* Denotes Top Ten List
** Denotes In the Margins Fiction and Nonfiction Award
*** Denotes Social Justice /Advocacy Award
** WORKMAN, PD. Tattooed Teardrops. - Top Fiction Award!
PD Workman. August 2014. 292p. PB $15.95.
Fresh out of juvie and anxious for a clean start in life, Tamara's plans are to stay out of trouble and not break her probation. But her ex-cellmate, Glock is obsessed and won't leave her alone. As Tamara's life begins to slowly unravel she's not sure if she can hold it together with the choices she faces.
BROWN, Kevin. Hard Knocks High: Project Windows.
Jank Publishing. September 2015. 240p. PB $9.95.
Tafari King is a young man living in a rough neighborhood in the Bronx. He is raised by a single mother who works hard to keep him away from the troubles of the street. Tafari appreciates his overprotective mother but then again he understands that he has to toughen up if he is to survive all the daily dangers of living.
CRAIG, Kevin. Burn Baby Burn Baby.
Curiosity Quills Press. December 2014. 148 p. PB $12.99.
Francis Fripp endured years of abuse from his dad, culminating in a horrific burning incident when he was in elementary school. Now at 17, he continues to suffer from the tormenting and bullying of his peers because of his physical scars. Francis' emotional scars and lack of self-esteem cause him even greater self-harm; he does not think he is worthy of romantic attention from the new girl in school, Rachel Higgins. He also believes that the long friendship and unconditional support of Trig are undeserved.
DESIR, C. Bleed Like Me. Simon Pulse.
October 2014. 288p. HC $17.99.
This is the story of the heartbreaking romance between self-destructive and lonely Gannon and her controlling and damaged boyfriend, Brooks. As their relationship grows, so does their desperation. There is little to be won in such an obsessive partnership.
* FRANK, E.R. Dime. Simon Teen.
May 2015. 336p. HC $17.99.
Thirteen year old Dime thought Daddy was different. She believes she has found the long sought-after love and support she needs. What she thinks she has, soon crumbles when she is told she now had to earn her stay and is sent to the streets to make her way. When she discovers a young 10 year old girl alone in a locked room with video equipment, she is finally shocked straight and can't imagine what type of person could do something so heinous to a young child. Dime knows she has to get away, but does she have the strength to escape? Can she help the others?
FREEMAN, F. Rose: A Modernization.
Read Select. July 2015. 147p. PB $12.99.
Like Sleeping Beauty, Rose is bewitched--not by a prick of her finger, but by her intoxicating addiction to drugs. As she spins out of control, her father is faced with the fear that his daughter will succumb to the same fate he endured as a young man--a life of desperation and drug abuse.
HIGH, Linda Oatman. Teeny Little Grief Machines.
Saddleback. July 2014. 243p. PB $9.95.
Lexi's father is in jail, her stepmother is mentally absent, her severely autistic brother is in his own world, and her infant sister is dead. Through her poetry, Lexi narrates her life, from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows.
GEREAUX, Tara. Size of a Fist.
Thistledown Press. October 2015. 62p. PB $12.95.
How do you make amends for a tragedy that you caused? After an evening of drinking, Addy, in a game of chicken, hits Jonas with a car. Feeling responsible, Addy begins to learn more about Jonas, who has been an outcast in their small town, but she also has to balance the outrage of her boyfriend, Craig.
JEAN, Emiko. We'll Never Be Apart.
HMH Books for Young Readers. October 2015. 288p. HC $17.99.
Lots of twists and turns with arson, revenge, sibling rivalry, and romance encapsulate this novel. Alice and Celia are identical twins--Alice is the good one and Celia the evil one. Growing up in a series of foster homes, the sisters meet Jason, a young man who Alice becomes increasingly close and dependent upon. But Celia is jealous and begins setting fires, which eventually leads to the killing of innocent victims--including Jason. Alice finds herself in a mental hospital, seeking revenge for the death of her lover.
* KERN, Peggy. Little Peach.
Balzer + Bray. March 2015. 208p. HC $17.99.
When Chelle's grandfather dies, she is faced with her mom's drug addiction and the inappropriate sexual advances of her mother's boyfriend. Would she be better off following her friend Erica to the place called the Pink Houses? She knows nothing about the city or the houses, she only knows she has a friend there. Hopefully she can find her.
