Childhood & Youth

"We look at the world once, in childhood," writes poet Louise Glück. "The rest is memory." As adults, our childhood may lie in the past, but its influence never leaves us. This collection gathers texts that depict and examine the innocence and insights of childhood and youth.

Publication year 2009Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Fantasy, Realistic Fiction, Magical Realism

Publication year 1974Genre Short Story Collection, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Aging, Relationships: Grandparents, Society: War, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality

Publication year 2005Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Identity: Mental Health, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family, Society: Class, Society: Nation, Society: Politics & Government, Society: War, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Realistic Fiction, Historical Fiction

A Bottle in the Gaza Sea (2005) is a young adult novel by French author and translator Valérie Zenatti. It was first published in French as Une bouteille dans la mer de Gaza. The novel begins when 17-year-old Israeli Tal Levine learns about a bombing at a neighborhood café. She is moved to send a letter in a bottle, which reaches 20-year-old Palestinian Naïm Al-Farjouk. Tal included her email address, and they begin corresponding. Initially... Read A Bottle in the Gaza Sea Summary


Publication year 2014Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Realistic Fiction, Disability, Parenting, Children's Literature

Lisa Graff’s Absolutely Almost (2014) is a middle-grade novel about self-acceptance and recognizing one’s own worth. The story follows 10-year-old Albie’s journey along this path. Albie has never been the best at anything, especially anything to do with school. He continually falls short of others’ expectations, especially his parents’. However, his new nanny, Calista, sees him differently—and gradually, she helps Albie discover his strengths and take pride in himself.Graff is an American writer who pens... Read Absolutely Almost Summary


Publication year 1956Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Classic Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Southern Literature, Holidays & Occasions, Grief / Death

Originally published in Mademoiselle magazine in December 1956, “A Christmas Memory” remains one of Truman Capote’s (1924-1984) most anthologized short stories. A midcentury author with a clear and evocative prose style, Capote is remembered for his novella Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1958) and for his groundbreaking work of true-crime nonfiction, In Cold Blood (1966). “A Christmas Memory” returns to the rural Alabama setting of the author’s childhood to recount a magical Christmas season shared between the... Read A Christmas Memory Summary


Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Regret, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Femininity, Identity: Gender, Identity: Masculinity, Identity: Mental Health, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Life/Time: The Past, Life/Time: MidlifeTags Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Psychological Fiction, Addiction / Substance Abuse

Publication year 2008Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Identity: Race, Identity: Sexuality, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: MusicTags Historical Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Music, African American Literature

After Tupac and D Foster, published in 2008, is Jacqueline Woodson’s fifth middle grade novel and her 24th book overall. It is a coming-of-age story of three African American girls who are best friends growing up in Queens, NY, in the 1990s. During this time, the cultural icon Tupac Shakur is shot, imprisoned, and ultimately killed in a second shooting. These events have a huge impact on the main characters as they grow up and... Read After Tupac and D Foster Summary


Publication year 1996Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Identity: Masculinity, Identity: Femininity, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Society: Class, Society: War, Society: Economics, Relationships: Siblings, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Marriage, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Relationships: Friendship, Identity: Disability, Identity: Gender, Life/Time: Birth, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: The Future, Life/Time: The Past, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Class, Politics / Government, Religion / Spirituality, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Grief / Death

A Game of Thrones is a 1996 epic fantasy novel by George R. R. Martin and is the first in his long-running A Song of Ice and Fire series. The novel introduces the audience to the fictional world of Westeros, where characters become embroiled in a complicated web of plots, conspiracies, and betrayals as they pursue power. A Game of Thrones won numerous awards on publication and was adapted for television in 2011. This guide... Read A Game of Thrones Summary


Publication year 1979Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Daughters & SonsTags Historical Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

A Gathering of Days: A New England Girl’s Journal, 1830-1832 is the best-known book by children’s author and educator Joan W. Blos. The novel is presented as the fictional journal of Catherine Hall, a young girl living in New Hampshire before the Civil War. Through Catherine’s journal entries, the novel portrays the daily life, challenges, and changes in a young girl’s world over two years, including personal loss, the complexities of friendship, and an encounter... Read A Gathering of Days Summary


Publication year 1961Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Life/Time: Birth, Identity: Mental Health, Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: The Past, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Midlife, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Marriage, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Society: Class, Society: Colonialism, Society: Community, Self Discovery, Values/Ideas: Literature, Society: EconomicsTags Historical Fiction, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Poverty, Finance / Money / Wealth, Depression / Suicide, Class, Colonialism / Postcolonialism, Indian Literature

A House for Mr. Biswas is a 1961 novel by V. S. Naipaul. The story takes a postcolonial perspective of the life of a Hindu Indian man in British-owned and occupied Trinidad. Now regarded as one of Naipaul's most significant novels, A House for Mr. Biswas has won numerous awards and has been adapted as a musical, a radio drama, and a television show. This guide is written using an eBook version of the 2001... Read A House for Mr. Biswas Summary


Publication year 1865Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Fantasy, Victorian Period, Classic Fiction, Action / Adventure, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by British author Lewis Carroll (1832-1838) is a classic work of nonsense literature first published in 1865. Originally intended for children, the novel has become a perennial favorite of adults thanks to Carroll’s sophisticated wordplay and humor. Carroll’s work has influenced or inspired authors as diverse as James Joyce and Neil Gaiman, surrealist painters like Salvador Dalí, and the philosopher Gilles Deleuze. The novel has never been out of print and... Read Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland Summary


Publication year 1981Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: ColonialismTags Historical Fiction, Action / Adventure

Publication year 2002Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: FearTags Lyric Poem

Publication year 2021Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Realistic Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Animals, Health / Medicine, Education

Publication year 1986Genre Essay Collection, NonfictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Society: CommunityTags Self Help, Humor, Philosophy, Inspirational

In his compilation of essays, All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten, Robert Fulghum studies the simplicity embedded in everyday experiences. First published in 1989, this collection captivated a global audience, becoming a cultural touchstone as a #1 New York Times bestseller and selling over 7 million copies. Fulghum draws from his life experiences to craft this collection of essays. This collection, which falls within the self-help, motivational, and personal transformation genres... Read All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Mental Health, Relationships: Friendship, Identity: Disability, Self Discovery, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: FamilyTags Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Korean Literature

