Hooray!! It’s the end of summer! I just know all the Middle Graders out there are thrilled!!
Cheer up, young lady. Just look at all the new books available this month!
MAGIC TREE HOUSE #44: A Ghost Tale for Christmas Time (A Stepping Stone Book ™) (Random House Books for Young Readers) – Mary Pope Osborne (Author), Sal Murdocca (Illustrator), Jack and Annie’s mission from Merlin the Magician? To help the famous writer Charles Dickens! In a magical whirl, the brother and sister are whisked back in time to Victorian England and the foggy streets of London.
THIS ISN’T WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE (Secret Series) (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers) – Pseudonymous Bosch, The Secret Series continues in this dangerous and daring fourth adventure.
DEAR PEN PAL (Mother Daughter Book Club) (Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing) – Heather Vogel Frederick (Author), The third book in the Mother-Daughter Book Club series by Heather Vogel Frederick follows the girls for a new year of humor and friendship.
RECKLESS (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers) – Cornelia Funkefans, Beyond the mirror, the darkest fairy tales come alive. . . . For years, Jacob Reckless has enjoyed the Mirrorworld’s secrets and treasures. Not anymore.
DRAGONBREATH: CURSE OF THE WERE-WIENER (Dial) – Ursula Vernon, Danny Dragonbreath and his best friend Wendell thought the hot dog from the school cafeteria looked a little . . . off. Then things got weird when the hot dog bit Wendell, and weirder still when Wendell started to sprout back hair. Could Wendell be morphing into a . . . (cue ominous music) were-wiener?
THE PORCUPINE YEAR (HarperCollins) – Louise_Erdrich, This sequel to The Birchbark House (Hyperion, 1999) and The Game of Silence (HarperCollins, 2005) continues the story of Omakayas, an Ojibwe girl who in 1852 is now 12 winters old.
VIDIA MEETS HER MATCH (Disney Fairies) (Disney Chapters) (RH/Disney) – Kiki Thorpe (author), R H Disney (Illustrator), This fast-paced story of Vidia and Wisp’s rivalry is the 19th book in our popular Disney Fairies chapter book series, which features Tinker Bell’s adventures in Never Land with her fairy friends.
ZORGAMAZOO (Razorbill) – Robert Paul Weston, This novel, written entirely in Dr. Seuss-style rhyme, introduces Katrina Katrell, a feisty, adventure-loving heroine. When her guardian, Mrs. Krabone, a woman as evil as any of Roald Dahl’s villains, threatens the free-thinking Katrina with a lobotomy, the girl runs away and meets Morty, a hairy, horned, and bumbling creature called a Zorgle.
THE BEST BAD LUCK I EVER HAD (Puffin; Reprint edition) – Kristin Levine, This spirited, early-20th-century coming-of-age story presents a small-town cast of well-drawn characters, an unlikely friendship, engaging adventures, and poignant realizations.
NERDS: BOOK TWO: M IS FOR MAMA’S BOY (Amulet Books) – Michael Buckley (author), Ethen Beavers (Illustrator), NERDS combines all the excitement of international espionage with all the awkwardness of elementary school, and the results are hilarious.
THE 25 GREATEST BASEBALL PLAYERS OF ALL TIME (Sourcebooks Jabberwocky) – Len Berman, Discover the greatest baseball players of all time! Which guys playing right now will they still be talking about in 100 years? A-Rod? Pujols? How about Jeter? Why do the best pitchers receive the Cy Young Award? Was Honus Wagner anything but a face on a $2,800,000 baseball card? Who was this Babe Ruth guy, anyway?
A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO DRAGON MAGIC (Mirrorstone) – Susan Morris, Do you wish you could fly on wings of your own? Breathe fire? Cast spells in the blink of an eye? These are the secrets only dragon magic can teach you.
CALVIN COCONUT: ZOO BREATH (Wendy Lamb Books) – Graham Salisbury (author), Jacqueline Rogers (Illustrator) Hawaii boy Calvin Coconut convinced his mom to let him adopt a dog. But Mom says Streak smells bad. Especially her breath. To Calvin, Streak’s stink is a good one, but he’s worried. If he doesn’t come up with a way to deal with Streak’s zoo breath soon, Mom might make him give his dog back to the shelter.
DYING TO MEET YOU: 43 OLD CEMETERY ROAD: BOOK ONE (Sandpiper; Reprint edition) – Kate Klise (Author), M. Sarah Klise (Illustrator), When former best-selling children’s author I.B. Grumply moves into a Victorian mansion in Ghastly, IL, to write the latest installment in his “Ghost Tamer” series, he is hindered by more than just his overwhelming case of writer’s block.
