MADreads for Teens

A review of Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger

It's been a while since I've read a rave-worthy young adult novel. But lately I've hit the bonanza with several titles hitting on all notes. Some of the hits aren't yet published so I'll leave those for a future post, but one of them is out and available and I'm thrilled that I can tell you about it. Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger is set in the same ...read more

Reviewed by Jane J on
March 12, 2013 | 0 comments
A review of Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion

What will the inevitable zombie apocalypse look like? How will it happen? How will humanity--the Living--survive? How does it feel be be a zombie? And how--in this post-apocalyptic world-- would a zombie find love? That last question has never, in all my feverish wonderings, occurred to me. And yet, I give you...Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion. The main protagonist of our story is a zombie. You got it, a flesh-eating, brain-chomping, reeking member of the undead, or the Dead, in this ...read more

Reviewed by Tina - Central on
March 5, 2013 | 1 comment
A review of Peanut by Ayun Halliday

Starting a new high school is not easy. Starting a new high school under false pretenses is even harder. Starting a new high school while faking a peanut allergy? Oh, that's not going to end well. Sadie Wildhack fakes a peanut allergy in order to make friends at her new high school and it totally backfires. Even though peanut allergies may be life threatening, they're just not glamorous enough to sway jaded high school students into providing a)sympathy b)respect c)friendship. Or are they? The ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
February 27, 2013 | 0 comments
A review of The Diviners by Libba Bray

I'm going to be completely honest about this: I had been looking forward to reading The Diviners for most of 2012 but when it first showed up on the hold shelf for me and I discovered it was 578 pages, I paused a little. OK, I paused a lot, like, for 28 days, and then had to bring the book back to the library without even having started it.  So I placed it on hold again and decided to dedicate myself to it when it next arrived. That time is now. Here's the scoop: Evangeline (Evie ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
January 22, 2013 | 0 comments
A review of Never Fall Down by Patricia McCormick

At first I found the language jarring, but as I continued to read, I found myself engrossed in McCormick’s fictionalization of Arn Chorn-Pond’s story of his years as a child caught in a horrific combination of genocide and war in Cambodia during the reign of the Kmehr Rouge.When the Kmehr Rouge come to his village and begin rounding up his family, friends and neighbors, Arn’s Aunt advises him to “bend low, and then bend lower” in order to survive. From age 11 to 14, Arn bends in ways no one ...read more

Reviewed by Karen on
January 11, 2013 | 0 comments
A review of Embrace by Jessica Shirvington

Everything changes for Violet Eden when she finds out that she must make a decision on her 17th birthday that could help to save the world. Can she become an angel and sacrifice her life, or should she deny her ancestry and risk everything? And, if her decision wasn't compelling enough, her heart is  being torn apart by Phoenix, a sexy stranger, and her steadfast companion and protector, Lincoln. Action, romance, angels and demons -- this book has it all! ...read more

Reviewed by Krissy on
December 21, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of Origin by Jessica Khoury

When you're the only teenager living in a compound of secret research labs in the middle of the Amazon rainforest, life can be a bit lonely. It's even worse when you're the only person in the world who's going to live forever. In Jessica Khoury's debut novel Origin, Pia is the first and only immortal human, the result of generations of genetic experimentation by scientists who devote their lives to this hidden compound and its ethically questionable research. Pia has been raised by ...read more

Reviewed by Kylee on
December 11, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of Wonder by R.J. Palacio

I could not put this book down--it was an engrossing, emotional rollercoaster ride. Ten-year-old August (Auggie), is going to school for the very first time after being homeschooled by his mother. He is apprehensive about entering the 5th grade because of the way he looks. Auggie was born with severe facial deformities that have required extensive surgeries, but he still doesn’t look “normal.” At one point, Auggie says, “I won’t describe what I look like.  Whatever you are thinking, it’s ...read more

Reviewed by Lesley K on
December 7, 2012 | 1 comment
A review of Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

I'm not super into dragons and I probably never will be. But Clay Jannon, the new clerk at Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore in San Francisco, was obsessed with them in 6th grade and developed his most enduring relationship because of them. Clay and his best friend Neel bonded over the "The Dragon-Song Chronicles" and have remained tight ever since. "The Dragon-Song Chronicles" are referenced over and over again and ultimately help solve the puzzle that is this book, but you do not need to know ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
December 5, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of Chopsticks by Jessica Anthony and Rodrigo Corral

"Chopsticks" pretty much sums it up for me, with Scott Joplin's "The Entertainer" coming in a close second. There's something about the repetitiveness of "Chopsticks" that echoes lunacy. When I realized that Jessica Anthony and Rodrigo Corral's unusual teen mad romance utilizes this waltz to demonstrate how the main character, a piano prodigy, is careening off course, I immediately understood. No more words required. The name of this instantly recognizable tune conveys the message loud and ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
November 27, 2012 | 2 comments