Young Adult reviews

Promise Me Happy by Robert Newton

Reviewed by Mike Shuttleworth

Melbourne writer Robert Newton is well known to teenage readers. His colourful novel Runner, about a boy caught up in Squizzy Taylor’s 1920s underworld, is a staple of early secondary reading lists. …

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Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

For five years Tyler has trained hard to earn the privilege of hand-picking his own team of cadets at the Aurora Academy. The night before the big draft he can’t sleep and he convinces the lieutenant…

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Shauna’s Great Expectations by Kathleen Loughnan

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Shauna is a Year 12 student on an Indigenous scholarship at Oakholme College, a prestigious Sydney girls’ private school. She’s suffered endless racist taunts from the school’s number one bully, Keli…

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The Boy Who Steals Houses by C.G. Drews

Reviewed by Jackie Tang

Fifteen-year-old Sam and his older brother Avery are struggling to make a better life for themselves on the streets after being abused by every parental figure in their life. Avery, who is autistic, …

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Good Selfie: Tips & Tools for Teens to Nail Life by Turia Pitt & Freda Chiu

Reviewed by Dani Solomon

Turia Pitt is a motivational speaker, athlete and burns survivor, and she has written her latest book in such a completely friendly, casual way that from the very first sentence you feel welcomed and…

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The Honeyman and the Hunter by Neil Grant

Reviewed by Bec Kavanagh

‘How do we find the place where we belong?’ asks Neil Grant in his newest YA novel, as he follows Rudra Solace from a beachside fishing village on the Australian coast to a sunken village in India. R…

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What I Like About Me by Jenna Guillaume

Reviewed by Lian Hingee

What I Like About Me is the highly anticipated debut from Buzzfeed columnist, journalist, editor, and pop-culture connoisseur Jenna Guillaume. Written in diary form, this witty YA novel takes place o…

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Internment by Samira Ahmed

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Set in a possible near future, this is a terrifying America featuring segregation, abuses of power and racism. One night, seventeen-year-old Layla and her parents are given ten minutes to pack up the…

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We Are Okay by Nina LaCour

Reviewed by Leanne Hall

This moving novel creates the claustrophobia and snowy hush of seventeen-year-old student Marin’s winter break, which she’s chosen to spend in the empty dorms of her upstate New York college. This de…

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On the Come Up by Angie Thomas

Reviewed by Angela Crocombe

Angie Thomas’s debut novel, The Hate U Give, was an absolute knockout – a bestselling, award-winning novel from 2017 that eloquently portrayed racism in America and gave a young adult voice to the Bl…

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