Thursday, August 4, 2016

Recently Added YA

The Crown's Game by Evelyn Skye
Two magicians compete to become the Imperial Enchanter to the Tsar of Russia. To win is to rise to great power as the Tsar's most trusted adviser. To lose, means certain death.

If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan
In Iran, Sahar and Nasrin's secret love for one another is dangerous. When Nasrin's parents arrange her marriage, Sahar contemplates a drastic change to continue their relationship.

Love Me Never by Sara Wolf
Isis Blake is determined not to fall in love. Jack Hunter has no interest in high school girls. Then Isis punches Hunter in the face, and everything changes.

Meant to Be by Lauren Morrill
It's spring break, and Julia is dismayed to be partnered with her nemesis Jason on a school trip to London. When she begins getting romantic texts from an unknown number after a wild party, Jason agrees to help her discover the identity of the sender... If she'll agree to break a few of her rules.

Peas and Carrots by Tanita S. Davis
Dess, who is white, is placed in foster care with a black family while her mother is in prison.

Teen Idol by Meg Cabot 
Jenny, who runs an anonymous advice column for her school newspaper, excels at keeping secrets. So much so that when Hollywood star Luke Striker visits her town to research an upcoming role, she is assigned to keep his identity under wraps. 

The Problem With Forever by Jennifer L. Armentrout
After a traumatic past and years of homeschooling, Mallory is facing the prospect of spending her senior year in public school. She never imagined that she would run into Rider Stark, the boy who protected her as a child on her very first day of classes.

Ruined by Amy Tintera
Emelina Flores has witnessed the destruction of her home, the murders of her parents, and the kidnapping of her sister. She is powerless, but that won't stop her from traveling to an enemy kingdom, infiltrating their army, and finding her sister.

A School for Unusual Girls by Kathleen Baldwin
1814.Banished to Stranje House to be transformed into a proper young lady, Georgiana Fitzwilliam thinks only of escape, until she begins working on a scientific project with Lord Sebastian Wyatt.

Thanks for the Trouble by Tommy Wallach
Parker has not spoken for five years. He spends his time hanging out in hotels, people watching and writing. Then he meets Zelda Toth, who has silver hair and claims to be centuries old, although she looks like she's in her teens.

The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson
Scandal uproots the carefully laid plans of a politician's daughter. Hello living with dad, walking dogs, and the very unexpected Clark.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Harry Potter RETURNS!

Friends, housemates, wizards, and muggles, our beloved Harry is back! Excitement does not even begin to express my fangirl outbursts right now. I couldn't be happier. Let's get to it! 

A few clarifications before we begin:

The book originates from a play which has premiered in England. It was written by Jack Thorne and John Tiffany. The book, which will be available for checkout, is the official script from the play. For more information on the play, cast, and tickets visit Pottermore's link.

 What is in store for Harry and his family? Here is a quote from Pottermore :

"It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn't much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband, and a father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places."

To celebrate the return of our favorite cast of characters, here are some reasons why your fellow librarians love Harry.

Brittney: For me, Harry Potter has always been a reminder that there is light and magic in the world, if we only remember to be aware and to look for it. It's a timeless story that's a testament to bravery, empathy, and standing up for what's right. Although many years have passed since the first time I checked out Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone from the library, the characters and their stories have never left me, just as they've never left all of Harry's other fans. For me, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is a way to check in with the characters I love, to see how their stories have continued when we readers weren't along for the ride. I expect it to be different from the books I love, but I'm excited about that difference, too. There's no way to go back to Hogwarts and have it be exactly the same, but there is both a comfort and excitement in The Cursed Child. Excitement because our curiosity will be satisfied; and comfort because Harry Potter still goes on, after all this time. Always.