Publication year 1998Genre Poem, FictionThemes Society: Nation, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Society: ImmigrationTags Immigration / Refugee

Publication year 2001Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Children's Literature, Allegory / Fable / Parable, Bullying, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Relationships

Margaret Peterson Haddix’s Among the Impostors is the second book in the Shadow Children series, following Among the Hidden. The titles published after Among the Impostors are Among the Betrayed, Among the Barons, Among the Brave, Among the Enemy, and Among the Free. Haddix is also the author of several other books for young adults and has won several awards for her work. They include the Reading Association Children’s Book Award, ALA Best Books for... Read Among the Impostors Summary


Publication year 1987Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Education

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Annie Dillard wrote the autobiographical memoir An American Childhood (1987). In this memoir, Dillard (born in 1945) describes her intellectual development, from her first true intellectual awakening, at 5 years old, through her busy and happy pre-teen years and her turbulent adolescence, to her acceptance at a prestigious private college at age 18. An exploration of her childhood during the 1950s, this memoir operates as a coming-of-age story in which the author... Read An American Childhood Summary


Publication year 1996Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: FamilyTags Poverty, Irish Literature

Angela’s Ashes is a 1996 memoir written by Frank McCourt. It recounts his challenging upbringing in the slums of Limerick, Ireland. At the heart of the memoir is McCourt’s account of the people and events of his childhood, and how he tried to make sense of the world around him. McCourt narrates in the present tense and follows a generally chronological order, with his time in America as a young child and then later as... Read Angela's Ashes Summary


Publication year 1948Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Identity: Mental Health, Relationships: Marriage, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Society: WarTags Classic Fiction, American Literature, Depression / Suicide, WWII / World War II

“A Perfect Day for Bananafish” is a short story by iconic American author J. D. Salinger. First published in The New Yorker in 1948 and later published in the collection Nine Stories (1953), it is considered one of Salinger’s breakthrough works, establishing the unique voice, flair for character, energetic dialogue, and inventive style that would become his trademarks. The story centers on a young New York City couple, Seymour and Muriel Glass, and the bizarre... Read A Perfect Day for Bananafish Summary


Publication year 1919Genre Poem, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: NostalgiaTags Lyric Poem, Parenting, Mythology

“A Prayer for my Daughter” by William Butler (W.B.) Yeats was originally published in his collection Michael Robartes and the Dancer in 1921. This book also includes one of Yeats’s most famous poems—“the Second Coming”—and was Yeats’s eighth collection of lyrical poems. “A Prayer for my daughter” was written in 1919, a year that marked the beginning of the Irish War of Independence. The war lasted until 1921 and heavily influenced Yeats. The poem’s location... Read A Prayer for My Daughter Summary


Publication year 2012Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Community, Emotions/Behavior: Apathy, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Midlife, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Nurture v. Nature, Relationships: Family, Self Discovery, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags Historical Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Publication year 2004Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: FamilyTags Crime / Legal

A Rip in Heaven: A Memoir of Murder and Its Aftermath (2004) is a true-crime story and memoir by Jeanine Cummins. The book recounts the violent rape and murder of two young women, Julie and Robin Kerry, the author’s cousins, and focuses on the aftermath for their families. Tom Cummins, their cousin who is present during the crimes, is thrown off a bridge into the Mississippi River with the two women but survives. Innocent, he... Read A Rip in Heaven Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Emotions/Behavior: FearTags Historical Fiction, Children's Literature, Asian Literature, Realistic Fiction, Arts / Culture, History: Asian, Poverty, American Literature

A Single Shard (2001) is an award-winning, middle-grade historical novel by Korean American author Linda Sue Park. Park has written multiple children’s books, picture books, and volumes of poetry. Some of her better-known titles include A Long Walk to Water (2010), The Thirty-Nine Clues series in nine volumes (2010), and Prairie Lotus (2020). Much of her historical fiction is based on Korean history. A Single Shard is intended for readers in grades 5 to 7... Read A Single Shard Summary


Publication year 1973Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Society: CommunityTags Grief / Death, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Siblings, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Society: Community, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Relationships: MothersTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Historical Fiction

Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Grandparents, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Mothers, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: Community, Society: Education, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Education

Publication year 1913Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Lyric Poem, Science / Nature, Victorian Period

Publication year 2014Genre Short Story Collection, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 1941Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: AgingTags Classic Fiction, Southern Literature, American Literature

“A Visit of Charity” is a short story written by Eudora Welty, the first living writer published in the Library of America series. “A Visit of Charity” is one of 17 short stories in Welty’s collection A Curtain of Green, published in 1941 by Doubleday. The text referenced in this guide is from Eudora Welty: Stories, Essays, and Memoir, published by the Library of America in 1998.The main character, Marian, a 14-year-old Campfire Girl, decides... Read A Visit of Charity Summary


Publication year 1886Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Environment, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Science / Nature, Gender / Feminism, American Literature

“A White Heron” is the most popular short story by American author Sarah Orne Jewett. A work of American regionalism and romanticism, the tale emphasizes the setting, the human-animal connection, a celebration of nature, and individual experience. Jewett is a famous figure in literary regionalism, and her work often explores themes of the natural world. In “A White Heron,” Jewett uses literary techniques such as personification to make the environment and animals come alive as... Read A White Heron Summary


Publication year 2015Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Values/Ideas: Science & Technology, Relationships: Teams, Society: Education, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: RegretTags Realistic Fiction, Science / Nature, Education, Children's Literature, Bullying, Trauma / Abuse / Violence

Publication year 2007Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Black Arts Movement, Love / Sexuality

Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Literature, Relationships: Friendship, Society: Community, Relationships: Siblings, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Society: Education, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Society: Politics & Government, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 1841Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family, Life/Time: The PastTags Classic Fiction, Historical Fiction, Victorian Period

Publication year 2011Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Society: Education, Natural World: Nurture v. NatureTags Parenting, Asian Literature, Allegory / Fable / Parable

Amy Chua’s memoir, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother (2011), depicts Chua’s experience raising two American daughters according to Chinese cultural standards. Chua is a Yale law professor specializing in globalization and ethnic conflict. She is also a second-generation Chinese American, and her husband is Jewish. Chua’s strict approach is influenced by the parenting methods used by her own parents, which clash with those of her husband. Chua’s memoir was a New York Times bestseller... Read Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother Summary


Publication year 1982Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Self DiscoveryTags Humor, Realistic Fiction

