A Mighty Girl's top picks of girl-empowering books for middle grade readers!
One of the great joys of summer for avid young readers is the opportunity to explore books all on their own! Tweens are ready for intriguing, original, and complex stories, which means that middle grade readers can find titles perfect for them in every genre. And with new titles coming out all the time — many of them starring Mighty Girl characters — there is an ever-growing selection of books to choose from!
Whether your tween is looking for an imaginative fantasy novel or a suspenseful mystery, a hilarious romp or a thrilling story of adventure, the empowering titles in our new blog post will keep her flipping through pages all summer long! Both classic novels and new releases are included, so you can encourage your tween to read a book you remember fondly from your own childhood, or help her discover a new favorite. With a wide range of diverse, courageous, and determined Mighty Girls at the center of the story, your young reader is sure to find a character she loves.
Books starring mighty Girls for tweens
Now you can introduce a new generation to Beverly Cleary's classic character Ramona Quimby with this giant set! This box set collects all eight books featuring Ramona, from Beezus and Ramona to Ramona's World. Whether she’s getting into tussles with her older sister Beezus, struggling to find her place at school, or trying — not always successfully — to help out Mom and Dad, these stories will have your kids giggling!
Flory is a night fairy, no taller than an acorn, with a beautiful set of wings like a luna moth... until she loses them in an encounter with a bat. Unable to fly home, Flory suddenly finds herself having to learn how to survive among the daylight creatures in the Giantess' garden! The world may be very big and dangerous, but Flory is fierce and determined, and more than ready to tell others like Skuggle, her new squirrel friend, what to do. Not all of the garden's residents, however, are willing to bend to her demands. Through Flory's personal growth, this magical story offers an important lesson in how skills like compassion, diplomacy, and quick thinking are valuable complements to one's bravery in reaching your goals.
The world's greatest fourth-grade detective, Moxie McCoy, is on the hunt for the person who's kidnapped the school's beloved mascot... but without her best friend/crime-solving partner, who's moved away, things just don't feel right. So her interrogations now serve a double purpose: searching for clues, and interviewing for a new partner. Nobody quite seems to suit, and Moxie can't solve the case on her own. But when her quiet, tentative, boring little brother Milton proves he's an excellent listener, maybe the pair can form an unexpected alliance. Warm and funny, with clever "debrief" questions that encourage readers to examine Moxie's narrative, this will be a hit with mystery fans. The mystery-solving siblings return in The Real McCoys: Two's A Crowd.
Third-grader Meena is an exuberant, creative, color-loving kid.... but recently, she's been feeling a little more blah. Her best friend since kindergarten, Sofía, has stopped playing with her, and she doesn't know why. Worse, she's noticing weird things happening: stretches of time she can't remember, jerky arms, and more. When Meena has a seizure, it means hospitalization, medical tests, and a diagnosis of epilepsy. As she grapples with managing her condition, Meena becomes even more determined to find a way to bring the color back into her life. That means figuring out what's going on with Sofía — and understanding her own part in what happened. This charming illustrated chapter book, perfect for fans of Ramona Quimby, explores friendship, personal secrets, and the ups and downs of life. Meena's adventures continue in Never Fear, Meena's Here.
Clementine is having an absolutely terrible week. It starts on Monday, with a trip to the principal's office for helping cut her friend Margaret's hair, and by Saturday, Margaret, her mother, and Clementine's own mother are all mad at her. Clementine's "spectacularful" ideas aren't appreciated by the people around her, and she's starting to wonder if her precocious brain is really worth the trouble! Fortunately, thanks to a resilient and optimistic attitude, Clementine is able to turn things around and figure out a way to make things right. With delicious language and an irrepressible, good-hearted main character, this is sure to be a hit. For more Clementine, there is also A Box of Clementines, a box set containing the first three books in the series.
There's never been anyone like Gooney Bird Greene at Watertower Elementary School. What other new kid comes to school wearing pajamas and cowboy boots one day and a polka-dot t-shirt and tutu on another? She is the star of story time and keeps her teacher and classmates on the edge of their seats with her "absolutely true" stories. But what about her classmates? Maybe they have interesting stories to share too.... This laugh-out-loud book will teach young readers the elements of storytelling — and encourage them to come up with stories of their own! Fans of Gooney Bird can check out the second book in the series, Gooney Bird Greene and the Room Mother.
Everyone in her new school thinks Avani is weird, especially the girls in her Flower Scouts troop. Is it so strange to think scouting should be about fun and adventure, not about makeovers and boys, boys, boys? Then Avani is accidentally abducted by Mabel, an alien from across the galaxy. It turns out that Mabel is a Star Scout, and collecting alien specimens is just one of the activities on her troop’s list. If Avani can make it through Camp Andromeda — and prevent her dad from realizing she’s left the planet — she’ll prove that humans can hold their own in the Star Scouts and finally find a place to belong. Kids will devour this fun sci-fi romp full of teamwork, inventiveness, and laughs. Avani's adventures continue in the sequel, Star Scouts: The League of Lasers.
Clever little Matilda is a precocious reader, but her parents don't appreciate books or their daughter. when she starts school, her teacher Miss Honey encourages Matilda's remarkable gifts — including one that defies all expectation. But with the bullying headmistress Miss Trunchbull out to force Matilda into submission, and her uncaring parents refusing to acknowledge their daughter's talents, how will Matilda ever get to enjoy the books and learning she loves? This modern classic Mighty Girl story has delighted generations of children with its intelligent, book-loving main character.
After Mary Lennox is orphaned by a cholera epidemic, she goes to live on her uncle's Yorkshire estate. Lonely and sad, she's left alone to explore, eventually meeting the high-spirited Dickon and her sickly and imperious cousin Colin. Then she discovers the greatest treasure of all: a locked, walled garden, overgrown and desperately in need of tending. And as she, Dickon, and Colin start caring for the garden, a remarkable thing happens: Mary and Colin start to bloom too. This classic novel, full of beauty and emotion, is sure to inspire your Mighty Girl as it has inspired generations of others.
Eight-year-old orphan Sophie's life takes a surprising turn for the better when a giant swipes her out of her bed in London and takes her to Giantland! The BFG, or Big Friendly Giant, is definitely both friendly and giant to Sophie, but it turns out that he's not so big compared to some of his more ferocious relations. In fact, Sophie and the BFG will have to work together to bring beautiful dreams to all the other boys and girls, make an alliance with the Queen, and finally trap the evil giants for good! This beloved book — which has been adapted into a film version — is just as entrancing for readers today as it was when it was published decades ago.
Abby is 9 years old, so she's not exactly a kid but she's definitely not a grown-up yet. And those in-between feelings get harder when it feels like everything starts changing. Her cousin and best friend, Zoe, has to move away; her mother goes back to work; and she's stuck in the running club, which she hates but which was the only after-school activity still available. She's also starting to recognize the needs of the homeless community in her area — and on top of all that, her body is starting to change, too! Without Zoe, how is she going to handle all of this? Fortunately, Abby starts to find her voice — and in the process, realizes that change can be for the good, too. Author Megan E. Bryant tackles multiple tough issues with grace, creating a timely story — first in a new series — about growing up and finding your way in a shifting world.
Growing up, Mary Anning's family was desperately poor — so the nimble girl learned to help her father search the cliffs near her home on the south coast of England to find fossils to sell. Anning turned out to have a gift for fossil hunting; at the age of 13, she and her brother discovered the first complete ichthyosaur skeleton! Anning never had the opportunity for formal education, so she taught herself by reading scientific journals and performing dissections — and while her discoveries weren't given their due during her lifetime, today she's one of the most celebrated paleontologists ever. This exuberant biography, which includes high-quality illustrations — including reproductions of some of Anning's sketches — is a visually appealing and thoroughly researched introduction to a pioneer in STEM.
Roz the robot opens her eyes for the first time to find herself alone on a remote island, full of nothing but wilderness. A fierce storm and a vicious bear attack convince Roz that the best way to make it is to adapt, observe, and learn from the island's animals. Slowly, the animals adapt to Roz too, and before long, the island is feeling like home. But can Roz really live a wild, free life — even when her creators finally come looking for her? Author / illustrator Peter Brown tells an exciting and touching story about nature, technology, and what it means to belong. Roz's story continues in The Wild Robot Escapes, or both books are available in The Wild Robot box set.
This Newbery Award-winning novel tells the story of 12-year-old Claudia, who decides to run away from home — and brings her little brother Jamie along for the ride. She chooses the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City as their new home and they quickly settle into living secretly in the museum. But when a new exhibit arrives — a marble angel statue that might just be a real Michaelangelo — the children fall into the middle of a mystery that takes them on another grand adventure: finding the previous owner of the statue, Mrs. Frankweiler herself, in hopes of proving it! This classic, suspenseful read with an urban adventure story has been a favorite for generations.
12-year-old Cici is trying to get comfortable in her new Seattle home, but she misses so many things about Taiwan — especially her grandmother, A-má, who's about to celebrate her 70th birthday. When she learns that there's a cooking contest with a $1000 prize, it seems like the perfect opportunity: that much money would let her buy A-má a ticket to Seattle. But Cici only knows how to cook Taiwanese food, and her classmates' reaction to her lunchbox tells her THAT won't do. As she draws inspiration from Julia Child and wrestles with fitting in with friends while also staying true to herself, Cici may discover that differences can be something to savor! This delightful graphic novel celebrates food, family, and finding your place in a new home.
Leonora's mother, aunt, and older sisters run the best bakery in Rose Hill, Texas, and Leonora wants to help prepare for Dia de los Muertos — but once again, they tell her she's too young. One day, when Leo sneaks down to the bakery, she learns why: they are all brujas, witches of Mexican ancestry, and they bake a little delicious magic into every bite! Leo's sure she's old enough to learn magic too, so when her best friend has a problem, she decides to dig into the family recipe book. But Leo doesn't read Spanish, so deciphering the recipes isn't easy... and when things go awry, Leo learns that her family will support her but she has to fix her own mistakes! This charming story effortlessly weaves together Mexican, Texan, and American cultures and adds a dash of mystery and magic to delightful effect. The story continues in this three-part series in A Sprinkle of Spirits.
11-year-old Tilly Pages' mother disappeared shortly after she was born, and she found solace in the thousands of books at her grandparents' bookshop, and her one friend, Oskar. But when some of the avid reader's favorite characters — including Anne of Green Gables and Alice from Wonderland — make an appearance, Tilly learns she can travel into any story she chooses. Tilly's bookwandering is more powerful than most, though, and when a creepy employee of the shop follows her into the books, she and Oskar must dig into the mystery... which might even reveal what really happened to Tilly's mother. This imaginative ode to the magic of books is sure to make young readers wish they could bookwander with Tilly. For more of Tilly's adventures, check out our Pages & Co. Collection.
12-year-old Maddie loves her quirky sense of humor (including the fake mustaches she slaps on at every opportunity) and her new lead role in the class play, even if they mean unwanted attention from a class bully. But when she develops unusual symptoms, she's diagnosed with a brain tumor and her world is flipped upside down. At first, Maddie wants to hide her illness, but as her surgery date approaches, her creativity, offbeat humor, and kind heart might make a difference for more people than she ever thought possible. Kids will love Maddie's big heart and even bigger imagination.
A young orca named Vega knows she will be the matriarch of the pod someday, hunting and navigating the Salish Sea with her brother, Deneb, supporting her — but Vega still wonders if she's the right whale to lead. Then, an earthquake and tsunami separate Vega and Deneb from the pod, and leave the ocean unrecognizable with wreckage from the disasters everywhere. To save her brother and her surviving family, Vega will have to journey into the open water and find her way back home again. Told in alternating perspectives by Vega and Deneb, this thrilling animal adventure, accented by black and white spot illustrations, incorporates lessons about sea life and environmental issues into a powerful story about the strength of family.
