Diana is desperate to prove herself. Surrounded by warriors who make every feat of strength and agility look like a cake walk, she does her best to stand out.
When her big chance comes, however, she throws it all away to rescue a teenager drowning off the coast of her island home.
Interacting with a human is strictly forbidden in Diana's culture, let alone saving one and hiding them in a cave.
This, however is no ordinary human. Her name is Alia and unbeknownst to her she is a Warbringer, someone who may be responsible for the greatest war ever to befall the human race.
Using a controversial myth as a guide, Alia and Diana set off to end the curse that Alia has become convinced she carries.
Full of action, sarcastic wit and strong female characters, Wonder Woman: Warbringer is a great teen read for anyone who loves superhero backstories. Bardugo has created a character with real depth that flies off the page, highly recommend this!
Ever wonder what your toys get up to when you go to sleep? Take that premise and blur the lines between reality and hazy dream world and you'll get the Land of Neverendings.
When Emily's sister Holly dies, Emily is struck by the little things that she misses, particularly Holly's toy bear, Bluey.
Emily would spend countless hours making up stories about Bluey and his adventures in the magical world of Smockeroom to make Holly happy.
Now, it's all gone, as is the magic that Holly seemed to bring with her.
Emily's only companion is her neighbour Ruth, who lost her son when he was a teenager. Together they share the grief that only those who have lost a close family member can understand.
Then, one night, Emily experiences a vivid dream in which toys visit her in the night and tell her that not only is Smockeroom real, that Bluey is there and happy. Initially, Emily shakes it off as a simple but weird dream. But when Ruth confesses to her that she's been having the same kind of dreams, things start to get really weird.
Emily & Ruth are soon thrust into a world of magic and make-believe, adventure and danger. The Land of Neverendings reads like something you catch out of the corner of your eye when you're young and sick in bed with a high fever. I mean that as a compliment, it's dreamy, odd and sad yet Emily is a feisty character that any young teen will look up to. Highly recommend this great novel!
The future sound of London is an air raid siren.
Lex lives on The Strip. No not the area of Las Vegas which according to everyone who goes there "has been ruined since the mob left".
The Strip is what's left of London after a series of brutal wars between the government and an organisation known as The Corps.
To the government, The Corps are terrorists, plain and simple. To those in The Corps, the government's 24-hour drone surveillance, lies and disorder has left them no choice but to fight back.
Lex's father is a member of The Corps, and therefore a target. Their family does their best to survive in an anxious, bombed-out reality.
Lex wants to do something meaningful with his life, but he doesn't know what that means yet.
Alan is climbing the government ladder, he controls a surveillance drone and watches Lex's father for any suspicious activity. Alan lives with his mother, who disapproves of his career choice. Alan's plan is to make enough money to move out and never see his mother again.
Although Lex and Alan never meet in person, their lives are tied together through government policy and fear and the horrible nightmare that is everyday life in The Strip.
We See Everything is a tight thriller that is all-too real given the current climate in the United States and around the world. It's a book about choosing which side you're on when you don't really want to choose a side at all. It's about trying to survive the ignorance of those who hold power in our world and it's about protecting those that are important to you.
I really enjoyed this novel, check it out!
The Call is my worst nightmare.
In a good way.
I devoured this novel in a few hours while waiting for a plane. I loved it.
It's a world where the adolescences of Ireland can be "Called" at any moment by the Sídhe, a race of fairies that live in a parallel universe that resides "underground."
The Sídhe aren't your run of the mill fairies that sprinkle dust around and attend tiny balls and sit on toadstools all day.
They are truly terrifying monsters, and when they "Call" a youth to their land, they rarely let them live. in fact, they ensure that they are hideously tortured and maimed. When a child is "Called", they simply vanish from thin air, leaving nothing but their clothes behind. They stay away for three minutes and four seconds, but in Sídhe it's much, much longer.
