'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Tuesday 29 March 2011

KBR Recommends: Young Adult Reads

In 1938, Edith and her family joined the many Jewish people forced to leave their homes to escape the Nazis. In a desperate bid for survival, Edith was entrusted to the care of a children's home in Moissac, France, where other Jewish children were hiding. All the people of the town promised to keep the children's identity a secret. Could they possibly succeed? Would Edith ever see her family again?

A dramatic and moving account of one girl's experience during World War II.

This is the true story of Edith Schwalb.

Title: Hiding Edith
Author: Kathy Kacer
Publisher: Allen and Unwin, $15.99 RRP
Publication Date: February 2011
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781742375298
Type: Non-fiction

This book is available online

As the Scout sails from England, Kit Lovell cries for the life she is leaving and the life she could have had. Her father was a sea captain who went down with his ship before she was born. Now her mother is to marry a stranger, a lighthouse keeper in the remote colony of South Australia.

But it soon becomes clear to Kit that this voyage across the world's vast oceans is setting something loose inside her, something she doesn't understand. Her secret encounters with Angel, a mysterious young sailor, seem at one moment completely bewildering and at another crystal clear. And her friendship with the bold and brash young Clarissa is opening her eyes in ways she never thought possible.

Yet Kit's internal turmoil is nothing compared to the power of the sea in all its moods as the Scout's melting pot of passengers and crew sail into an adventure that will change all their lives forever.

Title: Scout
Author: Nicole Pluss
Publisher: Penguin, $17.95 RRP
Publication Date: August 2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780143204589
Type: Novel

This book is available online

In Cairo, fifteen-year-old Aaron makes a living out of gathering garbage - as a member of the despised Zabbaleen, this is his fate. But Aaron has dreams. Every day he dreams of Rachel, who looks after the ponies who pull the carts piled high with garbage to and from the slum they call home. He dreams that they will make a life together, far from the smells, cruelty and squalor of their daily existence.

Aaron′s skill at sorting glass is the only thing that keeps him alive. His mother is dead, and his stepfather and stepbrother Elijah subject him to an endless regime of bullying and abuse. He is stuck with them - where else would he go? Shareen, the local beauty, is at once a source of excitement and torment to him. And always there is Rachel - serene, and seemingly untouchable.

When Aaron steals some goods from a shop, bringing shame to his family, he is forced to work for the medical wasters - the loewst of the low, who risk their lives sorting through the piles of rubbish from the hospitals.

Just as it seems he can sink no further, Aaron makes a choice that will change his life. And when Rachel looks at him in a new light, there may be hope for him, after all.

Title: The Glass Collector
Author: Anna Perera
Publisher: HarperCollins, $19.99 RRP
Publication Date: March 2011
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780732291532
Type: Novel

This book is available online

Anna was looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. So she's less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris-until she meets Etienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, Etienne has it all . . . including a serious girlfriend.

But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss?

Title: Anna and the French Kiss
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Publisher: Penguin, $19.95 RRP
Publication Date: January 2011
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780143206262
Type: Novel

This book is available online

He looked to the sky, praying for rain, a downpour, some sign from the heavens that he should refuse the abomination contained in that flask. But all he saw was the bloated white face of the moon smiling down on him …

And the sky around it was cold and clear and black …

They made their circle of blood. And only the moon witnessed the slaughter that followed.

For Jamie Mackie, summer holidays in the coastal town of Rocky Head mean surfing, making money, and good times at the local music festival. But this year, vampires are on the festival's line-up … fulfilling a pact made on the wreck of the Batavia, four hundred years ago. If their plans succeed, nobody in Rocky Head will survive to see out the new year.

Title: Saltwater Vampires
Author: Kirsty Eagar
Publisher: Penguin, $19.95 RRP
Publication Date: August 2010
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780143011460
Type: Novel

This book is available online