Tag Archive | behavior

Celebrate the rainbow spectrum – read with your ears! (audiobook recommendations)

For Pride Month, AudioSYNC brings us real-life and fictional accounts of teens across the rainbow of gender and sexuality.

You have until Wednesday 28 June 2023 to download either or both of these professionally produced audiobooks into your Sora shelf. Get all the details here.

The Audiofile review page for each audiobook include a link to their podcast discussion of the book!

Get ready to read with your ears!

CD cover of Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out, by Susan Kuklin | Read by Tanya Eby, Nick Podehl, Todd Haberkorn, Roxanne Hernandez, Janina Edwards, Nancy Wu, Marisol Ramirez. Published by Brilliance Audio/Candlewick

Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out (free Sora download 6/22-6/28/23)
by Susan Kuklin | Read by Tanya Eby, Nick Podehl, Todd Haberkorn, Roxanne Hernandez, Janina Edwards, Nancy Wu, Marisol Ramirez
Published by Brilliance Audio/Candlewick

Two trans feminine, two trans masculine, and two nonbinary young people spoke candidly with Susan Kuklin about their struggles to be accepted.

These real interview transcripts of gender non-conforming teens also include some family members; all narrated by professional voice actors with emotion and empathy.

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/225998/beyond-magenta-by-susan-kuklin-read-by-tanya-eby-nick-podehl/

swirling lines clipart http://www.clipartpanda.com/clipart_images/mondays-throughout-the-day-17164159
CD cover of Loveless, by Alice Oseman | Read by Billie Fulford-Brown, Elizabeth Schenk, Imogen Church. Published by Scholastic Audiobooks

Loveless (free Sora download 6/22-6/28/23)
by Alice Oseman | Read by Billie Fulford-Brown, Elizabeth Schenk, Imogen Church
Published by Scholastic Audiobooks

Surely her first year of college will be when Georgia finally has a crush, gets kissed, falls in love…right?

New friends and old help the British teen find her true self and claim her identity as asexual/aromantic.

I recommended Loveless here on BooksYALove.

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/206271/loveless-by-alice-oseman-read-by-billie-fulford-brown-elizabeth-schenk/

What’s your favorite story with gender-nonconforming characters?
**kmm

divider clipart http://www.clipartpanda.com/clipart_images/mondays-throughout-the-day-17164159

SIDE EFFECTS of meds worse than her anxiety? by Ted Anderson, Tara O’Connor, Dave Sharpe (Graphic Novel review)

book cover of Side Effects, by Ted Anderson; art & color - Tara O'Connor; lettering - Dave Sharpe. Published by Seismic Press | recommended on BooksYALove.com

First time living away from home,
her anxiety skyrockets…
she can’t get through college like this.

Hannah has always been worried and anxious, but everything new at college is just so overwhelming. After a deep depressive episode, her roommate helps her connect with a therapist on campus.

Dr. Jacobs is calm and reassuring, offering medication if Hannah wants to try it and cautioning her to watch for unusual side effects before her next appointment. Her brother Levi is supportive and wishes their mom would work on her own anxiety.

Oh, wow, what side effects! Such headaches, and she zaps anything she touches with electric shocks – even co-worker Jay at the library notices, yet still invites her to a very quiet, low-key party at his dorm.

Wow, Hannah is brave enough to go to the party and meet new people, including lovely Iz!

A new medication that won’t cause the terrible headaches makes Hannah disassociate from her body – is she really seeing through walls and reading people’s minds?

Her movie and dinner date with Iz is perfect! Then… crickets, no answer when Hannah texts her – what went wrong?

As freshman year rolls on, Hannah keeps trying to help herself and allows others to help her, too.

This graphic novel begins with a content warning about the mental and emotional distresses depicted and concludes with notes from the author and a mental health professional.

For help, call or text the free and confidential Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 9-8-8 any time, any hour.

In a new place or situation, what do you think about first?
**kmm

Book info: Side Effects / written by Ted Anderson; art & color by Tara O’Connor; lettering by Dave Sharpe. Seismic Press, 2022. [publisher site & interviews] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Her art school future requires ceramics mastery – will she SLIP? by Marika McCoola & Aatmahja Pandya (Graphic novel review)

book cover of Slip / words by Marika McCoola, art by Aatmaja Pandya. Published by Algonquin Young Readers

Jade is attending an intensive art camp to develop her ceramics skills and prepare her art school application portfolio.

But the high schooler is worried beyond words that her best friend Phoebe just went into treatment for attempted suicide – how can she try to make new friends?

