8th Grade

Memento Nora

Author: 
Angie Smibert

 Reading Level: Grades 8 and up

 "I'm about to forget everything I'm going to tell you." So begins the therapeutic statement of Nora James, age 15. Nora and her two friends Micah and Winter, are being held at the Detention Center for Therapeutic Forgetting. In a world filled with ramdom bombings, the authorities find that the people usually want to take the pill that will make them forget all the ugliness. Nora and her friend will be forced to take The Big Pill that will erase all memory of their friendship and everything that happened.

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Slog's Dad

Author: 
David Almond
Illustrator: 
Dave McKean

Reading Level: Grades 6 - 8

When Slog's father dies following a grueling illness involving many amputations, the boy becomes convinced that his dad has returned from the dead. Slog's friend, who tells us this story, is sympathetic to Slog but doubtful. This unconventional story, told partly with mixed-media illustrations, is simultaneously dark but hopeful, as it explores the pain of loss.

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Grave Robber's Secret

Author: 
Anna Myers

 Reading Level: Grades 5-9

 Robby Hare's father decides that he will rob graves and sell the corpses to the medical school. His father forces Robby to help him with his grisly new venture. Although sickened by the task, Robby becomes fascinated with the study of medicine itself and one doctor takes an interest in the bright boy. Life changes when Mr. Burke and his daughter, Martha, come to live in the Hare family boardinghouse. Robby finds a friend in Martha and does not have to rob graves, but something much worse may be taking place in his home.

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Forgotten

Author: 
Cat Patrick

Reading Level: Ages 12 and up

Every night, 16-year-old London Lane's memory is erased. She needs her notebook and notes to enable her to prepare for the coming day. While she can't remember the past, she can "remember" the future. Once the events actually happen, they, too, are erased. Only her mom and her best friend know of her strange condition. London meets and begins to date the gorgeous new boy in school, but she's disturbed that she has no future memories of him. Then strange dreams begin to surface. Are they about the future or the past?

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Captured

Author: 
Maggie L. Wood

Reading Level: Grade 6-8

It has always been just Willow and her Nana. 15-year-old Willow has grown up listening to her grandmother's fairy tales about a magical realm called Mistolear. Willow used to enjoy the stories but as her grandmother slips further and further into Alzheimer's, hearing Nana talk of a fantasy world as if IT is the reality hurts.

One of her grandmother's fantasies was the "summoning spell" game where you could touch a special crystal and travel to another world. Willow had believed in the game with all her heart...when she was seven.

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Miles from Ordinary

Author: 
Carol Lynch Williams

Reading Level: Grade 6-8

This book is a creepy blend of realistic fiction and horror. Teenager Lacey lives alone with her mentally ill mother. Despite her situation, she struggles to have a normal life, even managing to get a job at the local library. However, the novel's intentional uncertainty creates a foreboding mood. At times the reader even wonders if the voice guiding Lacey's mother really exists or if it is due to her illness. All becomes clear by the novel's end, when Lacey realizes just how alone she really is.

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