The Forgotten Girls by Sara Blaedel

Denmark’s “Queen of Crime” offers a tense, well-paced novel set in a forested region populated mostly with vacation cabins and a few permanent homes. Detective Louise Ricks has been newly appointed to head the Special Search Team–a missing persons task force that also handles cases with unidentified victims. Her first case turns out to be quite a puzzle: the body of a middle-aged woman is found at the bottom of a cliff. Her death was caused by the fall, but she was in terrible condition before that–barefoot, with torn-up feet, malnourished, dressed in a tattered smock,  she bears a grotesque burn scar from on one side of her face to her shoulder. Despite this unique feature no one comes forward to ID her. The case is not categorized as homicide, but Louise’s instincts drive her to re-open cold case files from 25 years earlier. With her new partner–the laid back, hard drinking, but oh-so charming Eik Norsdstrom, Louise has to overlook his flaws and try to follow a twisty trail of clues while trying not to let sad memories of her own past affect her performance. The discoveries Louise and Eik slowly uncover make for a gripping and complicated case involving children shunted to homes for the handicapped, criminal child abuse, secrets and cover-ups reaching from the past to the present.


Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett

Free will and the freedom to use it are all that Sancia , twenty year old resourceful orphan, wants. Oh, and enough money to buy food for herself. This latest thieving job is way overpaid so she is sure to have enough food for a good long time.  It sounds like it will be easy. The fantasy equivalent of mad car chases, lots of shoot ’em up, constant action and surprises follow. What she was sent to steal turns out to be much more important than anyone knows. And much much much more trouble. It could destroy the world as they know it. This is Part One of a trilogy. I can’t wait for Part Two.


Upcoming YA Books – Spring 2019

A lot of exciting titles are coming out this spring. We will new books from some of our favorite authors, additions to popular series, and some promising debuts. Here are few to keep on an eye and place your holds today!

Internment by Samira Ahmed

March 19

Set in a horrifying near-future United States, seventeen-year-old Layla Amin and her parents are forced into an internment camp for Muslim American citizens. With the help of newly made friends also trapped within the internment camp, her boyfriend on the outside, and an unexpected alliance, Layla begins a journey to fight for freedom, leading a revolution against the internment camp’s Director and his guards. Heart-racing and emotional, Internment challenges readers to fight complicit silence that exists in our society today.

Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan

April 2

A girl who can speak to gods must save her people without destroying herself. A prince in danger must decide who to trust. A boy with a monstrous secret waits in the wings. Together, they must assassinate the king and stop the war. In a centuries-long war where beauty and brutality meet, their three paths entwine in a shadowy world of spilled blood and mysterious saints, where a forbidden romance threatens to tip the scales between dark and light. Wicked Saints is the thrilling start to Emily A. Duncan’s devastatingly Gothic Something Dark and Holy trilogy.

The Red Scrolls of Magic by Cassandra Clare

April 9

All Magnus Bane wanted was a vacation—a lavish trip across Europe with Alec Lightwood, the Shadowhunter who against all odds is finally his boyfriend. But as soon as the pair settles in Paris, an old friend arrives with news about a demon-worshipping cult called the Crimson Hand that is bent on causing chaos around the world. A cult that was apparently founded by Magnus himself. Years ago. As a joke. Now Magnus and Alec must race across Europe to track down the Crimson Hand and its elusive new leader before the cult can cause any more damage. As if it wasn’t bad enough that their romantic getaway has been sidetracked, demons are now dogging their every step, and it is becoming harder to tell friend from foe. As their quest for answers becomes increasingly dire, Magnus and Alec will have to trust each other more than ever—even if it means revealing the secrets they’ve both been keeping.

Finale: A Caraval Novel by Stephanie Garber

May 7

Welcome, welcome to Finale, the third and final book in Stephanie Garber’s #1 New York Times bestselling Caraval series! A love worth fighting for. A dream worth dying for. An ending worth waiting for. It’s been two months since the Fates were freed from a deck of cards, two months since Legend claimed the throne for his own, and two months since Tella discovered the boy she fell in love with doesn’t really exist. With lives, empires, and hearts hanging in the balance, Tella must decide if she’s going to trust Legend or a former enemy. After uncovering a secret that upends her life, Scarlett will need to do the impossible. And Legend has a choice to make that will forever change and define him. Caraval is over, but perhaps the greatest game of all has begun. There are no spectators this time: only those who will win, and those who will lose everything. Welcome, welcome to Finale. All games must come to an end.

