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Battle of the Books 2018


The Battle of the Books is back and will begin on Tuesday, July 3rd! This summer, we have 8 great teen books that are battling it out for top spot.

Every week you will get the chance to vote to keep your favourite book in competition! The books with the most votes will move on to the next round. The book with the fewest number of votes that week will be eliminated. The battle will start with 8 books during the first week, then 7 the following week and so on.

You will also have the chance to win a $25 Chapters gift card each week! Keep following the updates on the Teen blog for details.

Don’t forget to check out the French teen titles that are competing on the French side of the battle in this summer's Combat des livres.

All of the details are up on the Battle of the Books page. The winning English book and the winning French book will be announced on Monday, August 20th.

Here are the 8 teen books that are in competition this summer, with reviews by Bella, a member of the Carlingwood TAG.


The Poet X, by Elizabeth Acevedo

This book is written entirely in verse and is about how a fiery and strong willed girl living in Harlem finds her voice. Her family's stifling devotion to religion is holding her back from being the women she wants to grow into and she has nowhere to turn but to the poetry she writes silently each day. This is the story of how a teen smashes her cage into a million pieces using slam poetry and how she learns the real power religion and family can wield when set free. 





Long Way Down, by Jason Reynolds

No crying. No snitching. Revenge. These are the three rules Will repeats to himself as he steps into the elevator and away from the scene of his brother's murder. As the floor number flashes 7 and the doors start to close, Will knows exactly what he will do next. But when an unexpected person from the afterlife boards the elevator as it stops at the 6th floor, and opens again for another deceased person from Will’s past on each of the following floors, his resolves starts to slip slowly into doubt.





Love, Hate and other filters, by Samira Ahmed

This book doesn’t just tackle an incredibly important social issue, it also covers the struggles that many teens face as they grow up and try to stay true to themselves while still living up to their families expectations. Maya Aziz knows what her parents want her to do after high school: go to the local university into pre-law and marry the cute Indian boy she just met who goes to Princeton. Maya, however, has a secret. She’s been accepted into NYU for film studies and is hopelessly in love with her school's football-playing prom king. Then, just when Maya thinks that she’s convinced her family to let her move to New York, a horrible attack in the city and Islamophobic assaults from her peers send her spiralling straight back to square one.




The Marrow Thieves, by Dimaline Cherie

This book is a futuristic dystopian where almost all of humanity has lost its ability to dream after destroying the environment through global warming. All that is, but the Indigenous people of North America. In their bones lies the key to recovering the dreams the rest of the world has lost, and they are being hunted tirelessly for it. At first, all they can do is run and try their best to stay hidden but as the clock starts to run out it is clear that they need to unlock the powers they have beneath their skin to overcome the marrow thieves. Drawing parallels and reflecting the state of our world and how we treat our First Nations people currently, this is a must read. 


The 57 Bus, by Slater Dashka

This non-fiction book actually covers more than one current social issue. The 57 Bus tells the story of an incident taking place between two teens, one an African-American boy named Richard and the other an agender teen named Sasha, on their bus ride home from school in November of 2013. When Sasha dozes off to the familiar rock of the bus, Richard plays a prank that goes horribly wrong. The result sends Richard tumbling headfirst into the, sometimes deeply flawed, justice system and creates a wave of LGBTQ rights awareness and long due discussions of gender identity and pronoun use. A beautifully told story of empathy and the power of forgiveness, you won’t regret adding this book to your hold list!




Moxie, by Jennifer Mathieu

by I’m not sure if you can tell from the cover, but this book radiates girl power. This is the story of how Vivian Carter, a teenage girl growing up in a small town in America finds her own unique voice in the fight for gender equality. The way Vivian decides to stand up to sexism in her high school may not be the loud and in-your-face 90’s riot grrrl approach her own mother took, but it is sneaky, creative, and downright brilliant in its own way. This shot of pure feminism should definitely be added to your shelf.





If I Was Your Girl, by Meredith Russo

Amanda Hardy is a trans teen struggling to find her place in a new town and high school after moving away from the big city. All Amanda wants is to fit in but when she starts falling for a boy named Grant, secrets begin to unravel and threaten to send her world back into the chaos she was trying to escape.





I Am Alfonso Jones, by Tony Medina

This is the only graphic novel in this year's Battle of the Books, but it holds its own. Young Alfonso Jones was out shopping for his first suit when an off-duty police officer mistook the clothes hanger he was holding for a gun and shot him dead. Following Alfonso’s journey to the spirit world as he watches the family and friends he left behind fight tirelessly for justice in the Black Lives Matter movement, this book is a quick read but an emotional one. I highly recommend this book even if you don’t usually like graphic novels.


I am excited for this contest!!!!!

I love this book and I can't wait for it to win this awesome contest!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11111111

The bookmarks have updated wonderfully from past years! \(^u^ )/

I love me some battle of the books and I am truly looking forward!

So many great book choices.