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My Body in Pieces

by Marie-Noëlle Hébert, translated by Shelley Tanaka
edition: eBook
also available: Hardcover
  • age: 14 to 18
  • Grade: 9 to 12
tagged: eating disorders & body image, women, depression & mental illness, social topics, self-esteem & self-reliance

A deeply emotional graphic memoir of a young woman’s struggles with self-esteem and body image issues.

All Marie-Noëlle wants is to be thin and beautiful. She wishes that her thighs were slimmer, that her stomach lay flatter. Maybe then her parents wouldn’t make fun of her eating habits at family dinners, the girls at school wouldn’t call her …

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What's in it for Me?

by LS Stone
edition: Paperback
  • age: 10 to 14
  • Grade: 5 to 9
tagged: elephants, non-classifiable

What's in it for Me? - Summer is only a month away, but things aren't going according to plan for fifteen-year-old Nick Bannerman. Nick dreams of making it big in music, and summer means scoring a deal for his band, mega parties, surfing in Tofino--and not much else. His best friend, Trevor, wants him to spend the summer with him in Africa building …

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Body Image

Deal with it because all bodies are great bodies

by Tierra Hohn, illustrated by Marne Grahlman
edition: Hardcover
  • age: 9 to 14
  • Grade: 4 to 9
tagged: social topics, emotions & feelings, self-esteem & self-reliance, bullying

Too fat, too thin. Muffin top, flat bum, thunder thighs, spaghetti arms. From an early age, kids learn they are judged for how they look. Both boys and girls are bombarded with messages of what they should look like and are shamed for not measuring up. When kids encounter conflict based on stereotypes of body image, they need the understanding and …

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Last Pick

by David Starr
edition: Paperback
also available: eBook
  • age: 10 to 13
  • Grade: 3.8
tagged: basketball, self-esteem & self-reliance, bullying, girls & women, special needs

Last Pick shows how determination can help overcome obstacles — even bullying. Growing up with a developmental condition that left her clumsy in both movement and speech, Jazz was teased and never had the chance to play team sports. Now rid of her symptoms, Jazz is ready to play basketball at her Vancouver junior high, but the reappearance of an …

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The Player

by Paul Coccia
edition: Paperback
also available: eBook
  • age: 13 to 18
  • Grade: 2.5
tagged: lgbt, dating & sex, hockey

Set in the traditionally homophobic world of amateur hockey, this book follows gay goalie Cooper in his struggle with his feelings for a teammate and coming out to his team. Cooper has been hooking up with teammate Pesh in secret, and has to play along when Pesh dates a girl and even tolerate locker-room homophobic talk. When Pesh outs Cooper onlin …

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Lone Runner

by Dirk McLean
edition: Paperback
also available: eBook
  • age: 10 to 13
  • Grade: 3.5
tagged: track & field, self-esteem & self-reliance, bullying

Set in a diverse neighbourhood in Scarborough, Ontario, this book follows Michaela as she goes from a solitary runner to an athlete who contributes to the success of her cross-country team. Discouraged by an incident at her mostly-white summer camp, Michaela comes into her own as part of her racially diverse school track team. Focusing on themes of …

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Rugby Rookies

by Mike Levitt
edition: Paperback
also available: eBook
  • age: 10 to 13
  • Grade: 2.2
tagged: self-esteem & self-reliance, friendship, girls & women

Highlighting rugby, the fastest growing sport in America, this book tackles the issue of girls playing full-contact sports. Maddy and her friends are a small town group determined to form a girls' junior rugby team while they navigate learning both the rules of the game and the rules set out by the school board. The adults are concerned about the g …

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Dragonfly Song

by Wendy Orr
edition: eBook
also available: Hardcover
  • age: 10 to 14
  • Grade: 5 to 10
tagged: fantasy & magic, survival stories, greek & roman, ancient civilizations

A gripping upper-middle-grade fantasy set in Bronze-Age Crete from Nim's Island author Wendy Orr

The girl has had many selves in her short life. The first she remembers is Aissa, the daughter of Mama and Dada, sister to Zufi who watched the goats. Then the Bull King's raiders came, and Mama said, "Don't make a sound till I come back." And when the v …

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God Loves Hair

read by Vivek Shraya, foreword by Cherie Dimaline
edition: Audiobook
also available: Paperback
  • age: 12 to 17
  • Grade: 7 to 12
tagged: self-esteem & self-reliance, lgbt, asian american, religion & faith

 

A tenth-anniversary edition of Vivek Shraya's first book: a YA story collection that celebrates racial, gender, and religious diversity.

In 2010, Vivek Shraya self-published God Loves Hair, her first book; since then, Vivek has published six more titles, including a novel, poetry collection, graphic novel, and children's picture book, while also wo …

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The Year Shakespeare Ruined My Life

by Dani Jansen
edition: Paperback
also available: eBook
  • age: 13 to 18
  • Grade: 8 to 12
tagged: theater & musicals, self-esteem & self-reliance, lgbt

Alison Green, desperate Valedictorian-wannabe, agrees to produce her school’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. That’s her first big mistake. The second is accidentally saying yes to a date with her oldest friend, Jack, even though she’s crushing on Charlotte.

Alison manages to stay positive, even when her best friend starts referring …