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Lake Oswego Public Library

Grit Lit

My Chemical Mountain by Corina Vacco

Tough Streets, Tough Schools, Tough Problems

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After by Amy Efaw
Top student and star athlete Devon is accused of murder after she leaves her baby in the trash to die.

All the Right Stuff by Walter Dean Myers
After his absentee father is killed in a shooting, Paul volunteers at a Harlem soup kitchen. (Also my Myers: Lockdown, Checkmate; Kick; Riot; Dope Stick)

All You Never Wanted by Adele Griffen

Thea's jealousy of her older sister prompts self-destructive acts that affect them both.

Angry Young Man by Chris Lynch
Robert tries to help his half-brother Xan when Xan becomes involved with protesters and anarchists. (Also by Lynch: Prime Evil; Hothouse; Cyberia; The Big Game of Everything; Excusable)

Ball Don’t Lie by Matt de la Pena
Sticky, a foster child, hopes to be a pro basketball player, but many dangers threaten to derail him.

Beneath a Meth Moon by Jacqueline Woodson
A young girl uses crystal meth to escape the pain of losing her mother and grandmother in Hurricane Katrina, and then struggles to recover.

Black and White by Paul Volponi
Two star high school basketball players, one black and one white, experience the justice system differently after committing a crime together and getting caught.

Bitter End by Jennifer Brown
When Alex starts dating Cole, her tow closest friends increasingly mistrust him.

Boy 21 by Mathew Quick
Finley, the only white player on his high school's basketball team, is asked to mentor a troubled African American transfer student.

Brooklyn Burning by Steven Brezenoff
Kid loves Felix, a junkie who disappears, leaving Kid the prime suspect in an arson investigation.

Burnout by Adrienne Vrettos
Just months out of rehab, Nan wakes up on the Subway the day after Halloween with "Help Me" scrawled across her torn costume and no idea how she got there.

Clean by Amy Reed
A group of teens in rehab who have drug and alcohol problems help a new member with deeper issues to resolve.

Dear Life, You Suck by Scott Blagden
A teen considers suicide until a girl steps into his life.

Delicate Monsters by Stephanie Kuehn
—This novel centers on the convergence of the lives of Sadie, a damaged girl who enjoys causing others pain, and Emerson, a boy who's trying desperately to hide the dysfunction inside his family and himself.

Desert Angel by Charlie Price
Angel is on the run from the man who abused her, killed her mother and intends to kill her too.

Dime by E.R. Frank
Thirteen-year-old Dime is a product of the foster system. She finds an escape in the books she reads, but she struggles academically because she is called on to help out with the younger foster children at home. One day she meets a girl who takes her in. Dime finds acceptance here, but is slowly groomed into becoming a prostitute.

DJ Rising by Love Maia
Marley's career as DJ Ices" is skyrocketing, but his mother's heroin addiction keeps dragging him back to earth.

Don't Breath a Word by Holly Cupala
Joy escapes from her suffocating teenage troubles to the streets where she falls in with a "street family" and finds her inner strengths.

Exit Strategy by Ryan Potter
A steroid scandal foils the plans of three teens hoping to leave town after graduation.

Exposed by Kimberly Marcus
Liz's, life changes when her best friend accuses Liz's older brother of a terrible crime.

Everybody Sees Ants by A.S. King
Overburdened by his parents' bickering and a bully's attacks, Lucky begins dreaming of being with his grandfather, who went missing during the Vietnam War.

The File on Angelyn Stark by Catherine Atkins
Angelyn is trying to get along while keeping a terrible secret about her past.

The Girls of No Return by Eric Saldin
A troubled girl in a wilderness school has complicated friendships with two other girls.

Hurricane Song by Paul Volponi
Miles and his father, survive the horrors of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans.

I Swear by Lane Davis
After bullying a girl who kills herself, her tormentors think about the consequences of their actions.

If I Grow Up by Todd Strasser
Growing up in the inner-city projects, DeShawn is reluctantly forced into the gang world.

