Tag Archives: high school

YA Book Review- ManicPixieDreamGirl by Tom Leveen

Everyone has a first love. For Ty Darcy, his first love is not the same girl as his first girlfriend. Ever since he lays his eyes on Becky Webb freshman year, he is hopelessly devoted to her. He loves her unconditionally, despite the fact that he has a wonderful girlfriend named Sydney, or that he hears awful rumors about Becky, or that he’s barely ever spoken to her. His friends think he’s an idiot, writing story after story about all of the scenarios where he imagines he and Becky will finally be together. His wise older sister also tries to tell him he’s making a mistake, pining after a mysterious girl with a bad reputation when he has perfect Sydney already. Perhaps it’s the stubbornness of a teenaged boy, or maybe the idyllic image of Becky he has conjured, but either way Ty is not letting go of his dream girl- even when he starts to see the awful home life that seems to be the driving force behind all of her rumored bad behavior. Will he ever get the girl?

For those readers who don’t mind their romances a little unresolved, this book seems to capture the essence of navigating around your first heart’s desire. Leveen has created a really believable character in Ty, who is a good balance of flawed and sensitive. Hand this to anyone who likes love stories but doesn’t want anything too mushy.



YA Book Review- Shut Out by Kody Keplinger

Today we have another review from our guest reviewer Sofia!

“SHUT OUT is a romantic comedy by Kody Keplinger and takes place in an average American town. Lissa Daniels is the girlfriend of the quarterback for Hamilton High’s football team. Ever since Lissa’s older brother Logan attended that high school a few years ago, there have been rivalries, not between schools but between their own football and soccer team, for no apparent reason. Lissa can’t take the violence between the teams any longer, especially when Randy seems to care about fights with the soccer team more than her. Things kept getting worse when Randy’s car kept on getting egged while they were making out in it- she also hated hearing him talk about the rock that the soccer goalie threw at him, and hearing about a soccer player who is in the hospital with a torn ACL from being chased in the woods at night by football players. Lissa thinks the only way to end it once and for all is to go on a hookup strike. After Lissa gets the girlfriends of players from both teams together, they vow to not be physically intimate with their boyfriends. They have sleepovers talking about what their boyfriends have been doing to bribe them so far. Little did Lissa know that the strike will be the cause for her boyfriend to cheat on her, resulting in a breakup. Now, Cash Sterling, a hot soccer playing classmate, coworker of hers at the library, and an old summer crush, is the leader of the boys who try to do everything to make the girls break their vows. They go as far as to crash the girls’ sleepover party by stripping in the backyard, jumping into the pool and inviting the girls in, and getting one of the players to play his guitar and sing to his girlfriend while all of the other boys sing the chorus. This never works, so now Lissa has a new plan to get back at them by going to Cash’s house, making him kiss her and then through her seductive ways make him end the battle. That does not work out exactly as planed…. Lissa went too far- is it ever going to end?”

shut out

YA Book Review- Bubble World by Carol Snow

On the beautiful island of Agalinas, Freesia’s life is perfect. She has the perfect family, perfect friends, and the perfect wardrobe. The weather is always sunny and warm, her classes always have yummy snacks, and there’s always a party to go to and a store to shop in. That is, until the blackouts start happening and she wakes up in a dark room with plastic walls. When she is safe in Agalinas, Freesia, doesn’t like to think about things too hard. So when her perfect little world turns out to be not-so-perfect, she’s got to learn quickly how to navigate the real life she has going on just outside her bubble.

This story has a pretty original plot, which makes it stand out from typical the-world-is-not-what-you-think-it-is books. The author does a great job of making Freesia a relatable character, even though her life in Agalinas has her acting pretty shallow. This book is good for fans of realistic fiction who also enjoy a little sci-fi thrown in.

bubble world

YA Book Review- Speechless by Hannah Harrington

High school gossip is vicious, and no one knows that better than Chelsea Knot. One minute she is the sidekick to the most popular girl in school, and the next she has no friends, horrible graffiti written on her locker, and her car has been egged. It starts with a party, where Chelsea walks in on a guy in her class named Noah hooking up with another guy. When she gossips to the drunk group of popular kids, two of the star athletes in her class get so angry over it that they beat Noah in to a coma. Chelsea realizes that her gossip had consequences and gives up the names of the two athletes to the police (which ruins her popular status) and soon decides a vow of silence is the best way to keep her words from hurting anyone else. When you stop talking, you start becoming a better listener, and before she knows it Chelsea has started to form unexpected friendships with people she would never have noticed before.

This book is a good cautionary tale about the dangers of gossiping and spreading rumors. Anyone who likes stories about characters changing for the better will really enjoy this.


YA Book Review- Spoiled by Heather Cocks

Have you ever daydreamed about finding out you’re secretly the heir to a fortune, or the child of a movie star? In this story, Molly Dix discovers exactly that from her mother who is dying of cancer. After her mother passes, Molly’s unknown father- who happens to be mega action-star Brick Berlin- flies her out to Hollywood to start her new life with him. Not only does she now only have to ask to get anything she’s ever wanted, but she has a new half sister too! Molly is a simple Midwestern girl who has a lot to get used to now that she is living the glamorous life of one of Brick Berlin’s daughters. Her new sister, Brooke, seems happy to guide her in the right direction…but nothing is really as it seems in this town.

This book is a whirlwind of scenes set in exciting and sparkly Hollywood. The authors of this novel have a celebrity gossip blog, so all of their descriptions are accurate looks in to this world. Grab this up if you like designer clothes, celebrities and paparazzi, long-lost-family stories, or you just need something new and different! Bonus: there’s a sequel that stars one of the friends Molly makes at her new Hollywood prep school, so if you love this, there is MORE!


YA Book Review- Delirium by Lauren Oliver

In Lena’s future United States, love is considered a disease. It is blamed for all of the wars, illness, and hatred that humans have ever brought on themselves. This is why the government has come up with a “cure” that is supposed to prevent a person from experiencing love. It isn’t legal to administer the cure until the subject is 18, so Lena is waiting for her turn. She has an urgent need for the cure because of her family history: her mother committed suicide in the name of love. What Lena doesn’t realize is how much is going on beneath the surface of her little world and how much love still thrives. When she falls in love with a boy who was never cured, suddenly her urgent needs all center around him and she begins to realize just how terrible a world without love can be.

This book is beautifully written, full of intense moments, picks up with major action sequences towards the end, and really makes you think. I would say this book is great for almost anyone, especially romance readers, sci-fi- enthusiasts, and philosophers.  Additionally, this is the first book in a thrilling trilogy so keep an eye out for reviews of the next two volumes!


YA Book Review- Jake, Reinvented by Gordon Korman

Jake Garrett is the new kid in town, and he’s taken Fitzgerald High by storm. The school year has barely started and he’s already a star football player who throws the craziest house parties anyone has ever seen. But who is he, where did he come from, and why is he bending over backwards to spend time with the quarterback’s girlfriend? Told from the perspective of high-schooler Rick, readers look on as Jake makes a huge impact on the town and things quickly spiral out of control.

This story is a re-write of the classic novel The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. The author, famous for his sports-centric novels, takes a story originally set in the age of flappers and spins it to fit in a modern-day suburban high school. He takes great care to change things to fit the new setting, while keeping true to the elements of the original tale. Grab this up if you like new versions of old classics, high school drama, and football stories.

Jake Reinvented