Ronia is the celebrated daughter of Matt, leader of a ferocious band of robbers, but she’s happiest alone, exploring the deep forest. There, she meets Birk, the son of Matt’s greatest rival, Borka, and the two become unexpected friends. But when new hostilities break out between two bands, Ronia is faced with conflicting loyalties when her father wants to use Birk as a hostage to force his rival’s surrender. Can Ronia and Birk find a way to reconcile the two robber barons, or will they have to choose between friendship and family? This book by Astrid Lindgren, author of Pippi Longstocking, is full of adventure and suspense, as well as insightful explorations about loyalty, gender, and standing up for what you believe in.
12-year-old Madi's parents have told her if she brings home one more stray or injured animal, she'll lose an opportunity to meet one of her heroes, Jane Goodall! But then she and her friends Aaron and Jack find two dead beavers by the side of the lake — and when Madi investigates their lodge, she finds two orphaned kits. The three kids hide the beavers inside their clubhouse, but in addition to keeping them safe, they have to figure out who killed the two beaver parents, and why. But as they dig into the mystery, they might discover a local environmental crisis that will take more than the three of them to solve! Perfect for fans of Pax and A Boy Called Bat, this book about a determined animal-loving girl will make kids wonder what they can do about protecting wildlife in their own communities.
Amanda is excited for her eleventh birthday — until everything goes wrong, including a fight with her best friend, Leo. She's glad when the day is over... but wakes up to discover that she's starting it all over again. The only other person aware of the time loop is Leo, and soon the pair have patched their friendship and start exploring the possibilities of unlimited do-overs. It turns out that seemingly small decisions have big and often unforeseen consequences — but can they find the one that gets them out of the loop and back to real life? Kids will love seeing Amanda and Leo rebuild their friendship and discover that what they do really does make a difference. Fans can return to author Wendy Mass' unique world in the second book in the series, Finally.
Fans of Kiki's Delivery Service will be delighted to read this new translation of the book that inspired the Studio Ghibli film! Half-witch Kiki is ready to follow the witch tradition of choosing a new town to call home for one year after her thirteenth birthday. But the village of Koriko is not as welcoming as she might have hoped, and the villagers aren't so sure about her idea to use her witch's powers to help them. It takes some determination, but slowly, Kiki makes friends in her new home... and realizes that there's magic in every day, ordinary places, too. This brand new translation of the first book in the Kiki series will delight readers young and old!
12-year-old Emma lives in a world where every child has a hint of magic — but where only the wealthy and powerful are allowed to kindle it, so that they can use it as adults. As the daughter of a magical architect, she gets the opportunity to attend one of the best kindling schools in New York City: Miss Posterity’s Academy for Practical Magic. Meanwhile Izzy, a servant girl, is determined to find a way to hold onto her magic. When Emma's father dies, she strikes a bargain with Izzy: if Izzy helps her pay her debts to Miss Posterity by teaching her to work as a servant, Emma will teach Izzy what she knows about magic. Together, can they find a way to kindle their magic, despite all the obstacles? This magical story, which pays homage to the classic novel A Little Princess, explores friendship, class, and the power of the human spirit. Izzy's story continues in the follow-up, The Tarnished Garden.
Everyone in Emma's family is special, and they all learned what their extraordinary destiny would be through a dream. Emma's been waiting for her dream since her mother died, after promising her she would do whatever it takes to make fulfill it. But when Emma's dream finally does come, it directs her to find a legendary treasure which is hidden in her town's cemetery. It's been missing for centuries and is rumored to be protected by a singing ghost, so the task seems impossible — but how can Emma let down generations of her ancestors and break such an important promise to her own mother? Full of lyrical writing and quirky humor, this book by the author of the best-selling A Snicker of Magic is sure to delight young readers!
Everything seems to be going against Karma: her best friend has found a blonder best friend; her beloved dadima has passed away; her father has become the new stay-at-home parent while her mother spends most of her time at work; and perhaps worst of all, she's spotted seventeen hairs sprouting on her upper lip. As her classmate's taunts about her mustache grow, Karma wonders if someone like her — half White and half Indian, half Methodist and half Sikh — belongs anywhere. In the tradition of Judy Blume, this charming novel tackles topics such as body hair, self-image, and bullying as one girl learns how to define her own destiny.
Emily Windsnap is half-human, half-mermaid, and the moment she discovers her true heritage, she's off on a series of underwater adventures! But there are dangers that Emily, who was raised as a human, isn't prepared for in the world of the merpeople — and when she makes mistakes, the consequences can be enormous. Fortunately, she has good friends to help her find her way. This beautiful collection includes the first six books from the Emily Windsnap series in paperback editions. For more books in the series, visit our Emily Windsnap Collection.
Anna is growing up in Berlin, and thinks of herself as a German like everyone else she knows. Hitler’s face on posters around the city doesn’t mean anything to her — until one night her father disappears. Her mother explains that he had to leave, and soon, they will join him. Escaping Nazi Germany means a life as a refugee, leaving everything Anna knows behind, but at first it just seems like an adventure. Soon, though, Anna realizes the move is permanent, complete with new languages to learn, financial struggles, and a new realization: the most important thing of all is that their family is together. Kids will empathize with Anna's confusion as this book provides a gentle introduction to World War II and Holocaust history.
Young Nim is comfortable handling life in her island home on her own: her mother died when she was young, and her father often has to leave for days at a time on scientific expeditions. But she knows how to climb a tree, chop down bananas with a machete, and even start a fire with a piece of glass — and she has a sea lion and an iguana to keep her company. She even has a new email friendship with adventure novelist Alex Rover. But when her father's ship is damaged — and then his cell phone calls stop coming altogether — Nim starts to worry... and when she injures her knee, things start looking grim. It will take all of Nim's ingenuity and the help of her friends — including Alex, who isn't nearly as capable as her novels' protagonists — to help her make it through. This delightful novel has also been adapted into a live action feature film.
11-year-old Pearl lives on a cattle and ostrich ranch outside San Diego, where her days are spent collecting feeding cows, collecting eggs, and avoiding the cranky birds. But when her brothers get jobs doing stunts for the newfangled silent film industry, Pearl gets curious — and a set visit leads to director Mr. Corrigan signing the "nervy girl" on to do stunts too! Riding tricks are second nature to Pearl, but acting is less so (which is particularly annoying when her rival, Mary Mason, seems to find it so easy.) And, of course, her mother wouldn't be happy to learn what Pearl has been up to... This laugh-out-loud cross between Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken and Ramona Quimby, inspired by real-life stuntwoman Pearl White, is packed with adventure and fascinating facts about early film.
Miri is the only non-twin in a family of five kids, and there are times she feels downright out of place. Then, she discovers a surprising property of her bedroom in the family's new home, an old farmhouse: somehow, she transports herself back to 1935, where she meets Molly, a girl her own age who desperately needs to escape her abusive life. The two become fast friends, but when Miri accidentally goes back to her own time — without Molly — she has to figure out how to get back to Molly and maybe even end up with the sister she's always wanted. This fast-paced and magical story is sure to delight young readers who have wondered what secrets might lurk in their own home. Fans of this story can follow Miri and Molly in the sequel, Magic In The Mix.
When Laura Ingalls and her family set out in a covered wagon for new lands to settle in Kansas, they're determined to find the perfect place to call home. Laura and her older sister Mary must be determined and brave along their journey, and then, when they finally settle, there is much work for them to do — but there are still plenty of opportunities for fun and exploration in the rolling hills nearby! Just as they are really starting to feel at home, the Ingalls family finds themselves in the middle of an unexpected conflict. Even if they have to leave their little prairie house behind, though, they know they will always have the most important thing: each other. Fans may want to consider the complete box set of this series so they can read it start to finish! For more resources about this beloved author, visit our Laura Ingalls Collection.
Midnight Gulch used to be a place where people could sing up a thunderstorm or dance up sunflowers; thanks to a curse, though, magic like that is a thing of the past. Felicity is familiar with the effects of such curses, since her mother has been cursed with a wandering heart, leaving her unable to settle anywhere. And she knows about magic: Felicity is a “word collector” and sees words shimmering everywhere. But then, Midnight Gulch produces words she's never seen before: words like “home” and “friend.” Perhaps Felicity can heal her mother's heart and bring back Midnight Gulch's magic... A charming story full of heart, this fantasy novel is pure delight.
Everyone in 11-year-old Cady's world has a Talent, a semi-magical ability. In Cady's case, she has a gift for making cakes: just by looking at someone, she knows exactly what they'd like. It seems like a mundane (if delicious) ability, but it will lead Cady on an unexpected journey, out of the orphanage where kindly Miss Mallory has been struggling to find a family for her, to a lost-luggage emporium, a family of children searching for their own Talents, and a mysterious Talent Thief. And maybe, to truth about how Cady became an orphan — and even to a long-lost parent. Fans of this magical world can return to it in A Clatter of Jars.
Minli lives in the valley of the Fruitless Mountain, where she and her parents struggle to survive. At night, her father tells her miraculous tales about the Jade Dragon and the Old Man in the Moon, who holds everyone's destiny, but her mother is too busy worrying to enjoy the stories. So one day, Minli decides that she will find the Old Man in the Moon and change her family's fortune. Along the way, she befriends a talking fish, a flightless dragon, and more amazing creatures... but when she reaches the Old Man, she will have to decide whether asking for riches for herself and her family is the best use of a chance to change fate. Inspired by Chinese folktales and full of vibrant illustrations, this unique story teaches an important lesson about greed and happiness. Fans of this book can check out the companion, When The Sea Turned To Silver.
In this quirky story, 12-year-old introvert Bicycle has been raised by Sister Wanda in the Mostly Silent Monastery since she was left there as a three-year-old. But Sister Wanda is worried that Bicycle doesn't have any friends, so she declares that she's going to sleepaway camp at the Friendship Factory (“Three Guaranteed Friendships or Your Money Back.”) Bicycle has other ideas, and sets off on her own bike for California, aiming to meet her hero, Polish cycling racer Zbig. Along the way, she encounters a good-natured ghost, a mysterious woman in black, and an unexpected number of new friends! Hilarious and charming, this adventure celebrates the call of the open road and the joy of friendship.
When Reena's family moves to Maine, she's expecting beaches, blueberries, and lobster — not being "volunteered" to work for Mrs. Falala on a farm with animals like Paulie the Pig, Edna the snake, China the cat, and a very stubborn cow named Zora. Even more unexpectedly, Reena discovers a surprising bond with the ornery but somehow lovable cow — and learns more about Mrs. Falala, which in turn affects her family in ways she'd never predicted. Told in a combination of prose and free verse poems, this book recognizes the power of being open to new experiences and the bonds we can form with the most unexpected people (and creatures.)
Imagine a world where Lady Ada Byron (who created the first computer algorithm) and Mary Shelley (the author of Frankenstein) met as girls — and decided to turn their combined brainpower to solving mysteries! That's the premise behind this unique new series in which the pair form The Wollstonecraft Detective Agency. In order to find the missing heirloom — and prove the false confession wrong — they'll have to use science, math, and creative analytical thinking to unveil the true culprit. Ada and Mary's adventures continue in the rest of The Wollstonecraft Detective Agency series.
Alice's Aunt Polly was the Pie Queen of Ipswitch, and when she dies, her recipe for her world-famous pie crust is surely lost forever. Or is it? In her will, Polly actually leaves the recipe to her surly, overweight cat Lardo — and leaves Lardo to Alice. Now everyone in town is wondering how you leave a pie recipe to a cat, and with the next big pie contest approaching fast, competitive drive is running wild. Alice and her friend Charlie are going to have to puzzle out what Polly was up to, whether the recipe actually exists... and perhaps most difficult of all, what is going to make her happy. This funny and sweet story about family and friends even includes a handful of pie recipes for your kids to try!
Upon her christening, the fairies gift Princess Amy with Wit, Charm, Health, Courage... and Ordinariness. Unlike her exquisite sisters, Amy's appearance is plain, and she's far more interested in adventures than in marrying a prince. So when her parents try to marry her off, Amy decides to run away, and her gift of being ordinary allows her to blend in perfectly as a kitchen maid in the neighboring kingdom's palace. There, she makes a new friend — but Perry, a "man of all work", has a secret as remarkable as her own. In fact, they may just be the perfect pair... This charming story, with its reminder that looks are unimportant without substance behind them, also captures the power of choosing your own future.
