Check out these book reviews by local teens. 

Want to submit your own? Fill out this FORM.

Categories

America's First Daughter 

by Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie
06/28/2017 Categories: historical older teens

America's First Daughter is about the life of Thomas Jefferson's daughter, Martha (Patsy) Jefferson Randolph, and her influential role in her father's political views, presidency, and private life. The book begins when Martha was a child, and ends with her as an elderly woman. The storyline navigates Martha's travels, love interests, marriage, children, and her close relationship with her father.

This novel was very well-written and thoroughly researched. The authors did an amazing job of recounting the story of an influential, yet not well-known historical figure. I like the story a lot because I can relate to Martha during her teenage years.

I would recommend the book to others because it is very interesting and informative. It was very raw and realistic, which I think other people will appreciate. If you like history, this book would be great for you!

Bethany, 15

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

Sky of Red Poppies 

by Zohreh Ghahremani
06/28/2017 Categories: family secrets friendship social classes

Sky of Red Poppies is about two girls named, Roya and Shireen, who both live opposite lives financially, politically, and religiously in 1960's Iran. However, even through their differences they become best friends. Roya is jealous of Shireen's independent lifestyle and begins to question of how she was raised and stands for controversial political stances which gets her in trouble at times even with the government at one point. With Iran being closed to opinions, it makes it difficult for both girls to achieve their goals as people morally.

I liked how the novel incorporated poetry which the girls would recite and memorize for themselves. As well how they explored political views in a nation at the moment who usually oppresses or objectifies different opinions that opposes their government.

If you like learning of different cultures and political views of a different nation then Sky of Red Poppies by Zohreh Ghahremani is the right novel for you. As well as if you like the everlasting bonds of friendships and getting through obstacles.

Anahi, 17

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

A Child Called It 

by Dave Pelzer

A Child Called It is the autobiography of Dave Pelzer, where he recounts of his childhood and endeavors child abuse by his mother through starvation, beatings, and mental abuse. Through out the whole novel he wonders why he is treated so badly by his mother, even though his oldest and youngest brothers don't receive this abuse. He as well seeks out the help of his father, however with no avail. Although, he goes through all this trauma, he manages to maintain his faith and survive through the abuse of his mother.

A Child Called It is an interesting yet unfortunate autobiography. It brings to a wider attention towards child abuse and how any little sign of abuse should be brought to attention not just pushed beside; because a parent made an excuse. I liked how specific each detail was written down and how the author uses pathos to invoke the emotion of sadness and depression. The autobiography makes it as if you were there and hearing the abuse and seeing it.

I would recommend this novel to those who like hearing true stories with explicit images in your head of what is going on. It may even leave you in tears just like me, however, it is worth reading even through the sadness. You won't even want to put the novel down and wish to want to know more.

Anahi, 17

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

Throne of Glass 

by Sara J. Maas
06/28/2017 Categories: action dystopia fantasy romance royalty

In a world where magic is forbidden, a young assassin named Celaena Sardothien is working a mine as her prison sentence. But, being chosen by the Crown Prince, Celaena will be able to fight to serve as the King's Champion, if she can defeat twenty three other convicts. But as the competitors start dying one by one, it stops being a fight for freedom but a fight for survival. And she's the only person who can stop this evil.

This book is a mystery within itself. The writing style was intricate. The way how the past is explained throughout the book instead of in the beginning was beautiful, and everything came together in the end. It's extremely unpredictable, but in a good way. For me, I found it boring at first but kept reading because I knew something big would happen. But before I knew it, I was hooked. The characters really drew me into it.

I would recommend this book to anyone wanting a storytelling experience. It does take a bit of time to get into, but after that I think that the writing style just pulls you in. This book would also be good for people who like to come up with theories. It does have a love triangle, which I found a bit awkward, but for fans of dystopias such as The Hunger Games, I think that you'll like it. It's also the first book in the series.

