48 Most-Anticipated Middle Grade Books: April-June 2024

Today’s post is sponsored by Ronnie Riley and Asking For A Friend!

Title Asking For A Friend
Author Ronnie Riley
Intended Target Audience Middle Grade
Publication Date June 4th 2024 by Scholastic Press
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Eden Jones has exactly three friends. And they’re all fake.

From a web of lies and social anxiety to true friendship and queer joy; this is the wonderful second book from the author of the Indies Introduce and Indie Next List pick, Jude Saves The World.

Why go through the stress of making friends when you can just pretend? It works for Eden and their social anxiety…until their mom announces she’s throwing them a birthday party and all their friends are invited.

Eden’s “friends,” Duke, Ramona, and Tabitha, are all real kids from school…but Eden’s never actually spoken to them before. Now Eden will do whatever it takes to convince them to be their friends ― at least until the party is over.

When things start to go better than Eden expects, and the group starts to bond, Eden finds themselves trapped in a lie that gets worse the longer they keep it up. What happens if their now sort-of-real friends discover that Eden hasn’t been honest with them from the very beginning?

Author Ronnie Riley creates a world full of queer joy and all the ups and downs of true friendship.

I look forward to making Pop! Goes The Reader’s most-anticipated lists every single year! While being a mood reader means I’m not always able to strictly stick to a to-be-read list, it’s exciting to explore what’s being published in the months ahead. Posts like this help me better organize my thoughts and decide what I ideally want to prioritize and read first, not to mention give me lots to look forward to!

That said, I am doing things a little differently this year! Ordinarily my most-anticipated lists cover a six month time period (i.e January-June, July-December) but this year the lists I share will cover only three months at a time. This is not only because I find it extremely time-consuming and labour-intensive to cover such an enormous number of books at one time (For example, 2022’s January-June YA list was 100 books long!) but also because I think making these into slightly smaller posts will makes it easier for readers to consume. It can be really overwhelming to see a list of 100+ books, and because my goal is to specifically highlight the titles selected for my most-anticipated posts, this seems a little counter-productive. That said, I welcome all feedback about this issue. Did you like it better when the most-anticipated posts covered six months, instead? Please let me know in the comments!

Please Note: If you’re a middle grade author with a novel being published in 2024 and don’t see your book on one of Pop! Goes The Reader’s Most-Anticipated lists, please don’t be hurt or upset! These lists are entirely subjective and based on my own personal reading taste. My favourite genres are contemporary and realistic fiction fiction, horror and historical fiction, which is why you won’t see many books outside of these genres on this list. While I try my best to remain up-to-date about upcoming releases, it’s also entirely possible that I simply haven’t learned about your book yet! If you’re the author of a 2024 middle grade novel that you think might make a good fit for me and Pop! Goes The Reader, please don’t hesitate to reach out – I would love to hear from you!

For even more wonderful middle grade novels being published in 2024, please check out this Goodreads list which currently includes over 300 MG novels being published this year for you to choose from. Hopefully you’ll be able to find the perfect book for you. Happy reading!

The publication dates listed below might be subject to change.

Publication Date April 2nd 2024 by Penguin Workshop
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Perfect for fans of The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise and Merci Suárez Changes Gears, Sing It Like Celia is a revelatory story about a Mexican American girl who finds her voice and herself with the help of her role model and icon, Celia Cruz.

Twelve-year-old Salva Sanchez has always been a fan of Celia Cruz, also known as “the queen of salsa.” Her love of Celia stems from her mother, who leaves Salva without explanation one awful day. Now Salva is stuck with her investigative journalist father in an RV campground. In the middle of nowhere.

As Salva acclimates to her new environment and desperately tries to figure out why her mother left, she befriends a posse of campground kids who have started a band. When the kids discover that Salva has an amazing singing voice, they convince her to join their group. Soon, Salva learns how to find her voice — and herself — with the help of her newfound friends, her dad, and the one and only Celia Cruz.

Publication Date April 2nd 2024 by Bloomsbury Children’s Books
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Award-winning author Gillian McDunn pens a delightfully quirky mystery that examines the meaning of home, perfect for fans of The Vanderbeekers series.

Simon’s family is always on the move. Every few months, they load up their van, “Vincent Van Go,” and set off for a new adventure. According to his dad, you can’t live an extraordinary life by staying in one place. But all Simon wants is to settle down, so he’s hatched a plan: to make their latest apartment in the Tangerine Pines building his forever home.

When a priceless necklace is stolen, clues indicate the thief might actually be another neighbor. Simon worries he’ll have to move again if the thief isn’t caught. He usually doesn’t go looking for trouble, but if retrieving the necklace means establishing home, Simon is willing to risk it. With the help of his neighbor Amaya, pet sitter, plant-waterer, and podcaster extraordinaire, Simon is determined to crack the case and finally put down roots.

Publication Date April 2nd 2024 by Algonquin Young Readers
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In this powerful novel by an award-winning author, 12-year-old Winnie Nash is forced to live with her grandma for the summer and finds herself torn between her family’s secrets and the joy of celebrating Pride.

Winnie Nash never used to have so many secrets.

But then she agreed to stay with her grandma for the summer so her mom can take care of her health during her latest pregnancy. Now Winnie plays card games with Grandma’s friends (boring), joins the senior citizen book club (fine, even if no one thinks she’ll read the books), and absolutely does not talk about her mom’s sad days (she never used to be so sad…).

The biggest secret is that her parents asked Winnie not to mention she’s gay to Grandma. And there’s a really cute girl who also hangs out with the senior citizens. What happens if Grandma notices just how much Winnie likes Pippa? The longer Winnie hides the truth, the more she longs to be surrounded by her LGBTQ+ community and the more she feels like the only place she can be herself is at New York City’s Pride celebration. Winnie decides she’ll get to Pride, one way or another. But is this just one more secret she has to keep?

Publication Date April 2nd 2024 by Carolrhoda Books
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Cruzita is going to be a pop star. All she has to do is win a singing contest at her favorite theme park and get famous. But she can’t go to the theme park this summer. Instead, she has to help out at her family’s bakery, which has been struggling ever since Tío Chuy died. Cruzita’s great-uncle poured his heart into the bakery ― the family legacy ― and now that he’s gone, nothing is the same.

When Cruzita’s not rolling uneven tortillas or trying to salvage rock-hard conchas, she has to take mariachi lessons, even though she doesn’t know how to play her great-grandpa’s violin and she’s not fluent in Spanish. At first, she’s convinced her whole summer will be a disaster. But as she discovers the heart and soul of mariachi music, she realizes that there’s more than one way to be a star ― and more than one way to carry on a legacy.