Publication year 2020Genre Novel/Book in Verse, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Identity: Race, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Self DiscoveryTags Auto/Biographical Fiction, Historical Fiction, Sports, African American Literature, Race / Racism

Publication year 2004Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: Siblings, Society: Community, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Identity: Language, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: HopeTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction

Publication year 1955Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Siblings, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & PrideTags Realistic Fiction, Humor

Publication year 2018Genre Graphic Memoir , NonfictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Self Discovery, Society: Class, Society: Immigration, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Humor, Action / Adventure, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Publication year 2019Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Realistic Fiction

Publication year 2014Genre Biography, NonfictionThemes Identity: Gender, Identity: Sexuality, Society: Community, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Identity: Masculinity, Identity: Femininity, Self DiscoveryTags LGBTQ, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Publication year 2023Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Self Discovery, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Siblings, Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: HopeTags Historical Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Romance, WWII / World War II, Class, Education, Finance / Money / Wealth, Love / Sexuality, Relationships, Military / War, Grief / Death, History: World, Parenting

Publication year 2011Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Spoken Word Poetry, Parenting

Publication year 1915Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Natural World: Appearance & RealityTags Lyric Poem, Science / Nature, American Literature, Modernism

Publication year 1966Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Natural World: Nurture v. Nature

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: The Past, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Climate, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Food, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Grandparents, Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags Fantasy, Magical Realism, Children's Literature

Publication year 2014Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: FriendshipTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Action / Adventure, Arts / Culture, Relationships

Book Scavenger (2015) is the debut novel by children’s author Jennifer Chambliss Bertman. Upon publication, it immediately became a New York Times bestseller and soon after the book was named an Amazon Book of the Year, Indie Top Ten Pick, and received more than 20 state awards and nominations. Book Scavenger has since been translated into 12 languages. Book Scavenger is the first volume in a Middle Grade Detective series of the same name. Other... Read Book Scavenger Summary


Publication year 2016Genre Biography, NonfictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Midlife, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Friendship, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Fame, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Music, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Music, Arts / Culture, Mental Illness, Social Justice

Publication year 1952Genre Poem, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Fear

Publication year 1984Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: The Past, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Relationships: Family

IntroductionMany readers are familiar with Roald Dahl (1916-90) as the author of popular stories such as James and the Giant Peach (1961) and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (1964). Dahl published 19 novels and short story collections for children. He was born in Wales to a Norwegian family and spent most of his life in England. He was an intelligence officer and fighter pilot in the Royal Air Force during World War II and suffered... Read Boy: Tales of Childhood Summary


Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Disability, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: FamilyTags Romance, Realistic Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Disability

Publication year 1977Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Identity: Masculinity, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: GriefTags Classic Fiction, Grief / Death, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Children's Literature, Poverty

Since its 1977 publication, Bridge to Terabithia has become a classic children’s novel. The author, Katherine Paterson, wrote the novel after her son’s best friend was killed by lightning. The novel won a Newbery Medal and is beloved by readers all over the world. Bridge to Terabithia explores the transformative power of friendship, the power of childhood imagination, and the process of grief. Because Bridge to Terabithia deals with grief and death, it is best... Read Bridge To Terabithia Summary


Publication year 1999Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Society: ColonialismTags Historical Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature, Race / Racism, Poverty, African American Literature

Bud, Not Buddy is a 1999 children’s realistic historical novel by American author Christopher Paul Curtis. Ten-year-old protagonist Bud Caldwell is an orphan living in Flint, Michigan in 1936. Four years after the death of his mother and after a series of abusive and neglectful foster homes, Bud sets out to find his father, whom he believes is the locally famous jazz musician Herman E. Calloway of Grand Rapids. Bud encounters a host of characters... Read Bud, Not Buddy Summary


Publication year 1996Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Natural World: Food, Identity: RaceTags Lyric Poem

Publication year 1898Genre Play, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Society: War, Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Society: Colonialism, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Historical Fiction, Romance, Politics / Government, Play: Drama

Publication year 1996Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth

Cajas de Carton, the English title of which is The Circuit: Stories from the Life of a Migrant Child is a collection of autobiographical short stories by writer Francisco Jimenez, who was born in Jalisco, Mexico and crossed the US-Mexico border into the United States as a boy. Jimenez writes about his experience living and working in labor camps and tent cities with his family, and the many long years of intermittent schooling and constant... Read Cajas de Carton (The Circuit) Summary


Publication year 2007Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Love, Life/Time: The Past, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Identity: LanguageTags Romance, LGBTQ, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

IntroductionCall Me By Your Name by André Aciman is a piece of literary fiction in the subgenres of romance literature and queer literature. Published in 2007, the novel became a bestseller, received positive critical reception, and won the 2008  Lambda Literary Award for Gay Fiction. The 2017 film adaptation of Call Me By Your Name, directed by Luca Guadagnino and starring Timothée Chalamet and Armie Hammer, won, among other accolades, the Academy Award for Best... Read Call Me By Your Name Summary


Publication year 1997Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: FriendshipTags Humor, Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Dav Pilkey’s graphic novel for children, The Adventures of Captain Underpants (1997), spawned a long list of sequels and adaptations in other media. The Captain Underpants series has won numerous awards, including the Garden State Children's Book Awards (Children's Fiction) 2000, the Buckeye Children's Book Award (Grades 3-5) 2001, and the Pennsylvania Young Reader's Choice Award (Grades K-3) 2000.Plot SummaryThe story begins by introducing two best friends, George and Harold. They love to pull pranks... Read Captain Underpants Summary


Publication year 1952Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Life/Time: Aging, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Fate, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Natural World: Animals, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: GratitudeTags Classic Fiction, Allegory / Fable / Parable, Children's Literature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Animals

Charlotte’s Web was written by E. B. White, illustrated by Garth Williams, and first published in 1952. It is considered a quintessential American children’s fiction novel and has been adapted into two films (1973, 2006) and a stage musical. Over the years, Charlotte’s Web has been awarded the Newbery Honor Award for children’s books, the George C. Stone Center for Children’s Books Recognition of Merit Award, the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award, and the Massachusetts Children’s... Read Charlotte's Web Summary


Publication year 1963Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: MemoryTags Narrative / Epic Poem, Love / Sexuality

Publication year 2006Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Food, Sociology

