Half a King by Joe Abercrombie

Betrayed by his family and left for dead, Prince Yarvi, reluctant heir to a divided kingdom, has vowed to reclaim a throne he never wanted.

But first he must survive cruelty, chains and the bitter waters of the Shattered Sea itself – all with only one good hand. Born a weakling in the eyes of a hard, cold world, he cannot grip a shield or swing an axe, so he has sharpened his mind to a deadly edge. Gathering a strange fellowship of the outcast, he finds they can help him more than any noble could. Even so, Yarvi’s path may end as it began – in twists, traps and tragedy…

Layla’s mind goes a million miles a minute, so does her mouth – unfortunately her better judgement can take a while to catch up! Although she believes she was justified for doing what she did, a suspension certainly isn’t the way she would have wished to begin her time at her fancy new high school. Despite the setback, Layla’s determined to show everyone that she does deserve her scholarship and sets her sights on winning a big invention competition. But where to begin? Looking outside and in, Layla will need to come to terms with who she is and who she wants to be if she has any chance of succeeding.

Trigger Warnings

  • Ableism (central theme), internalised ableism, ableist language and ableist slurs
  • Arranged marriage
  • Bullying
  • Child abuse recounted
  • Death of a brother
  • Death of a father
  • Death of a husband
  • Murder
  • War themes

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The Lines We Cross by Randa Abdel-Fattah

This title is also known as When Michael Met Mina.

Michael likes to hang out with his friends and play with the latest graphic design software. His parents drag him to rallies held by their anti-immigrant group, which rails against the tide of refugees flooding the country. And it all makes sense to Michael.

Until Mina, a beautiful girl from the other side of the protest lines, shows up at his school, and turns out to be funny, smart — and a Muslim refugee from Afghanistan. Suddenly, his parents’ politics seem much more complicated.

Mina has had a long and dangerous journey fleeing her besieged home in Afghanistan, and now faces a frigid reception at her new prep school, where she is on scholarship. As tensions rise, lines are drawn. Michael has to decide where he stands. Mina has to protect herself and her family. Both have to choose what they want their world to look like. 

Trigger Warnings

  • Death of a brother
  • Death of a father
  • Islamophobia
  • Racism

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The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and once girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister’s place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before—and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weight survival against humanity and life against love.

Trigger Warnings

  • Ableism & ableist language
  • Alcohol consumption and alcohol abuse
  • Alcoholism
  • Animal death (graphic & repeated), hunting, and animal illness mentioned
  • Animal dead bodies and graphic description of skinning & butchering
  • Animal attack and death from animal attack (including death from a wasp attack and a graphic scene of a child being eaten alive by a wolf)
  • Attempted murder of a pet cat recounted
  • Attempted suicide and self-sacrifice ideation
  • Avalanche mentioned
  • Blood and gore depiction (graphic)
  • Cannibalism recounted & discussed
  • Classism
  • Dead bodies (graphic, multiple)
  • Death from exposure mentioned
  • Death of a child (op, multiple)
  • Death of a father recounted
  • Death of a friend (op)
  • Death of a husband recounted
  • Drugging w/o consent
  • Emesis (graphic, multiple op scenes)
  • Explosions (op & recounted)
  • Fire
  • Graphic physical injuries (including burns & loss of hearing) and illness
  • Grief depiction
  • Hallucinations
  • Hostage situation
  • Knife violence and stabbing
  • Non-consensual medical treatment and procedures (including amputation)
  • Murder and attempted murder
  • Needles
  • Poisoning
  • Police brutality mentioned
  • Poverty themes
  • Rebellion themes
  • Scars discussed
  • Serious illness of a loved one
  • Starvation & dehydration depiction (central theme) and death from starvation & dehydration mentioned
  • Strangulation
  • Whipping mentioned

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