New Books for Girls

Don't Turn Around by Michelle Gagnon

  Reading Level:  Grades 8 and up

This tense well crafted thriller opens with 16-year-old Noa waking up on a metal table in a warehouse with an incision in her chest.   Much like a young Dragon Tattoo's Lisbeth Salander Noa  is a tough, smart orphan who has been mistreated by the system and was able to use her considerable computer skills to establish a life on the border of society.  After her escape, she meets up with wealthy, privileged Peter who has hacked his way into some files in his father's office.  Both teens  find themselves on the run.   Will they elude capture long enough to get some answers? Who are these men who are chasing them and why are they after Noa and Peter?  What has done to Noa?  What is the connection to Peter's family?

WARNING:  This is the first book in a trilogy.  Book one leaves you hanging. You'll want to keep reading, but you can't.

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The Dogs of Winter by Bobbie Pyron

Reading Level: Grades 5 - 8

Truth can be much stranger than fiction and fiction based on truth can make a great story.  Inspired by the life of Ivan Mishukov, Ivan Andreovich is a five-year-old boy who was orphaned in post-Soviet Russia, left on the streets to fend for himself, and adopted by a pack of wild dogs.

Life for street children is a battle to survive.  Hunger, cold, roving gangs of both adults and older children make survival tenuous.  Ivan finds his place with a family of dogs.  Ivan and the dogs share what food they have and provide warmth and protection for each other.  But more than that, the dogs love Ivan as he loves them.   Ivan becomes more and more like his dog family.  While humans can be uncaring or cruel, it is the dogs who show the most "humanity."

Ultimately, Ivan Andreovich , like the real Ivan, is rescued.

 

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Other books by Bobbie Pyron

Bomb: The Race to Build-and Steal-the World's Most Dangerous Weapon by Steve Sheinkin

Reading Level: Grades 5 and up

Bomb  reads like an edge-of -your- seat spy novel, but it's all true.  It tells of  the Herculean effort behind building the bomb, the desperate arms race with Germany that will decide WWII,  the heroic efforts of Norwegein resistance fighters, and  the spies determined to steal the plans for the Soviet Union.  The story of the scientific genius behind the bomb,  the politics, the military heroics, and the espionage make this a thrilling read where truth is far more exciting than fiction.

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Other books by Steve Sheinkin

A World Away by Nancy Grossman

Reading Level:  Ages 12 and up

Sixteen-year-old Eliza Miller has reached the age for Amish teenagers to experience "rumspringa", their wild time, when they must decide whether or not to committ to the Amish way of life.  Eliza yearns to spend the summer with  the "English" and learn about the modern world.  When she is offered the opportunity to be a nanny in the Chicago area it's everything she could wish for, including a romance with a Yankee boy.  This is a wonderful look at a unique culture, and yet in many ways, Eliza is just like anyone else trying to find their path in life.

Nancy Grossman is a Highland Park author. 

 

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