The land of the Sídhe is Dante's Inferno combined with something from Joe Hill's Locke & Key series. Twisted, depraved and sadistic, the Sídhe love to torture anyone they "Call". The creatures that don't adhere to the Sídhe's rule are usually ravenous and simply want to eat the children.
Those that survive the Sídhe are never the same, they are either disfigured or suffering from PTSD so severe they can't properly function.
Luckily, Ness and her classmates have been training for years, gleaning any information they can from the survivors so they can endure a "Call" and outlive the Sídhe's hideous land.
The Call is a pedal to the metal gore-fest that pits students against each other as they try to train rigidly enough to survive a horrible ordeal. All of them know that at any moment they can be "Called" and that they most likely won't survive. The anxiety and fear the students face are palpable in this novel and the horrors the Sídhe dish out are truly disturbing.
With a large group of students who love horror, I know that The Call is going to be one of our most popular books in the coming year!
While driving home one evening with his parents, Kofi sees something on a roundabout. It's dark and furry and rolled up in a ball.
He thinks it might be a hurt animal, although his gut tells him it's not, and he's right.
At first, Kofi thinks it's an alien, but after he speaks and introduces itself as Rorty Thrutch, Kofi isn't so sure.
As Kofi gets to know Rorty, he realises that Rorty possess extraordinary powers, like copying things with his mind and making them appear out of thin air.
Since Rorty can copy things, he can also delete them. After Kofi takes Rorty in, it becomes clear that dangerous people are hunting him. Kofi and his friends must devise a plan to keep Rorty hidden and uncover where exactly he's from before it's too late.
I enjoyed this novel, I thought the description of the bullying and back and forth between Kofi and the other school children was genuine. I know the school children I work with will really enjoy the adventure and friendship elements of the Starman and Me. If you're looking for a book with a lot of heart with children outwitting the adults, this is for you!
To say Chipper is a smart dog is like saying the internet had a small impact on society.
Chipper is a product of a top-secret and nefarious program developed by a shady organisation known only as The Institute.
The Institute implants chips and programs into dogs to turn them into super-spies. Imagine Lassie working for the Inner Party and you get the idea.
The problem is despite all of the efforts on the part of the Institute, Chipper is still too independent and portrays too much of a "regular" dog personality.
Therefore they make the decision to put Chipper down and cut their losses.
Chipper has other ideas. Using his newfound super-smarts, he breaks free from the Institute and runs away.
Meanwhile. Jeff Conroy is working for his taskmaster aunt at her lakeside business where she rents cabins to weekend fisherman and people just trying to forget the daily grind for a while. Jeff's parents were killed in a tragic plane crash and even though she doesn't appear to possess one ounce of parent skills, Jeff's aunt took him in anyway and put him to work at the camp site.
Little does Jeff know that his life is about to be thrust into warp-speed when he and Chipper meet and find themselves on the run from the Institute's hired guns.
This fast-paced thriller is going to be a huge hit with our reluctant readers at the high school library I work at. It has non-stop action, memorable characters and a huge twist that will have teens crawling for the sequel. Loved it!
When I was a kid I was obsessed with UFOs.
My dad witnessed the unexplained object streak across the sky at his home in Clark's Harbour Nova Scotia in 1967. It would be known as the Shag Harbour UFO incident because many locals claimed to have seen a craft crash into the ocean. Some told stories of thick orange foam covering the top of the water and Russian ships suddenly converging on the area.
Whatever it was, it was an experience shared by others and the stories remain to this day.
Encounters is all about a shared experience. Based on the Ruwa, Zimbabwe UFO incident when dozens of school children claimed to have seen silver discs land behind their school, Encounters follows the journey of six children that have their lives changed forever because of the alleged alien encounter.
The most fascinating UFO experiences that I have read about are the ones where the witnesses share some kind of collective unconscious aftermath - they have recurring nightmares that are eerily similar to each other, they daydream about the same thing and they often have an almost indescribable feeling of never being alone.