Publication Date April 2nd 2024 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
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Twelve-year-old Fern believes she’s living a noble life – but what if everything she’s been told is a lie? This is a huge-hearted story about a girl learning to question everything — and to trust in herself.

Fern’s lived at the Ranch, an off-the-grid, sustainable community in upstate New York, since she was six. The work is hard, but Fern admires the Ranch’s leader, Dr. Ben. So when Fern’s mother sneaks them away in the middle of the night and says Dr. Ben is dangerous, Fern doesn’t believe it. She wants desperately to go back, but her mom just keeps driving.

Suddenly thrust into the treacherous, toxic, outside world, Fern thinks only about how to get home again. She has a plan, but it will take time. As that time goes by, though, Fern realizes there are things she will miss from this place — the library, a friend from school, the ocean — and there are things she learned at the Ranch that are just…not true.

Now Fern will have to decide. How much is she willing to give up to return to the Ranch? Should she trust Dr. Ben’s vision for her life? Or listen to the growing feeling that she can live by her own rules?

Publication Date April 2nd 2024 by Sourcebooks Young Readers
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Crack the codes. Find the treasure. Escape the house.

From the acclaimed author of Scritch Scratch and What Lives In The Woods comes a action-packed adventure novel about three friends who team up to find a hidden treasure in an abandoned 1950’s funhouse.

Twelve-year-old Sarah Greene wants nothing more from her seventh-grade year than to beat the hardest escape room left in her town with her best friends, West, and Hannah. But when a foreclosure notice shows up on Sarah’s front door, everything changes. Since her father became ill two years ago, things have been bad, but not lose your house bad…until now.

Sarah feels helpless until the day Hannah mentions a treasure rumored to be hidden in the walls of an abandoned funhouse. According to legend, Hans, Stefan, and Karl Stein were orphaned at eight years old and lived with different families until they were able to reunite as adults. Their dream was to build the most epic funhouse in existence. They wanted their experience to be more than mirror mazes and optical illusions, so they not only created elaborate riddles and secret passages, but they also claimed to have hidden a treasure inside the funhouse.

Once in, Sarah, West, and Hannah realize the house is unlike any escape room they’ve attempted. There are challenges, yes, but they feel personal. Like the triplets knew who would get in. It seems impossible, but so does everything about the house. As soon as they’re in she immediately worries that attempting the funhouse is a bad idea but Sarah has no choice but to continue, since her future is at stake.

Publication Date April 4th 2024 by Albert Whitman & Company
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The unforgettable tale of a girl, her maybe-criminal mom, her babysitting business, and her pet pineapple.

When FBI agents swarm twelve-year-old Mavis Callahan’s downtown Chicago home, her mom goes on the run. With the family’s house and bank accounts seized, Mavis’s dad takes her and her siblings to seek refuge with his sister just south of rural Somewhere, Illinois — a far cry from the big city lifestyle Mavis is used to. As Mavis grapples with her sudden turn in fortune, she learns to make new friends and starts a babysitting business to bring in some much-needed cash for the family. But she can’t help but wonder — is her mom truly guilty? And if not, why has she gone into hiding, contacting Mavis only through a series of postcards from exotic locales? Mavis isn’t sure if she’s ready for the truth, but she’ll do anything to find it.

Publication Date April 9th 2024 by Delacorte Press
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From the award-winning author of Song For A Whale comes a poignant and heartwarming tale about a girl who discovers a pair of endangered birds about to lay eggs in the marshes of her summer camp…and the secret plan she hatches to help them.

Nina is used to feeling like the odd one out, both at school and in her large family. But while trying to fit in at summer camp, she discovers something even more peculiar: two majestic birds have built a nest in the marsh behind an abandoned infirmary. They appear to be whooping cranes, but that’s impossible — Nina is an amateur bird-watcher, and all her resources tell her that those rare birds haven’t nested in Texas for over a hundred years.

When Nina reports the sighting to wildlife officials, more questions arise. Experts track all the endangered birds, but they can’t identify the female bird that Nina found. Who is she, and where did she come from?

With the help of some fellow campers, Nina sets out to discover who the mystery bird really is. As she gets closer to the truth, will she find a flock of her own?

This instant classic captures the coming-of-age moment of learning to spread your wings in a way you’ll never forget.

Publication Date April 9th 2024 by Wendy Lamb Books
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A girl discovers a connection between her home in the Philippines and her new home in the U.S. through a special garden in this middle grade novel that celebrates nourishment and growth.

Twelve-year-old Isabel is the new kid in her San Francisco middle school. It’s the first time in many years that she’ll be living with her mother again. Mama’s job in the US allowed Isabel and her grandparents to live more comfortably in the Philippines, but now Isabel doesn’t really know her own mother anymore.

Making new friends in a new city, a new country, is hard, but joining the gardening and cooking club at school means Isabel will begin to find her way, and maybe she too, will begin to bloom.

In this beautifully rendered novel-in-verse, Mae Respicio explores how growth can take many forms, offering both the challenges and joy of new beginnings.

Publication Date April 9th 2024 by Amulet Books
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Laurie Morrison’s Keeping Pace is a poignant middle-grade novel about friends-turned-rivals training for a half-marathon — and rethinking what it means to win and what they mean to each other.

Grace has been working for years to beat her former friend Jonah Perkins’s GPA so she can be named top scholar of the eighth grade. But when Jonah beats her for the title, it feels like none of Grace’s academic accomplishments have really mattered. They weren’t enough to win — or to impress her dad. And then the wide, empty summer looms. With nothing planned and no more goals or checklists, she doesn’t know what she’s supposed to be working toward.

Eager for something to occupy her days, Grace signs up for a half-marathon race that she and Jonah used to talk about running together. Jonah’s running it, too. Maybe if she can beat Jonah on race day, she’ll feel OK again. But as she begins training with Jonah and checking off a new list of summer goals, she starts to question what — and who — really matters to her. Is winning at all costs really worth it?

Engaging and heartfelt, Keeping Pace is about wanting to win at all costs — and having to learn how to fail.

Publication Date April 23rd 2024 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers
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A determined girl spends the summer before middle school learning to stand up for her low-income community in this funny, fast-paced read just right for fans of Kelly Yang’s Front Desk.

Sunny Parker loves the Del Mar Garden Apartments, the affordable housing complex where she lives. And she especially loves her neighbors. From her best friend, Haley Michaels, to Mrs. Garcia and her two kids — developmentally disabled son AJ and bitter but big-hearted daughter Izzy — every resident has a story and a special place in Sunny’s heart.

