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Your Questions About How To Discover New Books

David asks…

Some good realistic fiction books for teen girls?

I’ve been looking for some new books, but haven’t found any yet. I’d like something about abuse or running away, volunteering somewhere, or having some kind of handicap or disability. I also like the romance ones though too. Any good books you’d recommend?

New Niche Finder answers:

The rules of survival – Nancy Werlin
A group of kids deal with their vicious, abusive mother.

Project 17 – Laurie Faria-Stolarz
When six high school students sneak into an abandoned mental institution to make a film about their night there, they do not expect the inexplicable and terrifying events that keep occuring within the crumbling, maze-like building, causing them to question themselves and, ultimately, to make different choices about the course of their lives.

Story of a girl – Sara Zarr
After she is caught with her brother’s friend in the back seat of his car, Deanna has to deal with a ruined reputation.

Wait for me – An Na
When Mina falls in love with a young coworker at her parents’ dry cleaners, she struggles between her mother’s dreams for her and true love.

Someone like Summer – M.E. Kerr
When Annabel, daughter of a contractor, and Esteban, a Latino immigrant, begin a relationship, they are at odds with many of the supercilious residents in the resort town of Seaview.

More than friends – Katherine Spencer
After her brother dies, Grace finds herself falling for his best friend Jackson, who has some serious problems of his own.

Enthusiasm – Polly Shulman
Fans of Jane Austen’s novels, Julie and Ashleigh decide to imitate their heroine and try to discover True Love in high school.

Undercover – Beth Kephart
A quiet girl writes love notes for the people in her school, but her feelings for one student may change her.

The Market – J.M. Steele
When Kate finds out that someone is rating all the girls in her class, she is determined to make sure her score rises, no matter what it takes.

Sixteen candles – Tia Williams
Tangie and her friends juggle romance, classes, and the arts with their friendship as the “It Chicks”.

Good enough – Paula Yoo
Patti is trying to get into an Ivy League school to please her parents, but this Korean-American teen also wants to have fun.

Divine Confidential – Jacquelin Thomas
After she moves from Hollywood to Georgia, Divine still wants to live her life as a diva and find romance.

A higher geometry – Sharelle Byars Moranville
In the late 1950s, Anna feels she must choose between the traditional role her parents expect of her and her dream of going to college to study mathematics.

Every crooked pot – Renee Rosen
Nina uses makeup and different hairstyles to hide her birthmark over one eye, in hopes of fitting in.

Maggie Bean stays afloat – Tricia Rayburn
Maggie has changed, through Pound Patrollers diet and exercise, but can she attract Peter Applewood and still keep her old friends?

Cures for heartbreak – Margo Rabb
After her mother dies and her father becomes sick, Mia deals with growing up and finding love.

Mistik Lake – Martha Brooks
Odella yearns to know the answers to family secrets that have affected three generations of women in her family.

Off-Color – Janet McDonald
A white girl and her mother are suddenly forced into public housing, where she struggles for acceptance while also discovering she’s biracial.

So not the drama – Paula Chase
Mina is determined that she will be as popular in high school as she was in middle school.

Mark asks…

What books should I read to gain knowledge in history?

I’m planning on majoring in history when I go to college (I’m a high school freshmen), because I find it interesting. But, I actually don’t know that much about it, and I wanted to get a good start now. Are there any books that you’ve read that have a good explanation about history? I’m looking for the history of any place and any time period, not just the United States. Thanks!

New Niche Finder answers:

Most of what you were taught in highschool probably was more than likely NOT very accurate history. I used to argue with my history teacher all the time in school because I did my own research and had more credible facts and sources than what he had. I’m majoring in Apparel & Textiles but my electives will all be history, I absolutely LOVE history. And world history is a great place to start, I started from the dawn of man and i’m working my way up till now.

Well I would start off with these…


also note that for american history christopher columbus was NOT the first to discover north america! It was the vikings!

Lizzie asks…

What were the most influential books on your life?

Minus religious texts, (and the the Book of Mormon!) what were the most influential books on your life? Maybe top 2-5?

New Niche Finder answers:

1. The Giver by Lois Lowry- this was the first book to really get me interested in reading and writing. I loved it so much that I read the companions, Gathering Blue and The Messenger, as well as any other book by Lowry that I could get my hands on. It also lead me to go to her book signing, where (by a marvelous twist of fate) I got to have lunch with her. This encounter inspired me to start writing.

#2. The Lord of the Flies by William Golding- this book contained so many fascinating analogies of human behavior that I became enthralled with psychology, which then lead me to my interest in the medical field.

#3. A Summer to Die by Lois Lowry- I discovered this book during my Lowry phase, but also during a time of my life where I could greatly relate to the story. It helped me through numerous life problems, and I was very lucky to have found it.

Mary asks…

What are the best five books to read for first time exspecting mothers?

Need help from someone who knows what their talking about (that reads LOL), good books for a mother to be that does want to breast feed and I am only a few weeks pregnant. Husband is clue less too but I have been internet surfing. Thank you!

New Niche Finder answers:

Congratulations to you!