Maggie knows her 10th birthday will be the best ever: she's getting a dog! Even though the dog is supposed to be for the whole family, she knows that her twin brothers are completely focused on one another, and her parents are busy with the new baby they're expecting; the dog will definitely be Maggie's. But then she has a severe allergic reaction while cuddling a dog at the shelter, and after testing, the doctor recommends she avoids all animals with fur or feathers! Can Maggie figure out the perfect pet, while also managing a new school and her family's changing world? This graphic novel, inspired by author Megan Wagner Lloyd's experiences with allergies and accented by warm illustrations by Michelle Mee Nutter, is a charming story about finding your place — even when it's not what you expect.
In the wacky Villa Villekulla lives a very extraordinary girl! Pippi Longstocking, the strongest girl in the world, lives alone with her monkey Mr. Nilsson, and her arrival is going to turn Tommy and Annika’s life upside down. Full of incredible hijinks, daring deeds, and expectation-defying adventures, any child would want to follow Pippi just to see what happens next! Fans of Pippi should also check out The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking, which collects the three full-length Pippi books into one volume. You can also find more Pippi books, films, and toys in our Pippi Longstocking Collection.
Princess Celie loves living in Castle Glower, and she especially loves Tuesdays, the day that a new room, turret, or wing magically appears! No one can guess what the castle will do next, and Celie is the only one who ever takes the time to map the new additions. And, when King and Queen Glower are ambushed and foreign interlopers appear to try to claim the kingdom, Celie's intimate knowledge of the castle will be key to protecting herself, her family, and her people. Celie's unique friendship with the magical castle provides fodder for all sorts of fun adventures in this charming story! You can continue Celie's adventures in Wednesdays in the Tower, Thursdays with the Crown, Fridays with the Wizards, and Saturdays at Sea.
10-year-old Mandy is an orphan who wants a place to call her own more than anything in the world. So when she climbs over the orphanage wall and finds an abandoned cottage, Mandy realizes that she’s found the perfect place. Through the year, Mandy works to make the cottage hers, “borrowing” things she needs from the orphanage. But when Mandy gets sick at the cottage on a stormy night, she’ll learn that there are friends to be found in the most unexpected places! This charming novel by beloved actress Julie Andrews is sure to delight any child who’s dreamed of creating her very own secret space.
In Poppy's world, witches work for good and are treated with respect and honor so when Poppy, whose parents are not witches, develops powers, they are thrilled. Poppy, on the other hand, is not: all she wants to do is become a great baker. Her parents push her into magic despite her protests, and soon Poppy is exploring some dark paths out of frustration and resentment. Fortunately, friendship and good food win out in the end! Poppy is a sympathetic characters and readers will empathize with a tween who expresses her anger in inappropriate ways (and enjoy the included recipes!) Fans of this story can find more stand-alone stories set in Poppy's magical world in our Poppy Pendle Collection.
Emily's literary idol, Garrison Griswold, lives in San Francisco — something that makes her move to the city a lot more exciting! He's the creator of Book Scavenger, a game where books are hidden in cities around the country. But when she arrives, Emily learns that Griswold has been attacked and no one knows anything about the epic new game he was just about to launch. When Emily and her friend James discover a strange book, they find themselves rushing from clue to clue, trying to find the secret — before whoever attacked Griswold comes after them too. This fun adventure, sprinkled with mysteries and ciphers, is sure to appeal to mystery fans. Emily and James' adventures continue in The Unbreakable Code and The Alcatraz Escape.
Opal comes home from her local Winn-Dixie supermarket with something entirely unexpected — a stray dog! Soon she and the dog are best friends, and she’s named him after the place where they met. Winn-Dixie’s goofy, warm attitude become the conversation starter Opal needs to meet a wide variety of unexpected characters in her new town... and even prompts her sad, introverted father to open up about why Opal’s mother left the family. This Newbery Honor book, which was also adapted into a live-action film, is a lovely story of friendship, acceptance, and love.
Five years after her first visit to her grandmother's house in Australia, Livy is back — and feels like there's something important she's forgotten about her last trip. What she forgot was Bob: a small, mysterious being dressed in a chicken suit. She promised to help find his family… and Bob remembers her promise, even if he doesn't remember his way home. Together, Livy and Bob will have to puzzle out the clues to where Bob comes from — and along the way, they'll learn truths about both love and the joys of childhood. Told in alternating chapters in Livy and Bob's perspectives, this irresistible story explores friendship, belonging, and the magic of storytelling.
The Penderwick sisters are spending the summer on a sprawling estate, and as the girls meander through the gardens and nose through the attics, they also meet a fascinating new companion: Jeffrey, the son of the estate’s owner, Mrs. Tifton. Mrs. Tifton doesn't approve of these antics, and Jeffrey's on the verge of being sent to a military school. Will the sisters' adventures save their new friend from such a terrible fate, or just get him deeper into hot water? It will be a summer of full of trouble, laughter, mischief, and confusion — definitely one that no one on the estate will ever forget! Fans of the Penderwicks can find more of their adventures in our Penderwicks Collection.
Tuesday's mother, Serendipity, is a famous author — and now she's missing. So Tuesday and her dog Baxterr set out to find her, and discover the mysterious, unpredictable place that stories come from. In order to rescue her mother — and get to The End — Tuesday will have to make new friends, learn to sail a magical boat, defeat a dangerous pirate, learn the truth about her definitely-not-ordinary dog, and get in touch with her creative side to find the power in storytelling. This magical adventure plays with narrative structure and the creative process to celebrate the power of finding your own voice, and along the way celebrates the loyalty of a loving dog (even if your Mighty Girl's dog isn't quite as unique as Baxterr.) Tuesday and Baxterr return in the sequel, A Week Without Tuesday.
Gladys Gatsby adores gourmet food — something her fast food-loving parents don’t appreciate. So she's been cooking fancy dishes for herself in secret since the age of seven... until she accidentally sets fire to the kitchen and finds herself banned from cooking altogether. But then a major newspaper contacts her, thinking she's an adult foodie, asking her to write a review of one of the best restaurants in New York City! If Gladys wants to get her dream job, she'll have to engage in some clever maneuvering — and draw on the help of both her friends and the snobbiest girl in school. This clever and funny book about a girl with a passion for fine food will delight young readers. Gladys' story continues in The Stars of Summer and Stars So Sweet.
At birth, Ella was given the "gift" of obedience by a foolish fairy; as a result, she cannot refuse any order given to her, no matter what it is — or who gives it to her. Ella's stepmother and stepsisters are more than happy to take advantage of her curse, but Ella is not content to accept her fate. Instead, she sets out to find a way to reverse the curse and spell... and find her own happiness. This Newbery Honor book plays with many aspects of the traditional Cinderella story, but at its heart is an independent, determined heroine who ultimately frees herself. For a companion novel set in the same world, check out Ogre Enchanted.
11-year-old Willodeen loves animals of all kinds — even the strange "screechers" that the rest of the villagers of Perchance consider pests. She believes that all creatures have their part to play... and maybe that explains why Perchance is facing such a terrible year, full of natural disasters and the complete disappearance of the hummingbears that are both a source of local pride and a key element of the village's economy. When her friend, Connor, gives her a birthday gift that kindles an unexpected magic in her, Willodeen realizes that she can solve the mystery of the missing hummingbears... and maybe even speak up for all of the animals she adores, even the screechers. This whimsical and thoughtful story by Katherine Applegate, the Newbery Award winning author of The One And Only Ivan, celebrates the power of individuals to make a difference.
12-year-old Meg has been struggling since her father's death — both because of her own grief and anxiety, and because her mother's spiral into depression means she has to fend for herself. She depends on the school nurse's office as a refuge (and a place to get a snack when there's no food at home.) When she encounters 12-year-old Riley, a Type 1 diabetic who chafes under her overprotective mother's restrictions, it's far from an instant friendship: Riley thinks the freedom Meg has must be wonderful, while Meg doesn't understand why Riley can't see how good it is to have a parent to care for you. But together, with the help of a bag of jelly beans, maybe they'll discover they can lean on one another. This heartfelt novel, which sensitively addresses the challenges facing both girls, is perfect for fans of Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus.
Clarice the mouse and her brother, Charles Sebastian, know that it's critical to be careful... but all the caution in the world didn't save their mother, who was swept into the sea, or their sister, who got caught and eaten by the horrible cat Special Lady. Since then, the siblings have stayed hidden in a pantry crate as much as possible, avoiding the dangers outside. But when some of the sailors on the ship they're riding mutiny, Clarice ends up on a small, leaky boat with Special Lady and one group of sailors, while Charles Sebastian is trapped on the ship with mutineers, a flock of angry chickens, and a human prisoner that's taking a little too much interest in him. To survive — and to find one another again — the siblings will have to learn something new: how to be bold. This thrilling animal adventure is perfect for fans of Pax and A Wolf Called Wander.
11-year-old Rigel loved growing up off the grid in a two-room cabin in Alaska — so when her parents divorce, and her mom moves her and her sisters to a suburb in Connecticut to live with their grandmother, she's devastated. Her one hope is her dad's promise that if she sticks it out for a year, he'll bring her back home. While her siblings settle in quickly, Rigel struggles, especially when she becomes a target for the mean girls at her new school. But then she befriends an injured crow that she finds behind the school, naming it Blueberry. Blueberry provides comfort when her dad's postcards and phone calls start tapering off, and even makes her realize that even wild things can build a life in the suburbs. At times both funny and heartfelt, this is a powerful novel about finding connection and home, wherever you find yourself.
When 13-year-old Nat's family moves from California to New Jersey, it means leaving behind her best friend Chloe and her wheelchair racing team — plus her parents are as overprotective as ever. But when musical-loving Nat discovers there's going to be a kids' production of Wicked, she takes the plunge and auditions — and gets into the ensemble! Her fellow cast members are eager to help her overcome obstacles — both physical ones, like inaccessible venues, and social ones, like stigma and patronizing attitudes. Will they be able to help Nat "Defy Gravity" in every sense of the song? Written by Tony award–winning actress Ali Stroker, the first wheelchair user to be cast in a Broadway play, and playwright Stacy Davidowitz, this is a celebration of musical theater and of one courageous girl determined to fly.
11-year-old Addie is used to being the weird one in her small Scottish town: neither her peers nor the adults in her life really understand her special interests, her sensory issues, and her exhaustion with trying (and sometimes failing) to mask her autistic behaviors and seem "normal." But when she learns that her town hosted witch trials centuries ago, she discovers a cause: creating a memorial for the women who were burned just for being different. With the help of her outspoken sister Keedie, who's also autistic, and a new friend named Audrey, Addie is determined to make her voice heard. Written by an award-winning, neurodivergent author, this is a compelling story about acceptance of differences and being true to yourself perfect for fans of Song for a Whale and Counting by 7s.
When a girl named Beatryce shows up in a goat stall at the monastery of the Order of the Chronicles of Sorrowing, Gentle Brother Edik quickly realizes the danger: thanks to a prophecy he himself wrote, the king is hunting for a girl just like her. After Edik nurses her back to health, it becomes clear that Beatryce is full of stories, both poignant and powerful. In addition to the monk and the goat, she befriends a former king and a local boy. She knows she has to face the king, but when she sets out to do so, it's with the confidence of someone who knows that there are many people who love her — people who will never let her lose her way. This magical adventure by bestselling author Kate DiCamillo, accented with illustrations from Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall, is a stunning story about finding the power of words and friendships.
12-year-old orphan Seren has just received word that her godfather, Captain Arthur Jones, will take her in, so she immediately starts imagining a happy life at his country estate. Instead, things go awry from the moment she sets foot in the train station, where a mysterious stranger gives her a package containing a mechanical crow. Then, she arrives at Plas-y-Fran to discover that Jones and his wife are away and their son, Tomos, has been missing for a year. Rumor has it that he's been taken by fairies... but if Seren could bring him home, maybe the happy family life she's been imagining could come true. With cantankerous Crow by her side, Seren sets of on a difficult and dangerous journey full of mystery and magic! Atmospheric and dark, this novel will delight readers eager for a taste of fantasy adventure.
