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Spring Book Preview: Middle Grade and Young Adult Novels

September 23, 2011

We’re back today with more of our spring preview. Here are a few of our favorite middle grade and young adult novels that you’ll be able to read this coming spring (consider this a sneak peek- some don’t even have final covers yet)! If you missed our look at spring picturebooks, you can read it here.

Middle Grade Novels:

Wonder by R. J. Palacio

August (Augie) Pullman is going to school for the first time, starting in the 5th grade. Why now you ask? Because Augie was born with a facial deformity that caused him to need many surgeries during his young life and now he’s ready. But is the world ready for Augie? Wonder is one of the most marvelous books I’ve read, R. J. Palacio tells this story from many points of view—Augie’s, his parents, his sister’s, even his sister’s boyfriend all talk to the reader, and with each chapter we gain perspective on Augie and his story and the good and bad of human nature. Augie is a hero on many levels, but he’s also a little boy whose story should be shared with everyone young and old. Keep the tissues handy.- Kate

Popular Clone by M. E. Castle

What’s uber-smart 12-year old Fisher Bas to do when he’s continually picked on at school? Well, clone himself and send the clone to school in his place, then he can stay home, eat junk food, work on his own science projects, and play video games. Nothing can possibly go wrong, right? Not exactly. First the clone “makes friends”, then he “acts out”, and it seems he has a bit of a mind of his own. Oh, dear. THEN, the clone is kidnapped by the uber evil Dr. Xander. It’s time for Fisher to use his big brain and to come to his clone’s rescue. Can he do it? Read and find out.- Kate

May B. by Caroline Rose

Life on the frontier of Kansas isn’t easy, but May still hates the idea of leaving her family to be a maid to another. Things only get worse when she’s left alone through the winter and must make life or death decisions. To keep herself company she continues her quest to learn to read despite her teacher’s belief that she just can’t do it. Written in simple, spare verse, reluctant readers will see themselves in this dyslexic heroine but readers of all levels will be riveted by her story.- Deanna

Oddfellow’s Orphanage by Emily Winfield Martin

The author/illustrator who created this charming and unusual book for young readers has an incredibly popular Etsy site where she sells her artwork. This book actually started as color portraits and descriptions of the assortment of characters found at this magical orphanage, including an onion-headed boy, a very large hedgehog and many more. Martin filled out the whimsical story with a new orphan, Delia, and her introduction to the oddities, new friends and classes like Fairy Tale Studies. Children will be enchanted with this lovely series of strange, interconnected stories.- Erin

Young Adult Novels:

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

The Book of Blood and Shadow by Robin Wasserman

For the reader who loves a good mystery, The Book of Blood and Shadow will not disappoint. From the opening scene, yup it starts with a murder, through the fast-paced chases in Prague, “secret societies and  shadowy conspirators”, keep everyone guessing about who they can really trust. This book is a wild ride, a smart, literary thriller with enough twists and turns that you’ll want to stay up late to find out what happens next and who really did it and why. Think DaVinci Code for teen readers, and a great book for the grown up mystery lover too.- Kate

Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley

This is one of those books that devours the reader almost immediately! A quest to find the identity of an anonymous graffiti artist becomes so much more!  Love, mystery, police, break-ups and glass blowing all rolled in to one!  Perfect for fans of Nick and Norah that are ready for something with a little more urban grit.- Nic

6 Comments leave one →
  1. September 23, 2011 8:19 am

    So many good looking titles! Wonder and May B. look especially appealing.

  2. September 23, 2011 10:11 am

    Oh my! It seems like there is not a bad one in the bunch, and as I was reading this post, I was getting increasingly more excited by the great choices here. These are books I will be adding to my list and looking forward to. Loved this post!

  3. September 23, 2011 10:48 am

    So lovely to be included here! Thank you, Deanna. I can’t wait to get my hands on Wonder and The Gathering Storm.


  1. Author Robin Wasserman Dishes on Winter Institute 7 « Random Acts of Reading

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