July 26, 2016

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SLJ Spotlight

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New Kid Blues | SLJ Spotlight

MG-SP-Vickers-Like Magic

Moving to a new town or school is a common, and difficult, life experience for many kids. Several new titles feature characters who experience—and overcome—the new kid blues.

Small Steps | SLJ Spotlight

NF-SP-Panchyk-DC-History for Kids

Forget the electoral process; students may need a refresher on what Washington, DC, even looks like! These titles will have readers ready to set off on the right foot toward greater political knowledge.

Your Worst Nightmare | SLJ Spotlight

SIROWY, Alexandra. The Telling

Looking for a good scare? Check out the latest spine-tingling YA offerings sure to keep teens up at night.

“Pride and Prejudice” YA Redux | SLJ Spotlight


It is a truth universally acknowledged that Jane Austen’s classic continues to inspire new YA adaptations every year. Give these titles to budding Janeites or teens looking for YA romances with a unique spin.

Mellow Dramas | SLJ Spotlight


Middle Grade novels often have two extremes: ultra fantastical or the issue-driven realistic. However ,these titles are equally satisfying to read stories where the drama is simply of a more mellow nature, where the smaller trials and tribulations of growing up take center stage.

BFFS | SLJ Spotlight

PB-Harry and Walter

Kindred spirits come in all shapes and sizes (and ages!) and help make every activity and new discovery that much more fun. These picture book tributes to making and keeping old friends and new.

Tenacious Trailblazers | SLJ Spotlight


When discussing innovations, whether they are related to science, sports, or even backyard fun, it is important to give proper respect to those responsible. These titles provide an engaging and lively look at the individuals behind such beloved cultural artifacts as the Super Soaker and baseball or, in the case of Tiny Stitches, a poignant portrait of Vivien Thomas and his contributions to the medical community.

Barton, Chris. Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions. illus. […]

Summer Lovin’: 13 New YA Romances | SLJ Spotlight


Looking for lighthearted romances to populate summer reading shelves? Take a look at the latest crop of beach reads that teens will be devouring come vacation time.

YA Tales from Down Under | SLJ Spotlight

Hartnett, Sonya. Golden Boys

From a nuanced look at abuse to a fun read about a teen who communicates with ghosts, these latest works set in Australia are sure to wow U.S. teens.

Hiding in Plain Sight | SLJ Spotlight

BARROUX. Where’s the Elephant

Whether it’s a story about a game of counting and scouting for hidden friends or looking for cleverly concealed visual clues, these books sharpen children’s observation skills and allow them to succeed vicariously by paying attention, honing sharp-eyed reflexes, and having fun along the way.

Love Is in the Air! | SLJ Spotlight


Filled with reassuring sentiment, tender affirming language, and warm and fuzzy artwork, these titles are all about the joys that friendship, camaraderie, and caring can bring.

The Real Deal: Three New Realistic Middle Grade Novels


Three new titles that tackle the pathos and humor of the here-and-now.

A Dog’s Life | SLJ Spotlight

HOROWITZ, Alexandra. Inside of a Dog- Young Readers Edition

From books exploring different breeds to training guides, dog-related titles are well represented in the 590s, but readers will definitely want to check out these two additions, which examine our canine companions in new and intriguing lights.

Brand New Middle Grade Debuts | SLJ Spotlight

KNIGHT, Mary. Saving Wonder

From quirky mysteries and intricate steampunk adventures to environmental allegory and multi-layered fantasy, this crop of fresh new voices on the middle grade scene should find a place on library shelves and in the hands of eager young readers.

Our Bodies, Our Shelves | SLJ Spotlight

Higgins.Feminism_Reinventing the F Word

From sex and gender to reproductive rights, these recent offerings make complex topics accessible and ensure that teenagers will be informed about issues that affect them.

Blast to the Recent Past | SLJ Spotlight

HITCHCOCK, Bonnie-Sue. The Smell of Other People’s Houses

The following YA titles take place from the 1970s to the mid-aughts, each offering a glimpse of the recent past, and perhaps a little bit of hindsight.

Saying Goodbye | SLJ Spotlight

ELLIS, Sarah. Ben Says Goodbye.

These tender and affecting picture books deal with loss in an honest and age-appropriate way. While diverse in their subject matter and style, all of the books have a gentle tone, and offer positive and hopeful ways to cope with them.

Family Matters | SLJ Spotlight


From struggling to find footing as a foster kid to having a mom with depression, these YA titles are about working through real-life situations.

Hillary: Beyond the Headlines | SLJ Spotlight

Hillary Rodham Clinton A Woman Living History

Several recently reviewed books take a close look a presidential hopeful Hilary Clinton.

Magical Mysteries | SLJ Spotlight

The Deadly 7

Who’s the Roald Dahl of today? Well, filling those storied shoes is a tall order, but there are some excellent and emerging middle grade authors who are taking up the task.