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Stars of the Season - Junior Readers

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We Could Be Heroes Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781534445253
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atheneum Books for Young Readers - February 25th, 2020

Shiloh meets Raymie Nightingale in this funny and heartwarming debut novel about a ten-year-old that finds himself in a whole mess of trouble when his new friend Maisie recruits him to save the dog next door.

Hank Hudson is in a bit of trouble. After an incident involving the boy’s bathroom and a terribly sad book his teacher is forcing them to read, Hank is left with a week’s suspension and a slightly charred hardcover—and, it turns out, the attention of new girl Maisie Huang.

Maisie has been on the lookout for a kid with the meatballs to help her with a very important mission: Saving her neighbor’s dog, Booler. Booler has seizures, and his owner, Mr. Jorgensen, keeps him tied to a tree all day and night because of them. It’s enough to make Hank even sadder than that book does—he has autism, and he knows what it’s like to be treated poorly because of something that makes you different.

But different is not less. And Hank is willing to get into even more trouble to prove it. Soon he and Maisie are lying, brown-nosing, baking, and cow milking all in the name of saving Booler—but not everything is as it seems. Booler might not be the only one who needs saving. And being a hero can look a lot like being a friend.

Ages 8-12


A Wish in the Dark Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781536204940
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick - March 24th, 2020

A boy on the run. A girl determined to find him. A compelling fantasy looks at issues of privilege, protest, and justice.

All light in Chattana is created by one man — the Governor, who appeared after the Great Fire to bring peace and order to the city. For Pong, who was born in Namwon Prison, the magical lights represent freedom, and he dreams of the day he will be able to walk among them. But when Pong escapes from prison, he realizes that the world outside is no fairer than the one behind bars. The wealthy dine and dance under bright orb light, while the poor toil away in darkness. Worst of all, Pong’s prison tattoo marks him as a fugitive who can never be truly free.

Nok, the prison warden’s perfect daughter, is bent on tracking Pong down and restoring her family’s good name. But as Nok hunts Pong through the alleys and canals of Chattana, she uncovers secrets that make her question the truths she has always held dear. Set in a Thai-inspired fantasy world, Christina Soontornvat’s twist on Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables is a dazzling, fast-paced adventure that explores the difference between law and justice — and asks whether one child can shine a light in the dark.

Ages 9-12


The Mysterious Messenger Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781250205674
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) - July 21st, 2020

The Mysterious Messenger is a rich middle grade urban fantasy debut starring young psychic Maria de la Cruz, by the award-winning artist Gilbert Ford.

Eleven-year-old Maria de la Cruz is trapped under the thumb of Madame Destine, her pseudo-psychic mother. Destine is a bona fide con artist who will stop at nothing to swindle her customers into believing she can communicate with the dead. But Maria, unlike her mother, has a big secret—she really can communicate with the dead, most frequently with a ghost named Edward who has been her only friend since she was a child.

It’s not long before this clairvoyant young sleuth gets wrapped up in an epic journey that combines bookish mystery with the literary movement of the Beat poets and art and jazz history. Maria may have the power to unlock extraordinary secrets, but can she find the treasure Edward sends her clues about? More importantly, can she find true friendship?

This smart, big-hearted debut novel is perfect for fans of Book ScavengerWinterhouse, and The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street.

Ages 8-12


City of Secrets Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9780593114490
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Viking Books for Young Readers - July 28th, 2020

Read the graphic novel that Caldecott medal-winning illustrator, Dan Santat, calls, "An edge-of-your-seat thriller!"

Ever Barnes is a shy orphan guarding a secret in an amazing puzzle box of a building.

Most of the young women who work at the building's Switchboard Operating Facility, which connects the whole city of Oskar, look the other way as Ever roams around in the shadows. But one of them, Lisa, keeps an eye on the boy. So does the head of the Switchboard, Madame Alexander . . . a rather sharp eye.

