Douglas County Libraries Staff Recommendations

Here are a few staff favorites you might enjoy — two are contemporary YA fiction and one is an autobiography.

boysdontknitBoys Don’t Knit (In Public)

by T.S. Easton

Ben Fletcher must get a grip on his more “feminine” side following an unfortunate incident with a lollipop lady and a stolen bottle of Martini Rosso from Waitrose. It was all a big misunderstanding, of course.

To avoid the Young Offenders unit, Ben is ordered to give something back to the community and develop his sense of social alignment. Take up a hobby and keep on the straight and narrow. The hot teacher he likes runs a knitting group, so Ben, reluctantly at first, gets “stuck in.” Not easy when your dad is a sports fan and thinks Jeremy Clarkson is a god. To his surprise, Ben finds that he likes knitting and that he has a mean competitive streak. If he can just keep it all a secret from his mates, and notice that the girl of his dreams, girl-next-door Megan Hooper, has a bit of a thing for him.

Symptoms of Being Humansymptoms

by Jeff Garvin

The first thing you’re going to want to know about me is: Am I a boy, or am I a girl?

Riley Cavanaugh is many things: punk rock, snarky, rebellious, and gender fluid. Some days Riley identifies as a boy, and others as a girl. The thing is, Riley isn’t exactly out yet. And between starting a new school and having a congressman father running for re-election in uber-conservative Orange County, the pressure — media and otherwise — is building up in Riley’s so-called “normal” life.

On the advice of a therapist, Riley starts an anonymous blog to tell the truth of what it’s really like to be a gender-fluid teenager. But just as Riley’s starting to settle in at school, the blog goes viral and an unnamed commenter discovers Riley’s real identity, threatening exposure. Riley must make a choice: Walk away from what the blog has created — a lifeline, new friends, a cause to believe in — or stand up, come out, and risk everything.

weshouldhangout

We Should Hang Out Sometime (Embarrassingly, a True Story)

by Josh Sundquist
Why was (Paralympic ski racer and cancer survivor) Josh still single? To find out, he tracked down the girls he had tried to date and asked them straight up: What went wrong? The results of Josh’s semiscientific, wholly hilarious investigation are captured here. From a disastrous putt-putt date involving a backward prosthetic foot, to his introduction to CFD (close fast dancing), to a misguided “grand gesture” at a Miss America pageant, this story is about looking for love — or at least a girlfriend — in all the wrong places.

New April Releases

Here are some exciting new YA novels releasing in April 2017:

given

Given to the Sea

by Mindy McGinnis
Genre(s): Fantasy, Adventure, Romance, Political. This is the first in a new fantasy series by the author of The Female of the SpeciesNot a Drop to Drink, and A Madness So Discreet. Told from two teens in an arranged marriage, two siblings of the war-ridden native tribe, and a soldier with a secret. Dive into this world of magic, tradition and intrigue. Release date: April 11, 2017

upside

The Upside of Unrequited

by Becky Albertalli
Genre(s): LGBTQ+, Realistic Fiction, Humor. Molly is all about loving from afar and has never been loved back. Her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to get over it, but that’s easy for her to say when she is skinny and confident in her sexuality. But then Cassie’s new girlfriend brings along a hipster boy sidekick, just when Molly notices that her new co-worker is the right amount of nerdy. How can someone go from having no prospects to having too many? Release date: April 11, 2017

alex

Alex and Eliza

by Melissa de la Cruz
Genre(s): Historical Fiction, Romance. In love with Hamilton: The Musical?  Then read this origin love story about Alexander Hamilton and Eliza Schuyler. It’s 1777, and Alex and Eliza meet for the first time at the Schuylers’ ball, beginning a love story that alters the course of American history. Release date: April 11, 2017

defy

Defy the Stars

by Claudia Gray
Genre(s): Science Fiction, Adventure, Suspense. Noemi is a space soldier for the planet Genesis. In the middle of a battle she gets stranded on a floating piece of machinery run by the AI, Abel. Their relationship grows complicated as Abel is forced to submit to Noemi as his commander and aid her as she journeys to save her planet, all while his feelings grow into something more human. Release date: April 4, 2017

lost

Letters to the Lost

by Brigid Kemmerer
Genre(s): Realistic Fiction, Romance. Juliet writes letters to her mother, an investigative international journalist. She continues to write letters, leaving them on her mom’s grave after her unexpected death. Declan reads one of these haunting letters and can’t help but write back. This begins a relationship neither one ever expected — discovering truths that might save them or tear them apart. Release date: April 4, 2017

