Tuesday, November 14, 2017

New Releases--November 14, 2017

Looking at this week's book list, I really, really wish we had a Thanksgiving break here in China so I could hole up and read all week. Alas, no Thanksgiving for me again this year. This will be my fourth year in a row to work on Thanksgiving Day. I've never been big on turkey, but I do love me some mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie! Since my new school has lots of American students and teachers, I'm betting they will at least have some Thanksgiving food on the menu that day. Fingers crossed!

So check out this week's list! The word for this week is: unique. We have a couple of thrillers, a couple of fantasy adventures, a dark fantasy, a romance from the POV of an autistic boy (!), an alternate present where Nazis rule, and not one but TWO bookish heroes out to save the day...wow!

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Fragments of the Lost (Megan Miranda)
I am always looking for great thriller titles for my library, and this one looks like it would be very easy to booktalk. After Jessa's boyfriend Caleb dies in a tragic accident, Caleb's mother asks Jessa to pack up Caleb's room. As she cleans, Jessa finds hints that she didn't really know Caleb at all. Each fragment of Caleb's life propels Jessa to find out the truth about Caleb's accident. Comparisons to Gone Girl or maybe even Genuine Fraud are inevitable. Three professional review journals recommend this for Grades 9-12. Mystery, thriller.
Kids Like Us (Hilary Reyl)
Oooh...could this be The Rosie Project for teens? Martin is an American teen on the autism spectrum living in France with his mom and sister for the summer. He falls for a French girl who he thinks is a real-life incarnation of a character in his favorite book. Over time Martin comes to realize she is a real person and not a character in a novel while at the same time learning that love is not out of his reach just because he is autistic. Multiple starred reviews. Romance.
Good and Gone (Megan Frazer Blakemore)
While on a road trip with her depressed older brother and gay friend, to find a missing musician, fifteen-year-old Lexi grapples with painful memories of sexual assualt by her ex-boyfriend. Give this to teens who like their road trip stories with a hefty dose of emotional trauma. There is a large discrepancy in the recommended ages for this Good and Gone PW and Kirkus both rate this at ages 13+, but SLJ recommends it for Grades 10+. Realistic fiction, abuse.
The Road to Every After (Moira Young)
When a stray dog named George turns orphan Davy David's life upside down just days before Christmas, Davy sets in motion a chain of events that forces them to flee. A mischievous wind blows the two of them to a boarded-up museum on the outskirts of town where they meet the elderly recluse, Miss Flint. She has planned one last adventure before her time is up and hires the reluctant Davy and George to escort her. As they travel, the most peculiar thing begins to happen--Miss Flint gets younger and younger with every mile, and her story unfolds along with it. Recommended ages from professional reviewers are all over the place, ranging from Grade 4 all the way up to Grade 10. Publisher's Weekly starred. Fantasy, adventure.
Runebinder (Alex R. Kahler)
When magic returned to the world, it could have saved humanity, but greed and thirst for power caused mankind's downfall instead. Now once-human monsters called Howls prowl abandoned streets, their hunger guided by corrupt necromancers and the all-powerful Kin. Only Hunters have the power to fight back in the unending war, using the same magic that ended civilization in the first place. But they are losing. Tenn is a Hunter, resigned to fight even though hope is nearly lost. Give to fans of Falling Kingdoms. Multiple professional reviewers recommend Runebinder for Grades 9-12. Dark fantasy.
Being Fishkill (Ruth Lehrer)
Born in the backseat of a moving car, Carmel Fishkill was unceremoniously pushed into a world that refuses to offer her security, stability, love. At age thirteen, she begins to fight back. Carmel Fishkill becomes Fishkill Carmel, who deflects her tormenters with a strong left hook and conceals her secrets from teachers and social workers. But Fishkill's fierce defenses falter when she meets eccentric optimist Duck-Duck Farina, and soon they, along with Duck-Duck's mother, Molly, form a tentative family, even as Fishkill struggles to understand her place in it. Several reviews recommend Grades 9-12, but SLJ says Grades 6-10. VOYA starred. Realistic fiction.
The Big Lie (Julie Mayhew)
Originally published in 2015. Nazi England, 2014. Jessika Keller is a good girl -- a champion ice skater, model student of the Bund Deutscher Madel, and dutiful daughter of the Greater German Reich. Her best friend, Clementine, is not so submissive. Passionately different, Clem is outspoken, dangerous, and radical. And the regime has noticed. Jess cannot keep both her perfect life and her dearest friend, her first love. Multiple professional reviewers recommend this for Grades 9-12. Kirkus recommends both high school and adult readers. Publisher's Weekly and SLJ starred. Dystopia.

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Whichwood (Tahereh Mafi)
How gorgeous is that cover? Wow! This is the companion to Mafi's Nevermore, which came out last year. Laylee can barely remember the happier times before her beloved mother died. Before her father, driven by grief, lost his wits (and his way). Before she was left as the sole remaining mordeshoor in the village of Whichwood, destined to spend her days washing the bodies of the dead and preparing their souls for the afterlife. But soon, a pair of familiar strangers appears, and Laylee’s world is turned upside down as she rediscovers color, magic, and the healing power of friendship. Multiple starred reviews recommend Whichwood for grades 5-8. Fantasy.
Penelope March Is Melting! (Jeffrey Michael Ruby)
Something sinister has come to Glacier Cove, an icy-cold town that sits on top of an iceberg. Nothing bad ever happens here. Until now. And it's up to twelve-year old Penelope March to stop it. Penelope, a bookworm who lives in the ramshackle house with her brother, Miles. The girl with the mom who disappeared, the girl who everyone ignores. When Penelope meets someone who seems to know secrets not only about Glacier Cove but about Penelope herself, she and Miles are pulled into an ancient mystery. Give to fans of Pseudononymous Bosch and Chris Grabenstein. Booklist recommends this for grades 4-7. Mystery.
The Wild Book (Juan Villoro, trans. by Lawrence Schimel)
Originally published in Mexico, 2008. Juan's parents are separating, and now he has to go live with his strange uncle Tito. Shy and wary, Juan starts to explore Tito’s enormous library, which is unlike any Juan has ever seen: the books are arranged in strange sections like "Motors That Make No Noise,” "Cheeses That Stink But Taste Delicious,” and "How to Govern Without Being President," and some of them seem to change location each time you look for them. In fact, Tito tells him that a book finds a reader when it’s needed, and not the other way around. Soon, Tito lets his nephew in on a secret: Juan is a Princeps Reader, to whom books respond in a very special way, and Tito needs his help finding a special volume called The Wild Book, which has never allowed itself to be read. Kirkus and Booklist both recommend this for Grades 4-7. Fantasy.


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

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