Choice Reading, Reading

Micro Book Reviews for Book Talks

These are micro book reviews as they were originally posted on twitter (character limit: 280). I use these micro book reviews to share great books with class during book talks.

I have also had my students write their own micro book reviews. It is a great critical thinking and rewriting activity as it requires tons of editing to fit their opinions into the tiny character requirements.

Originally posted on my twitter feeds @tlmarkides, @msmarkidesclass, and my instagram feed literacymasterydiscovery

Check out this resource if you would like some guidance in writing micro book reviews with your students.

Check out this resource if you would like some guidance in having your students present their own book talks to celebrate and share their reading.

Please be aware that many of the books below include mature content and may not be appropriate for your child or students.  Please make that determination in consultation with the reader.


(updated 18/06/2021)


Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
Benjamin Alire Sáenz
⭐⭐⭐⭐

Sometimes the only way to understand the universe is to start by understanding yourself.

Aristotle and Dante learn who they are through their growing friendship and love for each other.

Knowledge is power, which can be destructive.

#yalit
#yalit
#yaliterature
#yareads
#youngeadultlit
#choicereading #weneeddiversebooks
#lgbtq
#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks
#bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

Caraval

Once upon a Con Series
Ashley Poston
⭐⭐⭐⭐

What if Cinderella was into cosplay? (Geekerella)

What would happen if a super fan switched places with their heroine? (Princess and the Fangirl)

Who is the mysterious guy she met at comic con and will she ever see him again? (Bookish and the Beast)

Light, quirky, and funny this series is a great read especially for those who love reinvented fairytales, are into the comic con, cosplay, fantasy or sci-fi.

It also does a great job of including LGBTQ+ characters authentically, for example:

The main character in “Bookish and the Beast” has a friend whose pronouns are them and they and “Princess and the Fangirl” includes both a lesbian and gay couple.



#yalit
#yalit
#yaliterature
#yareads
#youngeadultlit
#choicereading #lgbtq+

#weneeddiversebooks 
#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks
#bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Becky Albertalli
⭐⭐⭐⭐

Knowledge is power, which can be destructive.

Someone knows Simon is gay and is blackmailing him. Simon is willing to do anything to keep his secret (and that of his love interest Blue), even if it means  betraying a friend.

#yalit
#yalit
#yaliterature
#yareads
#youngeadultlit
#choicereading #weneeddiversebooks
#lgbtq
#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks
#bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

Caraval

Iron spark

C.M. McGuire
⭐⭐⭐⭐

Her mother has gone missing, her father has been cursed with a supernatural/untreatable schizophrenia and they are now coming after her twin brothers.

Following in her parent’s footsteps, Bryn must battle supernatural creatures to defend her family from the fae, while struggling with being a teenager.

Includes an open and frank discussion between three teens who share their developing understanding of their sexuality (lesbianism and asexuality).

#yalit
#yalit
#yaliterature
#yareads
#youngeadultlit
#choicereading #weneeddiversebooks
#lgbtq #mentalhealthmatters
#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks
#bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

Digging In
Loretta Nyhan
🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

What is one to do when faced with immeasurable grief and a life that is fallen apart?

Middle-aged Paige’s decision to dig up the backyard and grow a vegetable garden seems like a bizarre reaction to her teenage son Trey, the neighbours and her coworkers, but it revives more than just her beaten spirits.

Filled with warmth and wit this novel shows a widow’s hope-filled path to healing.

#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks
#bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

Caraval

This Is My America
Kim Johnson
⭐⭐⭐⭐

Tracey’s father is innocent and on death row.

Her brother is a suspect in a murder.

A gripping double murder mystery and a moving portrayal of the pursuit for truth.

