Young Adult Books (2019)

Fish Girl’ by David Weisner & Donna Jo Napoli

‘Fish Girl’ by David Weis­ner & Don­na Jo Napoli

Fish Girl’ is a unique com­ing-of-age tale that begins under­wa­ter. A young mer­maid, called Fish Girl, in a board­walk aquar­i­um has a chance encounter with an ordi­nary girl. Their grow­ing friend­ship inspires Fish Girl’s long­ing for free­dom, inde­pen­dence, and a life beyond the aquar­i­um tank. Sparkling with humour and bril­liant­ly visu­al­ized, Fish Girl’s sto­ry will res­onate with every young per­son fac­ing the chal­lenges and rewards of grow­ing up.







Island’ by Nicky Singer

‘Island’ by Nicky Singer

Cameron trav­els unwill­ing­ly to Her­schel Island in the Arc­tic with his sci­en­tist moth­er. He’s pre­pared for ice and storms and, stripped of his smart tech­nol­o­gy, pos­si­bly bore­dom. But he’s not pre­pared for 24-hour day­light and erupt­ing graves! His expe­ri­ences there lead to him ‘see­ing things in a dif­fer­ent light’ lit­er­al­ly and fig­u­ra­tive­ly. This is due to his friend­ship with a local Inu­vialuit girl who, urged on by her shapeshift­ing grand­moth­er, intro­duces him to the cul­ture of her peo­ple and shows him how the inter­ven­tion of West­ern peo­ple con­tin­ues to destroy their way of life and the envi­ron­ment. The rela­tion­ship between Cameron and his moth­er, who is unable to see Inu­luk, is a focal point in the nov­el, and this per­son­al sto­ry is inter­wo­ven with the strong eco­log­i­cal theme.






One of Us is Lying’ by Karen M. McManus

‘One of Us is Lying’ by Karen M. McManus

One of Us is Lying’ is a sto­ry of what hap­pens when five strangers walk into deten­tion and only four walk out alive. 

Pay close atten­tion and you might solve this.
On Mon­day after­noon, five stu­dents at Bayview High walk into detention.

Bron­wyn, the brain, is Yale-bound and nev­er breaks a rule.

Addy, the beau­ty, is the pic­ture-per­fect home­com­ing princess.

Nate, the crim­i­nal, is already on pro­ba­tion for dealing.

Coop­er, the ath­lete, is the all-star base­ball pitcher.

And Simon, the out­cast, is the cre­ator of Bayview High’s noto­ri­ous gos­sip app.

Only, Simon nev­er makes it out of that class­room. Before the end of deten­tion Simon’s dead. And accord­ing to inves­ti­ga­tors, his death wasn’t an acci­dent. On Mon­day, he died. But on Tues­day, he’d planned to post juicy reveals about all four of his high-pro­file class­mates, which makes all four of them sus­pects in his mur­der. Or are they the per­fect pat­sies for a killer who’s still on the loose?

Every­one has secrets, right? What real­ly mat­ters is how far you would go to pro­tect them.


This book con­tains mature con­tent as well as explor­ing sen­si­tive issues per­tain­ing to health, well-being and sui­cide. We high­ly rec­om­mend that it is read in the con­text of a sup­port­ive fam­i­ly or school frame­work, enabling the sen­si­tive dis­cus­sion of these topics.


Rail Head’ by Philip Reeve

‘Rail Head’ by Philip Reeve

Come with me, Zen Star­ling, she had said. The girl in the red coat. But how did she know his name?
The Great Net­work is a place of drones and androids, main­te­nance spi­ders and Sta­tion Angels. The place of the thou­sand gates, where sen­tient trains can take you any­where in the galaxy in the blink of an eye. Zen Star­ling is a nobody. A pet­ty thief from the filthy streets of Thun­der City who aim­less­ly rides the rails of the Net­work. So when the mys­te­ri­ous stranger Raven offers Zen a chance to escape the squalor of the city and live the rest of his days in lux­u­ry, Zen can’t believe his luck. All he has to do is steal one small box from the Emperor’s train with the help of Nova, an android girl. But the Great Net­work is a haz­ardous mess of twists and turns, and that lit­tle box just might bring every­thing in this galaxy – and the next – to the end of the line. The high­ly antic­i­pat­ed nov­el from Carnegie-medal-win­ning author Philip Reeve, Rail­head is a fast, immer­sive, and heart-pound­ing ride per­fect for any sci-fi fan. Step aboard – the uni­verse is waiting.



The Girl from Aleppo: Nujeen’s Escape From War to Freedom’ by Nujeen Mustafa with Christina Lamb

Nujeen Mustafa has cere­bral pal­sy and can­not walk. This did not stop her brav­ing incon­ceiv­able odds to trav­el in her wheel­chair from Syr­ia in search of a new life. Shar­ing her full sto­ry for the first time, Nujeen recounts the details of her child­hood and dis­abil­i­ty, as well as the specifics of her har­row­ing jour­ney across the Mediter­ranean to Greece and final­ly to Ger­many to seek an edu­ca­tion and the med­ical treat­ment she needs.

Nujeen’s sto­ry has already touched mil­lions and in this book writ­ten with Christi­na Lamb, best­selling co-author of ‘I Am Malala’, she helps to put a human face on a glob­al emer­gency. Trapped in a fifth floor apart­ment in Alep­po and unable to go to school, she taught her­self to speak Eng­lish by watch­ing US tele­vi­sion. As civ­il war between Assad’s forces and ISIS mil­i­tants broke out around them, Nujeen and her fam­i­ly fled first to her native Kobane, then Turkey before they joined thou­sands of dis­placed per­sons in a jour­ney to Europe and asy­lum. She want­ed to come to Europe, she said, to become an astro­naut, to meet the Queen and to learn how to walk.

In her strong, pos­i­tive voice, Nujeen tells the sto­ry of what it is real­ly like to be a refugee, to have grown up in a dic­ta­tor­ship only for your life to be blight­ed by war; to have left a beloved home­land to become depen­dent on oth­ers. It is the sto­ry of our times told through the incred­i­ble brav­ery of one remark­able girl deter­mined to keep smiling.


The River and the Book’ by Alison Croggon

‘The Riv­er and the Book’ by Ali­son Croggon

Com­bin­ing mag­i­cal real­ism and fable, this lyri­cal tale is the sto­ry of a land­scape and com­mu­ni­ty destroyed by West­ern greed. From the inter­na­tion­al­ly best­selling author of the high fan­ta­sy series The Books of Pelli­nor comes a pow­er­ful sto­ry about the exploita­tion of indige­nous peo­ple by the First World. Endorsed by Amnesty Inter­na­tion­al as con­tribut­ing to a bet­ter under­stand­ing of human rights, this poet­ic com­ing-of-age sto­ry com­bines mag­i­cal real­ism and fable, and fea­tures beau­ti­ful black-and-white chap­ter illus­tra­tions. Sim­bal­a’s vil­lage has two trea­sures: the Riv­er, their road and their god; and the Book, their his­to­ry, their ora­cle and their soul. Sim­bala is a Keep­er of the Book, the lat­est in a long line of women who can use it to find answers to the vil­lagers’ ques­tions. As devel­op­ers begin to poi­son the Riv­er on which the vil­lagers rely, the Book pre­dicts change. But this does not come in the form that they expect; it is the sym­pa­thet­ic for­eign­er who comes to the vil­lage who inflicts the great­est dam­age of all.