2015 Popular Paperbacks
Updated July 15, 2014
Book to Movie: Ripped From the Pages
Courtney Saldana: subcommittee chair
Anderson, Laurie Halse. Speak. Square Fish, 2011; 978-0312674397; $9.99. Young Adult novel about a girl who becomes the school outcast after her call to the police leads to the busting up of a large party and the arrest of many teens for underage drinking.
Blume, Judy. Tiger Eyes. Random House, 2013; 9780449816462; $8.99. Davey's dad is killed and now she and her family are moving to New Mexico in an attempt to grieve and recover. While there, she meets a friend who will help her go through the process of healing.
Cohn, Rachel and David Levithan. Nick & Nora’s Infinite Playlist. Ember, 2008; 978-0375846144; $7.99. This is a comedy about two teens thrust together for one hilarious, sleepless night of adventure in a world of mix tapes, late-night living, and, live, loud music.
Colfer, Chris. Struck by Lighning: The Carson Philips Journal. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2012; 9780316232951; $12.99. Carson Phillips is an outcast high school senior with dreams of getting into Northwestern and becoming the editor of The New Yorker.
Collins, Suzanne. Catching Fire. Scholastic Press, 2013; 978-0545586177; $12.99. Katniss Everdeen and her co-victor and sometimes-boyfriend Peeta are thrown back in the ring to face another Hunger Games.
Downham, Jenny. Before I Die. Random House, 2009; 9780385751834; $9.99. Tessa has just months to live and a list of things she wants to do before she dies.
Forman, Gayle. If I Stay. Penguin, 2010; 9780142415436; $9.99. Seventeen year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall what happened afterwards, watching her own damaged body being taken from the wreck. Little by little she struggles to put together the pieces.
Garcia, Kami and Margaret Stohl. Beautiful Creatures. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2012; 9780316231657; $7.99. Lena Duchannes struggles to conceal her power, and a curse that has haunted her family for generations.
Green, John. The Fault in our Stars. Speak: Penguin, 2014; 978-0142424179; $12.99. The story of Hazel and Augustus, two teens who meet at a cancer support group, and who share a love story filled with small infinities.
Hartinger, Brent. Geography Club. HarperTeen, 2004; 978-0060012236; $9.99. Russel Middlebrook is convinced he's the only gay kid at Goodkind High School.
Jones, Diana Wynne. Howl’s Moving Castle. Greenwillow Books, 2008; 978-0061478789; $7.99. Sophie, the eldest of three daughters, is destined to fail miserably should she ever leave home to seek her fate. Sophie finds herself under a horrid spell. Her only chance at breaking it lies in the ever-moving castle in the hills.
Le Guin, Ursula. Wizard of Earthsea. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012; 978-0547773742; $7.99. This is the tumultuous tale of Zed’s testing, how he mastered the mighty words of power, tamed an ancient dragon, and crossed death's threshold to restore balance to the world.
Levine, Gail Carson. Ella Enchanted. HarperCollins, 2011; 978-0064407052; $6.99. At her birth, Ella of Frell was given a foolish fairy's gift—the "gift" of obedience. Ella must obey any order given to her, whether it's hopping on one foot for a day or chopping off her own head! She goes on a quest determined to break the curse.
Marchetta, Melina. Looking For Alibrandi. Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2006; 978-0375836947; $8.99. Narrator, Josie, comes from an Italian family that immigrated to Australia. At a Catholic school she doesn’t like, surrounded by people who don’t understand the Italian part of her culture, seventeen-year-old Josie feels adrift--a feeling that is further complicated when her long-absent father comes back on the scene.
Mead, Richelle. Vampire Academy. Razorbill, 2007; 978-1595141743; $9.99. After two years on the run, best friends Rose, half-human/half-vampire, and Lissa, a mortal vampire princess, are caught and returned to St. Vladimir's Academy.
Moore, Alan. Watchmen. DC Comics, 2005; 978-0930289232; $19.95. The story concerns a group called the Crimebusters and a plot to kill and discredit them. Set in the backdrop of the US/Soviet missile conflict in 1985.