12-year-old Olia's family has cared for Castle Mila for over 500 years — but while her carpenter parents may be the ones who maintain the physical structure of the castle, it's budding artist Olia who knows its secrets, like how to get into the godlen domes full of magic. But when a violent storm threatens the castle, Olia's grandmother reveals that the magic is trying to break free from the domes... and only Olia can stop it. With the help of Feliks, a foxlike domovoi, Olia will have to venture down a passage that Castle Mila has only just revealed, hunting for the truth about the castle's past that can help her save it. Sophie Anderson, the acclaimed author of The House with Chicken Legs, has crafted a tale of magic and whimsy, seasoned with Slavic folklore, that's perfect for fans of Howl’s Moving Castle.
"I was my family's ears." In 1940s Czechoslovakia, Renee had to be the one to alert her family if she heard Nazi soldiers approaching the door: her 8-year-old sister Herta and both of their parents were deaf. But they couldn't hide forever, and when her parents were taken away, Renee took Herta on the run, hoping to find someplace safe. Instead they were captured and sent to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. As they faced disease, starvation, and the deaths of dozens of people around them — and with Herta only able to communicate through sign language — they had to draw strength from one another in order to survive. Renee Hartman tells this compelling tale of sisterhood and survival in oral history format, capturing the power of love and stories to see you through dark times.
Swallowtail Island off the shores of Lake Eire used to be a happy place for 12-year-old Lark — but this is the first summer she's been there since her mom passed away. Her stepfather and stepbrothers are okay, what will the island be like with Mom gone? Then a family friend, Nadine, hires Lark to help track down information about a 75-year-old boat accident by talking to 93-year-old Dinah Purdy, an African American civil rights lawyer who had a connection to the crash. Dinah becomes a mentor to Lark — both to teach her non-violent protest and to manage her complex emotions — and Lark discovers a knack for tracking down clues. Someone, however, doesn't want the truth uncovered... This atmospheric mystery explores the power of righting past wrongs — and finding a new definition of family.
Olive is sure this will be the best summer ever — she and her friend Willow are heading to camp together! But while Olive makes friends fast, Willow struggles, and latches onto Olive for companionship. It's not long before Olive is fed up and they have a full-on fight. Summer camp was definitely not supposed to be the end of their friendship! Fortunately, a little time apart gives them the chance to find their own way — and their way back together. Tween readers will sympathize with both Olive and Willow during this graphic novel sequel to Click that celebrates how summer adventures can help you discover new strength. Olive's story continues in Act and Clash.
In Josie Shilling's house, there's never enough room, attention, or time for everyone... and she feels like she's the one who always gets left out. That's extra hard when the young gymnast is worrying about whether she's getting too tall for her favorite sport -- and whether her parents can afford the fee. So when her brother brings home a rescued piglet named Hamlet from a nearby farm, Josie delights at feeling a special connection with him. But if there's no room for the kids in the Shilling home, there's definitely no room for Hamlet — and who ever heard of a pig in the city? Josie decides she'll have to find Hamlet a forever home... and along the way, she might find she's not as alone as she thinks.
Rose Howard's Asperger's syndrome manifests in a love of homonyms and anxiety about changes to routine. When her struggling single father brings home a dog, though, it's a change Rose adores, and she quickly chooses the name Rain — which, since it has two homonyms (reign, rein) is one of the most special names of all. But when Rain goes missing in a storm, Rose has to break all of her familiar patterns to find her beloved pet... and when she learns that Rain may already have a home, Rose will face a very difficult decision. This heartfelt novel about justice, courage, and love is sure to touch your Mighty Girl's heart.
12-year-old Max Einstein is a homeless genius with a big heart who knows the truth of Albert Einstein's quote "Imagination is more important than knowledge." She relies on asking herself "What would Einstein do?" when she has a problem — which means that, when she learns about the Change Makers Institute, which is dedicated to solving the world's problems, she's determined to help. With eight other whiz kids from around the world, she's determined to find ways to apply Einstein's theories to help the world... without getting caught up by the greedy Corporation. This exciting novel is packed full of world travel, rollicking STEM adventures, and hilarious hijinks! Fans of this book can find the rest of the series in our Max Einstein collection.
Kiranmala's parents have always told her that she's a real Indian princess, and she's always rolled her eyes... until the morning of her twelfth birthday, when her parents disappear and a rakkhosh demon smashes into the kitchen of her New Jersey home! Then, two handsome princes show up at her door, insisting they are here to rescue her. As Kiran gets whisked away to a dimension of magic, wonder, and creatures she thought were Indian fairy tales, she'll have to learn fast to avoid the Serpent King and the Rakkhoshi Queen, find her parents, and save the world. Full of action, mythology, and magic, this book is a thrilling and fast-paced introduction to Kiran's world; she returns in the rest of the four-part Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond series.
The world of The Secret of Platform 13 is back! The Island of Mist is only accessible through gumps, secret doors that open for nine days every nine years, but now a group of harpies have forced most of the magical inhabitants out. Odge Gribble, a hag, and her friend Prince Ben are determined to find a mistmaker expert to help reclaim the island. Instead, as they hunt through Vienna for help, they run into 9-year-old Lina, an ordinary girl who's up for some derring-do. Now Odge, Ben, and Lina will have to discover the secret of the mist (and some unusual magic) to save the day! Inspired by Eva Ibbotson's classic book, The Secret of Platform 13, Sibéal Pounder expands the world of Platform 13 with this entertaining adventure.
Ana Rosa is a budding writer — but in the authoritarian Dominican Republic controlled by dictator Rafael Trujillo, there is no freedom of expression. She spends her days scribbling on napkins, paper bags, and shop paper, and dreams of having a notebook of her own. The only support her mother feels safe offering is, "there always has to be a first person to do something." Then, the government announces that they will be bulldozing Ana Rosa's village to build hotels, and Ana Rosa's brother is appointed the village's spokesperson. Ana Rosa's poems don't have the power to stop the government's crackdown, but perhaps they can help her process her grief and tell her loved ones' story to the world. This powerful story about oppression, creativity, and the drive to seek justice will get kids thinking about the freedoms they likely take for granted.
After 11-year-old Claire and her older sister Sophie move to Windermere Manor, they discover a secret ladder in the fireplace leads to the magical land of Arden. There, they find a world in constant turmoil: the four magic guilds no longer trust each other after the disappearance of their beloved unicorns, and terrible wraiths freely roam the land. Scared, the girls return home, but when Sophie disappears, Claire will have to push through her fear to return to Arden and bring her sister safely home. A magical world where nothing is ruled by pure good or evil and a protagonist who challenges herself to find her own power make this an exciting introduction to the world of Arden. The sisters' adventures continue in the sequel, Secret in the Stone and concludes with Fire in the Star.
12-year-old Sara Martinez ended up in juvenile detention after she hacked the New York City foster care system to prove her foster parents were breaking the law. She's expecting a grim stretch with no computer access when she gets approached by a mysterious man who calls himself Mother and recruits her for an all-kid spy agency. Before she's even gotten to know her new team, Sara is on her way to Paris where the billionaire sponsor of a youth environmental summit is getting death threats. This thrilling series opener, perfect for fans of Mrs. Smith’s Spy School for Girls, is full of excitement, espionage, and friends becoming family. The City Spies' adventures continue in the sequel, Golden Gate.
12-year-old Heidi knows nothing about her background: her mentally disabled mother is minimally verbal and can't fill her in. Fortunately, a kindly next door neighbor and Heidi's own "good luck" powers have kept them safe. But when her mother adds the word "soof" to her vocabulary, Heidi becomes curious, and when she discovers a camera with an undeveloped roll of film, she becomes determined to figure out where he mother came from — and what "soof" means. This touching coming-of-age story has also been adapted into a live action motion picture. Fans of this book can also check out the companion novel, Soof.
Corinne La Mer isn't afraid of the jumbies — they're just stories made up by parents! Except that one night, she sees a pair of yellow eyes near the forbidden forest. The next day, a beautiful but strange woman named Severine shows up at Corinne's house. She's going to claim the entire island for the jumbies — unless Corinne can stop her. Corinne has courage aplenty and friends to stand by her sides — but how can an ordinary girl save her island against this magical force? Unless, of course, she has magic of her own... An action-packed story and vibrant Caribbean setting will delight middle grade readers. Readers can follow Corinne's adventures in Rise of the Jumbies and The Jumbie God's Revenge.
Amy Anne considers herself shy, but when she learns that her favorite book in the whole world, From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, has been banned from the library, she decides it's time to find her courage! So she recruits her friends to make their point: they start a secret banned books library in her locker, and even make arguments why every single book in library should also be banned to point out the folly of censorship. It turns out that when Amy Anne finds a cause that's important to her, she's ready to take on the world! Middle grade readers will laugh and cheer as they read this stirring defense against censorship.
Every Beaumont knows that when they turn 13, they develop a savvy, a magical power — and with brothers who create electricity and hurricanes, Mibs is hoping for something amazing. But one day before her birthday, Poppa is in a terrible accident, and now all she wants is a savvy that will save him. Confident that her coming savvy will address the situation, she sneaks onto a salesman's bus — followed by her sibling and the preacher's kids — with plans to get to the hospital. But when the bus is going the wrong way, and Mibs' savvy doesn't turn out to be what she expected, she'll have to figure out what to do about the mess she's made. Fans of this volume can follow the adventures of the Beaumont family in Scumble and Switch.
Every night, little lights appear in Sandy's bedroom, and she transforms them into companions to play with until she falls asleep. The next day, she's always captivated trying to draw her nighttime friends. One day, a girl with purple hair arrives at her school, and to Sandy's surprise, Morfie seems to know all about Sandy's lights. But when it turns out that Morfie intends to enter Sandy's night world and take it over, Sandy will have to muster all of her confidence and determination to fight off the invader. Exquisitely illustrated, this thoughtful graphic novel will prompt discussions about creativity, insecurity, and gaining control of your fears. Sandy's story continues in the sequel Hicotea.
Emmie is quiet, artistic, shy, and self-conscious — and feels practically invisible in the halls of her middle school. Katie, on the other hand, is outgoing, athletic, and confident. When the sappy love note Emmie wrote to a crush as a joke is made public by a bully, she's humiliated; but to Emmie's surprise, Katie comes to her defense. Soon Katie is urging Emmie to finally make her voice be heard — and a surprising twist reveals that the two girls have more in common than anyone imagined. This empowering graphic novel carries a powerful message about facing down embarrassment and standing up for yourself. You can find companion graphic novels featuring some of Emmie's friends and classmates in the best-selling Emmie and Friends series; the first two books from the series are collected in the Adventures in Middle School set.
Cricket's grandmother and father are dead, and her beloved mama has run off, leaving her in the "care" of a scheming aunt — so Cricket decides the best way to get her mama to come back is to find the secret room, painted by a mysterious artist, that she always told stories about. With a few handfuls of stolen snacks, she runs off into the Mississippi woods with the only clue she has: an old coin from a nearby ghost town. As she camps out in a tree house and forages for food, Cricket tries to figure out the puzzle, meets some new friends — and starts to come to terms with some hard truths about her family. A survival adventure, an art mystery, and a touching story of searching for home all come together beautifully in this unique tale.
For years, 11-year-old Charlie Reese has collected ways to make wishes, from blowing off an eyelash to eating the pointed tip of a slice of pie last. She wishes for luck, to fit in, and for her mother to get off the couch and care for her so she doesn't have to go live with an aunt and uncle she doesn't even know. But while living with Aunt Bertha and Uncle Gus, Charlie stumbles across a stray dog she names Wishbone and a neighbor boy named Howard, both of whom threaten to break through her tough exterior. And when Wishbone goes missing, Charlie might find that there's a difference between what you wish for and what you actually want. This complex story about the true meaning of family will resonate with readers long after they're done.
11-year-old Ellie is nervous about the first year in middle school — navigating new and old friendships and all the changes of a new school are feeling pretty daunting. And things only get stranger when an odd, cranky boy at her school turns out to be her Grandpa Melvin, who's long dreamed of finding the secret to immortality. Having a grandfather her own age gives Ellie the chance to learn more about his passion for science — but the more she learns, the more she wonders if science can go too far. Maybe Ellie has a few lessons to teach Melvin too. This lighthearted, funny book is sure to be a hit with science-loving kids; Ellie and Melvin return for more adventures in the sequel, The Third Mushroom.
