Wintergirls, by Laurie Halse Anderson (278 pages) – Lia’s best friend Cassie has died from anorexia, and now Lia faces the same fate. ‘One girl’s chilling descent into the all-consuming vortex of anorexia.’
First sentence: ‘So she tells me, the words dribbling out with the cranberry muffin crumbs, commas dunked in her coffee.’
Because I am Furniture, by Thalia Chaltas (352 pages) – Anke’s father is abusive, though only to her sister and brother. She gradually learns that she can be heard when she joins the volleyball team. Written in poems.
First sentence: ‘I am always there.‘
Hero Type, by Barry Lyga (295 pages) – Kevin heroically (though accidently) saves someone’s life, and during the unwanted publicity he is photographed being ‘unpatriotic’.
First sentence: ‘ Everywhere you go, it seems like there’s a reminder of what happened, of what I did.‘
Diary of a Chav: Keeping it Real, by Grace Dent (233 pages) – This is the fourth book in the ‘Diary of a Chav’ series.
The Ant Colony, by Jenny Valentine (215 pages) – from the author of Finding Violet Park. The Ant Colony in question is 33 Georgiana Street in London, a house populated by a disparate bunch of people who seem to get on with their lives without disturbing others, but it doesn’t take much to stir the pot.
First sentence: I saw a girl.
The Bone Tiki, by David Hair (303 pages) – Matiu steals a bone tiki from a tangi (which you think would be a bad place to start). Soon he’s running for his life, in reality and in a world where myths and legends are real and terrifying.
First sentence: ‘Dear Mum, I hope you are OK, and liking it in Taupo.’
Inside Girl: All That Glitters, by J. Minter (229 pages). The series that won our Selector vote-off earlier this year. Flan’s been ’slumming it’ at a downtown school. When she’s back in her uptown neighbourhood she finds the experience has changed her, and tensions run high.
First sentence: ‘Repeat after me,’ SBB said.
Take a Chance on Me (Gossip Girl: The Carlyles), by Annabelle Vestry (240 pages) – the third in the series, and it looks like the triplets’ love lives need sorting out, which will be well documented by the gossip girl, no doubt. The book begins with a quote from Hamlet.
First sentence (from the non-GG bit (which was waaay too long for me)): ‘Ow!’ Owen Carlyle grunted as a bagel hit him hard, square in the center of his broad shoulders.
Extreme Kissing, by Luisa Plaja (327 pages) – Bethany and Carlota go on a crazy life-changing adventure in London using their favourite magazine as a guide. Kissing is involved, among other things.
First sentence: Are you stressed to the max?
Fire Song, by Libby Hathorn (141 pages) – Ingrid’s family has imploded, and when her mother asks her to do something she knows is wrong, Ingrid finds herself isolated, trying to help her mother and stick to her principles.
First sentence: From the back verandah, Ingrid Crowe watched her dog Blackie chase a stray bird across the garden.
Changeling, by Steve Feasey (266 pages) – the book finishes with a rather menacing “to be continued”. Trey is about to discover – if the back cover is anything to go by – that his friend Lucien is a vampire and he himself is a werewolf.
First sentence: Trey Laporte opened his eyes, wincing against the assault of the late-morning sunshine on his retinas.
One-Way Ticket, by Iona McNaughton (198 pages) - Meg’s happy in Toronto, but when her grandparents send one way tickets to New Zealand for her and her father she finds herself having to adjust to a new country, new school… and a new woman in her father’s life.
First sentence: It’s the same every year.
Also in: a new copy of Nicola and the Viscount, by Meg Cabot, first published in 2002.