Quick, Matthew. Silver Linings Playbook. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012; 9780374533571; $14.99. Pat Peoples returns home from a mental health facility, and tries to find the silver linings of everything as he deals with his family, estranged wife, and his odd, new friend Tiffany.
Rennison, Louise. Angus,Thongs, and Full-Frontal Snogging. HarperTeen, 2006; 978-0064472272; $9.99. Written as diary entries, 14-year-old Georgia Nicolson’s wry observations and self-deprecating humor cover everything from prudish parents and bed-wetting three-year-old siblings to errant cat behavior and kissing (aka snogging) lessons.
Riordan, Rick. The Lightning Thief. Disney Hyperion, 2006; 978-0786838653; $8.99. Zeus' master lightning bolt has been stolen, and Percy Jackson is the prime suspect.
Roth, Veronica. Divergent. Katherine Tegen Books, 2012; 978-0062024039; $8.99. In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions. On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives.
Schlosser, Eric. Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal. Mariner Books, 2012; 978-0547750330; $14.95. Eric Schlosser’s exposé revealed how the fast food industry has altered the landscape of America, widened the gap between rich and poor, fueled an epidemic of obesity, and transformed food production throughout the world.
Tharp, Tim. The Spectacular Now. Random House Childrens Publishers, 2010; 9780375865022; $10.99. Party boy meets socially awkward, passive girl who has no idea how to speak up for herself. He takes her under his wing but ends up learning from her instead.
Tolkein, J.R.R. The Hobbit; or, There and Back Again. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012; 9780547928227; $13.95. Bilbo Baggins sets off with a band of Dwarves to help win back their home from a great dragon.
Zevin, Gabrielle. Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac. Square Fish, 2009; 0312561288; $8.99. Naomi falls down the stairs and looses all of the memories from the last six years of her life. She now has to figure out how to live a life she doesn't understand and decide which parts she wants to change.
Zusak, Markus. The Book Thief. Knopf, 2007; 978-0375842207; $12.99. A haunting story of Nazi Germany, narrated by the voice of Death, following the life of a book thief, young Liesel Meminger, and who finds escape in the pages of stolen books.
Mysteries: Murder, Mayhem, and Other Adventures
Joan Callen: subcommittee chair
Black, Holly. White Cat. Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2011; 978-1416963974; $8.99. Cassel, 17, is an anomaly as the only untalented one in a family of curse workers. Cassel relies on his quick wit and con-artist skills to convince his private-school classmates that he's normal. Cassel begins to suspect he’s part of one huge con game, he must unravel his past and his memories.
Blundell, Judy. Strings Attached. Scholastic, 2012; 978-0545221276; $7.99. When Kit Corrigan arrives in New York City, she doesn't have much. Nate Benedict will give her an apartment. All she has to do is keep him informed about his son Billy.
Bradbury, Jennifer. Shift. Simon and Schuster: Atheneum, 2012; 9781442408524; $9.99. Best friends decide to celebrate their high school graduation by riding their bikes to the west coast, but only one of them makes it.
Bradley, Alan. The Sweetness of the Bottom of the Pie: A Flavia de Luce Mystery. Random House: Bantam Books, 2010; 978-0385343497; $15.00. Flavia de Luce is a young girl growing up in 1950's Britain.. When a dead body is discovered in the cucumber patch of her family's decaying mansion, Flavia begins to follow the clues, wherever they may lead.
Bray, Libba. Diviners. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2013; 978-0316126106; $11.00. After her secret gift for divining information from objects lands her in trouble, 17-year-old Evangeline O'Neill is sent from Ohio to live with her uncle, who runs a museum specializing in folklore and the occult in Manhattan. Although she starts out her new life like the party girl she was back home, her pursuits become more serious when her uncle is asked to help solve a series of strange murders.
Brennan, Sarah Rees. Unspoken. Ember, 2013; 978-0375871030; $8.99. Kami Glass is in love with someone she's never met—a boy she's talked to in her head since she was born.This is an urban fantasy with a spunky girl reporter inspired by Veronica Mars and classic gothic tales.
