Crocodile Tears, Anthony Horowitz (385 pages) – Alex is recruited for a seemingly simple mission - download some data from a computer in a plant engineering lab while on a school mission – but of course in the world of espionage things are never simple. We’re thinking that a normal school life just isn’t going to happen for poor old Alex.
First sentence: Ravi Chandra was going to be a rich man.
Claim to Fame, Margaret Peterson Haddix (256 pages) – Lindsay is a former child star who suffered a breakdown at age 11, partly because she can hear everything anyone says about her around the world. That’d be tough. Now she is 16, and trying to learn how to cope with her talent in a new, isolated place, when a group of teenagers “rescue” (kidnap) her and force her to confront her situation.
First sentence: I was supposed to be doing my algebra homework that night.
Chasing Brooklyn, Lisa Schroeder (412 pages) – a novel in verse. Nico and Brooklyn are haunted by the ghosts of their dead brother/boyfriend and Brooklyn’s best friend Gabe, but neither can admit it to the other.
First sentence: I lost my boyfriend, Lucca.
Same Difference, Siobhan Vivian (287 pages) – “Emily’s life reeks of the ordinary: she lives in suburban New Jersey in a posh gated community and hangs out at Starbucks with her friends in a town where most of the buildings are old, and if they’re not, they’re eventually made to look that way. When Emily heads to Philadelphia for a summer art institute—complete with an eclectic cast of funky classmates and one dreamy teaching assistant—she faces the classic teen dilemma of whether to choose the familiar over the new and exciting, while figuring out who she really is: Emily from Cherry Grove or Emily the aspiring artist?” (Amazon.com)
First sentence: When I was a kid, I drew clouds that looked like bodies of cartoon sheep.
By the Time You Read This, I’ll Be Dead, Julie Anne Peters (200 pages) – A story about “how bullying can push young people to the very edge.” (Book Cover)
First sentence: The white boy, the skinny, tall boy with shocking white hair, sneaks behind the stone bench and leans against the tree trunk.
Eyes Like Stars, Lisa Mantchev (Theatre Illuminata, Act I: 356 pages) – This looks interesting and mighty hard to explain! So I shall quote Suzanne Collins (out from underneath the barcode): “All the world’s truly a stage in Lisa Mantchev’s innovative tale, Eyes Like Stars. Magical stagecraft, unmanageable fairies, and a humourous cast of classical characters form the backdrop for this imaginative coming-of-age.”
First sentence: The fairies flew suspended on wires despite their tendency to get tangled together.
Jonas, Eden Maguire (Beautiful Dead Book 1, 271 pages) – Jonas, Arizona, Summer and Phoenix have all mysteriously died at Ellerton High in one year. This is the story of Jonas’ death, the unanswered questions, and Darina, who has visions of Phoenix, her dead boyfriend, and the others. What are the visions, and who are the beautiful dead?
First sentence: The first thing I heard was a door banging in the wind.
Freefall, Ariela Anhalt (247 pages) – Something bad happened on the cliff one night and the police want to know. Hayden may be up for murder, and his friend Luke is the only witness. Luke must come to terms with what happened and what that means for his friendship.
First sentence: Luke Prescott stood at the top of the cliff, his toes curled over the edge and pointing downward.
The Miles Between, Mary E Pearson (265 pages) – Destiny and three of her friends hit the road in a story that “explores the absurdities of life, friendship, and fate – and also the moments of grace and wonder.” (Book cover)
First sentence: I was seven the first time I was sent away.
Bleeding Violet, Dia Reeves (454 pages) – Hanna, who suffers from bipolar disorder, moves to the town of Portero in Texas, where she meets up with Wyatt, a member of a demon-hunting organisation. Meanwhile, an ancient evil threatens the town…
First sentence: The truck driver let me off on Lamartine, on the odd side of the street.