Wicked Girls by Stephanie Hemphill: a verse novel about the girls who accused the villagers in Salem of being witches. Verse novels are weird! They're made up of individual poems, from half a page to 3 pages long. The poems together tell a story. In the case of this book the poems are in the voices of three different girls. For me, I liked it but it wasn't the type of thing you can just read a few pages of then put down, like you might with regular poetry. I started it 3-4 times that way and had to keep going back and rereading it. I finally read a big chunk and realized that was how to do it. Reading large sections made following the action much easier. I think I liked it but i probably need to read a few more. a 5.
We also had to write a paper defending a challenged book. I read The Chocolate War first and ended up writing my paper about it but I also read two others for some different options.
The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier: a classic of YA lit that i never read in school. Boy at a Catholic school refuses to participate in the school's chocolate sale. Pretty amazing book to be published in the 1970's, very "fight the man" even when "the man" is your peers. great meditation on bullying and peer pressure. a 6. FYI, the cover on Amazon is lame.
Annie on My Mind by Nancy Garden: really sweet, non-graphic "young girls fall in love with each other" novel. I was super surprised this was published in 1982; it really feels very modern. about the only things missing are cell phones! I liked this one a lot. a 7.
The Silver Kiss by Annette Curtis Klause: want a quickie "vampire falls in love with a human girl" that was actually well-written 15 years prior to Twilight? try this one. Klause should so sue Stephanie Meyers....a 5.