Twins Iris and Lark are identical but not the same: Iris is the sensible, capable counterpart to her brilliant and dreamy sister, and has grown accustomed to protecting Lark after a series of illnesses. But in fifth grade, the twins suddenly find themselves not just in different classrooms, but in different after-school activities too. Suddenly, everything feels wrong — strange things are happening in the city, including items going missing. If the sisters are going to save one another — and everyone else — they may have to realize that being apart isn't the same as growing apart. An eerie mystery, deep symbolism, and a mysterious narrator combine in this powerful story about the struggles of growing up.
Annie uses lists to help her feel more in control — and the shy fifth grader is dealing with a lot right now, including 1. An almost photographic memory that sometimes gets her in trouble; 2. Wanting to overcome her shyness; 3. A move to the small town of Clover Gap, and a brother who's convinced its her fault they moved; 4. A best friend forever (hopefully?); 5. A whole new class full of people she doesn't know; and 6. A difficult start finding her place in her new home. This novel, written entirely in lists, introduces a sympathetic and appealing Mighty Girl who slowly settles in and finds her voice.
Emma has been lonely homeschooling without her brother who is now attending high school, so she's decides to start 5th grade at Lakeview Elementary. The day before she starts, she helps her game warden father rescue a lost bunny trapped in a fence. Emma names the bunny Lapi, after her beloved French Canadian grandfather's stories, and Lapi helps her find common ground with her first friend, a misfit named Jack who speaks out of turn and adores animals. And when Emma wonders if her friendship with Jack could hold her back at school, Lapi will also remind her that staying true to yourself is the most important thing of all. This heartfelt novel encourages young readers to see the value in understanding other peoples' perspectives — especially when they're different.
12-year-old Sophie knows little beyond the four walls of her father's bookshop, where she repairs old books and dreams of escaping the confines of her dull life. But when a strange boy, Peter Nimble, and his talking cat/horse companion show up with a rare and mysterious book, she finds herself pulled into a real-life adventure beyond anything she has ever read! Soon Sophie is on an adventure to find four magical tomes that can help Peter solve a riddle and save the world. This companion to Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes introduces an intriguing Mighty Girl character to Jonathan Auxier's fascinating world of magic and mystery.
Merci is full of confidence and drive, but sixth grade will test even her. As a scholarship student at her Florida private school, she's always felt different from her peers, and this year, her required community service makes Merci the target of the school queen bee's jealousy. Meanwhile, her grandfather Lolo has been acting strangely, from forgetting things to getting angry over nothing, and no one will tell her what's going on. Fortunately, her take-charge personality helps her overcome all the bumps in the road! This Newbery Medal-winning coming-of-age tale stays light, while still tackling tough issues facing many middle-grade kids. Merci's story continues in Merci Suárez Can't Dance and concludes in Merci Suárez Plays It Cool.
When she was a toddler, a tornado swept Lexington Willow up and dropped her in the Nebraska zoo, where Nyah, a kindly elephant, kept her safe. When nobody was able to find her family, Lex ended up staying at the zoo, with Roger, her foster father, and her friend Fisher. But she also maintained a special connection with Nyah, and with the wind that whispers in her ear. Now at 12, a vision from Nyah sends Lex and Fisher into the woods, where they meet a misplaced spirit named Miss Amanda who's hunting for a misplaced treasure. With the help of the elephants and the wind, Lex will step outside the zoo to solve Miss Amanda's mystery — and maybe her own, too. Magical and mysterious, with a bittersweet ending, this engaging story explores destiny, identity, and home.
Last summer, Quinnen was a star pitcher, with her whole family there to cheer her on — including her big sister Haley. But this summer, everything is different: Haley has died, Quinnen's family is still reeling, and baseball seems like the least important thing in the world. But when Quinnen's family is picked to host one of the players for the Bandits, the local minor-league baseball team, it might just be the glimmer of hope the whole family needs — and the push that gets Quinnen back up on the pitcher's mound. Told in chapters that alternate between the previous summer and the current one, this poignant and heartfelt novel explores grief, resiliency, and the difficulty of forgiving yourself.
Orphan Anthea Cross-Thornley desperate for a home when she receives an invitation to safety from a long-lost uncle. To her horror, she discovers that her uncle breeds horses, which have been forbidden from her kingdom after they spread a plague centuries ago. Worse, Anthea finds she can sense the horses' thoughts and feelings, and while her uncle considers The Way a gift, it terrifies her. As Anthea learns more about her family and her country's history, though, she starts to question all the truths she thinks she knows... and when she learns that her mother is alive and threatens everything she holds dear, Anthea will have to choose which path to follow. This thought-provoking fantasy will delight young animal lovers and anyone who has ever felt like an outsider. Anthea's story continues in the second volume, The Queen's Secret and concludes in The Rider's Reign.
11-year-old Yumi would be a terrific stand-up comedian... if she had a stage to perform on, and the courage to do it. Instead, she stands out at school, where kids tease her for smelling like her parents' Korean restaurant, and she's a disappointment compared to her over-achieving, med-school-student sister. Her parents enroll her in hagwon — Korean summer school — in hopes that she'll win a scholarship to private school. Instead, she stumbles across a comedy camp... and accidentally takes the place of a girl who was registered for it. But keeping the deception going is a lot of work, and Yumi realizes she may have to admit what happened... even if it means disappointing literally everyone. This laugh-out-loud story about a girl struggling to find her place in both her culture and her family will delight middle grade readers.
Zima the wolf knows that humans, and especially witches, are dangerous creatures, but when her younger sibling is injured, Baba Yaga may be the only one who can help. It turns out that Baba Yaga needs Zima's keen nose, and in exchange for the healing, she switches bodies with Zima. Now, Zima must pretend to be Baba Yaga — and when her path collides with an orphan girl named Nadya whose close friend is engaged to the intimidating Tsar Aleksander, it starts her on a quest to unite the wolves, witches, and villages against a common enemy that could destroy them all. Full of magic and wonder, and inspired by Russian folk stories, this fantastical tale, which features stylistic black and white artwork sprinkled throughout, is perfect for fans of The Girl Who Drank the Moon and Pax.
For 13-year-old Louisa June's family, the waters off their Virginia home are a refuge, where they can fish for eels or admire local wildlife. But after America joins World War II, the threat of German U-boats constantly hangs overhead. With her older siblings away to help with the war effort — including her sister, who will weld boat hulls — Louisa June has to care for her mother, struggling to overcome her chronic depression with positive moments and hopeful news. But when her beloved brother is killed in a U-boat attack that leaves her father injured and guilt-ridden, Louisa June will need the support of her friend Emmett and her indomitable Cousin Belle to get through her grief... and to find her own way to contribute to the fight against the Nazis. The little-explored aspect of German submarines torpedoing American ships off the East Coast provides a framework for this powerful portrait of life on the home front and the importance of fighting for what matters.
12-year-old Tahlia Wilkins has plans for the start of the summer — including making a splash at the popular kids' pool party. She's also eagerly awaiting signs that she's really growing up, like her first period. But to her dismay, that milestone arrives the day before the party — and right after her mom leaves for a work retreat. She can't bear to talk to her dad about it, so with the help of her best friend Lily, Tahlia sets out on an adventure that includes "borrowing" coins from a fountain to use in a bathroom dispenser, tricking a teen neighbor into using her bathroom in an effort to "rehome" a few tampons, and more. Fortunately, it's not long before Tahlia realizes that her dad is more than willing to help — and that, in his words, "nothing about your body is embarrassing." This laugh-out-loud and all-too-real story about menarche is a modern version of Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret, perfect for young readers waiting for their own first periods.
The town of Stone-in-the-Glen has suffered multiple disasters that destroyed beloved places like the library and park; they put their trust in the charismatic Mayor, who promises he can save the day. When an Ogress arrives one day and settles in at the outskirts of town, the town becomes suspicious of her immediately, but the fifteen children who live in the Orphan House soon realize that she's full of kindness, sending gifts to the people who need them most. When one of the orphans disappears, though, they'll have to find some way to stop the town from targeting the Ogress — and figure out how to make them see the true villain hiding in Stone-in-the-Glen. Kelly Barnhill, the Newbery Medal winning author of The Girl Who Drank the Moon, has crafted a resonant fantasy about what happens when a community loses its connection — and how generosity and love can help them rediscover it.
Duck was rescued from the river as a baby by the Crowns, a group of street urchins who have banded together to protect themselves. Eight years later, she's used to life on the run as a thief... until the Crowns' leader, Gnat, comes up with a cunning plan: Duck will post as an apprentice baker, and while working by Master Griselde, she'll pocket both money and bread for the Crowns. Duck is hesitant to leave the only family she's ever known, but to her surprise she discovers a gift for baking... and that comes with new problems. Is she a Crown or an apprentice baker? Does she owe loyalty to Gnat or Griselde? And who does she want to be. Told in alternating perspectives between Duck and an ancient gargoyle on the roof of the unfinished cathedral, this magical, intriguing story is an exploration of what destiny means — and how to claim it.
Healer and WitchNew!
Healer and WitchNew!
15-year-old Sylvie, like her midwife mother, has a knack for healing... but she's also inherited her grandmother's magical abilities. Although some people in their small medieval French village whisper about the family's witchy tendencies, most are just happy to have such capable care. But her grandmother dies before she can train Sylvie — and Sylvie's attempt to cure her mother's grief accidentally erases all of her memories of both Grandmere and Sylvie. To fix her mistake, Sylvie will have to leave her home and find a teacher. With the farrier's son, Martin, unexpectedly by her side, she sets out on a dangerous journey that will force her to avoid inquisitors, defy the limits society sets on her, and claim her power. Best-selling author Nancy Werlin makes a stunning middle grade debut with this historical fantasy.
When Jennifer Doudna was in 6th grade, she read The Double Helix, James Watson's story of discovering the structure of DNA — and she was hooked. She became determined not just to learn more about DNA, but to learn enough about biochemistry to understand RNA, the related molecule that lets genes express themselves. Her expertise in RNA led to her work helping develop CRISPR, a revolutionary technique to edit genes — one that is already being used to target genetic diseases like Tay-Sachs and sickle cell anemia. And today, her team is part of the global effort to fight the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19. This young reader's edition of The Code Breaker introduces this pioneering scientist and her Nobel Prize-winning work to young readers, who will be inspired to imagine how they too could change the world.
12-year-old Said has won an assistantship with Paiyoon, a master mapmaker — but the low-born girl knows that her upcoming 13th birthday, where she's supposed to receive a golden bracelet with links that show her noble ancestors, could end her hopes of a brighter future. Fortunately, before that day comes, Paiyoon starts an expedition to a fabled continent in the southern seas. The Sunderlands are supposed to be home to dragons and riches, and would give Sai a chance to make her fortune... but as she travels, she begins to wonder what it means to "discover" a place, and what price she's willing to pay for her dreams. This vibrant and thought-provoking Thai-inspired fantasy by the author of the Newbery Honor Book A Wish in the Dark explores identity, destiny, and the power of charting your own path.
Over and OutNew!
Over and OutNew!
The day Sophie was born, the Berlin Wall went up, so all she's known is life in oppressive East Germany, where the Stasi secret police are always watching. She and her friend Katarina dream of escape, and Sophie even imagines she might use her knack for inventing to do it. But the stakes get raised when a Stasi officer asks Sophie to spy on her beloved neighbor... and threatens to institutionalize her disabled mother if Sophie refuses. Just as it seems hopeless, Sophie learns that she still has family on the other side of the Wall — but getting to them requires a dangerous journey across the "death strip" of trip wires, guard dogs, and armed soldiers. In this pulse-pounded novel, the author of I Am Defiance captures the fear of life under the East German regime... and the power of creating your own destiny.
