High School senior and bookworm Clara got to school early on the first day of her senior year because she volunteers in the library. She discovers that over the summer the tony private school she attends has banned 50 books, including her very favorite book by her favorite author, which she has just stayed up all night reading before getting zero sleep and coming to school. So Clara does the only logical thing, she starts an underground library loaning those books from her locker.
Books are a light. A light that melts ignorance and hate.
What follows is a love letter to reading, and the power of the written word, especially in book form, to change minds and change lives. Our protagonist is a high school senior that manages several Tiny Little Libraries in town and started a book club that meets at a Mexican restaurant. She says stuff like, “Where some people defined their years by grade, I defined mine by the book that changed me the most that year.” However, Clara is a high school senior, so we get our fair share of high school drama as Clara, who is somewhat judgy and self-absorbed, starts to deal with the potential consequences of rebellion, specifically the full ride scholarship she needs if she is going to attend Vanderbilt for college. Thankfully, the high school drama is mostly devoid of high school romances.
It’s a YA book that starts out lighthearted but ultimately dives into some pretty deep issues, including suicide, teenage LBGT issues, and white privilege, but does so in a very PG way that I’m sure will still upset the very people being taken to task in this book - people that would ban books.