Jade’s technique with clay is good, but where’s the inspiration? Everyone else at Art Camp is so much better prepared…

One night, she crumples up yet another not-good-enough sketch and sets a match to it – there in the smoke her memories with Phoebe appear like a movie!

Mary tries to help Jade find inspiration in the woods, the art book library, the hardware store in the nearby tiny town, in being together…

When Jade’s ceramic angry cat comes out of the kiln and runs away, she’s not sure what’s happening!

Getting a scholarship for art college requires a strong portfolio, and Jade’s days at Art Camp are growing short.

How can Jade support her best friend when Phoebe doesn’t want to talk to anyone?
How can she and Mary have wonderful moments together while Jade is struggling?
How can the images in smoke and moving ceramic cat exist?

Pressure to succeed, to love and be loved, to respect others’ artworks – Jade doesn’t want to fail.

When have you searched for inspiration and found it?
**kmm

Book info: Slip / words by Marika McCoola, art by Aatmaja Pandya. Algonquin Young Readers, 2022. [author site] [artist site] [book site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Neighbors at war, peril under THE WEIGHT OF OUR SKY, by Hanna Alkaf (YA book review)

book cover of The Weight of Our Sky, by Hanna Alkaf. Published by Salaam Reads | recommended on BooksYALove.com

Underdogs win in an election,
Status quo pushes back –
Deadly fighting in the streets!

The small good-luck counting actions of childhood became full-blown obsession when her father died. Now 16-year-old Melati protects her mother through counting rituals as the djinn within her shows gruesome images of how Mama will die if the teen doesn’t do them perfectly (always in threes, always).

These days, in 1969 Malaysia, she and best friend Saf love new music, enjoy the street food in their Malay neighborhood, come home when the sunset call to prayer sounds. They’re at the movies when fighting about the recent election turns violent with Chinese and Muslims and Indians attacking each other’s communities – run, run home!

Improbably rescued by a Chinese auntie, Melati is panicked at Mama not knowing where she is, at leaving Saf behind, at being with Chinese people she’s always been warned not to trust…

The djinn inside Melati reproaches her constantly, Auntie Bee’s two college sons Frankie and Vincent argue about who started the fighting, and Uncle arrives home after seeing fires all over Kuala Lumpur.

Oh, 24-hour curfew! Rioters are burning everything, and soon Auntie Bee’s house is packed with her neighbor of all faiths – how long will the food last?

Frankie is eager to fight against the Malays; Vince loves music and understands a little about how it helps Melati drown out the djinn’s terrible words.

Is there any way to get back to Melati’s mom? Wherever she and Vince travel on his motorbike, one of them will be the outsider and in danger!

Malay, Chinese, and Indian groups all worked together to declare independence from Britain 12 years ago – why can’t they govern together now?

In Melati’s time, mental illnesses like OCD were ignored, not treated, so she is doing the best that she can during unbearable stress.

The debut novel by the author of Queen of the Tiles (recommended here).
**kmm

Book info: The Weight of Our Sky / Hanna Alkaf. Salaam Reads / Simon & Schuster, hardcover 2019, paperback, 2021. [author site] [publisher site] Personal copy; cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Find the escaped soul or be GROUNDED FOR ALL ETERNITY!? by Darcy Marks (YA book review)

book cover of Grounded For All Eternity, by Darcy Marks. Published by Aladdin | recommended on BooksYALove.com

During lockdown because a prisoner escaped from the Pit, Malachi and his squad are bored, so the teens sneak to the woods near their neighborhood in Hell and find an opening to another world. Of course, the veil is thinnest on All Hallow’s Eve… do they dare?

Mal gets pushed through to Salem, Massachusetts, without his black feathered wings! Will his friends use the skills they’re learning as future infernal law enforcement to locate him?

The humans here have auras – blue for heaven-bound, red for Hell, gray for undetermined – interesting…

Aghh! A seraph from Heaven arrives – are they in competition for a human with a gray aura?

Gotta get home before the veil closes, but the gate to Hell requires that all who entered return in a group… who is missing? The escaped prisoner Parris?!

The townspeople begin acting dangerously, pushed by manipulator Parris as he did during the Witch Trials.

As midnight approaches, Mal and friends reluctantly enlist the help of a teen boy with psychic abilities – they must capture Parris before the veil closes!

The seraph wants to call down avenging angels to wipe out the problem…

Can Mal, Crowley, and Lilith get back home to Hell?
Will Mal tell his parents that he doesn’t want to train for the job assigned by Fate?
They’ll be grounded forever, right?

