West Bloomfield Township Public Library
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Best Books of 2021 (Teen)

2021 gave us YA books that took readers away to new worlds, created diverse characters and stories, pulled us through twists and turns, and provided food for thought.

Instructions for dancing by Nicola Yoon

"After picking up a book from the library, Evie--who has given up on love--gains the ability to see how other people's romantic relationships will end"--

Last night at the Telegraph Club by Malinda Lo

When Lily realizes she has feelings for a girl in her math class, it threatens Lily's oldest friendships and even her father's citizenship status and eventually, Lily must decide if owning her truth is worth everything she has ever known.

Winterkeep by Kristin Cashore

"Queen Bitterblue of Monsea must head to the nation of Winterkeep after her envoys drown in suspicious circumstances, and somewhere there, Lovisa Cavenda waits and watches while tragedy with devastating political and personal ramification strikes"--

The taking of Jake Livingston by Ryan Douglass

"When a murderous ghost begins to haunt sixteen-year-old Jake Livingston, high school soon becomes a different kind of survival game"--

The girls I've been by Tess Sharpe

When seventeen-year-old Nora O'Malley, the daughter of a con artist, is taken hostage in a bank heist, every secret she is keeping close begins to unravel.

Beasts of prey by Ayana Gray

Sixteen-year-old indentured beastkeeper Koffi and seventeen-year-old warrior candidate Ekon forge an unusual alliance and venture into the Greater Jungle to hunt down a monster that has been menacing their city for a century. Includes author's note.

American betiya by Anuradha D Rajurkar

Eighteen-year-old Rani, a budding photographer, grapples with first love, family boundaries, and the complications of a cross-cultural relationship.

Chlorine sky by Mahogany L Browne

Picked on at home, criticized for talking trash while beating boys at basketball, and always seen as less than her best friend, a girl struggles to like and accept herself.

Home is not a country by Safia Elhillo

A novel in verse follows the experiences of a misfit teen in a discriminatory suburban community who questions her mixed heritage before unexpected family revelations force her to fight for her own identity.

Skin of the sea by Natasha Bowen

Transformed by the goddess Yemoja into a Mami Wati, an African mermaid charged with collecting the souls of those who die at sea, Simi goes against the gods to save a living boy, Kola, from drowning.

The lake by Natasha Preston

Seventeen-year-old best friends Esme and Kayla return to Camp Pine Lake as counselors in training, but the dark secret they have been hiding for nine years is back to haunt them.

Six crimson cranes by Elizabeth Lim

The exiled Princess Shiori must unravel the curse that turned her six brothers into cranes, and she is assisted by her spurned betrothed, a capricious dragon, and a paper bird brought to life by her own magic.

The gilded ones by Namina Forna

Inspired by the culture of West Africa, a feminist fantasy debut traces the experiences of an intuitive girl who is invited to leave her discriminatory village to join the emperor's army of near-immortal women warriors.

A queen of gilded horns by Amanda (Amanda Saulsberry) Joy

After learning the truth of her heritage Eva is on the run with her sister Isa as her captive, but with the Queendom of Myre on the brink of revolution, Eva and Isa must make peace with each other to save their kingdom.

The electric kingdom by David Arnold

After a deadly Fly Flu spreads throughout the world, survivors Nico, her dog, young artist Kit, and the mysterious Deliverer roam the earth, seeking to evade the Flies and find a place where life and love can thrive again.

All these bodies by Kendare Blake

"Summer 1958. A gruesome killer plagues the Midwest, leaving behind a trail of bodies completely drained of blood"--

Realm breaker by Victoria Aveyard

"A strange darkness grows in Allward. Even Corayne an-Amarat can feel it, tucked away in her small town at the edge of the sea. She soon discovers the truth. She is the last of an ancient lineage--and the last hope to save the world from destruction. Butshe won't be alone. Even as darkness falls, she is joined by a band of unlikely companions: a squire, forced to choose between home and honor, an immortal, avenging a broken promise, an assassin, exiled and bloodthirsty, an ancient sorceress, whose riddles hide an eerie foresight, a forger with a secret past, a bounty hunter with a score to settle. Together they stand against a vicious opponent, invincible and determined to burn all kingdoms to ash, and an army unlike anything the realm has ever witnessed"--

