was part of human nature.

If you have a desire for exploration and the wilderness, then this book will sure give you some tips on how to properly do it and what the consequences are, both good and bad. Also, if you are a young adult who has desire to do something desperately, then this book would sure change the mentality and the way of approaching the desire.

Anthony, 16

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Allegiant 

by Veronica Roth

AllegiantIn the third book to the Divergent series, Tris and her friends work to answer questions about their society and previous and current leadership. Tobias's mom tries to take over the city, while Tris and her friends leave to find out more about their mysterious society. Once again, Tris and her friends assume the roles as heroes and work to free their people from unwanted leadership.

I enjoyed this book because it wrapped up the series nicely. It explained how their society came to be, and it gave more history into Tris's parents.

I would recommend this to anyone who read the first two books in the series and I would recommend the entire series to anybody who enjoys a good read.

Chanel, 15

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Divergent 

by Veronica Roth
03/29/2014 Categories: action dystopia identity sci fi social classes

DivergentThis book is about a girl who has to choose what faction she wants to go to. The factions are Abnegation, Amity, Euriodite, Candor, and Dauntless. Before she has to choose, she has to figure out is she is selfless enough.

This book was amazing. Tris turned out to be one of the best characters in this book for me because of the way she acts. I also figured out that I would want to be dauntless out of all of the factions because you have to be brave in order to be in that faction

I would recommend this book to others because it was such a great book. This book is very suspenseful. Make sure you grab the other books in this series. You will be disappointed if you can't complete this series after you finish this awesome book!

Rebecka, 15

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Brave New World 

by Aldous Huxley
02/01/2014 Categories: classic dystopia identity


Brave New World tells the story of life in the World State, a new civilization in which everything appears to be perfect. It follows Bernard a social outcast, Lenina a woman who follows the rules, and John the Savage who cannot understand how they can live in a world without love, and without free will.

I did not really enjoy this book; at times it was hard to understand what the author was trying to say. The tone of the novel was also really dark, and the book ends in a very disturbing way.

I would not really recommend this book based on my preferences - the plot did not really interest me.

Daisy, 17

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Insurgent 

by Veronica Roth
07/23/2013 Categories: dystopia identity

InsurgentAs war between the factions threatens Tris's new Dauntless life, she is haunted by grief, and guilt. Tris Prior is faced with the decision of risking her own life for the lives of others. Tris must now embrace her Divergence in order to save those she loves.

Insurgent was an exceptional sequel to Divergent. I loved how the relationship between Tobias and Tris developed drastically in this book.

I would recommend Insurgent to anyone. I believe teens especially will love it if they enjoy futuristic societies, action and romance.

Maria, 15

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Divergent 

by Veronica Roth
04/26/2012 Categories: dystopia identity romance suspense

Divergent coverIn a future Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to a particular virtue- Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). Each year, every 16 year old must choose a faction to devote the rest of their lives to. For Beatrice Prior, her decision is between family and herself. She makes the choice to leave her family in Abnegation and be who she was really meant to be- Dauntless. First, she must compete with other initiates to stay in Dauntless and not become factionless. She endures many trials and finds out more about herself than she could have ever imagined. But, she must keep this information to herself... or she could be killed.

Divergent is the most amazing book that I have ever read. I like the moral lesson, to become what YOU want to become rather than follow the path everyone else wants you to choose.

If you can relate to having other people make choices for you, this book is meant for you. "One choice can transform you."-Veroncia Roth

Aleck, 14

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