By: Kristin Levine
Genre: Historical Fiction
Length: 320 pages
This book is a very inspirational story about a girl named Marlee, who lives in the town of Little Rock, Arkansas. In her town, there are many people who don’t support integration, and that confuses Marlee. She is very quiet, and doesn’t have many friends. A new, nice girl comes into school, and befriends Marlee. But when she finds out the truth about the girl’s background, everything changes.
This story was very inspirational, and heartwarming. It is an example of how racism is a very large problem in our world, and has been for a long time. The book takes place in a dark time in our history, and it focuses on the things that people were doing to help the oppressed, and how some people didn’t know about the horrible things happening in their own towns.
Reviewed by Megan, 2025
A Novel By: Sherman Alexie
Art By: Ellen Forney
Inspired by the author's own experiences while growing up, this book tells the story of an Indian boy rising above the life he was expected to live.
“And that a basketball game, even between two small schools in the middle of nowhere, can be a difference between being happy and being miserable for the rest of my life.” (pg.184)
Born with a variety of medical problems Junior is picked on by everyone except his best friend. Due to his determination to receive a great education Junior leaves the rez to go to an all white school in the neighboring farm town. Even though the people of his tribe have labelled him as a traitor, Junior lives life with a ton of laughter and wit.
This book is both heart wrenching and hilarious at the same time. While reading this sometimes I will catch myself laughing on the outside while my heart is breaking on the inside. This is an ABSOLUTELY wonderful book that will leave you with both laughs and tears.
Review by Nia, 2023
“My heart will still ache sometimes. Maybe more often than not. I think it's possible to be healed without feeling whole."
This beautifully written novel by Monica Hesse is about a Dutch girl who has moments in peril, but remains resolute throughout during a dark time in WWII.
Hanneke regularly delivers black market goods to customers, and thinks of it as a small rebellion. However, she hides this illegal work from her parents. Meanwhile, she also mourns over her boyfriend who was killed on the Dutch front lines.
One afternoon when Hanneke visits Ms. Jansen, she is expecting to hear that she wants kerosene. However, she is startled by the news that Ms. Jansen requests of her: she wants her to find a Jewish teenager that she has been secretly hiding in her house. Initially, Hanneke didn’t wish to fulfill the task, but she was ultimately drawn into the mystery.
This award-winning historical fiction novel is recommended for fans of The Book Thief, Salt to the Sea, and Between Shades of Grey.
“A beautiful combination of heartbreak, loss, young love, and hope.” -Kristin Hannah, #1 bestselling author of The Nightingale
Review by Caitlyn, 2024
Book review by Daniella
“ ‘ Where is she? What did they do to her?’ ‘She’s gone.’ Becky said. ‘Gone?’ I repeated. ‘Gone where?’ Becky studied her shoes again. ‘Sold’.
Disaster strikes when Isabel and her sister Ruth are taken to New York at the start of the Revolutionary War after their previous owner dies. The Locktons, their new owners are possibly the worst people to step foot on Earth (or at least Isabel thinks so), and to add on top of that, they are on the side of the British! Upon their arrival on the New York dock, they meet their soon to be close friend Curzon, a servant to a high ranked Patriot. As life becomes harder and harder as the war continues, it comes to the worst possible point after her sister is taken away. Is it possible for life to improve?Will she ever see her sister again? All Isabel knows, is that nothing will be getting better by staying in New York.
In this beautifully written book by well known author Laurie Halse Anderson, we take a glimpse of what life was like during the Revolutionary War as we follow Isabel through her exciting (though tough) life.
This is a great read for any age above 10! Though the book starts out slow, it quickly picks up speed and it’s off to the land of the Revolutionary War! Continue to read this series with the trilogy!
“Have you ever wondered what a human life is worth? That morning, my brother's was worth a pocket watch.”
During Stalin's cleansing of the Baltic Region, 15-year-old Lina fights for her life and takes comfort in her art.
This beautifully crafted novel is told from the perspective of a fifteen-year old Lithuanian girl, Lina. During the evening of June 14, 1941, the Soviet Police deports Lina along with her mother and younger brother. They are forced into a dirty train car where the destination remains unknown. It soon becomes clear that they are being sent to a forced-labor camp in Siberia. Meanwhile, her father is being sentenced to death in a prison camp. As Lina fights for her life, she takes comfort in her art, and writes messages that she hopes will make it to her father's prison camp. Through arduous labor, cattle cars, and living in the Arctic Circle, Lina persists through a harrowing journey with great determination and fear.
This award-winning historical fiction novel is recommended for fans of The Book Thief, Salt to the Sea, and The Nightingale.
“Few books are beautifully written fewer are still important; this novel is both.” - the Washington Post
Review by Caitlyn, 2024