Tuesday, September 26, 2017

New Releases--September 26, 2017

Several creepy books for Halloween this week. We are also starting to see some new Christmas titles popping up! As usual, my "worth a look" titles are highlighted in purple.

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Young Adult (GRADES 7+):

There's Someone Inside Your House (Stephanie Perkins)
Reviews are mixed on this title, but I think it's perfect for high schoolers who love slasher films and Halloween. One-by-one, the students of Osborne High are dying in a series of gruesome murders, each with increasing and grotesque flair. As the terror grows closer and the hunt intensifies for the killer, the dark secrets among them must finally be confronted. Horror, suspense.
Language of Thorns (Leigh Bardugo, Sarah Kipin)
Another great choice for Halloween! This collection of six illustrated short stories is set in the Grishaverse and is based on myths, fairytales, and folklore the characters in Bardugo's Grisha series might have heard as children. Travel to a world of dark bargains struck by moonlight, of haunted towns and hungry woods, of talking beasts and gingerbread golems, where a young mermaid's voice can summon deadly storms and where a river might do a lovestruck boy's bidding but only for a terrible price. Booklist starred. Short stories, fantasy.
Spliced (Jon McGoran)
I love this cover! It reminds me of the movie The Amazing Spider-Man, which I just watched last night. Sixteen-year-old Jimi's friend Del is obsessed with becoming a chimera: a person who pays back-alley geneticists, known as genies, to illegally splice animal genes into their own. The resulting physical changes have scared lawmakers into drafting legislation declaring chimeras officially nonpersons, so when Del goes missing, Jimi is desperate to find him before he alters himself forever. Sci-fi, dystopia, DNA.
A Short History of the Girl Next Door (Jared Reck)
High school freshman Matt Wainwright has loved his best friend Tabby for years but hasn't been able to work up the nerve to tell her. Now, Tabby's gotten the attention of a popular senior, and Matt feels like it's hopeless. Just when things might be looking up, Matt loses Tabby forever. I always love realistic fiction from a male perspective. Give this to fans of Looking for Alaska. Contemporary fiction, grief.


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Wishtree (Katherine Applegate)
I put this in the middle school section, but it is a great choice for elementary as well. Red is an oak tree who is many rings old. Red is the neighborhood "wishtree"―people write their wishes on pieces of cloth and tie them to Red's branches. Along with her crow friend Bongo and other animals who seek refuge in Red's hollows, this "wishtree" watches over the neighborhood. You might say Red has seen it all. Until a new family moves in. Not everyone is welcoming, and Red's experiences as a wishtree are more important than ever. Multiple starred reviews.
The Wonderling (Mira Bartok)
Welcome to the Home for Wayward and Misbegotten Creatures, an institution run by evil Miss Carbunkle, a cunning villainess who believes her terrified young charges exist only to serve and suffer. Part animal and part human, the groundlings toil in classroom and factory, forbidden to enjoy anything regular children have, most particularly singing and music. For the Wonderling, an innocent-hearted, one-eared, fox-like eleven-year-old with only a number rather than a proper name, it is the only home he has ever known. SLJ and Kirkus starred. Animal fantasy.
Skeleton Tree (Kim Ventrella, Victoria Assanelli)
When Stanley Stanwright finds a bone poking out of the earth in his back garden, he is determined to take a picture of it and send it to the Young Discoverer's Competition, thinking it will help bring his dad back home. But the bone begins to grow, reaching up out of the ground until it turns into a skeleton - a skeleton with an unusual interest in his unwell younger sister Miren. Illustrated. Magical realism, death, grief.
Nutcracked (Susan Adrian)
Since her grandfather first took her to see The Nutcracker, Georgie has dreamed of being cast as Clara in her ballet company’s annual Christmas production of the Nutcracker. When it actually happens, it’s not at all as she’d hoped. Her best friend won’t talk to her, her grandfather is in the hospital, and every time she holds her teacher’s antique nutcracker in her arms while she dances, she goes somewhere else. Somewhere dangerous. Somewhere with massive Christmas trees, a three-headed mouse king, and row of toy soldiers bigger than her. Fantasy, holidays.
Graveyard Shakes (Laura Terry)
Katia and Victoria are sisters and scholarship students at a private boarding school. While Victoria tries to fit in, Katia is unapologetic about her quirks, even though their classmates tease her. After a big fight, Katia runs away from school. And when Victoria goes looking for her, she accidentally tumbles into the underworld of a nearby graveyard. Pair with the graphic novel version of Gaiman's The Graveyard Book. Graphic novel, fantasy.
The Wolf Hour (Sara Lewis Holmes)
Welcome, my little lambs, to the Puszcza. It's an ancient forest, a keeper of the deepest magic, where even the darkest fairy tales are real. Here, a Girl is not supposed to be a woodcutter. Or be brave enough to walk alone. Here, a Wolf is not supposed to love to read. Or be curious enough to meet a human. And here, a Story is nothing like the ones you read in books, for the Witch can make the most startling tales come alive. All she needs is a Girl from the village, a Wolf from the forest, and a woodcutter with a nice, sharp axe. Another fun choice for Halloween. Retelling.
The 12 Dares of Christa (Marissa Burt)
Christa seriously loves Christmas, but thanks to her parents’ recent separation, Christa’s favorite time of year is now filled with heartache. When her mom announces that she’s taking her on a mother-daughter trip to Europe over winter vacation, Christa knows she should be excited. She just can’t imagine spending Christmas without her dad. But a special package is waiting for Christa at their Italian hotel: the first of twelve dares that take Christa to landmarks in three countries. Realistic fiction, scavenger hunt, holidays.


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Dazzle Ships (Chris Barton, Victo Ngai)
During WWI, Britain's warships were under constant attack from German U-Boats, and the Royal Navy was desperate to find a way to curb the attacks. The stroke of genius came in the form of art: the ships were painted with optical illusions. The swirling patterns made it impossible for even the most seasoned sailors to predict the movements of British ships. A cool, interesting addition to elementary and middle school libraries. This could make fun art project as well. Illustrated. Multiple starred reviews. Nonfiction.
Ben Franklin's In My Bathroom (Candace Fleming, Mark Fearing)
Through a bizarre set of circumstances, Nolan and his little sister, Olive, find Ben Franklin in their house. From introducing him to the toaster to taking him to the public library (another Ben invention) to preventing a nosy neighbor from blowing Ben's cover, Nolan does his best to be Ben's tour guide to the new world he helped form. Humor, time travel.
Top Elf (Caleb Huett)
I think this is the first Christmas book release I've seen this year! Ollie and Celia think they know what the life of an elf is supposed to be like: Make toys. Help Santa. Make more toys. Help Santa. Try out a new ice-cream flavor. Help Santa.But then Santa rocks the North Pole with a surprise announcement! He's decided this is going to be his last year in the Big Red Suit--and instead of letting his oldest son, the unfortunately named Klaus Claus, take over, he's opening up the job to any kid who wants to apply--Claus or elf. Holidays, humor.
The Handbook (Jim Benton)
From the author of the Dear Dumb Diary series. When Jake and his friends find a Secret Parent's Handbook, they discover all the means to subvert the irrational rules and petty tyranny of their home lives. No more clean rooms! No more vegetables! No more brushed hair or washed hands! It's all videogames and junk food all the time! But the authorities--and the resistance--have taken notice of the strange goings-on in Jack and his friends' neighborhood. And they are closing in. Illustrated. Humor.


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

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