Teens recommend…TCC book selections from April

Here are the picks from April’s Teen Collection Connection (TCC) meeting! Check out the reviews, and find the recommended TCC books in our catalog

Annabelle G. recommends:

The Books of Elsewhere by Jacqueline West

Rating: 5/5 stars

Olive Dunwoody moves into a new house with three talking cats and paintings that come to life. However, it seems like her house has a dark secret that has existed for centuries. This is the first book of the books of Elsewhere Series. This is my favourite book series because the books are page turners that help me get out of all my reading stumps.

Stella by Starlight by Sharon M. Draper

Rating: 5/5 stars

Stella Mills is a young Black girl living in the South during the Great Depression and faces many hardships after the KKK return to her town. I really enjoy this book because it helps show the hardships people encountered in that time period and still experience today.

Isa B. recommends:

Eon” by Alison Goodman

I would rate this book 5/5. It is a mix of Asian mythology, fantasy and feminism. The main character struggles with surviving in a male dominant world and learns to be herself and kick butt in the world that assumes she is less than what she is. I highly recommend this book to people who struggle with finding books without romance


A Face Like Glass” by Frances Hardinge

I would rate this book a 5/5. This is a book about a human girl in a not so human world and her struggle with emotions being the key to everything. She has to survive in a world where everyone can basically read what she is thinking off her face while theirs are just stony. The character development in this book is amazing and is truly something unique.

Louise L. recommends:

The Sun Is Also A Star” by Nicola Yoon

Rating: 4.8/5 stars

This book was amazing to read! It talks about two teens who fall in love with each other in just 12 hours. Because of a drastic accident, they get separated forever, but they will never forget each other. This story shows that love at first sight still exists today!

Keeper Of The Lost Cities” by Shannon Messenger

Rating: 5/5

This book is about a girl who has mysterious powers. One day, a boy with strange blue eyes finds her. Together, they go on a thrilling adventure in another world! I would recommend this book to anyone who loves science fiction, mysteries and fantasy!

RJ recommends:

“They Both Die At The End” by Adam Silvera

They Both Die At The End” by Adam Silvera

This book is a story about two boys who both die at the end of the book, as the title suggests. Even though the end is spoiled from the beginning, the story is still gripping and unpredictable. The characters are amazingly human, and also somehow magical at the same time. Silvera captures the essence of what it means to fall in love, and how to be human. 

I also listened to this audiobook, and it was amazing. Totally recommend either the print or the audio version!

Sarah G. recommends:

The Selection” by Keira Cass

Rating: 4/5 stars

I was hesitant to start this series because I thought it was overhyped, but I promise it’s not. I’m a sucker for a good love triangle and this book has an excellent one. This book is about a teenager named America and her navigating a competition where the winner will marry royalty. However, America is in love with someone back home. I really like the world building in this book. After I finished The Selection I was left with some unanswered questions and wanted to read the next book, The Elite.

March: Book Two” by John Lewis

Rating: 4.5/5 stars

I had to read this graphic novel for school, but I ended up really liking it. I’m not usually a fan of graphic novels, but I thought this was really good. It follows the life of Representative John Lewis. It starts when he’s in college and follows his activity in the civil rights movement. I like how this book contrasts the past and the present.

“This is a Robbery: The World’s Biggest Art Heist” –  Netflix

Rating: 5/5 stars

This documentary follows the Isabella Gardner Museum art heist and its aftermath. I’m a big fan of art and crime/mafia stuff, so this documentary was perfect for me. It’s very interesting how an art heist connects to the crime world. I also think that another reason the mystery is so captivating is because it still isn’t solved. I went to the art museum in 2019 and the paintings are still missing. I recommend this for a more mature audience, some of the details and images are intense.

Sanjita B. recommends:

They Both Die At The End” by Adam Silvera

Rating: 4.5/5 stars

Rufus and Mateo, 2 teenage boys living in NYC get a call from a company called Death-Cast that tells them that they are going to die that day. That day Mateo and Rufus become friends through a special app and they bond over their eventful last day. Throughout the book there is a message of living your life to the fullest and just appreciating the little things in life. I would rate this book about 4.5 stars only because there were a few parts that I found a bit boring otherwise I really enjoyed it. Although the ending is in the title it was still a very sweet and heartbreaking story.

Two Can Keep A Secret” by Karen M. McManus

Rating: 4/5

Ellery and Ezra Corcoran move in with their grandmother in the town of Echo Ridge, where her mom grew up. What they don’t know about the town is all the mysterious secrets and past crimes it has. History begins to repeat itself as another girl goes missing in the town just like their aunt who went missing 5 years ago.  As the book progresses all the secrets and mysteries begin to unravel while the twins and their friends try to figure out the kidnapper. Overall this is such a great book and I could not put it down but, I found that some of the reveals/plot twists were a bit underwhelming. 

Suntali D. recommends:

“River of Dreams” by Lynn Kurland

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

I’m nearing the end of this lovely tale and despite the slower start that may leave the audience a bit confused, the plot picks up quickly and it’s easy to enjoy the characters and their interactions. This book is mostly a typical magical/fantasy world set in a more medieval time, but the structure and magic system is very unique! The action and mystery drive a fascinating plot that reveals the answers bit by bit using suspense to its fullest. 

The Arm of the Starfish by Madeleine L’Engle 

Rating: 5/5 Stars 

 I read this book a while back, however the book and the ones that come after (Dragon in the Water and House Like a Lotus) stood out in my mind, and I thought I’d recommend them! Madeleine L’engle is the author of A Wrinkle in Time, and I love her writing styles and the ways she writes her characters. The Arm of the Starfish has a super fascinating side about marine biology and travel as the character goes to a remote island near Portugal. The science and cultural aspects are woven in well, and the book reintroduces an old character from the 5th book of the Wrinkle in Time series (An Acceptable Time). It was super interesting to see a character again in another storyline, and the mystery aspect that dictates the entire plot keeps the book captivating and suspenseful. There’s also an interesting incorporation of morals and the archetype of right v.s. wrong. 

What is the TCC? TCC is a volunteer group of teens that love to read and discuss books, movies, and music. Every month they get together to pick books for our teen collection and write short book reviews. Want to join? Then apply today!

– Contributed by Renée, Librarian – Teen Services

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