Jessica: The first time I read this series was the closest I will ever come to discovering that magic exists. For me and many other fans, this is the milestone series where I discovered the enchantment that lives inside of books. I learned many things from this series: the power of friendship, it's okay to grieve loss, bravery lives in all of us, family is defined by love not blood, empathy is one of the most important gifts humans possess, and to embrace what makes me, me. So, I now wait with anticipation for this next chapter in Harry's life. An adult with a family of his own, Hogwarts is a memory and Harry has a different story to tell. The invitation is open for all to join him on an adventure. Recently, I reread the books with a friend in preparation for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. From the moment I opened the book, I was filled with the same excitement I had over a decade ago. Harry was still there with Hermione, Ron, and Neville waiting for me to join them, once again.

"After all this time?""Always."

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children comes to theaters September 30th. Director, Tim Burton, and writer, Ransom Riggs, bring the YA trilogy to life with beautiful cinematography and outstanding casting. View the trailer here.

But, have you read the books?
This young adult series is part historical fiction, part fantasy and part science fiction. The trilogy follows Jacob Portman, a 16 year old from Florida. He believes the tales his grandfather has shared with him, over the years might, actually, be true. So begins Jacob's quest to find answers, which leads him to an island located in Wales. Jacob begins exploring the island and soon discovers a home crumbling in ruin. But it's what Jacob finds inside that leads him on an adventure he will never forget. Continue reading with, Hollow City, followed by, Library of Souls. Check out graphic novel versions here!

When the book first hit the shelves in 2011, I was intrigued by the cover. It had this other-worldly/vintage look to it, which I found quite appealing. At this point, my curiosity was piqued. Then my friend asks, "You know how he wrote the book right?" When I answered, "No," he gave me a reason to purchase the book right then and there.

Over the years, Ransom Riggs had been collecting vintage snapshots he found at flea markets. He was drawn to the lost stories behind the pictures. At the time, Riggs was doing some writing for Quirk Books and was approached about writing his own novel. Shortly after, the idea for Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children was born. Through Jacob Portman's story, Riggs gave these pictures a new life. A story for everyone, young and old, to enjoy.

From someone who has read the books, this unique writing style adds a special layer to the reading experience. It pairs so well with the story and gives the reader a visual reference to these extraordinary characters. Riggs created a personal story through these pictures. By sharing them with the reader, he invites you to take a journey back into time. 

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Review: The Archived by Victoria Schwab

Imagine a place where the dead rest on shelves like books.

Each body has a story to tell, a life seen in pictures only Librarians can read. The dead are called Histories, and the vast realm in which they rest is the Archive.

Like a lot of teenagers, sixteen-year-old Mackenzie, the protagonist of Victoria Schwab's The Archived, has a job. Unlike most teenagers, her job is rounding up the Histories of the deceased and sending them back to the Archive where they belong. She inherited the position from her grandfather, and has spent the past four years patrolling a shadowy realm of corridors called the Narrows, battling the dead who have woken up and sending them back before they escape into the world of the living and cause harm.

 In the aftermath of her little brother's tragic death, Mackenzie's parents decide to relocate to give the family a fresh start. They rent an apartment in an old building called the Coronado, with the intention of renovating the long-disused coffee shop in the lobby. The Coronado is where she meets Wesley Ayers, another Keeper.
 For the first time since her grandfather's death, Mackenzie has someone to talk to about the Archive. Wesley understands her double life and becomes a friend and ally.

But before Mackenzie has a chance to settle in, the activity in the Narrows becomes strange. The Histories assigned to her are older and more violent. And a shadowy figure appears to pose a greater threat than Mackenzie has encountered before.

I read this book because I like novels with library settings, but there is much to enjoy here beyond the Archive. After the first half of the novel--where much of the initial world building takes place--elements of mystery drive the plot toward the conclusion, and as a reader I was eager to see where the book was going. Schwab strikes a delicate balance between plot and character, neither taking a backseat to the other, and each shining throughout. Her characters possess flaws that help complicate and propel the plot, and they behave in ways that are occasionally frustrating but entirely realistic within the context of the book.

