2021 Books for Missouri Students
Fleeing to Catalina Island for the summer, Abby is relieved to be in a place where no one knows her tragic history. But when she meets aspiring documentary filmmaker Ben–tall, outdoorsy, easygoing, with eyes that don’t miss a thing–she’s thrown off her game. Ben’s the kind of guy who loves to figure out people’s stories. What if he learns hers?
When Kate’s parent’s store is vandalized and the vandal still at large, Nelo is shaken to her core. And then the police and the media get involved and more of the outside world descends upon Ginger East with promises to “fix the neighborhood.” Suddenly, Nelo finds herself in the middle of a drama unfolding on a national scale.
Worse yet, Kate is acting strange. She’s pushing Nelo away at the exact moment they need each other most. Now Nelo’s entire world is morphing into something she hates and she must figure out how to get things back on track or risk losing everything–and everyone–she loves.
Peyton King has always wanted to belong. She seizes the opportunity to start over at a new school and finally finds real connections with the friends she’s always dreamed of and even an actual boyfriend!
But after flying high in her newfound happiness, Peyton comes crashing down when reality sets in and the ones she cares about let her down. Peyton’s friends can’t fix her and she can’t help them if they won’t let her. If she wants to find real, lasting happiness, Peyton will have to search somewhere else.
With nothing but her sketchpad and a backpack, she buys a one-way ticket and gets on a plane. How far will she go to change her story?
When Lori’s Dorothy Parker–loving grandmother dies, Lori’s world is turned upside down. Grandma Sheryl was everything to Lori—and not just because Sheryl raised Lori when Lori’s mom got a job out of town. Now Lori’s mom is insisting on moving her away from her beloved Boston right before senior year. Desperate to stay for as long as possible, Lori insists on honoring her grandmother’s last request before she moves: to scatter Sheryl’s ashes near things that grow. Along with her uncle Seth and Chris, best friend and love-of-her-life crush, Lori sets off on a road trip to visit her grandmother’s favorite gardens.
Meanwhile her older brother, Kai, is looking for her. And his smart new friend Shay may hold the key to uncovering what truly happened–Shay was the last to see Callie alive. The problem is getting past the soldiers at the quarantine zone boundaries.
But even when reunited the teens must find the source of disease. Could Callie have been part of an experiment in biological warfare? Who is behind the research? Is there a cure?
Growing up in foster care, Muir has lived in many houses. And if she’s learned one thing, it is to Pack. Light. Carry only what fits in a suitcase.
Emotional attachment to friends? foster families? a boyfriend? Nope!
There’s no room for any additional baggage.
Muir has just one year left before she ages out of the system. One year before she’s free. One year to avoid anything–or anyone–that could get in her way.
Then she meets Francine. And Kira. And Sean.
And everything changes.
1800, Joseon (Korea). Homesick and orphaned sixteen-year-old Seol is living out the ancient curse: “May you live in interesting times.” Indentured to the police bureau, she’s been tasked with assisting a well-respected young inspector with the investigation into the politically charged murder of a noblewoman.
As they delve deeper into the dead woman’s secrets, Seol forms an unlikely bond of friendship with the inspector. But her loyalty is tested when he becomes the prime suspect, and Seol may be the only one capable of discovering what truly happened on the night of the murder.
But in a land where silence and obedience are valued above all else, curiosity can be deadly.
Gene doesn’t get sports. As a kid, his friends called him “Stick” and every basketball game he played ended in pain. He lost interest in basketball long ago, but at the high school where he now teaches, it’s all anyone can talk about. The men’s varsity team, the Dragons, is having a phenomenal season that’s been decades in the making. Each victory brings them closer to their ultimate goal: the California State Championships.
Once Gene gets to know these young all-stars, he realizes that their story is just as thrilling as anything he’s seen on a comic book page. He knows he has to follow this epic to its end. What he doesn’t know yet is that this season is not only going to change the Dragons’s lives, but his own life as well.
A year after the fire that destroyed her world, her aunt and uncle have decided she should go back to high school. Be “normal” again. Whatever that is. Ava knows better. There is no normal for someone like her. And forget making friends–no one wants to be seen with the Burned Girl, now or ever.
