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Contemporary Issues/Social Problems


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Featured Books

Lost and Found Cat

By: Doug Kuntz and Amy Shrodes
illustrated by: Sue Cornelison

This heartwarming true story about one lost cat's journey to be reunited with his refugee family gently introduces children to a difficult topic and shows how ordinary people can help with compassion and...

The Last Message Received

By: Emily Trunko
illustrated by: Zoë Ingram

Named one of the Top 10 Most Viral Blogs by Mashable, the Tumblr The Last Message Received—created by 16-year-old Emily Trunko—is now available as a gift book!   What if a message someone...

Dear My Blank

By: Emily Trunko
illustrated by: Lisa Congdon

From the popular Tumblr of the same name comes a collection of heart-warming, tear-jerking, and gut-wrenching anonymous letters that people never intended—or didn’t have the courage—to...


The Weight of Zero

By: Karen Fortunati

For fans of 13 Reasons Why and Girl in Pieces, this is a novel that shows the path to hope and life for a girl with mental illness.   Seventeen-year-old Catherine Pulaski knows Zero is coming for...

Tell Us Something True

By: Dana Reinhardt

For fans of Sarah Dessen, Jennifer Smith, E.L. Lockhart, and John Green, this delightful, often comic coming-of-age novel stars the lovable, brokenhearted River, the streets of LA, and an irresistible...

This is the Part Where You Laugh

By: Peter Brown Hoffmeister

"So real it hurts."—David Arnold, New York Times bestselling author of Kids of AppetiteFans of Andrew Smith and Matt de la Pena will be captivated by this summer-in-the-life of a teenage guy...


The Turn of the Tide

By: Rosanne Parry

From acclaimed author Rosanne Parry comes an exciting and tender friendship story about two cousins looking for their destiny.   On a beautiful day in June, the ground broke open.   In Japan,...

Placebo Junkies

By: J.C. Carleson

Going Bovine meets Trainspotting in this gritty portrait of at-risk teens gaming the prescription drug trial system.   Meet Audie: Professional lab rat. Guinea pig. Serial human test subject. For...


Featured Resources:

Girl Rising Educator Guide (with CCSS tie-ins)

By: Tanya Lee Stone with Girl Rising

One Girl with Courage is a Revolution. In collaboration with the makers of the film Girl Rising, this stunning nonfiction book shows how educating girls in developing countries can break the cycle of...

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Lillian’s Right to Vote Activities (with CCSS tie-ins)

By: Jonah Winter

An elderly African American woman, en route to vote, remembers her family’s tumultuous voting history in this picture book publishing in time for the fiftieth anniversary of the Voting Rights Act...

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Leontyne Price: Voice of a Century Activity Sheets (with CCSS tie-ins)

By: Carole Boston Weatherford
Guide Prepared by: Colleen Carroll, children's book author, curriculum writer-developer, and education consultant

A stunning picture-book biography of iconic African American opera star Leontyne Price.
 
Born in a small town in Mississippi in 1927, the daughter of a midwife and a sawmill worker, Leontyne...

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The Winter Horses Educator Guide with CCSS tie-ins

By: Philip Kerr

From Philip Kerr, the New York Times bestselling author of the Bernie Gunther novels, comes a breathtaking journey of survival in the dark days of WWII in Ukraine, a country that remains tumultuous...

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Snowflakes Fall Educator Guide with CCSS tie-ins

By: Patricia MacLachlan
illustrated by: Steven Kellogg

In Snowflakes Fall, Newbery Medalist Patricia MacLachlan and award-winning artist Steven Kellogg portray life’s natural cycle: its beauty, its joy, and its sorrow. Together, the words and pictures...

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Enrique’s Journey

By: Sonia Nazario

Adapted for young people, this edition of Enrique’s Journey is written by Sonia Nazario and based on the adult book of the same name. It is the true story of Enrique, a teenager from Honduras, who...

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Gated Book Talk

By: Amy Christine Parker

BOOK TALK
Only three months from the end of the world remain, and teens Lyla, Will, Brian and Marie train daily to protect their community from the outsiders who surround them.  Disobey the rules...

My Chemical Mountain

By: Corina Vacco

BOOK TALK
Jason’s world has been destroyed by the Corporate America chemical plant in town. Toxic waste, giant trash dumps, chemicals of unknown origin spilling into the water…all of it poisoning...

Mountains Beyond Mountains

By: by Tracy Kidder, adapted for young people by Michael French

BOOK TALK
Mountains Beyond Mountains introduces Dr. Paul Farmer, a remarkable man who spends his time treating the illnesses of the poor and disenfranchised.  Working in impossible circumstances,...


Revenge of a Not-So-Pretty Girl

By: Carolita Blythe

BOOK TALK
For Catholic School girls, Faye and her friends Caroline and Gillian are mean. Their current scheme involves going uptown and mugging former film star, Evelyn Rider. The girls don’t anticipate...

Out of Nowhere

By: Maria Padian

BOOK TALK
Tom Bouchard occupied his time with three things: soccer, school and girls. Not necessarily in that order. Senior year was going to be sweet for Tom and his best friend Donnie. But when...

Beholding Bee

By: Kimberly Newton Fusco

BOOK TALK
Orphan. Outcast. Freak. Bee is all of those things. She is taunted by almost everyone because of the birthmark on her face. There are no options for a home or family. She has lived her entire...