Weekend Pick of January 1, 2022
Pick one of these great books!
Are your students looking for book recommendations?
Send them to browse through the picks for this or those from the previous years.
To begin a new year on a cheerful note, I suggest reading two novels that warm readers’ hearts with teenage love. However, there is so much more to these books that our adolescents, teachers, and librarians can discover in these selections.
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell (2013)
Set in the 1980s and drawing on important cultural artifacts of the time (e.g., cassette tapes, the WalkMan, comic books), Eleanor & Park provides a narrative of Park Sheridan and Eleanor Douglas following their first love and ultimate loss. This beautifully written novel introduces two tenth-grade adolescents, who are both outsiders among their peers, but are so different that no one would attempt to match them. Eleanor, with her red, curly hair, is “big and awkward,” and classmates don’t get tired of mocking her. Park is a quiet guy, who is always neat and tidy, likes music and comics. One day Eleanor sits next to Park on a school bus, their story begins. They grow to know and love each other. While they are smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, they are brave enough to try.
In her debut novel, Alexis Nedd tells a story of two teens, Emilia and Jake. A nerdy, almost perfect high school student and athlete, Emilia aims for an Ivy League college to meet her Puerto Rican parents’ high expectations; however, she has another passion – online gaming. She is a member of Team Fury, one of the best and highly competitive e-sports team. Jake is not as academically ambitious as Emilia, but is a devoted gamer himself. He belongs to Team Unity. The adolescent readers will be drawn to both characters learning about their desires, goals, and struggles. The novel feels relevant for young adult readers who enjoy sweet romance and video games, have plans for college, and think about their future.
Till next weekend,