A Librarian Reads…

Verify by Joelle Charbonneau

Meri always dreamed of following in her mother’s footsteps as an artist for the City Pride program. That dream was cut short when her mother was killed in an accident. But really, it had been dwindling for a while, since her mother started acting distant. Now Meri’s world revolves around trying to keep her father sober and looking for meaning in her mother’s final set of paintings. But when she is given a word on a piece of paper—actual paper—she sets off a chain reaction that leads her to question everything she’s ever known.

Recommended for readers in high school and up who enjoy dystopian stories.

* Book listened to on audio CD

Featured Series

Gatekeepers by Anthony Horowitz

Sent to live in a foster home in a remote Yorkshire village, Matt, a troubled fourteen-year-old English boy, uncovers an evil plot involving witchcraft and the site of an ancient stone circle.

1) Raven’s Gate

2) Evil Star

3) Nightrise

4) Necropolis

5) Oblivion

What’s New?

Check out these new titles in the Teen Corner at the Moline Public Library. Click on the title to go to the catalog to find the book or place a hold.

What Kind of Girl by Alyssa B. Sheinmel
It all started when Mike Parker’s girlfriend showed up with a bruise on her face. Or, more specifically, when she walked into the principal’s office and said Mike hit her. But the students have questions. Obviously, if it’s true, Mike should be expelled. But is it true? Some girls want to rally for his expulsion—and some want to rally around Mike.

Found by Joseph Bruchac
On his way to teach at Camp Seven Generations, a Native outdoor school, Nick witnesses a murder and then is thrown off a train. Although his pursuers have modern technology, Nick has the teachings of his Abenaki elders. In addition to the skills he’s learned, he has an ally in the natural world around him.

Into the Pit by Scott Cawthon (Five Nights at Freddy’s: Fazbear Frights, Book One)
What do you wish for most? Oswald wishes his summer wasn’t so boring, Sarah wishes to be beautiful, and Millie wishes she could just disappear from the face of the earth. But in the twisted world of Five Nights at Freddy’s, their hearts’ deepest desires have an unexpected cost.

The Feminist Agenda of Jemima Kincaid by Kate Hattemer
Jemima Kincaid is a feminist, and she thinks you should be one too. Her private school is laden with problematic traditions, but the worst of all is prom. Then she’s named to Senior Triumvirate, along with two uber-popular kids, and the three must organize prom. Jemima proposes a Last Chance Dance: every student privately submits a list of crushes to a website that pairs them with any mutual matches.

Shadow of the Batgirl by Sarah Kuhn (Graphic Novel)
Cassandra is the daughter of super-villains and a living weapon trained from birth to be the ultimate assassin. But that doesn’t mean she has to stay that way, right? After a soul-shattering moment that sends Cass reeling, she learns everything she can about her favorite hero–Batgirl. But Batgirl hasn’t been seen in Gotham for years, and when Cass’s father threatens the world she has grown to love, she’ll have to step out of the shadows and overcome that voice inside her head telling her she can never be a hero.

A Librarian Reads…

Almost American Girl by Robin Ha

Chuna is happy living in South Korea with her mother in the 1990s. So when a trip to visit friends in Alabama turns into a permanent stay with a new stepfather, she is devastated. Her new stepsister and step-cousins already know about American life, and other than advice to change her name to Robin, they are no help. As Robin gradually learns English, she feels even more out of place than before. Knowing how upset she is, her mother finds her a cartoon drawing class where Robin finally makes some real friends. But just as she starts to settle in, everything changes again.

This illustrated memoir highlights the difficulties immigrants face in adjusting to a new language and a new way of life. Robin has the added difficulty of a new family, but her love of drawing helps her in even the darkest hours. Recommended for readers in middle school in up with an interest in immigrant stories and biographies of artists.

2020 Alex Award Winners


The Alex Awards are given to ten books written for adults that have special appeal to young adults, ages 12 through 18. The winning titles are selected from the previous year’s publishing. The Alex Awards were first given annually beginning in 1998 and became an official ALA award in 2002.

The award is sponsored by the Margaret A. Edwards Trust. Edwards pioneered young adult library services and worked for many years at the Enoch Pratt Library in Baltimore. Her work is described in her book Fair Garden and the Swarm of Beasts, and over the years she has served as an inspiration to many librarians who serve young adults. The Alex Awards are named after Edwards, who was called “Alex” by her friends.


A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World by C. A. Fletcher
In a dystopian future, where the world’s population is believed to be only in the thousands, Griz lives on an isolated island. When a charismatic stranger arrives and absconds with one of the family’s beloved dogs, the 16-year-old embarks on a quest to get her back.

Do You Dream of Terra-Two? by Temi Oh
A crew of 10 astronauts, 6 of whom are teens, set off on a 23-year journey to begin settling an uninhabited planet known as Terra-Two. This character-driven sci-fi novel will draw teens into its orbit with interpersonal conflict.

