Friendship in YA Fiction

Echo Mountain

Ellie is a 12-year-old girl whose life changes dramatically as a result of the Great Depression. Her dad, a tailor, and mom, a teacher, manage to hang onto normal city life for a while, but eventually lose the proverbial shirts… Read More ›

Charming as a Verb

Okay, let me start with a disclaimer that Ben Philippe is currently my very favorite YA author. Yes, I wish he didn’t sometimes use religious profanity and occasional slang that undoubtedly gives offense to some readers, but he is spot-on… Read More ›

Hard Wired

Fifteen-year-old Quinn spends much of his free time with best friends Luke, Leon and Jeremy at the Enchanted Grounds gamer coffee shop. When they meet there for the weekly Magic the Gathering tournament, Quinn quickly dispatches a young challenger and… Read More ›

Hearts Unbroken

When Native American Lou relocates from Texas to Kansas in January of her junior year, she quickly captures the attention of star jock Cam Ryan and pretty much makes a seamless transition into the new high school. As the months… Read More ›

burn our bodies down

Seventeen-year-old Margot Nielsen lives with one crazy mother in a sparsely-furnished upstairs apartment over an abandoned storefront in tiny Calhoun, Nebraska. Life is dreary. She has no friends and her relationship with her mother is fraught with emotional booby-traps that… Read More ›

The Black Kids

Set in Los Angeles in the year 1992–the year LA erupted into violence after the brutal beating of Rodney King by four LAPD officers–this story traces the evolution of senior Ashley Bennett, her friends, and her family as they confront… Read More ›

The Mall

Set in New Jersey in 1991, this novel’s action is almost entirely confined to the local mall. This is a clever idea, and the author surprisingly is able to realize it nicely. Cassie Worthy is a new high school graduate… Read More ›