Enter Hannah, the spunky daughter of the building's owner. She thinks Ever needs a friend, even if he doesn't know it yet.

Good thing she does!

Lisa and Madame Alexander are each clearly up to something.

Ever is beset by a menacing band of rogues looking to unlock the secret he holds--at any cost.

And whatever is hidden deep in the Switchboard building will determine all of their futures.

On a journey that twists and turns as much as the mechanical building Ever Barnes calls home, he and his new friend Hannah have to ­ and out what's really going on in this mysterious city of secrets . . . or else!

Ages 8-12


Quintessence Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780374309763
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) - July 28th, 2020

Quintessence is an extraordinary story from Jess Redman about friendship, self-discovery, interconnectedness, and the inexplicable elements that make you you.

Find the Elements. Grow the Light. Save the Starling.

Three months ago, twelve-year-old Alma moved to the town of Four Points. Her panic attacks started a week later, and they haven’t stopped—even though she’s told her parents that they have. She’s homesick and friendless and every day she feels less and less like herself.

But one day she finds a telescope in the town’s junk shop, and through its lens, she watches a star—a star that looks like a child—fall from the sky and into her backyard. Alma knows what it’s like to be lost and afraid, to long for home, and she knows that it’s up to her to save the star. And so, with the help of some unlikely new friends from Astronomy Club, she sets out on a quest that will take a little bit of science, a little bit of magic, and her whole self.

Ages 8-12


Star Wars Dark Legends Cover Image
By George Mann, Grant Griffin (Illustrator)
$14.99
ISBN: 9781368057332
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Disney Lucasfilm Press - July 28th, 2020

Read on if you dare! This unique in-world collection hallows the spooky tales and ghost stories that would have kept young Luke and Leia up at night. Created by George Mann and Grant Griffin--the same team behind the stunning Star Wars: Myths & Fables--these seven frightful fables have been carefully woven from the expansive fabric that is the Star Wars galaxy (including the thrilling landscape from Galaxy's Edge at Disneyland and Disney World), and beautifully painted in a lush illustrative style that feels intergalactic yet innately archetypal and timeless.

Ages 8-12


Rebecca Rides for Freedom: An American Revolution Survival Story Cover Image
$7.95
ISBN: 9781496599100
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Stone Arch Books - August 1st, 2020

The American Revolution is raging in Philadelphia, and Rebecca is determined to do all she can to help. With her father stationed with Washington's army at nearby Whitemarsh, it's up to Rebecca to help her mother at home with her younger siblings. That includes selling vegetables to British officers stationed in wealthy houses nearby. When Rebecca intercepts a message about an impending British attack against the Patriots from one such house, she knows she has to act. It's up to her to get the message to the Patriot army - before it's too late.

Ages 8-12


Once Upon a Unicorn Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781524719449
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Crown Books for Young Readers - August 25th, 2020

A science-minded unicorn and a (literal) fiery horse team up in this fantasy adventure perfect for fans of Fablehaven and the Wizards of Once series.

Have you ever heard of a unicorn who is more interested in science experiments than magic?

Or a flaming horse who's a walking fire hazard?

When a pumpkin-headed menace called Jack o' the Hunt and monsters untold threaten their home, this unlikely pair must team up to save all of the Whisperwood--and themselves!

Award-winner Lou Anders delivers a fantasy adventure about friendship, fearlessness, and finding your true herd.

Ages 8-12


Lightfall: The Girl & the Galdurian Cover Image
By Tim Probert, Tim Probert (Illustrator)
$12.99
ISBN: 9780062990464
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: HarperAlley - September 1st, 2020

For fans of Amulet and middle grade readers who love sweeping worlds like Star Wars, the first book of the Lightfall series introduces Bea and Cad, two unlikely friends who get swept up in an epic quest to save their world from falling into eternal darkness.