Chew On This: Everything You Don’t Want To Know About Fast Food, co-written by Eric Schlosser and Charles Wilson, aims to show young readers “the ripple effect near and far” of the fast food industry (199). Schlosser and Wilson go on to show that fast food can affect consumers on the immediate level of their own bodies and on the less obvious level of destroying indigenous food cultures.In the Introduction, Schlosser and Wilson describe the... Read Chew On This Summary


Publication year 1989Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Identity: RaceTags Civil Rights / Jim Crow, Race / Racism, Poverty

Publication year 1999Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Chinese Literature, History: Asian

Chinese Cinderella: The Secret Story of an Unwanted Daughter (1999) is the autobiography of Adeline Yen Mah and covers her experience growing up in an abusive household during a politically tumultuous era in Chinese history (1937-1952). Yen Mah, who now lives in the United States, made the decision to fulfill her childhood dreams of writing professionally after practicing medicine for several decades according to her father’s wishes. Chinese Cinderella is an abridged version of her... Read Chinese Cinderella Summary


Publication year 1995Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Relationships: Siblings, Values/Ideas: Literature

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Good & EvilTags Fantasy, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction

Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Science & Technology, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Relationships: Teams, Relationships: Family, Natural World: Climate, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Environment, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Relationships: Friendship, Natural World: Place, Values/Ideas: Order & ChaosTags Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Grandparents, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: The Past, Relationships: Fathers, Values/Ideas: Equality, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags African American Literature, Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Action / Adventure, Civil Rights / Jim Crow, History: U.S., Black Lives Matter, Grief / Death

Publication year 2002Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Mothers, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Natural World: Appearance & RealityTags Fantasy, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Relationships, Food

Neil Gaiman’s Coraline is a 2002 middle-grade horror novel that follows the titular character through a strange world of wonder and fear. Coraline must use her wit, her bravery, and the help of her allies to survive and escape the strange world. Coraline is a New York Times Bestseller and the winner of the 2003 Hugo Award for Best Novella. Coraline was adapted to a stop-motion animation film by the same name in 2009. This... Read Coraline Summary


Publication year 2019Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Relationships: Family, Society: Economics, Life/Time: Birth, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Parenting, Science / Nature, Self Help

Publication year 1956Genre Poem, FictionThemes Natural World: Environment, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Lyric Poem, Science / Nature, Race / Racism, African American Literature

Publication year 1983Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: FamilyTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction

Published in 1983 and winner of the 1984 Newberry Award, Beverly Cleary’s Dear Mr. Henshaw marks a departure for the novelist known for her books that celebrate the whimsy and adventurousness of childhood. Dear Mr. Henshaw is an epistolary novel, in which protagonist and aspiring author Leigh Botts narrates his story through letters and diary entries addressed to his favorite author, Mr. Henshaw. Leigh begins writing yearly letters to Mr. Henshaw in second grade but... Read Dear Mr. Henshaw Summary


Publication year 2022Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Class, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Historical Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Publication year 2007Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Relationships: Siblings, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Realistic Fiction, Humor, Relationships, Bullying

Diary of a Wimpy Kid is the first graphic novel in the titular series by Jeff Kinney. Since its initial publication in 2007, Diary of a Wimpy Kid has become a New York Times bestseller and 16 sequels have followed in the series. Diary of a Wimpy Kid is written in a diary format and documents the misadventures of middle school student Greg Heffley, who longs for popularity and hatches dozens of schemes to achieve... Read Diary of a Wimpy Kid Summary


Genre Poem, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Society: Education, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: The Past, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: NostalgiaTags Relationships, Agriculture, Lyric Poem

Publication year 2012Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & AngerTags Inspirational, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Race / Racism, Class, Poverty, Incarceration, Social Justice, Trauma / Abuse / Violence

Publication year 2016Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Humor, Fantasy, Animals

Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Fantasy, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Doll Bones (2013) is a middle grade novel written by Holly Black and illustrated by Eliza Wheeler. It blends gothic, horror, and fantasy elements. The novel follows three friends, Zach, Poppy, and Alice, as their make-believe games take a turn for the supernatural, sending them on an eerie quest to return a haunted doll to a gravesite before it wreaks havoc on their lives. The novel explores the challenges of growing up and the strain... Read Doll Bones Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Place, Relationships: Family, Society: Colonialism, Society: War, Identity: Indigenous

Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight (2002) is a memoir by Alexandra Fuller. Fuller recounts her childhood during the tumultuous years of the Rhodesian Bush War and life in post-independence Southern Africa. The author details her family‘s tragedies against the backdrop of political upheaval and social change as they settle on a series of struggling farms in Zimbabwe (then known as Rhodesia), Malawi, and Zambia. The memoir was a New York Times Notable Book for... Read Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight Summary


Publication year 2014Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Relationships: Siblings, Self DiscoveryTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Humor

Publication year 1968Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Values/Ideas: FameTags Satire, Lyric Poem, Race / Racism

Publication year 1986Genre Poem, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Relationships: Marriage, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: LoveTags Free verse, Relationships

Publication year 1987Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Life/Time: The Past, Values/Ideas: Equality, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Art, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Grandparents, Relationships: Mothers, Natural World: Nurture v. Nature, Natural World: Appearance & RealityTags Southern Literature, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Race / Racism

Ellen Foster is a work of adult fiction by US novelist Kaye Gibbons, first published by Algonquin Books in 1987. The novel was Gibbons’s debut, and it won the Sue Kaufman Prize for literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and a notable citation from the Ernest Hemingway Foundation. Critics praised the novel for its unsentimental outlook and the wry, distinct voice of its protagonist. Ellen, a young girl living in the American... Read Ellen Foster Summary


Publication year 2020Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Society: Immigration, Natural World: Place, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Siblings, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Fathers, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Life/Time: The Past, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Society: Education, Relationships: Marriage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Society: Politics & Government, Society: Nation, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Relationships: GrandparentsTags Auto/Biographical Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Immigration / Refugee, History: Middle Eastern

Publication year 1938Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Society: Education, Relationships: Teams, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Education, Philosophy

Publication year 2006Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Natural World: Place, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Relationships: Siblings, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Relationships: Family, Natural World: Environment, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Values/Ideas: Music, Identity: Gender, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Relationships: GrandparentsTags Fantasy, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature, Magical Realism