#yalit
#yalit
#yaliterature
#yareads
#youngeadultlit
#choicereading #weneeddiversebooks
#bipoc
#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks
#bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

Heartless

Internment
Samira Ahmed
🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
Poignant
Enthralling
Timely

Muslims in the US have been interned…

“Though you muffle my voice, I speak.
Though you clip my wings and cage me, I fly.
And though you batter my body,
commanding me to kneel before you,
I resist.”
—Ali Amin

#yalit
#yalit
#yaliterature
#yareads
#youngeadultlit
#choicereading #weneeddiversebooks
#bipoc
#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks
#bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

Caraval

Love from A to Z
S.K. Ali
⭐⭐⭐⭐

What do you do as a Muslim teen faced with an anti-Muslim teacher?

You join a movement called “eat them alive, ” and set about documenting his racist rants in an attempt to bring home down.

You also find love along the way.

#yalit
#yalit
#yaliterature
#yareads
#youngeadultlit
#choicereading #weneeddiversebooks
#bipoc
#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks #bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs
#ms

Heartless

Renegades (book 1)
Novel by Marissa Meyer
⭐⭐⭐⭐

In this story of “heros” and “villains,” humans with super powers (prodigies) were harrased and victimized.

The Anarchist rebelled, overthrew the government and turned the world upside down.

In stepped the Renegades, superheros, bringing law and order to to the chaos and targeting the other prodigies.

But who are the good guys and who are the bad guys?

Sometimes it’s hard to tell.

#yalit
#yalit
#yaliterature
#yareads
#youngeadultlit
#choicereading
#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks
#bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

Caraval

Midnight Sun &
Life and Death
Melissa Myers
⭐⭐⭐⭐

If you are reading the Twilight series, these are a must read follow up.

If you loved the twighlight series when it originally came out, then you will love both these books as they repel you back to your youth.

Midnight Sun is the retelling of Twilight from the perspective of Edward Cullen were you hear all of his angsty thoughts.

Life and Death is the retelling of Twighlight through gender reversal.  All the characters are the opposite gender: Bella is Bo. It includes a new ending!

#booktalks
#YAfiction
#teacherslovebooks
#bookrecs

Heartless

The Glass Castle
Emily St. John Mandel
⭐⭐⭐⭐

A story which looks at how one person’s actions can devastate the life of so many others.

With multiple: narratives, intersecting plotlines, & flashbacks, this novel is full of mystery and intrigue until the very last sentence!

#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks
#bookrecs

Caraval

The Sun is Also a Star

Novel by Nicola Yoon

⭐⭐⭐⭐

On the day illegal immigrant Natasha & her family are being deported to Jamaica she meets &, very reluctantly, falls in love with a Korean American Daniel.

The novel follows them throughout her last day in the United States.

The love story is sweet & tragic but not the shining star of this novel.

What made this story unique were the intertwining & interconnected narratives that illuminated the impact of deportation on all involved but also the impact some person can unknowing have on the people they interact with.

The scientific lense through which Natasha views the world is also enhanced by the interesting “history of…” snipits included throughout.

#yalit
#yalit
#yaliterature
#yareads
#youngeadultlit
#choicereading #weneeddiversebooks
#bipoc
#booktalks
#teacherslovebooks #bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs
#mentalillness

Heartless

Caraval (book 1)
Stephanie Garber
⭐⭐⭐⭐

Caraval is supposed be a game, but people have died.

When magic meets reality, the only thing that’s real is the love fueling Scarlett’s desperate search for her missing sister.

#booktalks #YAfiction #teacherslovebooks #bookrecs

Caraval

Heartless
Marissa Meyer
⭐⭐⭐⭐

Ever wonder how the queen from Alice in Wonderland became so heartless.

Learn all about her in this wonderful reimagining of the queen of hearts origin
story.

Catherine was just a girl in love who gave away her heart to achieve revenge.

#booktalks #YAfiction #teacherslovebooks #bookrecs

Heartless

Cinder (Book 1 Luna Chronicles Series)
Marissa Meyer
🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Finding comfort in an old favourite: the Lunar Chronicles series. A futuristic re-imagined fairy tale.