Deep in the heart of the planet Irpa stands the Salty Pig’s House of Tonics & Tinctures, home of the wise Pig Wizard and his adopted granddaughter, Bea. As keepers of the Endless Flame, they live a quiet and peaceful life, crafting medicines and potions for the people of their once-prosperous world.

All that changes one day when, while walking through the woods, Bea meets Cad, a member of the Galdurians, an ancient race thought to be long-extinct. Cad believes that if anyone can help him find his missing people, it’s the Pig Wizard.

But when the two arrive home, the Pig Wizard is nowhere to be found—all that’s left is the Jar of Endless Flame and a mysterious note. Fearing for the Pig Wizard’s safety, Bea and Cad set out across Irpa to find him, while danger fights its way out of the shadows and into the light.

Will these two unexpected friends find the beloved Pig Wizard and prevent eternal darkness from blanketing their world? Or has Irpa truly seen its last sunrise?

Ages 8-12


The Silver Arrow Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780316539531
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - September 1st, 2020

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Magicians comes a must-read, wholly original middle-grade debut perfect for fans of The Chronicles of Narnia and Roald Dahl.

Kate and her younger brother Tom lead dull, uninteresting lives. And if their dull, uninteresting parents are anything to go by, they don't have much to look forward to. Why can't Kate have thrilling adventures and save the world the way people do in books? Even her 11th birthday is shaping up to be mundane -- that is, until her mysterious and highly irresponsible Uncle Herbert, whom she's never even met before, surprises her with the most unexpected, exhilarating, inappropriate birthday present of all time: a colossal steam locomotive called the Silver Arrow.

Kate and Tom's parents want to send it right back where it came from. But Kate and Tom have other ideas -- and so does the Silver Arrow -- and soon they're off to distant lands along magical rail lines in the company of an assortment of exotic animals who, it turns out, can talk. With only curiosity, excitement, their own resourcefulness and the thrill of the unknown to guide them, Kate and Tom are on the adventure of a lifetime . . . and who knows? They just might end up saving the world after all.

This thrilling fantasy adventure will not only entertain young readers but inspire them to see the beautiful, exciting, and precious world around them with new eyes.

Ages 8-10


One Time Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062570741
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: HarperCollins - September 8th, 2020

From Sharon Creech, Newbery Medal winner and New York Times bestselling author, comes a powerful coming-of-age story of a girl who discovers the endless possibilities her future may hold, with help from a brilliant teacher and a boy with a generous smile.

Perfect for fans of Love That Dog, this tale is about the transformative power of imagination and the journey to becoming who you are meant to be. This middle grade novel is an excellent choice for tween readers in grades 5 to 6, at home or at school. It’s a fun way to keep your child entertained and engaged while not in the classroom.

Gina Filomena has been told she has an overactive imagination. With her bright clothing and artistic spirit, she’s always felt different from the other kids in her class. That is, until she meets her new neighbor, a mysterious boy named Antonio with a wide, welcoming smile.

Add in a creative new teacher, Miss Lightstone, and a world of possibilities opens up for Gina, Antonio, and their classmates. With the help of Antonio and Miss Lightstone, will Gina find the answers to the questions Who am I? and Who do I want to be?

Ages 9-12


The Clockwork Crow Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781536214918
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Walker Books US - September 8th, 2020

Evoking the classic fantasy adventures of Joan Aiken and Eva Ibbotson, this darkly delightful new novel from New York Times best-selling author Catherine Fisher glimmers with winter magic.

Orphan Seren Rhys is on her way to a new life at the remote country mansion of Plas-y Fran when she is given a package by a stranger late at night in an empty train station. The package contains a crotchety, mechanical talking crow, which Seren reluctantly brings to her new home. But when she gets there, the happy Christmas she had hoped for turns out to be an illusion—the young son of the house, Tomos, has been missing for almost a year, rumored to have been taken by the fairies. With the Crow’s reluctant help and a little winter magic, Seren sets off on a perilous journey to bring Tomos home. An enthralling story of family and belonging set in frost-bound Victorian Wales.