Leni and Sylvia have been BFFS since they were born, since their mothers are best friends too. She really can't imagine not having Sylvia by her side! But when Sylvie has her birthday party right before middle school, Leni is heartbroken to discover that three girls are sleeping over — NOT including Leni. Hurt and confused at being frozen out, Leni decides to investigate her past friendships with the help of Adelaide, the daughter of another of her mother's friends. And the clock is ticking: the class overnight trip is coming up, and Leni's desperate to prove she's best friend material in time to room with Sylvie! In the process, she learns a lot more about what it really means to be a friend — and that sometimes, friendships have to come to an end. The best-selling author of the TBH and Friendship Lists series has created a realistic, relatable story about the changing relationships of middle school, full of heart.
12-year-old Marigold's family are the last known aromages: witches who can perform magic with scents, but who know that each of their charms also alters someone's fate. Her ancestors have long lived on Luna Island in North Carolina — but suddenly things are changing. Her parents are planning to separate, and when Marigold tries to use magic to stop him, she causes an earthquake that hurts her dad, damages the island, and leaves her family ostracized by the neighbors.... and it doesn't even stop her dad from leaving. So she and her two big sisters make a pact that they'll swear off magic for good. When Marigold discovers a 200-year-old curse that threatens her family, though, she faces a choice: does she trust in herself (and her magic,) or risk losing her sisters forever? This magical novel, with its realistic emotions around family and sisterhood, is pure magic.
12-year-old June feels like her anxiety makes her "broken," so this summer she's determined to conquer it and become the lion she dreams of being. She begins by shaving her head and creating a secret library garden at the public library where her mother works; it's all a great start. But for every step she takes forward, it feels like she takes some back, and when her worries rise out of control again, everything feels like it's falling apart. It will take the help of old friends — and an unexpected new one — and a good therapist for June to find a way to turn this summer into the time of new beginnings, just like she planned. The acclaimed author of Tune It Out and Roll with It has created a relatable and real story about one girl's struggle with her anxiety.
Holocaust survivor Eva Mozes Kor tells the shocking true story of her life in the lab of notorious Nazi Dr. Josef Mengele, also known as the Angel of Death. When 10-year-old Eva and her twin sister Miriam arrived at the Auschwitz concentration camp, they were selected for Mengele's lab, where he performed sadistic quasi-medical experiments on dozens of pairs of twins. No matter what happened, Eva knew she had to fight for her survival: if she died, her sister would be killed too. Kor also explores her recovery from the trauma and her remarkable — and freeing — decision to forgive the Nazis. This powerful and compelling memoir shines a light on the worst and best of humanity.
Nobody cares about girls like 12-year-old Marya Lupu — not when it's the boys, like her brother, Luka, who might have the gift to wield magic and protect their country from the dangerous Dread and even more mysterious witches. But when sorcerers come to test Luka for magical gifts, Marya makes a mistake that lands her in Dragomir Academy, a school for "wayward girls." There, they tell her, she can train to serve one of the sorcerers and maybe be worth something someday. But as Marya uncovers holes in what she's told — and discovers secrets about both the sorcerers and the Dread — she starts to ask herself, "Who does the story serve?" The acclaimed author of The Lost Girl has created a meaningful, feminist fantasy that explores oppression, patriarchy, and the power of the truth.
13-year-old Betty Widdershins dreams of leaving the dreary island of Crowstone, where she lives in the care of her grandmother Bunny... even if it means leaving her sisters Fliss and Charlie behind. But when Bunny catches her trying to escape, she reveals a shocking secret: the family is cursed, and if a Widdershins daughter leaves the island, she'll die by the following sunset. She gives them three magical objects to help keep them safe, but when the sisters accidentally trigger the curse while trying to help a mysterious prisoner, Betty finds herself in a race against time to unravel a mystery, break the curse, and save the sisters she adores. A hint of magic and a heap of suspense make this story of secrets and sisterly love feel like a modern classic. The adventures of the Widdershins sisters continue in the rest of the A Pinch of Magic series.
13-year-old Ivy is very determined to be a GOOD kid — and that means putting everyone else's needs first. But when her mom decides to be a gestational surrogate for her friend, Ivy is shocked to discover that she's jealous and concerned about appearances. That's not the right way — the IVY way — to react! And if she's not the kindest kid out there, who is she? So she dives headfirst into proving how selfless she is... but it's hard for Ivy's friends to feel connected to her when she never lets them help her. Ivy will have to learn what it means to be vulnerable before she really understand what it means to be kind. This thoughtful and authentic middle-grade novel conveys an important message about the reciprocy of friendship and what it means to find yourself.
In Tierra del Sol, everyone knows that powerful spirits called criatura occasionally roam the desert — and that 12-year-old Cece's childhood encounter with one left her with a weakened soul. Instead, they idolize Cece's 15-year-old sister Juana, who assists in the rituals that protect the town. But when El Sombrerón, the Bride Stealer, kidnaps Juana in front of Cece's eyes, she's determined to rescue her. To do that, though, she'll have to consort with criatura, something that only dark magicians called brujas do. Cece will have to hide her quest from both her parents and from the brujas she asks to teach her... but with legendary criatura Coyote by her side, she might just succeed, changing how people think of bruja along the way. Based on Aztec myth, this adventure-packed middle grade novel is perfect for fans of The Storm Runner and Aru Shah and the End of Time.
12-year-old orphan and inventor Ellie is responsible for maintaining the intricate and strange mechanisms of her floating City, which protects the last vestiges of humanity in the drowned world. When she finds a boy with no memory trapped in the belly of a dead whale, the City's Holy Inquisition decide that he must be the Vessel of the God Who Drowned the Gods, the Enemy who continually seeks to cause chaos. Ellie doesn't believe Seth is the Vessel, but to prove his innocence, she and her friends Finn and Anna will have to find the true Vessel... without Ellie revealing her own dangerous secret. This nuanced tale of fanaticism, oppression, and adventure, set in a compelling world of gadgets and mystery, is a series opener that will leave young readers eager for more.
11-year-old Cordelia is grieving the apparently loss of her father Prospero, whose ship was lost at sea during an expedition to find new ingredients for the magic her family, the Hatmakers, weave into their hats. Alongside four other families — the Bootmakers, the Watchmakers, the Cloakmakers, and the Glovemakers — the Hatmakers' creations can influence the moods and emotions of their owners. As rumors of war with France rise, the decree goes out to create Peace clothing for King George... but all of them are stolen. There may be a plot against the Makers' Guild — one that could lead to war. With the help of a member of the archrival Bootmakers and a street urchin, Cordelia will have to uncover the truth before it's too late. This sparkling fantasy adventure by Tamzin Merchant celebrates a courageous and resourceful heroine who never gives up. Cordelia's story continues in The Mapmakers.
Seventh grader Kate's life is changing — and she's changing too. Her mom has moved away, and she's starting to feel like she's outgrown her best friend, Haddie. When popular girl Taylor invites her to join a clique, Kate thinks it's the key to a new social circle (and it also means she doesn't have to talk about what's going on with her family, like she does with Haddie.) She even joins in as the clique harasses Haddie... until it results in Haddie falling through the ice of a frozen pond. Kate jumps in, and a video of the rescue goes viral, with people calling her Kate the Great. But Kate knows what really happened; it's only a matter of time until everyone else does too. Is she a bully, a bad friend, a hero, or what? And is it possible that one person can be all of the above? This timely and realistic novel by the author of What Happens Next is a reminder that part of developing identity is staying true to who you want to be.
Reha feels trapped between two worlds: she stands out as the only Indian American student in her 1983 classroom, while at home her parents have high expectations (and only seem to notice her when she doesn't measure up.) Then her mother is diagnosed with leukemia and everything changes. Reha can't stand the sight of blood, but she wants to be a doctor, especially if it will help her Amma get better. But no matter how hard she works to be the perfect daughter, Reha can't stop Amma from dying... and then she has to figure out what comes after. Perfect for fans of Jasmine Warga and Thanhhà Lại, this intimate and deeply moving book explores grief, love, and how your relationships with your parents shift over time.
It's 1993, and 12-year-old Becca is wrestling with severe anxiety — which gets kicked into high gear when her divorced father moves to Vienna for work. Suddenly, her summer with him means a long international flight (will she get blood clots?) and a brand new country (no familiarity to help her avoid panic attacks.) Then she meets Felix, her dad's girlfriend's son, and Sara, their 19-year-old Bosnian au pair — a refugee who escaped the genocide in the former Yugoslavia. Sara's resilience convinces Becca that she might be braver than she thinks, and over the course of one summer, she discovers that the unexpected may be scary, but it can lead to change for the better. This powerful novel by the critically acclaimed author of The Lions of Little Rock is a thoughtful exploration of the many types of courage.
Five years ago, Robber Girl — who can't speak unless spoken to — was abandoned by her mother. She was rescued by Gentleman Jack, who gave her a dagger with a psychic voice in her head, and told her he'll give her a new name and a new home when she helps him claim his gold. But their planned stick-up turns out to be a trap, and Robber Girl finds herself living with a judge and his wife, who lost their two children to smallpox, in a town where a goddess supposedly grants boons. If Robber Girl can overcome her trauma, and the judge's wife can process her grief, they might just discover the goddess works in mysterious ways. This magical realism Western novel is at turns funny and emotionally powerful, exploring memory, identity, and healing.
It's 2061, and 12-year-old Petra Peña is an aspiring storyteller, following in the footsteps of her abuelita — but when a solar flare knocks Halley's Comet off course, directly into the path of the Earth, her scientist parents are selected for a journey to a new planet in hopes of saving the human race. Their whole family boards a ship and are put into stasis for the centuries-long journey. But when she awakes, Petra learns that a cult called The Collective has taken over and purged the memories of humanity's past — by whatever means necessary. Somehow, they missed Petra, and now she has to decide if she can or should share her stories... and whether they are part of what makes us human. This stunning speculative fiction novel from Pura Belpré Honor-winner Donna Barba Higuera is a tribute to the power of storytelling and of the human mind.
Against all odds, Ukrainian sisters Krystia and Maria have survived World War II — Krystia after helping hide Jewish fugitives (and watching her mother be hanged for aiding the resistance), and Maria after escaping forced labor on a German farm. Now, they're in a camp for displaced persons, hoping to make their way to an aunt and uncle in Toronto. But when another girl accuses them of collaborating with the Nazis during the war, they're imprisoned by the Soviet soldiers. Under interrogation and even torture, the sisters draw strength from one another, refusing to sign a false confession and hoping against hope that they can find a way to freedom. Inspired by actual accounts from survivors of Soviet interrogation houses, this gripping historical fiction novel — a sequel to Don't Tell the Nazis and Trapped in Hitler's Web — is a testament to the power of sisterhood and the human spirit.
Princess Madelyn chafes against the restrictions of royal life, while Ranger Will Treaty has fallen into grief and depression after the loss of a friend. Will's former master Halt knows a solution for both problems: Will should train Maddie as an apprentice ranger. Maggie constantly questions her master and wrestles with finding her place if she's not a princess. But when she and Will discover a dangerous plot, Maddie will not only learn to work with her teacher; she'll also learn where she really belongs. Simultaneously an ending to the best-selling Ranger's Apprentice series and the beginning to the Royal Ranger series, this exciting action adventure introduces readers to the first female Ranger in the world of Araluen. To continue Maddie's story, the series continues in The Red Fox Clan, Duel at Araluen, The Missing Prince, and Escape from Falaise.
Little people have some big adventures in Mary Norton's classic series The Borrowers! Pod, Homily, and their daughter Arriety are miniature people who "borrow" what they need from the giant "human beans" who live around them — everything from matchboxes for dressers to postage stamps for artwork. But after Pod is spotted by a human boy, the Borrowers' lives change forever. These charming stories have been favorites for many, and were even adapted into the Studio Ghibli film The Secret World of Arrietty. This beautiful volume collects all of the Borrowers books and stories, perfect for both old and new fans. To check out just the first volume, see The Borrowers.
