Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Ask the Tank

At the April meeting of the Teen Think Tank (the Library's teen advisory board), I asked the members in attendance what their genre strengths are, and what titles they could recommend. They said their strengths were science fiction; zombie/survival apocalypse; trashy romance; historical fiction; heavy books; versatility; and science-fantasy. So, here, straight up from the Tank, are a few titles they recommend you read: 
Daniel  recommends   :

Red Rising, by Pierce Brown, 2014. A tale set in a bleak future society torn by class divisions follows the experiences of secret revolutionary Darrow, who after witnessing his wife's execution by an oppressive government joins a revolutionary cell and attempts to infiltrate an elite military academy.

Ready Player One, by Ernest Cline, 2011. Immersing himself in a mid-twenty-first-century technological virtual utopia to escape an ugly real world of famine, poverty, and disease, Wade Watts joins an increasingly violent effort to solve a series of puzzles by the virtual world's creator.

Jumper series, by Steven Gould, 1992-2014. Jumper, first book in series: Blessed with the unusual ability to "jump"--to teleport himself to any place on Earth that he has been to before--Davy is determined to locate others like himself, but interference from the government could prevent him from doing so.

Game Slaves, by Gard Skinner, 2014. "A highly intelligent group of video game enemy non-player characters (NPC) begins to doubt they are merely codes in a machine. Their search for answers leads them to a gruesome discovery"-- Provided by publisher.

Ella recommends  :

Ashes trilogy, by Ilsa J. Bick, 2011-2013. Ashes, first book in trilogy: Alex, a resourceful 17-year-old running from her incurable brain tumor, Tom, who has left the war in Afghanistan, and Ellie, an angry eight-year-old, join forces after an electromagnetic pulse sweeps through the sky and kills most of the world's population, turning some of those who remain into zombies and giving the others superhuman senses.

The Girl With All the Gifts, by M. R. Carey, 2014. Not every gift is a blessing. Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don't like her. She jokes that she won't bite. But they don't laugh. Melanie is a very special girl. 

Walking Dead series, Robert Kirkman, 2009-2015. Police officer Rick Grimes is shot on the job and wakes up a month later to find that the world that he knows is gone. Zombies have taken over and are killing and eating those who are still alive. He sets out toward Atlanta in the hope that his family is still alive and endures many horrors along the way.

Monument 14 series, by Emmy Laybourne, 2012-2014. Monument 14, first book in series: A group of kids trapped together in a chain superstore build a refuge for themselves, as a series of disasters, from a monster hailstorm to a chemical weapons spill, seems to be tearing the world apart.

Benny Imura series, by Jonathan Maberry, 2010-2013.  Rot & Ruin, first book in series: In a post-apocalyptic world where fences and border patrols guard the few people left from the zombies that have overtaken civilization, fifteen-year-old Benny Imura is finally convinced that he must follow in his older brother's footsteps and become a bounty hunter.

Jeffrey recommends :

The Night She Disappeared, by April Henry, 2012. Told from various viewpoints, Gabie and Drew set out to prove that their missing co-worker Kayla is not dead, and to find her before she is, while the police search for her body and the man who abducted her. Realistic fiction, Suspense.

Winterspell, by Claire Legrande, 2014. To find her abducted father and keep her sister safe from the lecherous politicians of 1899 New York City, 17-year-old Clara must journey to the wintry kingdom of Cane, where Anise, queen of the faeries, has ousted the royal family in favor of her own totalitarian, anti-human regime. Historical Fantasy.

Josh  recommends  :

V for Vendetta, by Alan Moore, 2005. In a near-future Britain ruled by a totalitarian regime, Evey is rescued from certain death by a masked vigilante calling himself "V," a beguiling and charismatic figure who launches a one-man crusade against government tyranny and oppression. Suspense, graphic format.

Watchmen, by Alan Moore, 1987. Exceptional graphic artwork brings to life the story of the Watchmen as they race against time to find a killer, with the fate of the world hanging in the balance. Suspense, graphic format.

