It’s time for another round-up of Pickett’s Picks, Spring 2019 Edition! This time I’ve compiled a dozen intriguing debut novels, brand new books from favorite authors, must-read crossover releases, and at least one delectable cover (can you guess which one?). Here are just a few of the books that I’m looking forward to reading and sharing with students at Ridley High School during the upcoming semester. What are YOUR picks?? Leave a comment and let me know!
Internment by Samira Ahmed
A sophomore effort by an author who is stepping up her already-strong game! Internment depicts a dystopian near-future United Sates where Muslim-Americans are forced into internment camps, and seventeen-year-old Layla Amin must lead a revolution against complicit silence.
Serious Moonlight by Jenn Bennett
Eighteen-year-old, mystery-loving Birdie’s new job at a historic Seattle hotel leads her and her co-worker, Daniel, to a real mystery about a reclusive writer who resides there. I love a fresh, contemporary romance with a unique setting, and this one sounds perfect!
Somewhere Only We Know by Maurene Goo
Sparks fly between a K pop starlet and a tabloid reporter in this heartwarming rom-com! Maurene Goo is just as talented at writing the comedy as the romance in each of her “rom-com” novels, and I can’t wait to read her latest!
You’d Be Mine by Erin Hahn
This good, ol’-fashioned love story asks: can the right song and the perfect summer on the road make two broken hearts whole? (My prediction.)
The Current by Tim Johnston
The author of Descent (one of my all-time faves) is back with another suspenseful crossover novel! When two young women leave their college campus in the dead of winter for a 700-mile drive home to Minnesota, they find themselves fighting for their lives in the icy waters of the Black Root River. One girl’s survival and the other’s death stun the citizens of their small town, thawing memories of another young woman who lost her life in the same river ten years earlier, and whose killer may yet live among them. I have no doubt that readers will be swept up in this Current!
The Invited by Jennifer McMahon
A chilling ghost story with a twist: the story of a husband and wife who don’t simply move into a haunted house, they start building one from scratch, without knowing it, until it’s too late … Yes, please, to all of the above.
We Set the Dark on Fire by Tehlor Kay Mejia
In this daring and romantic fantasy debut perfect for fans of The Handmaid’s Tale, society wife-in-training Dani has a great awakening after being recruited by rebel spies and falling for her biggest rival. You had me at “perfect for fans of The Handmaid’s Tale“!
Opposite of Always by Justin A. Reynolds
When Jack and Kate meet at a party, bonding until sunrise over their mutual love of Froot Loops and their favorite flicks, Jack knows he’s falling for her. But then Kate dies. And their story should end there. But Kate’s death sends Jack back to the beginning, the moment they first meet, and Kate’s there again: healthy, happy, and charming. If he has a chance to prevent Kate’s death, he’ll take it. However, Jack will learn that his actions are not without consequences. When one choice turns deadly for someone else close to him, he has to figure out what he’s willing to do to save the people he loves.
On the Come Up by Angie Thomas
The incomparable Angie Thomas is back with her second novel! On the Come Up is the story of Bri, a 16-year-old whose rap goes viral for the wrong reasons, leading to trouble for her family and an eviction notice. The Hate U Give was the novel of 2017, and early word is that On the Come Up is as good if not better!
Small Town Hearts by Lillie Vale
Fresh out of high school, Babe Vogel should be thrilled to have the whole summer at her fingertips. She loves living in her lighthouse home in the sleepy Maine beach town of Oar’s Rest and being a barista at the Busy Bean, but she’s worried about how her life will change when her two best friends go to college in the fall. And when a reckless kiss causes all three of them to break up, she may lose them a lot sooner. I love a novel that portrays a transformational season in a character’s life … plus coffee and pastries!!
The Dreamers by Karen Thompson Walker
This new novel by the author of The Age of Miracles will appeal to both the horror geek and the literary nerd. It’s about a college town transformed by a strange illness that locks victims in a perpetual sleep and triggers life-altering dreams. The town descends into panic and chaos, trying to stay awake but also trying to understand: What are they dreaming about?
Rayne & Delilah’s Midnite Matinee by Jeff Zentner
Best friends Delia and Josie host a campy creature feature show called Midnite Matinee on the local cable station. But with the end of senior year quickly approaching, the girls face tough decisions about their own futures and the future of their show. As the tug-of-war between growing up and growing apart tests the bonds of their friendship, the girls start to realize that an uncertain future can be both monstrous…and momentous. Jeff Zentner excels at depicting true-to-life friendships, complete with humor and heartache, and I’ve already booked a ticket for this Midnite Matinee!