As a writer for young people I love to read what is being written, especially by home grown authors. Sometimes I am drawn to the books by their topics. Sometimes they jump off the shelf at me, for whatever reason, as these two did below.

The first is Free as a Bird by Gina McMurchy-Barber. Set in the 1970s and 80s, it is narrated by a mentally handicapped young person about her bleak time at Woodlands School (a real institution in BC) and her eventual journey to living on her own. It is at times painful, at times bittersweet, at all times believable.

Three Little Words by Sarah H. Harvey is about a boy’s search for his lost half-brother and, in doing so, finds about his birth family, his grandmother, mental illness and childhood trauma. Strong lively characters make the book.

British Columbia has some fantastic YA writers. Explore these and the many other books they have given us.