Brown, Teri. Born of Illusion. HarperCollins, 2014; 9780062187550; $9.99. This thrilling historical suspense novel is the story of a budding magician who has spent her life playing sidekick to her faux-medium mother—and trying to hide the fact that she possesses magnificent powers.
Cameron, Sharon. The Dark Unwinding. Scholastic, 2008; 978-0545327879; $8.99. Katharine Tulman is sent to her uncle’s estate to have him committed to an asylum. But instead of a lunatic, Katharine discovers a genius inventor with his own set of childlike rules, who is employing a village of nine hundred people rescued from the workhouses of London.
Carringer, Gail. Etiquette & Espionage. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2013. 9780316190107; $10.00. Sophronia is enrolled in Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality to learn proper decorum. But she soon discovers that its students are learning more than a proper curtsy.
Cashore, Kristin. Bitterblue. Firebird, 2013; 978-0142426012; $9.99. Bitterblue needs to know Monsea’s past to lead it into the future, so she begins exploring the city streets at night, disguised and alone. As she does, she meets two thieves, who hold a key to the truth of Leck's reign.
Coley, Liz. Pretty Girl-13. Katherine Tegen Books, 2014; 978-0062127396; $9.99. Angela arrives home one day thinking she was coming home from camp. The reality is that she has been missing for three years and is now 16.
Derting, Kimberly. The Body Finder. HarperCollins: Harper, 2006; 9780061779831; $9.99. Violet has the ability to sense where bodies are buried. It's not exactly a gift, as far as she's concerned, but she does lead an interesting life as a result of it.
Doyle, Sir Arthur Conan, adapted by Ian Edginton, Illu., I.N.J. Culbard. A Study in Scarlet: A Sherlock Holmes Graphic Novel. Sterling, 2010; 9781402770821; $14.95. A man's body is found in an empty room and the only clue is a name partly written in blood on the wall.
Fforde, Jasper. The Eyre Affair. Penguin, 2004; 9780142001806; $16.00. Thursday Next, a literary detective, must stop a notorious criminal from kidnapping characters from original manuscripts before Jane Eyre is ruined forever.
Flynn, Gillian. The Dark Places. Crown Publishing Group: Three Rivers Press, 2009; 978-0-307-34157-0; $14.00. Libby Day's family was brutally murdered 20 years ago. Libby and her brother Ben were the only survivors. Ben is currently in prison for the crime, thanks to Libby's testimony. Years later Libby is forced to confront exactly what happened to her family.
Gleason, Colleen. Clockwork Scarab. Chronicle Books, 2014; 978-1452128733, $9.99. If Stoker and Holmes don't figure out why London's finest sixteen-year-old women are in danger, they'll become the next victims.
Harrington, Kim. Clarity. Point, 2012; 978-0545230513; $8.99. Clarity "Clare" Fern sees things. When a teenage girl is found murdered, Clare's ex-boyfriend wants her to help solve the case.
Hautman, Pete. Blank Confession. Simon and Schuster, 2011; 9781416913283; $8.99. A new kid in town shows up to the police station to confess to a murder. As the details begin to fill in, the only thing that becomes clear is that nothing about Shayne's story is clear at all.
Henry, April. The Night She Disappeared. Macmillan: Square Fish, 2013; 9781250016744; $9.99. A trio of friends who work at a pizzeria switch swifts one night only to learn that a stalker has been watching one girl in particular, and now he's kidnapped the wrong girl.
Jones, Diana Wynne. Fire and Hemlock. Firebird, 2012; 978-0142420140; $8.99. Polly Whittacker has two sets of memories. In the first, things are boringly normal; in the second, her life is entangled with the mysterious, complicated cellist Thomas Lynn. One day, the second set of memories overpowers the first, and Polly knows something is very wrong. Someone has been trying to make her forget Tom - whose life, she realizes, is at supernatural risk.
Lane, Andrew. Death Cloud: The Legend Begins. Macmillan: Square Fish, 2011; 9780312563714; $9.99. On vacation from boarding school, a young Sherlock Holmes finds what he thought would be a tedious visit to the countryside suddenly turns into a hunt for a murderer.
