Alex As Well by Alyssa Brugman REVIEW

alexAlex As Well by Alyssa Brugman

 Available in Print.

Alex was born with a rare condition that makes her physically both a boy and a girl. When she was very young, her parents decided to raise her as a boy, but at fifteen she knows she’s a girl. She stops taking her hormone medicine and starts wearing girl clothes. Her mother freaks out (as usual) and her dad walks out.

Alex enrolls herself in a new school where no one knows the truth or that she was recently a boy. Her hopes for a clean beginning are dashed when the school asks for a birth certificate. It’s not her fault she was declared a boy at birth, but it is her burden to bear. Alex stops at the first barrister (aka lawyer) she sees to learn how she can change her birth certificate.

Even though Alex lives in constant fear of being discovered, she likes her new school. She meets a group of friends including the beautiful Amina (yes, Alex is crushing on her from their first meeting). She gets the opportunity to be a model and wear amazing clothes and make up. It is such a girly thing to do and Alex loves it.

Alex’s parents have never dealt with her condition in the best way for Alex, and this new decision has pushed them beyond their limits. Her mother (who we follow in her blog posts) is convinced it’s just a phase and Alex is too young to know what ‘he’ really wants. Her judgment is questionable at best. Alex’s father tries and is more accepting but still struggles with the change. Of course, guilt is weighing on them as well.

Alex has had a tough road and it’s never going to be as easy as it should be. Society has a difficult time dealing with things that do not mesh with the perceived norm. Alex is just another teen with more obstacles than most struggling to find her place in the world.

~Review by Will Smither, Indy PL Librarian and Teen Services Committee. You Know You Wanna Read It Blog.

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Novels in Verse to celebrate National Poetry Month

What is a novel in verse anyway? According to wikipedia, a novel in verse is

“a type of narrative poetry in which a novel-length narrative is told through the medium of poetry rather than prose. Either simple or complex stanzaic verse-forms may be used, but there will usually be a large cast, multiple voices, dialogue, narration, description, and action in a novelistic manner.”

Check out some of our novels in verse!

danceA time to dance by Padma Venkatraman.

Available in Print and eBook.

In India, a girl who excels at Bharata Natyam dance refuses to give up after losing a leg in an accident.

Read reviews and more on Goodreads.

 

 

 

stareTwo girls staring at the ceiling by Lucy Frank.

Available in Print.

In this novel in verse, two very different girls bond while hospitalized for Crohn’s disease.

Read reviews and more on Goodreads.

Follow Lucky Frank on Facebook and Twitter.

 

 

stayAnd we stay by Jenny Hubbard.

Available in Print.

Sent to an Amherst, Massachusetts, boarding school after her ex-boyfriend shoots himself, seventeen-year-old Emily expresses herself through poetry as she relives their relationship, copes with her guilt, and begins to heal.

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April is National Poetry Month

You can celebrate National Poetry Month by checking out some of these novels in verse at your Indy PL!

audacityAUDACITY by Melanie Crowder.

Available in Print.

“A historical fiction novel in verse detailing the life of Clara Lemlich and her struggle for women’s labor rights in the early 20th century in New York.”–
Provided by publisher.

Read reviews and more on Goodreads.

Follow Melanie Crowder on Facebook and Twitter.

 

capCapricious by Gabrielle Prendergast.

Available in Print.

“Ella’s grade-eleven year was a disaster (Audacious), but as summer approaches, things are looking up. She’s back together with her brooding boyfriend, Samir, although they both want to keep that a secret. She’s also best buddies with David and still not entirely sure about making him boyfriend number two. Though part of her wants to conform to high school norms, the temptation to be radical is just too great. Managing two secret boyfriends proves harder than Ella expected, especially when Samir and David face separate family crises, and Ella finds herself at the center of an emotional maelstrom. Someone will get hurt. Someone risks losing true love. Someone might finally learn that self-serving actions can have public consequences. And that someone is Ella.”–Amazon.

Read reviews and more on Goodreads.

Follow Gabrielle Prendergast on Facebook and Twitter.

rumbleRumble by Ellen Hopkins.

Available in Print, e-Book.

Eighteen-year-old Matt’s atheism is tested when, after a horrific accident of his own making that plunges him into a dark, quiet place, he hears a voice that calls everything he has ever disbelieved into question.

Read reviews and more on Goodreads.

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We Should Hang Out Sometime: Embarrassingly, a True Story by Josh Sundquist REVIEW

hangWe Should Hang Out Sometime: Embarrassingly, a True Story by Josh Sundquist

Available in Print and eBook format.

Have you ever thought about tracking down all your exes to find out the real reasons you broke up? If you have, why stop there? Why not ask all the ones you dated one time or kissed a few times or held hands with once in 6th grade? Josh Lindquist wanted to know why by the age of 25 he had never had a girlfriend, so he decided to investigate and yes, this is a true story. 

Before we delve into Josh’s quest, it is important to know that Josh had his leg amputated at age nine due to cancer. As much as he tries to not draw attention to it being an amputee definitely affects his behavior and psyche.

Josh contacted each significant girl from his past and analyzed their reasons for not wanting to take their relationship further. We get the background of each ‘relationship.’ Sarah is the first. During a game of Truth or Dare on a school bus, Sarah said she didn’t like Josh, but he found out later that she did. We learn how awkward Josh can be when trying to figure out if Sarah wants to be his girlfriend. Josh is clueless about girls which makes him a normal eighth grade boy. Of course when you are in the middle of your awkwardness, you don’t realize that you are a normal teenager. You only know that you are embarrassed and feel completely stupid.

Josh follows up with a hypothesis on the reasons the relationships ended. He then recounts what happened when he met each girl (who are now women) again. He calls this part the ‘investigation.’ Charts and graphs are included (although they are not really based on data).  

As a real life inspirational speaker, Josh tells his story with humor and purpose. I laughed out loud many times and sympathized with his difficulty trying to interact with girls. If you’ve ever been a teen interested in having a relationship, you will relate to something in this story. 

~Review by Will Smither, Indy PL Librarian and Teen Services Committee. You Know You Wanna Read It Blog.

Follow Josh Sundquist on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube,  and Instagram. Read reviews and more on GoodReads.

 

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Inherit Midnight by Kate Kae Myers REVIEW

midnightInherit Midnight by Kate Kae Myers

Available in Print and eBook format.

Eight people flying around the world to historic locations, solving riddles, tackling physical challenges – the latest reality show? No, it is Avery’s life, at least until she or one of her family members wins this contest.

After a nearly successful escape from her boarding school, Avery is returned to the mansion where she grew up under the watchful eye of her Grandmother VanDemere. For Avery, the mansion was like a prison – no sleepovers, no dating, no leaving the house except for school.

Grandmother is obsessed with family history and preserving the name VanDemere. Avery’s existence is a black mark on that heritage. Her father had an affair with the nanny and Avery was the result. After that her alcoholic father disappeared, so Avery grew up with only her grandmother and occasional visits from her snobby cousins who look down on her.

Grandmother Vandemere is not happy with her sons or grandchildren and decides the only way to find a worthy heir to the family fortune is to pit them against each other. If it means Avery doesn’t have to return to school, she will try her best at the competition. She faces backstabbing, cheating and uncles more knowledgeable in family history.

With the family lawyer’s attractive son at her side, Avery sets out to the seemingly impossible task of taking on the family she loathes. Avery is not prepared for the things she discovers about herself and her family along the way.  

~Review by Will Smither, Indy PL Librarian and Teen Services Committee. You Know You Wanna Read It Blog.

Check out Kate Kae Myers on Facebook, Goodreads, and  YouTube.

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