Teen Book Reviews (page 5)

AMINA by J.L. Powers
Released: July 1, 2015

"Readers don't always need another heroine—sometimes a young woman living an ordinary life in extraordinary circumstances will wilt stereotypes better than heroics. (map, author's note, timeline, glossary, further reading) (Fiction. 13-16)"
Amina Khalid is a sweet, amiable teenager—and a solid counterexample to Islamophobia and negative notions about Somalis. Read full book review >
THE JEWISH DOG by Asher Kravitz
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 2015

"A remarkable achievement. (Historical fiction. 14 & up)"
In 1930s Germany, an exceptionally intelligent dog is born into a Jewish family. Read full book review >

CROSSING INTO BROOKLYN by Mary Ann McGuigan
Released: July 1, 2015

"An ambitious rumination that fails on several fronts. (Fiction. 12-16)"
Morgan's world is rocked when she discovers that the grandfather whose passing she is grieving was not her biological grandfather; her mother's long-estranged father is in fact alive in Brooklyn. Read full book review >
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: July 1, 2015

"An excellent, informative tool for any kid interested in becoming the next Scorsese. (Nonfiction. 10-14)"
Budding filmmakers are given a crash course in the cinematic arts. Read full book review >
FOODPRINTS by Paula Ayer
Released: July 1, 2015

"Regardless of its off-putting look, this effort is worthy of a broad audience. (Nonfiction. 10-18)"
Will teenagers willingly read an entertaining and brightly illustrated book about food, or will this effort reach only those who are writing reports? Read full book review >

UNCERTAIN SOLDIER by Karen Bass
Released: July 1, 2015

"The story's complexity and the believably depicted historical setting help to compensate for this coming-of-age tale's unevenness. (Historical fiction. 11-18)"
Reluctant German soldier Erich, just 17 and part English—a fact he carefully conceals—has been incarcerated in a Canadian prisoner-of-war camp since recovering from injuries sustained when his ship sunk. Read full book review >
BETWEEN US AND THE MOON by Rebecca Maizel
Released: June 30, 2015

"A fine summer fling for a satisfying summer read. (Romance. 14-18)"
Can inner truth be found when the journey starts with a lie? Read full book review >
TOMMY by Karen Blumenthal
Released: June 30, 2015

"A gripping look at guns, gangsters, and finding the 'right balance between individual freedom and community safety.' (Nonfiction. 12-18)"
John T. Thompson created the submachine gun that bore his name but was distressed when the "impressive little killing machine" he intended for war became the deadly weapon of choice for Prohibition-era gangsters. Read full book review >
SHADOWSHAPER by Daniel José Older
Released: June 30, 2015

"Warm, strong, vernacular, dynamic—a must. (Urban fantasy. 14-18)"
When walking corpses—and worse—show up in the city, a teen discovers family secrets and ancestral powers. Read full book review >
THREE MORE WORDS by Ashley Rhodes-Courter
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 30, 2015

"Uneven but sometimes highly interesting, it serves as a window onto the foster-care system. (Memoir. 12 & up)"
This memoir serves as a sequel to the author's Three Little Words (2008), which chronicled her experiences as a foster child in Florida. Now, she writes of her experiences as a foster parent.Read full book review >
THE LEVELLER by Julia Durango
Released: June 23, 2015

"Smooth entertainment equally likely to appeal to both gamers and nongamers. (Science fiction. 13-17)"
Teens want to escape into virtual worlds, where they can remake themselves into gorgeous and heroic avatars; parents want their kids to pay more attention to homework and chores. This book is for both camps. Read full book review >
EMMY & OLIVER by Robin Benway
Released: June 23, 2015

"As a portrait of the emerging adolescent, it engages, even if it gives the effects of the kidnapping on its victim short shrift. (Fiction. 12-18)"
A girl loses her best friend when he's kidnapped by his father at 7 and must cope when he returns 10 years later. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Sabaa Tahir
August 4, 2015

Sabaa Tahir’s novel An Ember in the Ashes reveals a world inspired by ancient Rome and defined by brutality. Seventeen-year-old Laia has grown up with one rule for survival: Never challenge the Empire. But when Laia’s brother Darin is arrested for treason, she leaves behind everything she knows, risking her life to try and save him. She enlists help from the rebels whose extensive underground network may lead to Darin. Their help comes with a price, though. Laia must infiltrate the Empire’s greatest military academy as a spy. Elias is the Empire’s finest soldier—and its most unwilling one. Thrown together by chance and united by their hatred of the Empire, Laia and Elias will soon discover that their fates are intertwined—and that their choices may change the destiny of the entire Empire. We talk to An Ember in the Ashes author Sabaa Tahir this week on Kirkus TV. View video >