320C: Teen Girl Befriends Contessa On The French Riviera

I remember an excerpt of a novel for teens, reprinted in some English literature compilation under what I think was the title “The Contessa and Me” but that was not the title of the book it came from. A teen is at a hotel that her possibly British or American parents run on the French Riviera. She befriends a Contessa there. There is a scene where she cleans up after a party where I believe the Contessa had too much champagne to drink. It’s kind of a coming of age story. The excerpt was one part of the book which I think was divided into three parts total or possibly was a series of short stories on the same characters. At one time I read the other two parts somehow but don’t recall the overall name or author.

318R: Coming of Age World War Romance

Hello, I am looking for a book I read when I was in high school. So this would’ve been around the year 2000 to 2004. It was a coming-of-age tale of a young girl in either World War One or probably World War II. There was romance in it. I remember a very particular scene in which she was at a dance with the G.I. and she was collecting orange peels to make marmalade and they flew out of her dress. I also remember that she ended up with a character at the end who had a beard. Maybe his name was Alex? There may have been a lighthouse involved? Thanks for your help This has been driving me crazy! Not sure if it takes place in the US or in the UK.

316J: Japanese Young Adult Story of Unrequited Love

A young Japanese woman/girl falls in love with an older man/one who is beyond her social class. She writes all her feelings as journal entries/poems (maybe in letters to him?). Her love is unrequited but she remains strong in her sense of self as well as in her love for him. The plot reminds me very much of Snow Country, but I do not think it is the same book, since the book I am looking for was in my VERY conservative Christian elementary/high school library, in the young adult fiction section. The illustration on the cover is in a traditional Japanese style, as were the minimal illustrations throughout. The book is short (about 100 pages, give or take) and small in size. Snow drops and/or cherry blossoms were a trope throughout the book and may have been part of the title and/or cover illustration.

315N: Teen fiction book, bullying, blackmail and revenge!

Hi, I am trying to find an older children/teen fiction book probably published in the 90’s. It is about a group of classmates being blackmailed by the caretaker’s son, who knows each of their secrets. They group together to seek revenge and get their secrets back. There is an Asian or Indian girl, who cheated on a test, a girl with a white streak in her hair from a scar, the bully refers to her as ‘bird crap’ and I think her name was Rosa? A boy called Liam, nicknamed ‘mouse’ and the son of a famous footballer player, who is new to the school. The caretaker’s son loves battenburg cake, which he calls ‘window cake’. They all get their secrets back from him in the end, and confront him, meet his mother, etc. I have hunted the internet, but can’t find any sign of it!

313H: Monkey Brain Time Travel (Solved)

I’m haunted by a (probably YA) time travel book I read in the mid 70s. I believe it takes place in England, where relatives are visiting (maybe from America?) their professor/scientist Uncle (?) who has produced a time travel potion. I think one of its main ingredients is monkey brains, but I’m not 100% sure. The serum allows the imbiber to travel back to Middle Age Britain, not sure if it’s as an active participant or as a fly-on-the-wall. Whichever character it is that starts taking trips, soon gets caught up in the people and events of that past. He becomes addicted to it. The danger is that his body stays more-or-less in present day geographically, so when he comes out of the trip he may be standing in the middle of a super highway or some such that wasn’t there hundreds of years ago. I don’t remember the resolution. I just remember loving the imagery and concept. Anybody?

312Y: Teens Runaway into the Woods

This is a dark teen novel. I read it in about 2007 and I think it was recently published. I believe the cover of the book was white (kind of a woodsy / snowy feel) with the title in black text.

The story was a very sad one.Three teens (the older two were a couple and there was a younger boy, who was the narrator) ran away and were homeless, living for at least part of the book in the woods (in some makeshift space — I believe an old van). They were cold and hungry and the girl got sick first. I believe she had sores or something on her body. In one tragic scene in particular, she’s asking the older boy (her boyfriend) to have sex with her and the narrator says the older boy did it because he really loved her. Eventually, of course, the girl died and I believe the older boy died as well a little later on.

As I said the younger boy was the narrator and there was a lot of dialect used. Apostrophes and such (“you want somethin’?”) which added a lot of character to the narration.

I believe it got good reviews / accolades, but was very sad and dark. You really saw how kids could fall through the cracks in the system and how terrible it was for kids trying to make their own way without assets or support.

311Z:Octopus For Dinner

I read a book when I was a kid 1993, the book felt modern) that was about a girl who was invited to sleepover at her friends house for the first time. Main girl is white and the friend is black. She’s very anxious, one thing she worries about is they will serve something weird for dinner like an octopus. She goes and they have a good time, in one part they run through cornfields at the friends house. It’s definitely geared towards 7-12 age group, some illustrations. I’ve been searching for years!!