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Youth book reviews

Selected and reviewed by the Keen Readers team. These are not sponsored reviews.

Battle of the Dinosaur Bones

By Rebecca L. Johnson

Lerner Books
Ages 12-18

Think scientists always agree? Hah! Not likely! Science is not nearly as pure and exact as some would have you believe. And the people who work in the field are not always motivated purely by the love of acquiring new knowledge. more »

Decoding Our DNA

By Karen Gunnison Ballen

Lerner Books
Ages 14-18

Think science consists of guys in white coats who never argue? Think again! Part of the “Scientific Rivalries and Scandals” series, this book discusses the Human Genome Project—a mapping of human DNA that began in 1990. First it provides background for the science of genetics, and the inspiration and motivation for mapping the human genome. more »

Hummingbird Heart

By Robin Stevenson


Dylan’s mother has always referred to Dylan’s father as a loser. According to her mom, Dylan’s father was “no one important,” “a one-night stand” when they were both teenagers. It’s alright with Dylan; all she needs is her mother, a free-spirited artist, her newly adopted sister Karma and her best friend Toni. Not that those relationships are easy more »


By Meagan Spooner

Lerner Books
Ages 12-18

At 15 Lark is older than most of the children in her city who have been “harvested” of their magic to feed the machines that keep their home safe. Finally her time has come, but she discovers she is not like the others. Her magic seems renewable and it appears that she will be enslaved by her own people and forced to sacrifice herself for the safety of all. more »

Being a DJ

By Lisa Regan

Lerner Books
Ages 10-15

Are you into beat juggling, phasing, and raves? Do you like music, but want to shape it to your own desires and use it to send a crowd gyrating to its beat? Then maybe you should be a DJ. more »

Eye Color: Brown, Blue, Green, and Other Hues

By Jennifer Boothroyd

Lerner books
Ages 8-11

Take a mirror and gaze deeply into your eyes. What color are they? Brown? Blue? Hazel? Have you ever noticed how many eye colors there are out there? Why do some people have blue eyes, and why do so many people have brown ones? more »

The Haunting of Apartment 101

By Megan Atwood

Lerner Books
Ages 12-15

Jinx has a chip on her shoulder. Before, other teens at school ignored her existence, so she changed her personality. Now they know she exists because they’re scared of her. Well, maybe that’s a step up. more »

Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks

ByG. Patrick Vennebush

Robert D. Reed Publishers

Q: What do you get if you divide the circumference of a jack-o-lantern by its diameter?
A: Pumpkin pi.

I knew I was in for trouble as I flipped through the last half of the book; an English major is no match for an elevated math joke, much less an entire book of them. Yet I found myself surprised by a few chuckles that came from the beginning of Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks. more »

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Alphabetical reviews