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Teen Recommendation: The Sweet Revenge of Celia Door

Celia Door enters high school with giant boots, dark eyeliner, and a thirst for revenge against Sandy Firestone, the girl who did something unspeakable to Celia last year. With only poetry for solace she attempts to deal with her classmate's cruelty, the loss of her only friend, and her parents' separation. But then Celia meets Drake, the cool new kid from New York City who entrusts her with his deepest secret and seeks her help. But when Celia's quest for justice threatens her relationship with Drake she's forced to decide which is sweeter: revenge or friendship.

Dystopia for Teens: Flawed

Celestine is a model daughter, well-liked by classmates and teachers and dating a charming boy. Celestine encounters a situation where she makes an instinctive decision and breaks a rule. She could be facing life-changing repercussions like imprisonment and branding. She could be found flawed.

Parent Recommendation: What's In There?

Gus and Nellie have some exciting news: there’s going to be a baby in their family! Join them through the seasons as they watch their mother’s pregnancy with fascination and curiosity while awaiting the birth of their new baby sibling. Combining accessible, humorous, and accurate illustrations, conversations between the two siblings, and factual text this book helps children understand the way a growing baby develops and is born. 

Battle Ready: Memoir of a SEAL Warrior Medic

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Mark L. Donald joined the U S Marines straight out of high school as a way to escape his abusive father and avoid trouble with neighborhood gangs.  Given the work ethic installed by his mother and an innate competitive sense, he quickly earned a position on a Reconnaissance Team, the equivalent of a Navy Seal or Army Green Beret.  During the extensive training required for this team, he observed the Navy Hospital Corpsmen HM1 at work, and realized that this was what he was truly meant to do.  The story of his transition to a Navy HM1, during the Persian Gulf and Afghanistan War makes for a gripping read.  This book gives a great inside look at life on the battlefield and the devotion required of a true soldier.

Secret History of Wonder Woman

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Jill Lepore writes a story rich in historical detection about the most popular female superhero of all time while revealing a fascinating family story and history of twentieth-century feminism.

Wonder Woman was created in 1941 by William Moulton Marston.  Marston's life was greatly influenced by early suffragists, starting with Emmeline Pankhurst, and including Olive Byrne and Margaret Sanger.  Marston and Byrne wrote a regular column for “Family Circle “celebrating conventional family life, even as they themselves pursued lives of extraordinary nonconformity.  Marston’s other claim to fame —-he invented the lie detector test.

  

Out of the Silent Planet

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Dr. Ransom is a professor on a solitary walking tour of the English countryside, searching for a place to lay his head for the night. Instead, he finds himself drugged, forced onto a space ship and thrust into a cosmic journey with eternal implications.

Ransom’s two captors, each with his own malicious motives, transport him to the planet Malacandra, planning to offer him as a human sacrifice to the planet’s ruler. However, as Ransom escapes and begins to explore Malacandra on his own, he discovers that its creatures are not quite what he or the other humans had imagined. In fact, this world’s beings and their story might illuminate the story of the universe, as well as the dangers facing Ransom’s home planet, earth.

This book is excellent in its own right, and is just the first in C.S. Lewis’ Space trilogy.  If you love to read about other fictional worlds or that we are part of a much bigger story, this book might just be the summer read you’ve been looking for. 

Queen of the Night, by Alexander Chee

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In this sprawling novel, set during France’s Second Empire, an American orphan transforms herself from circus performer to courtesan to opera sensation. Along the way, Alexander Chee’s lush prose transports the reader into the midst of Napoleon III’s court, revealing the hard work—and heartbreak—behind the opulence. Readers with an interest in French history or opera will delight in Chee’s thoroughly-researched characters and settings, and in cameos by real historical figures such as George Sand and Cora Pearl. Those with a taste for intrigue will devour the twists and turns of the plot as princes, empresses, courtesans, and musicians scheme for power, love, and revenge.

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