Tuesday, September 13, 2016

New Release Spotlight--Sept. 13, 2016

Somehow, these lists keep getting longer, no matter how much I try to pick the best new releases of the week. There are just soooo many good ones! This week's list weighs in with 16 new YAs, 8 MGs, and 11 picture books. Of note are the new Raina Telgemeier graphic novel (order as many as you can--it will be POPULAR!), the first book in the Sea of Ink and Gold series (also a debut author!), a memoir of a teen boy who escaped North Korea, and a picture book about the water crisis in West Africa. Enjoy!


The Reader (Traci Chee)
Sea of Ink and Gold, book 1. Debut author! After her father's murder, Sefia flees to the wilderness with her aunt. But when her aunt is kidnapped, Sefia is left alone. To find her aunt, Sefia will need the help of a mysterious stranger and a strange rectangular artifact her father left behind--something called a book--to save her aunt and bring those who murdered her father to justice. Fantasy, dystopia, pirates.
The Forgetting (Sharon Cameron)
Every twelve years, the people of Canaan lose their memories. So they can remember who they are, people carry around little books and write down their memories. Nadia alone remembers the chaos of the last Forgetting Day. Because unlike everyone else in Canaan, Nadia does not forget. Dystopia.
The Last True Love Story (Brendan Kiely)
Seventeen-year olds Corrina and Hendrix steal a car and take Gpa, an elderly Alzheimer's patient, and a dog named Old Humper on a cross-country trip to find the hill where Gpa first kissed his wife, before his memory of her washes away completely. Realistic fiction, Alzheimer's Disease, aging, loneliness.
The Mighty Odds (Amy Ignatow)
Four teens with very different lives are involved in a freak accident together. Suddenly, the all notice they are developing some strange powers. Alternates viewpoints from all four teens. Martina, an artist with the power to change her eye color, includes illustrations in her chapters. Paranormal, superpowers.
Overdrive (Dawn Ius)
Teen car thief Jules Parish has finally been busted. She and her little sister Emma are going to get kicked out of their foster home, again. But Emma and Jules soon find a ray of hope--an eccentric millionaire has opened his home to the sisters. The catch? Jules has to steal help three other teen thieves steal seven rare muscle cars in seven weeks. Action-adventure, realistic fiction.
Into White (Randi Pink)
Another debut author! Toya Williams and her brother Alex are the only black students at a mostly-white high school in Alabama. The victim of racism at school, Toya prays to Jesus that she become white. When she wakes up, her prayer has been answered. Magical realism.
Gamescape (Emma Trevayne)
The Nova Project, book 1. On a future earth that's been completely destroyed by years of overuse, a dying boy plays a high-stakes virtual reality game in the hopes of gaining a healthy body. Science fiction, virtual reality, environmental issues.
Dark Horses (Cecily von Ziegesar)
Black Beauty retelling, partially told from the horse's point of view. Sixteen-year old Merritt is sent to Good Fences, a equine camp for troubled teens. There, Merritt meets Red, a failed racehorse and a terror in the barn. Merritt and Red form a bond, and they are soon thrown into the competitive jumper circuit. Realistic fiction, horses.
Every Falling Star (Sungju Lee, Susan Elizabeth McClelland)
Memoir of Sungju, a North Korean boy who at age 12 was forced to fend for himself on the streets of North Korea. To survive, Sungju creates a gang and lives by thieving, fighting, begging, and stealing rides on cargo trains. A very needed addition to school and public libraries. Narrative nonfiction, memoir, North Korea, gangs.
The Lost and the Found (Cat Clarke)
Thirteen years ago, a very young girl named Faith was the only witness to her six-year old sister's abduction. Now, a woman has been found in the Logan family's garden, clutching the teddy bear Faith was holding when she disappeared. Faith is thrilled to have her big sister back, something she's dreamed of but never thought would actually happen. But much remains unexplained, and Faith is determined to find out what really happened to her sister. Thriller, mystery, missing persons.
Going Geek (Charlotte Huang)
Skylar Hoffman’s senior year at her preppy East Coast boarding school should have been perfect. She has an amazing boyfriend, the coolest friends, and the most desirable dorm. But it’s far from it. Booted from her cool dorm, Skylar now lives with a bunch of lame girls. Her family is having financial problems. And when it turns out that Skylar’s best friend is the one responsible for having her booted from Lincoln? It’s an all-out war. Realistic fiction, boarding school.
A Song to Take the World Apart (Zan Romanoff)
All her life, Lorelei's grandmother has warned her not to sing. But when she starts hanging out with Chris, a cool older boy in a band, Lorelei starts to feel her own voice locked up in her throat. As she experiments with the secret power her grandmother has hidden from her, the foundations of Lorelei's life start to crumble. Magical realism.
Snow White: The Graphic Novel (Matt Phelan)
New York City, early 1930s. Samantha White returns home after being sent away by her cruel stepmother. Samantha's father, the King of Wall Street, survived the stock market crash only to suffer a strange and sudden death. A mysterious stock ticker holds the stepmother in its thrall, churning out ticker tape imprinted with the wicked words "Another...More Beautiful...KILL." Graphic novel, retelling.
The Boy Who Killed Grant Parker (Kat Spears)
Luke Grayson is the new kid in town and an easy target for local menace Grant Parker. But things go topsy-turvy when a freak accident removes Grant from the top of the social pyramid, replacing him with Luke. This fish out of water has suddenly gone from social outcast to hero in a matter of twenty-four hours. Nobody knows the truth about what really happened to Grant Parker except for Luke, and the longer he keeps living the lie, the more like Grant Parker he becomes. Realistic fiction, psychology.
When They Fade (Jeyn Roberts)
You know that urban legend about the hitchhiker who is really a ghost? This book takes that story and alternates between two characters: Molly, the hitchhiking ghost of a teen murdered in the 1970s, and Tatum, a modern-day teen facing brutal bullying after a whistle-blowing incident. When Tatum picks up a hitchhiker--Molly--Tatum is warned that her death is coming soon. Horror, paranormal.
Radical (E.M. Kokie)
Bex and her brother are preppers, people who are certain that large-scale disaster is imminent. When Bex and her brother get involved with Clearview, a Doomsday group, Bex meets Lucy, a beautiful girl who makes Bex question everything. Survival, GLBT.


