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Young Adult Book Reviews


Beginning with ANGUS, THONGS, AND FULL FRONTAL SNOGGING, all of the books in Louise Rennison’s Confessions of Georgia Nicolson series, are simply hilarious. As a teenager, my friends and I couldn’t stop reading the escapades of Georgia and her vivacious gang. Definitely girly, but also infinitely funny, they are a British pop song turned teenage girl novel. Get ready for british slang, a frisky little sister, insane cats, annoying parents, disco dances, and sexgods. I can say without hesitation, these books are quite fabbity-fab. Recommended by Caitlin.
Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging: Confessions of Georgia Nicolson Cover Image
ISBN: 9780064472272
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Teen - April 11th, 2006

My mixed-breed cat, half domestic tabby, half Scottish wildcat. The size of a small Labrador, only mad.

Stupid underwear. What's the point of them, anyway? They just go up your bum, as far as I can tell.

Full-Frontal Snogging:
Kissing with all the trimmings, lip to lip, open mouth, tongues ... everything.


LOOKING FOR ALASKA, by John Green, is still one of my favorite books. Green created something incrediblly compelling and also just incredibly cool in his characters. A stunning look at friendship, love, and life, this story has some dark moments but is ultimately beautiful. This book will resonate with both boys and girls, something that is hard for a young adult book to accomplish. If you like Alaska, also try Green’s other titles: AN ABUNDANCE OF KATHERINE’S, PAPER TOWNS, and his newest, THE FAULT IN OUR STARS. Recommended by Caitlin.
Looking for Alaska Cover Image
ISBN: 9780525475064
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Dutton Books - March 3rd, 2005

The award-winning, genre-defining debut from #1 bestselling author of The Fault in Our Stars

Winner of the Michael L. Printz Award
Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist
New York Times bestseller

First drink
First prank
First friend
First girl
Last words

PETER PAN by J.M. Barrie

Experiencing the timeless characters of PETER PAN in their original format brings the fantasy of Neverland to life not only for children, but for anyone who loves adventures. Giving the reader so much more than the Disney version, J.M. Barrie created an epic narrative that continuously brings the fairies, pirates, and thimbles of our dreams to life. Recommended by Caitlin.
Classic Starts(r) Peter Pan Cover Image
By James Matthew Barrie, Tania Zamorsky (Abridged by), Dan Andreasen (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781402754210
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Sterling - March 1st, 2009

"All children grow up. All except one." That special child is Peter Pan, and since making his debut on the stage in 1904, this eternal youth has carried boys and girls off to magical, marvelous Neverland. It's a trip that all kids want to make, and with this easy-to-read version of the classic, everyone can fly "second to the right, and straight on till morning" with Peter.

FEVER CRUMB by Philip Reeve

Fever Crumb is a great character in a tough spot. In the London of the future, she’s one of the last remaining members of a sub-species of people the rest of the population had hoped they’d exterminated. An orphan with a mysterious scar on the back of her head, Fever has been raised in secret among the member of the Order of Engineers.
Fever Crumb Cover Image
ISBN: 9780545222150
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scholastic Press - March 1st, 2011

A stunning, new novel by master storyteller Philip Reeve.

WHEN YOU REACH ME by Rebecca Stead

Winner of the 2010 Newbery Award. The first and most important thing for me to tell you about this book is that you MUST read it.  Do not miss this book, especially if you are 9-14 years old.  It is spellbinding. It’s kind of a mystery, and it’s kind of a time travel book.
When You Reach Me Cover Image
ISBN: 9780375850868
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Yearling Books - December 28th, 2010

"Like A Wrinkle in Time (Miranda's favorite book), When You Reach Me far surpasses the usual whodunit or sci-fi adventure to become an incandescent exploration of 'life, death, and the beauty of it all.'" --The Washington Post


Local author John C. Ralston (and employee at The Raven) is celebrating the release of his young adult novel, THE SECRET OF INVISIBILITY.  Published by the Kansas City Star, the story takes place in Lawrence and includes illustrations.  You can pick up your copy at The Raven ($9.95). John will be signing copies this Sunday, December 20, from 2-4PM.  Stop in and pick up a personalized copy of this book -- it’s the perfect time to get a great gift for the holiday season! THE SECRET OF INVISIBILITY:

General Teen Recommends

CHASING VERMEER by Blue Balliet. $7.99.  This is the first of three in a series.  The book mixes mystery, puzzles, possibilities, and art as outsiders Petra and Calder become friends while trying to find a missing Vermeer painting.  Lots of excitement and challenge -- really entices the reader to think about the Big Questions.  Ages 9 - 14.  Female and male protagonists.  Heidi recommends.    
Chasing Vermeer Cover Image
By Blue Balliett, Brett Helquist (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780439372978
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scholastic Paperbacks - May 1st, 2005

When seemingly unrelated and strange events start to happen and a precious Vermeer painting disappears, eleven-year-olds Petra Andalee and Calder Pillay combine their talents to solve an international art scandal. Reprint.

Teen Boys Recommends

THE EAR, THE EYE, AND THE ARM by Nancy Farmer. $6.99. This Newberry Honor Book is set in Zimbabwe in the year 2194. The military ruler’s 13-year-old son and his younger brother and sister leave their technologically over-controlled home and find themselves on a series of perilous adventures.                                                                                                                                                                           
The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm Cover Image
ISBN: 9780545356619
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scholastic Paperbacks - January 1st, 2012

This Newbery Honor book by award-winning, bestselling author Nancy Farmer is being reissued in paperback

Teen Girls Recommends

WHERE THE LILIES BLOOM by Vera and Bill Cleaver. $5.99 Strong and wise beyond her years, fourteen-year-old Mary Call Luther must prevent her recently fatherless family from being shipped off to the country orphanage, all while going to school and keeping the family’s wild crafting operation afloat.
Where the Lilies Bloom Cover Image
ISBN: 9780064470056
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Teen - September 18th, 2001

Mary Call has promised her dying father to keep her brother and sisters together forever on the mountain, and never to take any help from strangers. She is determined to keep her word. No matter what. At first she is sure she can manage. Romey, Ima Dean, and Devola help gather herbs to sell in town; the riches of the mountains will surely keep the family clothed and fed.

Pre-Teen Girls Recommends

ANNE OF GREEN GABLES series by L.M. Montgomery. This series of novels set in turn-of-the-century Canada follows the joys and misadventures of indomitable orphan Anne Shirley. Kelly recommends.


Anne of Green Gables Cover Image
ISBN: 9780553213133
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Starfire - April 1st, 1982

Read the timeless classic about the beloved Anne Shirley, a red-haired orphan with a fiery spirit, before the new NETFLIX series premieres and don't miss the forward by Margaret Atwood, author of The Handmaid's Tale, celebrating the 100th anniversary of this children's favorite


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