Y.A.R.C. - Young Adult Review Committee

Y.A.R.C. (yark), n. 1. Young Adult Review Committee. 2. A select group of local teens, reading and writing reviews of brand-spanking-new books. 3. Awesome.

Established in September of 2014, this program offers teens ages 13-18 the opportunity to read yet-to-be-published books, also known as ARCs (Advanced Reader Copies).  In exchange for this privilege, they write reviews for Village Books to use in print and social media, as well as for recommendations to our customers.  What better way to find out what teens are reading than to go straight to the source?  If you are interested in participating in the Y.A.R.C., please send inquiries to Claire McElroy-Chesson, our Kids' Programming Director at claire@villagebooks.com. (Claire's title role, Y.A.R.C., and various other children's programs are made possible through a $7500 grant awarded by James Patterson in July 2014.)


Recent Y.A.R.C. Recommendations

The World Within: A Novel of Emily Bronte
by Jane Eagland
Arthur Levine Books

The Bronte sisters, Charlotte, Emily, and Anne, are fairly well known in the world of literature. They were three sisters who never married, but each became published authors. The World Within is a historical fiction that gives insight into the treasured and mysterious mind of Emily Bronte, who wrote the famous book Wuthering Heights. This story starts with Emily as a child, and this child is adventurous, imaginative, and restrained by what was considered "proper." Personally, I think we can all find some sort of relation between ourselves and Emily; making for a compelling story simply because of the personal attachment we can form to its main character. As the story moves forward, we feel the emotional tug-of-war Emily has to play with her older sister, her father, and her other family members as they grow older and begin to make different choices. This story defines how change can be hard. This story defines struggle, and wanting to be someone society would tell you you can't. If you want a story that speaks directly to your trials, whatever they may be, pick up The World Within. ~Jackie J. age 15

by Alice Oseman
Harper Teen

Alice Oseman’s Solitaire is the unflinchingly honest story of self-described pessimist Tori Spring. It is a story about the difficulty of making and holding on to friends, it’s funny, heartbreaking, and touching. Tori has a habit of saying things she wishes she hadn’t. She is generally sarcastic and always cynical, going through life quite sure she will hate it, along with the people in it. The real beauty of Solitaire is how incredibly real its characters are. Their lives, struggles, and many flaws, are all spectacularly well written. Solitaire is everything I love about YA books.  ~Henry W. age 15

Wish Girl
Nikki Loftin  
Razorbill Pub.

Wish Girl is one of the best books I have ever read. It displays the relationship between children and their parents in a way that is deeply moving, and which any teen could easily identify with. The magic of Loftin's words will fill any spirit with joy and sorrow from the first page until long after reading the final words. ~Lydia W. age 16

Peter was born into the wrong family. They're loud, yelling extroverts while Peter wishes the world would be as quiet and still as he is.Annie is a wish girl, as in “Make-a-Wish”, finding art in everything while she battles cancer. Peter and Annie meet in the valley, a secluded place where they can be themselves and maybe find a touch of magic. With the backdrop of Texas Hill Country, Nikki Loftin paints a moving story about dealing with both physical and mental illness. Wish Girl is magical and deep, perfect for fans of The Fault in Out Stars. ~Emma W. 18

5 To 1
by Holly Bodger
Knopf Books for Young Readers

This book was a powerful masterpiece. Its scary in the way thats its possible to happen. The year is 2052, and India, girls are a national treasure. The leaders realized the error in their ways of thinking less of females. Boys now must compete in a series of trials to win a women’s hand in marriage. The objective? To make more girls. Sudasa, an obedient girl raised in privilege has turned seventeen, and must make her choice, to make her family proud. she can’t choose for love, she must choose a boy who will help her bear a female child. Kiran, a rebellious boy, abandoned by his mother at a young age, doesn’t want to compete in the tests. He and Sudasa both face extremely difficult choices.This haunted me, because its scary how some girls are treated in the world today. This book opened my eyes to the simple truth of what could happen if that continues. The prose in this is really strong. I could picture the scenery, and the descriptive language made reading this a heavenly experience. ~Fiona P. age 13

Fish in a Tree
by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
Nancy Paulsen Books

Lynda Mullaly Hunt’s vivid characters and deep emotional descriptions in her book Fish in a Tree will capture the heart of any reader. The story follows Ally, a sixth grade girl who suffers from dyslexia. Though she’s kept it hidden for years, her struggles in school are becoming more apparent. To make matters worse, a bully enters the picture. With the help of a new teacher, two friends, and her family, will Ally be able to triumph? This book definitely worth a read to find out. ~Christopher P. age 16