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Welcome to the book blog, featuring reviews for teens from InfoSoup librarians and users!

journey

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Author: Fern Schumer Chapman

This book written in the voice of Edith (Tiddy) explains the anguish of being sent to America, from Germany, as a child to be protected from the Nazis. It is a poignant story because the author explains how harrowing the ship voyage was; how unfamiliar everything in Chicago was; how difficult school and life would be for an immigrant who was lonely and homesick and shunned as World War II took up speed on this side of the Atlantic. What makes it all even more compelling is that the author was writing this based on true events in her family. This is a very important book and I highly recommend it to middle schoolers all the way on up. The double images of stars, the star of David, and the stars for the American military came together in a lovely synergy of loss to TWO groups on p. 200.

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Author: Nina LaCour

Colby has been best friends with Bev ever since they were young children. (They are now high school graduates.) Bev is in a band with two other young women, Meg and Alexa. The band has some end of the summer gigs before college begins. Colby is the driver for the band on this small tour. Through his eyes we discover his conflicts over who he is; how he behaves; how he misunderstands relationships around him. (I give the author a lot of credit for being able to write as a teen male protagonist.) The tour, and all of the events that the four experience during it (running Sunday to Saturday)both large and small, show how one intense week can change the course of lives. Colby finally gets both closer to Bev and, in my opinion, healthily dis-attached so that he can shape his own future. The teens witnessing of the adults in their lives and how they have coped with "life questions" gave a layer of richness to the story. This book also highlighted that no matter what stage you are in your life, there are struggles. However, art (in all its forms) is a powerful elixir.

Imagine...

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Author: Margaret Peterson Haddix

What would it be like to be a teenager in the aftermath of being a child TV star? What would it be like to have a hidden power where you could hear people who were talking about you? In this book, the protagonist Lindsay Scott is both an ex-child TV star and a person who can hear others talking about her. As the book goes on, she discovers that this ability may be within many others, too. What does this mean for Lindsay and her future? The book is set in motion when a "fan" kidnaps her. This was a strange but intriguing story that even taught a little about transcendentalism and the place it held in American history.