Mackenzie's story continues in The Unbound. The sequel adds new characters and settings while taking the reader deeper into the established world of the Archive and maintaining the eerie atmosphere that makes the first book so appealing.

This series is perfect for fans of urban fantasy featuring realistic settings with a darkly magical twist. If you've ever looked at a door, wondered where it led, and wished that it opened into another world, you will love The Archived.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

New 2016 Titles for YA

Here are a few of this year's most anticipated books in YA Fiction. There were quite a few series on the list, including a surprise from Rowling with the 8th installment in the Harry Potter series. Click the link for the Complete Goodreads YA 2016 List

Unfamiliar with Goodreads? It's a bookworm's dream come true. You can keep track of what you are reading, look for other books to read, and get recommendations from friends. You can rate books and/or write a review as you finish titles.The best part is connecting with other readers around the globe. There are thousands of book clubs to join (including Emma Watson's, Our Shared Shelf), which opens the door for great discussions. To set up an account, click here
All synopses in this review can be read and viewed on

Glass Sword (Red Queen #2) 

By Victoria Aveyard

Mare Barrow’s blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control. The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors. But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat. Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal harden her forever?

The electrifying next installment in the Red Queen series escalates the struggle between the growing rebel army and the blood-segregated world they’ve always known—and pits Mare against the darkness that has grown in her soul.

Morning Star (Red Rising #3) 

By Pierce Brown

Darrow would have lived in peace, but his enemies brought him war. The Gold overlords demanded his obedience, hanged his wife, and enslaved his people. But Darrow is determined to fight back. Risking everything to transform himself and breach Gold society, Darrow has battled to survive the cutthroat rivalries that breed Society's mightiest warriors, climbed the ranks, and waited patiently to unleash the revolution that will tear the hierarchy apart from within.

Finally, the time has come.

But devotion to honor and hunger for vengeance run deep on both sides. Darrow and his comrades-in-arms face powerful enemies without scruple or mercy. Among them are some Darrow once considered friends. To win, Darrow will need to inspire those shackled in darkness to break their chains, unmake the world their cruel masters have built, and claim a destiny too long denied - and too glorious to surrender. Start the series with Red Rising.

Stars Above (The Lunar Chronicles) 

By Marissa Meyer

The enchantment continues....

The universe of the Lunar Chronicles holds stories—and secrets—that are wondrous, vicious, and romantic. How did Cinder first arrive in New Beijing? How did the brooding soldier Wolf transform from young man to killer? When did Princess Winter and the palace guard Jacin realize their destinies?

With nine stories—five of which have never before been published—and an exclusive never-before-seen excerpt from Marissa Meyer’s upcoming novel, Heartless, about the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland, Stars Above is essential for fans of the bestselling and beloved Lunar Chronicles.

Lady Midnight (The Dark Artifices #1

By Cassandra Clare

MARCH 2016

The Shadowhunters of Los Angeles star in the first novel in Cassandra Clare’s newest series, The Dark Artifices, a sequel to the internationally bestselling Mortal Instruments series. Lady Midnight is a Shadowhunters novel.

It’s been five years since the events of City of Heavenly Fire that brought the Shadowhunters to the brink of oblivion. Emma Carstairs is no longer a child in mourning, but a young woman bent on discovering what killed her parents and avenging her losses.

Together with her parabatai Julian Blackthorn, Emma must learn to trust her head and her heart as she investigates a demonic plot that stretches across Los Angeles, from the Sunset Strip to the enchanted sea that pounds the beaches of Santa Monica. If only her heart didn’t lead her in treacherous directions…

Making things even more complicated, Julian’s brother Mark—who was captured by the faeries five years ago—has been returned as a bargaining chip. The faeries are desperate to find out who is murdering their kind—and they need the Shadowhunters’ help to do it. But time works differently in faerie, so Mark has barely aged and doesn’t recognize his family. Can he ever truly return to them? Will the faeries really allow it? Glitz, glamours, and Shadowhunters abound in this heartrending opening to Cassandra Clare’s Dark Artifices series.

