Click here to see all of the current Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers nominees along with more information about the list and past years’ selections.
If You’re Out There by Katy Loutzenhiser
Balzer & Bray; Harper & Collins
Publication Date: March 5, 2019
Zan and Priya have been best friends forever. That’s why Zan thinks it is so strange that after Priya suddenly moves to California it is as though she has dropped off the face of the earth. Zan never hears from her best friend. Priya ghosts her, even though Zan sends her loads of emails, texts and makes tons of phone calls. Priya’s Instagram account has some really weird posts that Zan thinks sound totally off. While Priya’s stepdad assures everyone that all is fine, Zan tries to convince her loved ones that something is seriously wrong with Priya. Why won’t anyone believe her?
This exciting mystery features a very strong heroine, multicultural characters, and a cool romance between Zan and the only guy willing to believe that she might be right about Priya, making this a fun, fast read.
Fans of Sharon Draper, who like culturally and sexually diverse characters and Sarah Dessen, who features fast-paced, realistic fiction, will enjoy this mystery/romance.
– Allison Gray
Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte
GP Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: February 26, 2019
Quadara is ruled by four queens who share a castle, each section
of which is totally different, reflecting her part of the nation.
17-year-old Keralie is a master thief. When she steals a box of
memory chips from a guy named Varin, she swallows them to
hide her crime. By doing so, she gains the memories of each of
the queens, who have either been murdered or are about to be.
Keralie and Valin must try to stop these horrible crimes before
everyone finds out about the murdered queens and Quadarian
This thrilling fantasy, reminiscent of “The Hunger Games”, features wonderful main characters and four queens for whom readers will care deeply. There is a truly shocking plot twist that no one will see coming.
Fans of fantasy, adventure, romance, and mystery will find all of those elements in this fast-paced royal dystopian novel.
– Allison Gray