Nicholas A. Brown

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Review of The Girl, the Ring, & the Baseball Bat

The Girl, the Ring, & the Baseball Bat by Camille Gomera-TavarezHigh School    Levine Querido    408 pp.2/24    9781646142651    $19.99Alternating narrators Rosie, Caro, and Zeke find themselves transplanted to Jersey City, New Jersey, where each struggles to relate to the people around them. Sisters Rosie and Caro arrived with their mom from...

Review of Secrets We Tell the Sea

Secrets We Tell the Sea by Martha Riva Palacio Obón; trans. from Spanish by Lourdes HeuerIntermediate, Middle School    Bloomsbury    144 pp.10/23    9781547608164    $17.99e-book ed.  9781547608171    $12.59Courageous and resilient ten-year-old Sofía is taken to live with her grandmother in Bahía, by the sea. Over the ensuing weeks and months, she struggles...

Review of Frontera

Frontera by Julio Anta; illus. by Jacoby SalcedoMiddle School, High School    HarperAlley/HarperCollins    240 pp.7/23    9780063054950    $26.99Paper ed.  9780063054943    $18.99e-book ed.  9780063054967    $11.99In this graphic novel with supernatural elements, high-achieving teenager Mateo has grown up in Phoenix, Arizona, and only learned recently that his family was undocumented. After the family’s deportation...

Review of Lalo Lespérance Never Forgot

Lalo Lespérance Never Forgot by Phillippe DiederichIntermediate, Middle School    Dutton    256 pp.9/23    9780593354285    $17.99e-book ed.  9780593354308    $10.99In the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, middle schooler Lalo Lespérance is doing his best to adapt to virtual school and make social connections in his Florida apartment complex. Lalo struggles with severe...

Review of ¡Ay, Mija!: My Bilingual Summer in Mexico

¡Ay, Mija!: My Bilingual Summer in Mexico by Christine Suggs; illus. by the author Middle School, High School    Little, Brown    336 pp. 4/23    9780316591966    $24.99 Paper ed.  9780316591928    $17.99 e-book ed.  9780316591942    $9.99 This engaging graphic memoir depicts Suggs’s formative experiences visiting family members in Mexico City and their rancho...

Review of Then Everything Happens at Once

Then Everything Happens at Once by M-E GirardHigh School    HarperTeen    432 pp.1/23    9780063206687    $18.99e-book ed.  9780063206700    $12.99A teenage girl’s identity crisis coincides with the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in Girard’s (Girl Mans Up, rev. 11/16) latest novel, set on the outskirts of Toronto. Baylee is a thoughtful yet highly...

Review of Invisible

Invisible by Christina Diaz Gonzalez ; illus. by Gabriela Epstein ; color by Lark Pien Middle School     Graphix/Scholastic    208 pp.         g8/22     978-1-338-19455-5     $24.99Paper ed.  978-1-338-19454-8    $12.99e-book ed.  978-1-338-19456-2    $7.99 Gonzalez and Epstein’s compelling graphic novel opens with five students from Conrad Middle School sitting in...

Five Questions for Lizzo's Library of Congress Hosts

In addition to being a GRAMMY, NAACP Image Award, and MTV Award-winning songwriter and recording artist, Lizzo trained as a classical flutist. Since she hit the global music scene, her fans have been treated to flute cameos during Lizzo shows and occasional flute-related entertainment on her social feeds. Her visit...

Review of Burn Down, Rise Up

Burn Down, Rise Up by Vincent TiradoHigh School    Sourcebooks Fire    352 pp.   g5/22    978-1-7282-4600-0    $18.99In this horror novel grounded in a real-world setting, sixteen-year-old Raquel’s life is upended when her friend disappears—part of a pattern of unexplained ­disappearances—and her mother is hospitalized due to a mysterious illness. Raquel is...

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