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Review of Spinning

Spinning by Tillie Walden; illus. by the author High School    First Second/Roaring Brook    396 pp. 9/17    978-1-62672-772-4    $22.99 Paper ed.  978-1-62672-940-7    $17.99 In a graphic memoir, former competitive figure skater and synchronized skater Walden looks back at her twelve years growing up in the world of competitive sports. The shadowy, cool bluish-purples of most of […]

Review of Warcross

Warcross by Marie Lu High School    Putnam    357 pp. 9/17    978-0-399-54796-6    $18.99 One minute Emika Chen is a hacker and bounty hunter in a futuristic New York City, struggling to make ends meet, and the next minute — after she’s hacked into Warcross, the phenomenally popular virtual reality game — she’s on a private jet […]

Review of Sam, the Most Scaredy-Cat Kid in the Whole World

Sam, the Most Scaredy-Cat Kid in the Whole World by Mo Willems; illus. by the author Preschool    Hyperion    48 pp. 9/17    978-1-368-00214-1    $17.99 As fans of Leonardo, the Terrible Monster (rev. 9/05) will remember, monster Leonardo’s buddy Sam is “the most scaredy-cat kid in the whole world.” In this sequel, Sam and Leonardo meet another […]

Review of A Boy, a Mouse, and a Spider: The Story of E. B. White

A Boy, a Mouse, and a Spider: The Story of E. B. White by Barbara Herkert; illus. by Lauren Castillo Primary    Ottaviano/Holt    40 pp. 10/17    978-1-62779-245-5    $18.99 The writer E. B. White is introduced here in spare text and warm images, with a focus on White’s love of nature and animals as well as the […]

Review of All’s Faire in Middle School

All’s Faire in Middle School by Victoria Jamieson; illus. by the author Intermediate, Middle School    Dial    248 pp. 9/17    978-0-525-42998-2    $20.99 Paper ed.  978-0-525-42999-9    $12.99 Roller Girl (rev. 3/15) meets the Ren Faire in Jamieson’s new read-alike graphic novel. After years of homeschooling, Imogene Vega, a squire-in-training at the Florida Renaissance Faire where her family […]

Review of King of the Sky

King of the Sky by Nicola Davies; illus. by Laura Carlin Primary    Candlewick    48 pp. 6/17    978-0-7636-9568-2    $17.99 “It rained and rained and rained…The streets smelled of mutton soup and coal dust. And no one spoke my language. All of it told me this is not where you belong.” An elderly Welsh miner and a […]

Review of Twelve Days in May: Freedom Ride 1961

Twelve Days in May: Freedom Ride 1961 by Larry Dane Brimner Middle School    Calkins Creek/Boyds Mills    110 pp.    g 11/17    978-1-62979-586-7    $18.95 e-book ed.  978-1-62979-917-9    $9.99 Brimner (We Are One; Birmingham Sunday; Black & White) revisits the civil rights movement in this book about the 1961 Freedom Ride. Opening with a litany of landmark court […]

Review of Patina

Patina [Track] by Jason Reynolds Intermediate, Middle School    Dlouhy/Atheneum    234 pp. 8/17    978-1-4814-5018-8    $16.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-5020-1    $10.99 Back for the second leg of the Track series relay, the Defenders team has passed the baton to title character Patina, nicknamed Patty. First introduced to readers in Ghost (rev. 11/16), Patty has been forced to grow […]

Review of Lines

Lines by Suzy Lee; illus. by the author Preschool    Chronicle    32 pp. 9/17    978-1-4521-5665-1    $17.99 The front endpapers show a pencil and eraser on a blank page. The main story begins with a solitary figure skater tracing a crisp line across the ice. What follows are wordless pages of elegant choreography as the skater launches […]

Holiday High Notes 2017

We have a little section of books this time of year. They’re new (and some reissued), and filled with winter cheer. Nutcracked by Susan Adrian Intermediate    Random    234 pp. 9/17    978-0-399-55668-5    $16.99 Library ed.  978-0-399-55669-2     $19.99 e-book ed.  978-0-399-55670-8    $10.99 During each rehearsal for her role as Clara in The Nutcracker, Georgie finds herself — […]