Freshman Booktalks Spring 2013
Welcome Freshmen! Books checked out today will be due_______!
Perfectby Natasha Friend • Following the death of her father, a teen uses bulimia as a way to avoid her mother's and ten-year-old sister's grief, as well as her own.
My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult • Conceived to provide a bone marrow match for her leukemia-stricken sister, teenage Anna begins to question her moral obligations in light of countless medical procedures and decides to fight for the right to make decisions about her own body.
Splitby SwatiAvasthi • A teenaged boy thrown out of his house by his abusive father goes to live with his older brother, who ran away from home years ago to escape the abuse.
World War Zby Max Brooks • An account of the decade-long conflict between humankind and hordes of the predatory undead is told from the perspective of dozens of survivors who describe in their own words the epic human battle for survival.
How to Build A Houseby Dana Reinhardt • When her father divorces her beloved stepmother and leaves her without her stepsister, Tess, Harper decides to join a volunteer organization to build houses for tornado victims, but struggling to figure out her role in the mix upon her arrival, Harper is befriended by Teddy who inspires her to love and trust once again.
Sunrise Over Fallujahby Walter Dean Myers • Robin Perry, from Harlem, is sent to Iraq in 2003 as a member of the Civilian Affairs Battalion, and his time there profoundly changes him.
The Fault in Our Starsby John Green • Sixteen-year-old Hazel, a stage IV thyroid cancer patient, has accepted her terminal diagnosis until a chance meeting with a boy at cancer support group forces her to reexamine her perspective on love, loss, and life.
The Devouringby Simon Holt • The existence of Vours, supernatural creatures who feast on fear and attack on the eve of the winter solstice, becomes a terrifying reality for fifteen-year-old Reggie when she begins to suspect that her timid younger brother might be one of their victims.
Wish You Were Deadby Todd Strasser • Madison, a senior at a suburban New York high school, tries to uncover who is responsible for the disappearance of her friends, popular students mentioned in the posts of an anonymous blogger, while she, herself, is being stalked online and in-person.
Naughts and Crossesby Malorie Blackman • In a world where the pale-skinned Naughts are discriminated against by the politically and socially powerful dark-skinned Crosses, teenagers Callum--a Naught--and Sephy--a Cross--test whether their love is strong enough to survive their society's racism.
Purgeby Sarah Littman • When her parents check sixteen-year-old Janie into Golden Slopes to help her recover from her bulimia, she discovers that she must talk about things she has admitted to no one--not even herself.
Jerk, Californiaby Jonathan Friesen • Plagued by Tourette's syndrome and a stepfather who despises him, Sam meets an old man in his small Midwest town who sends him on a road trip designed to help him discover the truth about his life.
Just Listenby Sarah Dessen • Isolated from friends who believe the worst because she has not been truthful with them, sixteen-year-old Annabel finds an ally in classmate Owen, whose honesty and passion for music help her to face and share what really happened at the end-of-the-year party that changed her life.
Going Bovineby Libba Bray • Cameron Smith, a disaffected sixteen year-old who, after being diagnosed with CreutzfeldJakob's (aka mad cow) disease, sets off on a road trip with a death-obsessed video gaming dwarf he meets in the hospital in an attempt to find a cure.
Does My Head Look Big in This?By Randa Abdel-Fattah Amal decides that she wants to wear the hijab, the Muslim head scarf, as a reflection of her faith. This decision has multiple consequences at her Australian prep school.
House Rules by Rachel Sontag • Traces the author's journey of recovery after a childhood marked by her mentally ill father, a respected suburban doctor with an obsessive need for control that caused him to torture his wife and children about the most minute details of their lives.
Boot Campby Todd Strasser • After ignoring several warnings to stop dating an older woman, Garrett is sent to Lake Harmony, a boot camp that uses unorthodox and brutal methods to train students to obey their parents.
Flash Burnoutby L.K. Madigan • After he takes a photograph of a woman who is living on the streets and discovers it to be the meth-addicted mother of his closest friend Marissa, Blake finds himself spending more time with Marissa than with his girlfriend.
Rooftopby Paul Volponi Clay is trying to get his life together at a drug rehabilitation program when his cousin enters the program as well. Then Clay witnesses police officers shoot his cousin. But was it a justified shooting, or should the officers be held responsible for murder?
The Helpby Kathryn Stockett • Limited and persecuted by racial divides in 1962 Jackson, Mississippi, three women, including an African-American maid, her sassy and chronically unemployed friend, and a recently graduated white woman, team up for a clandestine project.
The Future of Usby Jay Asher • Receiving her first computer and an America Online CD-ROM in 1996, student Emma and her best friend, Josh, log on and discover themselves on Facebook, fifteen years in the future, and learn astonishing things about their adult selves.
Hurricane Songby Paul Volponi • High school sophomore Miles Shaw goes to live with his father, a jazz musician, in New Orleans, and together they survive the horrors of Hurricane Katrina in the Superdome, learning about each other and growing closer through their painful experiences.
