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Teen Blog

15 Great Teen Novels for Music Lovers

UnsignedHypeUnsigned Hype by Booker T. Mattison

YA MATTISON, B.

Fifteen-year-old Tory Tyson dreams of producing hip hop records, and as he rapidly begins to experience success doing just that, he finds that he must make choices between the way he has been raised by his single, God-fearing mother and the folks he meets in the music world.

This song will save your lifeThis Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales

YA SALES, L.

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.

AmplifiedAmplified by Tara Kelly

YA KELLY, T.

When privileged seventeen-year-old Jasmine Kiss gets kicked out of her house by her father, she takes what is left of her meager savings and flees to Santa Cruz, California, to pursue her dream of becoming a rock musician.

SisterMischiefSister Mischief by Laura Goode

YA GOODE, L.

As members of teen hip-hop band Sister Mischief, Esme Rockett, also known as MC Ferocious, rocks her suburban Minnesota Christian high school with more than the hip-hop music she makes with best friends Marcy (DJ SheStorm) and Tess (The ConTessa) when she develops feelings for her co-MC, Rowie (MC Rohini).

HeavyMetalYouHeavy Metal and You by Christopher Krovatin

YA KROVATIN, C.

High schooler Sam begins losing himself when he falls for a preppy girl who wants him to give up getting wasted with his best friends and even his passion for heavy metal music in order to become a better person.

DebbieHarryDebbie Harry Sings in French by Meagan Brothers

YA BROTHERS, B.

When Johnny completes an alcohol rehabilitation program and his mother sends him to live with his uncle in North Carolina, he meets Maria, who seems to understand his fascination with the new wave band Blondie, and he learns about his deceased father’s youthful forays into “glam rock,” which gives him perspective on himself, his past, and his current life.

Fat kidFat Kid Rules the World by K.L. Going

YA GOING, K.

Seventeen-year-old Troy, depressed, suicidal, and weighing nearly 300 pounds, gets a new perspective on life when a homeless teenager who is a genius on guitar wants Troy to be the drummer in his rock band.

VinylPrincessThe Vinyl Princess by Yvonne Prinz

YA PRINZ, Y.

Allie, a sixteen-year-old who is obsessed with LPs, works at the used record store on Telegraph Ave. and deals with crushes–her own and her mother’s–her increasingly popular blog and zine, and generally grows up over the course of one summer in her hometown of Berkeley, California.

DJ RisingDJ Rising by Love Maia

YA LOVE, M.

Sixteen-year-old Marley Diego-Dylan’s career as ‘DJ Ice’ is skyrocketing, but his mother’s heroin addiction keeps dragging him back to earth.

scarboysThe Scar Boys by Len Vlahos

YA VLAHOS, L.

Written as a college admission essay, eighteen-year-old Harry Jones recounts a childhood defined by the hideous scars he hid behind, and how forming a band brought self-confidence, friendship, and his first kiss.

OpenRoadSummerOpen Road Summer by Emery Lord

YA LORD, E.

Follows seventeen-year-old Reagan as she tries to escape heartbreak and a bad reputation by going on tour with her country superstar best friend–only to find more trouble as she falls for the surprisingly sweet guy hired to pose as the singer’s boyfriend.

GirlWhoBecameBeetleThe Girl Who Became a Beatle by Greg Taylor

YA TAYLOR, G.

Regina Bloomsbury, a sixteen-year-old, Beatles-obsessed rocker, takes a trip to an alternate reality where the Beatles never existed and her band, the Caverns, are the rock-and-roll superstars.

StrutsFretsStruts & Frets by Jon Skovron

YA SKOVRON, J.

Sammy wants to be a musician, as was his grandfather, but while the band he is in is self-destructing, Sammy is too distracted by his grandfather’s decline and confused feelings about his best friend to fix it–and his mother stays too busy to help.

5flavorsFive Flavors of Dumb by Anthony John

YA JOHN, A.

Eighteen-year-old Piper becomes the manager for her classmates’ popular rock band, called Dumb, giving her the chance to prove her capabilities to her parents and others, if only she can get the band members to get along.

I am not the walrusI Am (not) the Walrus by Ed Briant

YA BRIANT, E.

As the singer and bass player for a Beatles cover band, Toby embarks on a quest to increase his sex appeal, a plan that derails when he finds a mysterious note inside his old bass guitar.

