Book picks similar to
Frankie by Shivaun Plozza


young-adult
contemporary
family
mystery

Girl Defective


Simmone Howell - 2013
    It’s about ten-year-old Super Agent Gully and his case of a lifetime. And about beautiful, reckless, sharp-as-knives Nancy. It’s about tragi-hot Luke, and just-plain-tragic Mia Casey. It’s about the dark underbelly of a curious neighborhood. It’s about summer, and weirdness, and mystery, and music. And it's about life and death and grief and romance. All the good stuff.

Then I Met My Sister


Christine Hurley Deriso - 2011
    Since birth, I've known that everyone loved Shannon. She was perfect--beautiful, smart, talented. And me? Not so much. My parents always expected me to live up to her greatness. But I could never measure up to her, so why even try?This summer, I've started reading the journal Shannon kept just before she died . . . and suddenly nothing is what I thought it was. The more secrets I learn about Shannon and our family, the more everything changes. And as it turns out, facing the truth is no cakewalk, either.

Brother, Brother


Clay Carmichael - 2013
    After his grandmother's death, seventeen-year-old Brother sets out, with the abandoned son of a friend, on a 200-mile trip to North Carolina's Outer Banks to find his twin brother, of whose existence he just learned.Part coming-of-age story, part love story, this is a book about finding out that who you are and where you come from aren't necessarily the same thing.

The Year I Turned Sixteen


Diane Schwemm - 2010
    Rose, the oldest, feels like she has the most responsibility when her father dies, and yearns to be true to herself. Daisy wants to break free from her family, but trouble arises when she falls for a bad boy. Laurel struggles with the loss of a close relative and finds herself drawn to a boy who may actually understand. And Lily, the youngest sister, feels like nothing could be more difficult than actually being herself. These four books in one special bind-up make for a great value—and an even better read.

The Sweetness of Salt


Cecilia Galante - 2010
    But when her older sister, Sophie, shows up at the graduation determined to reveal some long buried secrets, Julia's carefully constructed plans come to a halt. Instead of the summer she had painstakingly laid out, Julia follows Sophie back to Vermont, where Sophie is opening a bakery--and struggling with some secrets of her own. What follows is a summer of revelations--some heartwarming, some heartbreaking, and all slowly pointing Julia toward a new understanding of both herself and of the sister she never really knew.

Girl, Aloud: The Teensy Talent of a Reluctant Rock Chick


Emily Gale - 2009
    He plans on selling her soul to the Devil - or at any rate to Simon Cowell when she finds herself pushed into an X-Factor audition. Kass could just say no, but her dad's manic-depressive mood swings are a constant worry and he has her in an emotional half-Nelson. Just when things couldn't get worse, Kass falls for a gorgeous older boy, also named Cass. She's amazed when he appears to like her, but it turns out this boy, is her best friend's long-term crush. What's a girl to do? Everything Kass thought she understood starts to fall apart and the only person she can turn to ...grumpy Simon Cowell (literally in her dreams). She might not be able to sing her way out of a paper bag, but Kass discovers that she isn't a choker when it comes to sorting out real life.Shortlisted for the Lincolnshire Young People's Book AwardLonglisted for the Waterstones Children's Book PrizeU.S. edition = Girl Out Loud / Scholastic

What's Broken Between Us


Alexis Bass - 2015
    Today, he's coming home from prison.Amanda's been the one living with the fallout, made worse by her brother's recent unapologetic TV interview. People think he's a monster. Still, she loves him. It's her dark secret until she starts getting close to Henry again--whose sister is paralyzed from the accident. A year and a half ago, her brother destroyed his life. Now Amanda has to decide if she'll let his choice destroy hers.

Emily's Dress and Other Missing Things


Kathryn Burak - 2012
    But when Emily Dickinson's dress goes missing from the Amherst museum, she knows exactly where it is: in her closet.As Claire and her student teacher, Tate, attempt to figure out what do to about the dress, they begin to uncover the truth behind Richy's disappearing act. Following a trail of clues across state lines, Claire and Tate attempt to find the person that Claire knows in her gut is responsible for his disappearance.

Imperfect Spiral


Debbie Levy - 2013
    Immediately Danielle is caught up in the machinery of tragedy: police investigations, neighborhood squabbling, and, when the driver of the car that struck Humphrey turns out to be an undocumented alien, outsiders use the accident to further a politically charged immigration debate. Wanting only to mourn Humphrey, the sweet kid she had a surprisingly strong friendship with, Danielle tries to avoid the world around her. Through a new relationship with Justin, a boy she meets at the park, she begins to work through her grief, but as details of the accident emerge, much is not as it seems. It's time for Danielle to face reality, but when the truth brings so much pain, can she find a way to do right by Humphrey's memory and forgive herself for his death?“. . . a heartfelt drama that touches on the themes of friendship, love, fear, and death. . . . Readers will find a relevant and inspiring story. . . .” —ALAN (Assembly on Literature for Adolescents of the NCTE) Picks“Levy’s unflinching look at pain is masterful. The narrative fluidly moves from lighter moments with Humphrey to the darkness of grief, avoiding false sentimentality.” —Kirkus Reviews“The discussion of. . . real issues is deftly woven into the story, never overshadowing the protagonist’s journey toward healing. . . . This book is sure to be a hit among teens seeking a substantive drama.”–School Library Journal“. . . a story of love and loss deepened by the protagonist’s inspiring development from someone afraid of conflict into someone who can stand up for what she believes is right.” –The Horn Book