Alexis, 14

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

The School for Good and Evil 

by Soman Chainani
06/24/2017 Categories: boarding school fantasy friendship

The School for Good and Evil takes place in the world where fairy tales come from. It's called The Woods. There is a small village in The Woods, where the protagonists come from, Sophie and Agatha. Every year, two children are taken from the village to attend the School. While Agatha is the dark, depressing, reject of the village, Sophie is the bright, popular girl. Agatha's best friend. Yet when the both get taken to the school, Sophie is taken to the School for Evil while Agatha is taken to the School for Good. With princes, rivalry, and a Schoolmaster that no one knows his true intentions, these village opposites need to work together with the children of famous characters to discover how The School for Good and Evil is truly run.

I absolutely love this book, and the entire trilogy. The characters are so easy to fall in love with. Especially how Sophie believes that she should be in the Good school, how she's the nice one. And Agatha just wants her best friend Sophie back. The love triangle is written beautiful and not awkward at all. The way the book concludes leaves enough mystery to make you want to read the rest of the books, yet anwsers enough questions to make you feel like you understand everything.

I would honestly recommend to everyone. It's an epic fantasy and fairy tale story. It talks about the balance between good and evil, friendship, and love. It has action and has a plethora of fairy tale references and children. If you like fantasy trust me, you will love The School for Good and Evil.

Alexis, 14

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas  

by John Boyne
06/21/2017 Categories: friendship realistic fiction wwII

During World War ll, 8-year-old Bruno (Asa Brunofield) and his family leave Berlin to take up residence near the concentration camp where his father (David Thewlis), has just become commandant. He finds a Jewish boy of his age, though the barbed-wire fence of the camp that separates them.

This is a lovely book that made me feel so many emotions at once. I loved this book because it explained everything exactly how a 8 year old would see it.

This book was amazing! I would recommend this book to a person who likes to hear people's survival stories. I would say you want to be a little older 13 to understand this book.

Yessica, 15

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

Nickel and Dimed 

by Barbara Ehrenreich
06/21/2017 Categories: non-fiction older teens

Nickel and Dimed is about the author who decides to work minimum wage jobs and live like someone would with that kind of job. She goes through different jobs and tells about her experiences.

I thought the book was okay, because it was interesting but I felt like the author should have tried living more like a person working with a minimum wage job. Also, I thought she should have included a more difficult situation.

I would recommend this book to anyone that wants to learn more about how hard life is working a minimum wage life. If you want to learn more about the life of an average American I suggest this book.

Sandra, 16

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

Seven Daughters and Seven Sons 

by Barbara Cohen and Bahija Lovejoy
06/21/2017 Categories: friendship realistic fiction romance

Image result for seven daughters and seven sons

This incredible book takes place in an ancient Arab nation. The main character, Buran, longs to leave the house, and not wait for her father to chose a husband for her. Buran then decides to try for something she has always wanted.

I completely adored this book. This covers the femininity of a woman, the author really dives deep into being a woman and what that means. The story itself is a mix between romance and friendship.

Anyone who likes the Disney movie, Mulan, would love this book. Think of an Arab version of Mulan. Except the character herself wants a full life. And so she disguises as a boy, and travels to a city far away from her house where she meets the dishy Mahmud. She tries to keep their friendship from going too far. Because if she reveals to the prince, Mahmud that she is a woman, then she will lose everything she has worked for.

Priscilla, 12

Rating: 

smileySuggest the Library purchase this book

Kristy's Great Idea: The Baby-Sitters Club 

by Raina Telgemeier based on the novel by Ann M. Martin
06/10/2017 Categories: comics friendship manga realistic fiction

This book is about five girls: Claudia, Stacey, Marry Anne, Kristy, and Dawn. In the first book, Kristy decides to create a club in which they all could babysit. She invites Claudia, and Marry Anne to join. Claudia eventually invites Stacey into the club. This wonderful book reflects the ups-and-downs in relationships with friends and family.

I think this book is a very great book. It is great because there is no bad language, the pictures(this book series I'm talking about is a comic) are appropriate, and the characters are interesting.

I would hands-down recommend this series to others! The books tell the basics of friendships, morals, and this book series may give you a smile every so often. Anyone of any gender can read this magnificent book, but I think the story will most likely appeal to girls. Have fun reading it!