By Colleen, Teen Services Librarian on September 30, 2014 Categories: Fiction, Music, Realistic Fiction

Book Trailer of the Week– The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson

This week’s book trailer of the week is for The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson.  Set in the near future, The Adoration of Jenna Fox tells the story of Jenna who, at 17-years-old, has just woken up from a coma that has left her devoid of any memories of or capabilities to be the girl she was before her accident.  What follows is Jenna’s rediscovering of not only how to be a normal teen again, but what happened to her memories and why does everything just feel like it is not what it is supposed to be.  Click here to find The Adoration of Jenna Fox in the Library!

By Colleen, Teen Services Librarian on September 26, 2014 Categories: Book Trailer, Fiction, Mystery, Science Fiction

Reviews by You!

TwilightTwilight by Stephenie Meyer
YA MEYER, S.
I found that this book was just amazing. I loved all of the descriptions of Edward’s appearance and his emotions. My favorite part in the book was when Edward showed Bella the meadow and how he attracted animals to himself. 5 stars.
Review by Julia

Maze RunnerThe Maze Runner by James Dashner
YA SF DASHNER, J.
For roughly 3 years, I’d been planning on reading The Maze Runner. People told me that it was an awful book. I have to disagree! I was impressed by Dashner’s ability to create such a complicated plot-line! The book felt like I was sprinting through the maze and discovering the mysteries “myself”, it was that good.
Review by Gabrielle

DivergentDivergent by Veronica Roth
YA ROTH, V.
It was amazing! It was the perfect blend of romance and action, so that I was interested the whole time.
Review by Mary

six months laterSix Months Later by Natalie D. Richards
YA RICHARDS, N.
I found it an interesting book! I love the mystery concept and the whole idea!
Review by Cora

fault in our starsThe Fault in Our Stars by John Green
YA GREEN, J.
I absolutely loved this book! It was about these two teens, Hazel and Augustus, who both had cancer and how they helped each other through it and fell in love. This book is a MUST READ!
Review by Clarke

EvermoreEvermore by Alyson Noel
YA NOEL, A.
This is another great series by Alyson Noel. This is about Ever. She has powers that cause her head to hurt. But everything changes when she meets Damen. She doesn’t know what he is but she is drawn to him.
Review by Emily

saywhatyouwillSay What You Will by Cammie McGovern
YA MCGOVERN, C.
Amy has been dealing with cerebral palsy her whole life. She is tired of having a teacher helping her. Her mother comes up with a plan; peer helpers. That’s when she meets Matthew. From that point on, it’s a whirlwind of events. Surprises are on their way.
Review by Julia

Wednesday WarsThe Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt
YA SCHMIDT, G.
An amazing book about a kid that spends Wednesday afternoons with his teacher. The student believes that his teacher, Mrs. Baker, hates his guts. He learns that both of them have things in common. They both soon enjoy each others company. I definitely recommend.
Review by Lester

allegiantAllegiant by Veronica Roth
YA ROTH, V.
This is a very good book, but sad in some parts. It is the third book in the Divergent series. At the beginning, everybody is trying to figure out how to live in a factionless society. Then some members of a rebel group venture outside the city to the Bureau of Genetic Welfare. There they learn that their city is an experiment to correct bad genes. Can they convince everyone that even if your genes are “damaged”, you are still a whole and complete person without destroying life as they know it? Read Allegiant and find out! Secrets will be revealed, and lives will be changed.
Review by Theresa

Lightning ThiefThe Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
YA RIORDAN, R.
Percy Jackson finds out that he is a demigod. His mother is also kidnapped by Hades. He goes on a quest to rescue her. This series is great. Make sure you read the book before you watch the movie.
Review by Emily

Book Trailer of the Week– The Girl Who Never Was by Skylar Dorset

This week’s book trailer of the week is for The Girl Who Never Was by Skylar Dorset. Selkie Stewart lives a seemingly normal life.  Other than being raised by two eccentric aunts, her life is pretty average.  However, when Selkie goes searching for the mother who abandoned her as a baby, she ends up finding out that she is anything but normal.  In fact, the search for her mother turns her whole world upside-down, and suddenly she is fighting to survive in a new world where everything is not what it seems.  Click here to find The Girl Who Never Was in the Library!

By Colleen, Teen Services Librarian on September 19, 2014 Categories: Action/Adventure, Book Trailer, Fantasy, Fiction, Mystery, Romance

Reviews by You!

