The members of our Teen Advisory Group have spent many hours reading, watching, and reviewing so that they can recommend the best of the best to you. Here are some of their favorite things they enjoyed in 2012…
Rosalie is a fan of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin.
Mara's best friends are dead and she is alive. She moves to another school and she thinks she can't fall in love, but she's wrong. Noah knows a lot about her, and it seems like he already knows her before they even met. This is a story about a girl who is trying to get her life back together, or trying to live as everything falls apart. This is a cute story that has romance and adventure, but it also has a bit of horror.
Caitlin likes And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie.
This book is about a group of people who are invited to an isolated island by the same person for different reasons. Then one by one, they all start disappearing. This is a classic suspense novel, and even though some teens might not be able to relate to it, it's a thrilling story that will surely keep readers turning the pages.
Genevieve enjoys the DMC (Detroit Metal City) series by Kiminori Wakasugi.
This series is about a death metal band that has a great following in the indie scene. The protagonist is a pushover who struggles with trying to make a living in the music world. Through a series of accidental occurrences, the band rises in the dangerous world of death metal. This series is very entertaining, however it is rated "M" for mature themes. The change in the protagonist from a pushover to the frontman of DMC is extremely enjoyable.
Jose suggests First Comes Love by Katie Kacvinsky.
The story describes the relationship between two people who are opposite from each other. They both learn that when two different lives meet, something good can come out of it. What makes this book great is that it teaches teens that not being perfect can help form a relationship with someone else who also isn't perfect, and that people can try to learn from their own unique characteristics.
Genevieve recommends To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.
This book is a true look at society's opinion on racism, the power it holds over other people, and how it goes too far. This would be a good read for youth who don't quite understand segregation and racism, and it would be good to start an open dialogue.
Shania is a fan of Cat's Cradle by Jo Rioux.
Cat's Cradle is a graphic novel about a girl who wants to be a monster hunter. She finds a creature that can almost transform into a human — everything but its tail! While the boy is running, he drops some golden twine and the girl picks it up. Then the family kidnaps the girl to get the golden twine back. I'm recommending this book because people who like graphic novels or books about magical powers will enjoy it.
Caitlin recommends Soul Eater Vol 1 by Atsushi Ohkubo.
This is the first book in a manga series about a girl and her friends who attend Death Weapon Meister Academy. If you attend this school, you get partnered up with someone else who is either the person transforming into a weapon or the meister, the one who controls or wields the weapon. Each pair must collect a total of 99 demon-kishin souls and one witch soul in order for the weapon to become a weapon for Lord Death. The main character is Maka, who is the meister, while her partner is Soul "eater" Evans, her demon-scythe partner and friend. Together they go on life-threatening, emotionally exhausting, and trust-testing missions in order to transform Soul into a weapon that Lord Death would use. This manga does not follow the traditional boy-lead as most shonen manga do. Instead of focusing on a love triangle or general romance as a subplot, Ohkubo puts attention on the bond between the partners; he develops them into soul mates which doesn't have to be a "lovey dovey" type of situation. Also, the series has a lot of action and serious but funny moments which are a perfect mix for any gender.
Stephanie suggests The Light in the Forest by Conrad Richter.
This book is about a white boy who was kidnapped by Lenape Indians at a young age and renamed True Son. True Son was raised by his tribe, but then one day he is rescued and returned to his white family. Does True Son stay or go? Where does he belong?
Genevieve likes the Hell Girl: Three Vessels anime.
The hands of time are still progressing as the third collection of Hell Girl is introduced. Everything comes full circle and Ai continues to help people looking for vengeance. It's an interesting story to watch as it explores the complex nature of human beings. Nothing is certain, even the people who are sent to hell.
Caitlin enjoys the movie Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2.
It's the final part of the final movie, and things are really starting to heat up as the trio go looking for horcurxes so they can finally kill Voldemort. Throughout the movie relationships are created, lives are ended, and armies are truly put to the test — Team Voldemort vs. Team Harry. This is the final movie in the whole series, so it's best to complete it. Plus, you get to see Daniel Radcliffe in a bra :)