Best of 2012: all things YA

Today our staff delves into the every popular young adult genre. Since all our staff are adults, well in years at least, clearly there is no shame in checking out these titles if you happen to be a “mature” adult.

Young Adult Fiction

Croak by Gina Damico

A delinquent 16-year-old girl is sent to live with her uncle for the summer, only to learn that he is a Grim Reaper who wants to teach her the family business. I’m becoming fascinated with anything grim reaper-ish, ghostly, psychical, or dealing with the afterlife. This hits all the high notes for me, and is a nice, smooth read. This book will definitely appeal to fans of the TV show Dead Like Me. – Carol

This is Not a Drill by Rebecca (Beck) McDowell

When an angry dad bursts into the classroom where Jake and Emery are tutors, things quickly degenerate. In the absence of the teacher, it is up to the teens to save the younger children from an armed, and increasingly disturbed, ex-soldier with PTSD. The story is told in alternating chapters by Jake and Emery, which gives us both points of view, and a hint of romance. This is a very believable and topical thriller. –Theresa

Never Eighteen by Megan Bostic

Austin doesn’t have much time to complete his “bucket list.” Terminally ill, he has a list of people to see and events to set into motion before it’s too late. It’s a “sneaky sad story” that starts out sarcastic and full of dark humor. –Emily

The Selection by Kiera Cass

Thirty-five girls from different social castes are randomly selected to compete for the chance to wed their next ruler, Prince Maxon. For most girls, this would be a dream come true. But for one girl, being selected is a nightmare. Unlike many first books of series, this one has some closure at the end. –Emily

Chomp by Carl Hiaasen

Return to form for an author known for his literary, humorous, ecological books — in this one the worlds of a rugged animal wrangler and a faux survivalist TV star collide. Terrific character-driven fiction; it’s hard to be this funny and smart at the same time. –Alan

Young Adult Nonfiction

The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook by Emily Ansara Baines

The title is the hook, and while it does pay tribute to the world of The Hunger Games by including recipes like “Grilled Tree Rat with Peanut Butter Dipping Sauce”, most of the recipes are simple standards such as French bread and red velvet cake. The recipes are within the abilities of a beginning teen cook, and most use ordinary kitchen ingredients. However, the author is serious about foraging and developing interest in cooking with wild edibles. –Theresa

Seventeen Ultimate Guide to Beauty by Ann Shoket and the editors of Seventeen magazine

This title is divided into sections covering makeup, hair, skin, nails, and finding your own look. Within each section are tips for a variety of “looks” and photographs of trending celebrities as examples. It shows in detail how to use the various makeup products and the photographs represent a wide variety of ethnicities and body types. The style suggestions are realistic for teens: not too time consuming, and not requiring too many beauty products. –Theresa

For a full list of all the 2012 staff picks, click here.

Be sure to visit A Reading Life for more reviews and news of all things happening at the Everett Public Library

Talk to us

More in Life

Josh Haazard Stands inside his workspace, the HaazLab, where he creates a variety of cosplay props and other creative gadgets, on Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022, at his home in Monroe, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
This contraption crafter turns junk into sci-fi weaponry

Joshamee “The Chief” Haazard is a costume prop maker in Monroe. He transforms trash into treasure.

For your kids’ sake, stress less about their grades this school year

Don’t make a big deal over grades. Instead, encourage out-of-classroom activities and remember, learning is supposed to be fun.

At the prehistoric fortress of Dun Aengus, the dramatic west cliffs of Ireland meet the turbulent sea as Europe comes to an abrupt end. (Rick Steves' Europe)
Enjoy the simple life on Ireland’s starkly beautiful Aran Islands

Three limestone islands make up the Aran Islands: Inishmore, Inishmaan, and Inisheer.

American Queen changes COVID protocols; can I get a refund?

fter American Queen changes its COVID protocols, Patricia Voorhees Furlong and her husband want to skip their river cruise. Is that allowed? Or, will they lose out on $7,858?

Erika Weinert, an Everett-based mother, editor and now author, sits at her home workspace and holds her first published book, “Cursing with Style” on Saturday, Aug. 6, 2022, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
What the @#$%! Everett mom publishes a dictionary of curse words

Erika M. Weinert, 42, a copy editor who does business as The Werd Nerd, wrote “Cursing with Style.”

The 2022 Lexus GX has a 301-horsepower V8 engine, six-speed automatic transmission, and full time all-wheel drive. (Lexus)
Updated 2022 Lexus GX 460 expands list of standard features

Navigation and a 10.3-inch multimedia system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are included.

Bruce Johnson has an exhibit on the history of clowns at the Lynnwood Library in Lynnwood, Washington on August 11, 2022. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Clown historian takes the funny business very seriously

Bruce Johnson, a.k.a “Charlie the Juggling Clown,” wants to pass his craft down to future generations.

Ella Larson, left, and Simon Fuentes sort through blueberries at Hazel Blue Acres on Friday, Aug. 12, 2022 in Arlington, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Fruits, flowers and bees aplenty in Arlington farm fete

First-ever event highlights local growers’ bounty and contributions to local community

A bald eagle flys over Howarth Park back to it’s perch on Friday, April 22, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Learn how to photograph birds in three-part workshop

Participants will learn to make appealing, sharp bird photos even if they are new to photography.

The Snohomish County PUD recently installed two electric vehicle fast chargers adjacent to public parking stalls on the north side of the Electric Building.
PUD installs fast chargers for electric vehicle drivers

Funding for the t62.5-kilowatt chargers came in part from fines paid by Volkswagen over its 2015 diesel engine scandal.

Airbnb host cancels, and now he has to pay $1,300 more

When Curtis Rahman’s Airbnb host cancels his reservation a day before his arrival, he tries to find a substitute apartment. But the new property is smaller and costs more. Is a $200 credit enough to make up for the trouble?

Antique tools can be interesting collectibles. This gadget, a mechanical rope twister, has a patent date of 1901.
Most people today would not recognize this rope twister

Is it a kitchen gadget — perhaps a fruit or vegetable peeler? Some kind of grinder or chopper? In fact, it’s a mechanical rope twister.