Dominicana by Angie Cruz
In 1965, 15-year-old Ana Cancion leaves the Dominican Republic married to a man twice her age and eventually discovers her own voice in Washington Heights, New York. Though historical fiction, this powerful immigrant story is increasingly relevant today.

Gender Queer: A Memoir by Maia Kobabe
Kobabe’s path to understanding eir gender and sexuality comes into beautiful focus in this graphic memoir, expressively illustrated with retro colors and simple lines. Readers will recognize a kindred spirit in Kobabe and/or gain insight into what it’s like to identify outside of the cisgender/heterosexual “norm.”

High School by Sara Quin and Tegan Quin
Critically acclaimed indie rock duo Tegan and Sara Quin lay bare their teenage experiences, the oscillating euphoria and scintillation of first love, the jarring process of finding one’s identity, and early forays into making music in this gorgeous dual memoir.

In Waves by AJ Dungo
In this beautiful graphic memoir, perfectly cast in muted beach tones, Dungo interweaves his story of first love with his girlfriend’s passion for surfing, her heroism in the face of cancer, and a primer on the history of surfing.

Middlegame by Seanan McGuire
Roger and Dodger are twins, created in a lab in order to bestow their creator with the power to shape reality—but only if they don’t figure out how to manifest that power for themselves first.

The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead
Idealistic Elwood and cynical Turner form an unlikely bond at Nickel Academy, a corrupt 1960s reform school, as they endure the abuse meted out by the sadistic warden. Their heart-wrenching story of physical and mental survival is based on the real-life experiences of children at the former Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys.

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
In this quirky political rom-com, First Son Alex fakes a friendship with longtime rival Prince Henry of Britain when an incendiary photo of them is leaked to the tabloids. A genuine romance blossoms between the two, but it must be kept secret for the sake of Alex’s mother’s presidential reelection campaign.

The Swallows by Lisa Lutz
The arrival of a new teacher with a complicated past ignites a student rebellion against Stonebridge Academy’s misogynistic culture, which has gone unchecked for years.

What’s New?

Check out these new titles in the Teen Corner at the Moline Public Library. Click on the title to go to the catalog to find the book or place a hold.

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson (A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder, Book One)
Five years ago, Andie was murdered by Sal Singh. The police know he did it. Everyone in town knows he did it. But having grown up in the same small town that was consumed by the murder, Pippa isn’t so sure. When she chooses the case as the topic for her final year project, she starts to uncover secrets that someone in town desperately wants to stay hidden.

Where the World Ends by Geraldine McCaughrean
In the summer of 1727, a group of men and boys are put ashore on a remote sea stac to harvest birds for food. No one returns to collect them. Why? Surely nothing but the end of the world can explain why they have been abandoned to endure storms, starvation and terror. And how can they survive, housed in stone and imprisoned on every side by the ocean?

Wildfire by Carrie Mac
Annie and Pete are heading out on a ten-day backpacking trip through the mountains of Washington State, ending at Fire Camp, where they’ll learn to fight the area’s growing wildfire problem. A freak climbing accident interrupts their progress, and as the wildfires close in and smoke envelops them, Annie and Pete wander farther from the trail.

How to Build a Heart by Maria Padian
All Izzy wants is to feel like she really belongs somewhere. When her widowed mom moves their family to Virginia, all her dreams start clicking into place. She likes her new school and her new athletic and popular boyfriend. And best of all: Izzy’s family has been selected by Habitat for Humanity to build and move into a brand-new house. Izzy is this close to the community and permanence she’s been searching for, until all the secret pieces of her life begin to collide.

The Queen’s Assassin by Melissa de la Cruz (Queen’s Secret, Book One)
Caledon is the Renovia’s deadliest weapon. He’s also bound to the Queen by an impossible vow–to find the missing Deian Scrolls, the fount of all magical history and knowledge. Shadow has been training all her life to follow in the footsteps of her mother and aunts–to become skilled enough to join the ranks of the Guild. When a surprise attack brings Shadow and Cal together, they’re forced to team up as assassin and apprentice to hunt down a new sinister threat to Renovia.

A Librarian Reads…

Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi

Aria lives in a nearly perfect world. Sure, the pod is small and dull, but that’s why they have the realms, virtual places where anything and everything is possible. She has no idea why anyone would want the real world. But when a party goes terribly wrong, she finds herself out in that world. There she meets Perry, an outsider with an unusual gift of scent and sight. He is searching for his nephew, who has been taken by Aria’s people. They team up, reluctantly, but soon learn they have more in common than both of their people would have them believe.

Science fiction blended with romance, this book is recommended to readers in grades 8 and up.

* Book listed to as e-audio through the Libby app