April 1, 2016 Debuts

With her mother facing prison time for a violent political protest, seventeen-year-old Liberty Briscoe has no choice but to leave her Washington, DC, apartment and take a bus to Ebbottsville, Kentucky, to live with her granny. There she can at least finish high school and put some distance between herself and her mother—or her former mother, as she calls her.

But Ebbottsville isn’t the same as Liberty remembers, and it’s not just because the top of Tanner’s Peak has been blown away to mine for coal. Half the county is out of work, an awful lot of people in town seem to be sick, and the tap water is bright orange—the same water that officials claim is safe. And when Granny’s lingering cold turns out to be something much worse, Liberty wonders if somebody at the mine is hiding the truth about the water.

She starts to investigate and is soon plunged into a world of secrets, lies, threats, and danger. Her searches for answers and justice lead to even tougher questions—should she turn to violence and end up like her mother? Give up her quest for the sake of keeping the peace? Or keep fighting until the mine is shut down for good?


Elena Martinez has hidden her eidetic memory all her life—or so she thinks. When powerful tech giant Aether Corporation selects her for a top-secret project, she can’t say no. All she has to do is participate in a trip to the future to bring back data, and she’ll be set for life. Elena joins a team of four other teens with special skills, including Adam, a science prodigy with his own reason for being there. But when the time travelers arrive thirty years in the future, something goes wrong and they break the only rule they were given: do not look into their own fates.

Now they have twenty-four hours to get back to the present and find a way to stop a seemingly inevitable future from unfolding. With time running out and deadly secrets uncovered, Elena must use her eidetic memory, street smarts, and a growing trust in Adam to save her new friends and herself.

"Briggs crafts a tense tale of predestination and paranoia, fleshed out with a diverse cast and an intriguing premise. "
-- Publisher's Weekly

10:00 tonight at the water tower. Tell no one. —Chaos Club

When Max receives a mysterious invite from the untraceable, epic prank-pulling Chaos Club, he has to ask: why him? After all, he’s Mr. 2.5 GPA, Mr. No Social Life. He’s Just Max. And his favorite heist movies have taught him this situation calls for Rule #4: Be suspicious. But it’s also his one shot to leave Just Max in the dust…

Yeah, not so much. Max and four fellow students—who also received invites—are standing on the newly defaced water tower when campus security “catches” them. Definitely a setup. And this time, Max has had enough. It’s time for Rule #7: Always get payback.

Let the prank war begin.

Oceans 11 meets The Breakfast Club in this entertaining, fast-paced debut filled with pranks and cons that will keep readers on their toes, never sure who’s pulling the strings or what’s coming next.

My review: I LOVE EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS BOOK. I love it so much I have to write it in all-caps again: I LOVE THIS BOOK. It's funny and sweet and entertaining and SO MUCH FUN. Max is absolutely charming and hilarious as a narrator, and all the trouble he and his group of fellow outcast friends get into--and maybe don't always get out of--had me laughing from the first few pages all the way through the end. There are pranks and rivalries and good ideas and TERRIBLE ideas and friendships made and friendships broken and overbearing teachers and clueless parents and there are cows. IDK, man, just go with it.

Normally I hate it when books are described [THIS] meets [THAT] because it always feels like reaching, and what if somebody hates one of those things? But in this case the description of Ocean's 11 meets The Breakfast Club is completely accurate in the best possible way. At the risk of dating myself (and exposing my reading habits as those of a 12-year-old Canadian schoolboy in the '80s), DON'T GET CAUGHT reminds me (again, in the best way!) of a more mature cousin to Gordon Korman's old MacDonald Hall books, full of hijinks and hilarity, but also friendship and school troubles and the fundamental frustrations of being a teenager in an adult world.

I read an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review, and my honest review is that I have been counting down the days until I can have the finished copy of this book in hands so I can read it again. 


Kaycee Jean McCoy has lived her entire life in Sunshine, Tennessee. Sweet tea flows through her veins and “yes ma’am” is ingrained in her DNA. In Sunshine, going to church is basically mandatory, and gay had better be your mood and not your sexual orientation. Kaycee may not agree with the town’s socially accepted bigotry, but she’d rather fit in—even if it means letting gross Dave Bradford kiss her on occasion—than make waves.

That is, until the beautiful, sexy, impossibly cool Bren Dawson moves into town. Kaycee is swept up in a whirlwind of exciting new emotions and lets her guard down. One night under a fat country moon, Kaycee’s best friend catches them kissing, and Kaycee’s whole world goes to hell in a handbasket. What is she willing to risk for the sake of love? And what will she risk for acceptance?


When her best friend's house is threatened with foreclosure, young Annie Jenkins is full of ideas to save the home: selling her appendix on eBay, winning the lottery, facing down the bankers . . . anything to keep Jason from moving. But Jason's out-of-work dad blows up at the smallest things, and he’s not very happy with Annie’s interventions, which always seem to get them into more trouble.

But when Annie tracks a lost treasure to Jason's backyard, she's sure the booty will be enough to save Jason’s family. Pirate treasure in the Midwest seems far-fetched, even to Annie, but it could be the answer to all their problems. Now all she has to do is convince Jason. As the two hunt for answers and the pressure gets to Jason and his family, Annie discovers that the best-laid plans aren’t always enough and there are worse things than moving away.