How to Set a Fire and Why by Jesse Ball

Lucia has been kicked out of school, again, this time for stabbing a boy in the neck with a pencil. Her father is dead; her mother is in a mental institute; and she’s living in a garage-turned-bedroom with her aunt. Making her way through the world with only a book, a Zippo lighter, and a pocket full of stolen licorice, Lucia spends her days riding the bus to visit her mother in The Home, avoiding the landlord who hates her, and following the only rule that makes any sense: Don’t Do Things You Aren’t Proud Of.

Recommended by Matt

 

 

 

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Reves, and it is only open at night. But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway–a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors.

Recommended by Madison

 

 

 

The Collected Poems of Lucille Clifton, edited by Kevin Young and Michael Glaser

The Collected Poems of Lucille Clifton 1965-2010 combines all eleven of Lucilleclifton‘s published collections with more than sixty previously unpublished poems. The unpublished works feature early poems from 1965-1969, a collection-in-progress titles Book of Days (2008), and a poignant selection of final poems.

Recommended by Jené

 

 

 

 

All About Love by Susan Taylor

Articles from the “In the Spirit” column of Essence magazine offer advice and guidance on how to find peace, connect with God, and discover love for oneself, neighbors, and family.

Recommended by Jené

 

 

 

 

 

The Girl Who Wrote Loneliness by Kyung-Sook Shin

Homesick and alone, a teen-aged girl has just arrived in Seoul to work in a factory. Her family, still in the countryside, is too impoverished to keep sending her to school, so she works long, sun-less days on a stereo-assembly line, struggling through night school every evening in order to achieve her dream of becoming a writer.

Recommended by Sak

 

 

 

 

 

Eon by Alison Goodman

Sixteen-year-old Eon has a dream, and a mission. For years, he’s been studying sword-work and magic, toward one end. He and his master hope that he will be chosen as a Dragoneye — an apprentice to one of the twelve energy dragons of good fortune. But Eon has a dangerous secret. He is actually Eona, a sixteen-year-old girl who has been masquerading as a twelve-year-old boy.

Recommended by Kelsey

 

 

 

 

 

The End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe

Mary Anne Schwalbe is waiting for her chemotherapy treatments when Will casually asks her what she’s reading. The conversation they have grows into tradition, soon they are reading the same books so they can have something to talk about in the hospital waiting room. The ones they choose range from classic to popular, from fantastic to spiritual, and we hear their passion for reading and their love for each other in their intimate and searching discussions.

Recommended by Claudia

 

 

 

 

 

Hidden Figures by Margot Shetterly

Before John Glenn orbited the earth or Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of dedicated female mathematicians known as “human computers” used pencils, slide rules and adding machines to calculate the numbers that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space. Among these problem-solvers were a group of exceptionally talented African American women, some of the brightest minds of their generation.

Recommended by Michelle