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If This Is Home

by Kristine Scarrow
edition: Paperback
  • age: 12 to 15
  • Grade: 7 to 10
tagged: parents, homelessness & poverty, death & dying

When her mom is diagnosed with terminal cancer, Jayce searches for her estranged father, hoping he can fix everything.

Jayce Loewen has had to take on a lot of responsibility over the years. Her single mom works two jobs and long hours, leaving Jayce in charge of her four-year-old sister most of the time. When her mom is diagnosed with cancer, Jayce …

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Dark Side

by John Choi
edition: Paperback
also available: eBook
  • age: 13 to 18
  • Grade: 9 to 12
tagged: depression, sexual abuse), diversity & multicultural

Emerson Yeung seems to have every reason to be happy-- he gets good marks, has some friends, and has a part time job at his parents' dry cleaning business. But Emerson has been hiding something. The pressure to be the perfect son put on him by his parents that sometimes escalates into abuse from his father. This has led to a depression that leaves …

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Dead to Me

by Cristy Watson
edition: Paperback
also available: eBook
  • age: 14 to 18
  • Grade: 9 to 12
tagged: death & dying, general (see also headings under social themes)

Ever since Logan found out that his uncle was involved in the accident that killed Logan's dad, he's been full of resentment. He cuts his uncle out of his life and finds that being reckless is the only way to feel anything. Looking for a place to drink, underaged and undisturbed, Logan and his friends break into a house they think is abandoned. Wha …

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Cutter Boy

by Cristy Watson
edition: eBook
  • age: 14 to 18
  • Grade: 9 to 12
tagged: bullying, parents

Bullied at school and ignored at home, Travis has a secret: cutting himself with a razor blade is the only thing that lets him control the pain in his life and find some peace. When he becomes friends with Chyvonne, a new girl at school, he doesn't know how to get close to her without revealing his secret and making himself even more vulnerable. Sp …

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Jockey Girl

by Shelley Peterson
edition: Paperback
  • age: 12 to 15
  • Grade: 7 to 10
tagged: horses, parents, drugs, alcohol, substance abuse

CCBC’s Best Books for Kids & Teens (Fall 2016) — Commended
2016 VOYA Top Shelf Fiction Selection

A teen girl’s quest to find her mother leads her to the big city, and gives her the courage to fulfill her dream of becoming a jockey.

Evangeline “Evie” Gibb lives a seemingly charmed life on a thoroughbred racehorse farm. But in reality, Evie f …

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Under the Dusty Moon

by Suzanne Sutherland
edition: eBook
  • age: 12 to 15
  • Grade: 7 to 10
tagged: parents, music, dating & sex

2016 Junior Library Guild Selection
2016 VOYA Top Shelf Fiction Selection
CCBC’s Best Books for Kids & Teens (Fall 2016) — Commended

She’s with the band, whether she likes it or not.

Victoria Mahler is the sixteen-year-old only daughter of rocker Micky Wayne, whose band, Dusty Moon, took the world by storm when Micky was just a teenager. The ba …

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