Young Adult Fiction
The Geography of You and Me

The Geography of You and Me

Owen and Lucy live in the same apartment building, but don’t meet until they’re stuck in an elevator together during a blackout. They forge an instant connection—but almost immediately after, Owen and his father take off for New Mexico, then California, then Seattle, and Lucy and her parents move to Scotland, then England. (Long-distance travel is quite the metaphor for adolescence, no?) As they move farther apart, their connection deepens, which makes them wonder: what if home isn’t a place, but a person?

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Cinder

Cinder

$9.99$2.99Audiobook: 11.49 (Whispersync)

Each book in the YA fantasy series The Lunar Chronicles puts a new spin on an old fairy tale. In this first installment, Cinderella becomes a kickass mechanic, despised by her mother and stepsisters because she’s a cyborg. Admittedly, it sounds cheesy, but it works. Though it’s clear where the story is headed, spotting the imaginative ways Meyer reinvents the old fairy tale keeps the reader turning the pages. Fresh, fun, surprising, and compulsively readable.

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Shadow and Bone

Shadow and Bone

The first in a YA trilogy, rooted in Russian and Slavic myth, in which each new book is better than the one before. During a terrifying encounter on the magically-created Shadow Fold, quiet and passive Alina discovers her remarkable gift: she is a sun summoner. As she studies with the magical elite, she begins to understand how she has the power to save her kingdom—or ruin it, if her gift falls into the wrong hands. A magical coming-of-age story.

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Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour

Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour

$10.99$2.99

For fans of Sarah Dessen and Jenny Han. After her family (or what’s left of it) impulsively moves from California to Connecticut, Amy has to get her car cross-country. There’s just one problem: because of a tragic accident, Amy doesn’t drive. Enter Roger, an old family friend who volunteers to come along for the ride, and who is dealing with his own heartbreak. Before long, the two friends decide to ditch her mom’s carefully-orchestrated route in favor of the scenic route, stopping to see familiar haunts, old loves, and plenty of small town America. Matson adds color to this sweet story with emails, receipts, and playlists galore. Sure to inspire wanderlust. If you like this, read Since You’ve Been Gone next.

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The Book Thief

The Book Thief

$9.99$2.99

"You are going to die," begins this 2006 novel. A fitting beginning to a story about hard things: a little girl and her family struggling to endure in WWII Nazi Germany. The characters are interesting and unexpected, right down to the unusual narrator. You'll see why this was an instant staple on school reading lists when it was published ten years ago, and why it has captured the hearts of readers from age 10 to 110. Beautiful, haunting, fascinating, hopeful.

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Winter

Winter

$11.99$2.99

Coming November 10. I blew through Fairest last week and now I can't wait to read this fifth and last installment of The Lunar Chronicles. Come on, November!

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The Mother Daughter Book Club #7

The Mother Daughter Book Club #7

Sarah and I blew through the The Mother Daughter Book Club series in December, and now we're impatiently waiting for the seventh and final book. Coming Summer 2015.

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Fairest: The Lunar Chronicles

Fairest: The Lunar Chronicles

$9.99$2.99

I inhaled the first three books of The Lunar Chronicles on vacation last summer and have been waiting impatiently for the next installment ever since. Fairest hits shelves January 27. The series' final book Winter, coming November 2015, is also on my list.

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The Day the Angels Fell

The Day the Angels Fell

5.95 (AUDIBLE)

Neil Gaiman meets Madeleine L'Engle. Shawn Smucker's excellent YA novel, and I just found out another podcast guest Adam Verner read the audiobook! Listen to Shawn on Episode 84 of What Should I Read Next, and Adam Verner on Episode 31. I'm a longtime fan of Smucker's nonfiction. Read my mini-review here. The ebook is not on sale, but you do not have to be an Audible member to get this price.

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The Hunger Games Trilogy

The Hunger Games Trilogy

In the post-apocalyptic country of Panem, 12 poor districts are each forced to send two tributes to the oppressive Capitol’s annual Hunger Games: a gladitorial-style competition where the teens are forced to fight each other to the death while the district’s citizens have to watch. But rebellion is already brewing in the districts, and the Capitol gets more than it bargained for when Katniss Everdeen volunteers to take her sister’s place as tribute.

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Harry Potter Series

Harry Potter Series

Orphaned Harry Potter has no idea how famous he is until he turns 11 and receives his invitation to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, opening up a whole world of magic and muggles, potions and spells, friends and enemies. The series is now available in ebook form--which makes it a lot easier to take a whole boxed set on vacation. Starting June 19, Amazon Prime members can borrow Harry Potter books for free from the Kindle lending library, (though borrowing is limited to one book a month at this time).

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The Fault in Our Stars

The Fault in Our Stars

$9.99$2.99Audiobook: 7.49 (Whispersync)

The title of this YA hit riffs Shakespeare: wholly appropriate for this story of teenage star-crossed lovers (and cancer patients). 16-year-old narrator Hazel is smart, funny, and sincere, and she tells a great story. Quirky, charming, heartbreaking.

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Eleanor & Park

Eleanor & Park

$9.99$2.99Audiobook: 12.99 (Whispersync)

I finished this one on a weekday afternoon when I was supposed to be working, because all I wanted to do was finish this book. (Interestingly, I also inhaled Rowell's newest, Landline, which just came out yesterday. But I didn't like it nearly as much.)

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All the Bright Places

All the Bright Places

$9.99$1.99Audiobook: 12.99 (Whispersync)

The publisher describes this as The Fault in Our Stars meets Eleanor & Park, which sounds right to me. This is Niven's eighth novel, but her first for young adult readers, inspired by her friend's experience with mental illness and suicide. Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of their high school's bell tower. It's unclear who saves whom, but an unlikely friendship is born between the troubled bad boy and grieving good girl. But it's only a matter of time before things begin to fall apart.

