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"In this Scicence Fiction- Thriller, Bay Area author (and bookseller!) Parker Peevyhouse forces you to question everything that has been laid out before you. The Echo Room is 12 Monkeys for the next generation."- Reviewed by Hannah, NYMBC Coordinator
"Gutsy, sharp and truly remarkable, Natalie Parker has crafted one of the most spellbinding adventures of the year! This is female Piracy at its Best!"- Reviewed by Colleen at Books Inc. Campbell
"Hey, Kiddo gives a fantastic insight into the lives of those dealing with addiction from the sidelines. The lines are soft and personal, highlighted with a burnt orange color pallet. Deeply emotional and fantastically wrought, this one will leave you drained, but ultimately hopeful."- Reviewed by Ivy at Bookshop Santa Cruz
"If you’re in the mood for a refreshing combination of historical fiction and fantasy, GRAVE MERCY byRobin LaFevers is definitely the right read! Another bonus: this is just the first book of the His Fair Assassin trilogy, so there’s more to look forward to after you’ve turned the last page."- Reviewed by a true Teen, Ava, President of Books Inc.'s Teen Advisory Board. See her full review here.
"Comedy and pathos blend in this solid coming of age novel highlighting the difficulty of correcting lies once they are spoken. Should appeal to John Green fans."- Reviewed by Michele at Copperfields
"Unlike anything else I have read, Children of Blood and Bone marks the entrance of a new star in the YA fantasy world. I could not put this book down and devoured it in two sittings. "- Reviewed by Hillary at Copperfields
Another local Bay Area author, Randy Ribay hits a cord with this powerful novel about friendship, basketball, and one teen's mission to create a better life for his family.- Reviewed by Hannah, NYMBC Coordinator
From the bestselling author of the Shatter Me series comes a gorgeous contemporary novel inspired by her own experiences with first love, breakdancing, and the devastating impact of prejudice.
From the author of the beloved and ground-breaking novel, The Book Theif, comes another heartbreaking, and poetically written family saga.
Find all these novels in store now!
Teen Advisory Board Member Ava Reviews Grave Mercy
Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers
Ismae escapes from an abusive arranged marriage with a brute. When she arrives at the convent of Saint Mortain, the cloister of killer nuns inform her the god of Death has blessed her with violent powers and, should she accept to train under them, a great destiny. After she chooses to train as an assassin, she is given her first mission: kill a man residing in the courts of Brittany. But matters complicate once she begins falling for the very man she’s ordered to slaughter.
I absolutely adore the main character, Ismae, who needs no knight in shining armor, but didn’t let that blind her from the possibility of love. Too often books feature a “strong” female who cripples when their love interest departs, proving how strong they actually are. But my favorite aspect of this book is how women, hurt not only by men but by society’s limiting expectations, unite to heal while taking revenge on the men who have endangered other women. Ismae develops lasting friendships with females, instead of the usual girl-pitted-against-girl trope.
If you’re in the mood for a refreshing combination of historical fiction and fantasy, GRAVE MERCY by Robin LaFevers is definitely the right read! Another bonus: this is just the first book of the His Fair Assassin trilogy, so there’s more to look forward to after you’ve turned the last page.
-Review written by Ava, Age 14
- Written by By Ava, Amanda, and Alannah
So often we see authors place their black characters in minor roles with a white savior as the protagonist. So here we present to you a list of six popular fiction genres with corresponding YA novels featuring black protagonists!
1. Romance with Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon
Everything, Everything has been mentioned countless times from both the book and the movie. Maddy is allergic to everything, and can’t leave her house because of the risks, not leaving for seventeen years. Olly moves in and they make eye-contact, and Maddy knows she’s going to fall in love. A sweet, beautiful story about overcoming odds and risking it all for love is a definite, swoon-worthy must-read.
2. Action-Adventure with A Blade So Black by L. L. McKinney
Alice, trained in magic weaponry and battling Nightmares, is struggling to keep up with school and her mother. But when Alice’s mentor is mysteriously poisoned, she must travel to Wonderland, home of the Nightmares that nearly ended her before. The task is seemingly simple: find the antidote and make it back home with her head still attached to her neck. But she soon discovers it’s easier said than done!
3. Biographical Account with Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly
Space travel is easily one of America's greatest accomplishments, with its crowning glory arguably being the spectacular moon landing. Yet contrary to what was for so long believed, this wasn't achieved solely by white men, nor white women either... Meet the HIDDEN FIGURES who helped to make this amazing feat possible - several incredibly devoted and talented black women who fought to assert their rights in a world that was prejudiced against them. Beautifully written by Margot Lee Shetterly, this will be a read that you won't want to put down!
4. Fantasy withThe Belles by Dhonielle Clayton
In Orléans, every person is born ugly and gray without the help of a Belle, who controls beauty and has the power to make people beautiful. Camellia Beauregard, a Belle, wants to be chosen as the royal favorite by the Queen of Orléans and able to be acknowledged as the most talented Belle, serving the royal family. Competing with five other Belles for the position, Camellia navigates through dangerous waters to make a choice for something she truly believes in. Not only is this book a fantastic fantasy book, but it also deals with many issues prevalent in the world today.
5. Speculative Fiction with Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
After the Civil War was brought to a sudden halt when the dead began walking the battlefields, the Native and Negro Reeducation Act was enacted, requiring colored children to train in combat schools with the sole purpose of defending the privileged white people from the dead. Jane McKeene is about to graduate as an Attendant—women who are trained in combat and etiquette, though she wants nothing more than to head back to her home in Kentucky. But when she finds out about a dastardly plot that threatens everyone in Baltimore County, she discovers maybe the dead aren’t the ones to fear after all.
6. Thriller with Kindred by Octavia E. Butler
While technically more historical fiction with a fantastical twist, KINDRED features many thriller-y elements. And it was just so good that we had to put it on this list! While celebrating her twenty-sixth birthday with her husband, Dana, a modern black woman, time travels to the antebellum South to save a drowning young boy. But as Dana is continuously called back to the past to save the boy from life-threatening situations, the time she needs to stay in the past grows longer and longer until she is unsure whether it’s possible to go back to the present in one piece.