I’ve told this once and I’ll tell it again. MiddleGrade genre itself is underrated . This list will feature the book releases I’ve come across which features PoC protagonists (most have them in the covers itself and will you look at this?!!!!!).
Release date : September 3
Pages : 208
Summary :All Amara wants is to visit her father’s family in Harlem. Her wish comes true when her dad decides to bring her along on a business trip. She can’t wait to finally meet her extended family and stay in the brownstone where her dad grew up. Plus, she wants to visit every landmark from the Apollo to Langston Hughes’s home.
But her family, and even the city, is not quite what Amara thought. Her dad doesn’t speak to her grandpa, and the crowded streets can be suffocating as well as inspiring. But as she learns more and more about Harlem—and her father’s history—Amara realizes how, in some ways more than others, she can connect with this other home and family.
This is a powerful story about family, the places that make us who we are, and how we find ways to connect to our history across time and distance
ISBN 9780062473073, 0062473077
SummaryPatricia “Sweet Pea” DiMarco wasn’t sure what to expect when her parents announced they were getting a divorce. She never could have imagined that they would have the “brilliant” idea of living in nearly identical houses on the same street. In the one house between them lives their eccentric neighbor Miss Flora Mae, the famed local advice columnist behind “Miss Flora Mae I?”
Dividing her time between two homes is not easy. And it doesn’t help that at school, Sweet Pea is now sitting right next to her ex–best friend, Kiera, a daily reminder of the friendship that once was. Things might be unbearable if Sweet Pea didn’t have Oscar—her new best friend—and her fifteen-pound cat, Cheese.
Then one day Flora leaves for a trip and asks Sweet Pea to forward her the letters for the column. Sweet Pea is able to contain her curiosity about them . . . until she recognizes the handwriting on one of the envelopes. What she decides to do with that letter sets off a chain of events that will forever change the lives of Sweet Pea DiMarco, her family, and many of the readers of “Miss Flora Mae I?”
Dear Sweet pea has an amazing day rep , and MC’s mother is a psychologist who’s a body positivity person. It has a great premise combined with bullying , body positivity, small town living and great friendship.
Lalani and the distant Sea
ISBN : 9780062747273, 0062747274
Pages : 400
Genre : Juvenile Fiction / Fantasy/ Magic
Summary :Life is difficult on the island of Sanlagita. To the west looms a vengeful mountain, one that threatens to collapse and bury the village at any moment. To the north, a dangerous fog swallows sailors who dare to venture out, looking for a more hospitable land. The women live in fear of the deadly mender’s disease, spread by the sharp needles they use to repair the men’s fishing nets. And what does the future hold for young girls? Mending and more mending.
When Lalani Sarita’s mother pricks her finger and falls ill, she gives twelve-year-old Lalani an impossible task—leave Sanlagita and find the riches of the legendary Mount Isa, which towers on an island to the north. But generations of men and boys have died on the same quest—how can a timid young girl survive the epic tests of the archipelago? And how will she manage without Veyda, her best friend?Middle Grade fantasy debut inspired by Filipino worldbuilding
Best at it
ISBN 9780062866417, 0062866419
Release : October 8
Rahul Kapoor is heading into seventh grade in a small town in Indiana. The start of middle school is making him feel increasingly anxious, so his favorite person in the whole world, his grandfather, Bhai, gives him some well-meaning advice.
Find one thing you’re really good at and become the BEST at it.Those four little words sear themselves into Rahul’s brain. While he’s not quite sure what that special thing is, he is convinced that once he finds it, bullies like Brent Mason will stop torturing him at school. And he won’t be worried about staring too long at his classmate Justin Emery. With his best friend, Chelsea, by his side, Rahul is ready to crush this challenge…. But what if he discovers he isn’t the best at anything?
More to the story
More to the Story
ISBN 9781481492096, 1481492098
Summary :When Jameela Mirza is picked to be feature editor of her middle school newspaper, she’s one step closer to being an award-winning journalist like her late grandfather. The problem is her editor-in-chief keeps shooting down her article ideas. Jameela’s assigned to write about the new boy in school, who has a cool British accent but doesn’t share much, and wonders how she’ll make his story gripping enough to enter into a national media contest.Jameela, along with her three sisters, is devastated when their father needs to take a job overseas, away from their cozy Georgia home for six months. Missing him makes Jameela determined to write an epic article—one to make her dad extra proud. But when her younger sister gets seriously ill, Jameela’s world turns upside down. And as her hunger for fame looks like it might cost her a blossoming friendship, Jameela questions what matters most and whether she’s cut out to be a journalist at all…Inspired by Little women , more to the story follows Jameela and her four sisters , a Muslim American family and explores ambition , love and sacrifice.
Nina Soni former best friend
ISBN 9781682630570, 1682630579
Juvenile Fiction / Social Themes /Friendship
The first title in a new series featuring a lovable, distractible Indian-American girl and her family and friends.
Nina tried as hard as she could, but still somehow she forgot about her school project. Fortunately, a class lesson about Alexander Fleming suggests how she might make a great discovery—and thus a great project! But with little sister Kavita’s birthday party right around the corner, and her longtime friendship with Jay on the rocks, Nina has a lot to keep track of.The first title in a new series featuring a lovable, distractible Indian-American girl and her family and friends by ownvoice author.
