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Youth Books for April 23, 2020

In addition to our downloadable eBook and audiobook selections on Washington Anytime Library (, please check out our other learning resources you can find on our website ( under Kids & Teens, Learning and Fun:

TumbleBooks: TumbleBooks ( reads aloud and animates many of your child's favorite books! An excellent program for beginning readers.

Starfall: Give your child a head-start in phonics with this fun and engaging online program ( Useful for children in pre-K to 2nd grade.

National Geographic Kids: NatGeo Kids’ website ( is a treasure trove of games, videos, photos, crafts, and other fun activities for kids of all ages.

And More!!!

Please check out this week’s eBook/Audiobook selections on Washington Anytime Library:


Teen eBook Fiction

"Monday’s Not Coming,” by Tiffany D. Jackson

Washington, D.C., eighth-graders Claudia Coleman and her best (and only) friend, Monday Charles, were inseparable, often mistaken for twins—until the day Monday disappeared.

Brown-skinned with kinky hair, the girls had each other’s backs, and Claudia relied on Monday in ways no one else knew. But when Monday doesn’t show up for the first day of school with no warning or explanation, Claudia becomes worried. After a week goes by, Claudia begins a search for her Monday without much help from the adults around her. Claudia refuses to give up on Monday like she thinks everyone else has: How can a young girl just disappear and have no one look for her? The plot unfolds in nonchronological order, a technique that risks having the story feel clumsy at times. Despite a resolution that reads as somewhat anticlimactic and a narrator who is sometimes as naïve as she is skeptical, the draw of this novel, which was inspired by actual events, lies in its interwoven themes of the effects of gentrification, especially on black residents whose connections, culture, and community become afterthoughts in the face of capitalism; mental illness in the black community; and biases around the value of missing children, black girls in particular. Secrets and how silence often causes more harm than we can imagine are also addressed.

A tragic and heartbreaking tale of love, loss, grief, growth, and perseverance. Ages 13-17

— Kirkus Reviews

"Picture Us in the Light," by Kelly Loy Gilbert

Family, art, love, duty, and longing collide in this painfully beautiful paean to the universal human need for connection.

Cupertino, California, high school senior Danny Cheng has a tight circle of friends, adoring parents, and a full scholarship to his dream school, the Rhode Island School of Design. But lurking just beneath the surface are secrets and tensions that threaten to tear apart everything he holds dear. Closeted Danny has kept hidden his longtime attraction to his best friend, Harry Wong, who is in a serious relationship with Danny’s close friend Regina Chan. Some of his parents’ oddities also turn out to be more than just eccentricity; they are hiding something dark from their past. Danny knows he had an older sister who died in China, but little beyond that. He stumbles across a mysterious file of papers, but his parents refuse to explain. Meanwhile, some in Danny’s circle of school friends are struggling with demons of their own. Gilbert paints a vivid portrait of a largely Asian-American community, diverse in terms of socio-economic status, ethnicity, and religious faith. While the topics dealt with may be heavy, the book is suffused with the warmth of the characters’ love for one another. Imperfect in their human frailty and noble in their desire to do the best they can, they are universally recognizable and sympathetic.

Exquisite, heartbreaking, unforgettable—and, ultimately, uplifting.

Ages 14 and up

— Kirkus Reviews

"Everything, Everything," by Nicola Yoon

Madeline Whittier, a biracial 18-year-old, has severe combined immunodeficiency, a rare condition that renders her allergic to nearly everything and requires her to live inside a carefully sealed environment. Madeline’s contact is limited to her physician mother and her full-time nurse, until handsome Olly moves in next door. Madeline falls for him from her window and begins disobeying the rules that keep her from the outside world. Despite the serious dangers posed by Madeline’s medical condition and Olly’s violently alcoholic father, Yoon’s debut reads breezily. Many chapters consist of single, short paragraphs, as well as emails, chat exchanges, and Madeline’s pithy book reviews (of Lord of the Flies, “Spoiler alert: Boys are savages”). Yoon’s husband provides diagrams, cartoons, and other illustrations that reflect Madeleine’s claustrophobia, whimsical longings, excitement over Olly, and sense of humor. The main conflict is resolved in a few brief pages and reflects an overall tendency for things to happen a bit too easily. Even so, this is an easy romance to get caught up in. Ages 12 & up

— Publishers Weekly

"A Castle in the Clouds," by Kerstin Gier; translated by Romy Fursland

Sophie Sparks is interning at a grand European hotel. Not only does she have her hands full dealing with hard-to-please guests and mischievous children, but she soon discovers that there are secrets in the hotel. Among stolen jewels, kidnapping, and murder, Sophie realizes that many people there are not as they seem. Right away Sophie meets Ben, son of one of the hotel owners. But then there's Tristan, who just might be a hotel thief, but is astonishingly attractive and entertaining to boot. With plenty of red herrings laying around, readers will be kept glued to the page as they try to figure out who is telling the truth and who is not. As the New Year's Eve ball comes closer, the mysteries become more dangerous, and so does the weather, with a movie-worthy storm that makes all the hotel guests even more anxious than usual. Sophie might lose her heart, her job, or even her life. This is a translation of a previous edition in German and the dialogue can be stiff. Language arts teachers will welcome this as an example of a mystery with lots of twists. Ages 12-18

— School Library Journal