Larbalestier, Justine. Liar. Bloomsbury USA Childrens, 2010; 978-1599905198; $9.99. Micah is a liar. That's the one thing she won't lie about. And the honest truth is buried so deep in Micah's mind even she doesn't know if it's real.
Lee, Y.S. The Agency: A Spy in the House Candlewick, 2011; 978-0763652890; $7.99. A house thief is spared the gallows when she's groomed to be a spy in this Victorian history mystery.
Lu, Marie. Legend. Speak, 2013; 978-0142422076; $9.99. From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths - until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect.
Lyga, Barry. I Hunt Killers. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2013; 978-0316125833; $9.00. Jazz is the son of the world's most infamous serial killer. Jazz has witnessed crime scenes the way cops wish they could--from the criminals' point of view. And now, even though Dad has been in jail for years, bodies are piling up in the sleepy town of Lobo's Nod.
Marchetta, Melina. Jellicoe Road. HarperCollins, 2010; 978-0061431852; $9.99. Australian boarding school mystery where gangs fight for territory and one girl pieces together the puzzle of her past.
Marillier, Juliet. Wildwood Dancing. Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2008; 978-0375844744; $8.99. Jena unravels the mysteries surrounding the wildwood near her beloved home and the magical kingdom beyond in order to keep her family safe.
Miranda, Megan. Fracture. Walker Childrens, 2013; 978-0802734310; $9.99. Scientific thriller blurs the lines between life and death as Delaney tries to understand her strange new ability and fit back into the life she used to have.
Patterson, James. Confessions of a Murder Suspect. Little, Brown and Company, 2013; 978-0316207003; $10.00. Tandy’s parents were murdered. The suspect list only includes Tandy and her three siblings. She can't trust anyone--maybe not even herself.
Rosenfeld, Kat. Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone. Penguin, 2013; 9780142426104; $8.99. Short chapters detailing the last days of Amelia Anne Richardson's life are intercut with Becca's own summer as the parallel stories of two young women struggling with self-identity and relationships on the edge twist the reader closer and closer to the truth about Amelia's death.
Salerni, Dianne. The Caged Graves. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014; 9780544336223; $9.99. When Verity Boone returns to her hometown in 1867, nothing is as it seems especially the cage around her mother’s grave.
Sanderson, Brandon. The Rithmatist. Tor Teen, 2014; 978-0765338440; $9.99. Rithmatist students are disappearing from Armedius Academy. Assigned to help the professor who is investigating the crimes, Joel and his friend Melody find themselves on the trail of an unexpected discovery
Schwab, Victoria. The Archived. Disney Hyperion, 2014; 9781423157311; $8.99. Each body has a story to tell, a life seen in pictures that only Librarians can read. The dead are called Histories, and the vast realm in which they rest is the Archive. In the Archive, the dead must never be disturbed. And yet, someone is deliberately altering Histories, erasing essential chapters. Unless Mac can piece together what remains, the Archive itself might crumble and fall.
Schwab, Victoria. The Near Witch. Disney Hyperion, 2012; 978-1423142423; $8.99. Children of Near start disappearing from their beds, and a mysterious boy falls under suspicion.
Sedgwick, Marcus. Midwinterblood. Square Fish, 2014; 978-1250040077; $9.99. Seven stories of passion and love separated by centuries but mysteriously intertwined.
Silvey, Craig. Jasper Jones. Random House: Ember, 2012; 9780375866272; $9.99. A young boy from Australia discovers the body of dead girl and tries to solve the mystery of what happened to her while protecting the one person he thinks might have committed the crime.
Suma, Nova Ren. 17 & Gone. Penguin, 2014; 9780142425329; $9.99. Seventeen-year-old Lauren is having visions of girls who have gone missing. And all these girls have just one thing in common—they are 17 and gone without a trace.
Suma, Nova Ren. Imaginary Girls. Penguin, 2012; 9780142421437; $8.99. Two years after the death of a classmate, Chloe is coming home; returning to the town she left, the friends she left, returning to her charismatic sister, Ruby. As Chloe flirts with the truth that Ruby has hidden deeply away, the fragile line between life and death is redrawn by the complex bonds of sisterhood.
