“The Girl from the Sea” by Molly Ostertag
If you’re looking for one last taste of summer book this sweet graphic novel, is it. This book has a little of everything, the sea, summertime, friendship, first love, magic, finding your own beliefs and standing for them. The mom in the book plays a small role but she made me laugh and warmed my heart.
— Fawn Contreras, youth services clerk, Valley Community Library
“What Big Teeth” by Rose Szabo
“What Big Teeth” was one of my favorite books I’ve read in 2021 so far! It was also the strangest book I have ever read, and it was absolutely amazing. The author, Rose Szabo, created a wonderfully, gothic and terrifying world where the monsters that exist look just like you and me. In the story, Eleanor Zarrin who was estranged from her wild family for years finally retunes home after an incident at school. At first Eleanor doesn’t remember much about her family, but then so many horrifying memories start coming back to her. Her monstrous family is weary of her because they think she’s dangerous and not like them. Eleanor doesn’t know WHAT she is, but she does know she wants to keep her family safe and together, no matter what the cost. This supernatural mystery will keep you hooked until the very end!
— Kristen Wallo, adult programming librarian, Valley Community Library
“We Begin at the End” by Chris Whitaker
Duchess Day Radley is an outlaw! She is also 13 and the caregiver to her five-year-old brother and her destructive mother, Star. A lot happens in Cape Haven, California and Walk, he police chief, tries to manage it all. The characters are well-developed and complex. Star, Walk, and Vincent King were high school friends but a murderous accident sent Vincent to prison. His release, thirty years later, sets off a series of events that lead to a mystery not easily solved. Engrossing, surprising, and beautifully written, this is a story about grief, guilt and family. I could not put down this riveting and heartbreaking book.
— Terry Golecki, board vice president, Valley Community Library