But when Ava meets a fellow survivor named Piper, she begins to feel like maybe she doesn’t have to face the nightmare alone. Sarcastic and blunt, Piper isn’t afraid to push Ava out of her comfort zone. Piper introduces Ava to Asad, a boy who loves theater just as much as she does, and slowly, Ava tries to create a life again. Yet Piper is fighting her own battle, and soon Ava must decide if she’s going to fade back into her scars . . . or let the people by her side help her fly.
Sky is used to standing in the shadow of her best friend. Lay Li is the sun everyone orbits around. But since high school started, Lay Li has begun attracting the attention of boys, and Sky is left out in the cold. The only place Sky can find her footing is on the basketball court. With each dribble of the ball, Sky begins to find her own rhythm. Lay Li may always be the sun, but that doesn’t mean Sky can’t shine on her own.
With gritty and heartbreaking honesty, a critically acclaimed poet, delivers her first novel in verse about broken promises, fast rumors, and learning to generate your own light.
Caroline “Chuck” Wilson has big plans for spring break—hit up estate sales to score vintage fashion finds and tour the fashion school she dreams of attending. But her dad wrecks those plans when he asks her to spend vacation working the counter at Bigmouth’s Bowl, her family’s failing bowling alley. Making things astronomically worse, Chuck finds out her dad is way behind on back rent—meaning they might be losing Bigmouth’s, the only thing keeping Chuck’s family in San Francisco.
And the one person other than Chuck who wants to do anything about it? Beckett Porter, her annoyingly attractive ex-best friend.
So when Beckett propositions Chuck with a plan to make serious cash infiltrating the Bay Area action bowling scene, she accepts. But she can’t shake the nagging feeling that she’s acting irrational—too much like her mother for comfort. Plus, despite her best efforts to keep things strictly business, Beckett’s charm is winning her back over…in ways that go beyond friendship.
If Chuck fails, Bigmouth’s Bowl and their San Francisco legacy are gone forever. But if she succeeds, she might just get everything she ever wanted.
All her life, Siena has dreamed of being a ballerina. Her love of movement and dedication to the craft earned her a spot at the School of American Ballet, with hopes of becoming a member of George Balanchine’s world-famous New York City Ballet company. Siena has worked hard for many years to be a professional ballet dancer, but injury and doubt are starting to take their toll.
Maybe it’s time to look beyond the world of dance—but Siena’s whole identity has been shaped by ballet. When you have spent your entire life working toward something, how do you figure out what comes next? And how do you figure out who you are without the thing that defined you? This is a moving and beautifully drawn memoir of a dancer struggling to find her next step—and a young woman finding her true footing in the world.
Lifelong rivals Natalie and Reid have never been on the same team. So when their school’s art budget faces cutbacks, of course Natalie finds herself up against her nemesis once more. She’s fighting to direct the school’s first ever student-written play, but for her small production to get funding, the school’s award-winning band will have to lose it. Reid’s band. And he’s got no intention of letting the show go on.
But when their rivalry turns into an all-out prank war that goes too far, Natalie and Reid have to face the music, resulting in the worst compromise: writing and directing a musical. Together. At least if they deliver a sold-out show, the school board will reconsider next year’s band and theater budget. Everyone could win.
Except Natalie and Reid.
Because after spending their entire lives in competition, they have absolutely no idea how to be co-anything. And they certainly don’t know how to deal with the feelings that are inexplicably, weirdly, definitely developing between them…
In this contemporary fantasy, the half-Mexican, half-Scottish Rivera sisters—17-year-old Dani and 19-year-old Eden—have grown up in a family of dragon hunters in the middle of the U.S.’s Smoky Mountains, trained from birth to serve as “one of the few bastions protecting humanity from dragonkind.” Despite Eden’s greater dedication, Dani’s skill outstrips her sister’s. When Dani develops a rare bond with a dragon named Nox, she is forced to reconsider her previous beliefs on their danger. Eden’s own decision to contact the sorcerers—the dragon hunters’ mysterious allies—in order to save Dani turns the sisters into enemies, setting the scene for a conflict wherein their personal relationship becomes intertwined with the political. Soria (Beneath the Citadel) skillfully delves into the complexities of sibling dynamics—in part through Eden’s feelings of insecurity around Dani, whose careless approach and desire for “normal teenager plans” grates on Eden—in alternating third-person chapters. Though the worldbuilding occasionally lacks detail, and teenage bisexual Dani’s light romance is somewhat uneven, multidimensional supporting characters strengthen the narrative with humor and pithy dialogue, while tight, spare prose ensures the narrative retains vigor.
