Staff Picks by Tag

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Vinyl Moon By Mahogany L. Browne Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780593176467
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Ember - June 6th, 2023

From Cali to Brooklyn, Angel has her new classmates, her Uncle Spence, and her music playlists to help heal her broken arm and her spirit from her troubled past. We also see her make a home within the words of Toni Morrison, Tayari Jones, and James Baldwin, discovering Black authors through the guidance of her teachers. Browne's novel shines as a beautiful balance between the light and dark sides of being a teenager. 


Review by Emily

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All My Rage: A Novel By Sabaa Tahir Cover Image
$12.99
ISBN: 9780593202364
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Razorbill - March 7th, 2023

This beautifully crafted, inter-generational story follows two childhood friends during their final year of high school in a small Mojave desert town. I was instantly drawn into the lives of Salahudin and Noor as they navigate grief, the unpredictability of their parental figures, racism, isolating secrets and fears. Told in alternating perspectives, you cannot help but rage against all the obstacles they face. Sabaa Tahir tells their story so eloquently, you will not be able to put it down and it will stay with you long after you’ve read the final page.


Review by Rene

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A Forgery of Roses By Jessica S. Olson Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781335429193
Availability: Out of stock, usually available in 3-10 days
Published: Inkyard Press - April 11th, 2023

A moody and atmospheric murder mystery with a unique setting and magic system. This book does a great job representing anxiety and chronic illness without making them hurdles for the characters to overcome.


Review by Sarah B.

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Hunted by the Sky (The Wrath of Ambar #1) By Tanaz Bhathena Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9781250792037
Availability: Out of stock, usually available in 3-10 days
Published: Square Fish - May 25th, 2021

This medieval India-inspired tale is full of mythology, goddesses and magic. A prophecy has destroyed everything in Gul's life, now she'll stop at nothing to avenge her family. Cavas wants nothing more than to care for his sick father, but a mysterious girl threatens to upend all his plans. As their lives intertwine, the fate of their kingdom is thrown into chaos.


Review by Sarah B.

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Home Is Not a Country By Safia Elhillo Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780593177082
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Make Me a World - February 22nd, 2022

I wish this book was there for me when I was Nima’s age. Powerful themes, beautiful use of language, and an overwhelming sense of warmth made me cry happy tears by the novel’s end. One of the most uplifting books I’ve read this year. 


Review by Lily

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A Lesson in Vengeance By Victoria Lee Cover Image
$18.99
Unavailable at this time.
ISBN: 9780593305829
Published: Delacorte Press - August 3rd, 2021

Think of this book as The Secret History meets The Craft, coming together to make one epic and spooky young adult novel. It takes place at an all-girls boarding school, where a twisted history of dark magic blankets its prestigious reputation. We follow the life of Felicity Morrow, an ex-witch who is trying to navigate through the death of her girlfriend. After a year of being away from school due to her grief, she comes back ready to graduate highschool, but finds herself living in the same room she was in during her darkest years. She then realizes that history, no matter how awful it is, indeed repeats itself. It is a must read for anyone who loves gothic thrillers. 


Review by Javi

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For All Time By Shanna Miles Cover Image
$19.99
Unavailable at this time.
ISBN: 9781534485976
Published: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers - September 28th, 2021

WOW! This blew my mind. This story is so unexpected, I literally didn't know what was going to happen until it did. If you crave conceptual time travel narratives along the lines of This is How You Lose the Time War, please, please, read For All Time.
Tamar and Fayard suddenly begin having strange dreams and visions, set in different centuries and places. It's as if they spent other lives meeting and falling in love, as if their souls seek each other in every era and continent. But it couldn't possibly be real because Tamar is really sick and Fayard should be figuring out college. 

There's so much to this story and I wish I could tell you more, but then I'd spoil it for you.



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Chlorine Sky By Mahogany L. Browne Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780593176429
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Ember - February 7th, 2023

I'm a sucker for a novel in verse! For fans of Elizabeth Acevedo and Jacqueline Woodson, Mahogany L. Browne writes the story of a teenage girl just trying to play basketball without getting too cold in her best friend's shadow. Her words bite but her voice is delicate, letting me relish in that dichotomy of girlhood. Chlorine Sky feels like the chemicals from the community pool and the sun setting orange, your fingers are pruny but it's just so beautiful. Five more minutes


Review by Emily

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Brown Girl Dreaming By Jacqueline Woodson Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9780147515827
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Nancy Paulsen Books - October 11th, 2016

A perfect example of a book for children and adults alike; give this to everyone you know! Woodson writes in verse, beautifully combining prose and poetry, to tell the autobiographical story of a brown girl coming of age at the tailend of Jim Crow. She grapples with identity and the idea of home, growing up in South Carolina and New York, while still trying to be a kid with dreams of becoming a writer. It's powerful, it's beautiful, it's no wonder it was a Newbery Award nominee.


Review by Emily

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Miss Meteor By Tehlor Kay Mejia, Anna-Marie McLemore Cover Image
$17.99
Unavailable at this time.
ISBN: 9780062869913
Published: HarperTeen - September 22nd, 2020

This book has so much heart. The magical realism element adds depth and creates a complex, yet fresh, metaphor with the word "alien". The story is a classic high school makeover-and-revenge plot. What sets it apart from other #ownvoices YA is the pansexual lead character, the trans love interest, the otherworldly best friend, and many unique small town dramatics. Think Miss Congeniality: the New Mexico high school Latinx edition.
 



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