• Top 10 Books to Read This Summer

    by  • May 19, 2017 • Homepage, Opinion • 0 Comments

    During the summer, us teenagers are still hard at work. Whether it’s having a summer job, going to driving school, or struggling to get through summer homework, our time off becomes very limited. However, a lot of us don’t get the time to read during the school year because our everyday busy schedules that revolve around academics and extracurricular activities. In the summer, contemporary novels are one of the best types of novels to read because they are often short and easy to fly through. Whether it’s a novel of realism, cute romance, psychological thrillers or an advocate of social issues are breezy reads that you can fly through. whether it’s at the beach or in your air-conditioned living room.

    • Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

      Everything, Everything cover. Photo from Wikimedia.

    This story follows 18 year old Madeline Whittier, whose immune system cannot tolerate the outdoors, confining her indoors for the majority of her life. The only two people she has ever known in her life is her mother and her nurse, Carla. That is, until Olly, a boy who wears all black and practices parkour, moves next door. After instant messaging, writing each other messages on their windows and secret visits, the two begin to fall in love. Maddy decides to risk everything, including but not limited to her life,  in order to truly be with Olly and the rest of the world. Soon to be a major motion picture, “Everything Everything” is an adorable story that will make you laugh and cry, all while emphasizing that love doesn’t kill you; it’s the fear of it that does.

    • Geekerella by Ashley Poston

      Geekerella cover. Photo from Wikimedia.

    This novel is a Cinderella re-telling, but with a nerdy twist and is told from a dual pr. Seventeen year old Elle Wittimer is enamored by the tv show Starfield, a Star-Trek type of show. The show itself along with its fandom is her only escape from her horrific stepmother and stepsisters. Hollywood is making a movie reboot of Starfield, and the male lead who is playing Federation Prince Carmindor is actor Darien Freeman, our other narrator. While Darien struggles with doing justice to the Starfield fans who consider him just another heartthrob, Elle is trying to get tickets to a con where she can enter a cosplay contest and win not only a cash prize, but an invitation to the Cosplay Ball and the chance to meet Freeman. An adorable romance story, Geekerella is a love letter to anyone who believes in the magic of fandom.

    • The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

    Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed. Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.But what Starr does—or does not—say could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.

    (taken from Amazon.com)

    • The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

      The Sun is Also a Star cover. Photo from Wikimedia.

    It is Natasha's last day in New York City, where she has lived for 10 years. Her family, living as undocumented immigrants in a small Brooklyn apartment, are being deported to Jamaica after her father's arrest for drunk driving. Natasha is scouring the city for a chance to stay in the United States legally. She wants the normal teen existence of her peers. Meanwhile, poetic Daniel is on his way to an interview as part of his application process to Yale. He is under great pressure to get in because his parents (who emigrated from South Korea) are adamant that he become a doctor. Events slowly conspire to bring the two leads together. When Daniel and Natasha finally meet, he falls in love immediately and convinces her to join him for the day. They tell their stories in alternating chapters. Additional voices are integrated into the book as characters interact with them. Both relatable and profound, the bittersweet ending conveys a sense of hopefulness that will resonate with teens. VERDICT This wistful love story will be adored by fans of Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor & Park.

    (From School Library Journal)

    • To all The Boys I’ve Loved Before Series by Jenny Han

    What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them…all at once? Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.

    (From Amazon.com)

    • The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Saenz

    Sal begins his senior year with an unfamiliar fire burning inside him. He's always been a good kid, firmly enfolded in the love of his gay adoptive father, their extended family, and his best friend Samantha. But suddenly, every cut and insult sends him into a violent rage. The more fights he gets into, the more he wonders about the source of these impulses. He worries that some terrible gene he inherited from his unknown biological father is taking hold of him.
    As the year progresses, Sal struggles with his identity, flailing around in relationships that have been the steady heartbeat of his life — until now. Sudden tragedies force Sal and his loved ones to pull together when it would be easier to drift apart, leaving them to come to terms with loss, hope, and acceptance.

    Sáenz tackles issues of race, queerness, feminism, and poverty with a deft and gentle hand, wrapping up the things that could have made this into an "issue" book into a journey of self-discovery and acceptance. These characters feel like fully realized people, and Sáenz gives us a window into a brutal and beautiful year in their lives.

    (Taken from npr.org)

    • The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

    Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful. Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly's totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie's new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she'll get her first kiss and she'll get her twin back.
    There's only one problem: Molly's coworker, Reid. He's a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there's absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.