Sunny never thought living at the Del Mar Garden Apartments made her different — until the city proposes turning an old, abandoned school into a new affordable housing complex and the backlash of her affluent neighborhood teaches Sunny the hard way that not everyone appreciates the community she calls home. Her dad, the Del Mar’s manager-slash-handyman, wants Sunny to lay low. But as hurtful rhetoric spreads and the city’s public hearing approaches, Sunny realizes that sometimes there’s too much at stake to stay silent.

With her friends behind her, Sunny Parker is determined to change the narrative — because she and her community are here to stay!

Publication Date April 30th 2024 by Greenwillow Books
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In this stand-alone novel with themes of friendship and family, twelve-year-old Elsby discovers a family of talking cats living in the house next door and must help them harness the magic that made them that way. From the author of the acclaimed Coo, The Cats of Silver Crescent is for fans of Kathi Appelt and Katherine Applegate.

With her mother busy traveling for work, Elsby isn’t thrilled to be spending a few weeks with her great-aunt Verity. Luckily, she has her notebook and a lush garden to sketch to help pass the time. But a visitor takes Elsby by surprise: a cat standing on its two hind legs and dressed like a sailor dashes across the garden and into the neighboring woods!

Elsby can’t believe her eyes, and she can’t imagine that Aunt Verity would believe her, either. But that night, the cat and three of his cat companions approach Elsby. They need Elsby’s help. While the cats can talk, think, and behave like humans, the magical spell that made them that way will revert if it’s not renewed soon. Elsby might be the only one who can save them — but every enchantment comes at a price.

A contemporary fantasy about family, friends, trust, and the magic that’s inside everyone, The Cats of Silver Crescent will captivate animal lovers and fans of Jenn Reese’s A Game of Fox & Squirrels.

Publication Date April 30th 2024 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
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Benny Ramírez can see dead people…Well, one dead person, anyway. A hilarious and heartwarming story about a boy who can suddenly see the ghost of his famous musician grandfather!

After moving cross-country into his late grandfather’s Miami mansion, Benny discovers that the ghost of his famous trumpet-playing abuelo, the great Ignacio Ramírez, is still there…and isn’t too thrilled about it. He’s been barred from the afterlife, and no one can see him except his grandson. But Benny’s got problems of his own. He’s enrolled in a performing arts school with his siblings, despite having no obvious talent.

Luckily, Abuelo believes they can help each other. Abuelo has until New Year’s Eve to do some good in the world and thinks that teaching Benny how to play the trumpet and become a school celebrity might be the key to earning his wings. Having no better ideas, Benny finds himself taking Abuelo’s advice — to disastrous and hilarious results.

Benny and Abuelo will find that there’s more than one way to be great in this unforgettable, laugh-out-loud tale of family, music, and self-discovery.

Publication Date May 7th 2024 by Holiday House
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Possessed dogs, missing livestock, cloaked figures…CJ Delaney’s summer vacation just got really weird.

When a boring old skatepark opening becomes the scene of a something truly strange, CJ Delaney can’t believe her luck. This is just the kind of big story she’s dreamed of breaking for the town’s local paper.

With best friend Parker in tow, CJ is determined to get to the bottom of everything and save the town from evil. Isn’t this what summer vacation is for? But when all answers point to someone close, CJ stands not only to lose her byline but the scariest thing of all — the people and pet she loves.

With a strong, snappy voice and a warm sense of humor, The Supernatural Files of CJ Delaney is a fast-paced middle grade mystery (with just the right amount of hair-raising thrills) that begs to be read cover-to-cover in one sitting. This debut from Carol Williams shines with love for its characters, college-town setting, and belief in the power of the written word.

Publication Date May 7th 2024 by Scholastic Press
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When boys from her community start harassing her, Ainy needs to figure out how to get them to stop – while still staying true to herself.

Dress Coded meets Amina’s Voice in this new middle grade novel by Maleeha Siddiqui.

Ainy is excited for summer! She plans on working at her mom’s clothing boutique, having adventures with her best friend, and maybe even starting to wear the hijab – just like her big sister. But when certain boys from Ainy’s Muslim community keep showing up at the store to give her unwanted attention, she goes from possibly wanting to wear the hijab someday to feeling like she needs to wear it to get the boys to leave her alone.

But wearing the hijab doesn’t do what she’d hoped: It doesn’t deflect the boys’ attention at all! If anything, they’ve found something new to harass her about. With the help of her best friend and her older sister, Ainy must channel her inner creative strength and find the confidence to stand her ground and get the respect she deserves.

This is a compulsively readable, feminist, and thought-provoking book about staying true to yourself by acclaimed author Maleeha Siddiqui.

Publication Date May 7th 2024 by Quill Tree Books
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From the author of It’s Boba Time For Pearl Li! comes an empowering, heartfelt middle grade novel about a grunge-loving Taiwanese American tween who must use her voice to fight for ESL support at her school.

Lily Xiao can’t wait to go to Camp Rock Out this summer, where she’ll finally be able to shed her “class robot” good girl reputation and start her journey to becoming the next Eddie Vedder! And she can’t wait to do it with her best friend and cousin, Vivian, who’s just moved from Taiwan to Lily’s California hometown.

But as the two cousins work their way through seventh grade, Vivian struggles more and more with her schoolwork, which is all taught in English. If Vivian can’t get her grades up, her parents won’t let her go to rock camp.

Determined to help, Lily embarks on a mission to push their school to provide more support for English-as-a-Second-Language learners like Vivian. But her first-generation immigrant family is nervous about Lily challenging the status quo. We should be grateful to be here, they always say.

With Camp Rock Out on the line, Lily will need to decide how far she’ll push against her family’s wishes in order to stand up and speak out.

Publication Date May 7th 2024 by Bloomsbury Children’s Books
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When You Reach Me meets Starfish in this heartfelt contemporary middle grade about a misfit girl who finds a way to skip all of the hard parts of life.

J.P. Green has always felt out of step. She doesn’t wear the right clothes, she doesn’t say the right things, and her body…well, she’d rather not talk about it. And seventh grade is shaping up to be the worst year yet. So when J.P. discovers a mysterious door in her neighbor’s treehouse, she doesn’t hesitate before walking through. The door sends her three days forward in time.

Suddenly, J.P. can skip all the worst parts of seventh grade: Fitness tests in P.E., oral book reports, awkward conversations with her mom…she can avoid them all and no one even knows she was gone.

But can you live a life without any of the bad parts? Are there experiences out there that you can’t miss?

This moving middle grade novel about mental health, body acceptance, and self-confidence asks what it truly means to show up for the people you love – and for yourself.

