Juvenile & Young Adult / Themes / Social Situations / Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance

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Where Wicked Starts

by Elizabeth Stuckey-French & Patricia Henley Lacewing Books (September 22, 2014)

When stepsisters Nick and Luna suspect that a girl is being held captive, they set out to rescue her.


Refugee Boy

by Benjamin Zephaniah Bloomsbury Publishing (July 04, 2011)

Alem is on holiday with his father for a few days in London. He has never been out of Ethiopia before and is very excited. They have a great few days togther until one morning when Alem wakes up in the bed and...


Petals in the Ashes

by Mary Hooper Bloomsbury Publishing (July 04, 2011)

I could barely explain how much I wanted to go back to London, for I hardly understood myself. I'd hated the stinking city when we'd left, could hardly bear to think on its name, but now the plague had disappeared...


Sabrina Fludde

by Pauline Fisk Bloomsbury Publishing (December 01, 2013)

When Abren becomes conscious of her surroundings, she is struggling to get out of the flooded river Severn with her only possession, a beautifully embroidered cloth, clutched in her arms. What is she doing in...


Gangsta Rap

by Benjamin Zephaniah Bloomsbury Publishing (July 04, 2013)

Ray has given up school. He sees no point in education and despises authority. And then he has no choice about school as he is excluded. But Ray also has troubles at home, which means he has nowhere to stay...


Throwaway Girl

by Kristine Scarrow Dundurn (October 01, 2014)

Since she was thirteen years old, Andy Burton has learned about survival at Haywood House, a group home for girls. Now almost eighteen, Andy must find a new home. Can she build a life for herself and find happiness?...


Watch the Cookie!

by Nancy Côté Sky Pony (October 14, 2014)

Sam and Mousey are best friends, and Mousey is always looking up to Sam and following his lead. They do everything together and share everything, too. So when Sam surprises Mousey with a big chocolate chip cookie,...


Look at Me! Look at Me!

by Rose Williamson & Doreen Marts Sky Pony (October 21, 2014)

Cammy Chameleon has been blending in all her life to help her catch bugs, but lately it seems like no one is paying attention to her. One day, Cammy has an idea. She carefully concentrates and then, suddenly,...


Confessions: The Paris Mysteries

by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro Jimmy Patterson (October 06, 2014)

The City of Lights sets the stage for romance, drama and intrigue in the latest Confessions novel from the world's bestselling mystery writer!

After investigating multiple homicides and her family's decades-old...


Blackbird Fly

by Erin Entrada Kelly & Betsy Peterschmidt Greenwillow Books (March 24, 2015)

Future rock star or friendless misfit? That’s no choice at all. In this acclaimed novel by Newbery Medalist Erin Entrada Kelly, twelve-year-old Apple grapples with being different; with friends and backstabbers;...


Ruby Moo's Deep-Sea Adventure!

by Isabel Atherton & Bethany Straker Sky Pony (September 02, 2014)

Ruby Moo has always been different from the other cows. She isn’t content making yogurt, milk, and cheese on the dairy farm. Ruby wants to be an astronaut, an explorer, and, more than anything, she wants to...


Play Me Backwards

by Adam Selzer Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (August 26, 2014)

A committed slacker enlists the help of his best friend (who may or may not be the devil) to get his act together in this “timelessly true to life” (Booklist) novel filled with humor, awkwardness, and honesty,...


The Truth

by Barbara Becker Holstein Sky Pony (July 01, 2014)

Growing up is tough. Adults don’t always understand you (even though they were once kids), and children today face increasing pressure to be, look, or act a certain way. Written in the voice of a girl on the...


Homeroom Diaries

by James Patterson, Lisa Papademetriou & Keino Jimmy Patterson (July 21, 2014)

In James Patterson's first highly illustrated "diary fiction" story for teens, the mega-bestselling author's most endearing and original teen heroine ever proves that everyone can use a helping hand once in...


Skinny-Dipping at Monster Lake

by Bill Wallace Aladdin (August 12, 2014)

Kent doesn't believe in monsters. But he knows he saw two gleaming yellow eyes beneath the surface of Cedar Lake when he and his buddies were camping at the lake. When he sneaks out alone a few nights later...


Middle School: Save Rafe!

by James Patterson, Chris Tebbetts & Laura Park Jimmy Patterson (June 23, 2014)

James Patterson's hilarious story of perseverance and courage shows everyone's favorite troublemaker, Rafe Khatchadorian, the star of the Middle School series, learning to become a leader at long last.

After...


Since Last Summer

by Joanna Philbin Poppy (June 03, 2014)

Rory McShane should be excited to spend the summer in East Hampton with Connor Rule, her generous, smart, cute boyfriend. After all, Rory's no longer the hired help at the Rule family mansion on the beach, and...


