Tricks by Ellen Hopkins

Tricks by Ellen Hopkins

Five teenagers from different parts of the country. Three girls. Two guys. Four straight. One gay. Some rich. Some poor. Some from great families. Some with no one at all. All living their lives as best they can, but all searching … for freedom, safety, community, family, love. What they don’t expect, though, is all that can happen when those powerful little words “I love you” are said for all the wrong reasons.

Five moving stories remain separate at first, then interweave to tell a larger, powerful story—a story about making choices, taking leaps of faith, falling down, and growing up. A story about kids figuring out what sex and love are all about, at all costs, while asking themselves, “Can I ever feel okay about myself?”

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Homomisia
  • Child abuse & neglect
  • Rape
  • Sexual assault
  • Substance addiction
  • Alcohol consumption & abuse
  • Recreational drug abuse
  • Hospitalisation
  • Murder
Support Us at Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com

Identical by Ellen Hopkins

Identical by Ellen Hopkins

Kaeleigh and Raeanne are identical down to the dimple. As daughters of a district-court judge father and a politician mother, they are an all-American family—on the surface. Behind the facade each sister has her own dark secret, and that’s where their differences begin.

For Kaeleigh, she’s the misplaced focus of Daddy’s love, intended for a mother whose presence on the campaign trail means absence at home. All that Raeanne sees is Daddy playing a game of favorites—and she is losing. If she has to lose, she will do it on her own terms, so she chooses drugs, alcohol, and sex.

Secrets like the ones the twins are harboring are not meant to be kept—from each other or anyone else. Pretty soon it’s obvious that neither sister can handle it alone, and one sister must step up to save the other, but the question is—who?

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Graphic paedophilia & child sexual abuse (on-page)
  • Incest
  • Rape & sexual assault (on-page)
  • Forced modelling for child pornorgraphy recounted
  • Cheating
  • Physical child abuse
  • Self-harm
  • Depression
  • Alcoholism
  • Alcohol consumption & abuse
  • Recreational drug use & abuse
  • Blood depiction
  • Emesis
  • Car accident
Support Us at Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com

Burned by Ellen Hopkins

Burned by Ellen Hopkins

It all started with a dream. Nothing exceptional, just a typical fantasy about a boy, the kind of dream that most teen girls experience. But Pattyn Von Stratten is not like most teen girls. Raised in a religious—yet abusive—family, a simple dream may not be exactly a sin, but it could be the first step toward hell and eternal damnation.

This dream is a first step for Pattyn. But is it to hell or to a better life? For the first time Pattyn starts asking questions. Questions seemingly without answers—about God, a woman’s role, sex, love—mostly love. What is it? Where is it? Will she ever experience it? Is she deserving of it? … Read more.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Disownment*
  • Physical child abuse
  • Domestic abuse & violence
  • Suicide
  • Alcoholism & alcohol abuse
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Miscarriage
  • Car accident
  • Animal death & hunting

*Note: The protagonist’s half-brother is disowned by their father after he comes out as gay.

Support Us at Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com

The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys

The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys

Madrid, 1957. Under the fascist dictatorship of General Francisco Franco, Spain is hiding a dark secret. Meanwhile, tourists and foreign businessmen flood into Spain under the welcoming promise of sunshine and wine. Among them is eighteen-year-old Daniel Matheson, the son of an oil tycoon, who arrives in Madrid with his parents hoping to connect with the country of his mother’s birth through the lens of his camera. Photography–and fate–introduce him to Ana, whose family’s interweaving obstacles reveal the lingering grasp of the Spanish Civil War–as well as chilling definitions of fortune and fear. Daniel’s photographs leave him with uncomfortable questions amidst shadows of danger. He is backed into a corner of difficult decisions to protect those he loves. Lives and hearts collide, revealing an incredibly dark side to the sunny Spanish city.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Miscarriage mentioned
  • Death of an infant
  • Death of a parent recounted
  • Murder
  • Gun violence
  • Torture recounted
  • Imprisonment
  • Blackmail
  • Disappearance of a child
  • Animal cruelty
Support Us at Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com

Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys

Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys

It’s 1950, and as the French Quarter of New Orleans simmers with secrets, seventeen-year-old Josie Moraine is silently stirring a pot of her own. Known among locals as the daughter of a brothel sex worker, Josie wants more out of life than the Big Easy has to offer. She devises a plan get out, but a mysterious death in the Quarter leaves Josie tangled in an investigation that will challenge her allegiance to her mother, her conscience, and Willie Woodley, the brusque madam on Conti Street.