Maze RunnerThe Maze Runner by James Dashner
YA SF DASHNER, J.
Thomas, a 16-year-old boy, finds himself in a box. He was surrounded by a bunch of boys outside the box. They’re trying to find a way out of what they call The Glade. They’ll do anything, even take their own lives, to get out of there.
Review by Brigitte

alispllAli’s Pretty Little Lies by Sara Shepard
YA SHEPARD, S.
Sibling rivalry. You would think is just hitting or spitting harsh words at each other…but when two twins, Alison and Courtney, fight, they really fight. Courtney practically chokes her sister. That’s when their parents decide to send Courtney away but Courtney doesn’t want to go so she switches their lives.
Review by Elizabeth

killyoulastKill You Last by Todd Strasser
YA STRASSER, T.
Shelby thinks she is living in one of the safest towns, but then, three girls who all used her father’s photography go missing and are soon discovered dead. With the media all blaming her father, who Shelby believes is innocent, she is determined to find the person responsible and get the truth at all costs.
Review by Paige

GiverThe Giver by Lois Lowry
YA SF LOWRY, L.
A great book. A story of a “perfect” town that’s not so perfect. So when Jonas discovers some big secrets about his town, he realizes that his town is a lot more than meets the eye.
Review by Kyra

warlockThe Warlock by Michael Scott
YA SCOTT, M.
Part of an awesome series. For magic and adventure lovers. Full of excitement, twists and turns, betrayal, and alliances. An eternal battle between good and evil.
Review by Natalie

fault in our starsThe Fault in Our Stars by John Green
YA GREEN, J.
I absolutely loved this book! It was about these two teens, Hazel and Augustus, who both had cancer and how they helped each other through it and fell in love. This book is a MUST READ!
Review by Clarke

Me and EarlMe and Earl and The Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews
YA ANDREWS, J.
This book was funny and entertaining from page one. It was impossible to put down and made the grim reality of life and death a little more bearable, all the while portraying it extremely accurately.
Review by Cassidy

eastEast by Edith Pattou
YA PATTOU, E.
This was a five star book! I love the way that the author, Edith Pattou, describes the feelings and weather in this book. I would recommend this book to any middle school student who enjoys reading books about never giving up. I loved this book!
Review by Julia

nowandzenNow and Zen by Linda C. Gerber
YA GERBER, L.
Nori Tanaka travels to Japan where everyone thinks she is native there, even though she isn’t. Overall, this book is 3.5 out of 5 stars in my opinion.
Review by Marissa

smallstepsNFSmall Steps: The Year I Got Polio by Peg Kehret
YA 362.1968 KEH
This is an autobiography. Kehret tells us about her journey against polio. The whole time you’re reading this you are just rooting for her to get better. I won’t spoil it but you should read it to find out what eventually happens to her.
Review by Emily

Book Trailer of the Week– Broken Hearts, Fences, and Other Things to Mend by Katie Finn

This week’s book trailer of the week is for Broken Hearts, Fences, and Other Things to Mend by Katie Finn.  If you are not quite ready to give up on summer yet, then you should definitely pick up this novel.  It’s about Gemma, who has recently been dumped by her boyfriend and is forced to live with her father this summer in the Hamptons.  Most would love to spend a summer at the Hamptons, but not Gemma.  Five years ago she made a bad decision that resulted in the breakup of her good friendship with Hallie.  In order to make the best of the summer, Gemma gets a makeover and inadvertently takes on a different persona in the Hamptons.  Will her former best friend recognize her?  Can she be someone else this summer?  Click here to find Broken Hearts, Fences, and Other Things to Mend in the Library and find out!

By Colleen, Teen Services Librarian on September 12, 2014 Categories: Book Trailer, Drama, Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Romance

Reviews by You!

Almost PerfectAlmost Perfect by Brian Katcher
YA KATCHER, B.
This is about Logan, a guy who just broke up wit his girlfriend of three years. He meets Sage, who is actually a boy. But he didn’t know at the time, so he gets scared because he likes her. As the reader, you want to keep reading so you can understand Sage’s situation. Even though this is kind of a big book, it is a page turner.
Review by Emily

UntilIDieUntil I Die by Amy Plum
YA PLUM, A.
A very intriguing and suspenseful book.
Review by Kayla

CatchingFireCatching Fire by Suzanne Collins
YA COLLINS, S.
An amazing sequel to The Hunger Games. I couldn’t stop reading this book and the cliffhanger is urging me to read Mockingjay.
Review by Noah

six months laterSix Months Later by Natalie D. Richards
YA RICHARDS, N.
Six Months Later is a book that wants you to keep reading and keep you on the edge of your seat. Chloe can’t seem to remember the six months of her life missing and the boyfriend of her dreams is like a bad nightmare!
Review by Destiny

sorceressThe Sorceress by Michael Scott
YA SCOTT, M.
5 stars! An awesome series filled with alchemy, gods, magic, warlocks, sorceresses, and prophecy! The Sorceress is one out of six amazing books in this series!
Review by Natalie

