Tuesday, October 16, 2018

New Releases for Kids and Teens: October 16, 2018

Finally, a small break in the number of new releases this week! This week's list is about half as long as it was in each week of September and early-October. Two titles really grab my attention this week. The first is A Very Large Expanse of Sea by Tahereh Mafi. It's about a Muslim-American girl facing discrimination and stereotypes in the year following 9/11. The other title that I can't wait to see is Something Rotten: A Fresh Look at Roadkill, which reminds me of a science version of How They Croaked.

NOTE: Titles highlighted in purple are those that received two or more starred professional reviews.

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A Very Large Expanse of Sea (Tahereh Mafi)
It's 2002, a year after 9/11. It's an extremely turbulent time politically, but especially so for someone like Shirin, a sixteen-year-old Muslim girl who's tired of being stereotyped. Shirin is never surprised by how horrible people can be. She's tired of the rude stares, the degrading comments--even the physical violence--she endures as a result of her race, her religion, and the hijab she wears every day. So she's built up protective walls and refuses to let anyone close enough to hurt her. But then she meets Ocean James, the first person in forever who really seems to want to get to know Shirin. Recommended for Grades 9-12. SLJ and Booklist starred. Realistic fiction, romance, Muslim-Americans.
Glimmer of Hope: How Tragedy Sparked a Movement (The March for Our Lives Founders)
Tells the story of how a group of teenagers raced to channel their rage and sorrow into action, and went on to create one of the largest youth-led movements in global history. 100% of the authors' proceeds will benefit the March for Our Lives Foundation and the ongoing fight for gun violence prevention in the United States. Recommended for Grades 9-12. Booklist starred. Narrative nonfiction, memoir, gun violence.
The Oyster Thief (Sonia Faruqi)
Coralline is a mermaid who is engaged to the merman of her dreams. But when an oil spill wreaks havoc on her idyllic village life, her little brother falls gravely ill. Desperate to save him, she embarks on aquest to find a legendary elixir made of starlight. Izar, a human man, is on the cusp of an invention that will enable him to mine the depths of the ocean. But Izar suddenly finds himself transformed into a merman and caught in a web of betrayal and intrigue. Meeting Coralline in the ocean, he decides to join her on her quest for the elixir, hoping it will turn him human again. Recommended for adults, but Library Journal mentions "YA crossover appeal" in their review. Fantasy, romance, mermaids.
Home and Away (Candice Montgomery)
Tasia Quirk is young, black, and fabulous. She's a senior, she's got great friends, and a supportive and wealthy family. She even plays football as the only girl on her private high school's team. But when she catches her mamma trying to stuff a mysterious box in the closet, her identity is suddenly called into question. Now Tasia's determined to unravel the lies that have overtaken her life. Recommended for Grades 9-12. Kirkus starred. Realistic fiction.
Period Power: A Manifesto for the Menstrual Movement (Nadya Okamoto)
Throughout history, periods have been hidden from the public. They’re taboo. They’re embarrassing. They’re gross. And due to a crumbling or nonexistent national sex ed program, they are misunderstood. Because of these stigmas, a status quo has been established to exclude people who menstruate from the seat at the decision-making table, creating discriminations like the tampon tax, medicines that favor male biology, and more. This book aims to explain what menstruation is, shed light on the stigmas and resulting biases, and create a strategy to end the silence and prompt conversation about periods. Recommended for Grades 8-12. Kirkus starred. Nonfiction, menstruation.
Easy Prey (Catherine Lo)
Only three students had access to a teacher's racy photos before they went viral. There's Mouse, a brainy overachiever so desperate to escape his father and go to MIT that he would do almost anything, legal or not. Then there's Drew, the star athlete who can get any girl's number--and private photos--with his charm but has a history of passing those photos around. And finally there's Jenna, a good girl turned rebel after her own shocking photos made the rounds at school last year, who is still waiting for justice. All three deny leaking the photos, but someone has to take the fall. Recommended for Grades 9-12. Realistic fiction, sexting.
Phantom Wheel (Tracy Deebs)
Being recruited by the CIA to join a top-secret intelligence program should be the opportunity of a lifetime. For Issa, it's a shot at creating a new and better life for herself and her siblings. For clever con artist Harper, it's a chance to bury the secrets of her troubled past and make sure that those secrets stay buried. But for Owen--honor student, star quarterback, and computer-hacking genius--it sounds like a trap. He's right. Owen discovers that instead of auditioning for the CIA, they've all been tricked by a multibillion-dollar tech company into creating the ultimate computer virus. Recommended for Grades 9-12. Kirkus starred. Science fiction, adventure.
Conspiracy of Ravens (Leah Moore, John Reppion, Sally Jane Thompson)
Teen schoolgirl Anne unexpectedly inherits a mysterious locket and a crumbing English mansion estate from her long-lost aunt. She unearths the family secret that she's part of a magical legacy that gives her fantastic abilities, and she isn't the only girl whose family is involved. But not all the girls are so willing to use their new powers for good. Graphic novel, fantasy.


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Something Rotten: A Fresh Look at Roadkill (Heather L. Montgomery, Kevin O'Malley)
When Heather L. Montgomery sees a rattlesnake flattened on the side of the road, her first instinct is to pick it up and dissect it--she's always wanted to see how a snake's fangs retract when they close their mouths, and it's not exactly safe to poke around in a live reptile's mouth. A wildlife researcher with a special penchant for the animals that litter the roadways, Heather isn't satisfied with dissecting just one snake. Her fascination with roadkill sets her off on a journey from her own backyard and the roadways of the American South to scientists and kids in labs and homes across the globe. Recommended for Grades 4-8. Kirkus and SLJ starred. Narrative nonfiction, biology.
How We Got to Now: Six Innovations That Made the Modern World (Steven Johnson)
Did you drink a glass of water today? Did you turn on a light? Did you think about how miraculous either one of those things is when you did it? Of course not--but you should. This adaptation of Steven Johnson's adult book and PBS series explores the fascinating and interconnected stories of innovations--like clean drinking water and electricity--that changed the way people live. Recommended for Grades 5-8. Narrative nonfiction, STEAM, inventions.
I'm OK (Patti Kim)
Ok, a Korean American boy, tries a get rich quick scheme of starting a hair braiding business and winning the school talent competition to hide the fact that he is struggling with the loss of his father and the financial hardships he and his mother must now bear. Recommended for Grades 5-8. Realistic fiction, Korean Americans, financial difficulty.

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The Eleventh Hour (Jacques Goldstyn)
Jim and Jules are childhood friends, born on the same day in the same village. All their lives, Jim has been first -- born two minutes before Jules, always faster, always stronger. When the First World War breaks out in Europe, the two young men enlist in the fight with 30,000 other Canadians. Kirkus starred. WWI, military.
Grace for President (Kelly DiPucchio, LeUyen Pham)
When Grace's teacher reveals that the United States has never had a female president, Grace decides to be the first. And she immediately starts off her political career as a candidate the school's mock election! Booklist and Library Media Connection starred. Elections.

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

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