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young adult romance

Staff Picks: “My Life Next Door” by Huntley Fitzpatrick

When I first read advance reviews and the synopsis of My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick, I immediately requested the library order it. The novel sounded perfect for summer reading. A little romance, a little mystery…what more could you want for a poolside read?

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Teen Picks: “The Summer of Skinny Dipping” by Amanda Howells

The Summer of Skinny Dipping by Amanda Howells

What is it about?
Mia Gordon cannot wait to start her summer. Because Summer means going to the Hamptons to visit her cousins for the first time in years. Summer means relaxing on the beach and enjoying her family and being back at her favorite beach house, Wind Song. Most of all she can’t wait to catch up with her cousin Corinne and forget all about her recent breakup. But Corinne has changed. Read More..

Staff Picks: “If I Stay” by Gayle Forman

“If you stay, I’ll do whatever you want. I’ll quit the band, go with you to New York. But if you need me to go away, I’ll do that, too. I was talking to Liz and she said maybe coming back to your old life would be too painful, that maybe it’d be easier for you to erase us. And that would suck, but I’d do it. I can lose you like that if I don’t lose you today. I’ll let you go. If you stay.”

Mia begins a normal day in the Hall household, happy that school’s been called off for snow though the weather won’t prevent them from going on a family outing–only they never make it to their intended destination. Mia’s parents and younger brother are killed in a car accident that leaves her in a coma. The story unfolds as Mia decides whether or not to stay or go.

If I Stay is a YA novel with heart. Some YA fiction can come across as condescending or trite, preachy or unrealistic, but this one is well-written but approachable and a tear-jerker without being sad simply for the sake of it. Though I was initially skeptical about a story narrated by a girl in a coma, I was completely able to suspend belief and be right there with Mia, watching her friends and family grieve.   Read More..