Teen Book Reviews (page 563)

FICTION
Released: May 1, 2009

"Due to its length and the frustration of waiting some 100 pages between the start and continuation of some story lines, only the most stubborn of readers will stay past the 37 dead cats to the tiresome, if very tidy, ending. (Historical fiction. 14 & up)"
With excruciating, mind-numbing detail and a lot of swear words, 17-year-old Karl chronicles the first six days of his senior year. Read full book review >
ARE U 4 REAL? by Sara Kadefors
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 1, 2009

"Predictable but addictive plotting, combined with Alex's and Kyra's trenchant, deeply conflicted inner monologues, will keep readers rooting for these two crazy kids to navigate the messy transition from online to real-life romance. (Fiction. YA)"
Alex and Kyla feel trapped in their respective lives—he as a socially outcast ballet dancer fulfilling his mother's dreams by proxy, she as a lonely, hard-partying Hollywood girl barely propping up her depressed mom—and both think they've found a true friend in an online chat room. Read full book review >

THE VAST FIELDS OF ORDINARY by Nick Burd
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 1, 2009

"One of the best in a new generation of LGBTQ novels, it can stand alongside Peter Cameron's and Brian Sloan's. (Fiction. YA)"
Trapped in a suburban wasteland the summer before his first year in college, closeted indie loser Dade Hamilton is stuck in the middle of his parents' disintegrating marriage and wastes his time pining after his girlfriend-ed hook-up-buddy Pablo. Read full book review >
PLAYING DEAD by Tim Bowler
FICTION
Released: May 1, 2009

"Much about Blade's present but little about his past is revealed, which may entice readers to pick up the sequel if they don't put this book down in frustration. (Fiction. YA)"
Fourteen-year-old Blade (aka Slicky) is a smart homeless kid who gets caught in many wrong places at a lot of wrong times. Read full book review >
YOUNG ADULT
Released: May 1, 2009

"The whimsical cartoon illustrations are a good complement to the breezy, conversational style. (Nonfiction. 12-16)"
Adolescent girls seeking a deeper understanding of the opposite sex will appreciate this appealing, entertaining guide full of useful facts and sound advice. Read full book review >

PEACE, LOVE, & BABY DUCKS by Lauren Myracle
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 1, 2009

"Myracle's spot-on portrayal of a teen stuck in the throes of defining herself based on what she is not rather than what she is allows plenty of room for Carly to muse, grow and change. (Fiction. 12 & up)"
Predictable territory is made richer by a large cast of multidimensional characters in this work of contemporary realism set in an affluent Atlanta community. Read full book review >
GHOSTS OF WAR by Ryan Smithson
HISTORY
Released: May 1, 2009

"For Smithson, the war is a source of personal enlightenment, and this memoir is a remarkable, deeply penetrating read that will compel teens to reflect on their own thoughts about duty, patriotism and sacrifice. (Memoir. YA)"
Ryan Smithson was a typical 16-year-old high-school student until 9/11. Read full book review >
THE WAY WE ROLL by Stephanie Perry Moore
FICTION
Released: May 1, 2009

"Although Moore provides a look into the closeted, elite world of African-American Greeks, the novel feels crowded with too many characters and too many subplots, with not enough of the rich history and legacy of these groups. (Fiction. 12 & up)"
The second book in the Beta Gamma Pi series features Malloy Murray, the daughter of the national president of the sorority. Read full book review >
THE PLAGUE by Joanne Dahme
FICTION
Released: May 1, 2009

"Despite the contrived ending that finds Nell a prisoner in the Tower of London, Dahme successfully blurs fact and fiction to capture the pervasive horror that infected life during the plague. (Historical fantasy. 12-15)"
An orphan becomes an innocent pawn in a dangerous political plot that carries her from London to Bordeaux while the Black Death cuts a swath through 14th-century Europe. Read full book review >
THE ETERNAL SMILE by Gene Luen Yang
Released: May 1, 2009

"Begging for multiple readings, this exceptionally clever examination of fantasy and perception is one to be pored over and ruminated upon. (Graphic fiction. YA)"
A rousing and thought-provoking exploration of fantasy versus reality from the much-lauded comics veterans Yang and Kim. Read full book review >
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 1, 2009

"Readers will have to keep looking for well-written, cutting-edge teen Christian fiction. (Mystery. YA)"
Backstage drama and murder in this series opener. Read full book review >
SHADOW BOXING by Sherie Posesorski
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 1, 2009

"Wholesome. (Fiction. 12-14)"
Ever since her mother died, 16-year-old Alice has been sleepwalking through life, locked in a cold war with her father, cutting herself to cope. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >