A sassy yet sweet girl-power tale that transcends time.

GIMME EVERYTHING YOU GOT

A crush leads to self-discovery when a teen girl joins the soccer team.

Seventeen-year-old Susan Klintock is starting junior year without a boyfriend or goals…until she sees Bobby McMann, a new, young faculty member who looks great in shorts. But Bobby wants to do more than teach algebra. It’s 1979, and in the wake of Title IX, he’s intent on starting the school’s first all-girl soccer team. After most of the girls realize they’ll have to do more than just ogle Bobby, only Susan, her best friend, and a handful of wannabe players are left to face copious challenges with no real games on the horizon. Soon, Susan strikes up a friendship with Joe, a punk rock–loving former goalie at nearby Catholic St. Mark’s high school, who offers to help Susan become the player she didn’t know she wanted to be. When Susan challenges the St. Mark’s boys to a match, she finds herself reckoning with her own strength, her skills as a newly minted team captain, and her feelings for both Bobby and Joe. Susan is a flawed and sympathetic heroine, and her quest for fulfillment is packed with humor and heart. The fresh exploration of identity, first love, and the impact of Title IX make this novel broadly appealing. Susan and her family and friends are assumed white, but the author signals background diversity through the surnames of a few minor characters.

A sassy yet sweet girl-power tale that transcends time. (Romantic comedy. 14-18)

Pub Date: July 14, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-06-293725-4

Page Count: 400

Publisher: Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 2, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2020

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Many teen novels touch on similar themes, but few do it so memorably.

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  • New York Times Bestseller

ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES

Two struggling teens develop an unlikely relationship in a moving exploration of grief, suicide and young love.

Violet, a writer and member of the popular crowd, has withdrawn from her friends and from school activities since her sister died in a car accident nine months earlier. Finch, known to his classmates as "Theodore Freak," is famously impulsive and eccentric. Following their meeting in the school bell tower, Finch makes it his mission to re-engage Violet with the world, partially through a school project that sends them to offbeat Indiana landmarks and partially through simple persistence. (Violet and Finch live, fortunately for all involved, in the sort of romantic universe where his throwing rocks at her window in the middle of the night comes off more charming than stalker-esque.) The teens alternate narration chapter by chapter, each in a unique and well-realized voice. Finch's self-destructive streak and suicidal impulses are never far from the surface, and the chapters he narrates are interspersed with facts about suicide methods and quotations from Virginia Woolf and poet Cesare Pavese. When the story inevitably turns tragic, a cast of carefully drawn side characters brings to life both the pain of loss and the possibility of moving forward, though some notes of hope are more believable than others.

Many teen novels touch on similar themes, but few do it so memorably. (Fiction. 14 & up)

Pub Date: Jan. 6, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-385-75588-7

Page Count: 400

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: Oct. 1, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2014

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Will cast a spell on romance fans.

SERPENT & DOVE

From the Serpent & Dove series , Vol. 1

A stealth witch and a devout witch hunter are forced to marry.

In this French-flavored fantasy world, witches are hunted down by the Church’s Chasseurs and burned at the stake; they retaliate against this genocidal crusade through vicious terrorist attacks. Thief Louise le Blanc wants none of that—she’s left her witch life behind. But Lou ends up on Chasseur captain Reid Diggory’s radar when a heist goes bad; his attempt to catch her lands them in a situation so compromising that the archbishop suggests marriage to save face. Lou’s initial priority is self-protection—wanting to avoid both fallout from the heist and a dangerous figure from her past—and she’s fine with using Reid. The slow-burn, opposites-attract romance between crass, irreverent Lou and prim and proper Reid gets very hot and sexy once it ignites. Lou sees firsthand the damages some witches do to innocents, has her presumptions about individual Chasseurs challenged, and also sees up close the horrors Chasseurs perpetrate. Despite occasional pacing hiccups and an easily guessed twist, the secondary characters will charm readers, and the story picks up when Lou’s past dangerously catches up to her, revealing the true stakes. Though at heart a romance, rich second-tier characters round out the shades-of-gray, morality-and-empathy themes. Witches, Chasseurs, and some secondary characters come in all colors; the leads appear white. The ending screams sequel.

Will cast a spell on romance fans. (Fantasy. 15-adult)

Pub Date: Sept. 3, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-06-287802-1

Page Count: 528

Publisher: HarperTeen

Review Posted Online: June 18, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2019

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