Creeping Shadow (Jonathan Stroud)
Lockwood & Co., book 4. My students will be asking for this one--Lockwood & Co. is pretty popular in my library! This series is well-written, mysterious, and at times, pretty scary. I debated on putting this title in the YA section because it is better for the upper-end of middle grade. It may scare more sensitive readers. Horror, mystery.
The Poet's Dog (Patricia MacLachlan)
Teddy is a gifted dog raised in a cabin by a poet named Sylvan. Although Teddy understands words, Sylvan always told him there are only two kinds of people in the world who can hear Teddy speak: poets and children. When Teddy finds Nickel and Flora trapped in a snowstorm, he tells them that he will bring them home—and they understand him. They follow him to a cabin in the woods, where the dog used to live with Sylvan...only now his owner is gone. Magical realism, poetry.
Ghosts (Raina Telgemeier)
I could purchase fifty of this title for my library and have all of them checked out to students by the end of the day. Raina Telgemeier is crazy- insane- ridiculously-popular in my library. Sisters Cat and Maya move to a new town in the hopes of helping with Maya's cystic fibrosis. The girls quickly discover that the townspeople live side-by-side with ghosts. Just in time for Halloween and El Dia de los Muertos. Realistic fiction, serious illness.
The Littlest Bigfoot (Jennifer Weiner)
Twelve-year old Alice slips through the world unnoticed and longs for a real friend. She finds one in Millie, a girl Alice rescues from drowning in a lake. But Millie has a secret...she's a Bigfoot. Bigfoots fear No-Furs--humans--and Millie asks Alice to keep her a secret from the humans, some of whom are actively hunting Millie and her family. Magical realism.
Strikeout of the Bleacher Weenies: And Other Warped and Creepy Tales (David Lubar)
Looking for some cheeky Halloween fun for nine-year olds? Despite the title, these Weenie stories are more silly than creepy. This series is great for elementary students who ask for scary stories but don't really want anything too scary. Short stories, Halloween.
The Evil Wizard Smallbone (Delia Sherman)
A lost boy finds himself an unlikely apprentice to the very old, vaguely evil, mostly just grumpy Wizard Smallbone. Fantasy.
Two Naomis (Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich, Audrey Vernick )
A realistic contemporary story of two girls, both named Naomi, whose divorced parents begin to date.
Memory Wall (Lev AC Rosen)
Severkin is an elf who slinks through the shadows of Wellhall’s spiraling stone towers, plundering ancient ruins and slaying mystical monstrosities with ease. He’s also a character in a video game—a character that twelve-year-old Nick Reeves plays when he needs a break from the real world. Magical realism.


