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Teen Tastemakers: May Picks


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Teens, Idea Exchange | May 2, 2018

It’s May – the month when we can really start enjoying spring and start to get ready for summer. If you’re looking for some new tunes, a great book to read in the sunshine, or something to watch inside during the inevitable rainstorms, we have you covered! Read on for some recommendations from your Teen Tastemakers:

READ (Gemma)

This May, as temperatures hopefully warm, here’s some novels with excellent romances to warm your heart.

Six of Crows A Darker Shade of Magic Carry On Graceling

  1. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

    Set in a fantasy world similar to Industrial Revolution era-Earth, this novel is about six criminals hoping to make it big with the heist of a lifetime. It’s a fantastic novel, with excellent worldbuilding and character development, but for now I’ll be focusing on the romances. There are three of note: between Kaz and Inej, who must work through their own traumas before they can cement their relationship, Jesper and Wylan, a sweet romance with a smooth build to realizing their feelings, and Nina and Matthias, who struggle to overcome their country’s prejudices against each other.

  2. A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

    Another fantasy novel, this one is set in a series of parallel worlds, some with magic and some without. There are a few romances sprinkled throughout the series, but the main one is between Kell, a magician who possesses the power to move throughout worlds, and Lila, a thief who is not what she seems. It’s a sweet and ‘slow-burn’ love story, interspersed throughout a captivating plot and setting.

  3. Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

    The premise of this novel is a little hard to explain. In a previous novel by the same author, the main character writes fanfiction of a book series similar to Harry Potter, and in Carry On, it’s a continuation of that established world. Still following? Well, this novel is centered on a romance between Simon, the so-called ‘chosen one’, and Baz, his roommate that he’s pretty sure is a vampire. Though the plot is a little lackluster, it manages to squeeze in an impressive amount of world-building, as well as a wholesome and satisfying romance with a lot of heart.

  4. Graceling by Kristin Cashore

    Graceling is a fantasy novel set in a world where people born with heterochromia-that is, two differently-coloured eyes-possess one extreme skill. The romance of this is set between Katsa, a girl Graced with killing, and Po, a prince Graced with fighting. Though the romance is a small part of the plot, it feels incredibly natural, simply a further progression of their friendship as they discover new things about themselves and each other.

Well, that’s a wrap! Check out these four novels and tell us what you thought.

LISTEN (Ethan)

April showers bring good music for the month of May. If you like classic songs then listen to Gimme Shelter by the Rolling Stones. This song was written about the war in Vietnam, race riots, and Charles Manson. Mick Jagger, the lead vocalist, sang of needing shelter from this “storm.” He was inspired by the war and it is one of my favorite songs!

If rock isn’t your taste then here are some other songs I recommend: Rocket Man by Elton John, another classic song that is a little more upbeat. Another song is Umbrella by Rihanna – it will make you want to dance.

WATCH (Charlotte)

Every week it seems like there’s another teen drama being released. And a lot of them aren’t that great. So, here’s a few lesser-known teen shows that you should check out on Netflix.

Everything Sucks!: I love throwbacks, especially to the 90s, so I was already predisposed to liking it. The show follows a 14 year old boy and his friends as they battle the first year of high school, romance, the theatre kids, and being in the AV club. It’s funny, sad, and a lot of fun, but unfortunately was canceled after one season.

The End Of The F***ing World: This show is darker, as it follows a British teenager who thinks he’s a psychopath and a girl he’s decided to kill as they go on a road trip. It’s weird, and sad, and funny. However, there is some mature subject matter.

American Vandal: I love mockumentaries, and this one is hilarious. It’s about a teen filmmaker as he makes a documentary trying to clear the name of the school troublemaker who’s been accused of spray painting obscenities on teachers’ cars. It accurately portrays teen life, and although it’s vulgar at moments, it’s still funny.


Do you have exceptional taste? Do you love books, movies, and music? Would you like to be involved with the library, gain valuable resume experience, AND earn volunteer hours? If you would like to become a Teen Tastemaker, join us at our next meeting! Contact Idea Exchange Preston (519) 653-3632 for more information.