Fablehaven was written by Brandon Mull and first published in 2006. It is the first in a series about an ecological preserve for magical creatures. In the novel, middle-school-aged siblings Kendra and Seth take a trip to their grandparents’ land in rural Connecticut, which they soon realize is hiding magic of all types. The siblings explore the magical world they have discovered while learning how to be both brave and responsible.Fablehaven deals with themes concerning... Read Fablehaven Summary


Publication year 1996Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Music, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Self Discovery, Relationships: Fathers, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Identity: Sexuality, Identity: Race, Emotions/Behavior: FearTags Historical Fiction, LGBTQ, Magical Realism, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Love / Sexuality, Music, Religion / Spirituality, Race / Racism

Fall on Your Knees (1996), first-time novelist Ann-Marie MacDonald’s ambitious multigenerational family saga set in the early decades of the 20th century, moves from the bleak coastal towns of Canada’s Cape Breton Island to the bustling New York City of the Jazz Era. Recalling both the psychological richness of William Faulkner’s family sagas set in Yoknapatawpha County and the dark passions in the Gothic tales of Flannery O’Connor, Fall on Your Knees follows three very... Read Fall on your Knees Summary


Publication year 2023Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Identity: Femininity, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Identity: Mental Health, Identity: Race, Identity: Sexuality, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Marriage, Relationships: MothersTags Magical Realism, Historical Fiction, Fantasy

Publication year 1933Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Self Discovery, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Society: CommunityTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Historical Fiction, Agriculture, Animals, History: U.S., Parenting, Religion / Spirituality, Science / Nature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Publication year 1996Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Environment, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Natural World: FoodTags Action / Adventure, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Realistic Fiction

Set in Canada, American author Will Hobbs’s young-adult novel Far North (1996) follows Gabe Rogers, who lives with his grandparents in Austin, Texas. When Gabe tells his father that he wants to live with him in Canada, his father tells him he may on two conditions. First, Gabe must travel up north to experience the severe cold of the Northwest Territories for one year. Second, he must attend boarding school. While flying through Canada with... Read Far North Summary


Publication year 1945Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Aging

Publication year 2019Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Mortality & DeathTags Inspirational, Parenting, Religion / Spirituality

Publication year 2001Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: FamilyTags Romance, Humor

Flipped is a contemporary young adult novel by Wendelin Van Draanen. The main characters, Juli Baker and Bryce Loski, are neighbors in Mayfield, a fictional American town. Now in eighth grade, the two protagonists reveal the story of their relationship in a dual narrative of alternating first-person chapters that recount how Juli “flips” for Bryce at a young age but later decides she is not interested…right around the time Bryce finally “flips” for Juli. The... Read Flipped Summary


Publication year 1998Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: GriefTags Realistic Fiction, Grief / Death

Flying Solo (1998) by Ralph Fletcher takes place over one day in a sixth-grade classroom at Paulson Elementary School. The novel’s plot centers around a class having no teacher for the day when the substitute never shows up. With no adult supervision, emotions run high between the students, especially since it is the six-month anniversary of a classmate’s death.Booklist describes Flying Solo as “sad, poignant, and funny,” while School Library Journal praises the work as... Read Flying Solo Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Novel/Book in Verse, FictionThemes Identity: Mental Health, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Realistic Fiction, Disability

Publication year 2013Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Relationships: FathersTags Fantasy, Humor, Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Action / Adventure, Children's Literature

Publication year 2010Genre Novella, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth

Publication year 1992Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family, Self DiscoveryTags Coming of Age / Bildungsroman

Publication year 2018Genre Short Story Collection, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Gender, Identity: Indigenous, Identity: Race, Identity: Sexuality, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Society: Immigration, Values/Ideas: Justice & InjusticeTags Fantasy, Romance, Realistic Fiction, LGBTQ

Publication year 1996Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Language, Society: Education, Society: Community, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Literature, Emotions/Behavior: ConflictTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Humor, Modern Classic Fiction

Frindle is a 1996 middle grade novel by children’s author Andrew Clements and illustrated by Brian Selznick. The story follows a fifth-grade boy named Nick Allen who—both for fun and to exasperate his strict language arts teacher who has a special reverence for vocabulary—creates a new word for pen: “frindle.” Nick’s new word captures more attention than he expected, and soon the town and nation engage in a controversy surrounding how people ought to use... Read Frindle Summary


Publication year 1967Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Siblings, Values/Ideas: ArtTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Action / Adventure

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler is a 1967 children’s novel by E. L. Konigsburg. With elements of mystery and adventure, the novel follows two children who run away from home to hide out in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where they are drawn into a mystery involving a newly acquired sculpture, even as they learn about themselves and the world around them. Praised for its humor and characters, the novel won... Read From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler Summary


Publication year 1798Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Natural World: Nurture v. NatureTags Romanticism / Romantic Period

Publication year 1990Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Humor

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Teams, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Relationships: Friendship, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Fathers, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Identity: Masculinity, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Emotions/Behavior: FearTags Sports, Realistic Fiction, Disability

Publication year 1978Genre Short Story, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Identity: Gender, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Family, Relationships: SiblingsTags Indian Literature

“Games at Twilight” is a short story written by Indian author Anita Desai. It was originally published in 1978 in a collection titled Games at Twilight and Other Stories, which contains several texts that explore different aspects of Indian life in urban settings. That same year, Desai was nominated for the Winifred Holtby Memorial Prize and the Sahitya Akademi Award for her novel Fire on the Mountain. “Games at Twilight” focuses on a young boy who... Read Games at Twilight Summary


Publication year 1981Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: FathersTags Fantasy, Humor, Children's Literature, Magical Realism, British Literature

Publication year 1885Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Classic Fiction, French Literature

Germinal, written by French author Émile Zola, was originally published as a serial novel from November 1884 until February 1885. It was published fully in March 1885. The novel is the 13th of 20 in Zola’s Les Rougon-Macquart series, which focuses on the influence of heredity in two branches of a family during the Second French Empire. Considered one of Zola’s best novels, Germinal takes its name from a spring month in the French Republican... Read Germinal Summary


Publication year 2016Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Teams, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

Ghost is a 2016 novel by American author Jason Reynolds. Reynolds began his writing career as a poet and published his first novel, When I Was the Greatest, in 2014. Reynolds has won several accolades, including a Kirkus Prize, an NAACP Image Award, a Schneider Family Book Award, a Newbery Medal, and a Carnegie Medal. From 2020 to 2022, he was the Library of Congress’s National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, and he won the... Read Ghost Summary


Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Historical Fiction, Race / Racism, Social Justice, Children's Literature

Ghost Boys is a middle-grade novel by Jewell Parker Rhodes, an award-winning writer on the Black experience. Set in contemporary Chicago, the novel is a first-person narrative about the life and death of 12-year-old Jerome Rogers, a boy Officer Moore kills one afternoon as Jerome plays with a toy gun near his neighborhood. A popular and critical success that taps into the modern civil rights movement that is Black Lives Matter, this novel is a... Read Ghost Boys Summary


Publication year 2016Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Relationships: Siblings, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Fantasy, Grief / Death

Publication year 2015Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: MothersTags Existentialism

God Help the Child, the eleventh novel by critically-acclaimed writer Toni Morrison, was published in 2015. This guide is based on the 2015 Kindle book published by Borzoi Books, an Alfred A. Knopf imprint. One of Morrison’s few works with a contemporary setting and cast of characters, the novel explores themes related to the impact of racism and colorism on children, the prevalence of trauma such as child sexual abuse in the lives of children... Read God Help The Child Summary


Publication year 2022Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Parenting, Psychology, Self Help, Relationships

Publication year 1981Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Mothers, Society: Community, Society: War, Values/Ideas: Safety & DangerTags Historical Fiction, Military / War, WWII / World War II

Goodnight Mister Tom is a work of historical fiction written by Michelle Magorian and published in 1981. The novel is aimed at an audience of middle grade readers. It tells the story of eight-year-old William Beech, who, at the start of WWII, has to move with his abusive mother from an impoverished suburb of London to the countryside, where they are in the care of an elderly recluse, Thomas Oakley. The novel explores the impact... Read Goodnight Mister Tom Summary


Publication year 2002Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Friendship, Self Discovery

Publication year 2014Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Identity: Race, Self Discovery, Relationships: FamilyTags Fairy Tale / Folklore, Mystery / Crime Fiction, Fantasy, Children's Literature

Publication year 1954Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family

Publication year 1978Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Identity: Race, Identity: Femininity, Relationships: MothersTags Free verse, Race / Racism, Gender / Feminism

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: MusicTags Realistic Fiction, Diversity, Immigration / Refugee, Race / Racism, Bullying

Jacqueline Woodson's 2018 middle grade novel, Harbor Me, tracks the bonds of friendship that develop across six fifth-graders when they are given a unique opportunity to get to know each other. Amari, Esteban, Tiago, Ashton, Holly, and Haley Shondell McGrath (the narrator) are students with special learning needs in a Brooklyn school. Each friend has fears and frustrations that they share with each other over the year, and by opening up, they discover a collective... Read Harbor me Summary


Publication year 1964Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Self DiscoveryTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Mystery / Crime Fiction

Harriet the Spy (1964) is author and illustrator Louise Fitzhugh’s best-known novel. It appeared on The New York Times Book Review’s list “The Year’s Best Juveniles” the year it was published and is an enduring favorite among middle-grade readers. It is frequently included on lists of children’s classics, including the New York Public Library’s list of 100 Great Children’s Books. Fitzhugh published two other novels featuring the characters from Harriet the Spy: The Long Secret... Read Harriet the Spy Summary


Publication year 2004Genre Novel/Book in Verse, FictionThemes Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Teams, Relationships: Siblings, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Art, Life/Time: Birth, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: FamilyTags Relationships, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Children's Literature

Publication year 1994Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Mothers, Identity: Masculinity, Relationships: Fathers, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Values/Ideas: Win & LoseTags Sports, Addiction / Substance Abuse, Relationships, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Grief / Death

Originally published in 1993, Heart of a Champion is a young adult novel written by award-winning author Carl Deuker, whose work is primarily about sports and intended for young adult readers. The novel is the first-person narrative of a California boy, Seth, whose father died prematurely, leaving a huge void. Seth befriends Jimmy, whose love of baseball quickly becomes Seth’s passion as well. After the death of his friend after an alcohol-induced car crash, Seth... Read Heart of a Champion Summary


Publication year 2018Genre Graphic Novel/Book, FictionThemes Identity: Mental Health, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Relationships: Friendship, Identity: Sexuality, Identity: Masculinity, Identity: Gender, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Romance, LGBTQ, Bullying, Love / Sexuality, Relationships

Publication year 1881Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Gratitude, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Grandparents, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Flora/plants, Natural World: Food, Natural World: AnimalsTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Historical Fiction, Romanticism / Romantic Period

Swiss author Johanna Spyri originally published the middle-grade fiction novel Heidi in German in two volumes in 1880. The novel quickly became a beloved classic children’s book that has since been adapted into 25 film and television versions, including a 1968 made-for-TV movie and a very popular anime series in 1974. It has sold more than 50 million copies worldwide. Spyri was born in Hirzel, a Zurich village that shares a border with the German... Read Heidi Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Short Story Collection, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Apathy, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Identity: Gender, Identity: SexualityTags Psychological Fiction

Publication year 2012Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Natural World: Nurture v. Nature, Identity: Mental Health, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Society: Class, Society: Education, Values/Ideas: EqualityTags Education, Psychology, Parenting

Publication year 1973Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Humor, Realistic Fiction, Children's Literature

In the novel How to Eat Fried Worms, a boy accepts a $50 bet from a friend to eat 15 worms in 15 days, but as he nears victory, he faces a flurry of nasty tricks and traps that go wildly out of control. Written by Thomas Rockwell, son of the famous American illustrator Norman Rockwell, and published in 1973, the book sold over three million copies, won several awards, was a target of censors... Read How To Eat Fried Worms Summary


Publication year 2013Genre Graphic Novel/Book, NonfictionThemes Identity: Mental Health, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Mothers, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Emotions/Behavior: FearTags Humor, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Mental Illness, Depression / Suicide, Animals

Publication year 1977Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Identity: Mental Health, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Mystery / Crime Fiction, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction

I Am the Cheese is a suspenseful mystery novel published by the American novelist and journalist Robert Cormier in 1977. A longtime resident of the Northeast, Cormier centers his story on a teen boy, Adam Farmer, who believes he is biking from his Massachusetts hometown to a hospital in Vermont to visit his dad—a journalist who risked his life to testify against massive wrongdoing in government. In fact, Adam has been committed to a psychiatric... Read I Am the Cheese Summary


