Book Reviews

In an effort to help parents have a better understanding of the content of books in middle school libraries in Shelby County Schools, we have begun labeling books that are considered YOUNG ADULT literature with a sticker on the spine of the book.
YA books are considered to be appropriate for students 7th grade (or age 12) and up.

Editorial reviews are used to determine if a book is considered YA.  Reviews sometimes differ based on the opinion of the reviewing organization.  Common book review sources that we use are School Library Journal, Kirkus Reviews, VOYA (Voices of Youth Advocates), Booklist, and more.  To find these reviews, parents can use these common book retailer sites (not every book will have reviews listed):

Barnes and Noble – ( – search for book title and click on Editorial Reviews.

Amazon – ( – search for book title and click on Editorial Reviews.

Alabama Virtual Library – ( – click on View All Resources, select EBSCOhost Search, click Limit Your Results: Publication: School Library Journal (or Kirkus, etc.), search the title of the book for which you are seeking a review.

Common Sense Media – ( – This site does not provide Editorial Reviews, but provides their own reviews and reviews by parents and students.