Publication Date May 7th 2024 by Katherine Tegen Books
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Award-winning author Justina Chen delivers a powerful and heartfelt novel about a young girl who accidentally discovers she has an identical twin sister. This uplifting novel about reunited adoptee sisters experiencing new family traditions, foods, and customs together is perfect for fans of Janae Marks, Kelly Yang, and Meg Medina. Dive into a nuanced portrayal of the transracial, transnational adoptee experience, including the joys and the sorrows within the wide spectrum of experiences as an adoptee.

On Dessie Mei Breedlove’s first day at a new school in the middle of her sixth-grade year, who does she see? A classmate who looks exactly like her. As in: Dessie and Donna Lee have the exact same glossy black hair. The exact same brown eyes. The exact same cheeky smile.

A secret DNA test reveals the shocking truth: Dessie and Donna are identical twins, adopted from the same orphanage in China, then separated into two different families: one white, the other Taiwanese American. The Breedloves and the Lees.

Making up for lost time, the girls throw themselves into their newfound sisterhood, relishing every similarity. Cats or dogs (dogs!). Sweet or savory (both!). Favorite band (A2Z, duh!). But the small differences between the girls soon create tension…and when crisis strikes, Dessie must figure out who she is, where she belongs, and what it truly means to be a sister.

Publication Date May 7th 2024 by Feiwel & Friends
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A hot-headed cynic befriends the new kid ― a shy trans boy ― when she takes on a bet to get him elected student body president in this new middle grade contemporary novel from Caroline Huntoon, author of Skating on Mars.

Linus is the new boy at school, and he’s trying to keep it quiet. After coming out as trans last year and managing the attention that came with it, he’s more than happy to fade into the background of his new middle school.

Etta isn’t like other kids at school, and she’s proud of it. The class misanthrope and the owner of the greenest hair at Doolittle Middle School, she’s still reeling from a painful friendship breakup, making her more than happy to burn middle-school bridges before she heads off to the local alternative high school next year.

When Etta’s over-it-all attitude sparks a challenge from her ex-best friend, Marigold, to get Linus elected student body president, Linus is thrust back into the spotlight. But what started out as a bet quickly turns into a true friendship between Linus and Etta, one that could be in jeopardy if Linus finds out the real origins of his and Etta’s connection. Can Linus and Etta’s friendship withstand the betrayal of the bet?

Publication Date May 7th 2024 by Astra Young Readers
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Turning Red meets The Giver in this novel about a town where everyone agrees to think positively — but one girl, whose emotions manifest as colors, can’t hide her true feelings.

In Serenity, Minnesota, everyone looks on the bright side, and that’s on purpose: to live in this town, people have to agree to talk positively and only focus on the good things in life. For twelve-year-old Mackenzie Werner, who has the rare gift of her emotions showing up as a colorful haze around her body, this town seems like the perfect place; she’ll never face the embarrassment of a grumbly grapefruit smog if everyone and everything is set up to be happy. But when a documentary maker comes to town and starts asking questions, Mackenzie, overwhelmed with emotion, can’t hold her haze back — and it explodes onto the whole town. Now everyone has their own haze, revealing their real feelings. As Mackenzie learns that emotions go beyond surface level, the whole town must reckon with what it means now that these true colors are on display.

Publication Date May 7th 2024 by Candlewick
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Travel through time with National Book Award Finalist Kekla Magoon in a page-turning fantasy adventure about family secrets and finding the courage to plot your own life story.

Since Grandpa died, Dally’s days are dull and restricted. She’s eleven and a half years old, and her exacting single mother is already preparing her to take over the family business. Starved for adventure and release, Dally rescues a mysterious envelope from her mother’s clutches, an envelope Grandpa had earmarked for her. The map she finds inside leads straight to an ancient vault, a library of secrets where each book is a portal to a precise moment in time. As Dally “checks out” adventure after adventure — including an exhilarating outing with pirates — she begins to dive deep into her family’s hidden history. Soon she’s visiting every day to escape the demands of the present. But the library has secrets of its own, intentions that would shape her life as surely as her mother’s meticulous plans. What will Dally choose?

Equal parts mystery and adventure — with a biracial child puzzling out her identity alongside the legacy of the past — this masterful middle-grade fantasy rivets with crackling prose, playful plot twists, and timeless themes. A satisfying choice for fans of Kindred and When You Reach Me.

Publication Date May 14th 2024 by Walker Books US
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Young naturalist Sammie loves to do field research in a special stretch of wilderness in the suburbs — but now she must protect it. Science and heart combine in this engaging story.

Sammie, a budding naturalist, knows of a secret and wonderful place: Winghaven, an abandoned lot in the middle of the suburbs where wildlife flourishes. She spends hours making notes and drawings in her meticulous field journal. When Bram, a new boy, turns up with his camera, Sammie worries he’ll give away her hidden haven — after all, the other boys at school bully her. But Bram is a scientist like Sammie, and together they observe tiny pond creatures, a pileated woodpecker with a red crest like a pirate’s bandana, and thriving monarch butterflies whose habitats are becoming scarce. When Sammie and Bram discover bright flagging tape encircling the trees, they learn Winghaven is in danger from a local developer — and it’s going to take courage, spirit, and science to save it.

This beautifully written story, full of details about the natural world, includes Sammie’s field illustrations as well as real-life notes on keeping a nature journal, studying monarchs, and bird-watching.

Publication Date May 14th 2024 by Aladdin
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An anxious aspiring filmmaker bands together with an unlikely friend group to protect their beloved state animal in this heartwarming contemporary middle grade novel perfect for fans of Jamie Sumner and Erin Entrada Kelly.

Twelve-year-old Olive Blackwood’s dream is to direct blockbuster fantasy movies, just like her dad wanted to before he died. She decides to apply to the highly competitive Rose City Summer Film Camp with the help of her best friend, Kayla. But Olive isn’t sure how she can cast the movie when the mere thought of talking to a stranger makes her nervous.

Then a surprise project in Olive’s film class presents her best chance at going to Rose City: the group who makes the best documentary trailer will receive a recommendation to the elite program! But Olive’s hopes are quickly dashed when she’s paired with the two worst students in class: loud Jo Willems has a flashy style of dressing just as intimidating as their outspoken opinions and David Moore is even quieter than Olive, fading into the background. It seems impossible for the three of them to find enough common ground to produce something noteworthy.

When Olive stumbles across an old lady chasing a beaver with a frying pan, she’s disturbed to discover it’s legal to kill beavers in Oregon — which has the animal on the state flag! Olive posts the video she took of the incident, and it goes viral. She wants to raise more awareness, and if she uses her documentary to do it, she could even get the coveted Rose City recommendation at the same time.