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Shuffle, Repeat

Shuffle, Repeat

Think When Harry Met Sally for the YA crowd. I read this in a day. Two teens who seem like total opposites are thrown together, not exactly happily, and each discover there's more to the other than meets the eye. The book unfolds in a series of rides to school, and comes complete with playlist. Perfect for Morgan Matson fans. Published May 3, 2016.

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Saint Anything
Suffer Love

Suffer Love

I enjoyed this, especially the literary references woven into the story. Sam and Hadley meet at high school and fall in love, but Sam soon discovers an unfortunate (think: Romeo and Juliet) connection between their parents. He can't bear to tell Hadley, which simplifies—and complicates—their relationship. This is a smart, well-executed teen romance that also does a good job of exploring the joy and pain of love, and the devastating ripple effect of a single decision. Published May 3, 2016.

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The Age of Miracles: A Novel

The Age of Miracles: A Novel

$16.00$1.99

The writing is okay and the plot gets a little muddy in the middle, but the concept of this YA almost-apocalyptic novel is brilliant: the rotation of the earth is slowing down, and the wheels are coming off. A little science fiction + a little coming-of-age make for a good read, if not a must-read.

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Passenger

Passenger

$9.99$2.99Audiobook: 3.99 (Whispersync)

Part historical romance, part time-travel adventure. 17-year-old Etta is a talented violinist about to make her debut in New York City. But her future changes in a moment when her mentor is killed and she suddenly finds herself aboard a sailing ship ... in 1776. She's soon indoctrinated into a whole new dimension, and a world family secrets. The book ends on a major cliffhanger: there's clearly more to come. (I'll be reading book 2.) Reminiscent of Outlander and Sara Zarr's The Lucy Variations.

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Peter and the Starcatchers

Peter and the Starcatchers

$17.103.95 (AUDIBLE ONLY)

Bestselling funny guy Dave Barry turns to Kid Lit in this fantasy tale, a prequel of sorts to J. M. Barrie's Peter Pan. Great characters, daring adventure, and not a small amount of hijinks. Jim Dale narrates.

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The First Time She Drowned

The First Time She Drowned

When she was 16, Cassie was wrongly admitted to a psychiatric hospital—by her mother. Now, at age 18, she struggles to find her true self and her independence at college, but her tormented relationship with her mother threatens to pull her under. For fans of R. J. Anderson's Ultraviolet. Published March 15, 2016.

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Since You’ve Been Gone

Since You’ve Been Gone

$9.99$1.99

From the publisher: "Emily is about to take some risks and have the most unexpected summer ever in this new novel from the best-selling author of Second Chance Summer and Amy and Roger's Epic Detour."

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With Malice

With Malice

$9.99$1.99Audiobook: 7.49 (Whispersync)

The publisher says this is perfect for fans of We Were Liars and The Girl on the Train, and after reading it myself I can't argue with that. Yale-bound student Jill wakes up in a hospital bed with no memory of the last six weeks, only to discover that her best friend was killed on their Italian Adventures Abroad trip, and Jill is accused of her murder. There are definite echoes of Amanda Knox here. The real interest in this cinematic novel isn't the characters (a little thin) but the twisty plotting and Jill's frustrated attempts to unravel what happened, what people think happened, and what she remembers happening. Publication date June 7, 2016.

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Looking for Alaska

Looking for Alaska

$4.99$2.99

John Green's 2005 novel was the most challenged book of 2015; according to the American Library Association, the most frequently cited reasons for the requests to remove it from a school or library were "offensive language and "sexually explicit descriptions." John Green responded, "What usually happens with Looking for Alaska is that a parent chooses one page of the novel to send to an administrator and then the book gets banned without anyone who objects to it having read more than that one particular page.”

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Magyk (Septimus Heap, Book 1)

Magyk (Septimus Heap, Book 1)

$4.99$1.99Audiobook: 7.49 (Whispersync)

My kids are hooked on this series. From Publishers Weekly: "Fantasy fans on the younger side of Harry Potter will find a good jolt of action, mystery and humor in Corduner's light and swift reading of this magyk-filled adventure."

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Reign Rain
This Is What Happy Looks Like

This Is What Happy Looks Like

This is such a fun read for anyone who has a soft spot in their heart for a solid YA novel, and it's a must-read if you loved the movie Notting Hill. When a teenage Hollywood star mistypes an email address, his message ends up in the inbox of a small-town teenage girl in Maine. The two strike up a witty correspondence, even though (or really, because) she doesn't know who he is. When his latest film is shot on location in her town, the relationship moves from online to real life. But the paparazzi make his life miserable, and the girl has secrets of her own.

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Mother-Daughter Book Camp (The Mother-Daughter Book Club #7)
Heartless
Tell Me Three Things

Tell Me Three Things

$10.99$1.99Audiobook: 12.99 (Whispersync)

I feel like I've been holding out on you on this one because I read and loved this book months ago. (I DID recommend it on this episode of What Should I Read Next with Leigh Kramer.) A girl-next-door type suddenly finds herself in an elite California prep school, and has to figure out how to navigate this new privileged world while still grieving her mother's death. When she gets an email from an unidentified boy who calls himself "Somebody Nobody" offering to be her spirit guide to her new school, she doesn't want to say yes—but she really needs his help. A sweet and fun teen romance, but also a pitch-perfect portrayal of the grieving process. I couldn't stop myself from cheering for Jessie as she put her life together again. Published April 5 2016.

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