Ages 9-12


Little Bird Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062996893
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Greenwillow Books - September 15th, 2020

Celebrated Newbery Medalist Cynthia Voigt introduces Little Bird, a tiny crow with a big imagination and an even bigger heart, in this timeless read-alone and read-aloud just right for the young middle grade audience. Little Bird features black-and-white illustrations by Newbery Medalist Lynne Rae Perkins throughout.

When a wild fisher cat attacks their nest, Little Bird and her flock are devastated. Not only does the fisher cat harm the fledglings, but it also makes off with the shiny pendant that the superstitious crows rely on for good luck. Little Bird believes that she can find the lucky pendant and return it to the nest before disaster strikes. The other crows aren’t so sure—after all, Little Bird is so little and undependable and meek.

But with the help of some new friends—including a very funny goat—Little Bird journeys through forests and over lakes and fields, challenging her wits and survival skills along the way. The crow who returns home is wiser, braver, kinder, and ready—at last—to spread her wings.

Newbery Medalist Cynthia Voigt’s gentle humor, sense of fun and adventure, and delightful main character sing off the page in this timely short novel about bravery and friendship, illustrated by Newbery Medalist Lynne Rae Perkins. A page-turning read-aloud for families and classrooms, and a terrific book for fans of Nuts to You, by Lynne Rae Perkins, and Avi’s Poppy books.

Ages 8-12


Fly on the Wall Cover Image
By Remy Lai, Remy Lai (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9781250314116
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) - September 15th, 2020

In Fly on the Wall, a moving and hilarious diary-style illustrated novel from the award-winning author of Pie in the Sky, a twelve-year-old boy goes on a (forbidden) solo adventure halfway around the world to prove his independence to his overprotective family.

Henry Khoo's family treats him like a baby. He’s not allowed to go anywhere without his sister/chaperone/bodyguard. And he definitely CAN’T take a journey halfway around the world all by himself!

But that’s exactly his plan. After his family’s annual trip to visit his father in Singapore is cancelled, Henry decides he doesn’t want to be cooped up at home with his overprotective family and BFF turned NRFF (Not Really Friend Forever). Plus, he’s hiding a your-life-is-over-if-you’re-caught secret: he’s the creator of an anonymous gossip cartoon, and he's on the verge of getting caught. Determined to prove his independence and avoid punishment for his crimes, Henry embarks on the greatest adventure everrr. . . hoping it won’t turn into the greatest disaster ever.

Remy Lai takes readers on an adventure filled with humor, heart, and hijinks that’s a sure bet for fans of Jerry Craft, Terri Libenson, and Shannon Hale!

Ages 9-12


Saucy Cover Image
By Cynthia Kadohata, Marianna Raskin (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781442412781
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books - September 29th, 2020

From Newbery Medalist and National Book Award–winning author Cynthia Kadohata comes an irrepressible and heartwarming story about a girl and her ever-growing pig, Saucy—perfect for fans of The One and Only Ivan and Flora & Ulysses!

Being a quadruplet can make it hard to stand out from the crowd. Becca’s three brothers all have something that makes them...them. Jake has his music and dancing, Jammer plays hockey, and K.C. thinks they’re all living in a simulation and doesn’t see the point of doing much of anything. Becca is the only one with nothing to make her special.

But when she finds a tiny, sick piglet on the side of the road, Becca knows this is it. This is her thing. She names the piglet Saucy and between her own pleading and Saucy’s sweet, pink face, Becca convinces her family to take her in. Soon, Saucy is as big a part of the family as anyone else—and getting bigger. With each pound Saucy gains, the more capable she becomes of destroying the house and landing Becca in trouble.

Some tough decisions need to be made about Becca’s pet, and her search for solutions brings to light exactly where Saucy came from. Turns out, there are a lot more scared piglets out there, and saving them may take Becca and her brothers finally doing something together.

Ages 8-12