With the help of unexpected friendship, counseling, and a little everyday magic, can Olive make her voice be heard?

Publication Date May 14th 2024 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
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Get ready to solve the mystery at the heart of this captivating new middle grade adventure about family ― and a house with a mind of its own ― from the award-winning author of Game of Fox & Squirrels and Every Bird A Prince, Jenn Reese.

Twelve-year-old Perigee has never met a problem they couldn’t solve. So when their Dad’s spirits need raising, Perigee formulates the Plan: a road trip to Dad’s childhood home to reunite him with his estranged mother. There’s something in it for Perigee, too, as they will finally get to visit “Eklunds’ Puzzle House,” the mysterious bed & breakfast their grandparents built but never opened.

They arrive ahead of a massive storm and the House immediately puts Perigee’s logical, science-loving mind to the test. Corridors shift. Strange paintings lurk in the shadows. Encoded messages abound. Despite Perigee’s best efforts, neither the House nor Grandma will give up their secrets. And worse, prickly Grandma has outlawed games and riddles of any kind.

Even the greatest of plans can crumble, and as new arguments fill the air, the House becomes truly dangerous. Deadly puzzles pop up at every turn, knives spin in the hallways, and staircases disappear. The answer lies at the heart of the House, but in order to find it, Perigee and their new friend Lily will need to solve a long-lost, decades-old riddle…if the House itself doesn’t stop them first.

Publication Date May 14th 2024 by HarperCollins
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A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection

Perfect for fans of Debbi Michiko Florence and Lisa Greenwald, Clairboyance’s heartfelt and sweet coming of age story with a touch of magic follows Clara as her life is turned upside down when she discovers that she has boy-specific ESP abilities.

After accidentally wishing on a family heirloom to hear what boys are thinking, Clara wakes up the next day able to do just that. Every idea, every worry, every generous or petty thought crossing their minds — somehow, they now form a chorus of voices in hers.

But why couldn’t her newfound powers have arrived sooner? Then, maybe, she could have stopped her ex–best friend Leo from betraying her and ditching her for the more popular kids. At least her dad is open to the idea of moving her off O‘ahu and out to Arizona to be with him.

If Clara can use what she hears to solve her problems, then her powers might just be able to make up for lost time — but instead, she ends up making a bigger mess of everything. While scrambling to fix her mistakes, Clara must question old friendships, enter into new ones, and try to figure out what makes a home, and if she is willing to leave hers behind.

Publication Date May 14th 2024 by Katherine Tegen Books
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Finn and Ezra’s bar mitzvah weekend takes on a Groundhog Day twist in this hilarious and magical middle grade novel from Joshua S. Levy.

Finn and Ezra don’t have a lot in common — except, of course, that they’re trapped in a bar mitzvah time loop, reliving their celebrations in the same New Jersey hotel over and over and over again. Not ideal, particularly when both kids were ready for their bar mitzvahs to end the moment they began. Ezra comes from a big family — four siblings, all seeming to get more attention than him, even on his bar mitzvah weekend. Finn is an only child who’s tired of his parents’ constant focus, even worse on his bar mitzvah weekend. They just want to get past it, just want to grow up. And now they’re both stuck. Friday. Saturday. Sunday. No way out.

Until Finn and Ezra meet and realize they’re not alone.

Teaming up, they try everything they can think of to break the loop. But nothing works, and after every reset, the boys’ schemes become more desperate. As their frustrations build, the questions mount and real-life problems start to seep through the cracks. With all the time in the world, can Finn and Ezra ever figure out how to move forward?

Publication Date May 14th 2024 by Pixel+Ink
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A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection

Twins race to find the thief stealing valuable historical artifacts before their family’s framed for the crimes in this high-octane middle grade action-adventure series starter for fans of City Spies and Alex Rider.

Ten-year-old Ike Carter has committed large chunks of American history to memory. That’s what happens when you’re a genius who loves the past. His twin, Iris, prefers the present (aka reality). She’s an elite athlete, dominating the competition thanks to her wicked-sharp spatial awareness.

During the opening night of a new exhibit at their mom’s boutique museum in Washington, D.C., Ike and Iris inadvertently stumble onto a robbery in progress. A girl not much older than them is stealing a miniature portrait of George Washington from the collection. It’s only the first in a string of crimes, all focused on items that were once gifted by the Marquis de Lafayette to his American friends. With some help from the National Archives Research Center, the twins puzzle out the culprit’s next targets, and are soon hot on the trail of the mystery girl.

But their efforts also put them in the crosshairs of the FBI’s Art Crime team, who suspect their family is involved. If the twins can’t catch the real perp as they target the final item, it’ll be game over.

An action-packed series opener from highly-acclaimed author Matthew Landis, Capitol Chase introduces a new secret agent team sure to engross fans of National Treasure, City Spies, and Alex Rider with plot twists and turns that make this one unputdownable from first page to last.

Publication Date May 14th 2024 by Quill Tree Books
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From the author of Ahmed Aziz’s Epic Year comes another wryly humorous tween novel about finding belonging in an unexpected place. A must-read for fans of Hena Khan, Kelly Yang, and Karina Yan Glaser.

Samira knows this is going to be the worst summer ever. Her best friend, Kiera, ditched her for the cool girls. Her parents and older sister are taking a trip to India, so Sammy is staring down endless weeks spent with Imran, her little brother, and her Umma. To top it all off — literally! — her house gets TP’d.

The TP’ing upsets Imran, who is convinced that they’re being targeted because they’re the only brown family on the block. When Sammy attempts to solve the problem, she creates a bigger mess instead. But she also meets new girl Alice, who is determined to figure out who was behind the TP’ing.

Suddenly, Sammy’s “boring” summer is full of clue-finding hunts, garage band practices, and getting to know her neighbors like never before. But when Kiera starts stealing Alice away, Sammy must decide if she wants to stand up for herself. One thing is certain: This summer is either going to be the worst (or maybe the best) of Samira’s life.

Publication Date May 21st 2024 by HarperCollins
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A heartfelt contemporary middle grade novel perfect for fans of Front Desk, following Luca Salvatore, a young gay Italian American trying to save his family’s pizza restaurant and a life that feels like it’s falling apart after he learns that his parents may be separating and his first crush and best friend might be into each other.

Twelve-year-old Luca Salvatore is always running interference: in arguments between his younger twin siblings, in his parents’ troubled marriage, and between Will, the cute new boy in town, and Luca’s best friend, June, who just can’t seem to get along.