In 12-year-old Aisulu's Mongolian Kazakh community, roles for girls and boys are still sharply divided, but she chafes at the boundaries. When her brother Serik develops a limp that won't go away, her parents take him to a distant hospital, leaving Aisulu with her aunt and uncle — and secretly caring for an orphaned baby eagle, just like the traditional eagle hunters do. Her aunt says that 'there have been women with eagles since ancient days'; Aisulu isn't sure that her father will agree. But when Serik needs expensive treatment, Aisulu hopes that a win at the Eagle Festival will not only pay for his care, but also prove that she deserves to be an eagle hunter. Lyrical and ultimately hopeful, middle grade readers will soar along with Aisulu as she finds her place in her community.
Shannon and Adrienne have been best friends forever, but things start to change when Adrienne starts hanging out with Jen, the leader of the elementary school's popular clique known as The Group. To be in The Group, you have to do everything Jen says — even if that means bullying others. Shannon will need to decide whether being part of The Group is worth it... and figure out how to stand up for herself if it's not. This graphic novel memoir from beloved author Shannon Hale about navigating the challenges of friendship and discovering what it means to be a real friend will resonate with many young readers. Hale's story continues in the other two books of the trilogy, Best Friends and Friends Forever.
Aru Shah tells fibs to fit in with her jet-setting classmates, but it backfires when several of them show up at the Museum of Ancient Indian Art and Culture and demand she prove her claim that the museum's Lamp of Bharata is cursed. Lighting the lamp releases the Sleeper, an ancient demon who wants to wake the God of Destruction. With her classmates and mother frozen in time, Aru will need to seek legendary heroes from the Mahabharata — and discover unexpected gifts of her own — but will it be enough to save the day? This exciting adventure rooted in Indian mythology is perfect for fans of Rick Riordan. Aru's adventures continue in the rest of this three-part series, Aru Shah and the Song of Death and Aru Shah and the Tree of Wishes.
11-year-old Briony has never been as important as her big sister: beautiful Rosalin was cursed to prick her finger on a spindle on her 16th birthday, while Briony never got a fairy's curse — or blessing — at all. When Briony wakes up a hundred years after the fateful day, in a room with a large spinning wheel, she thinks she knows what's happened... but not everything adds up. Prince Varian, the hero, is acting strangely; the castle is still strangled by thorns and vines, and there's a vaguely scary fairy godmother hanging around. But the only person who will listen to her is Rosalin herself. As the sisters try to untangle the plots around them, they'll realize that nothing is more important than sisterhood... and that destiny isn't all it's cracked up to be. This is the first book in a three-part series that explores the stories of the sisters who didn't make it into the fairy tales.
Twelve-year-old Sophie has never quite fit in, and she's always had to conceal a big secret: she's a Telepath. When she meets a mysterious boy named Fitz, she learns that she literally doesn't belong where she is, because she's actually an elf living in the human world. But while returning to the elf world answers some of her questions, others linger...including where she really came from and why she can't remember her past. This box set collects paperbacks of the first five volumes of the series, Keeper of the Lost Cities, Exile, Everblaze, Neverseen, and Lodestar. For the remaining books in the series, check out Nightfall, Flashback, and Legacy, plus the extra special installment Unlocked which alternates between Sophie and Keefe’s perspectives and includes plenty of fun bonus information!
For years, 12-year-old Drest has trained as a warrior, but has been protected by her father, the Mad Wolf of the North, and her five loving brothers, the mainstay of his early 13th century Scottish warband. But when her father and brothers are captured by invading knights — and scheduled to be executed in five days — Drest comes up with a daring rescue plan: travel to Faintree Castle and trade an injured knight for their freedom. On the dangerous journey, she meets allies and enemies alike, and starts to hear stories about her father and brothers that contradict her image of them as just and moral warriors. Drest will have to race against time through a world she's never navigated alone if she's going to learn the truth about her family and save the day. This fast-paced and riveting adventure story explores the complexity of morality, friendship, and family loyalty. Drest's adventures continue in the sequel, The Hunt for the Mad Wolf's Daughter.
Aventurine the dragon is tired of being treated like she's a helpless fledgling, so she decides to sneak out of her home and prove her mettle with a hunt. It all goes awry, though, when Aventurine is lured by the delicious aroma of a cup of enchanted hot chocolate and gets transformed into a weak, vulnerable 12-year-old girl! The trade off is that she has a new passion — and the chance to learn to make the confection herself. But can Aventurine figure out the human world well enough to reconcile her human and dragon identities...and can a mere chocolate apprentice save the kingdom? It turns out that combining magic, chocolate, and dragons makes a recipe for a delicious story! The adventure continues in The Girl with the Dragon Heart and The Princess Who Flew With Dragons.
Zomorod Yousefzadeh is the new kid — again. Her family's most recent home is California's Newport Beach, where she's going to start fresh; she's even picked a perfect new, and very American, name, Cindy. But in the late 1970s, with Iran making headlines in the U.S. with protests, revolution, and finally the taking of American hostages, even mood rings and puka shell necklaces can't protect Cindy from anti-Iran sentiments that are way too close to home. The first middle grade novel by the author of the best-selling adult memoir Funny in Farsi, this story shows middle grade leaders what it's like to bridge the gap between beloved traditions and new customs.
Pakistani American Amina prefers to stay in the background, hanging out with her friend, Soojin. But with the start of middle school, things are changing fast: Soojin is hanging out with one of the "cool" girls, and is even talking about picking an "American" name, while Amina's uncle believes that her love of music is un-Islamic. Then, Amina's mosque is vandalized, leaving her heartbroken. She's never spoken out before, but when she finds the courage and support she needs to make her voice heard, maybe she can bring her whole community together. This book celebrates the complexity and joys to be found in multicultural communities, as well as the power of one person's voice to change those around her. Amina's story continues in the sequel, Amina's Song.
In 1880s Amsterdam, the five babies who were left at the Little Tulip Orphanage as babies — Lotta, Egg, Fenna, Sem, and Milou — are considered "unadoptable" for their physical differences, but each of them has an unexpected talent, too. Then the sinister Meneer Rotman suddenly shows interest in the kids, setting off Milou's mysterious danger sense. She convinces her friends to make a run for it, hoping to find the family she's convinced she has. The kids use their gifts to keep themselves save, but Rotman is still on the hunt. Will they finally find the home and family they crave? This mysterious and fantastical story with a Gothic flair is a celebration of found families.
Kit Tyler is heartbroken when she has to leave her beloved Barbados to join an aunt and uncle she's never met in 1687 Connecticut. And from the moment she arrives, she is the topic of disapproval and suspicion: in their Puritan community, a girl like Kit who swims and dares to talk back to her elders might get labeled a witch. And when Kit finds a kindred spirit in Hannah Tupper, a Quaker woman known as the Witch of Blackbird Pond, she suddenly finds herself facing witch hysteria and a mob mentality with nothing but a sense of truth and justice. This Newbery Medal-winning novel provides a stirring exploration of witch hysteria in early colonial America and the power of courageous individuals to stand up to mob mentality.
When 12-year-old Lucy Callahan was struck by lightning at age eight, she developed genius math skills and has been homeschooled ever since. Now she's ready to head off to college, but before she does, her grandma insists on a different sort of test: middle school. Her tasks: attend for 1 year, make 1 friend, join 1 activity, and read 1 book (not another math textbook!). In this smart, funny, and heartfelt novel, author Stacy McAnulty cleverly helps readers see the world through Lucy's point of view – both her gift for numbers and her struggles with OCD, which can lead to spiraling digits of pi taking over her brain. This outstanding story is an uplifting celebration of friendship, self acceptance, and, of course, math!
11-year-old Calpurnia is curious why the yellow grasshoppers in her yard are so much bigger than the green grasshoppers. But it's Texas in 1899, and girls are supposed to devote their time to proper activities like needlework, not tromping through the grasses studying bugs. Still, Calpurnia recruits her grandfather, an avid naturalist, to help her figure out the mystery. As the pair grows closer, Calpurnia dreams of becoming a scientist, even as it becomes more obvious how difficult that will be for a girl in her time. This book will give tweens new perspective on the challenges that faced female scientists in the past. Calpurnia's story continues in The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate, while readers age 6 to 9 can check out the early chapter book series Calpurnia Tate, Girl Vet.
Twelve-year-old Alice Alexis Queensmeadow is determined to find her missing father, who always loved her even though she is pale and almost empty of color, out of place in a vibrant world full of magic. When Oliver Newbanks approaches her for help, she's skeptical, especially since he usually teases her about her appearance, but he says he knows where her father is. Together, the pair will travel into the dangerous land of Furthermore — but nothing there is as it seems. Can Alive find her father... and maybe even herself? This lush fantasy is rich and imaginative; fans of this book will want to check out the darker companion, Whichwood.
Catrina's family is moving to Bahia de la Luna, where the coastal air will help Maya's cystic fibrosis symptoms. Cat misses her friends and resents being forced to move, but she loves her sister and is terrified of Maya getting sick. So when their neighbor tells them that Bahia de la Luna is home to ghosts — spirits of ancestors who watch over them — Cat wants nothing to do with them... and is horrified to discover that Maya seems fascinated by the ghosts. As the Day of the Dead approaches, and Cat meets the ghosts face to face, she'll learn more about the Mexican side of her heritage — and learn to set her fears aside, for both Maya's sake and her own. This original graphic novel by best-selling author / illustrator Raina Telgemeier explores family, friendship, and courage.
Only nine orphan children live on Jinny's island, and every year there is a Changing: a boat arrives with a new, young child, and the eldest gets taken away, never to be seen again. This year, the boat brought Ess, and took Deen, Jinny's best friend — leaving her as the new elder. Jinny will fill her role by teaching Ess everything she needs to know to live on the island, but as the next Changing grows closer, Jinny starts wondering if she dares to defy the rules that she's never even questioned before. Haunting and mysterious, this book will raise interesting questions about holding on versus letting go.
Aven has long since gotten tired of questions about what "happened" to her arms, so she creates crazy stories instead of repeating over and over that she was born without them. When her family moves to Arizona to run a theme park called Stagecoach Pass, she steels herself for even more questions. Then she meets Connor, who also feels isolated by disability (in his case, Tourette's Syndrome.) When the newfound friends discover a mystery at Stagecoach Pass, the real adventure can begin! This quirky story starring a delightfully funny main character is a reminder that others' reactions are often more problematic than the disability itself — and that nothing, not even "lack of armage," has to hold you back. Aven's story continues in the sequel, Momentous Events in the Life of a Cactus.
Molly Ayer is a is a Penobscot Indian girl who has been shipped from foster family to foster family; she's tired of adults acting like she's an inconvenience, and she doesn't care who knows it. But when Molly has to help an elderly woman clean out her attic for community service, she's surprised to discover that Vivian actually listens to her. As they work side by side, Vivian tells Molly her own story: the life of an Irish immigrant orphan riding an "orphan train" to the Midwest with hundreds of other children. This young readers' edition of Christina Baker Kline's #1 New York Times bestselling novel Orphan Train celebrates friendship and forgiveness.
Billie Simms may only be 13, but she is already determined to see an end to segregation in her hometown of Anniston, Alabama — even if few people agree with her. When she hears that the Freedom Riders will pass through Anniston, Billie hopes that the town will see the justice in their cause; instead, they show the depths of their racism and prejudice. With the buses about to move on, Billie has to decide what to do: stay safe at home, or join the cause she believes in so passionately. In addition to the presentation of historical events, this novel explores Billie's developing awareness of her own internalized racism, which provides an intriguing starting point for discussion about racial issues of today.
7-year-old Omakayas is Ojibwa; her name means Little Frog, because her first step was a hop. She knows she was adopted as an infant after being the sole survivor of a smallpox epidemic in her family’s village, and she adores her family on the Island of the Golden-Breasted Woodpecker on Lake Superior... but despite being wise for her years, she still struggles with sibling conflict, including a sometimes disdainful older sister and an often pesky younger brother. The rhythms of everyday life are peaceful, but when they are broken by a smallpox epidemic, Omakayas will prove her courage, even in the face of tragedy. Omakayas' story continues in the sequels The Game of Silence and The Porcupine Year.