Wasserman, Robin. The Book of Blood and Shadow. Random House Children's Books, 2013; 9780375872778; $10.99. One girl. One night. Centuries of secrets. Nora finds herself in the middle of a nightmare tied to a mysteriously indecipherable book called the Voynich Manuscript and the forces who want to unravel its secrets.
Whaley, John Corey. Where Things Come Back. Simon and Schuster: Atheneum, 2012; 9781442413344; $9.99. Seventeen-year-old Cullen is looking to get out of his quiet little town but then his brother disappears.
Williams, Katie. The Space Between Trees. Chronicle Books, 2013; 9781452128542; $9.99. Evie invents a nonexistent romance out of the crush she has on Jonah. But when Jonah discovers a body in the woods—a girl Evie knew when she was little—Evie's lies grow more complicated. As Evie hunts down the killer, she comes to find that her lies are the only things she can trust.
Zevin, Gabrielle. All These Things I’ve Done. MacMillan Children's Books, 2012; 978-0330537896; $9.99. Chocolate is now a contraband. Cell phone use is illegal. Things aren't great. But for Anya Belanchine things are about to get a lot worse, when her ex-boyfriend has turned up dead and all fingers point to Anya.
Lock Up: Teens Behind Bars
Amanda Margis: subcommittee chair
Chura, David. I Don't Wish Nobody to Have a Life Like Mine: Tales of Kids in Adult Lockup. Beacon Press, 2011; 9780807001233; $14.00. A veteran's teacher view of the lives of juveniles sentenced as adults.
Colfer, Ian. Airman. Disney Book Group: Hyperion Books for Children, 2009; 9781423107514; $7.99. Conor Broekhart is a loyal bodyguard to the king until he is falsely accused of plotting to assassinate his king.
Cormier, Robert. The Rag and Bone Shop. Random: Laurel Leaf, 2004; 9780440229711; $6.99. A hot-shot police interrogator attempts to extract a confession from 12-year-old Jason Dorrant, even as he becomes increasingly sure of Jason’s innocence.
Cormier, Robert. Tenderness. Random: Ember, 2004; 9780385731331; $8.99. Eric Poole--a serial killer who seems utterly incapable of feeling guilt or remorse--has just been released from prison when he meets Lori, a very damaged young woman who has developed an unhealthy fixation on Eric.
Dean, Carolee. Take Me There. Simon Pulse, 2012; 9781416989509; $8.99. Dylan vows to go straight after getting out of juvie for stripping cars. His past life catches up with him and he takes a wild cross-country road trip to see his father who is on death row.
Faryon, Cynthia. Real Justice: Sentenced to Life at Seventeen: The Story of David Milgaard. Lorimer, 2013; 9781552774335; $12.95. The true story of the seemingly impossible string of coincidences, plus plain miscarriages of justice, that led a Canadian teen to being wrongfully imprisoned for 23 years.
Gantos, Jack. Hole in My Life. Square Fish, 2012; 978-0312641573; $9.99. Prizewinning author Jack Gantos confronts the period of struggle and confinement that marked the end of his own youth, his time in prison and how he moved on.
Giles, Gail. What Happened to Cass McBride. Little, Brown and Company, 2007; 9780316166393; $7.99. Kyle sets out to avenge his brother's suicide by kidnapping the girl he holds responsible and burying her alive.
Griffin, Paul. Stay With Me. Speak, 2012; 9780142421727; $8.99. Cece & Mack couldn't be more different, straight A student and high school dropout with a record. They fall in love anyway until a tragic event tears them apart and leads them on different paths.
Hale, Shannon. Book of a Thousand Days. Bloomsbury, 2009; 9781599903781; $9.99. Dashti, a maid servant to Lady Saren, recounts their years imprisoned in a tower for Saren's refusal to marry a powerful lord.
Konigsburg, E. L. Silent to the Bone. Aladdin, 2004; 978-0689836022; $5.99. Connor's best friend, Branwell, is suspected of a horrible crime against his baby half-sister, who is in a coma. However, Branwell is unable to speak. Can Connor find a way to prove Branwell's innocence?