Cobwebs

by Karen Romano Young HarperCollins (March 29, 2011)

A girl walks across the Brooklyn Bridge, a backpack full of knitting slung over her shoulder, a green fish kite in her hand.

A boy balances on the bridge's crisscross webbing, waiting for the girl to pass.

Are...


Since You've Been Gone

by Morgan Matson Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (May 06, 2014)

Emily is about to take some risks and have the most unexpected summer ever. Hellogiggles.com says, “Basically I couldn’t be more in love with this book,” from the bestselling author of Second Chance Summer...


Ballet School Confidential: The Complete 3-Book Bundle: Love You, Hate You / I Forgot to Tell You / You're So Sweet

by Charis Marsh Dundurn (February 12, 2014)

This special three-book bundle follows four ballet prodigies as they face several gruelling semesters at a prestigious dance academy. Will they triumph with their self-esteem, friendships, and will to dance...


The Spotty Dotty Daffodil

by Rose Mannering & Bethany Straker Sky Pony (March 04, 2014)

The little daffodil’s only dream, ever since he was just a bulb, was to grow to be tall, bright, and yellow. But during the winter, the little bulb catches a cold. When springtime finally arrives, the bulb’s...


Maeve on the Red Carpet

by Annie Bryant Aladdin (October 20, 2009)

It's Maeve's chance to be a star -- and to see up close and personal what fame and fortune can do to a person.


Springy Chicken

by Isabel Atherton & Bethany Straker Sky Pony (February 04, 2014)

Martha’s the tallest chicken on the farm—and it’s not because she hit a growth spurt. Unfortunately, instead of normal chicken legs to hold her up, Martha’s legs are two giant yellow springs. After a...


The Complete History of Why I Hate Her

by Jennifer Richard Jacobson Atheneum Books for Young Readers (April 27, 2010)

Nola wants nothing more than a summer on her own—and a job at an upscale Maine coast resort sounds ideal. She’ll have plenty of beach time between waitressing, some freedom from stresses back home, and the...


Sara's Face

by Melvin Burgess Simon Pulse (June 17, 2008)

Fame, beauty, and face transplants

Sara wants to be famous, and when legendary rock star Jonathon Heat offers to take her under his wing and pay for her cosmetic surgery, it's like a dream come true. But beauty...


Frankie Pickle and the Pine Run 3000

by Eric Wight Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (February 09, 2010)

Frankie Pickle returns for another imaginative adventure—drag racing! Well, not quite drag racing, but the Pine Run Derby for scouts. Frankie may not advance to the next rank with the rest of his troop if...


Maggie Bean Stays Afloat

by Tricia Rayburn Aladdin (October 27, 2009)

Here's what's new with Maggie Bean: At the end of her tumultuous year, Maggie Bean is a very happy, healthy girl. After months of Pound Patrollers attendance, diet, and tough swim workouts, the scale now reads...


Standing for Socks

by Elissa Brent Weissman & Jessica Sonkin Atheneum Books for Young Readers (March 24, 2009)

When Fara Ross puts on mismatched socks accidentally one morning, little does she know that it will ignite her political career. What begins as a wardrobe malfunction grows into an expression of freedom in footwear,...


Freaked Out

by Annie Bryant Aladdin (February 10, 2009)

Julia Faber's Hawaiian-themed birthday bash is the talk of Abigail Adams Junior High, but one of the Beacon Street Girls doesn't get an invitation. Should the others be loyal to their slighted friend and miss...


Crush Alert

by Annie Bryant Aladdin (December 16, 2008)

Meet the Beacon Street Girls...They're real, they're fun - they're just like you!

Love is in the air at Abigail Adams Junior High. There's a big dance coming up, and the BSG are having fun thinking up dream...


Burned

by Ellen Hopkins Margaret K. McElderry Books (June 20, 2008)

I do know things really began to spin out of control after my first sex dream.

It all started with a dream. Nothing exceptional, just a typical fantasy about a boy, the kind of dream that most teen girls experience....


Dear Bully of Mine

by Vicki Fraser & Cody McGrath Domnizelles Publications Inc. (October 07, 2013)

Self-worth, confidence and self-esteem are three qualities that can give children the strength to stand up for themselves and others. Join these three characters as they share their honest feelings with their...


The Life and Times of Benny Alvarez

by Peter Johnson HarperCollins (June 24, 2014)

This heartfelt story about school, friendship, and family is perfect for readers who can't get enough of such middle grade favorites as Jerry Spinelli and Gary D. Schmidt. From acclaimed author Peter Johnson,...


Morris . . . the Downside-Up Bat

by H. R. Karpes Sky Pony (October 01, 2013)

Morris likes to hang by his hands instead of by his feet, so everyone thinks he's positively batty. Morris doesn't care: When he hangs from his hands, he can fool owls, catch flying snacks, and—most importantly—watch...


