Tuesday, August 1, 2017

10 Can't Miss New Releases for Teens and Tweens--August 1, 2017

We're back from our cruise this week, and boy was it great! Is there anything more beautiful than bright blue ocean waves and dark starry nights? I found a great reading spot on Deck 3, in the shade of the life boats. It was far away from the crowded, noisy pool and the perfect way for me to sink my teeth into a juicy YA pirate novel...Daughter of the Pirate King. We are already planning another cruise for next summer!

So this week, I've only found 10 books for our MS and HS library shelves. Of course, Solo is a must for every high school, and We Now Return to Regular Life looks pretty interesting, too. It reminds me of that TV movie I Know My First Name is Steven from the 1980s. For middle school, don't miss the latest from Jason Reynolds, Mike Morales, Spider-Man.

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Solo (Kwame Alexander, Mary Rand Hess)
My most-anticipated title of August! Kwame Alexander was our Battle of the Books author visit a couple of years ago, and he went down like a storm. He's funny, interesting, and incredibly talented! Seventeen-year-old Blade Morrison's life is bombarded with scathing tabloids and a father struggling with just about every addiction under the sun. Haunted by memories of his mother and his family’s ruin, Blade’s only hope is in the forbidden love of his girlfriend. But when he discovers a deeply protected family secret, Blade sets out on a journey across the globe that will change everything he thought to be true. All the professional reviews I've read recommend this one for high school. Realistic fiction, free verse.
We Now Return to Regular Life (Martine Wilson)
At age eleven, Sam Walsh was kidnapped by a pedophile and taken across the state to Anniston, Alabama. Sam was physically and mentally abused for years until the day Sam's kidnapper tries to abduct another boy and is caught. Now 14, Sam has returned home to a broken mother, an absent father, a sister he doesn't recognize, and an overwhelming media spectacle. But Sam does find a friend in his former bestie Josh, who was with Sam the day he was kidnapped. All four professional reviews I read put this one for high school readers, so middle school librarians might want to read it before adding to their libraries. Booklist starred this title. Realistic fiction.
When I Am Through With You (Stephanie Kuehn)
Ben Gibson is only seventeen, but he's a confessed murderer. And he's not sorry. During an ill-fated group camping trip, Ben killed his girlfriend Rosa. Now, Ben sits in jail and narrates his story. Give this to high school students who love Gretchen McNeil, Ashley Elston, or Justine Larbalestier. Psychological thriller, mystery.
The Secret History of Us (Jessi Kirby)
When seventeen-year old Liv wakes up in the hospital, her doctors say she and her boyfriend Matt were in a near-fatal car accident eight days ago. But Liv has lost more than eight days--she can't remember anything about the last four year of high school. She doesn't remember Matt or her friends. Slowly, Liv starts to remember her previous life, as well as all the ways her life is a lie. Professional and Goodreads reviews on this one are mixed, but Jessi Kirby is a solid YA writer. I know I can "sell" Secret History based on the description and name recognition alone. Give this to fans of Jenna Fox. Contemporary romance.
The Wood (Chelsea Bobulski)
Debut author! Winter's father is guardian of the wood, protector of time-travelers who slip through the portals and land in the wood. When Winter's father suddenly goes missing, the job falls to Winter. Winter tries to figure out what happened to her father, as well as takes up the guardian role in her father's absence. Then, she meets Henry, a time-traveler from the 17th Century whose parents are also missing. Fantasy.
Blight (Alexandra Duncan)
Seventeen-year old Tempest Torres has lived on the AgraStar farm since she was found outside its gates at age five. Now, Tempest is a security guard outside the farm gates, a deterrent to scavengers who might try to break in and steal genetically-engineered food. But a group of rebels sets off an explosion at a research compound, releasing a blight that kills everything in its path--including humans. Science fiction.
Truthers (Geoffrey Girard)
Reviews very mixed on this one. Publishers Weekly starred it while Kirkus says it's "slow-paced" with "cardboard characters." Katie Wallace was only a year old when terrorists struck American soil on Sept. 11, 2001. Now her dad has landed in a mental institution after claiming that the 9/11 attacks were part of a government conspiracy. And he claims that Katie is living proof: the lone survivor of a massive cover-up. Hoping to free her dad, Katie sets out to investigate his bizarre claims. Thriller.
Strange Alchemy (Gwenda Bond)
Whoohoo! A Roanoke Colony story for YAs from the author of the Lois Lane series. When 114 people suddenly disappear from modern-day Roanoke Island, it seems history is repeating itself. An unlikely pair of seventeen-year-olds might be the only hope of bringing the missing back. Miranda Blackwood, a member of one of island’s most infamous families, and Grant Rawling, the sherrif’s son, who has demons and secrets of his own, find themselves at the center of the mystery. Mystery, paranormal.


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Miles Morales, Spider-Man (Jason Reynolds)
Brooklyn Visions Academy student Miles Morales may not always want to be a super hero, but he must come to terms with his identity--and deal with a villainous teacher--as the new Spider Man. Written by Coretta Scott King Award winner and Ghost author Jason Reynolds, and if that cover design looks familiar, you are correct--it's by Caldecott-winning artist Kadir Nelson. Check out Goodreads for loads of rave reviews for this book, which was also starred by Kirkus. Action-adventure, superheroes.
Zinnia and the Bees (Danielle Davis, Laura K. Horton)
Seventh-grader Zinnia's last-day-of-school got off to a bad start when she ended up in the vice principal's office for yarn-bombing a statue of the school mascot, but it is about to get a whole lot worse--because, thanks to the incompetence of Bee 641, a colony of commercial, migratory bees escaping from a truck has settled their colony in her hair. Illustrated. Magical realism.

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This list also appears on my New Releases--Weekly Board on Pinterest:

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