 


To Night Owl from Dogfish by Holly Goldberg Sloan and Meg Wolitzer

Hilarious and sweet, this epistolary novel keeps the reader turning the pages. The premise is adorable: two 12 years old girls from opposite sides of the country are sent to the same summer camp by their single gay dads who are planning to woo each other on once in a lifetime trip to China. Bette and Avery are Dogfish and Night Owl. They refuse to speak to each other at camp (because their dads want them to learn to be sisters) so they email each other. Nothing goes as the girls (or their dads) plan but the story is heartwarming — and the double cross of the reader at the end is killer!


A Few Drops of Red: The Chicago Race Riot of 1919 by Claire Hartfield

Dive into Chicago’s past with relevance to the racial issues still facing Chicago and other communities today with this nonfiction read. A Few Drops of Red, sets the stage of all of the different events that led up to the race riots;  from immigrants from Europe and  southern Blacks coming to Chicago, to the meat packing industry changing and booming.  Hartfield introduces a variety of interesting figures like Ida B. Wells – Barnett, a trailblazing Black journalist and advocate or Gustavus Swift who became a giant in the meatpacking industry.  The story is laid out well making it a gripping and tense read complete with pictures from the time period.


The Bridge Home


Lovely. Amazingly, a solidly middle grade story about escaping child abuse by running away on the streets of a city in India. Join the friends Viji, Ruku, Muthi and Arul as they create family and provide for each other until tragedy strikes. Ms. Venkatraman is able to convey all this in a child’s voice and at a child’s level.  One of the best books I have read in 2019.


The Matchmaker’s List by Sonya Lalli

A modern Indian Canadian woman bows to her beloved grandmother’s desire to play matchmaker for her, moving in the direction of an arranged marriage, with disastrous results. Sonya Lalli excels in sharing the experience of being a 20 – 30 something Canadian of Indian extraction coping with both traditional and modern pressures all at once. A solid New Adult choice!


The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After by Clemantine Wamariya

Clemantine was a demanding, curious six year old living in Kigali when the Rwandan massacre started. She had no idea why the adults started whispering and people she knew began to disappear. Her parents sent Clemantine and her older sister to stay with their Grandmother, the first in a long line of peregrinations that in the next six years covered their trek from refugee camp to refugee camp and through seven countries. Feeling dismissed, invisible, hungry, scared, the two girls survived as best they could, occasionally benefiting from the rare decency of individuals but more often suffering from neglect and violence. Interspersed with the story of her horrifying voyage are the chapters about what happened to her when she was finally accepted as a refugee to the United States and began to live with a warm and loving Kenilworth family. This is a description of the inhuman toll visited on one child, suffering from PTSD but trying to fit in wherever she landed. Clemantine is now a human rights advocate, sharing her story with those who will listen.

 


The Library Book by Susan Orlean

Don’t be fooled by the title. This is not a book about a particular library book. It’s a book about a particular library and libraries in general. Orlean, critically acclaimed for “The Orchid Thief,” has re-opened the case of the catastrophic fire of 1986 that immolated most of the contents of the large Los Angeles Central Library. In doing so Orlean has given us a beautifully written exploration of everything “library,” a surprisingly compelling subject! A history, a look behind the scenes, a remembrance of her childhood love of libraries, a tour of the stacks, how books are bought, cataloged, shelved, the staff, the emotional attachment people have to their libraries, all this is deftly woven into an examination of the unsolved arson case–if it was arson–and the prime suspect. This excellent book is a moving and cogent argument for maintaining libraries and for the recognition of their evolving value to societies world wide.


The Lake on Fire by Rosellen Brown

Chaya and Asher’s story circles around and runs through the 1893 Columbian Exposition. The two, immigrants from the old country, flee the midwest farm where they have landed to come to find their fortune in the big city. Chicago, recovered from the Fire of 1871, is booming. The factories, stockyards, sweatshops, brothels employ thousands of recent immigrants, Chaya amongst them. Asher is too young to legitimately work but he is a genius, light-fingered and hungry for knowledge. He earns money or food by performing first for the rich at their soirees and then on the Midway. Chaya falls in love with an improbable choice which causes her to question where she belongs and where her loyalties lie. Marshall Field’s, Jane Addams, the Anarchists, Mayor Carter Harrison, the Prairie Avenue mansions, Dearborn Station, Glossip’s Street Guide, all lend credibility and familiarity to the scene. And we wait for something to blow…