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Middle Grade Books

Look Both Ways: A Tale Told in Ten Blocks by Jason Reynolds

In 10 blocks, very different kids find themselves connected in strange and interesting ways. Dogs are avoided, comedy is tested, lists are made, and new love blossoms. Jason Reynolds’s way with words is enviable. Each kid is real and raw, dealing with issues most adults assume children can’t possibly have a grasp of. I took my time and savored every moment with this slim novel. Trust me, you will, too. - Ivy

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By Jason Reynolds, Alexander Nabaum (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781481438285
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books - October 8th, 2019

The Best at It by Maulik Pancholy

Middle-grade readers will find a relatable voice with Rahul, a seventh-grader in Indiana who’s having a hard time fitting in with his classmates. He has a support system in his friends and family but still deals with serious bullying. Despite tackling the heavy issue of bullying, this book is a very sweet look into being proud of you, because you’re the only one who’s going to be the best at it. - MJ

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$16.99
ISBN: 9780062866417
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Balzer + Bray - October 8th, 2019

Lalani of the Distant Sea by Erin Entrada Kelly

Newbery medalist Erin Entrada Kelly has conjured a vivid fantasy world inspired by Fillipino folklore, full of people and creatures wonderful and terrible. Lalani is an ordinary girl kept down by tradition and fear, but neither ordinariness nor being afraid will keep her from risking it all to save her home. The result is a wonderful, authentic adventure of dark currents and bright points perfect for lovers of fairy tales and of the fight for what is right. - Jocelyn

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$16.99
ISBN: 9780062747273
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Greenwillow Books - September 3rd, 2019

Strange Birds by Celia C. Pérez

Pérez transports readers to a summer of discovery with four girls as they develop into independent women, connect with their community, and realize how much they can impact their own futures and that of their community. This book is sure to please anyone looking for a realistic story of girl power and friendship. - Kathy

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Strange Birds: A Field Guide to Ruffling Feathers Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780425290439
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Kokila - September 3rd, 2019

Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky by Kwame Mbalia

Tristan Strong (what a great name!) didn’t expect his summer exile in the countryside to lead him to an alternate dimension where African American folktale characters are gods. He also didn’t expect that he could punch a hole in the sky. But relatable, reluctant hero Tristan has a summer full of all this and more, in a story that’s exciting and hilarious, with lots of depth and heart. Perfect for fans of adventure fantasy and especially for Rick Riordan enthusiasts. - Stephanie

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$17.99
ISBN: 9781368039932
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Rick Riordan Presents - October 15th, 2019

Child of the Dream (A Memoir of 1963) by Sharon Robinson

In 1963, the Children’s March brought urgency to the Civil Rights Movement and the March on Washington planted Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s dream in the world’s heads and hearts. Thirteen-year old Sharon, daughter of baseball legend and activist Jackie Robinson, yearned to do her part, but felt small in a large movement. Robinson offers an amazing front row seat to some of the greatest moments in history. Her memoir is an excellent and necessary reminder for this uncertain age. - Ivy

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$16.99
ISBN: 9781338282801
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scholastic Press - September 3rd, 2019

Cog by Greg Van Eekhout

Like a typical 12-year-old, Cog (short for “cognitive development”) is a learning machine. However, he’s also an actual machine who takes his job of gaining knowledge by making mistakes quite seriously. In this futuristic version of The Incredible Journey, readers get to experience an epic road trip through the eyes of Cog and his motley robot crew. While fans of The Wild Robot will certainly eat this up, all of us will relish its timely message about the dangers of uniMIND. - Michelle

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By Greg van Eekhout, Beatrice Blue (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062686077
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: HarperCollins - October 1st, 2019

Some Places More Than Others by Renée Watson

This book is heartwarming and real. Amara plunges into her school assignment when she convinces her parents it’s time for her to see Harlem and meet her grandfather for the first time. Amara’s curiosity about the silence between her father and grandfather keeps the pages turning. A great read for any adolescent curious about where they really come from and why family is important. - Noreen

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$16.99
ISBN: 9781681191089
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bloomsbury Children's Books - September 3rd, 2019

Dear Sweet Pea by Julie Murphy

Tackling divorce, body image, new friends, and first crushes with humor and love, Sweet Pea was a delight from start to finish. The main character, the hilarious and kind Sweet Pea, simply jumps off the page and I was rooting for her from the start. Great for aspiring journalists, and everyone who feels like they don’t fit in. - Emma

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$16.99
ISBN: 9780062473073
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Balzer + Bray - October 1st, 2019

A Good Kind of Trouble by Lisa Moore Ramée

Ramée’s debut novel explores the awkwardness of middle school, the changing dynamics with friends, and getting “woke.” I found fallible and funny (with her “allergy” to trouble) Shayla utterly relatable as she navigates her feelings about an incident of race-based police violence and struggles to decide whether breaking the rules is sometimes the right choice. Books that examine race often fall short, painting with broad strokes, but this book avoids that misstep—it’s right on target, addressing essential nuances with courage and honesty. - Stephanie

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A Good Kind of Trouble Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062836687
Availability: Available from Warehouse - Usually Delivers in 3-14 Days
Published: Balzer + Bray - March 12th, 2019

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