I think I qualify to answer- I have had four children. With my first I think I literally bought every book available. By the time my fourth was born I had two favorites:

My favorite pregnancy books are Your Pregnancy Week by Week (note that if you are say, 7 weeks pregnant then you are in the 8th week) and A Child Is Born.

Your Pregnancy Week by Week has a lot of information and I like that it is weekly, makes you feel like you are progressing more often than a monthly book such as What To Expect When You’re Expecting (I do not really care for that one). A Child is Born has a lot of awesome pictures in it.

If you have not already discovered it, Baby Center (.com) has a great community with expecting clubs and other message boards for pregnancy and parenting related topics. IVillage (.com) does as well.

Nancy asks…

What are some books that teenagers can read over the summer?

I like realistic-fiction books, but anything will do. Although, please no non-fiction books.

If it helps, I read books like: The Clique Series by Lisi Harrison, and The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares.

Books like that would do.

Oh- and I also loved that book, Story of a Girl by Sara Zarr.

New Niche Finder answers:


Markus Zusak:
The Book Thief (Historical Fiction) and I Am the Messenger

Philippa Gregory:
The Other Boleyn Girl – Mary Boleyn comes to court at the age of fourteen and is noticed by Henry VIII. She basks in her role as unofficial queen until Henry begins to lose interest in her and turns to her sister, Anne.

Mitch Albom:
The Five People You Meet in Heaven; Tuesdays With Morrie; and For One More Day.

J. D. Salinger: Catcher in the Rye
Betty Smith:
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Coming of Age Novel)

John Knowles: A Separate Peace
John Gunther:
Death Be Not Proud (A memoir about the death of his son)

Richard Peck:
Long Way From Chicago and A Year Down Yonder

David Pelzer:
A Child Called “IT”; The Lost Boy; and A Man Named Dave

Amy Tan: The Joy Luck Club
Maya Angelou: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
Alice Sebold: The Lovely Bones
Jay Asher: Thirteen Reasons Why
Ellen Hopkins:
Crank and its sequel Glass about a girl addicted to drugs; Burned about a girl who is abused by her father and after being thrown out of school is sent to live with her aunt; and Impulse about teen suicide, drugs, and other issues.

Laurie Halse Anderson:
Prom, Twisted, Speak, Catalyst, and Fever 1793 (The first four are Contemporary and the last is Historical Fiction)

Kim Edwards: The Memory Keeper’s Daughter
S. E. Hinton (a.k.a. Susan Eloise Hinton):
The Outsiders; Rumble Fish; Tex; That Was Then, This is Now; Taming the Star Runner; and Some of Tim’s Stories

Scott Westerfeld:
Uglies – Tally is anticipating her 16th birthday when she will undergo an operation to make her unbelievably gorgeous. Her friend Shay isn’t interested in having the operation and takes off. Tally is forced to make a choice: locate Shay and turn her in or remain ugly.
Sequels: Pretties, Specials, and Extras

Libba Bray:
A Great and Terrible Beauty – Gemma Doyle grew up in India, but after the death of her mother the 16 year old is sent to Spence Academy in London. It is the Victorian Age and these young ladies are being trained for their future roles as wives to men they may not want to marry. As so many have experienced, initially she is an unwelcome outsider. Eventually, she makes friends with three girls and together they explore Gemma’s supernatural powers and a group known as the Order. (Fantasy)
Sequels: Rebel Angels and The Sweet Far Thing

Audrey Niffenegger: The Time Traveler’s Wife (Fantasy)
Alice Hoffman: Green Angel (Fantasy)
Lisa McMann:
Wake – Janie discovered when she was 8 years old that if someone nearby began to dream she was pulled unwillingly into that dream. She has always hated the falling dreams, and those where someone is naked in public, and the steamy sex dreams, but this latest dream is the worst. (Fantasy) Fade (The sequel – to be released February 2009)

Stephen Chbosky: The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Carolyn Mackler:
The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things

Sue Monk Kidd:
The Secret Life of Bees and The Mermaid Chair

Lauren Myracle:
TTYL (Talk to Ya Later)
ttfn (Ta Ta For Now)
L8r, g8r

Jodi Picoult:
My Sister’s Keeper – By age 13 Anna had undergone far too many surgeries, transfusions, and injections though she is not ill. Anna’s parents chose to produce a baby they hoped would be a donor match for their daughter Kate who suffered from leukemia. Now the teenage Anna rebels against the role that has been forced upon her though it could mean the death of her sister.

Nineteen Minutes (A Columbine Like Incident), The Pact (A suicide pact), Vanishing Acts, and Change of Heart

Nicholas Sparks:
The Notebook – Thirty one year old, Noah Calhoun is back in coastal North Carolina after WWII and thinking constantly about the girl he lost years ago. Twenty nine year old Allie Nelson is set to marry a wealthy lawyer, but is haunted by thoughts of the one she loved long ago.

Message in a Bottle – Theresa Osborne is divorced and cynical about love and life. This changes when she finds a bottle on the beach which contains a love letter. This is a beautiful story for those who choose to believe in the miracle of finding that special someone.

