Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld, a Best Book for Young Adults

Aleksandar Ferdinand is a prince and heir to the throne — but that doesn’t mean a whole lot when your own people want you dead. On the eve of the Great War (WWI), the Austro-Hungarian Empire uses their Clankers, great steam-driven iron machines filled to the brim with guns and ammunition, while the British Darwinists get their fabricated animals ready for war.

Clanker Aleksandar is on the run with nothing but his clanker, a crew of loyal men, and an unknown payload to keep them alive — but he’s not the only one with something to hide. British Darwinist Deryn Sharp, a brilliant airman, has a secret as well… mainly, that she’s a woman hiding in an all-male navy.

The British Leviathan, the most formidable being in the sky, is a living airship — and it soon finds itself in the middle of more than its creators ever dreamed of it as a Deryn and Aleksandar, sworn enemies by country, cross paths, bringing them both on board the Leviathan and praying that the world as they know it does not fall into the Great War.

–Joe Kaufeld, Allen County Public Library Teen Advisory Board

Mine was The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan, a 2010 Best Book for Young Adults.

No one enters Mary’s village and no one leaves. To do that, one would have to face the Forest of Hands and Teeth, the forest where the Unconsecrated lurk in the darkness, ready to bite and tear and kill. If you get bitten by one of the Unconsecrated you become Infected and have nothing before you but your death and Return.

Mary lives in fear day after day, waiting for the inevitable breach of the fences that protect the village. But one day, an Outsider stumbles upon the village, proof that life still exists beyond the Forest. The existence of the Outsider brings Mary hope. She becomes determined to escape the village and the Sisterhood by finding life outside. With her friends, she embarks on a journey through the forest, a journey that will end in either her salvation or her demise.

The Forest of Hands and Teeth puts a new spin on the idea of a zombie apocalypse. Read More →

Imagine this: all your life, you’ve been underestimated. You’ve been patted, petted, cooed over and kept in an imaginary cage. Always back by curfew, only had one boyfriend. You’re never allowed to do anything “cool”, and you go to one of the most prestigious academies in Massachusetts. Oh, yeah- and your family calls you “Bunny Rabbit”.

That’s the life of Frankie Landau-Banks. And she’s had her fill of it.
This year, all that is going to change. Read More →

It is often said that it takes a village to raise a child. In this book, it takes an unusual village to raise an orphaned child: a graveyard full of spirits from all walks of life and different time periods. Each ghost brings new adventures to young Bod’s life. Meanwhile, the murderers of Bod’s family are determined to kill Bod in order to prevent the fulfillment of a prophecy. Read More →


‘ Eternal by Cynthia Leitich Smith, a novel set in the same parallel world as her previous book Tantalize, is not the typical vampire romance. Instead it is a breath of fresh air as it explores a new fantastical pairing.

The story is told by Miranda, a high-schooler turned vampire (“Eternal”) princess, and Zachary, her adoring guardian angel. After Miranda joins the legions of the undead, she is adopted by the King of the Mantle of Dracul, otherwise known as the reigning Dracula. Because Zachary reveals himself as an angel while attempting to protect Miranda the night she is taken, he is stripped of his wings. Read More →


Ellie has wondered for two years about her older sister Nina, who disappeared randomly one day. Everyone thinks Nina just ran away, but Ellie decides to look for Nina, since no one else will. Her search leads her to Sean, who empathizes over the loss of a sibling. Together, they begin a cross-country hunt for Nina, tracing credit card slips and phone numbers, hoping to discover who Nina really was. Read More →

Geek Charming by Robin Palmer
What would it be like to be popular?
Josh needs to know. He’s making a documentary about popularity for college. And since he was the savior of her drowning purse, Dylan, queen of the A-crowd, is in on it. But when the camera turns on, Dylan’s perfect world starts breaking apart, and her diva mask is shattered. Will Josh’s camera capture the real Dylan or the fake?
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Paper Towns
Paper Towns by John Green is a fantastic book and a wild ride. Green takes the audience through the adventures Quentin ‘Q’ Jacobsen has with Margo Roth Spiegelman. Q is a very bright senior who is planning on attending Duke the following fall. He is fairly shy and mainly just talks to his band friends. However, he has always loved Margo from afar. One night Margo slips into Q’s room and she takes him on the craziest night of his life. The next day Margo disappears. Q is shocked but he finds clues that Margo left for him. He religiously follows the clues in search of Margo.
Read More →