The balance of the universe is at stake here!
Paperback edition available today – 13 June 2023.

Ever been to Salem?
**kmm

Book info: Grounded For All Eternity / Darcy Marks. Aladdin, hardcover 2022, paperback 2023. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Who survives the dangerous waters? Adventurous tales to read with your ears! (audiobook recommendations)

Deep dives, perilous seas, and wild water in this week’s free AudioSYNC audiobooks

Download either or both audiobooks into your Sora shelf by Wednesday 14 June 2023, then listen to them whenever you like, as long as you keep them on your Sora shelf.

You can sign up for a free Sora account and see the entire AudioSYNC season here.

Time to set sail, weigh anchor, brave the briny deeps!

CD cover of Fractured Tide, by Leslie Lutz | Read by Chloe Dolandis.
Published by Blink

Fractured Tide (free Sora download 6/8-6/14/23)
by Leslie Lutz | Read by Chloe Dolandis
Published by Blink

Expert diver Sia is one of the few survivors when their charter boat exploring a local shipwreck is destroyed by a monstrous creature!

The teen’s dictated letters to her incarcerated father note their efforts to get off the island… if she can.

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/184815/fractured-tide-by-leslie-lutz-read-by-chloe-dolandis/

clipart swirling lines http://www.clipartpanda.com/clipart_images/mondays-throughout-the-day-17164159
CD cover of Hurricane Song: a Novel of New Orleans, by Paul Volponi | Read by Jacob Norman. Published by Brilliance Audio

Hurricane Song: a Novel of New Orleans (free Sora download 6/8-6/14/23)
by Paul Volponi | Read by Jacob Norman
Published by Brilliance Audio

Katrina forces high schooler Miles, his dad, and his uncle to take shelter in the Superdome.

As food and medical supplies dwindle, violence and danger grow – will they make it through this hurricane?

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/44047/hurricane-song-by-paul-volponi-read-by-jacob-norman/

What’s your relationship to weather and the sea?
**kmm

divider clipart http://www.clipartpanda.com/clipart_images/mondays-throughout-the-day-17164159

I’m determined, strong, anxious – DON’T CALL ME A HURRICANE, by Ellen Hagan (YA book review)

book cover of Don't Call Me a Hurricane, by Ellen Hagan. Published by Bloomsbury | recommended on BooksYALove.com

Five years since the hurricane,
end of childhood bliss,
more changes ahead…

Eliza’s Italian-American family rebuilt shore-side, but most year-rounders on their New Jersey island sold to developers and moved inland.

Summer before their senior year, Eliza and best friend Isa are lifeguards watching over families and surfers, worrying about the nature preserve being sold, doing what they can as climate activists (maybe going a little too far sometimes).

She usually steers clear of the summer people, but grudgingly agrees to teach city boy Milo how to surf since he’ll be here with dad and stepmom all summer.

Her therapist is trying to help the 17 year old unravel her anxiety about hurricane season, to quiet the litany of climate disaster that keeps Eliza up all night.

Milo wants to help the climate justice group – is he sincere or just trying to get closer to Eliza?

What can they do to save the nature preserve from developers with money, money, money?

Flashbacks to the hurricane’s wrath punctuate this stunning novel-in-verse examining changes and challenges.

How has climate change affected your community?
**kmm

Book info: Don’t Call Me a Hurricane / Ellen Hagan. Bloomsbury, 2022. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

CODEX BLACK: A FIRE AMONG CLOUDS – adventure, danger, evil arising! by Camilo Moncada Lozano (Graphic novel review)

book cover of Codex Black: A Fire Among Clouds, by Camilo Moncada Lozano; colored by Michi Desantiago. IDW Publishing| recommended on BooksYALove.com

Now he can use his crow powers!
Now she can search for her father!
Now they are hunted by thieves and gods!

A new alliance of three city-states seeks to conquer all of Mesoamerica in the 1400s, as does an evil being conjured from the depths of darkness!

At age 15, stubborn Donaji leaves their Zapotec village to find her father who vanished on a trading journey years ago. Her poncho is the earthly abode of Chicahualizteotl, god of Fortitude, adding to her bravery.

Rookie warrior from Mexica, 17-year-old Itzcacalotl is separated from the Alliance expedition, follows crows to a high place, falls into a pit, and emerges days later wearing crows’ wings!

When their paths cross, the teens decide to travel together to the city where her father was last seen, before trying to reconnect with Itzcacalotl’s expedition.

Attacked by vicious gods on the trail! Few clues about her father in the city. A thief steals Donaji’s poncho!