Korman, Gordon. Juvie 3. Disney-Hyperion, 2010; 978-1423101628; $8.99. What are the odds a teenage gangbanger, a 15-year-old murderer, and a 14-year-old who crashed a stolen car can keep it together when the saintly social worker who has given them a second chance at redemption ends up comatose in the hospital?
Mafi, Taherah. Shatter Me. HarperCollins Publishers, 2011; 9780062085481; $9.99. No one knows why everyone Juliette touches dies. They just know that she has to be kept away from everyone. That is until they decide she can be used as a weapon.
Mauer, Mark & Sabrina Jones. Race to Incarcerate: A Graphic Retelling. The New Press, 2013; 9781595585417; $17.95. Adapted from Mauer's 1999 classic text on the explosion of prison populations in the United States
McVoy, Terra Elan. Criminal. Simon Pulse, 2014; 9781442421639; $9.99. This book revolves around Nikki's reaction to an unthinkable crime and how her perceptions of the life she had (and her role in said crime) change after her arrest.
Moore, Wes. Discovering Wes Moore. Random House Inc: Ember, 2013; 9780385741682; $8.99. Two people ,with the same name, experience opposite life experiences.
Myers, Walter Dean. Lockdown. HarperCollins, 2010; 9780061214820; $9.99. Fourteen year old Reese wants nothing more than to get early release from Progress juvenile detention facility in the Bronx. Can Reese stay on track or will he fall back into old habits and bad decisions?
Myers, Walter Dean. Monster. HarperCollins, 2001; 9780064407311; $9.99. Sixteen year old Steve Harmon is on trial for the murder of a Harlem convenient store clerk. While waiting for his trial, Steve recounts the events that lead to his arrest in screenplay format often blurring the line between truth and fiction.
Rapp, Adam. The Buffalo Tree. Boyds Mills Press, Inc: Front Street, 2007; 9781932425994; $10.95. A young man, who is caught up in the circumstances of his harsh life, struggles to forge a new path and identity.
Sachar, Louis. Holes. Random House Inc., 2004; 9780440414803; $6.99. Stanley Yelnats is the most recent Yelnats to suffer the family curse. After being convicted he is sent to Camp Green Lake where he digs holes all day to build "character."
Sleator, William. House of Stairs. Penguin: Puffin, 2004; 9780140345803; $6.99. Five teens find themselves incarcerated in a bizarre labyrinth of stairs, subjected to an increasingly disturbing psychological experiment.
Smith, Alexander Gordon. Lockdown: Escape from Furnace 1. Square Fish, 2010; 978-0312611934; $9.99. Convicted of a murder he didn’t commit, sentenced to life without parole, “new fish” Alex Sawyer knows he has two choices: find a way out, or resign himself to a death behind bars, in the darkness at the bottom of the world.
Strasser, Todd. Boot Camp. Simon & Schuster, 2012; 9781442433588; $8.99. Garrett is sent to Harmony Lake, a boot camp for troubled teens. He has hopes of an incredibly risky escape plot after being beaten and humiliated.
Turner, Megan Whalen. The Thief. Greenwillow Books, 2005; 978-0060824976; $8.99. After Gen's bragging lands him in the king's prison, the chances of escape look slim. Then the king's scholar, the magus, needs the thief's skill for a seemingly impossible task -- to steal a hidden treasure from another land.
Volponi, Paul. Black and White. Speak, 2006; 9780142406922; $6.99. Marcus and Eddie, also known as Black and White, are best friends and stars of their high school basketball team when they are caught for armed robbery.
Volponi, Paul. Rikers High. Speak, 2011; 9780142417782; $7.99. Martin is arrested for telling an undercover where to buy weed and spends months waiting for a court case. He tries to keep to himself but is absorbed in prison culture.
Warren, Andrea. Surviving Hitler: A Boy in the Nazi Death Camps. Harper: HarperTrophy, 2002; 978-0060007676; $6.99. The horrifying true story of Jack Mandelbaum's life in Nazi concentration camps, being shuttled from one camp to another, trying to find a way to beat Hitler.
