Library Column for June 26, 2019

@ Your Library

The library staff hope your summer reading is spectacular and that you are looking for more great books to read. Several years ago, young adult titles, books geared specifically for youth in the 13 -18 age range, took off in popularity. And while they are published for teens, there is nothing that says adults can’t enjoy them too and they are often quick reads. Here are some of the best of the young adult books that adults might enjoy.

Let’s start with local author Mary Casanova and her historical fiction series which so far includes Frozen and Ice Out. I know she is working on a third book in the series, so use the time until it comes out to catch up on the characters and events of a past that sometimes doesn’t seem so distant.

Another historical fiction that is fascinating is Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein. The book is set in World War II and starts with the crash of a British spy plane crashing in Nazi-occupied France. The pilot and passenger are best friends but only one has a shot at survival…

One of my favorite authors of young adult works is Neal Shusterman. And the book he wrote with his son is extraordinary. Challenger Deep was written to try and capture what the descent into mental illness was like for one teen. The book is powerful, moving and enlightening about mental illness.

Across the Universe by Beth Revis involves interplanetary space travel. Amy is 17 when she joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the spaceship Godspeed. She expects to awaken in 300 years on a new planet.  Fifty years before the ship’s scheduled landing Amy violently awakes from her frozen slumber because someone tried to kill her. She isn’t sure who to trust. She just knows she needs to unlock the secrets of the ship before someone tries to kill again.

Alternate histories can be a great introduction to real history as it makes us curious about what is real and what was alternate.  Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld is the first book in a World War I trilogy. East versus west in war and technology.  The east is focusing on steam and machinery while the west is focusing on genetic engineering. The book opens in 1914 as an Austrian Prince is on the run.

Books can provide the opportunity to learn about experiences and lives different than our own and help us understand and empathize with others. Being on the receiving end of intimidation is awful and when the intimidators are authority figures it is even harder. Angie Thomas explores the experiences of a young woman in the car during a shooting in Hate U Give.

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon, while being a new movie, started as a book and tells the story of a young couple and one day’s adventures as they meet and fall for each other while one of them faces deportation.

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