unRequired Reading

Our unRequired Reading Blog features the latest picks for teens selected by library staff and volunteers.
Wed, 10/26/2016 - 12:29pm

Louisa May Alcott did not write because she had the need to get the stories out. Louisa May wrote for one reason: she wanted her family to be rich.

Wed, 10/26/2016 - 12:25pm
Cover to Anna Dressed in Blood

It's the time of year when skies turn gray, dead leaves are underfoot, and horror stories feel just right. I've found some corkers for you: things with teeth or bad intentions. There are novels; for those who prefer their horror in small, uh, bites, there are short stories, too. All are written by women. Have fun and pleasant dreams!

Mon, 10/24/2016 - 12:46am
Sweet Whispers, Brother Rush by Virginia Hamilton

Theresa, better known as Tree, is just at the age when guys are starting to notice her. She doesn’t have any time for them, though. She’s got to get home after school. With her mom working and living somewhere else and no dad they can remember, it’s up to Tree to look after her brother Dab. Dab might be older in years than Tree, but he’s younger inside. Always been that way.

No, Tree doesn’t have time for the boys and men who call her name on the street—until she sees the finest looking young man ever. He doesn’t call her name. He doesn’t say anything at all. The truth of the matter is, Brother Rush, for that is his name, is a ghost.

Fri, 10/21/2016 - 10:21am
If you like A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

This readalike is in response to a customer's book-match request. If you would like personalized reading recommendations, fill out the book-match form and a librarian will email suggested titles to you. Available for adults, teens, and kids. You can browse other book matches here.

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from stories, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin, a High Lord of the faeries. As her feelings toward him transform from hostility to a fiery passion, the threats against the faerie lands grow. Feyre must fight to break an ancient curse or she will lose Tamlin forever. (catalog summary)

Read the other book in the Court of Thorns and Roses series:

A Court of Mist and Fury

Though Feyre now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, but as she navigates the feared Night Court's dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. (catalog summary)




If you like Maas' epic, romantic fantasy check out these other titles (adult and teen) as well:

The Accursed
by Joyce Carol Oates 
In 20th century Princeton, New Jersey, a powerful curse, which besets the wealthiest of families, causes the disappearance of a young bride, and when her brother sets out to find her, he crosses paths with the town's most formidable people, including Grover Cleveland and Upton Sinclair. (catalog summary)



by Cat Hellisen
Deep in the forest, in a crumbling ruin of a castle, Sarah begins to untangle the layers of curses affecting her family, until she discovers that the curse has carried over to her, too. The day she falls in love for the first time, Sarah will transform into a beast—unless she can figure out a way to break the curse forever. (catalog summary)




Tue, 10/18/2016 - 11:21am
The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare

Orphaned Kit Tyler had found life with her rich grandfather in Barbados to be wonderful. But her grandfather’s death revealed that their life of tropical splendor was nothing more than an illusion. In debt and desperate, the 17-year-old had very few options.

Running away from an arranged marriage to a much older man, she and her many trunks of expensive clothes board the Dolphin on a voyage to Wethersfield, a Puritan village in Connecticut. She goes to meet her Aunt Rachel, her Uncle Matthew and their daughters—the only relatives she has.

While traveling, she catches the eye of John, a kind, poor student on his way to Wethersfield, and Nat, the captain’s son, who teases Kit about her aristocratic upbringing. She truly enjoys being at sea, but even before she steps foot on the New England shore, she is accused of being a witch by yet another passenger heading to Wethersfield.

Tue, 10/11/2016 - 11:52am
If you like Short Stories (for Teens)

This readalike is in response to a customer's book-match request. If you would like personalized reading recommendations, fill out the book-match form, and a librarian will email suggested titles to you. Available for adults, teens, and kids. You can browse the book matches here.

A few selections on short stories for teens (multiple genres):

The Anatomy of Curiosity
In an unassuming corner of Brooklyn, a young woman learns to be ladylike, to love context, and to speak her mind from a very curious sort of tutor. In a faraway land convulsed by war, a young soldier hears the desert's curious hum as he disarms bombs with the person he doesn't know how to love. In a place so shriveled by drought that any drowning is a curiosity, a young writer tries again and again to tread water beneath the surface of a vast and unusual sea. Three new stories complete with commentary on the creative process from three acclaimed young adult authors working at the height of their powers. (catalog summary)


The Chronicles of Harris Burdick: Fourteen Amazing Authors Tell The Tales
A collection of stories based on illustrations in Chris Van Allsburg's The Mysteries of Harris Burdick. (catalog summary)



The Curiosities: A Collection of Stories

An anthology of darkly paranormal stories, with comments by the authors on their writing process. (catalog summary)