High School


5M4B disclosure

subway love

Jonas is struggling through a summer in NYC. It’s kind of hot, he’s kind of bored, and he’s ticked off at his dad who left his mom for another woman.

Laura is struggling a bit too. Her older brother is a total hippie, rebelling against authority, using mind-altering drugs. Her mother has shacked up with a guy closer to her brother’s age than her own. Her parents are divorced too, so she spends time commuting between her mom’s home in Woodstock and her Dad’s apartment in NYC.

Jonas and Laura meet on the subway one day, but they are truly star-crossed lovers. They have to hurdle time and space and schedules and brothers and friends to be together, not to mention the pleas of a subway “writer” (a tag artist), Max, who needs Jonas’ help to document his big project.

Subway Love had a slightly slow start. I felt lost at the beginning, because the scene seemed out of context, but once I got into Jonas and Laura’s stories, I was hooked. All the 70′s references were fun to see, and it caused me to ponder how very much things have changed in 40 years.


I have been thinking a lot about how my gut draws me to a book or how I override my gut in regards to a bad cover or title. So I might try sharing some of my thoughts in reviews.  Author Nora Raleigh Baskin is somewhat of a legend, so of course I was drawn to it for that reason. After reading the book, the cover, with Jonas and Laura and even the tagged subway perfectly represents this novel.


At first this seems like your run-of-the-mill YA book (and there is nothing derisive in that comment at all), but there is some moderate use of heavy swearing. There are also quite a few mentions of recreational drug use. For that reason, I’d recommend this only for older high schoolers (or you know, grownups like me).


Kate Rudd is a reader I enjoy. It was through her that I first enjoyed The Fault in Our Stars. Her reading here is just as good. Her voice is expressive and pleasing to the ear. Todd Haberkorn read the chapters that are in Jonas’ POV, and he did a great job as well.



This post may contain affiliate links. When you use them, you support this site. Thank you!
See our Disclosure Policy for details.

Deep Blue

I frequently enjoy YA books, as they may be meant for teenagers but still appeal to the kid in me, too. Deep Blue by Jennifer Donnelly felt more like a book that needs a teenage girl to truly appreciate it. This first book in the Waterfire series is set under the ocean and features the world of mermaids. Serafina is the princess of Miromara, and she is getting ready to celebrate her Dokimi, which is a series of tests that prove that she is ready to take on the mantle of ruler one day once her mother dies – as this is a matrilineal society and the men don’t rule. It is also when her betrothal to a prince from another kingdom will become official. In
Read the full article →


The Revealed

Read the full article →


Me and You

Lorenzo is a 14-year-old boy. He’s a bit of a misfit, and though his parents support him, they wish he would make more friends. He’s been under the care of a therapist trying to help him reach out (I think he’s somewhere mildly on the spectrum). He himself vacillates between being happy on his own and wanting to fit in with the others at school. This desire to fit in causes him to fantasize about tagging along on the ski trip he hears the popular kids talking about. He voices the fantasy to his mom, which results in a spiraling lie that ends up with him spending the ski week hiding out alone in the basement of his building. He’s an only child, sort of.
Read the full article →


Happy to Be Alive, Because

Avery has a summer to remember. It doesn’t start off that way, far from it. During her senior year in high school, her mom got cancer. When she passed away, Avery was lost. Her mother is all she has, and all the plans she made in her last year of high school — like staying at the local community college after she graduates — were all made so she could help care for her mother. After receiving yet another casserole from a well-meaning friends, she feels like she has to get away. When she finds some tickets and a travel itinerary for a trip her mother hoped to take with her to her hometown on the beach. Avery decides to take the trip alone in
Read the full article →


Love and Other Foreign Words, a 5-Star Read

Josie is a precocious 16-year-old girl. She loves languages, and she’s become an expert at all of the languages she hears each day: her best friend Stu speak (even Stu Chewing), those of her volleyball teammates at school, the college kids she sees each day in her Early College Program, sisters, fiancees, parents and more. The word most on her mind is love. Her older sister Kate says she’s in love, but Josie knows Geoffrey Stephen Brill is not right for her. She can’t be in love with him. Kate, he’s the single most uninteresting person in the world. You’re not really going to marry him, are you? Is this a delayed rebellion? Is this the boyfriend you should have had when you were sixteen
Read the full article →


