Book review

January Anticipated releases

January 7


ISBN 9781499810066, 1499810067

Pages : 272

Genre : MG fiction
Angelica (Jelly for short) is the queen of comedy at school. She has a personality as big as she is, and everyone loves her impressions. But Jelly isn’t as confident as she pretends to be. No one knows her deepest thoughts and feelings. She keeps those hidden away in a secret notebook.
Then her mom’s new boyfriend, Lennon, arrives. He’s kind and perceptive, and he is the first person to realize that Jelly is playing a part. Jelly shares her poetry with him and he convinces her to perform one of her poems as a song at the school talent show. Can Jelly risk letting people see the real her? What if it all goes wrong?

Woven in Moonlight

YA fantasy

384 pages
Ximena is the decoy Condesa, a stand-in for the last remaining Illustrian royal. Her people lost everything when the usurper, Atoc, used an ancient relic to summon ghosts and drive the Illustrians from La Ciudad. Now Ximena’s motivated by her insatiable thirst for revenge, and her rare ability to spin thread from moonlight.
When Atoc demands the real Condesa’s hand in marriage, it’s Ximena’s duty to go in her stead. Using the opportunity to get close to Atoc, she can steal his relic and return the true aristócrata to their rightful place. But a masked vigilante, a warm-hearted princess, and a thoughtful healer challenge Ximena, and her mission becomes more complicated. There could be a way to overthrow the usurper without starting another war, but only if Ximena turns her back on revenge—and her Condesa

Loveboat , Taipei

Our cousins have done this program,” Sophie whispers. “Best kept secret. Zero supervision.

And just like that, Ever Wong’s summer takes an unexpected turn. Gone is Chien Tan, the strict, educational program in Taiwan that Ever was expecting. In its place, she finds Loveboat: a summer-long free-for-all where hookups abound, adults turn a blind eye, snake-blood sake flows abundantly, and the nightlife runs nonstop.

But not every student is quite what they seem:

Ever is working toward becoming a doctor but nurses a secret passion for dance.

Rick Woo is the Yale-bound, child-prodigy bane of Ever’s existence whose perfection hides a secret.

Boy-crazy, fashion-obsessed Sophie Ha turns out to have more to her than meets the eye.

And under sexy Xavier Yeh’s shell is buried a shameful truth he’ll never admit.

When these students’ lives collide, it’s guaranteed to be a summer Ever will never forget.

Unmapped Chronicles

ISBN 9781534443075, 153444307X

Pages : 384

Genre : MG fantasy / Fiction
Casper Tock hates risks and is allergic to adventures. So it comes as a nasty shock to him one day when he hides from bullies in an ancient grandfather clock—and ends up finding an entire world inside.
Casper discovers that this sky kingdom of Rumblestar is one of the four Unmapped Kingdoms in charge of controlling the weather in Casper’s own world. What’s more, Casper is now stuck in Rumblestar, and the only person there who doesn’t think he’s a demon spy is a strange girl named Utterly, who hates rules and is allergic to behaving.
All Casper wants is to find his way home, but Rumblestar is in trouble. An evil harpy called Morg is trying to steal the magic of the Unmapped Kingdoms. And if these kingdoms fall, Casper’s world will be destroyed as well.

Josie Bloom and the emergency of life

ISBN 9781534444270, 1534444270
January 7th
288 pages
Josie Bloom discovers the first wad of money stuffed inside a packet of bologna, and the second hidden between the trash can and the bin liner. That money comes in handy when she finds the PAST DUE notice from the heating company. Seems like Grandpa has been spending more time feeding squirrels than paying the bills. But when a bill arrives that’s too big to handle, Josie’s going to need a plan to get more money—while keeping Grandpa’s odd behavior a secret.

