Youth Reads

These are the books our Youth Ambassadors are currently reading.
What are YOU reading? Would you like to find out more about Atlantic Canadian Books?

Breakwater Books

Sebastian Synard doesn’t want any more trouble than he already has. But when he leads a group of tourists along the cliffs of St. John’s harbour, one of them ends up dead. Not only is there a murderer in his tour group, but the cop assigned to the case is sleeping with Sebastian’s ex-wife. It seems like things can’t get any worse, but as he’s enlisted to help flush out the perpetrator, the trail leads deeper than expected, and Sebastian finds himself on the edge.

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 Send More Tourists… the Last Ones Were Delicious

by Tracey Waddleton

Breakwater Books

With birth, death, contemplation, and close calls, Send More Tourists… the Last Ones Were Delicious explores how we respond to the weight of social expectations. From the hidden pressures of wall paint and tarot card predictions, to the burden of phone numbers and the dismembering of saints, Waddleton takes us on a surrealist road trip through the missteps of her vivid characters with honesty and compassion. These are stories of survival. Unafraid, dreamy, and downright weird, these stories cross boundaries of geography, gender, and generation with an eye to the transient nature of human life.


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Breakwater Books

Do you love life? In this hilarious frolic through the hills of Italy, our heroine discovers the past is never really gone: it runs beside us our entire lives, just waiting to bite us in the arse. love, life is a made-up true fable about coming out, going back in, getting fat, Italian food, and stalking the Piazzo Bernardini. It’s a haunting love story, transcending decades, countries, and heartbreak. A Newfoundlander in Italy offers the humour, optimism, and romantic yearning the world needs now.


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Case Against Owen Williams

by Allan Donaldson    

Nimbus Publishing

Allan Donaldson’s first novel, Maclean, was shortlisted for the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize. Donaldson’s new novel is a literary mystery set in the fictional town of Wakefield, New Brunswick, against the backdrop of the Second World War. Following a night at The Silver Dollar dance hall, a teenage girl turns up dead in a gravel pit. The last person reported to have seen her is Owen Williams, an introverted soldier stationed with the local garrison of “Zombies”—conscripted men unwilling to serve overseas. When Lieutenant Bernard Dorkin, a young lawyer from Saint John, volunteers to defend Williams, whom he believes is innocent, he finds himself up against a theatrical local favourite leading the prosecution and a public mostly hell-bent on a foregone conclusion. The Case Against Owen Williams explores the potential for wrongful conviction and the gaps in the justice system that allow it to flourish.

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War at Sea

by Ken Smith

Nimbus Publishing

The Battle of the Atlantic, the longest single engagement of the Second World War, resulted in the coming-of-age of the Royal Canadian Navy. By 1945, the Canadian Navy had transformed from a small force of 3,500 personnel and 13 vessels into the third-largest naval power in the world. As German U-boats threatened to weaken the Allied war effort, the Canadian Navy was put to work protecting convoys across the Atlantic and hunting for submarines off the coast of Atlantic Canada.

War at Sea uses first-hand accounts from the veterans who survived, as well as a detailed catalogue of the technology, weapons, and ships, to describe the history of this pivotal conflict. Author Ken Smith emphasizes the contribution of Atlantic Canadians, who worked in areas vital to the war effort while under constant threat from U-boats, sabotage, and spies.


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Queen of the Crows

by Harmony Wagner 

Nimbus Publishing

Elsa’s mom has disappeared again, but eleven-year-old Elsa is doing her best to fool the world into thinking her life is normal. As food, money and luck begin to run out, Elsa fears she won’t be able to keep her desperate, lonely secret any longer.

Then one day a crow talks to Elsa and a world of wonder opens up to her. The queen of the crows has also gone missing and the rest of the crows struggle to know what to do next.

Could the secret, magical world of the crows be the key to Elsa’s mental health?

Based on the award-winning short film screened by Telefilm Canada at the Cannes Film Festival, Queen of the Crows explores a family story of mental illness, love and imagination and triumph.


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Mercy Mercy 

by Marlene Stanton    

The Acorn Press

Smart, sarcastic TV reporter Mercy Pepper struggles with feelings of guilt after her cameraman dies while on assignment with her. A news tape that he had hidden in his personal effects contains a secretly recorded conversation, and Mercy picks up the scent of corruption. She soon finds herself mired in the muck of provincial politics—the power brokers and the opportunists and those willing to go to extreme measures for a piece of the pie.

With a keen observer’s eye and sharp, sparkling wit, Stanton, a former news reporter, delivers a compelling crime/mystery story with a satisfying dash of romance.

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Retour à la butte à Pétard

by Diane Carmel Léger

Bouton d'or Acadie

Une jeune fille adoptée du Dakota du Nord part à la recherche de ses ancêtres. À cause de ses rêves obsédants, elle croit que sa mère biologique est une Cadienne de la Louisiane. Grâce à l’aide de ses parents adoptifs et de Tante, sa gardienne cadienne de son enfance, Sara découvre l’histoire et la culture des descendants des Acadiens déportés de 1755. Sa quête la mènera de la Louisiane jusque dans le sud-est du Nouveau-Brunswick. Y trouvera-t-elle aussi ses véritables origines et une explication à ses visions ? Roman d’aventures où des phénomènes paranormaux se mêlent à l’histoire des descendants de déportés acadiens de 1755.

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The Last Time I Saw Her 

by Alexandra Harrington

Nimbus Publishing

Friends and family are pitted against each other after a tragic accident leaves behind shattered relationships and shocking secrets. A riveting novel by a new voice in teen fiction.

It’s been almost a year since Charlotte Romer set foot in her hometown of River John, Nova Scotia. She’s been living at a boarding school hours away, safe from the trauma and broken relationships she left behind. All she has left in the small town is her older brother, Sean, who is struggling to keep the lights on in their run-down family home. Charlotte hasn’t spoken to her best friend, Sophie, since the night she fled. It’s not exactly a celebratory homecoming.

On her first night home, Charlotte shows up unannounced to Sophie’s eighteenth birthday party. The trickle-down effects of that decision haunt Charlotte for weeks. But when Charlotte reconnects with Sophie’s ex-boyfriend, Max, the two of them begin to slowly unravel what happened the night of the accident the summer before—the night that changed everything. Somebody knows something, and that somebody really doesn’t want Charlotte and Max to figure it out.

With a fast-paced, high-stakes plot, Alexandra Harrington’s debut YA novel will leave readers breathless until the final, shocking conclusion.


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Blaze Island

by Catherine Bush

Goose Lane Editions

For those who loved Barbara Kingsolver's Flight Behavior comes a new climate-themed, Shakespeare-inspired novel from bestselling author Catherine Bush.

The time is now or an alternate near now, the world close to our own. A Category Five hurricane sweeps up the eastern seaboard of North America, leaving devastation in its wake, its outer wings brushing over tiny Blaze Island. During this wild night, a stranger washes up on the doorstep of the isolated house where Milan Wells lives with his daughter Miranda.
A climate scientist whose career was destroyed by climate change deniers, Wells has fled to this remote island with his daughter years before, desperate to protect her from the world's worsening weather.
Seemingly safe in her father's realm, Miranda walks the island's rocky shores, helping her father with his daily weather records. But the stranger's arrival breaks open Miranda's world, stirs up memories of events of long ago and compels her to wonder what her father is up to with his mysterious weather experiments. In the aftermath of the storm, she finds herself in a world altered so quickly that she hardly knows what has happened or what the unpredictable future will bring.


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