Self Image

Jefferson's Sons

Author: 
Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

Grades 5-9
Third U.S. President Thomas Jefferson lived at the plantation Monticello and kept slaves to work in his fields, farm and home. One of his slaves was a woman named Sally Hemings, mother to four of Jefferson's children - Beverly, Harriet, Maddy, and Eston.  Though slaves, the children and their mother were given special treatment by Jefferson because of his discreet relationship to them - but nevertheless, slaves they remained. 

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Okay For Now

Author: 
Gary D. Schmidt

Reading Level: Grades 6+

Doug Swieteck and his lousy older brother just moved to a brand-new town that will be probably just as lousy as the old one - and with less baseball. And, just like in his old town, everyone who's anyone (teachers, the police, his dad, Lil Spicer down the street) thinks that Doug's just a skinny good-for-nothing kid who won't ever amount to anything except for trouble.

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Akata Witch

Author: 
Nnedi Okorafor-Mbachu

Reading Level: Grade 6-8

Sunny felt out of place when she and her family lived in the United States, she stands out even more in Nigeria. It isn't fair. She's 100% Igbo just like her parents and brothers, but Sunny is an albino so instead of having beautiful dark skin, hair and eyes, Sunny is so light her skin and hair look yellow.

When Sunny sees a strange vision in a candle's flame, she doesn't tell anyone. She's strange enough as it is. When Sunny is befriended by a classmate, she finds herself drawn into the very strangeness she is trying to avoid.

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Notes from a Totally Lame Vampire: Because the Undead Have Feelings Too!

Author: 
Tim Collins
Illustrator: 
Andrew Pinder

Reading Level: Grades 6 - 8

Nigel is about to turn 100 and he has yet to have a girlfriend. His problem is that, although he is a vampire, he does not have super strength, preternatural speed, or hypnotizing beauty. In fact he is weaker and slower than most of his classmates, and sunlight gives him a bad case of acne. In short, he is forever trapped in the body of a geeky 15 year old boy. How will he ever be able to impress the beautiful new girl and maybe, someday, get to bite someone?

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Pink

Author: 
Lili Wilkinson

Reading Level: Grades 7+

What does pink mean to you? Does it mean a little girl’s bedroom, wallpapered with ponies, princesses, ballerinas and unicorns? A color occasionally featured in your wardrobe? A bonafide, lip-glossed, perfect 'Plastic' a la Mean Girls? Or is pink a color you hate with every dark black fiber of your being?

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Hothouse

Author: 
Chris Lynch

Reading Level: Grade 8+

Russell was named for DJ's father. DJ was named for Russell's. Their dads were neighbors, best friends and coworkers. Both were firemen. They did everything together...including dying in the same fire.

When their small town hails both men as heroes, both their sons and widows are expected to attend function after function honoring the men. Although Russell is intensely proud of his father, he and DJ both wish the attention would end.

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Tutored

Author: 
Whittenberg, Allison

Reading Level: Grades 8+

"Are you a minority?  Unemployed, underemployed, or economically disadvantaged?  We serve the entire West Side, and we have services that can assist you to a new FUTURE!  Stop by today."

Hakiam didn't believe the lame sign. He just stopped by to get extra credit for his GED class. He went back the second time because of the girl behind the desk. Even with her rich girl clothes and fancy way of talking...there was something about her.

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Girl Overboard

Author: 
Justina Chen Headley

Reading Level: Grades 8+

To the outside observer, Syrah Cheng, daughter of billionaire Ethan Cheng, lives a charmed life. If only it were so. Between her critical, distant parents, her hateful adult half brother and sister and her sycophantic classmates, Syrah feels besieged and alone. Life has been even worse since the snowboarding accident that almost took her life and brought her under the unfavorable scrutiny of the press.

When her life long friend Age turns his back on her, Syrah realizes that her happiness lies within herself.

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