Books for Giving 2011: Teen Books

We know how it is: you want to give those teens on your list something to readthis Holiday Season, but don’t want your gift to be tossed aside amongst the socks and sweaters. Librarians Hayden and Jennifer offer some recent favorites that are as captivating as the lastest gadgets, and way more interesting than mere gift cards.

Hayden’s Picks:

Island’s End by Padma Venkatraman
Island's End, by Padma VenkatramanUido can travel to the Other World, where the spirits give her important messages about her tribe. Because of this gift, the tribe’s elderly spiritual leader chooses her as his successor. But can Uido save her people from annihilation? Though this book will likely appeal to fans of both fantasy and historical fiction, it is neither—Uido’s tribe is based on contemporary hunter-gathers who live on the Andaman Islands off the coast of India.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
Karou was raised by monsters, but she doesn’t know much about their world. When she meets Akiva, an angel, she finds that she has been living on the cusp of an ancient and terrible war—and that she and Akiva are on opposite sides. Perfect for older teens (or adult) who loves paranormal romance—this one is a standout in a crowded genre.

Beauty Queens by Libba Bray
What do you get when an airplane full of teenaged beauty pageant contestants and a boatload of reality television pirates crash on a deserted island? It sounds like the set-up for a joke, and in many ways, it is. This campy, over-the-top satire has it all: romance, heartbreak, self-discovery, adventure, and feminism for beginners. The audio version, read by the author, is a treat.

Revolver by Marcus Sedgwick
Revolver, by Marcus SedgwickIn the opening scene of this award-winning novel, Sig is alone in a cabin–except for his father’s frozen corpse. There is an ominous knock at the door. From there, Sig must fight for his life while unraveling the secret of his father’s death. A short and thrilling read.

Jennifer’s Picks:

Virals by Kathy Reichs
An adrenaline-fueled, forensics murder mystery with smart male and female characters. After being exposed to an experimental parvovirus while freeing a medical test dog, four teens use their newfound powers to dodge multiple assassins and solve a decades old murder. For teens who like adventure, mysteries, science fiction, and can handle a little bit of blood. Written by the author of the Bones series.

The Clockwork Three by Matthew J Kirby
The Clockwork Three, by Matthew KirbyFans of Hugo Cabret will love this rollicking action adventure tale of friendship between an immigrant orphan, a tenement girl, and a clockmaker’s apprentice bound together by fate and a magical automaton. Lots of bad guys, chase scenes, and ultimately redemption. 4 – 7 grades.

The Various by Steve Augarde
When Midge discovers that fairies are real, she realizes she must stop her uncle from selling his woods to a developer before it is too late and the fairy folk lose their last refuge. Fantasy lovers, especially those who like fairy tales and quest tales will love this trilogy. 4-8 grades.

Shine by Lauren Myracle
While Patrick languishes in a coma, the result of a violent gay bashing, Cat tries to catch the culprit while dealing with her own past abuse issues. Set against the backdrop of poverty, meth, and small town life, the non-stereotypical characters will surprise you. A thoughtful coming-of-age novel for teens who can handle mature topics.

Want more reading and/or gift suggestions? Ask a Teen Librarian via phone (206-615-1410), chat, email or just drop by your local branch. We’re always happy to help!

Also be sure to stop by the library’s Facebook page on Wednesday, December 7. Our librarians will be standing by to offer suggestions for the readers on your shopping list, or for your own holiday reading.

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