Some of my favorite titles this summer:
1. Dumplin' by Julie Murphy - I listened to this wonderful book using the Overdrive App on my way to summer school. Wow. A truly refreshing tale of Willow Dean, an overweight girl who doesn't lack self-confidence until Bo, a boy she works with, kisses her. She fights the urge to make things 'formal', because she thinks - why would a guy like HIM want a girl like HER? Then, the story really takes a turn - she decides to partake in the Blue Bonnet Beauty Pageant, with her likes-to-keep-up-appearances mother, a former winner and now director of the Pageant. Get your hands on this one! I couldn't stop listening...
2. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon - After purchasing this book this past spring, and two of my students begging me to read it (after they read in less than 24 hours), I finally sat down and read it - in less than two days. Narrated from the perspective of Madeline, who suffers from SCID, a rare disease that makes her allergic to basically everything. But, (like Dumplin') she meets a boy that begins to change her world. This is a quick, unique read and overall, a great story.
3. The Book Thief by Mark Zusak - My favorite aspect of this book (that I'm currently listening to on audiobook in my car) is the narrator - Death. Told through his personified perspective, he spins a splendid tale of Liesel, a young German girl who relishes reading anything she can get her hands on and possesses a flair for stealing - stealing books. He shares her devastating circumstances and triumphant appetite for mischief even in the midst of WWII in Germany, as her and her foster family become forcefully entwined in the rise of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Regime. Zusak's creative language weaves into this story with ease and eloquence, leaving me entranced. (And often, wanting to stay in my car long after I arrive at my destination!) This one has been out for a while, but let it steal your time; it's worth it.