Recently Added [10]

Did you know that David Lubar wrote a sequel to his 2005 novel, Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie? I didn’t until this year’s book fair at my school. So I put it on the stack of books that I’m going to pick up from there.

What it’s about (from Amazon): A hilarious follow-up to the perennial favorite Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie.

Scott Hudson has somehow managed to survive Freshman year. But with a new baby brother in the house and a whole host of adventures awaiting him at school, Sophomore year promises to be anything but boring.

An honest and funny follow-up to the popular Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie, award-winning author David Lubar pens a tale that perfectly captures the ridiculous, tumultuous, and sometimes heartbreaking truths about high school.

From the Hardcover edition.

Why I added it: When I was doing my master’s, forever ago, I took a class on young adult literature. Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie was one of the books I remember enjoying from that class. I’d forgotten about it. I’m interested to reread it, and see how things shape up sophomore year.

The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh

What it’s about (from Amazon): A sumptuous and epically told love story inspired by A Thousand and One Nights

Every dawn brings horror to a different family in a land ruled by a killer. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, takes a new bride each night only to have her executed at sunrise. So it is a suspicious surprise when sixteen-year-old Shahrzad volunteers to marry Khalid. But she does so with a clever plan to stay alive and exact revenge on the Caliph for the murder of her best friend and countless other girls. Shazi’s wit and will, indeed, get her through to the dawn that no others have seen, but with a catch . . . she’s falling in love with the very boy who killed her dearest friend.

She discovers that the murderous boy-king is not all that he seems and neither are the deaths of so many girls. Shazi is determined to uncover the reason for the murders and to break the cycle once and for all.

From the Hardcover edition.

Why I added it: I actually can’t remember where I saw this title, but it was on my Goodreads TBR. When I read the synopsis again, because I’m always a fan of a good retelling, I kept it on my list.

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

What it’s about (from Amazon): Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hell for all the slaves, but especially bad for Cora; an outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is coming into womanhood—where even greater pain awaits. When Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape. Matters do not go as planned—Cora kills a young white boy who tries to capture her. Though they manage to find a station and head north, they are being hunted.

In Whitehead’s ingenious conception, the Underground Railroad is no mere metaphor—engineers and conductors operate a secret network of tracks and tunnels beneath the Southern soil. Cora and Caesar’s first stop is South Carolina, in a city that initially seems like a haven. But the city’s placid surface masks an insidious scheme designed for its black denizens. And even worse: Ridgeway, the relentless slave catcher, is close on their heels. Forced to flee again, Cora embarks on a harrowing flight, state by state, seeking true freedom.

Like the protagonist of Gulliver’s Travels, Cora encounters different worlds at each stage of her journey—hers is an odyssey through time as well as space. As Whitehead brilliantly re-creates the unique terrors for black people in the pre–Civil War era, his narrative seamlessly weaves the saga of America from the brutal importation of Africans to the unfulfilled promises of the present day. The Underground Railroad is at once a kinetic adventure tale of one woman’s ferocious will to escape the horrors of bondage and a shattering, powerful meditation on the history we all share.

Why I added it: A reading buddy of mine, Beth, told me she was reading this book, and that it was really good. And from the synopsis, yeah, I’m interested. Look at me, wanting to read historical fiction.

What have you added to your TBR recently? 

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