A Study In Charlotte (Charlotte Holmes #1) 

By Brittany Cavallaro

MARCH 2016
The last thing Jamie Watson wants is a rugby scholarship to Sherringford, a Connecticut prep school just an hour away from his estranged father. But that’s not the only complication: Sherringford is also home to Charlotte Holmes, the famous detective’s great-great-great-granddaughter, who has inherited not only Sherlock’s genius but also his volatile temperament. From everything Jamie has heard about Charlotte, it seems safer to admire her from afar.

From the moment they meet, there’s a tense energy between them, and they seem more destined to be rivals than anything else. But when a Sherringford student dies under suspicious circumstances, ripped straight from the most terrifying of the Sherlock Holmes stories, Jamie can no longer afford to keep his distance. Jamie and Charlotte are being framed for murder, and only Charlotte can clear their names. But danger is mounting and nowhere is safe—and the only people they can trust are each other.

Yellow Brick War (Dorothy Must Die #3) 

By Danielle Paige

MARCH 2016
In this dark, action-packed third book in the New York Times bestselling Dorothy Must Die series, Amy Gumm—the new girl from Kansas—must do everything in her power to save Kansas, kill Dorothy, and make Oz a free land once more.

Amy Gumm’s mission to take down Dorothy Gale is not going according to plan. Dorothy has found a way to bridge the worlds of Oz and Kansas, and if the power-hungry dictator of Oz has her way, Kansas will be destroyed forever. Now, Amy has to team up with the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked to save her home, restore the balance between the magic and non-magic worlds, maybe get the guy—and kill that not-so-sweet Kansas farm girl once and for all.

In the third installment of the New York Times bestselling Dorothy Must Die series, Danielle Paige’s twisted versions of beloved Oz characters are back, including the biggest, baddest, most famous of all: the Wicked Witch of the West.

Welcome to the other side of the rainbow. Here there’s danger around every corner, and magic shoes won’t be able to save you. Star the series with Dorothy Must Die here.

The Raven King (Raven Cycle #4) 

By Maggie Steifvater

APRIL 2016

The fourth and final installment in the spellbinding series from the irrepressible, #1 New York Times bestselling author Maggie Stiefvater.

All her life, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love's death. She doesn't believe in true love and never thought this would be a problem, but as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she's not so sure anymore.

In a starred review for Blue Lily, Lily BlueKirkus Reviews declared: "Expect this truly one-of-a-kind series to come to a thundering close."
Start the series with Raven Boys here.

The Rose and The Dagger 

(The Wrath and and the Dawn #2) 

By Renee Ahdieh

APRIL 2016
The much anticipated sequel to the breathtaking The Wrath and the Dawn, lauded by Publishers Weekly as "a potent page-turner of intrigue and romance."

I am surrounded on all sides by a desert. A guest, in a prison of sand and sun. My family is here. And I do not know whom I can trust.

In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad has been torn from the love of her husband Khalid, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once believed him a monster, but his secrets revealed a man tormented by guilt and a powerful curse—one that might keep them apart forever. Reunited with her family, who have taken refuge with enemies of Khalid, and Tariq, her childhood sweetheart, she should be happy. But Tariq now commands forces set on destroying Khalid's empire. Shahrzad is almost a prisoner caught between loyalties to people she loves. But she refuses to be a pawn and devises a plan.

While her father, Jahandar, continues to play with magical forces he doesn't yet understand, Shahrzad tries to uncover powers that may lie dormant within her. With the help of a tattered old carpet and a tempestuous but sage young man, Shahrzad will attempt to break the curse and reunite with her one true love. Start the series with The Wrath and the Dawn, here.