Publication year 2011Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Relationships: Teams, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Society: Education, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Sports, Inspirational, African American Literature, Auto/Biographical Fiction, Poverty, Education

I Beat the Odds: From Homelessness, to The Blind Side, and Beyond (2011) is a memoir written by NFL player Michael Oher and journalist Don Yaeger. It tells Oher’s story in his own words, describing his childhood and teen years up to his rookie season in the NFL. His story was first brought to the public’s attention in Michael Lewis’s book The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game, published in 2006. This book was made... Read I Beat the Odds Summary


Publication year 2012Genre Novel, FictionThemes Identity: Disability, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Family, Self DiscoveryTags Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction, Realistic Fiction

Publication year 2004Genre Poem, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Gender / Feminism, Parenting, Trauma / Abuse / Violence

Publication year 2014Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Art, Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Identity: Sexuality, Life/Time: The Past, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Siblings, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Trust & Doubt, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Win & LoseTags Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Magical Realism, Romance, Realistic Fiction, LGBTQ, Grief / Death, Love / Sexuality

I’ll Give You the Sun (2015) is an award-winning novel penned by Jandy Nelson about relationships, art, and destiny. It follows the story of twins Noah and Jude Sweetwine who once shared a close relationship but find themselves barely speaking to each other two years after their mother’s death.Jandy Nelson is an American author who writes young adult fiction. I’ll Give You the Sun is her second novel, which won numerous awards and honors, including... Read I'll Give You the Sun Summary


Publication year 2007Genre Poem, FictionThemes Identity: Race, Identity: Indigenous, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Identity: Language, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Society: Colonialism, Values/Ideas: Win & Lose, Values/Ideas: LiteratureTags Lyric Poem, Education, Arts / Culture, Diversity, History: The Americas, Race / Racism, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Colonialism / Postcolonialism

Publication year 2012Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Family

Publication year 1925Genre Poem, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: EqualityTags Narrative / Epic Poem, Harlem Renaissance, Race / Racism

Publication year 2019Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Health / Medicine, Parenting, Relationships

Publication year 2015Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Identity: Indigenous, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: The Past, Relationships: Grandparents, Society: Colonialism, Society: CommunityTags Historical Fiction, Realistic Fiction

Publication year 2007Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Good & EvilTags Mystery / Crime Fiction

In the Woods by Irish author Tana French is the story of two Dublin police detectives assigned to the Murder Squad. Published in 2007, this is the first book in the Dublin Murder Squad mystery-thriller series. The novel debuted to much critical praise for its intelligent plot and clever pacing. The novel’s main protagonist and narrators is Detective Adam Robert Ryan, who experienced a horrific ordeal as a child.At age 12, Adam loses his best... Read In the Woods Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Truth & Lies, Values/Ideas: Justice & InjusticeTags Historical Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Social Justice, Poverty

Publication year 2010Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Relationships: Friendship

Publication year 1986Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: FriendshipTags Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction

Stephen King’s 1986 novel It is widely considered to be one of the most frightening stories ever written. The book’s cast of characters clash against a monster that can assume the form of their worst fears, in a town called Derry that is itself a source of evil. It examines themes of friendship, family, grief, fear, and memory.The novel jumps frequently between past and present, but the structure of the story told in It can... Read It Summary


Publication year 1961Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Friendship, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Safety & Danger, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / PerseveranceTags Fantasy, Classic Fiction, Humor, Children's Literature, Magical Realism, Animals, Action / Adventure

James and the Giant Peach, by British author Roald Dahl was first published in 1961. This critically acclaimed children’s novel was made into an award-winning film in 1996. Dahl was born in 1916 in Wales and, in addition to writing both children and adult literature, he was a poet, screenwriter, and wartime fighter pilot. He is known as one of the 20th century’s greatest storytellers and has sold more than 250 million copies of his... Read James And The Giant Peach Summary


Publication year 2004Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Siblings, Society: Class, Society: Economics, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Power & GreedTags Historical Fiction, Grief / Death, Asian Literature, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Realistic Fiction, Civil Rights / Jim Crow, History: U.S., Parenting, Race / Racism, American Literature

Cynthia Kadohata’s first novel, Kira-Kira (2004), is a historical coming-of-age novel for middle-grade readers. The novel tells the story of the Japanese American Takeshima family, who live in the Chesterfield, Georgia, in the 1950s. The protagonist and first-person narrator is the younger daughter, Katie. The narrative spans seven years, involving the family’s move from Iowa to the South, where Katie’s parents become workers in the poultry industry. The narrative follows Katie as she awakens to... Read Kira-Kira Summary


Publication year 1998Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Fear, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Relationships: Family, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Society: ColonialismTags Realistic Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Trauma / Abuse / Violence, Animals, Love / Sexuality, LGBTQ

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Guilt, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Society: ClassTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Allegory / Fable / Parable, Class, Parenting, Science / Nature, Relationships, Futurism

Publication year 2005Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Natural World: Environment, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: The FutureTags Parenting, Education, Psychology

Publication year 2008Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Conflict, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hate & Anger, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Emotions/Behavior: Regret, Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Identity: Femininity, Identity: Masculinity, Identity: Sexuality, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Life/Time: Mortality & Death, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Appearance & Reality, Natural World: Place, Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Relationships: Family, Relationships: Fathers, Relationships: Marriage, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Siblings, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Society: War, Values/Ideas: Fate, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Justice & Injustice, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Mythology, Military / War

Publication year 2007Genre Novella, FictionThemes Society: Economics, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: TeamsTags Humor, Children's Literature, Realistic Fiction, Business / Economics, Class, American Literature

Lawn Boy, a novella by Gary Paulsen published in 2007, is a middle grade chapter book about a 12-year-old boy who receives an old lawn mower as a birthday gift from his grandmother. As underwhelming as the gift appears, this moment launches a sequence of events that ends with the boy owning $480,000 and being the sole investor of a heavyweight boxer. Full of quirky humor and digestible lessons in capitalism, Paulsen’s story leads the... Read Lawn Boy Summary


Publication year 2007Genre Book, NonfictionThemes Society: Education, Society: Class, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Education, Social Justice, Race / Racism

