Tuesday, June 13, 2017

13 Can't-Miss YA and MS New Releases (week of June 12, 2017)

Looking for some fun new YA reads?Welcome back to my weekly new releases posts! I've taken a couple of months off to reassess the amount of time I spend writing these new releases lists each week. While they are fun to research, they take a considerable amount of time to put together each week. Being a wife, mom, and full-time school librarian, there are just not enough hours in the day.

I've gotten so much feedback from fellow librarians and teachers, saying how helpful these weekly new release posts are for them. So, I am going to start posting them again on Tuesdays, with a couple of changes that will hopefully keep me sane and able to continue posting weekly lists. Read more...
The biggest change is that I will only focus on books for middle and high school readers. Young adult and middle school books are my passion, and they are the books I know the best.

Secondly, I will reduce the number of books I post about each week. I won't limit myself to any certain number, but I am only going to post "the best of the best" titles, those books that I think school and public libraries should spend their precious budget dollars on.

So that's my plan to keep this list going! We'll see how it goes. On to this week's new releases!

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Saints and Misfits (S.K. Ali)
This is a debut coming-of-age novel about Janna Yusuf, an "Arab Indian-American hijabi" teen who doesn't feel like she fits in anywhere. Others' opinions of her has never really bothered her until she meets Jeremy, a cute boy who seems different from everyone else. But Muslim girls can't date (or at least, they shouldn't), and Janna worries that her relationship with Jeremy will damage her reputation in her tight-knit Muslim community. Realistic fiction, coming-of-age.
Want (Cindy Pon)
Want, book 1. Set in a near-future Taipei, where pollution and a plague are killing all people who are not rich enough to buy special suits to protect their bodies. Frustrated by the city's corruption, Jason Zhou sets out to change things. Sci-fi, dystopia.
Garbage Night (Jen Lee)
In a barren and ransacked backyard, a dog named Simon lives with his two best friends: a raccoon and a deer. The unlikely gang spends their days looting the desolate supermarket and waiting for the return of the hallowed ‘garbage night’ – but week after week, the bins remain empty. While scavenging one day, the trio meet Barnaby – another abandoned dog who tells them about the ‘other town’ where humans are still rumored to live. Spurred on by hunger and the promise of food, the trio joins up with Barnaby and set off into the unknown. Graphic novel, dystopia, animals.
Bad Romance (Heather Demetrios)
Grace just wants out. Out of her abusive house, where her stepfather wields fear like a blade, and her mother makes her scrub imaginary dirt off the floors. When she meets Gavin, she thinks her dreams have come true. But Gavin has a dark side, and Grace's dreams are about to turn into a prison from which she cannot escape. Dating violence is such a poignant and timely topic for every high school student to understand. I've already ordered this for my library. Realistic fiction, abusive relationships.
Midnight at the Electric (Jodi Lynn Anderson)
Intertwines the stories of three girls living in very different times. Adri lives in Kansas in 2065. She's been chosen to live on Mars, but just before she leaves, she finds the journal of a girl who lived in her house over 100 years ago. Catherine lives in Oklahoma in 1934, during the Dust Bowl. Catherine longs for immortality promised by a traveling show called The Electric. In England, 1919, Lenore tries desperately to get over her grief at losing her brother in WWI. She is planning to sail to America to find a childhood friend. Historical fiction.
Be True to Me (Adele Griffin)
It's 1976--The Bicentennial--and rich, mean girl Jean is still playing second fiddle to her glamorous older sister. Thankfully, Gil Burke, a newcomer to their Long Island town, notices Jean, not her sister. But Fritz, the girl who humiliated Jean in the Island tennis championship, also has her eye on Gil, leading to disastrous consequences. Give this to fans of E. Lockhart's We Were Liars. Contemporary romance, alternating perspectives.
An Uninterrupted View of the Sky (Melanie Crowder)
Bolivia, 1999. Francisco's father has been arrested on false charges targeted at the poor and uneducated. When Francisco's mother abandons the family, Francisco and his sister must go to the prison to live with their father. Prison life is dirty and dehumanizing, and Francisco faces a choice: remain in the prison and keep his family together, or flee with his sister to find their grandmother in the Andean Mountains. Historical fiction (is 1999 considered historical fiction?), realistic fiction.
The Leaf Reader (Emily Arsenault)
Marnie Wells knows she creeps people out, and no one is surprised when Marnie finds an old tea leaf-reading book and starts telling fortunes. Basketball player Matt Cotrell comes to Marnie for a reading. He's been getting emails from someone claiming to be Andrea Quinley, his friend who disappeared and is presumed dead. For some, Matt is still a suspect in Andrea's disappearance. Marnie and Matt seem to have a connection, but when the readings suddenly get too real, Marnie starts to have doubts about Matt's innocence. Mystery, paranormal.

Summer Unscripted (Jen Klein)
The description on this one isn't so remarkable to me, but it's a summer read that I think will appeal to fans of Sarah Dessen. Summer romances are all the rage with my rising 8th grade library girls, and I always like stories featuring teens who have jobs. Pair this with Wesley James Ruined My Life.


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The Quilts of Gee's Bend (Susan Goldman Rubin)
In the rural community of Gee’s Bend, African American women have been making quilts for generations. They use scraps of old overalls, aprons, and bleached cornmeal sacks—anything they can find. Their traditions have been passed down through the decades. Much to the women’s surprise, a selection of the quilts was featured in an exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, in 2002. Photo essay, African-American culture and art.
Let's Pretend We Never Met (Melissa Walker)
Oh, this book is sooo true of some middle school girls. Mattie Markham and her family move in the middle of Mattie's sixth grade year...not good for Mattie, who worries she won't make friends at her new school. But then Mattie meets Agnes, her neighbor and classmate. Agnes is awesome...funny, curious, and smart. But Mattie soon learns that Agnes is known as the weird girl at school, the one no one likes. Mattie just wants to fit in; should she end her friendship with Agnes? Realistic fiction, friendships, mean girls.
A Dog Like Daisy (Kristin O'Donnell Tubb)
Told from the perspective of a rescued pitbull now training to be a service dog to an injured veteran and his family. Daisy only has 10 weeks to prove herself, or back to the dog pound she goes. Animal stories, PTSD.
Joplin, Wishing (Diane Stanley)
While cleaning out her reclusive grandfather's house, Joplin finds a broken platter. When the platter is repaired, Joplin wishes she could make a friend at school and befriend the girl in the platter. The next day, Joplin meets Barrett, and she also notices a girl outside her apartment. A girl who looks remarkably like the girl in the platter. Fantasy, mystery.

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  1. I think this is a perfect compromise!

  2. Thanks so much for putting the work into these posts. I appreciate all you do to support the TL community.


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