Monday, December 19, 2016

Faves of 2016: Pat's Top Ten

From now til the end of the year we'll be sharing our fave books of the year! Pat is kicking us off with some of the books she loved:

This unforgettable story about a city and a family in crisis brings the summer of 1977 New York City to hot, sweaty, gritty life.

The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner
A searing slice of small town southern life not often represented in YA literature. This one lingers.
The Haters by Jesse Andrews
Jazz band camp like it’s never been portrayed turns into a righteous band road trip. You will laugh—often and out loud.
I Am Princess X by Cherie Priest
Seattle provides an atmospheric setting in this tight, page-turning  mystery  interspersed with awesome comics.
Through the story of the accomplished composer, Anderson’s riveting account of the siege of Leningrad personalizes the horror of both Stalin’s and Hitler’s impact on Russia and Leningrad, but also spotlights the remarkable courage of individuals struggling to survive.
Still Life with Tornado by A.S. King (see our full review)
Sixteen-year-old Sarah is a young artist who can’t seem to draw anymore. Something happened at school and something also happened on a family vacation in Mexico years ago. As always, A.S. King takes you to strange and dark places and makes you question what you’re reading every step of the way.
  
We Are the Ants by Shaun David Hutchison
Henry Denton is dealing with a lot--bullying, alien abductions, the potential end of the world by his hand in 144 days if he pushes the big red button. Underlying it all? How we love and how we grieve.

Solomon is sixteen years old and hasn’t left his house in three years. Go-getter Lisa is desperate to get into a highly competitive college psychology program and thinks “fixing” Solomon’s agoraphobia just might be her ticket. She enlists her charming boyfriend, Clark, to help. What could possibly go wrong?  You’ll laugh and cry as Whaley sensitively explores anxiety, vulnerability, and the importance of friendship and connections through these hugely engaging characters.

Charlotte Holmes and Jamie Watson are teen (great-great-great) descendants of the original Holmes/Watson duo but when they end up in the same Connecticut boarding school, the anti-social, analytical, Holmes (as she’s known) makes it clear she’s not looking for friends. She has secrets of own, including, as did her famous ancestor, a bit of a drug problem  But when a fellow student dies under strange circumstances, the two are thrust together to solve the crime . Watson narrates the page-turning action as Holmes uses her formidable skills and intellect to solve the murder.

American Girls by Alison Umminger
When 14-year-old Anna ends up at her half-sister’s place in L.A. after “borrowing” her step mom’s credit card to get there, she realizes that perhaps just being in California isn’t going to solve all her problems. To earn money for her return trip to Georgia, Anna agrees to do film research for a director about the 1969 Charles Manson murders, specifically the young women who followed him. Figuring out where and with whom she belongs, Anna’s journey of self-discovery is gritty, messy, and feels entirely authentic.

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