When the host of his favorite culinary TV show announces an open call for submissions for its final season, Luca is sure getting his family’s failing pizzeria on the show will save it and bring his falling-apart family together. Surprisingly, securing a spot is easier than kneading dough — but when the plan to fix everything comes out burned, Luca is left scrambling to figure out just the right recipe to bring his family and his friends back together.

From Lambda Literary finalist Michael Leali, The Truth About Triangles is full of heart, perfect for readers of Lisa Jenn Bigelow, Kelly Yang, and Maulik Pancholy.

Publication Date May 21st 2024 by Clarion Books
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Two modern-day kids discover the truth about an American Revolutionary War–era female spy through a treasure-hunt adventure in their hometown of Setauket, New York.

With codewords and secret signals perfected, best friends Rachel and Joon are ready to spend their summer practicing spycraft — especially if they can uncover secrets like the one Joon’s parents have been keeping, that his family is about to move out of town.

When eavesdropping leads them to a ring rumored to have belonged to Anna “Nancy” Smith Strong — according to local Long Island legend, the only female member of George Washington’s famed Culper Spy Ring — they think they’ve hit the jackpot. Then they discover Nancy left a coded message in the ring!

Decoding her message leads to another cryptic clue, and then another, and soon Rachel and Joon are racing to decipher a series of puzzles that must surely lead to hidden treasure! But can they solve the final mystery before Joon’s moving day? And just what did the centuries-old spy hide away — and why?

Sarah Beth Durst’s skillful blend of Revolutionary War history and suspenseful contemporary storytelling will keep readers guessing to the last satisfying page.

Publication Date May 21st 2024 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers
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Two orphan siblings with truly terrible luck battle an evil celebrity chef in this uproarious illustrated middle grade romp with the dark humor of A Series of Unfortunate Events and The Beast and The Bethany.

It’s hard to imagine things could get worse after one’s parents die in a greenhouse explosion. But that is precisely what happens to Basil and his younger sister, Dahlia. They escape from the social worker who wants to split them up to different foster homes by jumping off a moving train, only to find themselves wounded (Dahlia) and bedraggled (Basil) and without a soul to care for them. What’s more, they’re lost in the wilds of New York City.

Famished and alone, they wander into Cravings, the delectable bakery owned by Laurel Fox, disgraced celebrity chef with a soft spot for poor, hungry orphans. When she offers them luxurious accommodations and all the éclairs they can eat, Basil and Dahlia dare to hope their luck has changed at last. But the savvy reader will know it can’t be as simple as all that! Laurel Fox is out for redemption, and she’ll do anything to get the sinister secret ingredient she requires.

Publication Date May 28th 2024 by Greenwillow Books
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Sometimes it’s hard to rest in peace. A young trainee witch, a family power gone haywire, a dearly departed grandma, an undead boy, and an evil witch — that’s a recipe for the perfect summer vacation. Both hilarious and heartfelt, this fast-paced mystery about life and death (and afterlife) is for fans of Spirit Hunters and The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl.

Twelve-year-old Kimmy Jones wants to excel at the unique (and secret) aspect of her family’s funeral home business. Under the watchful eye of Grandma Bev, Kimmy learns how to raise the recently deceased, request their last wish, and break the connection to send them on. But when Grandma unexpectedly dies herself, Kimmy can’t reach her spirit, and nothing seems like it’s ever going to be right again.

Then a boy dies under mysterious circumstances on the night of a meteor shower. With no witnesses, Kimmy’s the only one who can get answers about what happened. So she breaks into the hospital morgue, and for the first time in months, her power works. She Wakes the boy up. Except then Kimmy can’t break the connection and so he stays Awake. Even worse, the boy has no memory of what happened to him. As Kimmy works to unravel the mystery, she discovers secrets about her heritage and learns about a witch who has been wreaking havoc for centuries.

Casey Lyall’s supernatural mystery is heartfelt, thrilling, and hilarious. Waking The Dead and Other Fun Activities is perfect for fans of Avi’s School of the Dead and Suzanne Young’s What Stays Buried.

Publication Date ‎May 28th 2024 by Rocky Pond Books
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A perfect summer read about whale watching and friendship both lost and found, from the author of Emily Wilde’s Encyclopaedia of Faeries and The Islands of Elsewhere.

When Fern hears about a photo contest with a big cash award, she decides she’ll enter and win! After all, photography is her passion (and was an interest she shared with her dad, who has recently died). She knows she can take a prize-worthy photo of a whale during one of the whale-watching tours her mom runs.

But her neighbor (and nemesis), Jasper, is also planning to enter the contest. It’s another frustration for Fern while she’s already coping with the worry that her best friend, Ivy, might not want to spend time with her anymore. She’s hoping to use the prize money to buy something that will attract Ivy’s interest.

This summer story has everything: the trials and pleasures of friendship, a rousing feud and a touch of adventure, a beautiful exploration of healing after grief, a very moving finale, and a whole lot of whale-watching fascination.

Publication Date May 28th 2024 by Yellow Jacket
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Jamie is a humorous and uplifting middle grade novel about making your own place in a world that doesn’t think you fit in even if it means changing the system.

Jamie Rambeau is a happy 11-year-old, nonbinary kid who loves hanging out with their two best friends, Daisy and Ash. But when the trio find out that their local middle schools separate into a school for boys and a school for girls, their friendship suddenly seems at risk. And when Jamie realizes no one has thought about where they are going to go, they decide to take matters into their own hands.

As the friends’ efforts to raise awareness eventually become a rooftop protest against the binary rules for the local schools, Jamie realizes that if they don’t figure out a way forward, they could lose both their friends forever.

Published in partnership with media advocacy organization GLAAD, this empowering book positively represents LGBTQ families.

Publication Date May 28th 2024 by HarperCollins
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In this cute and queer contemporary middle grade comedy about friendship, first crushes, and first kisses, twelve-year-old Noah Frye comes up with a foolproof plan to teach herself how to have a crush on a boy to fit in better with her friends — only to discover she’s been looking in the wrong place, and her crush was right beside her all along…

Noah Frye just had the Best Summer Ever. Not only did she have an epic time at science camp, but her new camp friend Jessa is going to Noah’s school in the fall. Noah can’t wait to introduce Jessa to her best friends Zoey and Luna when classes start. But when the friend group is reunited after their summer apart, something seems to have changed: Zoey and Luna have discovered boys, and now it’s all they want to obsess over.