 

New This Month: February 2017

Here are six of the many new titles Douglas County Libraries added this month. Check them out!

piecingmetogetherPiecing Me Together by Renee Watson 

Jade believes she must get out of her neighborhood if she’s ever going to succeed. Her mother says she has to take every opportunity, and she has. She accepted a scholarship to a mostly white private school and even Saturday morning test prep opportunities. But some opportunities feel more demeaning than helpful, like the invitation to join Women to Women, a mentorship program for “at-risk” girls. Except really, it’s for black girls. From “bad” neighborhoods.

Jade doesn’t need support. And just because her mentor is black doesn’t mean she understands Jade. Maybe there are some things Jade could show these successful women about the real world and finding ways to make a real difference.

Friendship, race, privilege, identity — this compelling and thoughtful story explores the issues young women face.

 

 

tragickindofwonderfulA Tragic Kind of Wonderful by Eric Lindstrom

For 16-year-old Mel Hannigan, bipolar disorder makes life unpredictable. Her latest struggle is balancing her growing feelings in a new relationship with her instinct to keep everyone at arm’s length. When a former friend confronts Mel with the truth about how their relationship ended, deeply buried secrets threaten to come out and upend her shaky equilibrium.

As the walls of Mel’s compartmentalized world crumble, she fears the worst — that her friends will abandon her if they learn the truth about what she’s been hiding. Can Mel bring herself to risk everything to find out?

 

 

Continue reading “New This Month: February 2017”

Nonfiction Spotlight: LGBTQ+ Teens

Here are some great books for anyone looking to learn more about the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ+) community.

by Susan Kuklin

A 2015 Stonewall Honor Book, this groundbreaking work of LGBT literature takes an honest look at the lives, loves and struggles of transgender teens. Author and photographer Susan Kuklin met and interviewed six transgender or gender-neutral young adults and used her considerable skills to represent them thoughtfully and respectfully before, during and after their personal acknowledgments of gender preference. Portraits, family photographs, and candid images grace the pages, augmenting the emotional and physical journey each youth has taken. Each honest discussion and disclosure, whether joyful or heartbreaking, is completely different from the others because of family dynamics, living situations, gender, and the transition these teens make in recognition of their true selves.

 

 

 

thisbookisgay

by James Dawson

Lesbian. Bisexual. Queer. Transgender. Straight. Curious. This book is for everyone, regardless of gender or sexual preference. This book is for anyone who’s ever dared to wonder. This book is for you. There’s a long-running joke that after “coming out,” a lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans person should receive a membership card and instruction manual. Think of this as that manual. You’re welcome. Inside, you’ll find the answers to all the questions you ever wanted to ask: from sex to politics, hooking up to stereotypes, coming out and more. This candid, funny and uncensored exploration of sexuality and what it’s like to grow up LGBT also includes real stories from people across the gender and sexual spectrums, not to mention hilarious illustrations. You will be entertained. You will be informed. But most importantly, you will know that however you identify (or don’t) and whomever you love, you are exceptional. You matter. And so does this book.

 

 

 

queer

by Kathy Belge

Teen life is hard enough with all of the pressures kids face, but for teens who are LGBT it’s even harder. When do you decide to come out? To whom? Will your friends accept you? And how on earth do you meet people to date? Queer is a humorous, engaging and honest guide that helps LGBT teens come out to friends and family, navigate their new LGBT social life, figure out if a crush is also queer, and rise up against bigotry and homophobia. It also includes personal stories from the authors, and sidebars on queer history. It’s a must read for teens who think they might be queer — or know someone who is.