Wallace captures this experience perfectly. In Ruwa, the school children drew pictures of what they saw. The pictures that were drawn were almost identical to each other. In Encounters, The school children draw the same images and each have the itchy feeling that the creatures that they saw emerge from the ships were warning them about something.
For each of the six children, all suffering from turbulent home lives in some for or another, the warnings mean different things.
If you're fascinated with stories about people who've claimed to see UFOs, you simply can't ignore this book. Its tone is pitch perfect, a dream-like haze mingles with the boiling heat of the African sun, creating an eerie atmosphere that will stick in your guts for a long, long time.
Alex Petroski is on a mission. He and his best friend, Carl Sagan (his dog, not the actual astronomer) are headed to the biggest science and rocket festival around.
The problem is, Alex is only 11 and he's headed out on his own. His mom, according to Alex, is having one of her "quiet days" and didn't seem to mind that he left the house. Alex's older brother Ronnie lives in L.A. because he's a talent agent so he can't help either.
So, armed with a train ticket, Alex decides to head to New Mexico on his own. He's taking with him his prized possession, his Golden iPod because he's going to launch said iPod into space with the rocket that he built.
For ages he's been recording his voice into the iPod, explaining what Earth life is like so that when his iPod is picked up by aliens, they'll have a ton of information about Earth before they visit.
Along the way Alex meets a cast of characters that will eventually take him to Las Vegas, Los Angeles and back to Colorado. Alex's innocence is undercut but his inquisitiveness and general toughness as he learns things about life that no 11 year old should have to cope with.
Written primarily from Alex's perspective, we as the reader slowly become aware of Alex's situation. Although he's clever and tough, Alex can't quite come to terms with his home life.
Sweet and hard-hitting at the same time, I know fans of My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece and We Are All Made of Molecules will really sink their teeth into this story!
Zoe needs a change, and a change she is going to get.
She's seventeen & had a very rough year. Her father died while exploring a cave and her neighbours have vanished from their home.
When the mother of all blizzards hits her hometown and her mother is trapped in a grocery store, she sets off on her own to find her brother Jonah and their two dogs who've gotten lost in the woods.
After finding Jonah, things somehow get worse when a creep called Stan the Man appears, attacks Zoe & Jonah and attempts to kill their dogs.
They are saved by what Zoe thinks is an angel. A shirtless teenage boy who appears out of the blue and with a click of his fingers sends a river of fear flowing through Stand and in turn changes the colour of the snow around them.
The boy is called X. Well, that's what Zoe calls him at least, and he's no angel. In fact, he's from Hell. Except it's not called Hell, it's called the Lowlands and it turns out X is a bounty hunter, sent to capture evil souls that roam above ground. The rules of the Lowlands are strict, and although Zoe finds herself falling for X, she knows it's not meant to be.
Soon, she's swept up in X's world and the dangers that inhabit it. And it's not just her that's in danger, it's her entire family. The Edge of Everything is a great modern-fantasy romance with a twist that will be gobbled up with glee by both boys and girls and the high school I work at, and that's a great thing!
I recommend it to ages 14 and up!
When Tess & Max are sent to the English countryside for the summer to stay with their aunt Evie, the last thing they expect to find is a magical castle tucked away behind a series of hedges.
But that's exactly what happens.
There are truly wonderful things to see at the castle, mazes, fish under the drawbridge, swans, a magical carousel and of course William, a boy that is about the same age as Tess.
William acts as a friend and guide as he unveils the magic behind the castle.
Throughout their adventures, William provides a constant warning: don't go near the hawthorn trees. When Max forget to heeds this advice, Tess finds herself on a mission that could have disastrous consequences.
The Castle in the MIst is fun, exciting read tailor made for fans of Susan Cooper's The Dark is Rising series. I can't wait ot get this into the hands of our Year 7s at the school library I manage, they are going to devour it!