    (Taken from amazon.com)

    • The One Memory of Flora Banks by Emily Barr

      The Memory of Flora Banks cover. Photo from Wikimedia.

    Seventeen-year-old Flora Banks has no short-term memory. Her mind resets itself several times a day, and has since the age of ten, when the tumor that was removed from Flora’s brain took with it her ability to make new memories. That is, until she kisses Drake, her best friend's boyfriend, the night before he leaves town. Miraculously, this one memory breaks through Flora's fractured mind, and sticks. Flora is convinced that Drake is responsible for restoring her memory and making her whole again. So, when an encouraging email from Drake suggests she meet him on the other side of the world—in Svalbard, Norway—Flora knows with certainty that this is the first step toward reclaiming her life. But will following Drake be the key to unlocking Flora’s memory? Or will the journey reveal that nothing is quite as it seems?

    Already a bestselling debut in the UK, this unforgettable novel is Memento meets We Were Liars and will have you racing through the pages to unravel the truth.

    (Taken from amazon.com)

    • Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth

    Fans of Star Wars and Divergent will revel in internationally bestselling author Veronica Roth’s stunning new science-fiction fantasy series.

    On a planet where violence and vengeance rule, in a galaxy where some are favored by fate, everyone develops a currentgift, a unique power meant to shape the future. While most benefit from their currentgifts, Akos and Cyra do not—their gifts make them vulnerable to others’ control. Can they reclaim their gifts, their fates, and their lives, and reset the balance of power in this world?
    Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s currentgift gives her pain and power—something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows.Akos is from the peace-loving nation of Thuvhe, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Though protected by his unusual currentgift, once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get his brother out alive—no matter what the cost. When Akos is thrust into Cyra’s world, the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. They must decide to help each other to survive—or to destroy one another.

    (Taken from harpercollins.com)

    • Holding Up The Universe by Jennifer Niven

    Everyone thinks they know Libby Strout, the girl once dubbed "America's Fattest Teen." But no one's taken the time to look past her weight to get to know who she really is. Following her mom's death, she's been picking up the pieces in the privacy of her home, dealing with her heartbroken father and her own grief. Now, Libby's ready: for high school, for new friends, for love, and for EVERY POSSIBILITY LIFE HAS TO OFFER

    Everyone thinks they know Jack Masselin, too. Yes, he's got swagger, but he's also mastered the impossible art of giving people what they want, of fitting in. What no one knows is that Jack has a newly acquired secret: he can't recognize faces. Even his own brothers are strangers to him. He's the guy who can re-engineer and rebuild anything in new and bad-ass ways, but he can't understand what's going on with the inner workings of his brain. So he tells himself to play it cool: Be charming. Be hilarious. Don't get too close to anyone.

    Until he meets Libby. When the two get tangled up in a cruel high school game — which lands them in group counseling and community service — Libby and Jack are both pissed, and then surprised. Because the more time they spend together, the less alone they feel. . . . Because sometimes when you meet someone, it changes the world, theirs and yours.

    Jennifer Niven delivers another poignant, exhilarating love story about finding that person who sees you for who you are — and seeing them right back.

    (Taken from jenniferniven.com)

    About

    Christina is a junior and this is her second year as part of the Blue and Gold team. She is currently a lead reporter. She says she looks “forward to mentoring the new reporters and meeting the diverse staff this year”. While she describes herself as quiet and reserved, she is very outgoing and hates staying at home. One of her favorite hobbies is reading comic books. Her favorite genre of music is alternative and she enjoys listening to bands such as Twenty-One Pilots, All Time Low, 5 Seconds of Summer, Walk the Moon, and Grouplove. Her favorite song is Fifteen by Taylor Swift, but she doesn’t listen to her as much, however, her favorite song lyric “I’ve never heard silence quite this loud” is also by Taylor Swift. Some of her favorite movies are Captain America: Civil War, The Parent Trap, 16 Candles, and Nerve. Game of Thrones, Pretty Little Liars, Once Upon A Time, and Daredevil are a few of her favorite TV shows. She is a very avid fan of Bubble Milk Tea, and while her favorite food by far is ziti with chicken and broccoli, she admits that Chinese is a close second. This summer she taught Algebra and Geometry in the Summer School program which was a fun experience. Some places she wishes to visit are New York City, Disney World, San Diego Comic Con, Boston Comic Con, and Italy. Her favorite quote is “In the end, we only regret the chances we didn’t take.” -Anonymous

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