September 23

Delilah Green Doesn’t Care by Ashley Herring Blake

Delilah Green Doesn’t Care, written by Ashley Herring Blake, is not your standard rom-com.  A freelance photographer from New York, and a single mother who owns a bookstore in a small town; seems pretty standard.  However, add in that it is a queer freelance photographer who is working for her stepsister’s wedding, and a single mother who is best friends with the soon to be bride.  The evolution of their romance starts off as a dare, but eventually becomes a reality.  The tension rises and falls between the two girls, but also between the bride-to-be and her fiance.  A rom-com paired with a wedding stopper storyline creates the perfect amount of balance between the love story and the outside world.

-Luka

September 23

Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon

Everything Everything was about a girl, Maddy, who had a severe illness that prevented her from going outside. She spent the entirety of her life, 17 years, inside her home surrounded by her white room and white clothes and white furniture. Her mother is a nurse and her main caretaker and is very concerned for her health. When a new boy moves into the house next to them, Maddy becomes intrigued. They communicate through technology and through their matching windows. Everything goes well until her mother finds out they’ve been sneaking around seeing each other.

I loved this book, it was a very intriguing love story and the ending had me crying. There was such a good build up to the ending and at some points I had to stop myself from reading. Yoon captured the emotions of the characters so well, it was a book that consumed me. I think it was very important and interesting that Yoon created such a strong bond between Maddy and her mom, yet she showed the struggles and the obstacles of maturing relationships.

-Tatiana

September 20

Vespertine by Margaret Rogerson

The author has described her own work as heavily influenced by the story of Joan of Arc and the more recent Venom films. In a world in which ghosts tend to remain and cause trouble for the living, a large portion of religious life is dedicated to laying the dead to rest, a task that Artemisia has been learning her entire life. However, when her convent is disrupted, she is forced to make a pact (hence the Venom reference) with a revenant to survive. So begins her larger fight to counter a flood of ghosts. This book is not exceptional for its plot, but rather for the characters’ interactions and world-building, which maintain the pacing of the story despite a slower second act. Those 13 to 15 might best enjoy this book as a Halloween-themed reading binge.

-Sasha

September 19

The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han

I reread the book series The Summer I Turned Pretty after watching the TV series on Amazon and fell in love all over again.  The first time I read the book was when I was 12 years old, so some time had passed since the last time I saw the words that the amazing Jenny Han wrote. 

The book starts out with the main character Isabel, nicknamed Belly, arriving at a beach house for summer vacation.  The reader then learns that she goes there every year with her family friends (including 2 boys her age), but this summer is different.  She has grown up this summer and now is pretty.  And the boys know it.  So the summer becomes a spicy one with love, sadness, hate and passion.  

I really recommend the book The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han.  It was an amazing reread for someone who doesn’t read books again typically (except for Song of Achilles).  The book was complex in story, but simple in reading to make it an enjoyable beach book.  Even though it was easy to read, it had twists and turns keeping the reader involved and not wanting to put it down.  The book has a heartwarming tone, transporting you back to summer!

-Gabi

September 19

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Clockwork Angel opens with Tessa Gray, who just moved to London, discovering that she has powers usually attributed with demons. Living in a world full of Shadowhunters, who work to kill demons each day, she is terrified and fascinated about why she has these abilities. She quickly becomes friends with Will and Jem, parabatai who are sworn to protect each other. Together, the three friends work to uncover Tessa’s true identity while managing with Jem’s deadly disease.

I absolutely loved reading this book (and the rest of the series)! Every single character in the book is exciting and realistic – battling their own internal demons that most people can relate to, along with the real demons too! Every time you think that you know what is going to happen, Clare introduces a new major plot twist that simultaneously clears up the plot while adding a whole new level. The relationships between all of the characters is really what makes this book so special and I would 100% recommend reading this to anyone.