Yolen, Jane. Girl in a Cage. Penguin: Speak, 2004; 9780142401323; $6.99. Marjorie Bruce,the only heir to Robert the Bruce of Scotland, tells the story of her weeks being held as a hostage by Edward Longshanks, King of England, as well as the months leading up to her capture.
Narrative Non-Fiction: Inspired by Actual Events
Jennifer Kendall: subcommittee chair
Allen, Thomas. George Washington, Spymaster: How the Americans Outspied the British and Won the Revolutionary War. National Geographic, 2007; 9781426300417; $7.95. An account of the American Revolution from the perspective of the intricate web of espionage, counter-espionage, codes, and ciphers, all led up by one of our greatest American heroes.
Ambrose, Stephen E. Band of Brothers: E Company, 506th Regiment, 101st Airborne from Normandy to Hitler's Eagle's Nest. Simon & Schuster, 2004; 978-0743224543; $17.00. This book follows E Company of the 101st Airborne Div. of the US Army through the European theater during WWII.
Bartoletti, Susan. Black Potatoes: The Story Of The Great Irish Famine, 1845-1850. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2004; 9780618548835; $9.95. The story of the Irish potato famine.
Blumenthal, Karen. Bootleg: Murder, Moonshine, and the Lawless Years of Prohibition. Macmillan: Roaring Brook, 2011; 9781250034274; $12.99. An account of the entire history of the prohibition movement--from the cries for temperance in the early days of the Republic through passage of the 21st Amendment and beyond.
Bober, Natalie. Countdown to Independence: A Revolution of Ideas in England and her American Colonies: 1760-1776. Simon & Schuster, 2007; 978-1416963929; $19.95. A Revolution of Ideas in England and her American Colonies: 1760-1776.
Brosh, Allie. Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things That Happened. Touchstone, 2013; 978-1451666175; $17.99. Touching, absurd, and darkly comic, Allie Brosh’s highly anticipated book Hyperbole and a Half showcases her unique voice, leaping wit, and her ability to capture complex emotions with deceptively simple illustrations.
Crutcher, Chris. King of the Mild Frontier: An Ill Advised Autobiography. Greenwillow, 2004; 978-0060502515; $9.99. Crutcher explores some of the more painful elements of his childhood.
Cullen, Dave. Columbine. Grand Central, 2010; 9780446546928; $16.00. Columbine is a journalistic account of the events of April 20, 1999.
Fleischman, John. Phineas Gage: a gruesome but true story about brain science. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2004; 9780618494781; $9.95. The story and the science of how a man lived 10 years after a tamping iron shot through his head and brain.
Frank, Anne. The Diary of a Young Girl: The Definitive Edition. Random House, 1995; 9780553577129; $8.50. Story of a 13-year-old Jewish girl and her family who are forced into hiding by the Nazis during World War II. Contains 30% more information than the original.
Geary, Rick. Jack the Ripper: A Journal of the Whitechapel Murders, 1888-1889. NBM: ComicsLit, 2004; 9781561633081; $9.95. A graphic novel recounting of the Whitechapel murders of 1888, adapted from the journals of an unknown contemporary Englishman who followed the events closely.
Gownley, Jimmy. The Dumbest Idea Ever. Graphix, 2014; 978-0545453479; $11.99. This is the real-life story of how the DUMBEST idea ever became the BEST thing that ever happened to Jimmy Gownley.
Grann, David. The Lost City of Z: A Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon. Random House, 2010; 978-1400078455; $16.95. Investigative journalist David Grann follows the story of British explorer Percy Fawcett who went to find the lost city of Z in the jungles of the Amazon in 1925 and never returned.
Heiligman, Deborah. Charles and Emma: The Darwins’ Leap of Faith. Macmillan: Square Fish, 2011; 9780312661045; $9.99. Charles Darwin needed to marry, but could he marry someone whose religious convictions were in direct opposition to his own views?
Hopkinson, Deborah. Titanic: Voices From the Disaster. Scholastic, 2012; 978-0545116756; $7.99. The story of the sinking of the Titanic.