Cinder, a cyborg, has a talent for mechanics & a guardian who resents her.

The New Beijing prince needs her help & things are about to change.


#booktalks #YAfiction #bipoc #weneeddiversebooks #teacherslovebooks #bookrecs

Cinder: Book One of the Lunar Chronicles

Five Feet Apart

Rachael Lippincott

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Interesting how current experiences colour fiction you’r reading
e.g. Five Feet Apart-CF patients are required to: 😷 Wear face mask 😷 Stay six feet apart 😷 Repeatedly disinfect areas & wash hands 😷 B cepacia, antibiotic resistant bacteria: is a contagious death sentence.


#booktalk #bookrecs #booknerd #yalit #booktalks
#teacherslovebooks #englishteacherbookrecs #memeoflifeinislotation

Five Feet Apart

The Past and Other Things That Should Stay Buried

by Shaun Hutchinson

⭐⭐⭐⭐

What would you do if your dead ex BFF sat up & started talking to you?

Death is on vacation & Dino is stuck zombiesitting his decomposing BFF and figuring out why no one is dying.


#weneeddiversebooks #LGBTQIAyareads #yaliterature #teacherslovebooks

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns

(Rise of the Empress series) 

by Julie C. Dao

⭐⭐⭐⭐

East Asian inspired fabel of a young peasant girl who goes to the dark side (eating hearts in a dark ritual) in order to achieve her destiny of becoming the Empress.

#weneeddiversebooks#yalit#booktalks#teacherslovebooks#englishteacherbookrecs

Everything, Everything

by Nicola Yoon

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Would you risk death for ❤️? Madeline might.

She suffers from a rare disease & lives in a sealed house.

She can’t leave & visitors go through a decontamination process just to enter the door.
That is until Olly… 

#yalit#yaliterature#yareads#youngeadultlit#choicereading#weneeddiversebooks#bipoc#booktalks#teacherslovebooks#bookreview#englishteacherbookrecs

Finding Audrey

by Sophie Kinsella

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Something happened to 14 yr old Audrey causing debilitating anxiety. She slowly recovers with the support of her family, therapist & new love interest.
A light hearted but enlightening look at causes/effects of this serious illness.

#yalit#yaliterature#yareads#youngeadultlit#choicereading#booktalks#teacherslovebooks#bookreviews

Thief of Lies

(Library Jumpers series)

by Brenda Drake

⭐⭐⭐⭐

If your Gia these are the things you never knew about yourself until now:

  • 📖you are a sentinel and guard the library gateways
  • 🧙‍♀️you have magical powers
  • 🧚‍♀️You were supposed to have been taken from your parents and exchanged with a changeling
  • 🔮🎱You are dreaded/hoped for “foretold,” whatever that is
  • 💔And like your mother and father, you too are forbidden from being with your new found love

A light but fun read just in time for Valentine’s Day ❤️ 

#yalit #yaliterature #yareads #youngeadultlit #choicereading #booktalks

Among the Hidden

(Shadow Children Series)

by Margaret Haddix

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Overpopulation has caused extreme measures: a two child policy.

12 yr old Luke’s parents already had two sons when he was born. They had two choices, give him up or keep him hidden.

They hid him… 

#booktalks #teacherslovebooks#bookreviews#bookreccomendations#bookish #igreads #bookblogger #booknerd #instabook#englishteacherbookrecs

Dear Rachel Maddow

by Adrienne Kisner

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Brynn Harper, 17, pours her heart out in draft emails to celebrity Rachel Maddow (& us). Here’s a list of adjectives to describe Brynn: *neglected, dumped, depressed & dyslexic *quirky, witty, intelligent & unique *engaged, accepted, celebrated & loved

#yalit #bookrecs #booktalks #bookreviews #teacherslovebooks

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

(Harry Potter series)

by J. K. Rowling

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Harry Potter escapes his abusive muggle family to attend a wizard school where he faces his worst nightmare.