Rowenna Winthrop has always known there’s magic within her. But though she hears voices on the wind and possesses unusual talents, her mother Mairead believes Rowenna lacks discipline, and refuses to teach her the craft that keeps their Scottish village safe. And when Mairead dies a sinister death, it seems Rowenna’s only chance to grow into her power has died with her. Then, on a fateful, storm-tossed night, Rowenna rescues a handsome stranger named Gawen from a shipwreck, and her mother miraculously returns from the dead. Or so it appears.
The resurrected Mairead is nothing like the old one. To hide her new monstrous nature, she turns Rowenna’s brothers and Gawen into swans and robs Rowenna of her voice. Forced to flee, Rowenna travels to the city of Inverness to find a way to break the curse. But monsters take many forms, and in Inverness, Rowenna is soon caught in a web of strangers who want to use her raw magic for their own gain. If she wishes to save herself and the people she loves most, Rowenna will have to take her fate into her own hands and unlock the power that has evaded her for so long.
Spending the summer between her junior and senior years of high school working at her mother’s bridal boutique, Beneath the Veil, isn’t Harper’s dream, but it’s not all bad. She has a fun coworker; a window view of handsome classmate Felix, who works out nearby; and regular contact with best friend and neighbor Theo. Despite the gig, though, cued-white Harper is a “hardened cynic” who’s refused to date since being dumped by her first boyfriend. LARPer Theo, on the other hand, who’s of Puerto Rican, Greek, and Swedish heritage, is deeply romantic, crying over rom-coms, sending roses, and “falling in love with every girl who lets you buy her an ice cream cone.” Tired of having his heart broken, Theo agrees to let Harper teach him to date casually. While persuading readers that the protagonists are MFEO, Firkins (Hearts, Strings, and Other Breakable Things) creates an adroit, even suspenseful dance of push and pull: Harper overthinks relationships and considers Felix’s appeal, and Theo fears being hurt. The resulting will-they-or-won’t-they not only gives rom-com formulas a playful refresh, it makes a strong case for the joys of medieval cosplay.
The freeway is coming.
It will cut the neighborhood in two. Construction has already started, pushing toward this corridor of condemned houses and cracked concrete with the momentum of the inevitable. Yet there you are, in the fifth house on the left, fighting for your life.
The victim of the bet between two manufactured gods: the seductive and lethal Roxy (Oxycontin), who is at the top of her game, and the smart, high-achieving Addison (Adderall), who is tired of being the helpful one, and longs for a more dangerous, less wholesome image. The wager—a contest to see who can bring their mark to “the Party” first—is a race to the bottom of a rave that has raged since the beginning of time. And you are only human, dazzled by the lights and music. Drawn by what the drugs offer—tempted to take that step past helpful to harmful…and the troubled places that lie beyond.
But there are two I. Rameys—Isaac, a soccer player thrown into Roxy’s orbit by a bad fall and a bad doctor and Ivy, his older sister, whose increasing frustration with her untreated ADHD leads her to renew her acquaintance with Addy.
Which one are you?
Kiva Meridan is a survivor.
Not only did she survive Zalindov Prison, but also the deadly Trial by Ordeal. Now, Kiva’s purpose goes beyond survival to vengeance. For the past ten years, her only goal was to reunite with her family and destroy the people responsible for ruining their lives. But now that she has escaped Zalindov, her mission has become more complicated than ever.