Persepolis, by Marjane Satrapi, 2003. The great-granddaughter of Iran's last emperor and the daughter of ardent Marxists describes growing up in Tehran in a country plagued by political upheaval and vast contradictions between public and private life. Autobiography, graphic format.

Slaughterhouse-Five: or, The Children's Crusade : A Duty-Dance with Death, by Kurt Vonnegut, 1969. Billy Pilgrim, a chaplain's assistant during the Second World War, returns home only to be kidnapped by aliens from the planet Tralfamadore, who teach him that time is an eternal present. Science Fiction.

Nathan G. recommends  

My Friend Dahmer: a graphic novel, by Derf Backderf, 2012. In graphic novel format, the author offers an account of growing up in the same schools as Jeffrey Dahmer, who went on to become one of the most notorious serial killers and cannibals in United States history. Biography.
Avatar Chronicles series, by Conor Kostick, 2006-2011. Epic, first book in series: On New Earth, a world based on a video role-playing game, fourteen-year-old Erik pursuades his friends to aid him in some unusual gambits in order to save Erik's father from exile and safeguard the futures of each of their families. Science Fiction, Dystopian.

Forgotten Realms. Icewind Dale trilogy, by R. A. Salvatore, 1988-1990. The Crystal Shard, is the first book in this trilogy, which is within the larger Forgotten Realms series.  Bruenor, a dwarf, Drizzt, a dark elf, and Wulfgar, a barbarian warrior, try to unite the people of Ten-Towns to face the dangerous magic of the crystal shard. Fantasy

Lockstep, by Karl Schroeder, 2014. 17-year-old Toby wakes from hibernation to find himself lost in space. Welcome to the Lockstep Empire, where civilization is kept alive by careful hibernation. Here cold sleeps can last decades and waking moments mere weeks. Toby wakes to discover that he's been asleep for 14,000 years, and is shocked to learn that the Empire is ruled by its founding family: his own. Science Fiction; Space Opera.

Skinjacker trilogy, by Neal Shusterman, 2006-2011. Everlost, first book in series: When Nick and Allie are killed in a car crash, they end up in Everlost, or limbo for lost souls, where although Nick is satisfied, Allie will stop at nothing--even skinjacking--to break free. Fantasy.

Trust Me I'm Lying, by Mary Elizabeth Summer, 2014. Having learned to be a master con artist from her father, Julep Dupree pays expenses at her exclusive high school by fixing things for fellow students, but she will need their help when her father disappears. Suspense.

California Bones series, by Greg Van Eekhout, 2014-2015. California Bones, first book in series: Years after swallowing a kraken bone fragment and then witnessing the killing of his magician father, Daniel endures a life of thievery until his crime-boss uncle compels him to steal his father's sword and fight a corrupt regime. Urban Fantasy.

Nathan M. recommends 

The Red Badge of Courage, by Stephen Crane, 1895. Henry Fleming, a young Union soldier, struggles with his conflicting emotions about violence, death, and the nature of bravery in this ironic, skeptical account of the Civil War.

The Fort: a novel of the Revolutionary War, by Bernard Cornwell, 2010. After the British establish a fort on the Penobscot River, the Massachusetts patriots--among them General Peleg Wadsworth and Colonel Paul Revere--mount an expedition to oust the redcoats.

The Things They Carried, by Tim O'Brien, 1990. Heroic young men carry the emotional weight of their lives to war in Vietnam in a patchwork account of a modern journey into the heart of darkness.

All Quiet on the Western Front, by Erich Maria Remarque, 1929. The testament of Paul Baumer, who enlists with his classmates in the German army of World War I, illuminates the savagery and futility of war.

The Killer Angels, by Michael Shaara, 1974. Book 2 in the Civil War trilogy by Shaara. Robert E. Lee and James Longstreet tell the Southern view of the battle at Gettysburg while Colonel Joshua Chamberlain and General John Buford present the Northern view.