The Wait is Over! New Titles Available in Paperback in October
We’re deep into October and the idea of curling up in a favorite comfy chair and reading is more inviting than ever. Here are just a few of the books that are new in paperback this month—available at your favorite bookstore. Happy Reading!
The Code Busters Club by Penny Warner
The first of what I hope will be many books in a new mystery series featuring four friends who like to create codes and solve mysteries with them. You just know with their eye for detail that this team will find mysteries that need solving. I loved this because the kids use all kinds of codes to communicate with each other—Braille, American Sign Language, Semaphore, Morse Code and several alpha numeric codes, too. A great story and you don’t even realize you’re learning. Just right for that inquisitive 8-12 year old. -Kate
The Gathering Storm by Robin Bridges
In this first book of “The Katerina Trilogy” we are introduced to Katerina Alexandrovna, Duchess of Oldenburg, a girl with a dark secret…she’s a necromancer. That’s right, she can raise the dead. She’s never shared this secret with anybody, especially not her family and friends. Combining magic, history and even romance, this thriller set in 1880s Tsarist Russia is filled with twists and surprises. And did I mention romance? I loved this novel and can hardly wait for book two!- Kate
Scored by Lauren McLaughlin
Many dystopian young adult novels are set in an unknown future society. Scored is all the more frightening because its setting feels like it could be right around the corner from present day. Imani lives in a United States where kids are constantly tracked by ever-present cameras and tested, with their scores determining their friends, admittance into college, future employment and more. Even a small misstep by a lower-income teen can cost them everything. When Imani befriends an unscored boy, she risks losing everything she has worked for. This well-written novel is exciting and chilling and may lead teens to question how class issues determine future opportunity, the role of government in our culture and even their own power to bring about change.-Erin
Finding Somewhere by Joseph Monninger
In this quiet but emotionally charged young adult novel two best friends, Hattie and Delores, escape their small New Hampshire town and embark on a cross country journey west to free their beloved horse Speed and, they soon discover, escape from their own demons. Along the way they meet fascinating people, deepen their friendship, and begin to heal old wounds. This is a beautifully written and absorbing tale of self-discovery, friendship, and the love between two teens and their ‘one true horse’. – Sarah N.
The Silence of Murder by Dandi Daley Mackall
Fans of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime may be interested in this well-written YA mystery. Jeremy is “mute by choice” and most likely on the autism spectrum (though undiagnosed). When he is accused of murder, it’s up to his sister, appropriately named Hope, to prove his innocence. This proves more and more difficult as Hope unearths town secrets and, in the process, becomes unsure of her brother’s involvement. This works as a suspense novel but is also an interesting glimpse into the behaviors of those that are considered “other” in our society. -Deanna
Winter Pony by Iain Lawrence
There is no greater joy than picking up a new book without knowing much about it and being suddenly transported to a new world. This is what I felt after reading The Winter Pony by Iain Lawrence. This middle-grade novel, set in 1910-11, reads like a classic adventure story and is a rousing chronicle of explorer Robert Scott and his team’s fateful quest to become the first to reach the South Pole. There have been many accounts of Scott’s voyage and trek over the harsh Antarctica ice, but this is the first told from the point of view of one of 20 Siberian ponies accompanying Scott’s team. Scott named this pony, James Pigg, after one of his former shipmates, and Pigg not only gives us a first-hand account of the day-to-day challenges and treacherous conditions the men encountered on their historic journey, but also the plight of the dozens of dogs and ponies that pulled the heavy sledges over dangerous crevasses and endured sub-zero temperatures. Most of the animals and many of the men did not survive the journey before Scott’s team finally reached the South Pole on January 17, 2011, one month after Roald Amundsen and his team planted their flag on the site.
The story works on so many levels, the obvious being is that it is based on real-life events, but what I think sets it apart is that the narrative creates an almost virtual-reality experience for the reader. The book is first and foremost an adventure, but what I loved most about the book is the focus on what the animals–and let us not mince word–“beasts of burden” had to endure not by choice. So many books have been written about casualties of war and ill-planned explorations, but seldom do we hear about the tens of thousands of horses and other animals in service to men dying for the cause. I applaud the author for giving us the equine point of view of the sacrifices of all members of Scott’s team!
This month and next, expect to see lots of articles about Scott’s South Pole expedition as we approach the 100th anniversary on January 17th. The move and book “War Horse”, about WW1 heroics of another horse are also garnering lots of attention. This is a perfect time to introduce young readers to a worthy companion, WINTER PONY. -Tim
Thanks for joining us at Random Acts of Reading today, we hope you’ve found a few new paperbacks to add to your To Be Read pile and to share.
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