Everyone drives a truck and wears muddy boots, talks slow and walks even slower – today’s teens outside big cities go way beyond those tired old ideas.
An aspiring rodeo queen in Utah draws strength from her Puerto Rican roots.
A Michigan queer girl’s 4-H showmanship in swine competition might draw her crush closer.
Forced up a tree by an angry bull, best friends finally talk about whether Alina’s stories identify with her home state or strive to distance her from West Virginia.
This collection of viewpoints and vistas includes stories by David Bowles, Joseph Bruchac, Veeda Bybee, Nora Shalaway Carpenter, Shae Carys, S. A. Cosby, Rob Costello, Randy DuBurke, David Macinnis Gill, Nasugraq Rainey Hopson, Estelle Laure, Yamile Saied Méndez, Ashley Hope Pérez, Tirzah Price, and Monica Roe.
I live outside a very small town where FFA and AP classes are on the same schedule, and young people can pursue big dreams with or without moving to the big city.
What rural voices have you heard lately? **kmm
Book Info: Rural Voices: 15 Authors Challenge Assumptions About Small-Town America / Nora Shalway Carpenter, ed. Candlewick Press, 2020. [editor interview] [publisher site]
Moved reluctantly from California to Utah, shutting his expanded heart back into the closet. Just one year till graduation and escape from the land of Mormon like Mom did, until he meets the right guy….
Drafting a novel during a single high school semester can’t be impossible, right? After all, Sebastian did it last year and sold his book!!
Not so simple, Tanner and best friend Amber discover, even when Sebastian pops in from BYU to mentor their class.
Tanner’s story begins to revolve around a just-older literary adviser who just happens to look like Sebastian and be adorable and perhaps not out of the bisexual teen’s reach.
Easy enough for Sebastian to read between the lines of Tanner’s manuscript, not so easy for him to react to Tanner’s feelings, but he does!
Four months until Tanner’s final draft is due, four months till Sebastian leaves on book tour then his two-year LDS mission.
Four months is long enough to draft a novel, but not long enough to change an entire culture, and Sebastian is so torn.
Religion, love… when do you know what’s right, what’s best for you? **kmm
Book info: Autoboyography / Christina Lauren (Lauren Billings & Christina Hobbs). Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, hardcover 2017, paperback 2018. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
Book info: Cure for the Common Universe / Christian McKay Heidicker. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, hardcover 2016, paperback 2017. [author site] [publisher site] [author video] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My book talk: Banished to a rehab center for videogame addicts, 16 year old Jaxon is desperate to escape in time for his first-ever date with a girl in the real world, but earning his way out could involve actually talking about being abandoned by Mom – no other way to level up?!
Not his fault that his parents divorced when he was just 8 or that his mom’s addictions always make her forget he’s coming to visit or that he is escaping from his stepmother’s perfectionism by living in the videogames that he so loved playing with Mom…
Hustled away to the desert rehab center, Jaxon meets teens who truly are videogame addicts (he isn’t, just likes playing them 60 hours a week in summer) and tries to figure out how he can get back to Salt Lake City in just four days so he can meet Serena (no cellphone, no FaceBook) for their date (first date, first girl who laughed with him instead of at him).
Doing chores earns points, doing dumb stuff loses points for you and your guild (yep, using different names and being in guilds is not like gaming at all – ha!).
Earn enough points, and you can go home from v-hab (again, not at all like gaming – ha!)
But no one in the whole two-month history of Horizons has earned their way out in just 4 days – and that’s what Jaxon has to do, if he wants to see Serena… (was any gaming reward worth this much??)
Soup, Aurora, Meeki, Zxzord, and Fezzik want to help their guildmate get to that golden date with Serena, but he’ll have to see beyond his own limitations first.
Stepdad knew their late father?
Business trips were really what!?
Is that black SUV still following us?
When Claire discovers that her long-dead father was part of a Japanese organized crime gang, her whole world begins shaking – and here come the bad guys who want to make sure that the Utah teen goes under for good!
Family secrets – key to one’s own history or ticking time-bomb?
Book info: Ink and Ashes / Valynne E. Maetani. Tu Books, 2015. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My book talk: Claire’s search for answers on the tenth anniversary of her father’s death inadvertently alerts the yakuza to her family’s location – and the race for survival is on!
The Japanese-American teen can’t believe that her stepfather knew her father and never told her, that a simple phone call could unleash a horde of bad guys intent on wiping out her family, that best buddy Forrest could think of her as more than a friend…
The letters that Claire wrote to Otochan in the years after his death appear throughout the book, as the straight-A student weathers accusations of cheating at school, uncovers many strange things about her late father, and must rely on her group of guy-friends more than ever when objects symbolizing death start arriving at her Utah home.
Why would Mom lie about her father’s past?
Why does the Japanese crime gang care about her family after all this time?
Can she stay alive long enough to figure out Forrest?
Action, intrigue, friendship, love, and revenge – watch out for black SUV following you! (One of 6,000 books recommended on www.abookandahug.com)
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