As Kiva settles into her new life in the capital, she discovers she wasn’t the only one who suffered while she was in Zalindov — her siblings and their beliefs have changed, too. Soon it’s not just her enemies she’s keeping secrets from, but her own family as well.
Outside the city walls, tensions are brewing from the rebels, along with whispers of a growing threat from the northern kingdoms. Kiva’s allegiances are more important than ever, but she’s beginning to question where they truly lie. To survive this time, she’ll have to navigate a complicated web of lies before both sides of the battle turn against her and she loses everything.
Before she kissed one of the Cohen boys, seventeen-year-old Jessi Rumfield knew what it was like to have a family—even if, technically, that family didn’t belong to her. She’d spent her childhood in the house next door, challenging Rowan Cohen to tennis matches while his older brother, Luke, studied in the background and Mel watched over the three like the mother Jessi always wished she had.
But then everything changed. It’s been almost a year since Jessi last visited the Cohen house. Rowan is gone. Mel is in remission and Luke hates Jessi for the role she played in breaking his family apart. Now Jessi spends her days at a dead-end summer job avoiding her real mother, who suddenly wants to play a role in Jessi’s life after being absent for so long. But when Luke comes home from college, it’s hard to ignore the past. And when he asks Jessi to pretend to be his girlfriend for the final months of Mel’s life, Jessi finds herself drawn back into the world of the Cohens. Everything’s changed, but Jessi can’t help wanting to be a Cohen, even if it means playing pretend for one final summer.
The term “Apple” is a slur in Native communities across the country. It’s for someone supposedly “red on the outside, white on the inside.”
Eric Gansworth tells his story, the story of his family, of Onondaga among Tuscaroras, of Native folks everywhere. From the horrible legacy of the government boarding schools, to a boy watching his siblings leave and return and leave again, to a young man fighting to be an artist who balances multiple worlds.
What do you do when an eccentric billionaire names you as his heir over his children and grandchildren, a billionaire who is a stranger to you? Avery Grambs makes the decision to move into the mansion as required and try to get to the bottom of the mystery of who Tobias Hawthorne is and why he left her as the heir to nearly his entire fortune.
What does it mean to be a Player? Players rule the school. Players have the inside track to tests, college prep, and college admissions. Who wouldn’t want to be a Player? But, being a member means Freshmen must be at the beck-and-call of seniors and to never say no to a request. What really happened that night at the beach during Jill and Shaila’s freshman year?
It has been three years since Sia’s mother was deported to Mexico, escaped, an attempted to walk across the Sonoran Desert to return home. Sia has never given up hope and lights candles monthly for her mother’s safe return. An unusual turn of events leads to information Sia and her father never expected.
It’s August in Paris and 17-year-old Khayyam Maquet American, French, Indian, Muslim is at a crossroads. The holiday with her parents should be a dream trip but she might have just blown her chance at her dream college. Khayyam meets Alexandre Dumas, descendant of THE Alexandre Dumas, and her whole summer changes.
After ten years of living on an isolated, tech-free ranch with her mother, sixteen-year-old Hedda is going back to the world of the Glare, her word for cell phones, computers, and tablets. Hedda was taught to be afraid of technology, afraid that it would get inside her mind and hurt her. But now she’s going to stay with her dad in California, where she was born, and she finally ready to be normal.
Jenna’s never let her cerebral palsy get her down. But when she discovers that her condition was actually caused by an injury at birth, she’s furious with her parents, who withheld the truth. An as they push her to get yet another difficult procedure, Jenna feels her control over her life starting to slip.
200 years after Cinderella, teen girls are now required to appear at the Annual Ball, where men of the kingdom select wives. Girls who do not find a match are considered “forfeit” and most are never heard from again. Sophia flees from the ball and finds herself in the midst of the mystery that is taking place in the palace and kingdom.
The sequel to Girls with Sharp Sticks by The Program author, Suzanne Young does not disappoint. Mena and the other girls of Innovations Academy enroll in Ridgeview Prep, seeking revenge against the corporation that traumatized them at Innovations Academy, but they still face many obstacles.The continuing story of Mena and her classmates will keep you on the edge of your seat.