The Darkest Dark (Chris Hadfield)
Inspired by the childhood of real-life astronaut Chris Hadfield. Chris loves rockets and planets and pretending he's a brave astronaut, exploring the universe. Only one problem--at night, Chris doesn't feel so brave. He's afraid of the dark. But when he watches the groundbreaking moon landing on TV, he realizes that space is the darkest dark there is--and the dark is beautiful and exciting, especially when you have big dreams to keep you company.
Leave Me Alone! (Vera Brosgol)
A cute grandma is tired of all the interruptions! So she leaves her home and big family and travels to the moon and beyond, in search of a quiet place to finish her knitting. Along the way, she encounters ravenous bears, obnoxious goats, and even a horde of aliens. But nothing will stop grandma from knitting sweaters to keep her family warm in the winter.
The Water Princess (Susan Verde, Georgie Badiel, Peter H. Reynolds)
Based on the childhood of supermodel Georgie Badiel, who works to bring potent water wells to West Africa. As a child in Burkina Faso, Georgie and the other girls in her village had to walk for miles each day to collect water. This vibrant, engaging picture book sheds light on this struggle that continues all over the world today, instilling hope for a future when all children will have access to clean drinking water. This will be a perfect addition to my upcoming Picture Books Around the World project (I'll write it up when it's ready to go).
King Baby (Kate Beaton)
King Baby is cute and cuddly. Everyone wants to take his picture and give him kisses. But King Baby makes many demands. Can his loyal subjects keep up? This would be a great baby shower gift!
Rabbit and Robot and Ribbit (CeCe Bell)
CeCe Bell and Raina Telgemeier releasing new books in the same week? Yay! Three's a crowd when Rabbit shows up at his friend Robot's house unexpectedly. Robot is engrossed in a game of Checkers with Ribbit, and Rabbit feels completely left out and jealous. I would imagine many readers will identify with Rabbit's jealousy his friend's other friendship.
ABC Alphabet from the Sky (Benedikt Gross, Joey Lee)
Ariel photos of accidental alphabet letters all over the world. Pair with Johnson's Alphabet City.
Duck on a Tractor (David Shannon)
Duck's back, and this time, he's ready to ride the farmer's tractor. But riding the tractor around the farm isn't enough. What will the people in town say as Duck and his farm friends ride the tractor into town?
Pond (Jim LaMarche)
Those illustrations! So pretty! A quiet story about a boy and his two friends who try to restore a polluted dirt pit back into a beautiful pond. I love this idea and can think of a couple of polluted dirt pits around my neighborhood here in China that could use this kind of TLC.
Home At Last (Vera B. Williams, Chris Raschka)
A little boy named Lester is adopted by Daddy Albert and Daddy Rich. While Lester adjusts well during the day, he gets scared and worried at night. His Dads try everything they can think of to get Lester to sleep in his own room at night, but it's the family dog that comes up with the winning solution.
Freedom Over Me: Eleven Slaves, Their Lives and Dreams Brought to Life by Ashley Bryan (Ashley Bryan)
Using original slave auction and plantation estate documents, Ashley Bryan offers a moving and powerful picture book that contrasts the monetary value of a slave with the priceless value of life experiences and dreams that a slave owner could never take away. Secondary librarians take note of this title!
An Artist's Alphabet (Norman Messenger)
Upper- and lower-case letters form the beautiful illustrations in an alphabet book. I love the art in this one!

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