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Dear Librarian: Teen books feature death and romance

I’m a teen reader who likes teen and young adult novels, especially ones that feature romance or have won literary awards. I’ve enjoyed books by Jennifer Niven and John Green.

— Carrie

Here are some suggestions for your reading pleasure.

Since you like Green, try Lurlene McDaniel. Most of McDaniel’s books center around teenagers facing fatal illnesses or other life-changing events. They always fall in love at this time.

“The Witch of Blackbird Pond” by Elizabeth George Speare — winner of the John Newbery Medal in 1959 — tells the story of Kit, a girl in Puritan Connecticut.

Having grown up in the Caribbean, Kit does not fit in with her Puritan relatives and befriends the Quaker woman down by Blackbird Pond. Soon both are accused of witchcraft because they aren’t Puritan.

“Thirteen Reasons Why” by Jay Asher tells the story of Clay Jenkins, who receives a box of cassette tapes from Hannah, a girl who recently committed suicide. The tapes give the reasons why Hannah committed suicide. The story alternates between Hannah’s confessions and Clay’s reactions to hearing the information.

Author Rainbow Rowell writes fiction dealing with family relationships, falling in love and finding one’s identity. Some of her books include “Carry On” and “Landline.”

“The Hate U Give” by Angie Thomas — inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement — tells the story of Starr, who is torn between two worlds: the poor black neighborhood where she lives and the whit prep school she attends. When her childhood friend is killed in front of her, she needs to decide on which side she will stand.

“The Sun is Also a Star” by Nicola Yoon is based on the theory that to know something about a person’s history, you need to know everything. The book tells the story of Daniel, the son of Korean shopkeepers, and Natasha, the daughter of illegal Jamaican immigrants, who meet one day and fall in love.

In the free verse book “Perfect” by Ellen Hopkins, four teens face what it means to be perfect to themselves and their families and whether it is worth it to them in the end.

Author Sarah Dessen writes about teenage girls dealing with specific problems such as first love, family issues and failing friendships. Her dialogue is realistic and believable.

Martha Brooks writes coming-of-age novels about first love. Her books include “Two Moons in August” and “Bone Dance.”

Robyn Schneider’s books include “Extraordinary Means,” about teens at a sanatorium for those with tuberculosis, and “The Beginning of Everything,” about a popular student athlete whose life changes after his knee is shattered.

— Amanda Kuhs, Medford library circulation assistant

To get reading advice from a Jackson County Library Services librarian, fill out and submit a book advice form at jcls.libsurveys.com/bookadviceform. You will receive individualized recommendations from a librarian and the advice may be chosen for the Mail Tribune’s monthly Dear Librarian column.

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