Get your library card handy and reserve your place in line for these new August releases! If you place a hold now, they can be in your hands before they even hit the shelf.
Please note: all summaries are taken from the Boston Public Library catalog unless otherwise noted. They may have been edited for length and clarity.
The Beauty of Darkness by Mary Pearson
Summary: Princess Lia and her love, Rafe, have escaped Venda and the path before them is winding and dangerous.
Why We’re Excited: The final book in the Remnant Chronicles (previous installments: The Kiss of Deception and The Heart of Betrayal) is finally here, and it looks pretty epic. The Heart of Betrayal ended on a cliffhanger, but resolution awaits: of not only a trilogy’s worth of intrigue, but also the love triangle between Princess Lia, the prince she left at the altar, and the assassin sent to kill her. Fans of Sarah J. Maas, Marie Rutkoski, and Rosamund Hodge (and of course Pearson’s earlier Jenna Fox Chronicles) should check the series out!
All We Have Left by Wendy Mills
Summary: In interweaving stories of sixteen-year-olds, modern-day Jesse tries to cope with the ramifications of her brother’s death on 9/11, while in 2001, Alia, a Muslim, gets trapped in one of the Twin Towers and meets a boy who changes everything for her as flames rage around them.
Why We’re Excited: It feels very weird to say we’re “excited” about a book about 9/11, but given the current political climate and the horrifying levels of Islamophobia that have prevailed since the fall of the Twin Towers, it seems like this will be an important read for many. Presumably because this year marks the 15th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, several similarly-themed books for teens or middle grade readers are being published around the same time — Nine, Ten by Nora Raleigh Baskin, Somewhere Among by Annie Donwerth-Chikamatsu, Towers Falling by Jewell Parker Rhodes and The Memory of Things by Gae Polisner — but this is the only one I’ve seen that’s both aimed at teen readers and centers around the impact of 9/11 on Muslims. For a less fraught depiction of contemporary Muslim life, try Does My Head Look Big in This?, She Wore Red Trainers, and of course the inimitable Ms. Marvel.
Last Descendants by Matthew J. Kirby
Summary: Nothing in Owen’s life has been right since his father died in prison, accused of a crime Owen is certain he didn’t commit. Monroe, the IT guy at school, might finally bring Owen the means to clear his father’s name by letting him use an Animus — a device that lets users explore genetic memories buried within their own DNA. During a simulation, Owen uncovers the existence of a powerful relic long considered a legend — the Trident of Eden. Now two secret organizations will stop at nothing to take possession of this artifact — the Brotherhood of Assassins and the Templar Order. It becomes clear the only way to save himself is to find the Trident first. Under the guidance of Monroe, Owen and a group of other teenagers go into a memory they all share within their DNA: the 1863 Draft Riots in New York City. Owen and his companions will find themselves tested on the violent streets of New York, and their experiences in the past will have far-reaching consequences in the present. (summary via the publisher’s website)
Why We’re Excited: In case you’ve been living under a rock for the past ten years, Assassin’s Creed is a hugely popular video game which follows a secret society of Assassins throughout various time periods as they pursue their eternal struggle against rival group the Knights Templar. Lots of cool history and neat graphics to go with your adventures! (I’m not a gamer, but I have watched my brother play a lot of Assassin’s Creed in my time.) The franchise has put out graphic novels and adult novelizations, but this is their first tie-in aimed specifically at young adults, and I’m particularly interested to see how it (no pun intended) plays out, especially with the movie coming out soon as well.
Possession by M. Verano
Summary: All her life, Laetitia Jones has only wanted to be a star. It’s more than an ambition—somewhere deep inside, she knows that she was born for greatness. But her path to stardom now seems to be halted by a mysterious, undiagnosed illness that’s taken over her body. Doctors don’t have a clue and most days, she’s stuck at home documenting her strange symptoms—symptoms that start with fevers and chills, but soon escalate to bizarre bodily reactions. Laetitia’s only escape from her illness is following the news—and the race riots that are moving closer and closer to her neighborhood. But when horrific visions begin to invade her mind, even the media can’t distract her and she begins to wonder—is her illness something biological…or is it something more? Are the voices she hears and the notes she finds in her own handwriting signs of insanity…or signs of something much more sinister and demonic? Or, perhaps, signs of something benevolent…something holy even. Laetitia has always known she’d be famous…she just didn’t know it would happen this way. (summary via the publisher’s website)
Why We’re Excited: THAT COVER. Whoever designed it deserves a raise. What a gorgeous, creepy visual for a horror novel! It’s also a nice change to see a horror novel about someone other than yet another white girl in a dilapidated mansion. The “found text” conceit (the book is supposedly an edited compilation of the protagonist’s blog entries and other primary source documents, a la The Blair Witch Project) sounds pretty interesting, too.
Georgia Peaches & Other Forbidden Fruit by Jaye Robin Brown
Summary: Joanna Gordon has been out and proud for years, but when her popular radio evangelist father remarries and decides to move all three of them from Atlanta to the more conservative Rome, Georgia, he asks Jo to do the impossible: to lie low for the rest of her senior year. And Jo reluctantly agrees. Although it is (mostly) much easier for Jo to fit in as a straight girl, things get complicated when she meets Mary Carlson, the oh-so-tempting sister of her new friend at school. But Jo couldn’t possibly think of breaking her promise to her dad. Even if she’s starting to fall for the girl. Even if there’s a chance Mary Carlson might be interested in her, too. Right? (summary via the publisher’s website)
Why We’re Excited: This sounds like a cuter version of The Miseducation of Cameron Post crossed with Openly Straight only with a happy ending, and I’ve got my fingers crossed that it’ll actually turn out that way, since Cameron Post and Rafe Goldberg ripped my heart out and stomped all over it. (Spoiler alert: those books are not romances, no matter what the back copy seems like it’s implying. Grr.) Join me in the land of hopeful expectation!
Did I get you interested in reading one of these books? Just click the title of the one you want and the link will take you to the relevant page in the catalog. From there you can click the green “Place a Hold” button and you’re all set! (Unfortunately, due to a hiccup in our current acquisitions schedule, not all of these books are available for holds yet, but you can still call your local library and ask them to place a hold for you as soon as the book comes in.)
Need a library card? Wondering how long you can borrow a book? Borrowing and Circulation information can be found here.
*”On the Radar” features book previews by Veronica, the Teen Librarian at the Dudley Branch, on the last Tuesday or Friday of every month.