The Crown (The Selection #5) 

By Kiera Cass

MAY 2016

Kiera Cass’s bestselling Selection series has enchanted readers from the very first page. Now the end of the journey is here, in a wonderfully romantic series finale that will sweep you off your feet.

Twenty years have passed since the events of The One, and America and Maxon’s daughter is the first princess to hold a Selection of her own. Princess Eadlyn didn’t think she would find a real partner among the Selection’s thirty-five suitors, let alone true love. But sometimes the heart has a way of surprising you... and now Eadlyn must make a choice that feels more difficult—and more important—than she ever expected.

The Selection series has sold more than 3 million copies and captured the hearts of fans around the world. This swoon-worthy final installment is the happily ever after they’ve all been waiting for.
Start reading this series with The Selection, here.

The Last Star (The 5th Wave #3) 

By Rick Yancey

MAY 2016

We’re here, then we’re gone, and that was true before they came. That’s always been true. The Others didn’t invent death; they just perfected it. Gave death a face to put back in our face, because they knew that was the only way to crush us. It won’t end on any continent or ocean, no mountain or plain, jungle or desert. It will end where it began, where it had been from the beginning, on the battlefield of the last beating human heart.

Master storyteller Rick Yancey invokes triumph, loss, and unrelenting action as the fate of the planet is decided in the conclusion to this epic series. Start reading this series with The 5th Wave, here.

Harry Potter and The Cursed Child 

(Harry Potter #8) 

By J.K. Rowling

JULY 2016
Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, a new play by Jack Thorne, is the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. It will receive its world premiere in London’s West End on 30th July 2016 

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband, and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes darkness comes from unexpected places.

Crooked Kingdom (Six of Crows #2) 

By Leigh Bardugo

Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn't think they'd survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they're right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and left crippled by the kidnapping of a valuable team member, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz's cunning and test the team's fragile loyalties. A war will be waged on the city's dark and twisting streets―a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of magic in the Grisha world. Start reading this series with Six of Crows, here.


By Marissa Meyer


Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland, and a favorite of the yet-unmarried King of Hearts, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, all she wants is to open a shop with her best friend and supply the Kingdom of Hearts with delectable pastries and confections. But according to her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for the young woman who could be the next Queen.

At a royal ball where Cath is expected to receive the king's marriage proposal, she meets Jest, the handsome and mysterious court joker. For the first time, she feels the pull of true attraction. At the risk of offending the King and infuriating her parents, she and Jest enter into an intense, secret courtship.

Cath is determined to define her own destiny and fall in love on her terms. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Get Away @ Your Library!

The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) was created in an effort to help libraries build capacity by serving, engaging and empowering teen readers. Libraries are important to any child passionate about reading, and  YALSA helps to expand and nurture that passion. Teen Read Week was started as a national adolescent initiative in 1998. It focuses on keeping teens active readers and library users. This year's Teen Read Week theme is Get Away @ Your Library. The theme encourages teens to explore new genres such as fantasy, travelogues, science fiction, and many more. There are so many great books out there filled with adventure. Cold weather is just around the corner, which makes it the perfect time of year to go on a staycation with a book. Here are some books worth checking out to celebrate!

Take a road trip with

Paper Towns by John GreenOne month before graduating from Central Florida high school, Quentin "Q" Jacobsen basks in the predictable boringness of his life. Until the beautiful and exciting Margo Roth Spiegelman, Q's neighbor and classmate, takes him on a midnight adventure. The next day she disappears. Q and his friends pile in his car in search of Margot and where she has gone.

Going Bovine by Libba Bray- In an attempt to find a cure after being diagnosed with Creutzfeldt-Jakob's (aka mad cow) disease, Cameron Smith, a disaffected sixteen-year-old boy, sets off on a  road trip with a death-obsessed video-gaming dwarf he meets in the hospital.

Get lost in the past with

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta SepetysOne night 15-year-old Lina, her mother and young brother are hauled from their home by Soviet guards, thrown into cattle cars, and sent away. They are being deported to Siberia. An unimaginable and harrowing journey has begun. Lina doesn't know if she'll ever see her father or her friends again. But she refuses to give up hope.

