A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah

A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah

This is how wars are fought now: by children, hopped-up on drugs and wielding AK-47s. Children have become soldiers of choice. In the more than fifty conflicts going on worldwide, it is estimated that there are some 300,000 child soldiers. Ishmael Beah used to be one of them.

What is war like through the eyes of a child soldier? How does one become a killer? How does one stop? Child soldiers have been profiled by journalists, and novelists have struggled to imagine their lives. But until now, there has not been a first-person account from someone who came through this hell and survived… Read more.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Child abuse
  • Sexual assault mentioned
  • Substance addiction
  • Recreational drug use & abuse
  • Blood & physical injury depiction
  • Hospital
  • Needles
  • Emesis
  • Death of a parent
  • Murder
  • Gun violence
  • Immolation
  • Torture
  • Vivisepulture (being buried alive)
  • Drowning mentioned
  • Kidnapping
  • War & rebellion themes, including child soldiers (themes)
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Viral Airwaves by Claudie Arseneault

Viral Airwaves by Claudie Arseneault

Henry Schmitt wants nothing more than a quiet life and a daily ration of instant noodles. At least until he learns the terrible secret that drove his father away—the Plague that killed his mother and ravaged his country was created by those now in power. He has one chance to help expose the conspiracy: a ragtag band of rebels needs a pilot for their hot air balloon, where they can launch a broadcast revealing the truth. If Henry accepts, he can experience his dream of flight. But he would have to leave his safe, tranquil life behind … and bring the wrath of a corrupt government upon his head.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Homomisia
  • Suicide
  • Plague
  • Murder
  • Torture
  • Gun violence
  • Explosion
  • Police brutality
  • War & rebellion themes
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The Crown by Kiera Cass

The Crown by Kiera Cass

When Eadlyn became the first princess of Illéa to hold her own Selection, she didn’t think she would fall in love with any of her thirty-five suitors. She spent the first few weeks of the competition counting down the days until she could send them all home. But as events at the palace force Eadlyn even further into the spotlight, she realizes that she might not be content remaining alone.

Eadlyn still isn’t sure she’ll find the fairytale ending her parents did twenty years ago. But sometimes the heart has a way of surprising you…and soon Eadlyn must make a choice that feels more impossible—and more important—than she ever imagined.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Alcohol consumption
  • Rebellion
  • Riots
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The One by Kiera Cass

The One by Kiera Cass

The Selection began with thirty-five girls. Now with the group narrowed down to the six Elite, the competition to win Prince Maxon’s heart is fiercer than ever—and America is still struggling to decide where her heart truly lies. Is it with Maxon, who could make her life a fairy tale? Or with her first love, Aspen?

America is desperate for more time. But the rest of the Elite know exactly what they want—and America’s chance to choose is about to slip away.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Murder
  • Gun violence
  • Physical assault
  • War & rebellion themes
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Rebel by Marie Lu

Rebel by Marie Lu

Eden Wing has been living in his brother’s shadow for years. Even though he’s a top student at his academy in Antarctica, and a brilliant inventor, most people know him only as Daniel Wing’s little brother.

A decade ago, Daniel was known as Day, the boy from the streets who led a revolution that saved the Republic of America. But Day is no longer the same young man who was once a national hero. These days he’d rather hide out from & leave his past behind. All that matters to him now is keeping Eden safe―even if that also means giving up June, the great love of Daniel’s life.

Eden soon finds himself drawn so far into Ross City’s dark side, even his legendary brother can’t save him. At least not on his own . . .

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Murder
  • Gun violence
  • Knife violence & stabbing
  • Kidnapping
  • War & rebellion themes
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The Midnight Star by Marie Lu

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu

Adelina Amouteru is done suffering. She’s turned her back on those who have betrayed her and achieved the ultimate revenge: victory. Her reign as the White Wolf has been a triumphant one, but with each conquest her cruelty only grows. The darkness within her has begun to spiral out of control, threatening to destroy all she’s gained.