Josie is caught between the dream of an elite college and a clandestine underworld. New Orleans lures her in her quest for truth, dangling temptation at every turn, and escalating to the ultimate test.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Domestic violence & abuse
  • Blood & gore depiction
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Murder
  • Gun violence
  • Knife violence
  • Poisoning
  • Kidnapping
Support Us at Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

Lina is just like any other fifteen-year-old Lithuanian girl in 1941. She paints, she draws, she gets crushes on boys. Until one night when Soviet officers barge into her home, tearing her family from the comfortable life they’ve known. Separated from her father, forced onto a crowded and dirty train car, Lina, her mother, and her young brother slowly make their way north, crossing the Arctic Circle, to a work camp in the coldest reaches of Siberia. Here they are forced, under Stalin’s orders, to dig for beets and fight for their lives under the cruelest of conditions.

Lina finds solace in her art, meticulously—and at great risk—documenting events by drawing, hoping these messages will make their way to her father’s prison camp to let him know they are still alive. It is a long and harrowing journey, spanning years and covering 6,500 miles, but it is through incredible strength, love, and hope that Lina ultimately survives. 

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Sexual assault
  • Forced sex work
  • Starvation
  • Dead bodies
  • Recreational drug use (smoking)
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Gun violence
  • Deportation
  • Forced labour in work camps
  • World War Two (theme)
Support Us at Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com

Hard Reboot by Django Wexler

Hard Reboot by Django Wexler

Kas is a junior researcher on a fact-finding mission to old Earth. But when a con-artist tricks her into wagering a large sum of money belonging to her university on the outcome of a manned robot arena battle she becomes drawn into the seedy underworld of old Earth politics and state-sponsored battle-droid prizefights.

Is it time to get back to the books, yet?

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Ableism
  • Sex work shaming
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Blood & gore depiction
  • Emesis
Support Us at Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com

The Young Elites by Marie Lu

The Young Elites by Marie Lu

Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Adelina’s black hair turned silver, her lashes went pale, and now she has only a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Her cruel father believes she is a malfetto, an abomination. But some of the fever’s survivors are rumored to possess more than just scars—they are believed to have mysterious and powerful gifts, and though their identities remain secret, they have come to be called the Young Elites.

Teren Santoro works for the king. As Leader of the Inquisition Axis, it is his job to seek out the Young Elites, to destroy them before they destroy the nation… Read more.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Plague recounted
  • Physical injuries, including eyeball trauma & loss of vision
  • Sex work
  • Self-harm
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Death of a father
  • Murder
  • Torture
  • Fire
Support Us at Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com

Heir of Fire by Sarah J Maas

Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

Celaena has survived deadly contests and shattering heartbreak-but at an unspeakable cost. Now, she must travel to a new land to confront her darkest truth . . . a truth about her heritage that could change her life-and her future-forever. Meanwhile, brutal and monstrous forces are gathering on the horizon, intent on enslaving her world. Will Celaena find the strength to not only fight her inner demons, but to take on the evil that is about to be unleashed?

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Depression
  • Trauma & nightmares
  • Suicidal ideation
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Blood & gore depiction
  • Physical injury
  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of a friend
  • Death of an mother & father recounted
  • Murder & attempted murder
  • Knife violence & stabbing
  • Torture
  • Home invasion
  • War themes
Support Us at Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com

Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

In a land without magic, where the king rules with an iron hand, an assassin is summoned to the castle. She comes not to kill the king, but to win her freedom. If she defeats twenty-three killers, thieves, and warriors in a competition, she is released from prison to serve as the king’s champion. Her name is Celaena Sardothien.

The Crown Prince will provoke her. The Captain of the Guard will protect her. But something evil dwells in the castle of glass—and it’s there to kill. When her competitors start dying one by one, Celaena’s fight for freedom becomes a fight for survival, and a desperate quest to root out the evil before it destroys her world.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Slavery
  • Misogyny
  • Classism
  • Slut shaming
  • Sexual harassment
  • Rape mentioned
  • Forced arranged marriage mentioned
  • Trauma & nightmares
  • Attempted suicide recounted
  • Suicidal ideation
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Substance addiction
  • Nonconsensual drugging
  • Recreational drug abuse
  • Blood & gore depiction
  • Physical injury
  • Emesis
  • Dead bodies
  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of a boyfriend recounted
  • Death of an mother & father recounted
  • Murder & attempted murder
  • Knife violence
  • Poisoning
  • Torture
  • Whipping recounted
  • Imprisonment
  • Death by a fall
  • War & colonialism themes
  • Animal death & hunting mentioned
Support Us at Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com