by Erin Entrada Kelly
2018 Newbery Medal Winner
In one day, four lives weave together in unexpected ways. Told from four intertwining points of view—two boys and two girls—the novel celebrates bravery, being different, and finding your inner bayani (hero). Through luck, smarts, bravery, and a little help from the universe, a rescue is performed, a bully is put in his place, and friendship blooms.
The First Rule of Punk
by Celia C. Perez
A 2018 Pura Belpré Honor Book
There are no shortcuts to surviving your first day at a new school—you can’t fix it with duct tape like you would your Chuck Taylors. On Day One, twelve-year-old Malú (María Luisa, if you want to annoy her) inadvertently upsets Posada Middle School’s queen bee, violates the school’s dress code with her punk rock look, and disappoints her college-professor mom in the process. Her dad, who now lives a thousand miles away, says things will get better as long as she remembers the first rule of punk: be yourself.
The Serpent's Secret (Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond #1)
by Sayantani DasGupta
Mythology, science, and interdimensional travel merge in this imaginative story about one girl’s search for self and the discovery of pride in one’s culture. Kiran has grown up being told that she is an Indian princess and has been raised on stories about creatures of Indian legend and lore—all of which she thinks is her eccentric parents’ way of instilling their culture in her. In reality, they are trying to prepare her: on Kiran’s 12th birthday, a spell protecting her expires, her parents disappear, and Kiran is attacked by a demonic rakkhosh. After meeting a pair of prince brothers, Kiran travels to the realm of her birth, the Kingdom Beyond Seven Oceans and Thirteen Rivers, in an effort to rescue her parents.
by Jason Reynolds
Sunny Lancaster is a home-schooled almost-13-year-old torn between duty to run and passion for dance in the latest compulsively readable installment of Reynolds’ lauded Track series.
On the surface, African-American Sunny appears to have a wealthy, comfortable life that his less-fortunate teammates on the Defenders cannot help but envy. Privilege, however, cannot hide pain, and Sunny feels smothered by guilt over his mother’s death immediately after his birth and crushed beneath the weight of his father’s expectations for him to become the marathon runner that his beloved mother no longer can be.
The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street
by Karina Yan Glaser
The Vanderbeekers have always lived in the brownstone on 141st Street. It's practically another member of the family. So when their reclusive, curmudgeonly landlord decides not to renew their lease, the five siblings have eleven days to do whatever it takes to stay in their beloved home and convince the dreaded Beiderman just how wonderful they are. And all is fair in love and war when it comes to keeping their home.
by Wendy Mass and Rebecca Stead
It’s been five years since Livy and her family have visited Livy’s grandmother in Australia. Now that she’s back, Livy has the feeling she’s forgotten something really, really important about Gran’s house. It turns out she’s right.
Bob, a short, greenish creature dressed in a chicken suit, didn’t forget Livy, or her promise. He’s been waiting five years for her to come back, hiding in a closet like she told him to. He can’t remember who―or what―he is, where he came from, or if he even has a family. But five years ago Livy promised she would help him find his way back home. Now it’s time to keep that promise. Clue by clue, Livy and Bob will unravel the mystery of where Bob comes from, and discover the kind of magic that lasts forever.