These recently released special editions are can’t-miss versions of some spectacular works that should occupy a place in every collection.
SLJ Fiction Reviews
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Sci-fi and adventure fans will find some can’t-miss continuations and conclusions of some gripping series, from Andrew Lane’s gripping update to the saga of teenage Sherlock Holmes to Gena Showalter’s satisfying wrap up of the “White Rabbit Chronicles.”
The latest picture books, chapter books, and early readers include some real winners, including Gary Golio’s Bird & Diz, a gorgeous fold-out book that positively sings, and Eve Bunting’s Yard Sale, a heartfelt tale about the heartache of moving.
Middle-grade readers are treated to stories painstaking and poignant and funny and whimsical. Katherine Coville’s The Cottage in the Woods takes readers behind the fairy tale to the real story of Goldilocks, while Thanha Lai’s Listen Slowly sees a young girl travel to Vietnam to learn about her heritage. And don’t forget Edward Carey’s Heap House, a tale of a most unusual family—and their mansion.
The new year is filled with richly imagined new worlds YA readalikes for fans of Kristin Cashore’s Graceling, such as Victoria Aveyard’s Red Queen and Sabaa Tahir’s An Ember in Ashes. Readers of realistic fiction will delight in Lance Rubin’s unique Denton Little’s Deathdate and Juliana Romano’s romance-filled First There Was Forever.
This month’s middle-grade fiction includes a bevy of alluring new titles, from Audrey (Cow), a cow determined to make something of herself, to a steampunk version of Charles Dickens’s classic holiday tale, A Christmas Tale.
Printz winners Nick Lake and Marcus Sedgwick are back. Lake spins a tale featuring the ultimate unreliable narrator, in There Will Be Lies, while Sedgwick weaves together plots spanning centuries in his latest.
Get political with Ken Burns’s newest documentary, The Roosevelts, find out how Megan Shepherd’s “Madman’s Daughter” trilogy ends, and change how you see rainstorms with April Pulley Sayre’s Raindrops Roll with the November stars, which offer the best of fiction, nonfiction, and multimedia.
To the Forbidden City and Beyond, a Skateboard Party, and a Child Star’s Tribulations | Fiction Series Update
This month, we bring you the latest in updates to existing fiction series. Chapter-book readers will find plenty to cheer about, including an adventure in the Forbidden City, a young girl’s trials and tribulations on and off the set of a sitcom, and a class hamster’s attempts to help his students win a trivia competition.
Late 2014 and Early 2015 Picture Books, Easy Readers, and Beginning Chapter Books | Fiction Preschool to Grade 4
A sparkling assortment of picture books to share with young patrons one-on-one and in a group setting and engaging early chapter books to help newly independent readers reinforce their decoding skills.
Check out a bevy of new titles, from new twists on old favorites, such as a gorgeous new edition of Arthur Conan Doyle’s A Study in Scarlet, an updated “Beauty and the Beast,” and a graphic novel adaptation of Rick Riordan’s The Lost Hero.
Teen readers have plenty to sink their teeth into, from Maggie Stiefvater’s Blue Lily, Lily Blue, the much-anticipated latest in “The Raven Cycle”; Barry Lyga’s Blood of My Blood, the blood-soaked finale in the “I Hunt Killers” trilogy; and Donna Jo Napoli’s historical fiction Hidden.
Travel to an English boarding school with wild tomboy Will in Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms, learn how Roget determined The Right Word, and listen to The Girls in the Band with the October stars, which offer the best of fiction, nonfiction, and multimedia.
These latest updates in ongoing series, these books encompass a wide variety of topics: a dark and haunting title about Vietnam from Chris Lynch, more drama from the world of the Seelies from Jane Yolen and son Adam Stemple, and time-traveling adventures with Mira.
This month’s picks for the middle school set will evoke a range of emotions. Whether you’re looking for the achingly poignant (Katherine Rundell’s Cartwheeling Through Thunderstorms, the tale of a spirited tomboy who finds herself orphaned) or the charmingly quirky (Alex McCall’s Attack of the Giant Robot Chickens or Julie Berry’s The Scandalous Sisterhood of Prickwillow Place), there’s something to please readers of all stripes.
This month’s reviews include a vibrant assortment of cleverly engaging stories with gorgeous artwork. Look for books by award-winning illustrators Jon Klassen, Oliver Jeffers, Marie-Louise Gay, and Jim LaMarche, as well as some relative newcomers on the scene, such as Tom Clohosy Cole, Chris Haughton, August Hall, Steve Pilcher, and Ayano Imai.
There’s plenty to engage teen readers this month, from a creative retelling of Edgar Allan Poe’s spine-tingling, gothic tale “The Fall of the House of Usher,” told from the perspective of Madeline Usher, as well as Audacity, Melanie Crowder’s look at Clara Lemlich, a 19th-century activist for workers rights.
Welcome to the inaugural SLJ Reviews Sneak Peek, a monthly web-exclusive feature that will showcase reviews for highly anticipated books in advance of our upcoming print issue.
Get the inside scoop behind the whale who inspired Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick, take a walk on the wild side with The Accidental Highwayman, and blast off with Sally Ride, in the September stars, which offer the best of fiction, nonfiction, and multimedia.
This article was published in School Library Journal's September 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.