This Side of Salvation


Jeri Smith-Ready - 2014
    When his older brother was killed, David got angry. As in, fist-meets-someone-else’s-face furious. But his parents? They got religious. David’s still figuring out his relationship with a higher power, but there’s one thing he does know for sure: The closer he gets to new-girl Bailey, the better, brighter, happier, more he feels.Then his parents start cutting all their worldly ties to prepare for the Rush, the divine moment when the faithful will be whisked off to Heaven…and they want David to do the same. David’s torn. There’s a big difference between living in the moment and giving up his best friend, varsity baseball, and Bailey—especially Bailey—in hope of salvation.But when he comes home late from prom, and late for the Rush, to find that his parents have vanished, David is in more trouble than he ever could have imagined...

The Absolute Value of -1


Steve Brezenoff - 2010
    Readers will identify with Lily, Noah, and Simon as they try to reconcile their longing for connection with their need to break free.”—Sara Zarr, National Book Award Nominee and author of Once Was Lost.The absolute value of any number, positive or negative, is its distance from zero: |-1| = 1Noah, Lily, and Simon have been a trio forever. But as they enter high school, their relationships shift and their world starts to fall apart. Privately, each is dealing with a family crisis—divorce, abuse, and a parent's illness. Yet as they try to escape the pain and reach out for the connections they once counted on, they slip—like soap in a shower. Noah’s got it bad for Lily, but he knows too well Lily sees only Simon. Simon is indifferent, suddenly inscrutable to his friends. All stand alone in their heartache and grief.In his luminous YA novel, Steve Brezenoff explores the changing value of relationships as the characters realize that the distances between them are far greater than they knew.

The Universal Laws of Marco


Carmen Rodrigues - 2019
    This was his first spark.And since then, whenever he’s thought about that moment, he’s traveled through a wormhole—of sorts—to relive those brief seconds when time sped up (or, rather, his view of time distorted) and he kissed her.And then, at the end of that year, she disappeared, leaving in that way that people sometimes leave—alive and well and somewhere out there but gone, nonetheless. She never even said why.And now in their senior year, Sally unexpectedly returns and Marco is shaken. Still, he holds tightly to his carefully choreographed life. A life that is full of reasons why first sparks don’t matter:Reason 1: He has a girlfriend. Her name is Erika Richards.Reason 2: He’s leaving on a full scholarship to college.Reason 3: He’s busy with his friends and making money to help support his family.But as Marco navigates the final days of high school, he learns that leaving home is never easy and a first spark is hard to ignore.

On the Jellicoe Road


Melina Marchetta - 2006
    I tell him stories. About the Jellicoe School and the Townies and the Cadets from a school in Sydney. I tell him about the war between us for territory. And I tell him about Hannah, who lives in the unfinished house by the river. Hannah, who is too young to be hiding away from the world. Hannah, who found me on the Jellicoe Road six years ago.Taylor is leader of the boarders at the Jellicoe School. She has to keep the upper hand in the territory wars and deal with Jonah Griggs—the enigmatic leader of the cadets, and someone she thought she would never see again.And now Hannah, the person Taylor had come to rely on, has disappeared. Taylor's only clue is a manuscript about five kids who lived in Jellicoe eighteen years ago. She needs to find out more, but this means confronting her own story, making sense of her strange, recurring dream, and finding her mother—who abandoned her on the Jellicoe Road.The moving, joyous and brilliantly compelling new novel from the best-selling, multi-award-winning author of Looking for Alibrandi and Saving Francesca.

Everything is Changed


Nova Weetman - 2016
    As guilt closes in on Jake, he becomes increasingly determined to confess to the police. But Alex just wants to move on with life. He's got a cool new girlfriend, fancy new house and posh new school, and doesn't want his future to be ruined by a mistake in his past. Told backwards in alternating viewpoints, this gritty novel takes us through the wreckage of a broken friendship, back to the moment when everything changed.

Songs for a Teenage Nomad


Kim Culbertson - 2007
    Fearful of putting down roots anywhere, but armed with her song journal, she moves to her own sound track through a world that bounces her between the school drama crowd, a mysterious loner, and an unlikely boy who will become her first love. But it's the troubling truth she uncovers about her father that forces Calle to face the toughest choice of her young life.