DivergentDivergent by Veronica Roth
YA ROTH, V.
I think it was really good. I think everyone should read it because it makes you think of what kind of person you are. It is the best book I ever read.
Review by Jasmine

AlchemistThe Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
YA COELHO, P.
This book was full of metaphors. It was all about following your personal legends (what you really want to do in life) and following the omens. Overall, I would give this book an 8 out of 10.
Review by Ravi

echoEcho by Alyson Noel
YA NOEL, A.
This is actually the second book of the Soul Seekers series. You should read the first book which is Fated. The series is about Daire Santos who discovers that she is a seeker. There isn’t anything she can do about it. There are four books in this series.
Review by Emily

TwilightTwilight by Stephenie Meyer
YA MEYER, S.
This book really kept me at the edge of my seat. There was lots of detail and elaboration. This made me feel like I was actually at the scene. I was surprised when it turned out that Edward was a vampire.
Review by Lester

BattleLabyrinthThe Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan
YA RIORDAN, R.
This series just gets better and better. It’s action-packed and lures you to keep reading. I love the characters and the actions that they make. This book took me on a journey through a maze of friendship, trust, hard work, and loyalty. This is one of the best books by Riordan.
Review by Jill

Permanent Record by Leslie Stella

permanent recordPermanent Record

by Leslie Stella

Badi Hessamizadeh has just voluntarily left his public high school because his solution to ending the everyday, intense bullying he experienced was to blow up a toilet. Badi’s reputation as a terrorist after the toilet explosion, has made the bullying against him unbearable. So, Badi’s father changed his name– now Badi is known as Bud Hess– and transferred Badi to a private academy. Can life be different for Badi, now Bud, at his new school or will he face the same prejudices as before?

Permanent Record is a pretty compelling read, not only because it deals with the issue of racial profiling and bullying, but also because Badi is a flawed character.  He doesn’t make the right decisions, and while at first it is hard to understand Badi’s reasoning for acting out, as you continue reading you get to know Badi.  You understand that he is struggling with anxiety and depression, and the bullying that he has to endure at school is horrible.  Added to all of his struggles is that Badi has as Iranian-American is a post-911 world.  I was surprised at how much this book moved me, and also how much I got to know the character of Badi and his struggles.  By the end of the novel, I didn’t expect it to end the way that it did, but now I can think of no way that I would have rather it ended.  If you are in the mood for a realistic and thought-provoking read, you should definitely pick up Permanent Record.  Click here to find it in the Library!

permanent record event

Permanent Record is also this year’s Suburban Mosaic Teen Novel.  To learn more about the Suburban Mosaic Reading program, which “seeks to confront issues of racial and social justice and promote cross-cultural understanding through literature”, then click here to be directed to the website.  To celebrate the selection of Permanent Record as the 2014 Suburban Mosaic Teen Novel, the Library will be hosting An Evening with Leslie Stella on Monday, September 15.  Leslie Stella will talk about her novel, writing, and there will also be a book signing.  Click here to register for the program and find out more information.

By Colleen, Teen Services Librarian on September 9, 2014 Categories: Award Winning, Bullying, Fiction, Guys Reads, High School, Issues, Multicultural, Realistic Fiction, Staff Pics

Back to School, With a Supernatural Twist

Not many of us are excited to go back to school, but if you need a way to make the back to school time of year a little more enjoyable, then check out some of these novels that make school seem more exciting.  Let’s just say these are not your average schools…

zombiequeenZombie Queen of Newbury High by Amanda Ashby

YA ASHBY, A.

While trying to cast a love spell on her date on the eve of the senior prom, Mia inadvertently infects her entire high school class with a virus that will turn them all into zombies.

greatterriblebeautyA Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray

YA BRAY, L.

After the suspicious death of her mother in 1895, sixteen-year-old Gemma returns to England, after many years in India, to attend a finishing school where she becomes aware of her magical powers and ability to see into the spirit world.

etiquette espionageEtiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger

YA CARRIGER, G.
In an alternate England of 1851, spirited fourteen-year-old Sophronia is enrolled in a finishing school where, she is surprised to learn, lessons include not only the fine arts of dance, dress, and etiquette, but also diversion, deceit, and espionage.

avalonhighAvalon High by Meg Cabot

YA CABOT, M.

Having moved to Annapolis, Maryland, with her medievalist parents, high school junior Ellie enrolls at Avalon High School where several students may or may not be reincarnations of King Arthur and his court.

CrossMyHeartCross My Heart and Hope to Spy by Ally Carter

YA CARTER, A.

