Author: Ally Condie
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander's face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her ideal mate . . . until she sees Ky Markham's face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black.
The Society tells her it's a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she's destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can't stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society's infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she's known and a path that no one else has dared to follow.
Book: I Am Nuchu
Author: Brenda Stanley
Publisher: Westside Books
At age 17, Cal Burton, half Ute Indian, never gave much thought to his heritage. But when his parents suddenly divorce, Cal's mother uproots him and his siblings from Spokane, WA, to live with her on the Utah reservation where she grew up. Angry and resentful, Cal is at first put off by the poor standard of living on the reservation. Things only get worse and he's shocked when confronted with blatant racism in town. And here, people seem to recoil when he mentions his name. On top of it all, the bigoted local sheriff seems to have it in for him. When Cal's world is suddenly rocked by a terrible tragedy and he unearths several shocking facts surrounding his aunt's death at a nearby lake twenty years before, he vows to let nothing stop him from getting at the truth. Suspenseful and richly layered, I Am Nuchu is a coming-of-age story about a teen wrestling with his identity as he finds himself caught between two drastically different worlds.
Book: The Princess of Las Pulgas
Author: C. Lee McKenzie
Publisher: Westside Books
After her father's slow death from cancer, Carlie thought things couldn't get worse. But now, she is forced to confront the fact that her family in dire financial straits. To stay afloat, her mom has had to sell their cherished oceanfront home and move Carlie and her younger brother Keith to the other side of the tracks to dreaded Las Pulgas, or "the fleas" in Spanish. They must now attend a tough urban high school instead of their former elite school, and on Carlie's first day of school, she runs afoul of edgy K.T., the Latina tattoo girl who's always ready for a fight, even on crutches. Carlie fends off the attention of Latino and African American teen boys, and one, a handsome seventeen-year-old named Juan, nicknames her Princess when he detects her aloof attitude towards her new classmates. What they don't know is that Carlie isn't really aloof; she's just in mourning for her father and almost everything else that mattered to her. Mr. Smith, the revered English teacher who engages all his students, suggests she'll like her new classmates if she just gives them a chance; he cajoles her into taking over the role of Desdemona in the junior class production of Othello, opposite Juan, after K.T. gets sidelined. Keith, who becomes angrier and more sullen by the day, spray paints insults all over the gym as he acts out his anger over the family's situation and reduced circumstances. Even their cat Quicken goes missing, sending Carlie and Keith on a search into the orchard next to their seedy garden apartment complex. They're met by a cowboy toting a rifle who ejects them at gunpoint from his property. But when Carlie finds him amiably having coffee with their mom the next day -- when he's returned her cat -- she begins to realize that nothing is what it seems in Las Pulgas.
Book: At the Crossroads
Author: Travis Hunter
The future he was meant for is just within his reach. . .
Franklyn "Franky" Bourgeois is fifteen, and he's already done more living than most. First he was blasted out of a normal childhood in New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina hit. Determined to survive, he left town with two older cousins. They were nothing short of thugs, but they were all he had. And hard as he tried, even for a good kid like Franky, their influence was hard to resist. . .
Now Franky's just a heartbeat away from a life of crime--until he gets an unexpected chance to turn things around. Getting back on track is easier said than done, especially when a group of prep school fools set out to keep Franky on the streets. But Franky's always been a survivor. He'll just have to prove it one more time...