Thursday, December 18, 2014

YA Thursday

Books I'm looking forward to in early 2015:

Mapmaker by Mark Bomback and Galaxy Craze (Soho Teen hardcover, 15 April 2015).

When Tanya Barrett takes an internship at MapOut, she expects emotional landmines. Her father co-founded the digital mapping company, and he died for it—on a cartographic expedition he didn’t even need to take.

Her father’s business partner and his son, Connor, welcome her with open arms. Connor may be the only person who can make Tanya feel normal these days. 
But Tanya and Connor stumble onto a deadly secret, and the next day Connor disappears.

It’s soon clear that people at MapOut are willing to kill for what they discovered. Alone again—and on the run—Tanya must rely on her wits to find out what happened to him. In the world MapOut envisions, no one stays lost for long.

Bet Your Life: A Jess Tenant mystery by Jane Casey (St. Martin's Griffin hardcover, 3 February 2015).

Jess Tennant has now been living in a tiny town on the English seaside for three months, and is just beginning to relax and think of it as home after the traumatic events of last summer. 

But in the small hours of Halloween night, a teenage boy is left for dead by the side of the road. Seb Dawson has a serious head injury and may not survive. Jess might not have liked Seb much, but surely he didn’t deserve this. The police don’t seem to be taking the attack very seriously, but Jess can’t just let it go, and she takes matters into her own hands.

As she investigates, Jess discovers that Seb was involved in some very dangerous games. A secret predator around girls, he would do whatever it took to abuse them, from lying and blackmail to spiking drinks. Could a group of vengeful victims be behind his attack? Or is there someone else with a grudge against Seb, who will stop at nothing to silence him?

Vivian Apple at the End of the World by Katie Coyle (HMH Books for Young Readers hardcover, 6 January 2015).

Seventeen-year-old Vivian Apple never believed in the evangelical Church of America, unlike her recently devout parents. But when Vivian returns home the night after the supposed "Rapture," all that’s left of her parents are two holes in the roof. Suddenly, she doesn't know who or what to believe.

With her best friend Harp and a mysterious ally, Peter, Vivian embarks on a desperate cross-country roadtrip through a paranoid and panic-stricken America to find answers. 

Because at the end of the world, Vivan Apple isn't looking for a savior. She's looking for the truth.
ETA:  My review of this book was published in School Library Journal, Oct 1, 2014; Vol. 60, No. 10, p. 117.

Boys Don't Knit by T.S. Easton (Feiwel & Friends hardcover, 24 March 2015).

After an incident regarding a crossing guard and a bottle of Martini & Rossi (and his friends), 17-year-old worrier Ben Fletcher must develop his sense of social alignment, take up a hobby, and do some community service to avoid any further probation.

He takes a knitting class (it was that or his father’s mechanic class) with the impression that it’s taught by the hot teacher all the boys like. Turns out, it’s not. Perfect. 

Regardless, he sticks with it and comes to discover he’s a natural knitter, maybe even great. It also helps ease his anxiety and worrying. The only challenge now is to keep it hidden from his friends, his crush, and his soccer-obsessed father. What a tangled web Ben has weaved . . . or knitted.

Dream a Little Dream by Kristen Gier and Anthea Bell (Henry Holt & Co. hardcover, 14 April 2015).

Mysterious doors with lizard-head knobs. Talking stone statues. A crazy girl with a hatchet. Yes, Liv’s dreams have been pretty weird lately. Especially the one where she’s in a graveyard at night, watching four boys conduct dark magic rituals. 

The strangest part is that Liv recognizes the boys in her dream. They’re classmates from her new school in London, the school where she’s starting over because her mom has moved them to a new country (again). 

But what's really scaring Liv is that the dream boys seem to know things about her in real life, things they couldn't possibly know—unless they actually are in her dreams?  
Luckily, Liv never could resist a good mystery, and all four of those boys are pretty cute....

All the Rage by Courtney Summers (St. Martin's Griffin hardcover, 14 April 2015).

The sheriff’s son, Kellan Turner, is not the golden boy everyone thinks he is, and Romy Grey knows that for a fact. Because no one wants to believe a girl from the wrong side of town, the truth about him has cost her everything—friends, family, and her community. 

Branded a liar and bullied relentlessly by a group of kids she used to hang out with, Romy’s only refuge is the diner where she works outside of town. No one knows her name or her past there; she can finally be anonymous. 

But when a girl with ties to both Romy and Kellan goes missing after a party, and news of him assaulting another girl in a town close by gets out, Romy must decide whether she wants to fight or carry the burden of knowing more girls could get hurt if she doesn’t speak up. Nobody believed her the first time—and they certainly won’t now—but the cost of her silence might be more than she can bear.  

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