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Locked Up
  • Interest age: 13-18
  • School grade: 2

A teen fears that years in juvenile detention have made it impossible for him to make a life in the outside world.

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On the Run
  • Interest age: 13-18
  • School grade: 2

A teen realizes the only way to stop ending up back in juvenile detention is to take responsibility for his decisions.

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Cold Grab
  • Interest age: 13-18
  • School grade: 3

Recently arrived from the Philippines, Angelo needs friends to fit in, but he gets in with a group of teens involved in crime.

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Push Back
  • Interest age: 13-18
  • School grade: 4

Zaine enters a restorative-justice agreement to avoid criminal charges. But will his rage or some new gang members land him back on the streets first?

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Gang Girl
  • Interest age: 13-18
  • School grade: 3

As a newcomer from Russia, 16-year-old Sasha thinks she has found a new start in a girls' volunteerism group. But she quickly learns the group is really a front for a girl gang and has to find a way out.

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SideStreets Teacher's Resource Guide
  • Interest age: 14-18
  • School grade: 9-12

Epic Fail
  • Interest age: 13-18
  • School grade: 4

A 14-year-old Aboriginal/Caucasian girl, from a mixed-income Vancouver suburb, is raped at a party she attends with her two friends. Two years later, photos of the incident appear on social media, which has serious consequences for everyone involved. This book tells a tough but realistic story about teen relationships and sexual assault and how social media plays a role in magnifying its impact.

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Ride or Die
  • Interest age: 13-18
  • School grade: 4

A 15-year-old Black girl from small town Nova Scotia is lured into the sex trade by an older teenage boy. Based on true-events, this book recounts the physical and emotional abuse experienced by young victims of sex trafficking, and how one girl survives, escapes, and finds her way back home.

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Saving Grad
  • Interest age: 13-18
  • School grade: 5

Vienna, a mixed-Métis teen, and her mother experience racism and domestic violence while living with her step-father. They try to escape the situation by moving to Edmonton where they begin to start new lives. But when her step-father shows up at her new high school's grad party, Vienna has to find a way to keep herself, her mother, and her friends safe. This book illustrates the very real circumstances women and children victims of domestic abuse face and one family's struggle to escape a violent situation.

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Dark Side
  • Interest age: 13-18
  • School grade: 9-12

When ending it all seems like the only way out

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SideStreets

SideStreets Series

Edgy & realistic teen fiction

Series Website

Series features

  • Page-turning novels that engage reluctant readers
  • Presenting real-world issues in real ways
  • Award-winning, knowledgeable authors
  • Diverse characters and settings

"Sensitive and effective, these small, short books are explicitly aimed at reluctant readers." —Kirkus Reviews

"The quality of writing is excellent, and this book should be in every junior and senior- high school library...highly recommended."
—Canadian Book Review Annual

Sidestreets are edgy, fast-paced novels, that combine real-world themes and believable characters to make for short heart-stopping books - sure to engage the most reluctant reader.