Priscilla, 12

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

Everything, Everything 

by Nicola Yoon
06/10/2017 Categories: friendship realistic fiction romance

A girl named Maddy suffers from combined immunodeficiency disease (SCID). New neighbors move in next door, and she locks eyes with a boy named Olly. Later on they become friends and eventually fall in love. Maddy is becoming more and more frustrated with not being able to go outside and see the world. She tests the limits with Olly and learns about something shocking that changes her life.

I enjoyed this book very much, because it shows a person's perspective on SCID. Also, it was a lovely teen romance story.

It's an innocent love story between two teens and it shows the psychological impact SCID has on someone. If you like a cute love story, but also dealing with a serious disease, then this is for you.

Johanna, 16

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

We Were Liars 

by E. Lockhart
06/10/2017 Categories: dating drama family drama friendship romance

This novel is a captivating mystery-drama depicting the main character, Cadence, as she deals with the repercussions of tragedies that happened the previous summer.

This book had never-ending surprises and twists that kept me at the edge of my seat. This book was captivating from beginning to end. It had an unsettling atmosphere that haunted both the main character and the reader.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of mysteries with no definitive ending. I recommend that you go into this book blind, without any prior knowledge of what it's about, in order to enjoy it to its fullest potential.

Hannah, 17

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

Looking for Alaska 

by John Green
06/10/2017 Categories: boarding school death friendship romance

This novel is about the life of a young teenage boy as he goes away to a boarding school and meets an unlikely companion in the form of a larger than life girl named Alaska.

It was a very captivating book, complete with John Green's trademark witty dialogue. As always, John Green's characters are the highlight of his novels, with this novel being no exception. The main characters are all charming in their own ways.

If you like introspective stories with a simple premise, then you would definitely enjoy this novel. It is a novel that is both entertaining and stimulating to the mind.

Hannah, 17

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

Fangirl 

by Rainbow Rowell
06/10/2017 Categories: dating drama friendship siblings

This novel tells the story of a young girl, Cat, and her struggles towards her transition from the comfort of her home to the big and scary college campus life. Along the way, she meets new people that make her stay just the least bit bearable.

I really liked it! It was a light and easy book to read with plenty of humorous, witty dialogue as expected from Rainbow Rowell. The characters are all relatively well written with the side characters being just as memorable as the main characters.

I would recommend this to anyone who just wants to unwind with a good story. It's an entertaining read that does not require much mental stimulation, for lack of a better term.

Hannah, 17

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

All The Bright Places 

by Jennifer Niven
06/10/2017 Categories: emotions & feelings friendship suicide

This novel is a classic retelling of two misfits who come together and find solace in each other. Together, they fight through their demons as they charge towards normalcy together.
 

I really liked it! I felt that it depicted the daily struggles of people that are plagued with mental illness in a way that both humanizes them and empowers them!
 

I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys teen romances with a bit more substance. It is a novel that will keep you thinking.

Hannah, 17

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

Pretties 

by Scott Westerfeld
06/10/2017 Categories: dystopia fantasy sci fi technology

Tally is a pretty now, empty-headed and foolish, and she looks perfect and can't decide what to wear to a party. There at the party, she finds one of her old friends dressed up as one of her oldest nightmares; a Special, a member of Special Circumstances. He tells her that he hid a note and gift somewhere in an old mansion. She then finds something to return her to her older self; well, at least the way her mind thinks, and fights (yet again) against Special Circumstances to get what is right.

I thought it was a pretty good book. It wasn't as good as Uglies, the first book in the trilogy, but it was still very good. Tally goes on an adventure, finding what is right, and learns a little along the way.

I would recommend this book to you if you like romance and adventure. I recommend that you read the first book because, like almost all book series, all the books after the first one won't make sense if you haven't read the first book.

Cailin, 11

Rating: 

smileyFind at the Library

Page 1 of 37 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 20 > >>

Teen Librarian

Have a question?

Call:  760-839-4283

Email:cjanovitz@escondido.org

Search