A Walk to Remember, The Rescue, A Bend in the Road, Nights in Rodanthe, The Guardian, The Wedding, True Believer, A First Sight, Dear John, and The Choice.

Sarah Dessen:
Lock and Key – Ruby has been living alone in the farmhouse since her mother abandoned her, but when this is discovered she is sent to live with her sister Cora who she has not seen in about 10 years. Cora’s husband Jamie is an extremely successful founder of a popular networking site on the Web. A nice large house, private school, new clothes, and a promise for the future are quite an adjustment to make.

Just Listen – Annabel Greene is the youngest of three very different sisters. She has had a very bad summer and must now return to school. She has never been so lonely or so sad, yet she must face each day. As she has her own problems to confront, her entire family is dealing with issues that plague her sister, Whitney. By circumstance, Annabel and Owen, whose life revolves around music, become friends. It is Owen who will help Annabel to meet certain challenges.

The Truth About Forever – Macy’s father has recently died and she is feeling guilty. Her mother isn’t coping with his death well at all. Macy’s boyfriend, Jason, represents security, but frankly he is a clueless jerk. It might have been a very long summer, but then by chance Macy meets an interesting group of people. I loved everyone in the Wish Catering crew, but most especially Wes. No matter the difficulties life has thrown each member of Wish they persevere because they must.

Dreamland – Caitlin is the younger and she feels second-rate sister to Cass who is perfect in every way. Now Caitlin is 16 and rather than starting at Yale, Cass has run off with a guy. This year for Caitlin is about school, cheerleading, parties, her boyfriend, and so much much more. Unfortunately, this novel has an important message every young lady needs to hear.

Keeping the Moon – Colie and her mother used to be fat. They moved frequently and were homeless for a time. Then Colie’s mother went on a “let’s get healthy” kick and they both lost weight. Now mom has a good job and they live in a nice house. Unfortunately, because of a really mean girl at school, Colie has acquired a reputation she did not deserve. Mom is going to Europe to work for the summer and Colie is going to spend the summer with her eccentric aunt.

That Summer – Summers hold special memories for many of us: vacations, beaches, picnics, summer jobs, summer loves, maybe even a wedding or two. Haven, younger sister to Ashley, is fondly remembering a summer five years ago because in this current summer her world is falling apart. Her father had an affair, her parents divorced, and now he is getting married to the co-worker with whom he had the affair. Ashley is also getting married this summer and Haven doesn’t understand why Ashley would choose this man.

Someone Like You – Halley and Scarlet, both 16 and juniors in high school, have been best friends forever. Scarlet was always the strong one, but now she needs Halley to be there for her. As they begin the new school year, Scarlet is pregnant and her boyfriend has been killed in a motorcycle accident. Meanwhile Halley has problems of her own. Halley and her mother, a psychologist, have gotten along well in the past but that has changed. Halley’s mother used to write books about their relationship, but now they just argue.

This Lullaby – Remy, Jess, Chloe, and Lissa are friends (sort of) and now it is the summer between high school and college. This is a time of transition for each of them, but the story concentrates on Remy who because her mother has had a series of husbands and Remy never even met her father, she is very cynical about love.

Ann Brashares: The Last Summer (of You & Me)

Meg Cabot:
All American Girl and Ready or Not; Teen Idol; Nicola and the Viscount; Victoria and the Rogue; Pants on Fire; Jinx; Avalon High and Avalon High 2: Coronation

1-800-Where R You? Series – When Lightning Strikes, Code Name Cassandra, Safe House, Sanctuary, and Missing You

Mediator Series (Fantasy) – Shadowland; Ninth Key; Reunion; Darkest Hour; Haunted; and Twilight

Princess Series – Princess Diaries; Princess in the Spotlight; Princess in Love; Princess in Waiting; Project Princess; Princess in Pink; Princess in Training; The Princess Present; Party Princess; Sweet Sixteen Princess; Valentine Princess; Princess on the Brink; Princess Mia; Princess Lessons; Perfect Princess; and Holiday Princess

Robin Jones Gunn:
Christy Miller Series – Summer Promise; A Whisper and a Wish; Yours Forever; Surprise Endings; Island Dreamer; A Heart Full of Hope; True Friends; Starry Night; Seventeen Wishes; A Time to Cherish; Sweet Dreams; and A Promise is Forever.

Sierra Jensen Series – Only You, Sierra; In Your Dreams; Don’t You Wish; Close Your Eyes; Without a Doubt; With This Ring; Open Your Heart; Time Will Tell; Now Picture This; Hold on Tight; Closer Than Ever; and Take My Hand.

Katie Weldon Series – Peculiar Treasures

Emily Giffin:
Something Blue (2nd) – Shallow, vapid, Darcy Rhone has always believed that the beautiful people are blessed, but then her plain looking friend Rachel White steals her fiance leaving Darcy alone and pregnant by another man. This is a novel about forgiveness, friendship, true love, and the happy-ever-after so many seek.

Something Borrowed (1st), Baby Proof (3rd), and Love the One You’re With

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