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Teens

Escape from Syria

By Samya Kullab

Escape from Syria book coverThis tale gives a fictional but all too real account of a family’s flight from war and the terrors of a refugee camp. Told from the point of view of Amira, it gives some light background to the war and the reasons why so many people fled. Once out of Syria, the family settles in Lebanon, but Lebanon is fearful of war coming to them, and does not allow most Syrians to work or own homes. Out of money, the family are forced to live a meagre existence in a refugee camp.
This story also touches on the difficulty of getting out of the camps to a safe country, of getting medical attention, of educational opportunities. It doesn’t take sides, just tells how things are. Though moving to Europe or North America means having access to these things, it also shows a new set of difficulties, learning a new language, new rules, new geography and climate.

Black Chuck

Black Chuck book cover (Windigo)Réal and Evie are mourning the death of Shaun - his best friend, her boyfriend, and the father of her unborn child. They are struggling to reconcile their feelings about his death, and even though they weren't very close before Shaun's death - their guilt and knowledge that maybe Shaun wasn't the all-around good guy he wanted people to see is bringing them together.

This book has some very dark themes but if you like the tv show Supernatural at its darkest points, you will likely enjoy the mix of indigenous mythology, grief and tragedy along with some amazing and vivid writing.

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown

By Holly Black

a pale hand dangles with the book title on it

 

In 'Coldest Girl...,' Holly Black has created a vivid world that's not too different than ours -- except that everyone knows the truth that vampires exist. When parents are absent, teenagers have "sundown parties" where no one can leave, and they've shut the doors and windows and warded off the vampires for the night.

A Blade So Black

By L.L. McKinney

A black teenage girl holds up a blade, framed in an ace of spades

In this brand new fantasy novel (the first in a series), Alice Kingston is an African American teenager, surrounded by police violence in Atlanta, when she suddenly enters the dreamscape world of Wonderland, and is transformed into a fully-fledged hero.

Dumplin'

By Julie Murphy

Dumplin' book cover: a woman in fancy dress lifts her arms triumphantly

Did you watch the movie Dumplin' on Netflix or plan on watching it when it's out on DVD? Willowdean (called "Dumplin'" by her beauty queen diet-obsessed mom), is a Dolly Parton-obssessed teen who is confident in her own body - even if other people call her "fat." It's a funny and quick read about a beauty pageant takeover, drag queens, and friendship.

The Hate U Give

The Hate U Give book cover

The Hate U Give

By Angie Thomas

This book is the real deal. Not only is it the best YA book I have read this year, it is the best book I have read this year period. It got me from the very first page, and never let me go. If you read any book this year, let it be this one.

A Girl Called Echo

cover image of A girl called Echo

A Girl Called Echo (V.1 of the Pemmican Wars)

By Katherena Vermette

This beautiful graphic novel will appeal to just about any age. Echo is a lonely 13 year old Metis girl in a new school who, in the middle of history class, finds herself transported to a bison hunt in 1814 on the Saskatchewan prairie. Echo slips back and forth in time, visiting a Metis camp and witnessing the Battle of Seven Oaks.

Crafting with Feminism

book cover of Crafting with Feminism

Crafting with Feminism: 25 girl-powered projects to smash the patriarchy

 By Bonnie Burton

If you have ever had the itch to embroider some sassy words or felt the urge to make some super heroine wrist cuffs, this book may be for you.