5 YA Books to Read to Get Ready for the Movies, 2014 {Friday’s Five}

The Fault in Our Stars – June 6 There’s been a lot of talk in the #kidlit world about the fact that John Green’s book isn’t the only popular, well-written, well-reviewed YA book out there, but to listen to mainstream press, you might think it is. No, it’s not. It’s good, and he’s good, and I think the movie will be good, so it definitely belongs on this list. The movie comes out first, so I’m including it at the top of the list. I think that people will want to pick up the book after they see it, but I’m urging you to go ahead and take a couple of days and read it before you see it. Or not. I don’t really care
Read the full article →


Why Adults,Teens, and John Green are excited about The Fault in Stars movie #TFIOS

I’m excited about The Fault in Our Stars movie, are you? I am glad that I reviewed the book way back in 2012 before it was all the rage, though John Green was a popular YA author before this blockbuster of a book. My 15 1/2 year old daughter Amanda got to be a part of a phone interview with John Green. Hearing his excitement about the movie is contagious. He was honest and humorous: I would tell you if it sucked. Well, actually probably they probably wouldn’t let me do this call if it sucked. But, no, it really was, it was so special. I was just ridiculously lucky. This was one of the pictures that was released that got Amanda really excited, and
Read the full article →


Hidden Like Anne Frank: 14 True Stories of Survival

Though Anne Frank’s personal story is likely the best known tale of hiding from the Nazis during World War II, hers was one of many. Too many to even imagine. Marcel Prins and Peter Henk Steenhuis have worked to gather and share more accounts from Jewish people who survived this terrible time hiding in the Netherlands, which was occupied by the Germans during the war. Hidden Like Anne Frank: 14 True Stories of Survival is a challenging read, filled with emotion and horror, but with reminders of human kindness and bravery. In the foreword, it is stated that about 28,000 Jews went into hiding in the Netherlands, with about 16,000 ultimately surviving, while the other roughly 12,000 were caught or betrayed. The stories included in this collection tell of
Read the full article →


We Were Liars

The note from the publisher at the beginning of the egalley of e. lockhart’s We Were Liars warns readers to enjoy the book but not to find out anything about this book. I honestly try to approach most books that way. I avoid reviews and I don’t even re-read the jacket copy when I finally get around to reading a book that has been sitting on my shelf. I promise this review won’t contain any nods to plot elements you don’t need to know, and I’d suggest you avoid spoilers so that you can enjoy this book as it’s intended as well. I wanted to love this book. It seemed intriguing. It was well-written and clever. I might be teetering on YA overload, which happens
Read the full article →


Itch Rocks: The Further Adventures Of An Element Hunter

Itchingham Lofte does not fit in at his new Cornish school. He had promised himself he was going to make more of an effort this school year, but in Itch Rocks by Simon Mayo, he is now the most protected kid in the world, and his bodyguards scare away everyone, not giving him much of a chance. Add to the fact that he’s still an element hunter, and he remains as much of an outcast as he did in Itch, aside from his (female) cousin Jack and sister Chloe. Itch Rocks picks up after Itch has been released from the hospital after suffering severe radiation poisoning in the first book trying to protect the new radioactive element he accidentally found and keep it from the bad guys
Read the full article →



If you happen to be in my general age bracket, you may find yourself comparing moments in your life with memorable scenes from television shows like “Friends.” I know, odd way to start a review, but stick with me for a minute. Remember when Joey read Little Women? Well, I couldn’t help but reference that (17 year old!!) scene because as I read Chris Wooding’s young adult novel Silver, I had to stop myself from putting the book in the freezer multiple times. Seriously, this book had my heart racing, and I stopped many, many times during my reading, sometimes not even making it to the end of a chapter! While this is intended for a young adult (12 and up) audience, my reaction is
Read the full article →