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?

Nimbus Publishing

In her deeply-affecting final novel, acclaimed children’s writer and storyteller Jan Andrews gives us Edie Murphy – an indomitable and engaging heroine on the cusp of womanhood. The novel moves from Edie’s remote Newfoundland outport to St. John’s and finally to New York City’s Lower East Side. Against the background of the history-making “Uprising” of 1909, when 20,000 garment workers went on strike for better working conditions, and the devastating Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire (1911), Edie begins to find her own voice, hone her already-strong will, and learn about the true nature of home. A celebration of the strength of women and the power of community.

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Ellie

Amazing Atlantic Canadian Kids

by Lindsay Ruck  

Nimbus Publishing

We’ve all heard of amazing grown-ups from Atlantic Canada, like Joseph Howe, Joshua Slocum, or Maud Lewis—but it’s about time we learned about our region’s amazing kids! This fascinating, full-colour, illustrated book features over 50 amazing and diverse young people from Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, PEI, and Newfoundland and Labrador, sharing their incredible stories and accomplishments, past and present.

Among these amazing kids are boys and girls who saved lives, set sports records (Marjorie Turner Bailey), invented something (Rachel Brouwer), survived in the wilderness (Robert Kent), overcame injustice, illness, or disability (Danielle Dorris), and enacted many other inspiring deeds of courage and perseverance. Encompassing both historical and contemporary kids, Boileau shows young readers that greatness has no age limit.

Featuring a foreword by The Hon. Myra Freeman, informative sidebars, an index, and 30 original illustrations from artist James Bentley.

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Damini

And My Name Is

by Margie Carmichael    

Acorn Press

In this, Margie Carmichael’s first collection of short stories, ordinary women have extraordinary skills, gifts and strengths; they are women who live next door or in the distance, shadowed by fear or absence of recognition. Age, race, and culture connect in the timeless fabric of the quilt, with craft, patience, and faith connecting the women through the threads of their diversity.

Anna tells of life after residential school; Irini reflects on her life in war-torn Afghanistan. In Tansie, two adults survive childhood abandonment. Freelance cosmetician to the dead Flora Hill offers insight into the lighter side of love, marriage, and death.

Featuring illustrations by Dale McNevin, the book is a collaboration that began with an original painting and companion poem first published in the Maritime Centre of Excellence for Women’s Health 2000 Calendar.

selected by

Molly

Secrets of Sable Island

by Marcia Pierce Harding    

Nimbus Publishing

After a vicious storm aboard ship, fourteen-year-old Caleb is tossed into the Atlantic Ocean. Frightened and alone, he finds himself nudged awake. He’s been recovered by one of Sable Island’s legendary wild stallions and is given shelter by a mysterious stranger, Norse, who is secretly living on the island. As Caleb recovers and gets to know his strange rescuer, learning the art of scrimshaw, storytelling, and survival, he wonders how he’ll manage to remain on the island he’s come to love. When he befriends the ghostly girl who rides bareback over the dunes, he knows he must do whatever he can to save her, and himself.

A heartwarming and captivating adventure set on the infamous isolated sandbar that has captivated so many, and featuring original illustrations, Secrets of Sable Island will leave young readers spellbound.

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Shaheer

Dirty Birds

by Morgan Murray

Breakwater Books

In late 2007, as the world’s economy crumbles, the remarkably unremarkable Milton Ontario—not to be confused with Milton, Ontario—leaves his parent’s basement in Saskatchewan and sets forth to find fame, fortune, and love in the electric sexuality of Montreal, to bask in endless Millennial adolescence, to escape the infinite flatness of Saskatchewan, and to find his messiah: Leonard Cohen.

Hilariously ironic and irreverent, Dirty Birds is a quest novel for the twenty-first century—a coming-of-age, rom-com, crime-farce thriller—where a hero’s greatest foe is his own crippling mediocrity, and getting out of bed before noon.

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Oliver

Dead Letter

by Finley Martin   

Acorn Press

It is 2001 and the police constable’s girlfriend is murdered in a fit of jealous rage. When the constable realizes what he has done, he manages an elaborate cover-up. Only one person knows the truth.

Flash forward to 2012. Anne Brown is still running her late uncle, Bill Darby’s, detective agency after spending four or five years as his assistant. One day, the postman delivers an eleven year-old letter. The letter is addressed to her uncle from a woman named Carolyn Jollimore. She says she has evidence about a murder and begs for help from Darby. But Bill Darby is dead. And when Anne looks up the letter’s author, she finds that Jollimore too is now dead. Troubled with the evidence at hand, Anne must decide if she should investigate this eleven-year old murder.

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Savannah

The Last Wild Boy

by Hugh MacDonald  

Acorn Press

Picking up right where Edge of Time left off, Time of Treason continues the story of Riley and Alec, otherwise normal teens whose special genetic traits grant them powers they are only now learning to control – powers that also make them targets for the extraterrestrial Tyons.

Riley and Alec have traveled back in time to the start of their adventures, courtesy of Alec’s creepy time shifting abilities. But instead of fixing things, it’s made everything much worse. The Tyons have tracked their time shift and are hot on their heels, and Rhozan is back, more dangerous than ever. After a brazen attack, Alec finds himself out of the frying pan and definitely into the fire.

Can Riley save him? Or is Alec just a pawn of time?

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Siobhan

Like Rum-Drunk Angels

by Tyler Enfield

Goose Lane Editions

Francis Blackstone is a fourteen-year-old gunslinger with a heart of gold.

He’s fallen for the mayor’s daughter and resolves to make his mark, and his fortune, to win her favour. And what better way than to rob a Manhattan Company bank? Enter Bob Temple, the volatile outlaw who takes Francis under his wing— though not without a degree of suspicion— and so begins the adventures of the Blackstone Temple Gang as they crisscross the west in search of treasure, redemption, and the possibility of requited love.

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JIayu

Black Water Rising

by Robert Rayner    

Nimbus Publishing

When heavy November rains threaten to flood the small town of Black River, New Brunswick, the community calls on the hydroelectric company to open the gates of its dam and drop the water level. But local management has been overruled by their parent company and ordered to keep it closed. It’s got some people hinting it’s time they took things into their own hands.

Seventeen-year-old Stanton Frame is caught in between: his father is manager at the dam, but his girlfriend, Jessica, has joined an environmental group that’s taken an interest in the matter. With just hours until the town floods, things come to a violent clash between police and protesters. The next morning the dam has been sabotaged, Jessica is missing, and Stanton has more questions than answers.

Suspenseful and authentic, with a fine ear for the nuances of local politics and teenage sensibilities, celebrated YA author Robert Rayner’s new novel combines activism, love, and mystery.

selected by

Moriya

Crow 

by Amy Spurway

Goose Lane Editions

When Stacey Fortune is diagnosed with three highly unpredictable — and inoperable — brain tumours, she abandons the crumbling glamour of her life in Toronto for her mother Effie's scruffy trailer in rural Cape Breton. Back home, she's known as Crow, and everybody suspects that her family is cursed.

With her future all but sealed, Crow decides to go down in a blaze of unforgettable glory by writing a memoir that will raise eyebrows and drop jaws. She'll dig up "the dirt" on her family tree, including the supposed curse, and uncover the truth about her mysterious father, who disappeared a month before she was born.
But first, Crow must contend with an eclectic assortment of characters, including her gossipy Aunt Peggy, hedonistic party-pal Char, homebound best friend Allie, and high-school flame Willy. She'll also have to figure out how to live with her mother and how to muddle through the unsettling visual disturbances that are becoming more and more vivid each day.

selected by

Kamara

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