ISBN 9781454935704, 1454935707

Pages – 272

Genre : MG Fiction / Performing Arts

Seventh-grader Martin McLean has always been surrounded by people who can express themselves. His mother is an artist, his colorful Tío Billy works in theater, and his best friends Carmen and Pickle are outgoing and don’t care what other people think. But Martin can only find the right words when he’s answering a problem at a Mathletes competition—until his tío introduces him to the world of drag. In a swirl of sequins and stilettos, Martin creates his fabulous drag queen alter ego, Lottie León. As Lottie, he is braver than he’s ever been; but as Martin, he doesn’t have the guts to tell anyone outside of his family about her. Not Carmen and Pickle, not his Mathletes teammates, and definitely not Chris, an eighth-grader who gives Martin butterflies. When Martin discovers that his first-ever drag show is the same night as the most important Mathletes tournament, he realizes that he can only pull off both appearances by revealing his true self to his friends—and channeling his inner drag superstar.

Hollow Dolls


ISBN 9781492688198, 1492688193

Pages : 272

Genre : MG fiction / fantasy
Simone is a mind-reader. She knows many things, but she can’t seem to remember anything about her past. So when she gets the chance to search for her family, she sets off to find her home.
When she stumbles across a man with two minds inside him—the real one, shoved deep down, and one of a body walker, someone who can take over a person’s body against their will—Simone is even more eager to leave her old life behind.
As Simone dives deeper into her history, she learns truths she never could have imagined. But as those she loves start disappearing around her, Simone knows only she can stop the evil before it’s too late.

The Night Country


ISBN 9781250246073, 1250246075

Pages : 352

Genre – Young Adult Fiction / Contemporary / Fairy Tales & Folklore / Fantasy / Dark Fantasy
In The Night Country, Alice Proserpine dives back into a menacing, mesmerizing world of dark fairy tales and hidden doors. Follow her and Ellery Finch as they learn The Hazel Wood was just the beginning, and that worlds die not with a whimper, but a bang.
With Finch’s help, Alice escaped the Hinterland and her reclusive grandmother’s dark legacy. Now she and the rest of the dregs of the fairy tale world have washed up in New York City, where Alice is trying to make a new, unmagical life. But something is stalking the Hinterland’s survivors—and she suspects their deaths may have a darker purpose. Meanwhile, in the winking out world of the Hinterland, Finch seeks his own adventure, and—if he can find it—a way back home…

Jan – 14

Infinity Son

ISBN 9780062457820, 0062457829

Pages : 368

Genre : Young Adult Fiction / Fantasy

Ever since they were young, brothers Emil and Brighton have idolized the Spell Walkers—a vigilante group sworn to protect the world from specters. While the Spell Walkers and other celestials were born with supernatural powers, specters take them, violently stealing the essence of endangered magical creatures. A gang of specters is growing bolder by the day, and the fear they sow is making it harder for anyone with powers to live peacefully and openly in the world.

Shortly after their eighteenth birthday, Emil and Brighton are attacked by a specter, and, in trying to defend his brother, Emil manifests a power that shouldn’t be possible: phoenix fire—a power that only a specter could have.

Convinced that he is the key to finally ending the war, the Spell Walkers want Emil to join their ranks, and they’re willing to take Brighton too if that’s his condition. For Brighton—even if he’s powerless—the chance to fight specters with his heroes is a dream come true. For Emil, the constant fighting—and the painful new power—is a waking nightmare. Much as they hate to admit it, the brothers are faced with an undeniable fact: one of them has what it takes to be a hero, but it’s not the one who desperately wants it.

Pixie pushes on

ISBN 9780525515166, 052551516X

Pages : 240

Genre : MG fiction / family
Pixie’s defenses are up, and it’s no wonder. She’s been uprooted, the chickens seem to have it in for her, and now her beloved sister, Charlotte, has been stricken with polio and whisked away into quarantine. So it’s not surprising Pixie lashes out. But her habit of making snap judgements—and giving her classmates nicknames like “Rotten Ricky” and “Big-Mouth Berta”—hasn’t won her any friends. At least life on the farm is getting better with the delivery of its newest resident—a runt baby lamb. Raising Buster takes patience and understanding—and this slowing down helps Pixie put things in better perspective. So too does paying attention to her neighbors, and finding that with the war on she’s not the only one missing someone. As Pixie pushes past her own pain to become a bigger person, she’s finally able to make friends; and to laugh about the fact that it is in places where she least expected it

Dark and Deepest Red

ISBN 9781250162748, 1250162742

Pages : 320

Genre : YA fiction / romance / retelling

Summer, 1518. A strange sickness sweeps through Strasbourg: women dance in the streets, some until they fall down dead. As rumors of witchcraft spread, suspicion turns toward Lavinia and her family, and Lavinia may have to do the unimaginable to save herself and everyone she loves.