You have a match by Emma Lord

"A new love, a secret sister, and a summer she'll never forget. From the beloved author of Tweet Cute comes Emma Lord's You Have a Match, a hilarious and heartfelt novel of romance, sisterhood, and friendship... When Abby signs up for a DNA service, it'smainly to give her friend and secret love interest, Leo, a nudge. After all, she knows who she is already: Avid photographer. Injury-prone tree climber. Best friend to Leo and Connie...although ever since the B.E.I. (Big Embarrassing Incident) with Leo, things have been awkward on that front. But she didn't know she's a younger sister. When the DNA service reveals Abby has a secret sister, shimmery-haired Instagram star Savannah Tully, it's hard to believe they're from the same planet, never mind the sameparents - especially considering Savannah, queen of green smoothies, is only a year and a half older than Abby herself. The logical course of action? Meet up at summer camp (obviously) and figure out why Abby's parents gave Savvy up for adoption. But there are complications: Savvy is a rigid rule-follower and total narc. Leo is the camp's co-chef, putting Abby's growing feelings for him on blast. And her parents have a secret that threatens to unravel everything. But part of life is showing up, leaning in, and learning to fit all your awkward pieces together. Because sometimes, the hardest things can also be the best ones"--

Tokyo ever after by Emiko Jean

After learning that her father is the Crown Prince of Japan, Izumi travels to Tokyo, where she discovers that Japanese imperial life--complete with designer clothes, court intrigue, paparazzi scandals, and a forbidden romance with her handsome but stoic bodyguard--is a tough fit for the outspoken and irreverant eighteen-year-old from northern California.

It all comes back to you by Farah Naz Rishi

"After Kiran Noorani's mom died, Kiran vowed to keep her dad and sister, Amira, close...But when Amira announces that she's dating someone, Kiran's world is turned upside down. Deen Malik is thrilled that his brother, Faisal, has found a great girlfriend...When the families meet, Deen and Kiran find themselves face to face. Again. Three years ago...Kiran and Deen dated in secret. Until Deen ghosted Kiran"--

We can be heroes by Kyrie McCauley

"After a girl is killed by her ex-boyfriend in a school shooting, her two best friends attempt to memorialize her in a town economically dependent on the shooter's family"--

White smoke by Tiffany D Jackson

Believing her new home to actually be alive, especially when her brother almost dies, Marigold and her new blended family won't be safe until she brings the truth to light once and for all.

Firekeeper's daughter by Angeline Boulley

Daunis, who is part Ojibwe, defers attending the University of Michigan to care for her mother and reluctantly becomes involved in the investigation of a series of drug-related deaths.

For all time by Shanna Miles

Through countless lives, seventeen-year-olds Tamar and Fayard have fallen in love, fought to be together, and died but when they discover what it will take to break the cycle, will they be able to make the sacrifice?

The downstairs girl by Stacey (Stacey Heather) Lee

"1890, Atlanta. By day, seventeen-year-old Jo Kuan works as a lady's maid for the cruel Caroline Payne, the daughter of one of the wealthiest men in Atlanta. But by night, Jo moonlights as the pseudonymous author of a newspaper advice column for 'the genteel Southern lady'"--

Cool for the summer by Dahlia Adler

Seventeen-year-old Lara's dream of catching Chase Harding's eye finally comes true even as Jasmine, with whom she just spent a confusing, oddly romantic summer, reenters her life.

The marvelous Mirza girls by Sheba Karim

Accompanying her mother on a gap-year visit to New Delhi after a beloved aunt's death, Noreen rediscovers her cultural heritage alongside a handsome youth before their growing feelings trigger a family scandal.

Yolk by Mary H Choi

Struggling with emotional problems and an eating disorder, Jayne, a Korean American college student living in New York City, is estranged from her accomplished older sister June, until June gets cancer.

One of the good ones by Maika Moulite

"When teen social activist and history buff Kezi Smith is killed under mysterious circumstances after attending a social justice rally, her devastated sister Happi and their family are left reeling in the aftermath. As Kezi becomes another immortalized victim in the fight against police brutality, Happi begins to question the idealized way her sister is remembered"--
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