Tangled Planet by Kate BlairWhat it is: a suspenseful science fiction murder mystery set on a far-off planet.
What happens: Seventeen-year-old Ursa and the other human colonists of the starship Venture have only just arrived on Beta Earth when one of their own is found dead. No one believes Ursa's claims of sighting a sharp-toothed monster in the woods, even as the killer claims more victims and the colony is thrown into jeopardy.
For fans of: Beth Revis' Across the Universe trilogy.
Girl Made of Stars by Ashley Herring BlakeWhat it's about: Besides being her twin brother, Owen is also Mara's most trusted confidante. Yet when her friend Hannah accuses Owen of rape, Mara believes her, even though doing so fractures her family and forces Mara to confront her own long-buried pain.
Who it's for: readers who won't shy away from an intense, honest look at trauma and recovery.
Try this next: Jenny Downham's You Against Me, for a different perspective on siblings whose relationship is shattered by sexual assault.
Picture Us in the Light by Kelly Loy GilbertStarring: high school senior and second-generation immigrant Danny Cheng, whose excitement about his art-school scholarship dims as his parents begin acting strange and his tight-knit friend group implodes.
Why you might like it: If you enjoy character-driven reads, you'll be drawn to snarky, sympathetic Danny and his attempts to deal with grief, guilt, identity, family secrets, and love (romantic and otherwise).
Isle of Blood and Stone by Makiia LucierWhat it's about: Eighteen years ago, the crown princes and royal navigator of St. John del Mar were kidnapped and murdered...or so it seemed. Now, newly discovered maps indicate that all three might still be alive, and it's up to Elias (the navigator's son), Ulises (the princes' brother) and Mercedes (a royal cousin) to find them.
Why you might like it: With sea-serpents, sweeping intrigue, and simmering romance, what's not to like?
Look for: the sequel -- this is the 1st book in a duology.
Puddin' by Julie MurphyFeaturing: optimistic Millie Michalchuk, who's decided to ditch fat camp for a journalism program; and popular Callie Reyes, who's planning a revenge prank with her dance team frenemies.
What happens: When the aftermath of the prank brings the two Texas teens together, they discover that they inspire each other in unexpected ways.
Series alert: You don't need to have read Dumplin' to appreciate this feisty follow-up, but fans will be excited to revisit familiar characters.
Compulsion by Heidi AyarbeWhat it's about: The magic keeps Jake safe, and the numbers make the magic work. So Jake follows meticulous routines based around counting and prime numbers, hoping that he can keep the magic going long enough to win the school soccer tournament, earn a scholarship, and repair his messed-up family.
Why you might like it: This "gripping, claustrophobic read" (Booklist) offers an insider's view of life with OCD.
For fans of: John Green's Turtles All the Way Down.
Breakaway: Beyond the Goal by Alex MorganWhat it is: a memoir by soccer star Alex Morgan, who's played in both the World Cup and the Olympics, where her team won the gold in 2012.
What's inside: In a casual, candid style, Morgan describes life as a professional athlete, and dishes out advice on coping with injuries, balancing school and sports, and building strong relationships.
Who it's for: Though Breakaway will appeal most to soccer fans, Morgan's dedication and down-to-earth attitude will inspire all kinds of readers.
Kick by Walter Dean Myers and Ross WorkmanWhat it is: Celebrated author Walter Dean Myers joined forces with one of his fans, Ross Workman, to write this story of a soccer-playing New Jersey kid who gets into serious trouble.
What happens: Arrested for crashing his friend Christy's dad's car, 13-year-old Kevin Johnson has to decide whether he can trust Sergeant Brown, a police officer who seems like he genuinely wants to help.
Why you might like it: Besides a captivating mystery and exciting soccer action, Kick also offers memorable, well-developed characters.
Outcasts United: The Story of a Refugee Soccer Team That Changed a Town by Warren St. JohnWhat it's about: how the boys in Clarkston, Georgia's refugee resettlement center learned a common language besides English: soccer. Led by their determined coach, the boys formed teams known as the Fugees, and despite their lack of equipment or support, their unusual team spirit began to attract attention.
Who it's for: Pairing play-by-play action with the all-too-real struggles of adjusting to life in a new country, Outcasts United is a winner for sports fans and nonfiction readers alike.
Now Is the Time for Running by Michael WilliamsWhat it's about: how 14-year-old Deo goes from fleeing his ravaged village in Zimababwe to playing in the Street Soccer World Cup in South Africa.
Read it for: a heart-wrenching story of brutality and survival, lightened by on-the-field excitement and the loyal, loving bond between Deo and his brother, Innocent.
Did you know? South African author Michael Williams based this novel on interviews with young Zimbabwean refugees.
Contact your librarian for more great books for age 14 and up!
Downers Grove Public Library
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Downers Grove, Illinois 60515