When a new danger appears, Adelina’s forced to revisit old wounds, putting not only herself at risk, but every Elite. In order to preserve her empire, Adelina and her Roses must join the Daggers on a perilous quest—though this uneasy alliance may prove to be the real danger.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Child sex work
  • Hallucinations & delusions
  • Murder & attempted murder
  • Torture
  • Drowning
  • Forced conscription
  • War & rebellion themes
  • Animal death
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The Rose Society by Marie Lu

The Rose Society by Marie Lu

Adelina Amouteru’s heart has suffered at the hands of both family and friends, turning her down the bitter path of revenge. Now known and feared as the White Wolf, she flees Kenettra with her sister to find other Young Elites in the hopes of building her own army of allies. Her goal: to strike down the Inquisition Axis, the white-cloaked soldiers who nearly killed her.

But Adelina is no heroine. Her powers, fed only by fear and hate, have started to grow beyond her control. She does not trust her newfound Elite friends. Teren Santoro, leader of the Inquisition, wants her dead. And her former friends, Raffaele and the Dagger Society, want to stop her thirst for vengeance. Adelina struggles to cling to the good within her. But how can someone be good when her very existence depends on darkness?

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Slavery
  • Rape
  • Child sex slavery
  • Child abuse recounted
  • Hallucinations
  • Murder recounted
  • Knife violence & stabbing
  • Torture
  • Shipwreck
  • War & rebellion themes
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Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Katniss Everdeen, girl on fire, has survived, even though her home has been destroyed. It is by design that Katniss was rescued from the arena in the cruel and haunting Quarter Quell, and it is by design that she has long been part of the revolution without knowing it. District 13 has come out of the shadows and is plotting to overthrow the Capitol. Everyone, it seems, has had a hand in the carefully laid plans—except Katniss.

The success of the rebellion hinges on Katniss’s willingness to be a pawn, to accept responsibility for countless lives, and to change the course of the future of Panem. To do this, she must put aside her feelings of anger and distrust. She must become the rebels’ Mockingjay—no matter what the personal cost. 

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Classism
  • Hallucinations & delusions
  • Substance addiction
  • Nonconsensual drugging
  • Blood & gore depiction
  • Physical injuries
  • Dead bodies
  • Hospital
  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of a child
  • Death of a sister
  • Death of a friend
  • Murder & attempted murder
  • Knife violence and stabbing
  • Explosions
  • Strangulation
  • Kidnapping & captivity
  • Building collapse
  • War & rebellion themes
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Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has won the Hunger Games. She and fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark are miraculously still alive. Katniss should be relieved, happy even. After all, she has returned to her family and her longtime friend, Gale. Yet nothing is the way Katniss wishes it to be. Gale holds her at an icy distance. Peeta has turned his back on her completely. And there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol—a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create.

Much to her shock, Katniss has fueled an unrest that she’s afraid she cannot stop. And what scares her even more is that she’s not entirely convinced she should try. As time draws near for Katniss and Peeta to visit the districts on the Capitol’s cruel Victory Tour, the stakes are higher than ever. If they can’t prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that they are lost in their love for each other, the consequences will be horrifying.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Classism
  • Forced sex work
  • Child abuse
  • Substance addiction
  • Trauma & nightmares
  • Alcohol consumption & abuse
  • Blood & gore depiction
  • Graphic physical injuries, including burns
  • Needles
  • Starvation & dehydration
  • Emesis (off-page)
  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of a child recounted
  • Death of a father & husband recounted
  • Death of a friend (on-page)
  • Murder & attempted murder
  • Knife violence and stabbing
  • Gun violence
  • Explosions
  • Drowning
  • Whipping mentioned
  • Blackmail
  • War & rebellion themes, including riots
  • Animal death
  • Hunting
  • Poverty themes
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Nancy Drew: The Palace of Wisdom by Kelly Thompson

Nancy Drew: The Palace of Wisdom by Kelly Thompson & illustrated by Jenn St. Onge

Nancy Drew is seventeen and good at everything… ESPECIALLY solving crimes. But her totally-in-control-and-obviously-running-perfectly-smooth-(but-not-really) life hits a snag when a mysterious message drags her back to the hometown she left behind. There she’ll have to find out which of her friends are still her friends, which are enemies, and who exactly is trying to kill her…and (hopefully) stop them before they succeed.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Racism mentioned
  • Suicide mentioned
  • Recreational drug use
  • Hospital
  • Death of a mother recounted
  • Murder
  • Gun violence
  • Kidnapping & hostage situation
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