Saturday, December 22, 2012

Best Young Adult Books of 2012

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Maybe the best-written young adult novel of 2012, John Green's The Fault in Our Stars is a humorous, heartbreaking take on terminal illness, friendship, and being alive. Known for his acute insight into the mind of teens, Green's newest novel is different from his other work, focusing instead on a female character whom he infuses with equal parts wit and charm. While the themes of the novel might be more suitable for older teens, those who like their books to have depth and more than a little gravity are sure to experience something achingly honest.

The Diviners by Libba Bray
Though Libba Bray's last couple books have focused more on social satire in the most hilarious way possible, her newest book is a return to the historical fantasy genre that got the Printz-Award winning author started. Featuring a cast of magical characters, the novel takes place in the roaring 20s and centers around a series of mysterious murders that lead back to a secret, powerful cult. While the book's length might be a deterrent to some readers, Bray always keeps the pace fast and the clues coming even faster.

Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver
Oliver's second installment of the Delirium trilogy picks up right where the first book left off. Now free of a society that "cures" its citizens from "deliria", a.k.a. love., Lena has to survive on her own without friends, food, or shelter. When she meets up with a derelict group on the outside, she's forced to make crucial decisions to ensure her survival. While I felt the book was not as gripping as its predecessor, I'm still eagerly looking forward to the series' finale in March.

Steve Jobs: The Man Who Thought Different by Karen Blumenthal
Essentially a condensed version of Walter Isaacson's epic biography, Steve Jobs: The Man Who Thought Different is a fast-paced sketch of the late Apple co-founder and CEO, Steve Jobs. Regardless of one's personal feelings on the Mac vs. PC debate, the book manages to capture the unique and curious mind behind one of the world's most well-known brands in short bursts of chapters that never feel long-winded or susceptible to hero-worship. Filled with photographs and quick fact boxes, it's great for reluctant readers and those that prefer non-fiction.

                                      Supergirl Mixtapes by Meagan Brothers
While the premise of this novels seems light-hearted at first glance -- Maria is sent to live with her estranged mother in New York City where she can finally spend her days roaming record stores -- the story actually delves into the complex issues of parenthood, individuality, dependence, and the inevitable trouble of keeping secrets. As in her previous novel, Debbie Harry Sings in French, Brothers gives her characters the freedom to make their own choices, inviting readers to experience the consequences of tough decisions and the difficult road to self-awareness.

-Written by Anna

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