Beth’s June Suggestions

nimona cover

Nimona – Noelle Stevenson

The graphic novel debut from rising star Noelle Stevenson, based on her beloved and critically acclaimed web comic, which Slate awarded its Cartoonist Studio Prize, calling it “a deadpan epic.”

Nemeses! Dragons! Science! Symbolism! All these and more await in this subversive, irreverent epic. Featuring an exclusive epilogue not seen in the web comic, along with bonus conceptual sketches and revised pages throughout.
ember in the ashes cover

An Ember in the Ashes – Sabaa Tahir

“[An Ember in the Ashes] thrusts its readers into a world marred by violence and oppression, yet does so with simple prose that can offer moments of loveliness in its clarity. This complexity makes Ember a worthy novel—and one as brave as its characters.” – The New York Times Book Review


mosquitoland coverMosquitoland – David Arnold

“Arnold proves his worth as a top-notch storyteller on his first literary go-round, which is reminiscent of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off if done by John Hughes with Jack Kerouac. . . Mosquitoland stings in all the right places, which is why it will no doubt be many teenagers’ new favorite book and win over the crustiest old-timer, too.” – USA Today

Spotlight On: YA for Adults

By now, everyone has heard of John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars. We’ve noticed that many adults have read this novel, even though it is labeled as “YA (Young Adult)”. We at RFPL think that’s great! There are some amazing reads in YA that adults will also find appealing. We did a spotlight on this same topic last year, and you can see those picks here. Here are some more picks- happy reading!

Panic by Lauren Oliver

panicHeather never thought she would compete in Panic, a legendary game played by graduating seniors, where the stakes are high and the payoff is even higher. She’d never thought of herself as fearless, the kind of person who would fight to stand out. But when she finds something, and someone, to fight for, she will discover that she is braver than she ever thought.

Dodge has never been afraid of Panic. His secret will fuel him, and get him all the way through the game; he’s sure of it. But what he doesn’t know is that he’s not the only one with a secret. Everyone has something to play for.

For Heather and Dodge, the game will bring new alliances, unexpected revelations, and the possibility of first love for each of them—and the knowledge that sometimes the very things we fear are those we need the most.

Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith

grasshopperjungleSixteen-year-old Austin Szerba interweaves the story of his Polish legacy with the story of how he and his best friend , Robby, brought about the end of humanity and the rise of an army of unstoppable, six-foot tall praying mantises in small-town Iowa.

To make matters worse, Austin’s hormones are totally oblivious; they don’t care that the world is in utter chaos: Austin is in love with his girlfriend, Shann, but remains confused about his sexual orientation. He’s stewing in a self-professed constant state of maximum horniness, directed at both Robby and Shann. Ultimately, it’s up to Austin to save the world and propagate the species in this sci-fright journey of survival, sex, and the complex realities of the human condition.

If I Stay by Gayle Forman

This book has been adapted to film and will be released to theaters on August 22. Watch the trailer here.

if i stayIn a single moment, everything changes. Seventeen year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall riding along the snow-wet Oregon road with her family. Then, in a blink, she finds herself watching as her own damaged body is taken from the wreck…

A sophisticated, layered, and heartachingly beautiful story about the power of family and friends, the choices we all make–and the ultimate choice Mia commands.

  • 2010 Nominated SCASL Book Award (South Carolina)
  • 2010 Nominated Black-Eyed Susan Book Award
  • 2011 Nominated Volunteer State Book Award
  • 2010 Won Great Lakes’ Great Books Award
  • 2012 Nominated Evergreen Young Adult Book Award
  • 2010 Nominated Virginia Reader’s Choice Awards

Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell

eleanor and parkThis book is a staff favorite among many here at RFPL. The rights for the movie version were recently purchased, so stay tuned for more news on this. Rainbow Rowell writes both YA and adult novels. Her new adult novel was released this month, Landlines.

Eleanor and Park is set over the course of one school year in 1986. It is the love story between two misfits. Many readers will enjoy the references to music and comic books from the 80s. A hesistant relationship forms on a shared bus seat between the two – slowly reading comics over each other’s shoulders, and sharing earbuds to listen to music together. A tender teenage love story that many will relate to. The audio book version is very well narrated and was nominated for an Audie award.

  • 2013 Won Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards
  • 2013 Won Publishers Weekly Best Children’s Books
  • 2014 Nominated Audie Award


The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong

summoningAfter fifteen-year-old Chloe starts seeing ghosts and is sent to Lyle House, a mysterious group home for mentally disturbed teenagers, she soon discovers that neither Lyle House nor its inhabitants are exactly what they seem, and that she and her new friends are in danger.

Genna notes: I have had several parents come in to tell me that they have read and enjoyed this series, and their teenaged daughters have also read it. I think this is a great pick for Adult/YA crossover. Kelley Armstrong writes both for adult and YA audiences. Check out her book lists here.

Guy In Real Life by Steve Brezenoff

guyinreallifeThe lives of two Minnesota teenagers are intertwined through the world of role playing games. It is Labor Day weekend in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and boy and girl collide on a dark street at two thirty in the morning: Lesh, who wears black, listens to metal, and plays MMOs; Svetlana, who embroiders her skirts, listens to Björk and Berlioz, and dungeon masters her own RPG. They should pick themselves up, continue on their way, and never talk to each other again. But they don’t. This is a story of the roles we all play, at school, at home, online, and with our friends, and the one person who might be able to show us who we are underneath it all. – summary from catalog

Noggin by John Corey Whaley


Travis Coates has a good head…on someone else’s shoulders. A touching, hilarious, and wholly original coming-of-age story from John Corey Whaley, author of the Printz and Morris Award-winning Where Things Come Back.

After dying at age sixteen, Travis Coates’ head was removed and frozen for five years before being attached to another body, and now the old Travis and the new must find a way to coexist while figuring out changes in his relationships. -summary from catalog

Ask The Passengers by A.S. King

askpassengers“Astrid Jones copes with her small town’s gossip and narrow-mindedness by staring at the sky and imagining that she’s sending love to the passengers in the airplanes flying high over her backyard. There’s no one Astrid feels she can talk to about this deep secret or the profound questions that she’s trying to answer. But little does she know just how much sending her love–and asking the right questions–will affect the passengers’ lives, and her own, for the better.” – from library catalog

  • 2012 Won School Library Journal Best Books of the Year
  • 2012 Won Los Angeles Times Book Prizes
  • 2012 Won Publishers Weekly Best Children’s Books
  • 2013 Won Carolyn W. Field Award (Pennsylvania Library Association)
  • 2013 Won Los Angeles Times Book Prizes

Do you need more ideas? Here are some links to recent articles with YA picks:

95 Books To Read This Summer –

25 Novels Everyone – Including Adults Should Read –

The 15 Most Exciting YA Books Coming Out This Year – Teen Vogue