Staff Picks Young Adult Fiction

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September 2021


by A.S. King

Dig is a book of several perspectives. We are quickly introduced to a vast cast of characters with the help of a cast list at the beginning of the early chapters. Elderly Marla and Gottfried prepare their home for an Easter celebration with the help of The Shoveler, a teen boy who is new to town, who is painting their home. Malcolm is on his way to his grandparents’ (Marla and Gottfried), house while his father goes through another round of chemotherapy. Loretta escapes the abuse of her living situation by managing her flea circus. Can I Help You ignores her racist mother and focuses on her job at Arby’s and dealing drugs. The Freak visits all of them and more with her ability to zap herself all around the world. King weaves an intense story that connects them all with a writing style that is both hypnotic and uncomfortable. Dig is a book that may not be for every reader, but is a must-read for others.
This book is available at the library and on OverDrive/Libby as an ebook and e audiobook.
Recommended by: Brandi Smits, Youth Services Manager

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

August 2021

Dancing at the Pity Party

by Tyler Feder

Tyler Feder describes, in poignant detail, how it felt to live through her mother’s cancer diagnosis and subsequent death. The graphic novel style lends itself to both humor and pathos.  

Recommended by: Becky McCormack, Youth Services Assistant Manager

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

Ashfall Legacy

by Pittacus Lore

By the author of the series, I Am Number Four, comes a new novel, sure to be a series about Syd, a half alien young man. After discovering a locator that indicates his father is still alive, he is determined to try and locate his father who went missing many years ago in the vastness of space. One big problem, if earthlings leave Earth they become super strong but die when they return to Earth. Syd heads out with his uncle to the planet Denza, where lots of action and adventure and monsters and magic rings keep the pages turning.

Recommended by: Joan Stoiber, Youth Services Reference Librarian 1

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

Defy the Night

by Brigid Kemmerer

This book will be released in September of 2021 and I’m recommending that you put a hold on it right away to be one of the first ones to read it! A sickness is running rampage through the kingdom of Kandala. Outlaws Tessa and Wes are doing everything they can to help the people who can’t afford medicine, even if that means breaking the law. Meanwhile Prince Corrick the Cruel is doing everything he can to protect his brother the king, all while trying to stop a revolution from happening. In a kingdom where no one can be trusted can the outlaws and royalty find a common ground to save everyone? Or is the kingdom doomed to fall? If you’re a fan of Brigid Kemmerer’s Cursebreaker series, I highly recommend picking up this book as your next read!

Recommended by: Erin Faxel, Youth Services Teen Librarian

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

A Lesson in Vengeance

by Victoria Lee

Felicity Morrow has been away from the boarding school she has called home for a year now ever since the death of her girlfriend on campus grounds. Now she’s back for her senior year, just wanting to focus on her thesis and graduate. Felicity tries to turn a blind eye to the schools dark past dealing with witchcraft and mysterious deaths. If only the new girl, a prodigy writer named Ellis Haley would let her forget. When Ellis asks Felicity to help her research the Dalloway Five for her second book, she can’t say no. And given Felicity’s past history with the arcane that makes her the perfect source. But when history begins to repeat itself on the grounds of Dalloway, Felicity will have to now face the darkness that haunts the school and that lurks within herself. This dark, atmospheric, twisty thriller is the perfect read to start getting you in the mood for spooky season.
Recommended by: April Balasa, Patron Services Clerk

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction


by Tiffany D. Jackson

This very intense book deals with misogyny and physical and drug abuse. It is not for the faint of heart. Enchanted, the main character, is in high school and dreams of a successful singing career. When the legendary superstar Korey Fields sees her at an audition and offers to mentor her, Enchanted is thrilled. Her parents are somewhat skeptical but allow her to tour with Mr. Fields. Things start spirally down fairly rapidly and soon Enchanted feels stuck and hopeless.

This book is available in the library and on OverDrive/Libby as an ebook and e audiobook.

Recommended by: Becky McCormack, Youth Services Assistant Manager

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

July 2021

Firekeeper’s Daughter

by Angeline Boulley

They say bad luck comes in threes, and Daunis Fontaine can prove it. As a biracial and unenrolled tribal member, Daunis’ eighteenth year is spent trying to figure out where her place is among her Native American Ojibwe community in Sault Ste. Marie. After the loss of her beloved Uncle David and her GrandMary’s subsequent stroke, Daunis’ world crumbles as she’s forced to face head on the ugly influence of meth that is ravaging her Native community. Using her scientific prowess and fueled by the passion of protecting her people, Daunis is thrusted into the heart of a criminal investigation that forces her to discover what it takes to truly become a strong Anishinaabe kwe (Ojibwe woman). Daunis’ story is heartwrenching in all the right ways—perfect for any teen or adult reader looking for a complex story dipped in rich characterization, culture and strength.

This book is available in the library and on OverDrive/Libby as an eBook.

Recommended by: Ola Gronski, Youth Services Assistant

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction


by Lish McBride

This magical romp is a Beauty and the Beast retelling just with the roles reversed. Merit gets cursed to live life forever as a beast after not fulfilling her obligation to marry a prince. She must agree to marry a man of her mother’s choosing before her eighteenth birthday. Tevin helps his family with their cons. As the prettiest boy in his big family, it’s his job to temp pretty rich girls away from their engagements else their parents pay him off. But when his mother runs afoul of the beast, she decided to trade Tevin in exchange for her own freedom. This is Beauty and the Beast like you have never seen it before.
Recommended By: April Balasa, Patron Services Clerk

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

Blood Water Paint

by Joy McCullough

This book in verse takes place in the 1600’s. Artemisia Gentileschi loses her mother at age twelve. Her choice is then to live as a nun in a convent or grind pigment for her father’s paint. She chooses to become her father’s apprentice and becomes a very talented painter. But, to be a woman in Italy at that time is not easy and all the power lies with the men. McCullough weaves Artemisia’s story with the stories of the ancient heroines Susanna and Judith, who become the subjects of Artemisia’s paintings.

This book is available in the library and on OverDrive as an ebook.

Recommended by: Becky McCormack, Youth Services Assistant Manager

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder

by Holly Jackson

Pippa Fitz Amobi never truly believed that Sal Singh was responsible for the murder of his high school girlfriend, Andie Bell.  So when Pip enrolls in a senior capstone class, she decides to make her capstone project a re-investigation of the murder even though the police, and the town, have believed the case was closed for the past 5 years.  As Pip digs deeper into her investigation, the list of suspects grows, as does the danger to herself and her loved ones.  This is an excellent read for fans of true crime.  The audiobook has a cast of performers for the various roles, bringing the story to life even more. Highly Recommend.
This book is available in the l;ibrary and on OverDrive/Libby as an ebook and e audiobook
Recommended by: Stephanie Thomas, Youth Services Preschool Services Coordinator

Posted in: Young Adult Fiction

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