By Jan Pease
October 14 marks the end of Teen Read Week 2017, “Unleash Your Story.” This week of encouraging teens to use their libraries began in 1998. In honor of Teen Read Week, here are some interesting new books for young adults.
“Truthers” is a new novel by Geoffrey Girard. Publishers Weekly said, “It’s a fast-paced nail-biter with a resourceful heroine, packed with surprises that force readers to question every revelation and take nothing at face value.” The plot revolves around conspiracy theories about the attack on U.S. buildings on September 11, 2001. This book received 4.6 out of 5 stars at Amazon with no negative reviews, which is remarkable. I have a difficult time accepting that an event in my life time is considered history.
Libba Bray has a new book in her “Diviners” series, “Before the Devil Breaks You.” “Booklist” says its “a gripping, unsettling read that peels back the shiny surface of the American Dream. Like the ghosts facing the Diviners, Bray’s novel has teeth.” Most reviews at Amazon were positive, but one said, “I’m done with this series. Loved the first book. Liked the second book. Hate this book.” I may have to read this series yet.
“The Arsonist,” by Stephenie Oaks, is another complicated thriller with “history, lies, humor, and grief” according to the Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books. I love that professional reviews are available at amazon.com along with reviews by “everyday people.” The plot of this book centers on events that occurred in 1989, just before the Berlin Wall fell. Using the diary of a freedom fighter who died in 1989, the protagonists try to piece together events leading to the death of freedom fighter Ava Dreyman. Again, it’s interesting to see an event that I remember portrayed as history.
With all of the talk about the border with Mexico in the news, “Disappeared,” by Francisco X. Stork, is a timely read. Mr. Stork tackles the issues of sex trafficking, drugs, kidnapping, and poverty in Juarez, Mexico. These issues seem to be a bit much for a children’s book, but I think “Disappeared” is written for an older audience.
“The Final Spark,” the seventh and final book in the “Michael Vey” series by Richard Paul Evans, has just been released. Yes, Richard Paul Evans is THAT Richard Paul Evans, famous for “The Christmas Box.” It’s been interesting to see his success with a crossover Young Adult Sci-Fi series. Most of the reviewers who chimed in at Amazon liked the book and were sad the series is ending.
Litchfield has teens who read! I have often mentioned that right now is kind of a golden age of young adult novels. Adults enjoy reading them, too. Sometimes novels can get bogged down with too much character development, or too much sense of place. I’m not afraid to say that I like to read young adult fiction! These and many more exciting novels are waiting for you at Litchfield Public Library.