Tuesday, August 9, 2016

YA, MG, and Picture Book New Releases--August 9, 2016

Since there are only a handful of new YA releases this week, I have combined YA, MG, and picture books into one huge list. Based on these titles, you can tell 9/11 and Halloween are right around the corner!


All We Have Left (Wendy Mills)
This is a title to watch. Told in dual narratives, alternating between two girls in two different years. Alia is a Muslim girl living in Manhattan on the morning of September 11, 2001. Jesse's story, set in 2016, is about Jesse's family's grief on the upcoming 15th anniversary of 9/11 and the loss of Jesse's older brother during that event. Pair with Nora Raleigh Baskin's Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story, just released a few weeks ago. Contemporary fiction, dual narratives.

Watching Traffic (Jane Ozkowski)
This is another strong new release that has received lots of early praise. Emily has just graduated from high school and has no plans for what's next. She lives in "the armpit of Canada" and worries she will work for Pamela's Country Catering the rest of her life. A small-town slice of life set in Canada. Realistic fiction.

When We Was Fierce (e.E. Charlton Trujillo)
Fifteen-year old Theo isn't looking for trouble, but that's exactly what he gets when he stands up for Ricky-Ricky, a local boy brutally attacked by a local gang. Told in poetic verse, using street-slang. Pair with Tyrell by Coe Booth or The Crossover by Kwame Alexander. Free verse, realistic fiction, gangs, inner-city.

Nevernight (Jay Kristoff)
The Nevernight Chronicle, book 1. This one will be highly-anticipated with fans of Kristoff's space odyssey Illuminae. The daughter of an executed traitor, Mia Corvere has the ability to speak with the shadows. Hunted by those who killed her father, Mia is alone and friendless until she is recruited by The Red Church, a group of deadly assassins. If initiated into an elite group of female assassins, Mia will have the opportunity to avenge her father's death. Give this to fans of The Mortal Instruments series (Clare). Fantasy.

All the Ugly and Wonderful Things (Bryn Greenwood)
Since it features a teen girl's relationship with an older man, this debut novel is not for everyone and is probably better for upper-high school students and adults. I debated on including it here, but the early reviews are strong and it sounds quite unique. As the daughter of a drug dealer, Wavy finds it hard to trust people and prefers to keep to herself. But after witnessing a horrific motorcycle accident, Wavy is drawn to one of her father's thugs, an ex-con with a heart of gold. Contemporary romance, drugs.


Friday Barnes Under Suspicion (R.A. Spratt)
Friday Barnes, book 2. This looks cute! In the first book, boarding school student Friday Barnes cracked the case of the swamp-yeti. Now, the police have accused Friday of a crime, and it is up to Friday and her friends to clear her name, decipher a decades-old mystery, and figure out which boy she likes best. Mystery.

Kid Artists: True Tales of Childhood from Creative Legends (David Stabler, Doogie Horner)
Kid Legends series. Biographical profiles and stories of 16 world-famous artists when they were children, including Jackson Pollock, Andy Warhol, Yoko Ono, and Charles Schultz. I like that the book includes a range of artists, styles, and time periods, and the full-color illustrations will draw readers in. Also check out Kid Presidents and Kid Athletes (both on sale on Kindle in August 2016). Narrative nonfiction, biography.

Dr. Fell and the Playground of Doom (David Neilson)
The mysterious Dr. Fell moves into an old abandoned house that was once a hangout for neighborhood kids. To make amends, he immediately builds an elaborate playground, which quickly becomes the new place for children and adults to play. Only Jerry, Nancy, and Gail are immune to this extravagant wonderland, and it's up to them to find out what tricks the good doctor is up to. Mystery.

The Trouble With Twins (Kathryn Siebel)
Twins Henrietta and Arabella are nothing alike, so much so that Henrietta plans to do something mean to her sister. When the deed is discovered, Henrietta is sent to live with her strange great-aunt Priscilla, whose creepy house has Henrietta missing Arabella more than ever. Pair with Claire LeGrand's The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls. Humor, adventure.

Horus and the Curse of Everlasting Regret (Hannah Voskuil)
A boy, a girl, a pet bat, and a cursed mummy named Horus try to find a kidnapped girl and reverse an ancient curse. Interestingly, this one is set during the Great Depression, and the boy and the girl are from different socioeconomic backgrounds. Adventure, mystery, friendship.

Charlie Joe Jackson's Guide to (Not) Growing Up (Tommy Greenwald)
Sixth book in the Charlie Joe Jackson series. If you are not already familiar with this series, trust me that it is a must for middle schooler, especially reluctant readers. Charlie Joe is about to graduate from middle school--YAY! But instead of hearing about summer and pools and lazy days, he keeps hearing about responsibility and college prep. Charlie Joe is certain of one thing: he isn't ready for high school. Humor.

Calliope the Muse (Joan Holub)
Another Goddess Girls story, this one about Calliope, the muse of epic poetry. Calliope's story makes the 20th book in this series, which is still popular among our middle grade girls.

