Chosen by Year 9 (13-14 year old) pupils from King Edward VI School, Bury St Edmunds.
Love and Other Four Letter Words
Carolyn Mackler, Walker, 0 7445 9008 6, £4.99 pbk
This is an American novel about a teenage girl whose parents split up and she moves from the suburbs to live in a small flat in New York with her mother. During the summer she struggles to make friends and deal with her feelings about her parents. By the end of the story she is finding new love with an artist. The best thing about the book is that it is true to life. A teenage girl can really relate to some of the problems of the main characters. The story makes you cry and laugh. I had a lot of fun reading the book and recommend it to others. The author is a fantastic writer.
A Little Love Song
Michelle Magorian, Mammoth, 0 7497 1061 6, £5.99 pbk
The author of Goodnight Mr Tom has written a story about two teenage sisters sent to a sleepy seaside town during World War 2. They are sent to be out of harm’s way. For the first time they are free from adult restrictions and for the girls it is a summer of togetherness, discovery and love. Rose aged 17 becomes a young woman. I like this book because the storyline has some mysterious twists and tells such a heart-felt romantic story. I like how Rose finds out about the previous occupier of their cottage. Some people may find the story mushy and occasionally slightly confusing when storylines merge quite suddenly.
I would recommend the book because the author uses great description and detail to paint the perfect scene in your mind. The characters are believable and by the end part of the story you find yourself quite attached to the main characters. The writing is so passionate that many readers will be emotionally involved in the story.
Mates, Dates and Cosmic Kisses
Cathy Hopkins, Piccadilly, 1 85340 624 4, £5.99 pbk
This is one of a series about a group of teenage girls. The story focuses on Izzy who is waiting for a boy to ring her but a week goes by. Her friends discuss her situation with her and she checks her horoscopes for further help.
I like the book because it is about everyday life and situations. The best thing about the book is that teenagers may have experienced similar situations and will be able to relate to the characters. The storyline captures your attention. I recommend the book because it is real life. The language is modern and I like the diary style. I think readers will like it because it is funny and romantic. My friend read Mates, Dates and Big Mistakes by the same author and enjoyed it.
In the Middle of the Night
Robert Cormier, HarperCollins, 0 00 713304 9, £4.99 pbk
The phone calls come every year waking Denny up in the middle of the night. Every year Denny’s father answers the phone but never speaks. The calls come because he is still being blamed for an incident 25 years ago, a fire that he had accidentally started in Wickburgs Theatre.
The best thing about this book is that you don’t know what will happen next; there is always a surprise around the corner. Some readers may find this book a little confusing trying to keep up with the characters because it swaps stories, from present day with Denny’s story and then to the past with his Dad’s story and what happened in the theatre. I recommend this book because it is full of mystery, action and adventure.
Robert Swindells, Corgi, 0 440 86363 5, £4.99 pbk
This is an adventure story. Rosie is a traveller who discovers how to become invisible. Her friends copy her and use this skill to track down the person responsible for the art thefts where they live. This is a fun adventure but the author also deals with racism and bullying issues. He uses a lot of up to date vocabulary. You want to keep on reading and will be surprised by the ending. The story will appeal to a wide age range.
Thanks to Bridget McMillan, School Librarian.