The Book Thief by Markus ZusakTrying to make sense of the horrors of World War II, Death relates the story of Liesel--a young German girl whose book-stealing and story-telling talents help sustain her family and the Jewish man they are hiding, as well as their neighbors.

Take a voyage with

Graceling by Kristin Cashore - In a world where some people are born with extreme and often-feared skills called Graces, Katsa struggles for redemption from her own horrifying Grace, the Grace of killing. She then teams up with another young fighter to save their land from a corrupt king.

The Boy Who Could See Demons by Carolyn Jess-CookeDr. Anya Molokova is called in to work at MacNeice House, an adolescent mental health treatment center. There she is told to observe and assess Alex Connolly, a keenly intelligent sensitive ten-year-old coping with his mother's latest suicide attempt. Alex is in need of serious counseling: he has been harming himself and others, often during blackouts. At the root of his destructive behavior, Alex claims, is his imaginary "friend" Ruen, a cunning demon who urges Alex to bend to his often violent will. But Anya has seen this kind of behavior before--with her own daughter, Poppy, who suffered from early-onset schizophrenia. Determined to help Alex out of his darkness, Anya begins to treat the child. But soon strange and alarming coincidences compel Anya to wonder: is Alex's condition a cruel trick of the mind? Or is Ruen not so make-believe after all? The reality, it turns out, is more terrifying than anything she has ever encountered.

Fall in love with

Just One Day by Gayle FormanWhen sheltered American good girl Allyson first encounters laid-back Dutch actor Willem at an underground performance of Twelfth Night, there's an undeniable spark. So when fate brings them together a second time, Allyson takes an uncharacteristic leap, changes course, and follows Willem to Paris. After just one day together, the spark bursts into a flame. However, Allyson wakes up shocked to discover that Willem is gone.

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell - A ghost story, a love story, a mystery, and a melodrama. Simon Snow just wants to relax and savor his last year at the Watford School of Magicks, but no one will let him. His girlfriend broke up with him, his best friend is a pest, and his mentor keeps trying to hide him away in the mountains where maybe he’ll be safe. Simon can’t even enjoy the fact that his roommate and longtime nemesis is missing, because he can’t stop worrying about the evil git. Plus there are ghosts. And vampires. And actual evil things trying to shut Simon down. When you’re the most powerful magician the world has ever known, you never get to relax and savor anything.

Go out of this world with

The House of Scorpion by Nancy Farmer - Matteo Alacran was not born; he was harvested with the DNA from El Patron, lord of a country called Opium. Can a boy who was bred to guarantee another’s survival find his own purpose in life? And can he ever be free?

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick NessPrentisstown isn't like other towns. Everyone can hear everyone else's thoughts in an overwhelming, never-ending stream of Noise. Just a month away from the birthday that will make him a man, Todd and his dog, Manchee, stumble upon an area of complete silence. They find that in a town where privacy is impossible, secrets have been hidden and that's only the beginning.

Travel internationally with

Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi - Originally published to wide critical acclaim in France, where it elicited comparisons to Art Spiegelman's Maus, Persepolis is Marjane Satrapi's wise, funny, and heartbreaking memoir of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. In powerful black-and-white comic strip images, Satrapi tells the story of her life in Tehran from ages six to fourteen, years that saw the overthrow of the Shah's regime, the triumph of the Islamic Revolution, and the devastating effects of war with Iraq. The intelligent and outspoken only child of committed Marxists and the great-granddaughter of one of Iran's last emperors, Marjane bears witness to a childhood uniquely entwined with the history of her country.

Inkheart by Corneila FunkeTwelve-year-old Meggie learns that her father, who repairs and binds books for a living, can "read" fictional characters to life when one of those characters abducts them and tries to force him into service.