Books are easy to use (no charging or downloading required) and will always be in vogue. For the age group that’s the most difficult to buy for, we’ve got reads for musical lovers, Hunger Games fans and DIY crafters.
The Tony Award-winning musical Dear Evan Hansen, which follows the eponymous teen’s struggle with social anxiety, has taken Broadway by storm. Now, the creators of the show offer another way for fans and newcomers alike to experience Evan’s story through Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel. Written in a light, breezy narration, the novel tells the story of how Evan, a teenage loner, takes his therapist’s advice and begins writing letters to himself each day in order to deal with his anxieties and insecurities. But when one of his private notes lands in the wrong hands, Evan accidentally becomes a social media sensation after the note resurfaces at the scene of a classmate’s suicide. Like the musical upon which it’s based, Dear Evan Hansen tackles serious themes—like isolation, mental health, friendship, love, community and the difficulty of telling the truth, even to yourself—in a sometimes serious, sometimes hilarious way that is sure to connect with today’s teens.
A WORTHY TRIBUTE
Suzanne Collins’ acclaimed Hunger Games series—perhaps one of the most popular and well-loved YA series of all time—is now available in a gift-ready new package. The Hunger Games: Special Edition Box Set celebrates the 10th anniversary of this action-packed series with new paperbacks that feature luxe foil covers and lots of great bonus material. Fans will relish the longest published interview with Collins to date, a conversation between Collins and the late author Walter Dean Myers, a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of the series and a timeline of Hunger Games-related events from 2008 to the present.
For crafty teens, there’s Australian embroidery expert Irem Yazici’s Tiny Stitches: Buttons, Badges, Patches, and Pins to Embroider. This guide lays out necessary materials and sewing techniques for needlework newbies, and there are plenty of illustrated examples and step-by-step instructions for projects like pins, patches and buttons. From outdoorsy scenes to cutesy snack items, young readers will be sure to find a pattern to love. Traceable templates allow the budding crafter to immediately deck out their best denim.
This article was originally published in the December 2018 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.