2014 Close Calls

If I Ever Get Out of Here by Eric Gansworth

imagesLewis Blake is a friendless boy living on an Indian reservation outside of town in the year 1975.  He feels extremely isolated at school until he meets George Haddonfield, the son of an officer stationed nearby.  The two quickly become friends by bonding over music, primarily Paul McCartney’s band Wings.  As the two become closer, Lewis is invited over to George’s apartment, and he discovers how drastically different reservation life is from George’s.  Embarrassed by the poverty of the reservation, Lewis keeps dodging George’s pleas to visit the rez and have both of his worlds collide.  At the same time, Lewis must take drastic steps to avoid a well-connected bully that the school refuses to do anything about.

“If I Ever Get Out of Here” is a story with great characters, genuine relationships, and realistic struggles.  This is a perfect book for college-aged kids or any adult that loves YA.

Posted by Peter on March 20, 2014

The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth LaBan

tragedyDuncan is excited to return for his senior year of high school at the prestigious Irving School and find out what was left for him in his dorm room.   At the start of each senior year there is a gift left from the previous occupant of each dorm room.  This year Duncan has the smallest room on his floor and is left a note from Tim McBeth along with a stack of CDs.  He is not sure what to make of these.  Supposedly these CDs will give him the meat for the dreaded senior thesis, otherwise known as The Tragedy Paper.  Even though the excitement of the new school year could be heard out in the hallway Duncan had to find out what is on these CDs.  He presses play and listens to Tim’s story unfold.

Tim McBeth was only at the Irving School for his senior year.  He had to get used to the ways of his new school and living on his own.  He also had many medical issues because he is an albino.  He had to be careful when exposed to bright sunlight among other things. One thing he often did to fit in was not to wear his special glasses to protect his eyes from sunlight.  Finding friends and even a possible love interest made Tim’s story even more intriguing.  As Duncan kept listening, he began to try and piece together last year’s events.

Readers are on the edge of their seats wanting to know how these characters are connected and why will these CDs be the topic for Duncan’s Tragedy Paper.  Will Tim’s brief encounter in Duncan’s life have lasting effects?   The alternating voices of Duncan and Tim will keep the reader flipping pages to find out what really happened to Tim at the Irving School!

Posted by Katharina on March 17, 2014

With only 15 titles making our final list, there are tons of awesome books left out! Here are some titles we loved for you to check out!

Fat Angie by e.E Charlton-Trujillofat_angie

Angie is fat. Her mother tells her, the kids at school definitely tell her and she knows it. She feels the burden of her weight every second of everyday, physically and emotionally. Angie is also lost, sad, depressed and a whole host of other emotions.  Her father left them.  Her mother is selfish, uncaring and unfeeling.  Her adopted brother, who used to at least be civil to her, now joins in with the other kids and taunts her. Some might say Angie brought this on herself when she tried to commit suicide at a basketball game after her sister went missing in Iraq. What did she think was going to happen after that stunt? But then KC Romance arrives.  Beautiful, punk-rock, brave KC.  And she likes Angie. She LIKES Angie A LOT.  Angie starts to see the possibility that she is Angie and not “Fat Angie”.  She is inspired to try out for the varsity basketball team in honor of her sister, who was the star player.  And while training, she finds a friend in her neighbor Jake.  And through try-outs and making the team, she finds a mentor and friend in Coach Laden. This is a poignant, coming of age novel where Fat Angie discovers that she is not just what everyone sees on the outside, that she can be and can do so much more than people think.

Posted by Keri on March 13, 2014

The Diviners by Libba Bray

divinersEvie was sent to New York after causing a scandal in her Ohio home town.  The year is 1926, and Evie is living in the most exciting city in the world.  The only problem: Evie has to live with her uncle and help him with the occult museum he runs–all while hiding her own supernatural powers.  But when her uncle is brought in to advise on a serial murder investigation, Evie wonders if her powers might help for once.  Evie must be careful though, because Naughty John may find her. If you like scary murder mysteries, then this is the book for you.  Naughty John is as creepy as bad guys come, and you may end up looking over your shoulder every time someone you hear whistling.  Libba Bray has created a large cast of characters—Evie is one of many, and their storylines slowly move closer and intersect as the story progresses.  The Diviners is the first book in a trilogy; so, if you leave this book wanting more, don’t worry, it is coming.

Posted by Beth on March 6, 2014

wise young fool Wise Young Fool by Sean Beaudoin

The events that land Richie Sudden in juvie for 90 days start way before the definitive event that forces him there. As with most things in life, it concerns a girl, his band, his messed up family, and his best friend. Richie and his best friend set out to win a local Battle of the Bands event and hopefully rise to super star status. It’s their last chance to make a mark on their small town before they graduate to the world of adults. Richie is a bit obsessed with a girl named Ravenna Woods, who only seems to notice him when he’s not noticing her. Then there is his home life, his sister is gone forever, his dad abandoned the family, and his mom is now living with her girlfriend, all things Richie doesn’t want to face. Then there is the matter of a certain teacher who everyone, except Richie loves. He wants to get him too. Senior year is off to a rough start, and we all know it ends in juvenile hall. Wise Young Fool is a stand out rock ‘n roll adventure that will make you think. If you loved Winger, you will find Richie and Ryan Dean to be sort of similar souls, with their insight into a year of their lives.

Posted by Katie on March 4th, 2014

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