Under the Broken Sky
ISBN 9781250159212, 1250159210304 pagesOctober 15thSummaryTwelve-year-old Natsu and her family live a quiet farm life in Manchuria, near the border of the Soviet Union. But the life they’ve known begins to unravel when her father is recruited to the Japanese army, and Natsu and her little sister, Cricket, are left orphaned and destitute. In a desperate move to keep her sister alive, Natsu sells Cricket to a Russian family following the 1945 Soviet occupation. The journey to redemption for Natsu’s broken family is rife with struggles, but Natsu is tenacious and will stop at nothing to get her little sister back.An ownvoice book about a Japanese orphan’s experience in occupied rural Manchuria during World War II
The Everything I have lost
ISBN 9781947627185, 194762718
Summary :12-year-old Julia keeps a diary about her life growing up in Juarez, Mexico. Life in Juarez is strange. People say its the murder capital of the world. Dad’s gone a lot. They can’t play outside because it isn’t safe. Drug cartels rule the streets. Cars and people disappear, leaving behind pet cats. Then Dad disappears and Julia and her brother go live with her aunt in El Paso. What’s happened to her Dad? Julia wonders. Is he going to disappear forever?An ownvoice story set in today’s Mexico explores family and social issues.
ISBN 9780823437542, 082343754X
40 pagesThe octopus Grandma is cooking has grown to titanic proportions. “¡Tenga cuidado!” Ramsey shouts. “Be careful!” But it’s too late. The octopus traps Grandma!
Ramsey uses both art and intellect to free his beloved abuela.
Then the story takes a surprising twist. And it can be read two ways. Open the fold-out pages to find Ramsey telling a story to his family. Keep the pages folded, and Ramsey’s octopus adventure is real.This beautifully illustrated ownvoice picture book, drawn from the author’s childhood memories, celebrates creativity, heroism, family, grandmothers, grandsons, Puerto Rican food, Latinx culture and more.With an author’s note and the Velasquez family recipe for Octopus Stew!
Our Wayward Fate
Release : October 15th
Summary :Seventeen-year-old Ali Chu knows that as the only Asian person at her school in middle-of-nowhere Indiana, she must be bland as white toast to survive. This means swapping her congee lunch for PB&Js, ignoring the clueless racism from her classmates and teachers, and keeping her mouth shut when people wrongly call her Allie instead of her actual name,Ah-lee after the mountain in Taiwan.Her autopilot existence is disrupted when she finds out that Chase Yu, the new kid in school, is also Taiwanese. Despite some initial resistance due to the they belong together whispers, Ali and Chase soon spark a chemistry rooted in competitive martial arts, joking in two languages, and, most importantly, pushing back against the discrimination they face.But when Ali’s mom finds out about the relationship, she forces Ali to end it. As Ali covertly digs into the behind her mother’s disapproval, she uncovers secrets about her family and Chase that force her to question everything she thought she knew about life, love, and her unknowable future.Snippets of a love story from nineteenth-century China (a retelling of the Chinese folktale The Butterfly Lovers are interspersed with Ali’s narrative and intertwined with her fate.
Our wayward Fate is Young Adult. I’ve made the mistake of adding it to the list. But it’s a great book and consider adding it to your tbr
October 8, 2019
ISBN 9781481450256, 1481450255
Lu was born to be cocaptain of the Defenders. Well, actually, he was born albino, but that’s got nothing to do with being a track star. Lu has swagger, plus the talent to back it up, and with all that—not to mention the gold chains and diamond earrings—no one’s gonna outshine him.
Lu knows he can lead Ghost, Patina, Sunny, and the team to victory at the championships, but it might not be as easy as it seems. Suddenly, there are hurdles in Lu’s way—literally and not-so-literally—and Lu needs to figure out, fast, what winning the gold really means. Expect the unexpected in this final event in Jason Reynold’s award-winning series.
Lexi Magill and the teleportation tournament
ISBN 9780762466986, 0762466987
SummaryTwelve-year-old physics whiz Lexi Magill won’t let anything stop her from winning Wisconsin’s Teleportation Tournament–the annual competition where teams teleport around the world to solve science-based puzzles. She needs the prize money if she wants to re-enroll in the science academy her parents can no longer afford. Added bonus: she’ll be able to reconnect with her best friend Haley.
But Lexi’s two teammates put a wrench in her plans. When one misreads a clue that lands the team in a castle in Germany, and the other loses her teleportation medallion in Poland, Lexi wonders what she’s gotten herself into. Struggling to keep her team under control as the race rages on, Lexi not only has to figure out how to get back on course (literally), but she must decide how far she’s willing to go to win, and who her real friends are. With riddles to solve and messages to decode, this interactive read won’t disappoint.
That’s it I gathered for now. Have you read any of these? Do you know about any book I missed out?
4 thoughts on “12 diverse MG releases to look out in 2019”
HECK YES MIDDLE GRADE IS SO UNDERRATED. I haven’t read any of these (or heard of most), though I do have my copy of Our Wayward Fate to read (which I should very soon and actually download to my iPad). I’m also excited for The Dragon Warrior by Katie Zhao.
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Yes! Dragon Warrior is amazing but Riordan presents give a great deal of hype . These books are written by amazing (even famous like Julie Murphy) but never get the enough attention! Thanks for reading my post Soph
Oooooh, I am adding so many of these to my tbr, I always forget to look at Middle-Grade books until I’m either in a bookstore or someone presents some awesome books as you did. I really want to read Lalani of the Distant Sea, last MG book I read was The Wild Book and loved it.
Under the Broken Sky and Dear Sweet Pea look so cute! I’ve added them to my TBR and saved this post for when I decide to do an MG month 😀 I’m thinking of branching out a bit! Great post ❤ Jen