Suddenly, it feels like Noah is the odd one out in their friend group, especially since Noah hasn’t ever even considered boys in that way. When Noah finds herself caught in a lie about having a boy crush of her own, she decides she’ll do anything to fit in with her friends again — even if that means using the scientific method. Noah’s crush experiment is simple: find a boy, fake a crush until it turns real, and get her friends back. But that might be easier said than done, especially when Noah can’t stop thinking about Jessa. What ensues is a hilarious and heartwarming turn of events in this queer contemporary middle grade story about friendship, first crushes, and self-discovery.

Publication Date May 28th 2024 by Aladdin
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There’s a new man in her mom’s life, and Victoria is determined to get rid of him — no matter what. Both a standalone novel and a follow up to The First Magnificent Summer, this pitch-perfect middle grade story is destined to become a classic.

Thirteen-year-old aspiring writer Victoria Reeves remains dedicated to writing in her diary as her reading tastes evolve from Virginia Woolf to Sylvia Plath. She’s growing up — getting the hang of her monthly “visitor,” coming to terms with her relationship with her estranged father, and grappling with her ever-evolving views of womanhood. But the summer brings unexpected bumps along the way when Victoria develops complicated feelings about the cute boy next door and decidedly uncomplicated ones about her mom’s new boyfriend.

To protect her mom — and the family dynamic she’s used to — from this unwanted interloper, Victoria will do what it takes to send him packing. But when she goes too far, Victoria realizes all she’s done is ruin a good thing for her mom. Is it too late to set things right?

Publication Date May 28th 2024 by Quill Tree Books
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From the acclaimed author of Manatee Summer comes a poignant story about a girl who learns to lay down roots as she’s drawn into a fight over a local grove of trees that’s in danger of being torn down. Perfect for fans of Hoot and Operation Redwood.

Holly Foster knows that nothing lasts — not hometowns or schools, or even family. It’s just safer to keep herself uninvolved. So when she’s sent to spend part of the summer with her uncle, she knows better than to get attached to him…or any part of his small Vermont town of Arden.

But when she arrives, she’s drawn into the drama that’s split the town: The local plastic factory is trying to tear down the trees in the center of Arden to build a visitor’s center and museum. Holly shocks herself by stepping into the fray and taking on one of the most powerful families in the area. But as she learns more about the town — and makes a new friend or two—Holly is determined to protect the one place she thinks she could finally belong. But will she be able to convince the other townspeople that the trees deserve to stay?

Publication Date June 4th 2024 by Aladdin
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A fast-paced, high-kicking debut that’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon meets Stand Up, Yumi Chung as a young taekwondo artist uses an ancient book to help save her dreams — and her father.

Twelve-year-old Modesty “Mo” Seto dreams of being a taekwondo champion. Even though her mom disapproves, Mo can always count on her dad, who is her number one fan and biggest supporter. Lately, Mo has been on a losing streak, and it doesn’t help that she keeps losing to her archnemesis, Dax, who’s much bigger than her. If only she were faster, stronger, not so petite. Mo can’t even lean on her dad like usual with how distracted he’s been lately.

When Mo learns about the chance to audition to star alongside her idol and legendary martial artist and movie star Cody Kwok, she knows this her chance to prove to her dad, to the world, and to herself that she can compete with anyone, no matter her size. Unfortunately, Dax is auditioning, too. As Mo and her nemesis progress to callbacks, someone attempts to sabotage the movie set and Mo’s dad disappears — and both events seem linked to a mysterious book, the Book of Joy.

The book contains information on Xiaoxi Fu, a secret dance-like martial art developed by Mo’s ancestral grandmother. Armed with these secret moves and an unexpected ally, Mo embarks on a high-octane adventure to rescue her father, save the movie, and discover an unexpected joy in being small.

Publication Date June 4th 2024 by Random House Books for Young Readers
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All that stands between ten-year-old Beatrice and an amazing life are five wishes…and she’s got a plan to make them all come true! A magical and heartfelt adventure about grief, hope, and the power of human connection.

Beatrice Corwell has a crooked haircut, eight well-trained cats, and a plan: she’s turning herself into a Tin Man. Once her heart is made of metal, she’ll no longer miss her beloved dead grandma, her absent dad, or her recently moved-away best friend.

While Beatrice awaits her transformation, she keeps vigil with a special doll and a handful of wishes she’s determined to make come true. With her encyclopedic knowledge, there must be a way to grant her heart’s deepest desires.

When an unusual boy named Caleb moves to town and mentions his granny’s interest in magic, Beatrice decides to enlist their help. She quickly learns, however, that spells don’t always go as planned, and witches can’t be trusted.

With the arrival of an unexpected visitor and a series of otherworldly messages, Beatrice’s plans begin to falter. Will her heart turn into metal? Will any of her wishes come true?

The Wonderful Wishes of B. is the story of a smart, quirky girl learning what she wants and what she needs — and how, sometimes, the wishes we hold dearest are granted in the most unexpected ways.

Publication Date June 4th 2024 by Scholastic Press
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Eden Jones has exactly three friends. And they’re all fake.

From a web of lies and social anxiety to true friendship and queer joy; this is the wonderful second book from the author of the Indies Introduce and Indie Next List pick, Jude Saves The World.

Why go through the stress of making friends when you can just pretend? It works for Eden and their social anxiety…until their mom announces she’s throwing them a birthday party and all their friends are invited.

Eden’s “friends,” Duke, Ramona, and Tabitha, are all real kids from school…but Eden’s never actually spoken to them before. Now Eden will do whatever it takes to convince them to be their friends ― at least until the party is over.

When things start to go better than Eden expects, and the group starts to bond, Eden finds themselves trapped in a lie that gets worse the longer they keep it up. What happens if their now sort-of-real friends discover that Eden hasn’t been honest with them from the very beginning?

Author Ronnie Riley creates a world full of queer joy and all the ups and downs of true friendship.

Publication Date June 11th 2024 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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A meteorite comes crashing down on the lives of three middle schoolers changing everything they know about family, friendships, and community in this charming and heartfelt novel with a light STEM touch.

The space rock is just the latest thing to land, uninvited, in Vega Lucero’s road-stop hometown. But when she discovers how much a chunk of the meteorite might be worth, she realizes it’s exactly the treasure she’s been hoping to find — and maybe a way to convince her mom not to sell the family store to big city developers to help pay for her grandpa Tata’s medical expenses.

Determined to find more pieces of the sky somewhere in the perilous desert wilderness, stubbornly independent Vega must set aside her distrust of outsiders to team up with Jasper, a would-be rival — and her own tagalong cousin Mila — on an overnight adventure to find more meteorites before the professional hunters who have descended on Date City do. But along the way, she realizes that she’s not the only one with the weight of the world on her shoulders. Jasper and Mila have secrets and worries of their own that has brought them on this journey.

