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Y.A. Books

Fight Back

Fight Backby Brent R. Sherrard

Paperback, 176 pages
Published September 1st 2015 by Lorimer
4 Stars


My Review: This is a high interest, low vocabulary YA book about a very sensitive issue. Tyler is physically and emotionally abused by his alcoholic father. His mother, fed up with her husband, took his younger sister and left, leaving 12 year old Tyler behind. When he is beaten that night by his dad, he finally tells a teacher what is happening. He is moved into a group home that night and then goes to live with his paternal grandmother. He is angry, dislikes everyone, hates school and wants to be left alone. When he makes a really stupid mistake, he is arrested and his grandmother no longer wants him to live with her. Figuring he is heading off to jail, he is offered a lifeline. He’s taken in by the Conways and they both show love and acceptance – but that’s not enough – it’s when Wayne Conway shows him how to channel and control his anger by learning to box that he begins to think he can be good at something. He begins running, lifting weights, learning the moves, and the thinking behind it that help him develop some self-respect. As he begins to feel better he has other successes in his life. A great story to show how and why some people may act the way they do. It also shows how finding self-respect and love from others can save someone from a life of self-destruction. A great book for any high school library and especially for those reluctant readers. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book via netgalley.

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Before I Let You Go

Before I Let Goby Marieke Nijkamp

Hardcover, 358 pages
Published January 2nd 2018 by Sourcebooks Fire
3 Stars


My Review: I read the last book from Marieke Nijkamp and really liked it, I had high hopes for this one, but unfortunately it does not measure up. I liked the short chapters and the underlying story about mental health but parts of it were a bit strange. When the town grabs onto this teen and uses her manic episodes to heal themselves and the town, it was difficult to understand. How parents went along with this was a huge mystery to me. As far as a YA book goes, teens might enjoy it very much and the message of accepting those with mental illness is very timely. The character of Corey was well written and it was easy to feel her emotions but most of the other characters were shallow and hard to understand their motives and actions. I do not want to give away the story so will leave it at that. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book via Netgalley.

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Beneath a Scarlet Sky

Beneath a Scarlet Skyby Mark T. Sullivan

Paperback, 524 pages
Published May 1st 2017 by Lake Union Publishing
4.5 Stars

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Between Shades of Gray

Between Shades of Grayby Ruta Sepetys

Hardcover, 344 pages
Published March 22nd 2011 by Philomel Books
4.5 Stars

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An Eagle in the Snow

An Eagle in the Snowby Michael Morpurgo

Published October 8th 2015 by HarperCollinsChildren’sBooks (first published October 1st 2015)

4.5 Stars

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Salt to the Sea

Salt to the Seaby Ruta Sepetys

Published February 2nd 2016 by Philomel Books

5 Stars

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The Gingerbread Girl

The Gingerbread Girlby Sheila Newberry

Published October 20th 2016 (first published November 30th 2007) by Bonnier Publishing
3.5 Stars

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The Only Road

The Only Roadby Alexandra Diaz

Published October 4th 2016 by Paula Wiseman Books / Simon & Schuster

5 Stars Continue reading “The Only Road”

The Rock of Ivanore (Celestine Chronicles #1)

The Rock of Ivanore (Celestine Chronicles, #1)by Laurisa White Reyes

Published May 15th 2012 by Tanglewood

4.5 Stars

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