Krakauer, Jon. Into Thin Air. Anchor, 1999; 978-0385494786; $15.95. Into Thin Air is a riveting first-hand account of a catastrophic expedition up Mount Everest. In March 1996.
Krull, Katherine. Marie Curie. Penguin: Puffin, 2009; 9780142412657; $7.99. Recounts the life of Marie Curie.
Levine, Ellen S. Freedom’s Children: Young Civil Rights Activists Tell Their Own Stories. Penguin: Puffin, 2000; 9780698118706; $7.99. A collection of oral histories from 50 African Americans who were children and teens in the Deep South during the 1950s-1960s.
Levine, Karen. Hana’s Suitcase. Albert Whitman, 2007; 9780807531471; $9.99. A Japanese woman who wants to open a Holocaust museum in her country, discovers the story of a Czech Jewish girl when she receives a suitcase for the museum.
Millard, Candice. Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine, and Murder of a President. Random House: Imprint Books, 2012; 9780767929714; $16.00. A president, an assassin, and an inventor are brought together in this little known historical event in U.S. history where controversial medicine practices could have saved a life.
Murphy, Jim. The Great Fire. Scholastic, 2006; 9780439203074; $12.99. An account of the 1871 Great Fire of Chicago, which burned down 3 square miles of the city, and left 100,000 residents homeless.
Neri, G. Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty. Lee and Low Books, 2010; 978-1584302674, $13.56. A young boy is shot and killed by his fellow gang members when he accidentally shoots a neighborhood girl.
Ralston, Aron. 127 Hours: Between a Rock and a Hard Place. Atria, 2005; 9780743492829; $16.00. Aron Ralston’s survival story of his devastating hike through southeast Utah in 2001.
Rappaport, Doreen. Beyond Courage:The Untold Story of Jewish Resistance During the Holocaust. Candlewick, 2014; 978-0763669287; $15.99. Jewish resistance groups throughout Europe sabotage railroad tracks, cut telegraph lines, and organize sophisticated spy rings against Germany during World War II.
Rhodes-Courter, Ashley. Three Little Words. Simon and Schuster:Atheneum, 2009; 978-1416948070; $9.99. A young girl is taken away from her biological mother and lives with fourteen different foster care families before she's adopted by a loving family.
Rodriguez, Gaby. The Pregnancy Project. Simon and Schuster, 2013; 9781442446236; $9.99. A high school student pretends to be pregnant for her senior project in order to break down stereotypes.
Sheinkin, Steve. Bomb:The Race to Build - and Steal - the World's Most Dangerous Weapon. Macmillan: Square Fish, 2014; 9781250050649; $12.99. Bomb recounts three intertwining stories surrounding the development of the first atomic bomb,
Spiegelman, Art. Maus: A Survivor’s Tale. Random: Pantheon, 2004; 9780679748403; $23.25. A story about a young man's horrific experiences living through the Holocaust, and his son's attempts to come to grips with his father's experiences.
St. John, Warren. Outcasts United: The Story of a Refugee Soccer Team that Changed a Town. Random House: Ember, 3013; 9780385741958; $8.99. A female coach decides to form a soccer team with a group of refugee boys and changes the outlook of an entire community.
Walls, Jeanette. Glass Castle. Scribner, 2006; 978-0743247542; $16.00. Memoir which details the author’s unconventional childhood growing up with an alcoholic father and a mother who seems to be mentally ill.
Zuckoff, Mitchell. Frozen in Time LP: An Epic Story of Survival and a Modern Quest for Lost Heroes of World War II. Harper, 2013; 9780062269379; Two exciting adventure stories wrapped in one: in the first, three planes went down on the Greenland ice cap in 1942, and one group of airmen survived for months, waiting for rescue. In the second, a 2012 expedition went to reclaim the bodies of those who didn't make it out.
Zusman, Angela. The Griots of Oakland: Voices from the African American Oral History Project. Story Bridges, 2013; 9780988763104; $14.99. This is a beautifully written insightful look into what it's like to live and grow up in Oakland from the voices of its young African American boys between the ages of 10 to 18.