Cammie Morgan is a CIA legacy and attends the premier school in the world…for spies. The school hosts some mysterious guests with the code name Blackthorne. When Cammie is blamed for a security breach that threatens to expose the school’s top secret status, she and her friends face danger to clear Cammie’s name and learn the truth about Blackthorne.

jekelhydeJekel Loves Hyde by Beth Fantaskey

YA FANTASKEY, B.

As seventeen-year-old Jill Jekel and classmate Tristen Hyde work together on a chemistry project, hoping to win a scholarship for her and a cure for his curse, they also uncover family secrets and a chemistry of their own.

Hex HallHex Hall by Rachel Hawkins

YA HAWKINS, R.

When Sophie attracts too much human attention for a prom-night spell gone horribly wrong, she is exiled to Hex Hall, an isolated reform school for wayward Prodigium, a.k.a. witches, faeries, and shapeshifters.

fallenFallen by Lauren Kate

YA KATE, L.

Suspected in the death of her boyfriend, seventeen-year-old Luce is sent to a Savannah, Georgia, reform school where she meets two intriguing boys and learns the truth about the strange shadows that have always haunted her.

legaciesLegacies by Mercedes Lackey and Rosemary Edghill

YA LACKEY, M.

After her family is killed, Spirit White is taken to Oakhurst Academy, a combination orphanage and school for those with magical powers, where she and her new friends investigate when students start mysteriously disappearing.

Vampire AcademyVampire Academy by Richelle Mead

YA MEAD, R.

Two years after a horrible incident made them run away, vampire princess Lissa and her guardian-in-training Rose are found and returned to St. Vladimir’s Academy, where one focuses on mastering magic, the other on physical training, while both try to avoid the perils of gossip, cliques, gruesome pranks, and sinister plots.

Reviews by You!

ifigrowupIf I Grow Up by Todd Strasser
YA STRASSER, T.
DeShawn is growing up in the poorest area of New York where there are two main careers: gang involvement or fast food. When the responsibility of caring for his grandma, sister, and twin niece and nephew, with a baby on the way, become too much, DeShawn joins the Disciples to help cope financially.
Review by Paige

CatchingFireCatching Fire by Suzanne Collins
YA COLLINS, S.
This book was amazing! It had action and some problems with the Capitol which made it so much harder to put the book down. I would rate this book 11 out of 10! This book is by far in my top 10 favorite books.
Review by Gabby

six months laterSix Months Later by Natalie D. Richards
YA RICHARDS, N.
This was one of the best books I ever read. It starts out with a girl named Chloe who fell asleep in study hall. When she wakes up, it is six months later and it is snowing. She finds out that her crush is now her boyfriend, she scored a really high SAT, but her best friend won’t talk to her. Chloe must figure out how it happened and do something to fix it before it’s too late.
Review by Theresa

ScorpiaScorpia by Anthony Horowitz
YA HOROWITZ, A.
Full of twists and surprises, from one truth to the next, a real page turner and impossible to put down.
Review by Lia

dualedDualed by Elsie Chapman
YA CHAPMAN, E.
A girl named West Grayer lives in a place where they have twins (with the same DNA) from different parents. Now it’s West’s turn to try to kill her twin or she will be killed.
Review by Brigitte

allegiantAllegiant by Veronica Roth
YA ROTH, V.
Allegiant was a great way to wrap up the Divergent trilogy. Although I was upset by the way Roth ended the book with an unexpected event, it is worth reading. I enjoyed Insurgent more than Allegiant due to the fact of Insurgent being more people-pleasing and ending happily.
Review by Kristen

Long Way GoneA Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah
YA 966.404 BEA
This book was really good. I really liked that there was so much detail involved. I didn’t like to believe that it was a true story because it is so sad. Overall I would recommend this book.
Review by Sam

hatchetHatchet by Gary Paulsen
YA PAULSEN, G.
Hatchet is an amazing book! It is about a boy who gets lost in the wild and has to survive. This realistic fiction book is a cliffhanger and makes you want to read on. So, for overall rating, I’d give this book a 9.5/10.
Review by Adam

savingtheworldSaving the World and Other Extreme Sports by James Patterson
YA PATTERSON, J.
This is a really good book to read during the summer. Maximum Ride is a 14-year-old girl that has wings and can fly. She and her flock go on a mission to save the world and have to stop the crazy scientists from killing half the people in the world.
Review by Zoe

SomethingWickedSomething Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury
YA BRADBURY, R.
I thought that this classic book was really interesting. It made me think a lot! It was pretty scary and creepy, but it would be a great sci-fi read for anyone!
Review by Abby