CATCHING SANTA (THE KRINGLE CHRONICLES, BOOK 1) (Pants On Fire Press) – Marc Franco, 11-year-old Jakob Jablonski But that life is about to change when a magical and frightening stranger demands the unimaginable, the impossible: that Jakob catch Santa or else.
THE KNEEBONE BOY (Feiwel & Friends) – Ellen Potter, Life in a small town can be pretty boring when everyone avoids you like the plague. But after their father unwittingly sends them to stay with an aunt who’s away on holiday, the Hardscrabble children take off on an adventure that begins in the seedy streets of London and ends in a peculiar sea village where legend has it a monstrous creature lives who is half boy and half animal.
THE FAMILIARS (HarperCollins) – Adam Jay Epstein, Andrew Jacobson, Escaping from a bounty hunter, a streetwise cat becomes the familiar of a boy magician-in-training. Almost before Aldwyn gets to know his new surroundings, Jack, his sister, and a fellow student are kidnapped and it is up to him; Skylar, a magic-adept bluejay; and Gilbert, a clumsy, red-eyed tree frog, to rescue their “loyals.”
WALLS WITHIN WALLS (Katherine Tegen Books) – Maureen_Sherry (Author), Adam Adam Stower (Illustrator), After their father, a video-game inventor, strikes it rich, the Smithfork kids find they hate their new life. They move from their cozy Brooklyn neighborhood to a swanky apartment on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue. They have no friends, a nanny who takes the place of their parents, and a school year looming ahead that promises to be miserable.
MUSEUM OF THIEVES (THE KEEPERS) (Delacorte Books for Young Readers) – Lian Tanner, Welcome to the tyrannical city of Jewel, where impatience is a sin and boldness is a crime. Goldie Roth has lived in Jewel all her life. Like every child in the city, she wears a silver guardchain and is forced to obey the dreaded Blessed Guardians. She has never done anything by herself and won’t be allowed out on the streets unchained until Separation Day. When Separation Day is canceled, Goldie, who has always been both impatient and bold, runs away, risking not only her own life but also the lives of those she has left behind.
THE DEAD BOYS (Putnam Juvenile) – Royce Buckingham, In the desert town of Richland, Washington, there stands a giant sycamore tree. Horribly mutated by nuclear waste, it feeds on the life energy of boys that it snags with its living roots. And when Teddy Matthews moves to town, the tree trains its sights on its next victim.
GHOST HUNT: CHILLING TALES OF THE UNKNOWN (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers) – Jason Hawes, Grant Wilson, An exciting new middle grade collection of spooky paranormal investigations based on REAL ghost hunts from stars of the TV show Ghost Hunters, the number one reality show on cable television. www.the-atlantic-paranormal-society.com/ and www.syfy.com/ghosthunters/
FOR HORSE-CRAZY GIRLS ONLY: EVERYTHING YOU WANT TO KNOW ABOUT HORSES (Feiwel & Friends) – Christina Wilsdon (Author), Alecia Underhill (Illustrator), the only comprehensive book about everything a horse-crazy girl needs to know about horses. You’ll learn everything from the different breeds of horses, to how a horse’s body works, to the quirky little things that make the horse the BEST animal ever.
HAMSTER MAGIC (A STEPPING STONE BOOK ™) (Random House Books for Young Readers) – Lynne Jonell (Author), Brandon Dorman (Illustrator), Lynne Jonell, the popular author of Emmy and the Incredible Shrinking Rat, makes her Stepping Stones debut with a high-spirited tale of mixed-up magic and wishes gone wrong.
HOW TO TRAP A ZOMBIE, TRACK A VAMPIRE, AND OTHER HANDS-ON ACTIVITIES FOR MONSTER HUNTERS: A YOUNG WIZARDS HANDBOOK (Mirrorstone) – A.R. Rotruck, Packed with easy projects using everyday materials, this fact-filled activity book shows wannabe wizards how to craft unique creations such as their own wizard robes, play games such as vampire tag, master adventuring skills like mapping a monster-filled dungeon, and follow step-by-step instructions on how to “survive” almost any monster attack.
BENJAMIN FRANKLINSTEIN LIVES (Putnam Juvenile) – Matthew Mcelligott, Larry David Tuxbury, Victor Godwin’s orderly life is upended when he discovers that Benjamin Franklin never actually died-he was put into suspended animation and hidden away for more than 200 years in Victor’s basement!
PENNY DREADFUL (Random House Books for Young Readers) – Laurel Snyder (Author), Abigail Halpin (Illustrator), Penelope Grey wishes for something—anything!—interesting to happen, and here’s what she gets:
• Her father quits his job.
• Her family runs out of money.
• Her home becomes a pit of despair.
So Penelope makes another wish, and this time the Greys inherit a ramshackle old house in the middle of nowhere.