Jonathan Kozol’s Letters to a Young Teacher, originally published in 2007, is a collection of letters containing Kozol’s teaching advice for a new first grade schoolteacher named Francesca. The format of this book is inspired by Rainer Maria Rilke’s famous Letters to a Young Poet, which has become a model for advice books for young people in different professions and callings. Although some identifying elements have been changed, the book’s letters represent a real correspondence... Read Letters to a Young Teacher Summary


Publication year 2014Genre Autobiography / Memoir, NonfictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Identity: Race, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: Class, Values/Ideas: Art

Publication year 1886Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Mothers, Society: Class, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Family, Natural World: Nurture v. NatureTags Classic Fiction, Children's Literature, Victorian Period, British Literature

Publication year 1871Genre Novel, FictionThemes Society: Education, Relationships: Friendship, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Emotions/Behavior: Forgiveness, Emotions/Behavior: Joy, Emotions/Behavior: Love, Identity: Femininity, Identity: Masculinity, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Natural World: Environment, Natural World: Place, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Teams, Self Discovery, Society: Community, Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Classic Fiction, Historical Fiction, Children's Literature

Publication year 1990Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Coming of Age, Society: Immigration, Identity: Femininity, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Relationships: Mothers, Society: Community, Society: War, Values/Ideas: Religion & SpiritualityTags Historical Fiction

Lives of the Saints (1990) by Nino Ricci is the first in a trilogy of novels about an Italian immigrant to Canada, Vittorio Innocente, and his family. The author, Nino Ricci, is the son of Italian immigrants who grew up in Leamington, Ontario, home to a large community of Italian immigrants. The novel is a coming-of-age story told in first-person narration that details Vittorio’s life growing up in an impoverished small town in Italy, and... Read Lives of the Saints Summary


Publication year 2003Genre Novel/Book in Verse, FictionThemes Relationships: Family, Identity: Race, Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Grief, Emotions/Behavior: Hope, Emotions/Behavior: Memory, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Natural World: Animals, Relationships: Friendship, Relationships: Mothers, Relationships: Siblings, Self Discovery, Society: Class, Society: Community, Society: Education, Values/Ideas: Beauty, Values/Ideas: Literature, Values/Ideas: Order & Chaos, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality, Values/Ideas: Trust & DoubtTags Realistic Fiction, African American Literature

Locomotion, Jacqueline Woodson’s 2003 novel in verse, follows the perspective of Lonnie Collins Motion, nicknamed Locomotion. After his parents die in a fire and his sister is adopted, Lonnie grieves and navigates life, first in a group home and then with Miss Edna, his foster mother. Through poetry, he slowly finds joy in life again, highlighting the themes of The Search for Identity and Belonging, The Healing Power of Writing, and The Enduring Support of... Read Locomotion Summary


Publication year 2004Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Daughters & Sons, Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags Mystery / Crime Fiction

Looking for JJ is a young adult thriller by Anne Cassidy about a British teen struggling to piece together her life despite a dark secret: As a child, she murdered another child. First published in 2004, the novel was short-listed for the Carnegie Medal and the Whitbread Book Award and won the Booktrust Teenage Prize. Narrated from the offender’s perspective, the novel explores themes of guilt, justice, and forgiveness. Seventeen-year-old Alice Tully lives with her foster... Read Looking for JJ Summary


Publication year 2002Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Shame & Pride, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of AgeTags Realistic Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Humor, Bullying, Parenting, Relationships, American Literature

Loser is a young adult novel published in 2002 by American author and Newbury Medal winner Jerry Spinelli. It tells the story of Donald Zinkoff, an eccentric goofball of a kid who stumbles enthusiastically through his elementary school years, largely without friends, before becoming an accidental hero in middle school. Written entirely in the present tense, Loser garnering several awards and nominations.Plot SummaryAt first, the other kids don’t notice little Donald Zinkoff, except to see... Read Loser Summary


Publication year 2017Genre Novel, FictionThemes Values/Ideas: Loyalty & Betrayal, Life/Time: Aging, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Values/Ideas: Power & Greed, Values/Ideas: Truth & LiesTags Fantasy, Horror / Thriller / Suspense Fiction

Written by American author Christina Henry, Lost Boy: The True Story of Captain Hook is a 2017 dark fantasy retelling of J. M. Barrie’s original play, Peter Pan. Henry has written several dark retellings of fairy tales to date, including Alice, which is based on Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll; The Girl in Red, which adapts the story of Little Red Riding Hood; and The Mermaid, which based on Hans Christian Andersen’s The... Read Lost Boy: The True Story of Captain Hook Summary


Publication year 2001Genre Poem, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Nostalgia, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Values/Ideas: Religion & Spirituality

Publication year 2018Genre Novel, FictionThemes Relationships: Siblings, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Identity: DisabilityTags Realistic Fiction, Relationships

Publication year 2021Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Loneliness, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Self DiscoveryTags Science-Fiction / Dystopian Fiction, Humor, Realistic Fiction

Publication year 1899Genre Novel, FictionThemes Life/Time: Childhood & YouthTags American Literature, Naturalism

Published in 1899 and written by author Frank Norris, McTeague: A Story of San Francisco is a novel in the tradition of Naturalism, a literary movement that explores how people are at the mercy of forces, internal and external, that dictate their behavior and destiny. In McTeague, despite their attempts to fight these forces, even fundamentally good people are brought to their destruction by their nature, their environment, and their social class. As their tenuous... Read McTeague Summary


Publication year 1891Genre Novel, FictionThemes Emotions/Behavior: courage, Emotions/Behavior: Determination / Perseverance, Emotions/Behavior: Revenge, Identity: Masculinity, Life/Time: Childhood & Youth, Life/Time: Coming of Age, Relationships: Friendship, Self Discovery, Society: Politics & Government, Values/Ideas: Good & Evil, Values/Ideas: Justice & InjusticeTags Classic Fiction, Historical Fiction, Coming of Age / Bildungsroman, Action / Adventure, Medieval Literature / Middle Ages, Politics / Government

Men of Iron is an 1891 young adult novel written and illustrated by Howard Pyle. Pyle was born in Delaware in 1853, and after years of training—beginning with a childhood passion for art—he taught illustration at Drexel University before establishing his own institute, the Howard Pyle School of Illustration Art. His style of art, which he himself was instrumental in developing, was named the Brandywine School after the mid-Atlantic region from which the artists in... Read Men of Iron Summary