Five centuries later, a pair of red shoes seal to Rosella’s feet, making her dance uncontrollably. They draw her toward a boy who knows the dancing fever’s history better than anyone: Emil, whose family was blamed for the fever years ago. But there’s more to what happened in 1518 than even Emil knows, and discovering the truth may decide whether Rosella survives the red shoes.

The thief knot

ISBN 9781328466891, 1328466892

464 pages

Marzana and her best friend are bored. Even though they live in a notorious city where normal rules do not apply, nothing interesting ever happens to them. Nothing, that is, until Marzana’s parents are recruited to help solve an odd crime, and she realizes that this could be the excitement she’s been waiting for. She assembles a group of kid detectives with special skills—including the ghost of a ship captain’s daughter—and together, they explore hidden passageways, navigate architecture that changes overnight, and try to unravel the puzzle of who the kidnappers are—and where they’re hiding. But will they beat the deadline for a ransom that’s impossible to pay?

Legendary smugglers, suspicious teachers, and some scary bad guys are just a few of the adults the crew must circumvent while discovering hidden truths about their families and themselves in this smart, richly imagined tale

Race to the sun

Lately, seventh grader Nizhoni Begay has been able to detect monsters, like that man in the fancy suit who was in the bleachers at her basketball game. Turns out he’s Mr. Charles, her dad’s new boss at the oil and gas company, and he’s alarmingly interested in Nizhoni and her brother, Mac, their Navajo heritage, and the legend of the Hero Twins. Nizhoni knows he’s a threat, but her father won’t believe her.
When Dad disappears the next day, leaving behind a message that says “Run!”, the siblings and Nizhoni’s best friend, Davery, are thrust into a rescue mission that can only be accomplished with the help of Diné Holy People, all disguised as quirky characters. Their aid will come at a price: the kids must pass a series of trials in which it seems like nature itself is out to kill them. If Nizhoni, Mac, and Davery can reach the House of the Sun, they will be outfitted with what they need to defeat the ancient monsters Mr. Charles has unleashed. But it will take more than weapons for Nizhoni to become the hero she was destined to be . . .

From the desk of Zoe Washington

Dear Marcus…
Zoe Washington isn’t sure what to write next. What does a girl say to the father she’s never met, she hadn’t heard from until his letter arrived on her twelfth birthday, and who’s been in prison for a terrible crime? A crime he says he never committed.
Could Marcus really be innocent? Zoe’s determined to uncover the truth. Even if it means hiding his letters from her mom and stepdad. Everyone thinks Zoe’s worrying about doing a good job at her bakery internship and proving to her parents that she’s worthy of auditioning for Food Network’s Kids Bake Challenge! It’s Zoe’s dream to become a star baker, and she can’t afford to mess anything up.
But with bakery confections on one part of her mind and Marcus’s conviction weighing heavily on the other, this is one recipe Zoe doesn’t know how to balance. The only thing she knows to be true: everyone lies.

Jan 21

Given

Yenni has never been this far from home. With only her wits, her strength, and her sacred runelore, the fierce Yirba warrior princess is alone in the Empire of Cresh. It’s a land filled with strange magics and even stranger people—all of whom mistrust anyone who’s different. But Yenni will prove herself, and find the cure for her father’s wasting illness. She will not fail.

No one warned her about the dragons. Especially not about him.

Yet there is something powerful and compelling about the violet-black dragon known as Weysh. In human form he’s muscular, beautiful—and completely infuriating. What kind of arrogant creature claims a stranger as his Given; as his destined mate? Yenni is no man’s—or dragon’s—plaything. But other magics must be at work here, because Weysh might just be her best hope at finding the answers she seeks.

Only now Yenni can’t tell if she’s fighting an attraction to a dragon . . . or fighting fate itself.

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