Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Oprah's Book Club Launches

On this day in 1996, Oprah launched her book club. When Oprah picked a book, it was an instant bestseller and thousands, if not millions, of people would read it.

If we had that kind of power, what YA books would we recommend that everyone read?


Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta. After the days of the unspeakable, Seranonna curses Lumatere, and its exiles are left to find each other and try to find a way home, never knowing if there's a home to find their way back to. Finnikin roams the countryside, checking on the refugees, trying to find them a new home, but then he hears the name of the heir to the throne and has hope that maybe they can go back home, so he finds a novice that will guide them. The second in the trilogy is Froi of the Exiles.

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson. Right before the start of high school, there was a party. At the party something happened, so Melinda called the cops. Because she called the cops, no one will talk to her. Because no one will talk, no one will listen, so Melinda stops talking, too.

Two Moons in August by Martha Brooks. One of my most favorite books of all time. After her mother died last summer, Sidonie's family fragmented--her sister went off to Uni and her father threw himself into his work. This summer, she tries to bring them back together, while also letting herself open up to the new boy across the street.


No and Me by Delphine de Vigan, translated from the French by George Miller. When Lou befriends the homeless No as part of a class project, everything changes. No moves in and helps heal Lou's family, but it'll take more than Lou to help heal No, if that's even possible.

The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson. Elisa wears the godstone that marks her as chosen by God. When she's married off to a neighboring king, she is thrust into a world of politics and intrigue that she doesn't understand. When she is kidnapped by rebels and sees the truth of the situation on her borders, she must face her destiny. Follow it with The Crown of Embers.

American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang. Told in three parts, this graphic novel's stories eventually merge into a single tale about accepting who you are. Jin Wong just wants to be an all-American kid instead of an immigrant one. Danny (a truly all-American kid) is horribly embarrassed by the antics of his cousin Chin-Kee. And Monkey wants to be the most revered of all the gods.


Nation by Terry Prachett. Mau's entire island village is destroyed by tsunami. He's the only one left until he comes across Daphne, a white girl shipwrecked on his island by the same deadly wave. Together they find a way to survive and move on from the tragedy, while still examining the greater questions of life.

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein. After crash landing in Nazi-control France, a British spy is arrested and interrogated by the Gestapo. She is weak, and tells them what she knows, hoping it will buy her time, her life, or at least a quick execution instead of being shipped to Ravensbrück. But in her story, she tells a heartbreaking story of her best friend Maddie, the pilot she left in the burning plane.

In Darkness by Nick Lake. Shorty is trapped by rubble after the 2010 Haitian earthquake. With no food or water, and rescue being slow in coming, he's unsure if he will survive. In weakened delirium, he sees Haitian independance leader Touissant l’Ouverture, and tries to make sense of the life that's led him to this point.

If you had Oprah's power, which books would you tell people to read?

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