Squad by Maggie Tokuda-Hall and Lisa Sterle
Greenwillow / HarperCollins
Publication Date: October 5, 2021
Set in a San Francisco suburb, Piedmont High becomes Becca’s new scene to be popular and powerful. A chance meeting in the girls bathroom between Marley and Becca is more than fate; it’s as if Becca was the new choice of prey. All she has to do is learn to dress, act, and party like the ‘group.’ Soon, Amanda, Arianna, and Marley offer Becca the invitation of a lifetime…to join the Squad. Becca doesn’t think twice, she just howls, and it becomes business as usual—until an auspicious night with Thatcher, Arianna’s boyfriend, and the power balance topples…. What will this mean for the Squad? What will happen to Becca?
Continue reading Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Featured Review of Squad by Maggie Tokuda-Hall and Lisa Sterle
Nubia: The Real One by L.L. McKinney, Illustrated by Robyn Smith
Publication Date: February 23, 2021
Nubia has Amazonian strength, but after using her strength to stop a robbery, she is the one who ends up in handcuffs. Even a superhero is not immune to racist police brutality, and sadly, this is not the first time something like that has happened to her. When her best friend is repeatedly harassed by a white boy who will not take no for an answer and a protest turns deadly, Nubia must decide whether she is going to potentially reveal her secret identity to protect the ones that she loves.
Continue reading Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers (#QP2022) Featured Review of Nubia: The Real One by L.L. McKinney and Illustrated by Robyn Smith
Each quarter, the Selected Lists teams compile the titles that have been officially nominated to date. These are titles that have been suggested by the team or through the title suggestion form, read by multiple members of the team, and received approval to be designated an official nomination. At the end of the year, the final list of nominations and each Selected List’s Top Ten will be chosen from these titles.
Alienated. By Simon Spurrier. Art by Chris Wildgoose. 2020. BOOM! Studios. $19.99 (9781684155279).
Three teenagers named Sam (Samuel, Samantha, and Samir) encounter an alien with incredible powers that bonds to them. But will they use those powers for good or for evil?
Asadora!, v.1. By Naoki Urasawa. VIZ Media / VIZ Signature. $14.99 (9781974717460).
A storm sweeps into Nagoya, and young Asadora—with the help of unlikely friends—must find a way to rescue her family. But there’s more to the storm than just rain and wind as Asa soon discovers.
Continue reading Great Graphic Novels (#GGN2022) Nominations Round-Up, Spring
Each quarter, the Selected Lists teams compile the titles that have been officially nominated to date. These books have been suggested by the team or through the title suggestion form, read by multiple members of the team, and received approval to be designated an official nomination. At the end of the year, the final list of nominations and each Selected List’s Top Ten will be chosen from these titles.
Becoming Muhammad Ali. By James Patterson and Kwame Alexander. Art by Dawud Anyabwile. 2020. Little, Brown/JIMMY Patterson. $16.99 (9780316498166).
James Patterson and Kwame Alexander tackle the life of Cassius Clay before he became Muhammad Ali in this novel that mixes prose and verse.
Chlorine Sky. By Mahogany L. Browne. Penguin Random House/Crown. $17.99 (9780593176399).
In this novel in verse, Mahogany Browne explores what it’s like to lose a best friend but find yourself.
Continue reading Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers (#QP2022) Nominations Round-Up, Spring
The Truth Project by Dante Medema
Quill Tree Books / Harper Collins
Publication Date: October 30, 2020
High school senior Cordelia has her senior writing project all planned: she’ll take a DNA test just like her sister did, and write about identity and her family history. She also manages to get paired with her childhood crush, Kodiak, on the project. But when her genealogy results come in, Cordelia learns her father is not who she thought — which sends her spiraling as her plan for her senior year completely changes.
This free verse novel has a lot of white space on the page and reads quickly. Poems are short and spaced out. Additional storytelling comes in the form of text messages and emails, adding some variety while keeping things fast-paced. The writing is clear, and the plot is straightforward. The search for identity is a familiar theme with strong emotional appeal to teens, and many teens will relate to Delia’s sense of being out-of-place even among the people who know her best.
Continue reading Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers (#QP2022) Featured Review of The Truth Project by Dante Medema