"Because the day, it was school. It was the bells too loud or rattly in broken speakers that would never get fixed. It was the bad floors squeaky and footprinted, and the bang of lockers. It was writing my name in the upper-right-hand corner of the paper or Mr. Nelson would automatically deduct five points, and in the upper left-hand-corner of the paper or Mr. Peter would deduct three. "—Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler
High school is a strange existence. It is a minefield of cliques, relationships, and hopefully schoolwork. There are several authors who have found a sharply accurate voice when writing as teens, John Green being the most successful.
When it does ring true, scenes and exchanges strike with the power to take us back to our most vibrant adolescent memories. These are the books that hold this ability for me. They are great high school narratives dealing with isolation, cliques, peer-pressure, and simply trying to survive.
Boy + Bot are two very different friends who share the same love of discovery. Boy encounters the robot in the woods while collecting pinecones and asks to play. "Affirmative!" the robot answers.
"In the Jingle Jangle Jungle on a cold and rainy day, four little friends found a perfect place to play."
A zebra, a lion, a moose, and a sheep find shelter in a cave, but maybe they should have first asked The Very Cranky Bear. He chases the quartet out into the storm with a "ROAR!"
When the Bunny family finds an abandoned wolf pup on their doorstep, they raise it as their own. Only big sister Dot is skeptical of little Wolfie the Bunny.
When the vaudevillians came to summer in Bluffton, they brought with them an elephant, a zebra, and a young actor named Buster Keaton. Henry Harrison is a regular kid from the nearby town. Upon meeting the showbiz folks, Henry is entranced by their world of gags and tricks.
I'm a Shark is a hilarious book about fear by madcap master Bob Shea. We meet an awesome shark who declares himself unafraid of anything. Shots, scary movies, and dinosaurs are nothing to this undersea predator. That's when a tiny crab and fish happen to mention spiders.
"Creepy spider! Yuck! Is it on me? EWWW! EWWW! EWWW!"
"By now I think you know what happened to your sandwich. But you may not know how it happened. So let me tell you."
The Bear Ate Your Sandwich follows one curious creature's romp through the big city, which he interprets as the strangest and most surprising forest he has ever been in.
Dancing Feet is a colorful guessing game for little ones. Each page spread alternates between questions and answers of which animal might be moving and grooving on the next page.
Julia is new in town, courtesy of her giant tortoise-house. She likes the neighborhood perfectly fine but thinks it is a tad quiet. To make things more interesting, she hangs a sign outside her door reading "Julia's House for Lost Creatures."
Soon, all sorts of magical beings appear on her doorstep looking for shelter. It starts with a patchwork cat, then a bridgeless troll follows. Once word spreads about the house, gnomes, dragons and mermaids start lining up outside. Before Julia even knows it, her humble abode has been overrun with a bunch of fairytale freeloaders. What is a harried hostess to do?
Once Upon an Alphabet is as ambitious as picture books come. Author and illustrator Oliver Jeffers presents 26 short tales, each based on a different letter of the alphabet. An astronaut who is afraid of heights, a daredevil girl who laughs in the face of death, and a lightning-struck lumberjack are just a few of characters we meet.