Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2008
Reading Level unavailable: Lexile 770
When 14-year-old Nazia experiences her father's passing, her life is turned upside-down. From a working-class family, Nazia drops out of school to help her mother and finds herself growing up all too quickly.
Houghton Mifflin, 2006
Reading Level: Young Adult
Football, Farm Life
"After spending her summer running the family farm and training the quarterback for her school's rival football team, sixteen-year-old D.J. decides to go out for the sport herself, not anticipating the reactions of those around her." (Titlewave)
Reading Level: Young Adult
Friendship, homosexuality, alcoholism, NY history
Living with a single, alcoholic mother, 13-year-old Davy finds his only comfort in Fred, his beloved dog. When Davy finally makes a friend in his new Manhattan school, life takes an awkward turn, and Davy struggles to puzzle out his own identity.
Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2007
Illustrator: Elicia Castaldi
Reading Level: 4.6
Middle School Students, Schools, Epistolary Fiction
In its unique format, the books presents numerous lists, notes, schedules, posters, ticket stubs, receipts, assignments' evaluations, etc. produced by or in some way connected to the teenager from whose view the book is written. This is an entertaining blend of various forms of writing perfectly formatted to intrigue the unique mindset of middle school students. The book is set in a form that somewhat mimics that of a scrapbook. Through the handwritten text displayed in the forms mentioned above, readers will easily connect to the "invisible" character/narrator.
Seventh-grader Raisin Rodriguez recently moved to Philadelphia, where she is trying to make friends at her new school. In a weblog, she chronicles her experiences that frequently meet with failure rather than success.
The Thao Jones--T.J. for short, is a naturally gifted athlete who refuses to join the school's athletic teams because he doesn't believe in the school's elitist view of athletes. Instead, he gathers some of the school's underdogs and social outcasts and starts a swim team for the school, which has no swimming pool. T.J.'s wit and respect for his teammates leads them to earn letter jackets. His leadership both in and out of water leads readers to check their own actions (and inactions) as related to those less popular.
Tessa knows her brother, Scott, is prohibited from riding around with Kevin, but she doesn't tattle on him. When Scott never makes it home that night, Tessa blames herself and wonders if things would have ended differently if she would have told her parents with whom Scott was. Tessa experiences various struggles as her family members each have their own individual ways of grieving the loss.