Leaving Paradiseby Simone Elkeles In alternating chapters, seventeen-year-olds Caleb and Maggie relate the difficulties of readjusting to school, and changing relationships with family, friends, and one another, a year after a drunk driving accident sent her to the hospital with a crippling leg injury and him to prison.
Ready Player Oneby Ernest Cline • Immersing himself in a mid-twenty-first-century technological virtual utopia to escape an ugly real world of famine, poverty, and disease, Wade Watts joins an increasingly violent effort to solve a series of puzzles by the virtual world's creator.
Cuba 15 by Nancy Osa Violet Paz, a Chicago high school student, reluctantly prepares for her upcoming "quince," a nickname for the celebration of an Hispanic girl's fifteenth birthday.
Rashby Pete Hautman • In a future society that has decided it would "rather be safe than free," sixteen-year-old Bo's anger control problems land him in a tundra jail where he survives with the help of his running skills and an artificial intelligence program named Bork.
Eon: Dragoneye Rebornby Alison Goodman • Eon has disguised herself as a boy in order to study Dragon Magic and become a Dragoneye, one of a select group that forms a conduit to the power of energy dragons, but if the secret of her sex comes out, she will be killed.
Artichoke’s Heartby Suzanne Supplee • Sixteen year old Rosemary decides she is sick of being overweight, mocked at school and at her mother's beauty salon, and feeling out of control. As she slowly loses weight, she realizes that she is able to cope with her mother's cancer, having a boyfriend for the first time, and discovering that other people's lives are not as perfect as they seem from the outside.
Shelterby Harlan Coben • After tragic events tear Mickey Bolitar away from his parents, he is forced to live with his estranged Uncle Myron and switch high schools, where he finds both friends and enemies, but when his new girlfriend, Ashley, vanishes, he follows her trail into a seedy underworld that reveals she is not what she seems to be.
We Were Hereby Matt De La Pena • Haunted by the event that sentences him to time in a group home, Miguel breaks out with two unlikely companions and together they begin their journey down the California coast hoping to get to Mexico and a new life.
Codetalkerby Joseph Bruchac After being taught in a boarding school run by whites that Navajo is a useless language, Ned Begay and other Navajo men are recruited by the Marines to become Code Talkers, sending messages during World War II in their native tongue.
City of BonesCassandra Clare • Suddenly able to see demons and the Darkhunters who are dedicated to returning them to their own dimension, fifteen-year-old Clary Fray is drawn into this bizzare world when her mother disappears and Clary herself is almost killed by a monster.
A Room on Lorelei Streetby Mary E. Pearson • To escape a miserable existence taking care of her alcoholic mother, seventeen-year-old Zoe rents a room from an eccentric woman, but her earnings as a waitress after school are minimal and she must go to extremes to cover expenses.
Black and Whiteby Paul Volponi • Two star high school basketball players, one black and one white, experience the justice system differently after committing a crime together and getting caught.
Nightshadeby Andrea Cremer • Calla and Ren have been raised knowing it is their destiny to mate with one another and rule over their shape-shifting wolf pack, but when a human boy arrives and vies for Calla's heart, she is faced with a decision that could change her whole world.
Crackback by John Coy • Miles barely recalls when football was fun after being sidelined by a new coach, constantly criticized by his father, and pressured by his best friend to take performance-enhancing drugs.
The Afterlife by Gary Soto • A senior at East Fresno High School lives on as a ghost after his brutal murder in the restroom of a club where he had gone to dance.
Welcome Freshmen! Books checked out today will be due _______!
What Happened to Cass McBride? A Novel by Gail Giles After his younger brother commits suicide, Kyle Kirby decides to exact revenge on the person he holds responsible
Why I Fightby J. Adams Oaks • After his house burns down, twelve-year-old Wyatt Reaves takes off with his uncle, and the two of them drive from town to town for six years, earning money mostly by fighting, until Wyatt finally confronts his parents one last time.
Twisted by Laurie Halse Anderson • After finally getting noticed by someone other than school bullies and his ever-angry father, seventeen-year-old Tyler enjoys his tough new reputation and the attentions of a popular girl, but when life starts to go bad again, he must choose between transforming himself or giving in to his destructive thoughts.
The Absolutely True Story of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie Budding cartoonist Junior leaves his troubled school on the Spokane Indian Reservation to attend an all-white farm town school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.
Beastlyby Alex Flinn • A modern retelling of "Beauty and the Beast" from the point of view of the Beast, a vain Manhattan private school student who is turned into a monster and must find true love before he can return to his human form.
Cloakedby Alex Flinn • Seventeen-year-old Johnny is approached at his family's struggling shoe repair shop in a Miami, Florida, hotel by Alorian Princess Victoriana, who asks him to find her brother who was turned into a frog.
The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer • In a future where humans despise clones, Matt enjoys special status as the young clone of El Patron, the 140-year-old leader of a corrupt drug empire nestled between Mexico and the United States.