Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Love Is In the Air...Or Maybe Not...

Looking for a great teen book with either low or no romance?  Romance for teen readers is often a great part of the story, but there is an an equal amount of teens who don't want to read romance.  Here is a short list of go-to reading recommendations for both types of readers:

Books with no romance, focused on a variety of topics:

Contagion by Erin Bowman

Book Jacket

Responding to a distress call on the distant planet of Achlys, Thea Sadik and her search-and-rescue crew are confronted by a zombie-like outbreak that forces them to uncover a monstrous enemy.

The Girl From the Well by Rin Chupeco

Book Jacket

Okiku has wandered the world for centuries, freeing the innocent ghosts of the murdered-dead and taking the lives of killers with the vengeance they are due, but when she meets Tark she knows the moody teen with the series of intricate tattoos is not a monster and needs to be freed from the demonic malevolence that clings to him.

The Cheerleaders by Kara Thomas

Book Jacket

The surviving sister of a cheerleader who was one of five girls who died violently years earlier realizes during a memory-laden memorial that the tragedies may have been more sinister.

Books with low romance, minor sub-plots, and brief scenes of romance:  

You Don't Know Me But I Know You by Rebecca Barrow

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Ignoring a letter written years earlier by her biological mother, Audrey attempts to fill in the missing pieces of her life until an unexpected pregnancy compels her to learn the truth about the history and choices that led to her own existence.

500 Words or Less by Juleah del Rosario

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High school senior Nic, seventeen, tries to salvage her tattered reputation by helping her Ivy League-obsessed classmates with college admission essays and finds herself in the process.

 On the Edge of Gone by Corrine Duyvis

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In Amsterdam, the Netherlands, in 2034, a comet is due to hit the Earth within the hour and Denise, who is autistic, must try to find her missing sister and help her neglectful, undependable mother safely aboard a spaceship.

All books mentioned are located in the Teen Scene.

Monday, February 11, 2019


This unusual historical drama from absurdist director Yorgos Lanthimos garnered the most Oscar nominations this year: Best Picture, Best Actress (Olivia Colman), Best Supporting Actress (twice: Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz), Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, Best Editing, and Best Production Design. This awards favorite just might have been yours at the theater, but did it leave you wanting for more? If so, try these movies:

Barry Lyndon: An 18th century Irish man attempts to move up the nobility ladder in this meticulously crafted period piece from director Stanley Kubrick. If you have an eye for historical detail, both Barry Lyndon and The Favourite have plenty of rewards.

The Lobster: Yorgos Lanthimos made his first English-language movie in this 2015 absurdist dystopian comedy, starring Colin Farrell and Rachel Weisz. In the not-too-distant future, single people are forced to find a mate in 45 days or will be turned into an animal of their choosing.

Phantom Thread: A famous dressmaker (played by Daniel Day-Lewis) begins a relationship with a strong-willed woman who inspires his craft. Both Phantom Thread and The Favourite explore complex power structures in odd relationships and pay close attention to period detail and costuming.

Marie Antoinette : A stylish, anachronistic depiction of the life of Marie Antoinette. Much like The Favourite, this is not just another period drama!