All seven full-color paperback editions of The Baby-Sitters Club graphic novels are now available in this great box set from Graphix. Kristy, Mary Anne, Claudia, Stacey, and Dawn are The Baby-sitters Club! Whatever comes up — cranky toddlers, huge dogs, scary neighbors, prank calls — you can count on them to save the day. These graphic adaptations by Raina Telgemeier and Gale Galligan are sure to delight both old and new fans of the Baby-Sitters Club.
Ten-year-old Zoe has dreams of piano perfection, and all she needs is lessons and an elegant piano to practice on. But when her father goes to the music store, he comes home with a wheezy organ instead! That's just the latest in a series of frustrations and confusion, including Mom constantly working, Dad's fears of leaving the house, and the odd classmate who follows her home from school so that he can bake with her dad. But when her teacher recognizes Zoe's musical talent and recommends her for the Perfectone Perform-O-Rama organ competition, it's the start of a big realization: life can be perfect, even with quirks, surprises, and a family that's a little off-kilter. Simultaneously funny and wise, kids will love the fast-paced chapters full of Zoe's tongue-in-cheek observations.
When the Berlin Wall went up, it split Gerta's family in two: her father and middle brother, who had gone to West Berlin to look for work, are on one side; Gerta, her mother, and her other brother are on the other, under the Soviet's authoritarian control in East Berlin. Now Gerta is growing up with East German soldiers pointing guns at their own citizens to keep them prisoners in their own city. Then, on her way to school, Gerta spots her father on a viewing platform, performing a strange dance, and receives a mysterious drawing. Her conclusion? Her father wants them to tunnel under the wall and reunite the family. But do they dare the deadly consequences of getting caught in search of freedom? This gripping book encourages kids to consider how fragile freedom can be as it ends with the warning: 'History repeats itself."
Natalie's botanist mother is suffering from depression, so Natalie has to figure out how to fix it. Her solution? Enter an egg drop competition, win the prize money, and use it to take her mother to see the cobalt blue orchids that survive in nearly impossible conditions — the ones her mother wrote about in her book How To Grow A Miracle. She's sure the sight of them will breathe some hope back into her mother's life. With the help of her friends, Twig and Dari, Natalie gets to work... but in the end, she'll learn that sometimes talking is the best way to grow the miracle you need. This book sensitively explores the impact of depression on both an individual and on the people who love them.
12-year-old Cordelia and her father protect the magical creatures of 19th century Boston, from dragons to zuppies (zombie puppies). But when her father and most of the monsters go missing, Cordelia has to set off in search of them. With her new friend Gregory by her side, she travels the monster-unfriendly world — and meets many dangerous people — in her quest to save her father... and realizes that "the monsters people name are not the real danger... it’s the monsters who name themselves that you really have to watch out for." Lauren Oliver's mix of whimsical fantasy and real-life parallels, accented by occasional illustrations from Ethan M. Aldridge, draws young readers into Cordelia's world and invites them to contemplate what makes a monster.
When Abigail's attempt to escape from her terribly boring boarding school fails, she learns her school is more interesting than she thought! The school is actually a cover for an elite spy ring called The Center, and Abigail's mother, The Center's top agent, has gone missing in action. Abigail has to master her spy training fast, because even with the help of a former nemesis and a boy from her grade, she doesn't have much time to solve the mystery and save her mother. And answers may be closer than she thinks... Fast-paced and full of twists and turns, this will be a hit with young would-be spies! For more volumes in the series, check out Power Play and Double Cross — or get all three in the Mrs. Smith's Spy School for Girls Complete Collection.
Delphine may only be eleven, but she's used to caring for her sisters, Vonetta and Fern, since her mother left seven years ago for California. But the summer of 1968 is going to be different: their father is sending all three girls to visit Cecile in Oakland. They're expecting family trips to Disneyland to meet Tinkerbell; instead, Cecile sends them to youth programs at a Black Panther center and tells them to stay out as long as they can while she writes poetry. They may not be getting the maternal experience they expected, but over one crazy summer, they'll learn a lot about their family, their country, and themselves. Fans of this book can continue the sisters' story in P.S. Be Eleven and Gone Crazy In Alabama.
When her aunt uses the orphan girl Creel as bait for a dragon — and therefore a prince — as a way to drag the family out of poverty, Creel befriends the dragons instead! With encouragement from her new friends, and a gift of a mysterious pair of slippers, Creel moves to the city and opens a dress shop, only to find herself drawn into a conflict that could spell the end of both the kingdom and the dragons. With an epic world, exciting action, and vivid description, this book is sure to captivate young readers. Creel (and the dragons’) story also continues in the sequels, Dragon Flight and Dragon Spear.
When their small mining village is deemed to be the location of the future princess, Miri and the other teenaged girls are sent to an academy where they will learn how to be “proper” princesses before the prince comes to choose one of them as his wife. At first, Miri only has to face the strict, condescending academy mistress and the bitter competition among the girls, but when bandits determined to kidnap the future princess find the academy, Miri has to rally the girls to work together and use her newly discovered power to communicate silently to save herself and all her classmates. This multilayered story in a rich historical fantasy world will captivate readers! Miri's story continues in Princess Academy: Palace of Stone and Princess Academy: The Forgotten Sisters.
Gratuity "Tip" Tucci has a tough assignment for school: writing about "The True Meaning of Smekday." For Tip, it brings back memories of her mother being abducted by aliens and the invasion of the Boov, who renamed the Earth "Smekland" after their captain and forcibly relocated all the humans to Florida. But it also reminds her of an unlikely friendship with a rogue Boov mechanic, a hovercar called Slushious, and a cross-country trip to rescue her mother and (hopefully) rescue her planet from yet another invasion. This funny and genre-bending novel which became the inspiration for the animated movie Home is full of newspaper clippings, "photos," and other fun details for you to discover together.
10-year-old Hà has lived her whole life in Saigon, and she loves everything about the city — the bustling markets, its unique traditions, and her very own papaya tree. But when the Vietnam War reaches the capital, Hà and her family are forced to flee. They make their way by boat to a tent city in Guam, then to Florida, and finally, to a new home in Alabama. To Hà, this new land is all wrong: her neighbors are cold, the food is dull, and even the landscape feels alien. Even still, thanks to the strength of her family and help from a teacher with a very unexpected connection to the country where she was born, Hà begins to find her own place in this new world. This National Book Award-winning novel is written in free verse. Fans of this story will enjoy the companion novel, Listen, Slowly.
Terry Pratchett brings his Discworld witches to younger readers with his series about budding witch Tiffany Aching. In The Wee Free Men, nine-year-old would-be witch Tiffany finds herself desperately seeking witch magic to defend her home — and her pesky little brother — from the denizens of Fairyland. It turns out that Tiffany, who's intelligent, determined, and has a talent for cheese, also has a gift for being a witch. Tiffany's story continues in A Hat Full of Sky, Wintersmith, I Shall Wear Midnight, and Terry Pratchett's final Discworld novel, The Shepherd's Crown — in which Tiffany comes into her own as a fully independent witch. With plenty of adventure, humor, and heart, this action-packed and thought-provoking series will bewitch readers young and old alike!
After tragedy strikes their family, Emily and Navin’s mother Karen decides to move the family to their great-grandfather’s house in the little town of Norlen. The locals believe the house is haunted, but the family discounts the rumors — until Karen is kidnapped by a monster! Emily and Navin discover they will have to follow her into another world if they want to reunite their family. Along the way, Emily discovers a stone amulet and learns that she has powers she didn’t know she possessed. This box set collects the first eight volumes of this popular and critically-acclaimed graphic novel series.
Brother and sister Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert decided to take in an orphan boy to help on the family farm; they’re not expecting spirited, flame-haired Anne to show up instead. But Matthew is quickly charmed by Anne’s unique personality and vivid imagination. In fact, it wasn't long before everyone at Green Gables — and in the town of Avonlea — agrees that Anne is something special. It may be that this unexpected but loving girl will be the best thing ever to happen to their family! This beloved book has delighted readers since its publication in 1908 with its creativity, romance, and charm. Fans of Anne can also check out this box set featuring all the Anne novels, as well as the other products in our Anne of Green Gables Collection.
11-year-old Nan Sparrow is a 'climbing boy,' an orphan owned by a chimney sweep to do the dirty, dangerous work of cleaning flues in Victorian London. But, Nan isn't a boy and she's quite possibly the best chimney climber who ever lived, beating the odds again and again... until the day she's trapped in a chimney fire. When she wakes up safe in an attic, she discovers that she was saved by a mysterious creature — a golem — made from ash and coal. Together, the two outcasts will need to evade Nan's abusive boss and figure out how to create a better life in a world that's quick to label differences as monstrous. Told by master storyteller Jonathan Auxier, this powerful and heartwarming tale explores the search for home and family, in whatever form they take.
Eva Nine was raised in an underground sanctuary by the robotic Muthr, but when her home is destroyed, the 12-year-old returns to the surface to search for other humans — who she knows must exist because of a strange piece of cardboard depicting a girl, an adult, a robot, and the letters "WondLa." But not all humans will be friends, and soon Eva finds herself making tough choices on her journey to a place she can call home. This unique story includes Augmented Reality maps so readers can follow Eva's journey in 3D. Fans of Eva can follow the rest of her story in A Hero for WondLa and The Battle for WondLa; the trilogy is also available in a box set.
12-year-old Karana lives a contented life on an island with her Nicoleño people — until the day a brutal attack by Russian and Aleut fur hunters leaves many of the men dead. The remaining Nicoleño decide to leave the island, but at the last minute, her little brother Ramo leaves the ship, and Karana leaps off to join him rather than leave him alone. But before long, Ramo is killed by wild dogs, and it's Karana who finds herself stranded without anyone else to help her. To survive, she must take on traditionally masculine tasks, like hunting and fishing, and also find companions to keep her company through the years of solitude. This Newbery Medal-winning novel, with its indomitable heroine, is a modern classic.
Sixteen people — including one extremely smart 13-year-old girl, Turtle — are offered the opportunity to live in an exclusive condo. Shortly after, they discover that they are also invited to the reading of Sam Westing’s will, where two million dollars rest on finding Westing’s murderer before the other potential heirs! Suspicions, lies, and alliances flurry through the group as Westing gets to play one last game. The fascinating cast of characters and fast pace make this a title that's hard to put down, and its complex, layered mystery story will have readers guessing to the end.
People in town think Meg is a loose cannon, her brother Charles Wallace is dumb, and her father ran off and left their scientist mother — but Meg doesn’t believe a word of any of it. So when an unexpected stranger appears in their kitchen and tells Meg about a tesseract — the “wrinkle in time” which her father was researching for the government — Meg decides to set off through space and time to find him, with Charles Wallace and her next-door neighbor Calvin. It turns out her mission will require all of their strengths to accomplish! A Wrinkle in Time is the first of a quintet of science fiction classics, which are also available in a box set. Fans of the book can also check out the graphic novel adaptation by Hope Larson.
For hundreds of years, a small group of Elders have ruled the Protectorate by terrorizing its citizens with stories of a witch who will destroy the community if a baby is not left in the forest for her once a year. A witch does live in the forest — but she is a kind and gentle witch named Xan, who rescues the abandoned babies. One year, however, she accidentally feeds a rescued baby moonlight instead of starlight. The moonlight fills the child with powerful magic, and for her safety, Xan decides to raise this special child, Luna, as her own. As Luna approaches her 13th birthday, her magic begins to grow in new and unpredictable ways. With her coming of age, Luna will face new challenges to protect the people she loves and bring renewed hope to the lives of those around her. This stunning novel, winner of the 2017 Newbery Medal, has become a modern classic.
It’s Denmark in 1943, and word is leaking out that the Nazis intend to detain the Danish Jews before shipping them to concentration camps. 10-year-old Annemarie doesn’t know why anyone would want to hurt her neighbors, including her best friend, Ellen Rosen, who Annemarie’s family conceals as one of their own. With the efforts of the Danish Resistance — and the entire community — Annemarie looks on as the Jewish population of Denmark, nearly seven thousand people, is seen to safety on Sweden’s shores. This beautiful story of the heroism of ordinary people is sure to be thought-provoking. Younger readers can learn about this inspiring moment of resistance and defiance in The Whispering Town for ages 6 to 9.