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Summer Reads to Give You the Chills (Teen Edition)

Posted about 6 years ago by Jennifer Deuell

I don’t know about you, but in the summer I typically like to read some good beach reads.  This year, however, I just haven’t been feeling it. So I decided to get out of my reading “box” and try something a little off-season – a thriller.  Allegedly, by Tiffany D. Jackson, is the story of Mary B. Addison who killed a baby…allegedly.  

At the age of nine, Mary lived with her mother, a black church-going woman who cared for a white baby during the day.  One day, the baby is found dead, covered in bruises. Mary is convicted and sent to juvie for six years. Upon her release, Mary is thrown into a group home where she fears for her life on a daily basis.  Each Sunday, Mary’s mother pays her a visit, dressed in her Sunday’s finest and putting on quite the show. But Momma doesn’t ask Mary how she’s doing or if she needs anything. Instead she talks only of church and her new husband, Mr. Worthington, leaving after exactly 15 minutes.

As you can imagine, Mary doesn’t feel like she has much to live for.  In fact, she hasn’t even bothered to speak since this whole ordeal began.  But all of that changes when she meets Ted while completing community service at a nursing home.  Mary becomes pregnant and the adults in her life are threatening to take her baby away. Suddenly, it is more important than ever that she set the record straight.  Unfortunately, only Momma knows the truth and only Momma can help.

This book hooked me from page one.  It is oh so dark and disturbing. I immediately loved Mary and was enraged and heartbroken by the injustices she faced.  Jackson does a fabulous job of building interesting and realistic characters as well as weaving together complex and twisted relationships.  I flew threw this book because I just had to know who killed the baby. I will tell you, you’ll never see the ending coming, but those books are my favorite kind!  Allegedly is sure to give you chills, even in this summer’s heat.

Want some more suggestions to thrill you this summer?  Check out this list:

One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus

When one of five students in detention is found dead, his high-profile classmates—including a brainy intellectual, a popular beauty, a drug dealer on probation and an all-star athlete—are investigated and revealed to be the subjects of the victim’s latest gossip postings.



The Diviners by Libba Bray

Evie O’Neill is thrilled when she is exiled from small-town Ohio to New York City in 1926, even when a rash of murders thrusts Evie and her uncle, curator of The Museum of American Folklore, Superstition, and the Occult, into the thick of the investigation.



Damage Done by Amanda Panitch

After leaving town and adopting a new identity to escape her twin brother’s terrible crime, Julia thought her old life was behind her, but when she attracts the attention of a dangerous adversary, Julia is forced to confront the dark secrets of the past.




Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls by Lynn Weingarten

They say Delia burned burned herself to death in her stepfather’s shed, but June does not believe it was suicide because she and Delia used to be closer than anything, but one night a year ago, everything changed when they and June’s boyfriend Ryan let their good time get out of hand, and now, a year later, June owes it to Delia to know if her best friend committed suicide or was murdered.



Boot Camp by Todd Strasser

Kidnapped and sent to live in a disciplinary boot camp where he is physically and psychologically tortured on a daily basis, fifteen-year-old Garrett knows that he has been wrongly imprisoned and so feels there is no choice but to attempt a daring escape in order to save the life he has left in him.




This Darkness Mine by Mindy McGinnis

A high-achieving musical student who has always conformed to expectations alongside her oxford-wearing boyfriend suddenly finds herself in a dangerous split-personality love triangle that begins to fracture the life she has meticulously built.




Liar by Justine Larbalestier

Having lied to so many throughout the years, Micah is justifiably known by all as a compulsive liar, but when her boyfriend suddenly dies, truth and fiction are blurred in entirely new ways and Micah must come to terms with the damage she has done through the complex web of deceit she has woven.



The Cabin by Natasha Preston

After a night of partying with friends at a remote cabin, two of the friends are found murdered and Mackenzie begins to suspect that the killer is one of the remaining friends staying at the cabin for the weekend.




Need by Joelle Charbonneau

When the teens at Wisconsin’s Nottawa High School are increasingly drawn into a social networking site that promises to grant their every need, the community spirals into anarchy as the site compels them to commit increasingly malicious pranks. By the best-selling author of the Testing trilogy.



Shelter : a Mickey Bolitar novel by Harlan Coben

Mickey Bolitar is forced to live with his Uncle Myron and switch high schools, where he finds both friends and enemies, but when his girlfriend vanishes, he follows her trail into an underworld that reveals she is not what she seems to be.





Girl Last Seen by Heather Anastasiu

When YouTube sensation Kadence Mulligan disappears, her best friend and former singing partner Lauren comes under suspicion as everyone knows the two had a falling-out and Lauren was one of the last to see Kadence before she went missing.




With Malice by Eileen Cook

Eighteen-year-old Jill Charron wakes up in a hospital, unable to remember the past six weeks, including the accident that killed her best friend, if it was, in fact, an accident.





Girl, Stolen by April Henry

When an impulsive carjacking turns into a kidnapping, Griffin, a high school dropout, finds himself more in sympathy with his wealthy, blind victim, sixteen-year-old Cheyenne, than with his greedy father.

Jennifer Deuell

Jenn Deuell is a Librarian with Richmond Public Library. She is a native of Fredericksburg, VA but has lived in Richmond for long enough that she now considers it home. She loves all things YA and can usually be found curled up at home with a good book (rainy day or not). Her other hobbies include traveling and spending time with family, including her husband, daughter Hannah, and two rescued pit bulls. For YA reading recommendations from Jenn, visit Bookologist.

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