Friday, May 28, 2010

Faces on covers

It's funny how a randomly picked pile of books sometimes has similarities!

Springer, Nancy. Possessing Jessie.
Finally, a book of interest to older middle school school students that is not 300+ pages long. Like this author's Somebody, this is a brief (88 pages) but well-done book that will appeal to the more reluctant reader. Jessie is devastated by the death of her brother Jason, even though he was quite nasty and caused his own demise. She starts to dress and act like her brother in order to make her mother feel better, and starts to take on more and more of his characteristics. Creepy and atmospheric, this is more along the lines of a ghost story, but could be used for a mystery unit as well. Blood Trail is another intriguing one by this author, and her Enola Holmes mysteries are always good.

Stratton, Alan. Borderline.
Sami struggles with his identity as a Muslim, and even though he has two good friends who are not Muslim, he never feels that he fits in anywhere. His father, a highly respected scientist, is very controlling and exacting. When the father cancels a trip to Canada which he had promised Sami, Sami investigates and thinks that his father is having an affair. Something suspicious is going on, and when the FBI arrests his father on charges of terrorism, Sami has to investigate and try to determine what is really going on in order to clear his family's name. This is an excellent depiction of racial profiling and racial bullying, but am I the only one who thinks that the cover doesn't accurately depict Sami? His family is Iranian. This did have some mature language, so I'm still debating it for the middle school, but it is something that is perfect for high school collections.

Taylor, Lani. Lips Touch Three Times.
I've read so much about this that I had to pick it up, even though it is clearly grades 9 and up. My 16-year-old daughter had read it and liked it; it's heavy-duty paranormal romance. We have werewolves and vampire romances galore, but not much with goblins. I didn't read the whole thing, but had to mention the book because the cover really, really creeped me out. There are some covers that are kind of bland, but considering that the interior illustrations (by the same illustrator) are really quite nice, I was even more disturbed by the bad 80s quality of the cover. High school libraries will want to buy this, but I'll pass.

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