But daring Citlamina wants more than some textiles – the 19-year-old seeks the Mexica caravan’s riches and a dark, dark secret place.

Can Donaji and Itzcacalotl continue searching for her father?
Are the gods on their side?
Will Citlamina truly unleash a great evil to break the world?

This graphic novel is an exciting journey with humans and gods trying to keep the young people from their goal!

What do you know of Mesoamerican legend and history?
**kmm

Book info: Codex Black: A Fire Among Clouds / Camilo Moncada Lozano; colored by Michi Desantiago. IDW Publishing, 2023. [author interview] [distributing publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Starting over, needing to change, reinventing oneself – stories shared by AudioSYNC (audiobook recommendations)

This week’s AudioSYNC free audiobooks take us on journeys of self-discovery.

Remember to download either or both audiobooks into your Sora shelf by Wednesday 7 June 2023. All your AudioSYNC downloads are yours to read for 99 years, as long as you keep them on your Sora shelf.

You can sign up for a free Sora account and see the entire AudioSYNC season here.

How much will our characters change as their stories travel on?

CD cover of Poor Matza: Selected Stories of Avrom Reisen; by Avrom Reisen, Harvey Fink [Trans.] | Read by David Skulski. Published by Post Hypnotic Press

Poor Matza: Selected Stories of Avrom Reisen (free Sora download 6/1-6/7/23)
by Avrom Reisen, Harvey Fink [Trans.] | Read by David Skulski
Published by Post Hypnotic Press

Yiddish tales of shtetl life in Eastern Europe and the immigrant experience in pre-WWII New York City – 38 tales in a new English translation.

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/80962/poor-matza-by-avrom-reisen-harvey-fink-trans-read-by-david-skulski/

clipart of swirly lines http://www.clipartpanda.com/clipart_images/mondays-throughout-the-day-17164159
CD cover of The Truth About White Lies, by Olivia A Cole | Read by Mela Lee. Published by Hachette Audio

The Truth About White Lies (free Sora download 6/1-6/7/23)
by Olivia A Cole | Read by Mela Lee
Published by Hachette Audio

Fitting in at a new school is difficult, especially when unconscious biases divide and judge.

Can Shania accept how white privilege got her here without repeating its worst errors?

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/213614/the-truth-about-white-lies-by-olivia-a-cole-read-by-mela-lee/

How has an emotional or travel journey changed your sense of self?
**kmm

divider clipart http://www.clipartpanda.com/clipart_images/mondays-throughout-the-day-17164159

WHEN THE ANGELS LEFT THE OLD COUNTRY, following the faithful, by Sacha Lamb (YA book review)

book cover of When the Angels Left the Old Country, by Sasha Lamb. Published by Levine Querido | recommended on BooksYALove.com

Studying the Talmud with an angel should keep the demon too busy to make trouble in the nameless tiny Polish village, but Little Ash manages to hear all the gossip. Many Jews have left for America, but still no word from Essie, the baker’s daughter.

In the town of Belz, 16-year-old Rose now runs the dry goods store for her distractable father, hiring lovely best friend Dinah as clerk. They’ll keep their families afloat and save enough to go to America! Dinah has not noticed that Rose is as fond of her as the young Torah scholar visiting the store is.

The villagers assume that Little Ash and the angel are young men, glad that the pair can go to Warsaw where Essie was last heard from. Oh, that emigration agent is a scoundrel, cheating so many, even killing some, like that rebbe from Belz! Little Ash will make very sure that the agent harms no one else, ever.

And so it is that they are on the steamship dock with Rose, whose year-long plan was smashed when Dinah announced her engagement. The trio watch each other’s belongings in the crowded steerage deck and pray that all aboard stay healthy enough to pass inspection at Ellis Island.

The angel carried along the rebbe’s books, hoping to bring them to his daughter. The murdered rebbe appears to the angel, saying that they must have kaddish sung for him at the earliest moment possible, lest his spirit wander forever!

Rose longs to meet kind-eyed Essie whose photo was in the letters stolen by that evil agent.

And so it was that the three friends became separated at the immigration station, as the angel was passed first because those letters showed a relative’s address.

Can the angel get Little Ash and Rose released from Ellis Island?
Can they find Essie and save her from the ‘shop boss’?
What place will they carve out for themselves in this new world?

Obligation and challenges, friendship and love – those who tried and dared, may their memory be a blessing.

What stories of arriving in new places do you tell?
**kmm

Book info: When the Angels Left the Old Country / Sacha Lamb. Levine Querido, 2022. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.