Thanks to Carla of Carla Loves to Read for the super illustration above. Check out her blog; it’s a winner!

This morning’s recommendations are aimed at girls, specifically twelve-and- thirteen-year-olds.

K.L. Going wrote a moving novel, Pieces of Why, in 2015, but it is timely today with its universal narrative and message. Tia’s dad is in prison; she has been told why, but during the story, she finds out her mother has lied to her. Many family mysteries come clear as she digs to find answers, knowing she won’t like what she finds. Only her singing talent saves her from bearing an unbearable burden and eventually heals the rift between her mother and her. It is a moving, empathetic story of a young girl’s difficult life.

The Summer Before Boys by Nora Raleigh Baskin is the story of two best friends and how, as so often is the case, a boy comes between them. Julia and Eliza are related in a convoluted way, so they tell people they are cousins. More importantly, they are best friends. While Julia’s mother is deployed to Afghanistan, Julia is sent to live with Eliza and her family at Mohawk, a summer hotel and retreat. This is the perfect situation for the girls until a note from Michael, the groomsman at the stable’s son sends Julia a note asking her to meet him at the Lily Pond one evening after dinner. Julia’s preoccupation with Michael is something she attempts to keep hidden from Eliza, but doing this ends in estrangement and a near tragedy. This one will have you holding your breath with fear and anticipation as you read.

These books are ones I read for my younger blogging friends whom I follow with interest and provide me with entertaining and engaging reading from their blogs as well as teach me about technology by thinking “If they can do it, so can I!” This post is dedicated to them.


Author: Rae Longest

This year (2019) finds me with 50 plus years of teaching "under my belt." I have taught all levels from pre-K "(library lady" or "book lady"--volunteer) to juniors, seniors, and graduate students enrolled in my Advanced Writing class at the university where I have just completed 30 years. My first paying teaching job was junior high, and I spent 13 years with ages 12-13, the "difficult years." I had some of the "funnest" experiences with this age group. When I was no longer the "young, fun teacher," I taught in an elementary school setting before sixth graders went on to junior high, teaching language arts blocs, an assignment that was a "dream-fit" for me. After completing graduate school in my 40s, I went on to community college, then university teaching. Just as teaching is "in my blood," so is a passion for reading, writing, libraries, and everything bookish. This blog will be open to anyone who loves books, promotes literacy and wants to "come out and play."

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