* LABOUCANE-BENSON, Patti. The Outside Circle.
House of Anansi Press. June 2015. 264p. PB $19.95.
In this powerful graphic novel, two First Nations siblings are given a chance to change their destiny. Pete and his younger brother Joey were raised in a neighborhood of gang and drug violence. When Pete is arrested and sentenced for murder, he discovers that his gang associates are now seeking out his little brother as a replacement.
MYERS, Walter Dean. Monster: A Graphic Novel.
Armistad. October 2015. 160p. PB $9.99.
This graphic novel adaptation of the first Printz Award introduces the story of Steve Harmon's arrest and trial for robbery and murder to a new generation of fans. Steve's reluctant refusal to admit the full truth about what actually happened and the cloudiness of his guilt is a storyline that is still prevalent in headlines today.
PARSONS, Ash. Still Waters.
Philomel. April 2015. 320p. HC $17.99.
How do you get yourself out of a dangerous and potentially deadly relationship and situation? Jason has grown up knowing that his fists are the one way to solve problems, but when he is approached by the most popular kid in school, who is willing to pay Jason for his "skills," Jason is faced with increasingly difficult decisions. In desperation can Jason make any good choices?
QUNITERO, Isabel. Gabi, a Girl in Pieces.
Cinco Puntos. October 2014. 208p. HC $17.95 (PB) ISBN 9781935955948.
Gabi is often mistaken as white, but she's Latina through and through. One of her best friends is gay, and the other is pregnant after being raped at a party. How can she help them while dealing with her father's meth addiction and her mother's own surprise pregnancy?
REYNOLDS, Jason, and Brendan Kiely. All American Boys.
Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books. September 2015. 320p. HC $17.99.
Quinn and Rashad go to the same school but live in different worlds. When Quinn's best friend's brother, a cop, puts Rashad in the hospital, things change. The town, the school, the basketball team...everyone is choosing sides. Can anyone win?
RODMAN, Sean. Tap Out.
Orca Soundings. April 2015. 128p. PB $9.95.
Fight Club is an easy way for Dar to make money to help his mother pay the rent in their low-income apartment while his dad does time in jail--especially when his dad finds out and encourages him to man up and show the other kids he's tough. Dar's popularity rises as the money rolls in, but his dad went to prison for fighting, and Dar doesn't want that life. Can he get out of Fight Club as easily as he got in?
SIMONE, Ni-Ni. Down By Law.
Dafina Pub. July 2015. 288p. PB $9.95.
Isis Carter developed street smarts at a young age. Now she is sixteen and hooking up with bad boy, Fresh. Will she follow his path or use her smarts to save herself?
SCHMIDT, Gary D. Orbiting Jupiter.
Clarion. October 2015. 192p. HC $17.99.
Fourteen year old teen dad Joseph is placed in a foster home with Jack and his family. Joseph has the history of an abusive past and has run away from several group homes. Jack learns that Joseph is father to a baby and is his child's only surviving parent. Joseph is desperate to find his daughter. When Joseph's estranged father re-enters the picture there are shocking consequences that turn out to be irreversible.
SITOMER, Alan Lawrence. Noble Warrior.
Disney-Hyperion. July 2015. 400p. HC $17.99.
In this second installment of the Noble Warrior series, MD, a tough teenage MMA undercover military agent from Detroit, cannot seem to escape from the grip of his blood family and the gang that shaped his young life. He is planted into the state prison to access the gang leaders who are believed to be holding his girlfriend captive when he comes face-to face with his father. Complex, with realistic relationships and vivid prison scenes, this a fast and thought-provoking read.
THOMAS, Lex. Quarantine 3: The Burnouts.
Egmont. July 2014. 272p. HC $17.95
In the third novel in this trilogy, David and Will may have escaped the physical imprisonment of the high school, but the outside world doesn't prove any more welcome to carriers of the virus. Meanwhile, the violence and insanity continues inside the school.
VILLAREAL, Ray. On the Other Side of the Bridge.
Arte Público Press. October 2014. PB $11.95.
Thirteen year old Lon Rodriguez's life goes from a bad situation to a nightmare in one night. His mother is killed in a random act of violence and then Lon is left to be cared for by his alcoholic father. His father's inability to care for him leaves them homeless and living in a shelter. Can things get any worse?
© 2012 Colorado State Library