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Cover image of ReadWriteThink - Text Messages: Recommendations for Adolescent Readers!

ReadWriteThink - Text Messages: Recommendations for Adolescent Readers!

Text Messages is a monthly podcast providing families, educators, out-of-school practitioners, and tutors reading recommendations they can pass along to teen readers. Each episode will feature in-depth recommendations of titles that will engage and excite teen readers.

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The best episodes ranked using user listens.

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#weneeddiversebooks

Even if they are few in number, diverse books do exist. Tune in to hear about recently-published YA titles that celebrate diversity in a range of genres. There's something for every reader here: comic book superheroes, Civil Rights history, love stories, humorous essays, poetry, artwork, and stories of suspense.

5 Oct 2014

Rank #1

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Resilience Literature

In this episode, you'll hear about teens who are dealing with a range of obstacles and hardships. Odd as it may sound, some of the books are funny. Others are suspenseful page-turners. What they all have in common is a main character who finds him or herself in a terrible situation, but finds a way to respond with strength and hope.

17 Sep 2014

Rank #2

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Life After High School

Many teens enjoy reading up—choosing books where the main character is just a few years older than they are, and then reading in order to imagine what their life might become. Together the titles in this episode show teens the range of paths to adulthood and the struggles that are a natural part of the process.

10 Aug 2014

Rank #3

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Still Worth Reading

Given the current level of energy and enthusiasm for young adult literature, now is a good time to pause and look beyond current bestsellers to older, lesser-known titles: that is, young adult novels from the past that never grabbed the popular culture spotlight but are still worth reading.

3 Aug 2014

Rank #4

Most Popular Podcasts

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A Conversation with Walter Dean Myers

If there is anyone in the world of children's and young adult literature who could be described as a living legend, it's Walter Dean Myers. Tune in to hear how his own experiences as a reader have shaped his approach to storytelling, what he seeks to offer young people through his writing, and the thinking behind a select handful of his novels – books that incorporate concepts as varied as magical realism, the social contract, and oral histories with our nation's war veterans.

22 Jun 2014

Rank #5

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Talking about Text Complexity

In this episode, you'll hear about a variety of books that may deepen our thinking about complex texts, including collections of poems and works of historical fiction, graphic novels and informational texts, and novels built on interwoven storylines. Together they offer reading options for teens with diverse interests, tastes, and sensibilities.

30 May 2014

Rank #6

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A Conversation with Rita Williams-Garcia

It's rare to find historical fiction that weaves rich period detail into the lives of memorable and endearing characters, but Rita Williams-Garcia's middle-grade novels One Crazy Summer and P.S. Be Eleven do just that. Tune in to hear Rita explain how she drew on personal and historical contexts to develop her characters and tell their story. You'll also hear about her great love for her work and her commitment to spending as long as it takes to get the story right.

27 Apr 2014

Rank #7

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Exploring the Disability Experience

Books about teens who are living with disability highlight the courage and emotional strength that disabled people can summon. They also challenge us to reflect on how we treat disabled people in our own lives. Tune in to hear about young people who are coping with birth defects and cerebral palsy; autism, schizophrenia, and obsessive compulsive disorder; speech impediments and traumatic war injuries.

23 Feb 2014

Rank #8

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Teens and Trauma

Young adult literature about teens and trauma provides a window into mental illness and the toll it takes on young people. Stories of teens who are dealing with depression, anger, or the wish to die can be difficult to read, but they are important. They give voice to a particular kind of suffering, and they help us develop a deeper understanding of emotional pain. Just as important, they show us how people survive that pain and begin the process of healing. Tune in to hear about six new novels that focus on teens, trauma, and mental illness.

8 Nov 2013

Rank #9

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A Conversation with Kristin Cashore

Kristin Cashore is one of those rare authors whose books are deep and beautiful, and whose work helps readers gain perspective on their own lives. Tune in to hear about Kristin's process of writing Bitterblue, how music helps her with writing, and how she copes when writing gets hard.

3 Oct 2013

Rank #10