Together, this ragtag group will battle against coyotes, a flood, and scorpions. But what they will ultimately discover is that no treasure is big enough to prevent unwelcome change. Only family and friends can help weather the unexpected that life brings.

Publication Date June 11th 2024 by Quill Tree Books
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The Great British Bake Off meets Knives Out in this fun and propulsive middle grade novel following two best friends who must solve the mystery behind a baking competition gone awry.

Laila gave Lucy a cupcake on the second day of kindergarten, and they’ve been inseparable ever since. But the summer before eighth grade, they find out that since they live on opposite sides of town, they’ll go to different high schools. Yuck!

Then Laila’s invited to compete at the Golden Cookie competition, which awards its winner admission and a full ride to the prestigious Sunderland boarding school, and it’s the perfect opportunity. Sunderland doesn’t just have an elite culinary program; it’s also home to an elite journalism track, if only newscaster-hopeful Lucy could build up a strong enough portfolio to impress the scholarship committee.

But when one of the celebrity judges collapses after sampling Laila’s showpiece, rumors of foul play swirl, with Laila rising to the top of the suspect list. Even worse, a major storm has effectively cut off all access to the outside world.

Can the girls find the real culprit and clear Laila’s name before it’s too late?

Publication Date June 18th 2024 by Quill Tree Books
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Nevermoor meets Howl’s Moving Castle in this engaging fantasy — the first in a duology — from acclaimed author Ryan Graudin. Perfect for fans of wizards, dragons, magical castles, spectacular spells, and a spunky cat who may not be what he seems.

Wizard West was dead for nearly an entire day before he noticed. And it is up to Faye, the daughter of West’s groundskeeper, to inform the wizard that he is a ghost who has lost all of his magical powers. (But not before the wizard tries transforming her into a cat!) To make matters worse, the enchanted castle of Celurdur — the only home that Faye has ever known — will fall apart at the next full moon if its foundation spells can’t be renewed.

After (sort of) accepting his demise, West decides to host a competition to choose his successor. Faye finds herself fighting to keep the tournament running smoothly behind the scenes: putting out kitchen fires, feeding the compost dragon, and making sure competitors stay away from the cockatrice pen.

But killer roosters soon become the least of her worries. A servant of the evil Shadow Queen has sabotaged the contest — set on destroying not just Celurdur but the entire kingdom of Solum. It is up to Faye to stop him, but she’ll need more than a mop. Will a maid’s magic be enough to save everything she loves from utter destruction?

Publication Date June 18th 2024 by Peachtree
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Taking inspiration from Sleeping Beauty and rural settings, this contemporary magical realism novel includes a mistaken destiny, a dying town, and a determined ghost cat.

Eleven-year-oldAndie Jennings, of Morning Glory, Virginia (population: 8), is set to inherit a matrilineal gift on Test Day, and she plans to use it to bring her dad home for good from his long-haul trucking job. Except her gift doesn’t come.

Instead, Andie starts seeing and hearing unexplained things, and a see-through cat seems to be following her. Turns out, she didn’t fail Test Day. Her gift just isn’t what anyone expected. But Andie’s ability to communicate with the ghosts at the town’s shuttered Juneberry Blue factory may be the very thing that Morning Glory — and her own family — needs.

Publication Date June 18th 2024 by Viking Books for Young Readers
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This heartwarming tale by bestselling author Suzanne Selfors is about the unlikely friendship between a boy who is cursed to look like a rat and a girl who loathes rodents. This instant classic is perfect for fans of The One and Only Ivan, A Wolf Called Wander, and Flora & Ulysses.

Ratty Barclay wasn’t supposed to be born a four-foot-tall, walking, talking rodent, but thanks to the Barclay family curse, he’s had to live in hiding from the rest of the world. All he wants for his thirteenth birthday is to return to his family’s abandoned estate on Fairweather Island to somehow break the curse. Then he’ll finally get to live his life as a four-foot-tall, walking, talking, human boy.

Edweena Gup, the granddaughter of the Barclays’ groundskeeper, has dedicated her life to being a Rat-Catcher Extraordinaire like her great-great-great grandmother before her. It doesn’t matter that Fairweather Island has been rat-free for over a hundred years — she’s determined to make sure everyone is prepared for their imminent return. And when she spots a human-sized rat lurking on the Barclay grounds, her worst fears are confirmed.

Though it seems like Ratty and Edweena are destined to be enemies, they have a lot in common — they’re both lonely and misunderstood. But will they be able to overcome their fears of each other and maybe even become…friends?

Publication Date June 25th 2024 by Quill Tree Books
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Dinner At The Brake Fast is a hilarious and heartfelt story about road-trip mishaps, a murderous rooster, facing down anxieties, and unexpected friendship that is a must-pick for readers who loved The Science of Unbreakable Things and The First Rule of Punk.

Tacoma Jones loves working at her family’s roadside diner, the Brake Fast, pouring coffee and serving eggs and muffins to truckers all day long. But tonight, she is finally going to break out her collection of cookbooks and prepare the best dinner the state of Washington has ever seen.

But her excitement is dampened when she learns that today is one of Dad’s bad days, when his depression makes it hard for him to get out of bed.

Tacoma knows she can’t fix her dad’s depression. But what she can do is steal back his prized photograph of his second-best day from her nemesis, the nasty Crocodile Kyle — while also planning a dinner that is sure to brighten up his bad day.

She just might need an accomplice or two to pull off the heist…

Publication Date June 25th 2024 by HarperCollins
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From the critically acclaimed author of Float and Glitch comes a new stand-alone adventure full of humor and heart, perfect for fans of Gordon Korman and Dan Gutman!

Rhett and his brother, Nash, have never been allowed to play board games. It’s their mom’s most important rule; the twins don’t know why, but they know not to push her on it.

When their mom suddenly disappears, they’re reunited with Ace, their long-lost grandfather, who reveals that their family is descended from a board game character who escaped his game and lived in the real world. Their family now has the ability to enter the world of any game they want — but this gift also comes with a price. A game character who’s wanted revenge against their mom for decades has finally caught her and is holding her hostage in the world of a game. Which game? That’s up to Rhett and Nash to figure out, even if it means breaking Mom’s most important rule.

But as they learn to use their newly discovered ability, exploring new worlds and facing new challenges and risks, the brothers quickly realize that saving Mom won’t be all fun and games. It’s game on…or game over.

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Hi! I’m Jen! I’m a thirty-something introvert who loves nothing more than the cozy comfort of home and snuggling my two rescue cats, Pepper and Pancakes. I also enjoy running, jigsaw puzzles, baking and everything Disney. Few things bring me more joy than helping a reader find the right book for them!