Winter break boredom? Pick up a good book

Commentary by Hollyann Gardner
Times-News correspondent

   As schools are closed for the holiday season and any thoughts of algebra or biology are pushed aside, we teens need something to entertain ourselves. Yes, there’s always Netflix or YouTube, but what about a good book? Here are five entertaining novels that you can pick up during winter break.
1. “Things Not Seen,” by Andrew Clements. This book follows 15-year-old Bobby Phillips, who wakes up one morning to find out he is completely invisible. He, his physicist father and his new blind friend Alicia then try to conquer this strange event and figure out the cause of this phenomenon. Because this book is an amazing mix of sci-fi, mystery, and humor, as well as the fact that it takes place during a cold Chicago winter, it is a perfect fireside read.
2. “Cinder,” by Marissa Meyer. The first in a series of four books of the same nature, “Cinder” is the sci-fi retelling of the Brothers Grimm’a classic fairy tale “Cinderella.” In this story, instead of a maid working for her own family, Cinder is a second-class citizen working as a mechanic in a dystopian version of Beijing, China. There is a terrible plague sweeping across the world, and Cinder finds herself caught in the midst of the struggle. Oh, and we can’t forget the dashing Prince Kai, whom Cinder the half-robot could never see herself with … right? This novel is perfect for any fan of fairy tales or science fiction to get themselves caught up in.
   3. “Matched,” by Ally Condie. Exciting and mysterious from beginning to end, “Matched” is the story of a girl named Cassia who lives in a dystopian universe — where things are just a little bit different from our day and age. Your future husband/wife is determined for you, as well as other things, such as your diet and even your date of death. When a glitch causes Cassia to be “Matched” with two different boys, one of which is her best friend Xander and the other a town outcast named Ky, suspense and mystery follow. This book may have you on the edge of your seat, but the element of poetry and song that is laced throughout the pages makes it an intriguingly peaceful read.
4. “Legend,” by Marie Lu. When a wanted criminal boy and a girl who is a local celebrity for her intelligence collide, what happens? “Legend” follows two teenagers named Day and June, who have no reason to ever cross paths, until Day becomes the prime suspect for the murder of June’s older brother, Metias. What will come about from these events? Will June get revenge on Day? Is Day going to succeed in trying to protect his quickly ailing family while trying to keep his reputation in line? Read the book to find out.
5. “The Selection,” by Kiera Cass. My personal favorite out of this list, “The Selection” is perfect if you are both a Disney fan and a Hunger Games fan (like me). This book is about teenage girl America Singer, and what comes about when she is chosen for a nationwide event: The Selection. This long and demanding game ends in the handsome Prince Maxon choosing a bride out of the 35 girls who are “selected.” Follow America as she makes friends, enemies and of course tries to receive approval from the Prince, as well as the King and Queen.

Hollyann Gardner is a freshman home-schooler and a Teens & Twenties writer.

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