Confessions: The Private School Murders

by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro Jimmy Patterson (October 07, 2013)

In the sequel to the #1 New York Times bestseller Confessions of a Murder Suspect, James Patterson keeps the confessions coming breathlessly as Tandy Angel delves deeper into her own tumultuous history-and proves...


The Little Pea

by Eric Battut Sky Pony (September 01, 2011)

A green pea plant grows in a garden. Inside one pod, a small green pea decides that he is not going to be like all the other peas; he is going to be different. His journey leads him to meet a beautiful peacock,...


All Alone in the Universe

by Lynne Rae Perkins Greenwillow Books (October 26, 2010)

"Before last summer Maureen and I were best friends....At least I think we were. I don't know what happened exactly. As some people who get hit by trucks sometimes say,'I didn't see anything coming.'"

When her...


Kim: Empty Inside: The Diary of an Anonymous Teenager

by Beatrice Sparks HarperCollins (May 18, 2010)

I am so scared.

I feel like I'm silently screaming for help

and no one pays any attention of tries to hear me.

I can't control anything anymore.

It's all out to get me!

When Kim can't handle things, she eats. Then...


The Hidden Boy

by Jon Berkeley Katherine Tegen Books (February 02, 2010)

You are the lucky winner of a Blue Moon Once-in-a-Lifetime Adventure. It’ll be the trip of a lifetime! The tour leaves from the Blue Moon office at 11 p.m. sharp. Groups of seven only. No pets.

When the Flints...


New Kid

by Tim Green HarperCollins (March 04, 2014)

New York Times bestselling author Tim Green delivers another exciting baseball tale that will keep kids on the edge of their seats. Perfect for fans of Mike Lupica.

Tommy Rust is a pro at being the new kid. So...


Smiles to Go

by Jerry Spinelli HarperCollins (October 13, 2009)

What is stargazer, skateboarder, chess champ, pepperoni pizza eater, older brother, sister hater, best friend, first kisser, science geek, control freak Will Tuppence so afraid of in this great big universe?...


Paparazzi Princesses

by Brian Williams, Reginae Carter & Karyn Langhorne Folan Cash Money Content (June 04, 2013)

Money and designer clothes. Fame and red carpet events. Front row concert tickets and expensive parties. That’s the good stuff… but being the daughter of a music mogul or a famous rapper isn’t easy. Welcome...


One Fat Summer

by Robert Lipsyte HarperTeen (April 06, 2010)

The acclaimed book behind the new major motion picture Measure of a Man, starring Donald Sutherland, Judy Greer, Luke Wilson, and Blake Cooper.

A New York Times Outstanding Book and ALA Best of the Best Books...


The Year of Billy Miller

by Kevin Henkes Greenwillow Books (September 17, 2013)

A 2014 Newbery Honor Book

A New York Times Bestseller

Award-winning, nationally bestselling author Kevin Henkes introduces second-grader Billy Miller in this fast-paced and funny story about friendship, sibling...


The Real Boy

by Anne Ursu & Erin McGuire Walden Pond Press (September 24, 2013)

National Book Award Longlist * Bank Street Children's Book Committee Best Book of the Year

"Beautifully written and elegantly structured, this fantasy is as real as it gets."—Franny Billingsley, author of Chime...


Shiloh Season

by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor Atheneum Books for Young Readers (April 02, 2013)

Marty gets to keep Shiloh! He wasn’t able to rescue all the dogs that Judd Travers mistreated, but at least Shiloh is safe . . . right?

Not necessarily, it turns out. With hunting season approaching, Judd...


Saving Shiloh

by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor Atheneum Books for Young Readers (April 02, 2013)

Marty Preston wonders why it is that despite Judd Traver's attempts to redeem himself everyone is still so willing to think the worst of him. Marty's friend David is sure that Judd will be named as the murderer...


It's Not Easy Being Bad

by Cynthia Voigt Atheneum Books for Young Readers (March 12, 2013)

Now that they’re in seventh grade, Mikey and Margalo decide it’s time to be popular—or at least, time to be less unpopular. The trouble is, typical, normal kids are what work in junior high, and if there’s...


Warbird

by Jennifer Maruno Napoleon and Co (September 01, 2010)

In 1647, ten-year-old Etienne yearns for a life of adventure. He meets an orphan destined for Fort Sainte-Marie. Making the most impulsive decision of his life, Etienne replaces the orphan and paddles off with...


Running Scared

by Brenda Chapman Napoleon and Co (October 01, 2004)

Feeling somehow to blame for her father's absence, thirteen-year-old Jennifer Bannon struggles to hang on to her dream that he will return and they can be a family again. However, hope quickly turns to horror...