Illegal by Bettina Resrepo
Nora, a Mexican girl, faces the challenges of being an illegal immigrant in Texas when she and her mother cross the border in search of Nora's father.

In Ecstasy by Kate McCaffrey
After taking ecstasy at a party, Mia falls into the drug culture while Sophie is sexually assaulted.

The Knife that Killed Me by Anthony McGowan
Loner Paul is befriended by a school bully who  gives him a knife to carry as an incentive to join a gang.

Jumped by Rita Williams-Garcia
Leticia overhears Dominique's plans to beat up Trina and must decide whether or not to get involved.

A Kid from Southie by John Shea
Desperate to help his unemployed mother, Aiden reluctantly begins working for the Irish mob is South Boston.

Leverage by Joshua Cohen
Two student athletes, a gymnast and a football player, form an unlikely alliance when a member of the gymnastics team is brutally assaulted.

Lie by Carolyn Bock
A group of teens conspire to protect a friend after he brutally attacks two Salvadoran immigrants.

Lockdown by Walter Dean Myers
Teenage Reese, serving time at a juvenile detention facility, gets a lesson in making it through hard times from an unlikely friend with a harrowing past.

More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera
In a Bronx neighborhood of the near future, it's no secret that at least one person has taken advantage of the Leteo Institute's new medical procedure that promises "cutting-edge memory-relief." Reeling from his discovery of his father in a blood-filled bathtub, there are lots of things that Aaron Soto would like to forget—the smile-shaped scar on his own wrist attests to that.

My Book of Life by Angel by Martine Leavitt
Angel struggles to free herself from the trap of prostitution.

My Chemical Mountain by Corina Vacco
Three boys go after the chemical plant that pollutes their town.

Pull by B.A. Binns
After his father kills his mother, David struggles to take care of his two sisters.

Rage: A Love Story by Julie Anne Peters
Johanna begins dating Reeve, who turns abusive, and her seriously troubled life deeply impacts Johanna.

Recovery Road by Blake Nelson
Maddie meets Stewart in rehab, and they try to maintain their relationship when they leave.

Rooftop by Paul Volponi
Clay witnesses the police kill his unarmed cousin on a roof in New York City.

Scars by Cheryl Rainfield
Kendra recalls devastating memories of childhood sexual abuse and she copes with the pressure by cutting herself.

Shine by Lauren Myracle
When her best friend falls victim to a vicious hate crime, sixteen-year-old Cat sets out to discover the culprits.

Some Girls Are by Courtney Summers
Regina, an in-crowd outcast, experiences the vicious bullying she used to inflict on others.

Something Like Hope by Shawn Goodman
Shavonne, a fierce, desperate seventeen year-old in juvenile lockup, wants to turn her life around before her eighteenth birthday, but corrupt guards, out-of-control girls, and shadows from her past make her task seem impossible.

Stay with Me by Paul Griffen
When Mack, a drop-out and genius with dogs, lands in prison, he pushes away the girl he loves.

Street Pharm by Allison Van Diepen
Ty, the number one dealer on the streets, has to rethink his whole strategy if he is to survive.

Surf Mules by G. Neri
A tragic accident and financial woes push Logan to transport marijuana for cash.

Tilt by Ellen Hopkins
Three teens connected by their parents' bad choices tell in their own voices of their lives and loves. (Also by Hopkins:Impulse: Tricks; Burned; Crank; Glass, Identical, Triangles, Perfect)

Trafficked by Kim Purcell
A Moldovan girl whose parents were killed is made to work as a slave for a family in Los Angeles.

Uses for Boys by Erica Lorraine Scheidt
Anna, whose absent mother chases new husbands, starts to chase boys in the same way.

Willow by Julia Hoban
Willow, who was driving the car that killed her parents, copes with the pain and guilt by cutting herself,

Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson
Lia comes to terms with her best friend's death from anorexia as she struggles with the same disorder.

Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass by Meg Medina
Yaqui's threats and harassment start to take  a toll on Piddy's life.