A Boy Named Queen (Sara Cassidy)
Fifth grader Evelyn is shocked and fascinated by a new boy in her class who tells everyone his name is Queen. Queen is different and most definitely not someone Evelyn's strict mother would approve of as Evelyn's friend. But when Evelyn discovers she and Queen take the same route home, they become unlikely friends. Friendship, GLBT.

Hundred Percent (Karen Romano Young)
This sounds like a slice-of-life story that could be about anyone. In her last year in elementary school, Christine "Tink" Gouda copes with the difficulties of growing up, first crushes, and changing friendships. Realistic fiction.

Piper Morgan in Charge! (Stephanie Faris)
Piper Morgan and her mother move to her mother's hometown, where her mother will work in Piper's school principal's office. Piper is excited to be made an office helper, but the principal's daughter seems out to prove she is better than Piper. Realistic fiction.

The Girl Who Drank the Moon (Kelly Barnhill)
Oh, yes, I will be ordering this one. A beautifully-written fantasy about a kind witch named Xan who saves children and feeds them starlight. When she accidentally feeds one girl moonlight, Xan must raise the magical girl on her own. Huge Goodreads ratings on this one! Fantasy.


Bad Kitty: Scared Cat (Nick Bruel)
A new Bad Kitty picture book take on Halloween. Bad Kitty was scared by trick-or-treaters last year. Can she she be brave this year? The Bad Kitty books are cute, funny ABC books that are always a hit with preschool and early primary students.
My Friend Maggie (Hannah E. Harrison)
This is a book that will resonate with many students, girls in particular. Maggie and Paula have been friends forever, but when mean girl Veronica snubs Maggie in favor of Paula, Paula starts to notice how big and clumsy Maggie is. Paula starts to play with Veronica and not Kate. But when Veronica's true colors show through, Maggie shows that she is a true friend. I think this title could work well in middle schools as well.
What A Beautiful Morning (Arthur Levine)
I won't be able to read this book without crying, and I definitely plan to get it for my MS/HS library. Noah has a great time when his grandparents visit and especially enjoys his energetic morning walks with his grandfather. But one summer, Noah's grandfather forgets all the things he and Noah love. Noah is confused, and his grandmother shows Noah how he can help his grandfather remember...through music. Pair with Wilfred Gordon McDonald Partridge by Mem Fox.
10 Little Ninjas (Miranda Paul, Nate Wragg)
Told to the tune of "Five Little Monkeys." It's bedtime, but no one wants to go to bed just yet.
Who's the Grossest of Them All? (Susan McElroy Montanari)
Goblin and Troll disagree about which of them is most horrible being in the forest. Goblin says he is most horrible, and Troll says he is the most horrible. They decide to settle the argument by asking passersby to decide. One chooses Goblin. Another chooses Troll. Then a little girl (Little Red Riding Hood) passes by, and Goblin and Troll agree to let the girl's decision be final. Who will she choose? Perfect for Halloween.
10 Busy Brooms (Carole Gerber, Michael Fleming)
A rhyming counting book for Halloween.
Peep and Egg: I'm Not Trick-or-Treating (Laura Gehl, Joyce Wan)
It's Halloween, and Peep is excited for trick-or-treating. But Egg is too scared to go! Can Peep convince Egg that nothing is scary when you have someone you love by your side?
There's a Bear on My Chair (Ross Collins)
Bear has settled into Mouse's chair, and he does not want to move. Nothing Mouse can think of will move Bear, until Mouse figures out a way to turn the tables.


  1. Thank you for sharing all the new titles. Being a school librarian can be a lonely job. You make me feel connected and informed. It is easy to keep up with new titles thanks to you. I appreciate your ideas and I am going to start sharing them with my middle school language arts teachers.

    1. Awww, you are so welcome! I started doing these lists in May because I was so excited about the releases that month, but I have continued to do it because I find it so helpful for myself as well! I hope I can keep up with it when school starts next week. Thank you for sharing!

  2. Thank you, Leigh! You're amazing!

    1. You are welcome, Melanie! I get a lot out of putting them together as well. Happy back-to-school!

  3. Thanks Leigh, for another great list. Can't wait to order many of these for the next school year! Tracey

    1. Cheers, Tracey! Have a great first day back!

  4. Looks like there are lots of great books coming out this week! I have some of them coming into my library with my fall order and others I will keep my eyes out for. I am excited to see Piper Morgan on the list. I have read other books by Stephanie Faris and enjoyed them.

    Thanks for sharing!

    1. Being a secondary librarian and a mom to tween boys, I am not as familiar with Piper Morgan. Is it kind of like Clementine or Junie B?

      There were a ton of releases this week, but wait till you see the list for August 30! I'm going to need to take a week off work to write that one up--so many releases!

  5. Thank you for including Piper on your list! She's in very good company up there. :-)

    1. Hi, Stephanie! I am always so humbled when authors find me and comment!

  6. Hi Leigh,
    Thank you so much for including Peep and Egg: I'm Not Trick or Treating in this list, with other really wonderful new books.
    Happy very early Halloween!


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