Wednesday, August 9, 2017


Children who read just four books over the summer fare better on reading-comprehension tests in the fall than their peers who read one or no books. We are challenging everyone in Arlington to choose four books to read over these summer months! We'll be sharing the 4 titles from some of our staff and community members this summer to inspire you! Share your selections on social media. Use the hashtag #WhatsYourFour?

In this post, our Adult Services Librarian, Jenny, will be sharing her four for this summer! Jenny is also our resident book recommendation guru! I highly recommend asking her for suggestions on Friday mornings via our "Put Your Face in a Book" recommendations on the Robbins Library Facebook Page! 

Jenny, Adult Services Librarian

Her top 4 must read YA books this summer are "The Runaways" by Brian K. Vaughn, "The Pearl Thief" by Elizabeth Wein, Dodger by Terry Pratchett, and "Holding Up The Universe" by Jennifer Niven.

The Runaways by Brian K. Vaughan: I don't usually read a lot of comic books or graphic novels, but once I found out that Rainbow Rowell (Eleanor & Park, Fangirl, etc.) was going to pick up the Runaways series where it left off, I knew I'd want to read it, and I should start at the beginning. The Runaways is completely addictive - it's about a bunch of kids who find out their parents are supervillains. They run away together, discover their own powers, and work to defeat their evil parents.

The Pearl Thief by Elizabeth Wein: I loved, loved, loved Code Name Verity, and this book features Julie, a character from that book, before WWII begins. She returns home from boarding school for a last summer in Scotland on her family estate, which they've had to sell to be turned into a school. It's a story of mystery, adventure, thievery, friendship, and a dash of romance.

Dodger by Terry Pratchett: Set in early Victorian London, this is a marvelous adventure story with a great sense of humor. The main character, Dodger, is an orphan who makes a living as a "tosher" - he searches through the city's sewer system for money, jewelry, and other treasures. One night he sees a young woman being attacked, and he rescues her; then he declares himself her protector and is determined to find out who is after her and why. (Also, he falls in love with her.) Real historical figures, like Charles Dickens, also make an appearance. The audiobook version of this is fantastic.

Holding Up the Universe by Jennifer Niven: Two teens in an Indiana high school collide (literally and figuratively) and, instead of becoming enemies, form a friendship and help each other. Libby, formerly "America's Fattest Teen," ate her grief after her mom died, and is returning to public school after a few years of homeschooling (and a lot of therapy). Jack, a popular kid, has a secret that keeps getting him into trouble: he has prosopagnosia, which means he can't recognize faces, even those of his family and close friends. This reminded me a little of Say What You Will by Cammie McGovern, another great teen book about two very different individuals coming together.

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