#yalit #yaliterature #yareads #youngeadultlit #choicereading #booktalks

Between the Lines

by Jodi Picoult & Samantha van Leer

⭐⭐⭐⭐

What if the characters in the story live real lives after you close the book?
What if the book forces them to act out the plot while you read the story?
What if one of the characters askes for your help to escape?

#yalit #yaliterature #yareads #youngeadultlit #choicereading #booktalks

The Evil Queen

(The Forest of Good and Evil Series)
by Gena Showalter
⭐⭐⭐⭐

An imaginative and engaging reenvisioning of the Snow White fairytale.

Who is the hero and who is the villain?

Who will end up with Prince Charming?

#yalit #yaliterature #yareads #youngeadultlit #choicereading #booktalks #teacherslovebooks #bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

A Monster Calls

Patrick Ness

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Idea inspired by Siobhan Dowd, written posthumously. An in-depth & heartrenching look at a preteen’s struggle to acknowledge/deal with his mother’s impending death. Uses mythological elements (real/imagined?) to illustrate this struggle.

#yalit #yaliterature #yareads #youngeadultlit #choicereading #booktalks #teacherslovebooks #bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

Autobiography of my Dead Brother

Walter Dean Myers

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Mix mediums of story & art help bring this novel to life. Told from the perspective of Jess. He attempts to write his BFFs bio. He explores the loss of their friendship & realizes that people change as they grow up

#yalit #yaliterature #yareads #youngeadultlit #choicereading #weneeddiversebooks #bipoc #booktalks #teacherslovebooks #bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

The Bite of the Mango

by Mariatu Kamara

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Mariatu journeys from Sierra Leone, loosing her hands in a rebel attack, to Canada as a refugee, where she attends school for the first time. Mariatu’s story is one of hope, determination & forgiveness.

#yalit #yaliterature #yareads #youngeadultlit #choicereading #weneeddiversebooks #bipoc #memoirs #booktalks #teacherslovebooks

Night

by Elie Wiesel

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

A moving portrayal of Ellie’s heart wrenching stay in a Nazi concentration camp, alongside his father, near the end of WWII.

An inside view of what life was like and what it took to survive.

#yalit #yaliterature #yareads #youngeadultlit #choicereading #booktalks #teacherslovebooks #bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

I’m Not Dying with You Tonight

by Gilly Segal and Kimberly Jones

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Two high school students rely only on each other & their wits as they try to find: escape their school after a fight turns deadly, escape the streets full of looters and cops who may not come to their aid.

#yalit #yaliterature #yareads #youngeadultlit #choicereading #weneeddiversebooks #bipoc #booktalks #teacherslovebooks #bookreview #englishteacherbookrecs

Refugee

by Alan Gratz

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

3X: refugees + escapes + losses + freedom

Josef is a Jewish boy in the 1930s fleeing concentration camps in Nazi Germany.

Isabel is a Cuban girl in 1994 fleeing riots and food shortages.

Mahmoud is a Syrian boy in 2015 fleeing civil war.

#yalit #yaliterature #yareads #youngeadultlit #ireadya #choicereading

Everything I Never Told You: A Novel

by Celeste Ng

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Lydia is lonely, the only non white student at her high school (other than her brother) unable to keep up with parental expectations & about to die. See the last moments of her life and the devastating consequences of her death

#booktalks #teacherslovebooks #bookreview #bookreccomendations #memoirs #bookish #igreads #bookblogger #booknerd 

Children of Eden

(Children of Eden series)

by Joey Graceffa

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

A must read recommended through Ss book talk. Dystopian novel filled with cliffhangers & unexpected revelations. A one child policy leaves Rowan, a 2nd child, a living ghost.
She is revealed, escapes & discovers the lies sustaining society.

#books#YAfiction#booktalks

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