Rating: 5/5

-Anna

Category: fantasy | LEAVE A COMMENT
September 16

Kisses and Croissants by Anne-Sophie Jouhanneau

Mia Jenrow  believes it is her destiny to become a ballerina. Spending her summer in Paris, at an elite dance program,  Mia has six weeks to achieve her dreams: to snag an audition with one of the world’s most prestigious ballet companies. Between her rival, who will stop at nothing to win, her impossible instructor, and especially Louis– the devastatingly attractive and charming French boy who sets his sights on her, Paris proves to be a little more complicated than she anticipated. This summer was supposed to be about ballet, but Mia may just discover more than she bargained for. 

I loved this. Ballet, France, Travel, Romance. It has everything I could ever want in a book. It was an easy read, but enjoyable and fun. You follow this young American girl exploring Paris on her own, fighting for what she believes is her fate. It is magical and beautiful and a little bit exhilarating. The ballet aspect fits perfectly within the story, it adds that level of conflict and self-demand that keeps the plot moving. This book encompasses the dreams of so many young people, to travel, to find love, to achieve your greatest aspirations. I 100% recommend this book to anyone who loves love, wants to travel, or if you just want something lighthearted to occupy your time.

Rating: 4.5/5

-Camryn

Category: Romance | LEAVE A COMMENT
September 16

Threads and Flames by Esther Friesner

Threads and Flames by Esther Friesner is a historical fiction novel about labor for women in the 1910s. The story introduces Raisa, a 14 year old Jewish girl from Poland who traveled to America in hopes of finding her sister, Henda. On the ship sailing to America, she meets Zusa, an Italian traveling to America to meet the rest of her family, and Brina, a young girl of 5 whose mother died during the journey. When they get to America, Raisa is separated from Zusa and forced to fend for herself and Brina. She spends the next few days looking for a place for her and Brina to stay, but with no work, people don’t want to take her in fear of her having no rent money. She ends up at a synagogue, and meets Gavrel, a boy about her age who invites her to stay at his parents’ house. Raisa meets the Kamenskys, who take her and Brina in and help her get a job. She finds work at a clothing store, and though the boss is harsh and the pay is not good, she
stays there. Raisa attends English classes to help her learn English, and meets Luciana, who helps her find work at the Triangle Shirtwasit Factory, where the pay and boss is better, but Raisa still feels bored after a while.  She and Gavrel fall in love, and attempt to keep it a secret from his parents.One day when work is ending, there is a fire at the factory, and Raisa finds herself in the middle of it.

-Sophie

September 7

Loveless by Alice Oseman

Loveless is about a teenage girl named Georgia
who navigates her way through college without feeling a desire to kiss
anyone. She meets Sunil, who teaches her about asexuality and ace
and Georgia starts to explore her sexuality along with dealing with the
stress of college. She and her friends Pip, Jason, and Rooney start a
Shakespeare club and begin practicing to keep the club alive and the
members as friends, along with helping Rooney deal with her mental
health.

-Sophia

September 7

Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare 

This book follows Cordelia Carstairs, a Shadowhunter, through her adventures becoming a hero in a brand new city – London. She quickly becomes close with other warriors in the area like James and Lucie Herondale, falling in love with James, who is sworn to marry someone else. After a series of demon attacks, Cordelia is forced into fighting sooner than expected and finds that she has her own connection to the violence. 

I really liked this book! The characters are extremely well written and realistic – no one wakes up at 3am and runs 15 miles before training for another 8 hours while balancing school and friends. Cassandra Clare does a great job of building character relationships and creating a world with complexity that mirrors our own. Even though this book is about killing demons and evil beings, I found myself relating to what certain characters are feeling or how they react to different situations. Character relationships and development throughout the book make it much more interesting and easier to read rather than a 350 page book with battle scenes every other page. So, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who is having a hard time reading lately, because Clare does an excellent job creating an incredibly immersive world and a story that is hard to put down. 

Rating: 5/5

-Anna

September 7

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Of Mice and Men is an exceptional story that included entertaining characters with a variety of personalities. This book accurately portrays the setting of The Great Depression, while following an intense relationship between characters George and Lennie. The novel also includes mature themes such as ‘the power of hopes and dreams’ and ‘the power of relationships.’ While intense, the plot keeps the reader engaged by including short and straightforward sections throughout the story. I would overall give this reading 4.5 stars. 

-Maria