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Rachel R.

Biography

Rachel R.

Teen Board Member

Basking Ridge, NJ

Hi! My name is Rachel, and I'm a junior in high school in New Jersey. I've enjoyed reading ever since I was young (it's hard not to when you grow up a block from the library), and that passion led me to Teenreads. I love books (of course), the beach, “Star Trek,” Star Wars, historical shows like “Victoria” and my newest favorite, “Downton Abbey” (I'm still not over the season 3 finale and, yes, Violet is definitely my favorite character). If I'm not reading, I'm usually playing the violin, spending time outside, doing homework, driving my family crazy with my incessant talking or trying to figure out how many books I can carry home from my local library at once.

Top Five Favorite Books:
1. THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR by Nicola Yoon
2. MY LADY JANE by Brodi Ashton, Cynthia Hand, and Jodi Meadows
3. THE DISAPPEARANCES by Emily Bain Murphy
4. STRANGE THE DREAMER by Laini Taylor
5. THE EPIC CRUSH OF GENIE LO by F.C. Yee

Rachel R.

Reviews by Rachel R.

by Nancy Richardson Fischer - Coming of Age, Contemporary Fiction, Family, Fiction, Mental Health, Social Issues, Young Adult 14+

When Lily Decker was seven, her mother, who had paranoid schizophrenia, tried to kill her. A secret has revealed that Lily’s odds for inheriting the disorder are even worse than she thought. Still, there’s a chance to avoid triggering the mental health condition, if Lily can live a careful life from ages 18 to 30, when schizophrenia most commonly manifests. But when a newspaper internship results in Lily witnessing a mother elephant try to kill her three-week-old calf, Swifty, Lily can’t abandon the story or the calf. With Swifty in danger of dying from grief, Lily must choose whether to risk everything, including her sanity and a first love, on a desperate road trip to save the calf’s life, perhaps finding her own version of freedom along the way.

by Tom Pollock - Fiction, Suspense, Thriller

Seventeen-year-old Peter Blankman is a math genius. He also suffers from devastating panic attacks. Pete gets through each day with the help of his mother --- a famous scientist --- and his beloved twin sister, Bel. But when his mom is nearly assassinated in front of his eyes and Bel disappears, Pete finds himself on the run. Dragged into a world where state and family secrets intertwine, Pete must use his extraordinary analytical skills to find his missing sister and track down the people who attacked his mother. But his greatest battle will be with the enemy inside: the constant terror that threatens to overwhelm him.

by Lauren Spieller - Coming of Age, Family, Family Life, Fiction, Romance, Young Adult 14+

Dessa Rhodes is a modern day nomad. Her family travels in an RV, their lives defined by state lines, exit signs and the small communal caravan they call home. Among them is Cyrus, her best friend and long-time crush, whom she knows she can never be with. When your families are perpetually linked, it’s too dangerous to take a risk on romance. Instead, Dessa looks to the future. She wants to be a real artist and going to art school is her ticket to success and a new life. There’s just one problem: she hasn’t been accepted…anywhere. Suddenly her future is wide open, and it looks like she’s going to be stuck traveling forever.

by Meg Leder - Fiction, Romance

Parker struggles to reconnect with her twin brother, Charlie --- who’s recovering from cancer --- as she tries to deal with her anxiety about the future. Now that Charlie is officially in remission, life couldn’t be going better for Parker. She has landed a prestigious summer internship at the hospital and is headed to Harvard in the fall to study pediatric oncology. Enter Finn, a boy who’s been leaving strange graffiti messages all over town. Parker can’t stop thinking about those messages, or about Finn, who makes her feel free for the first time: free to doubt, free to make mistakes, and free to confront the truth that Parker has been hiding from for a long time --- that she keeps trying to save Charlie, when the person who really needs saving is herself.

by Sarah Tolcser - Fantasy, Fiction, Romance, Young Adult 13+

Caro and Markos have settled into a routine: Wake up, eat breakfast, and try to figure out who might attempt to assassinate Markos today...so the currents aren't exactly calm. Markos is in constant danger, and his claim to the throne is shaky without the support of an army. But then a powerful Archon offers Markos the military might he needs in exchange for marrying his daughter. Markos and Caro must decide which is more important: their love for each other or the fate of Akhaia.

by Julie Buxbaum - Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Young Adult 12+

When an unlikely friendship is sparked between relatively popular Kit Lowell and socially isolated David Drucker, everyone is surprised, most of all Kit and David.  Kit appreciates David’s blunt honesty --- in fact, she finds it bizarrely refreshing. David welcomes Kit’s attention and her inquisitive nature. When she asks for his help figuring out the how and why of her dad’s tragic car accident, David is all in. But neither of them can predict what they’ll find. Can their friendship survive the truth?

by Roshani Chokshi - Fantasy, Fiction, Science Fiction

Gauri, the princess of Bharata, has been taken as a prisoner of war by her kingdom’s enemies. Hope unexpectedly comes in the form of Vikram, the cunning prince of a neighboring land and her sworn enemy kingdom. Together, they’ll have to set aside their differences and team up to win the Tournament of Wishes --- a competition held in a mythical city where the Lord of Wealth promises a wish to the victor. But what Gauri and Vikram will soon discover is that there’s nothing more dangerous than what they most desire.

by Tomi Adeyemi - Fantasy, Fiction, Magic, Prejudice , Racism, Young Adult 14+

Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope. Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy.

by Leah Thomas - Family, Fiction, Friendship, Science Fiction, Young Adult 13+, Youth Fiction

When the Vasquez siblings' father left, it seemed nothing could remedy the absence in their lives ... until a shimmering figure named Luz appeared in the canyon behind their house. He shot hoops with 17-year-old Hank's hands. He showed 14-year-old Ana cinematic beauty behind her eyelids. He spoke kindly to eight-year-old Milo. But then Luz left, too, and he took something from each of them. As a new school year begins, Hank, Ana and Milo must carry on as if an alien presence never altered them. But how can they ever feel close to other people again when Luz changed everything about how they see the world and themselves?

by Rachael Allen - Contemporary Fiction, Fiction, Romance, Young Adult 13+

The moment Spencer meets Hope the summer before seventh grade, it’s ... something at first sight. The pair become fast friends, climbing trees and planning world travels. Through sibling feuds and family tragedies, new relationships and broken hearts, the two grow together and apart, and Spencer, an aspiring scientist, tries to map it all out using his trusty system of taxonomy. He wants to identify and classify their relationship, but in the end, he finds that life doesn’t always fit into easy-to-manage boxes, and it’s this messy complexity that makes life so rich and beautiful.