Whether realistic fiction or epic fantasies, sequels being published this month feature the return of beloved characters and the promise of new adventures.
9 from the Nine Worlds
Riordan follows his Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard series of novels, drawn from Norse mythology, with a collection of standalone stories connected to the nine realms of the World Tree. Each story is told from the perspective of a character from the Mangus Chase novels. While fans of the series may be the primary readers, this collection also offers a sampler of the Nine Worlds universe.
On New Year’s Day, 2013, Cagan made a resolution to write a page a day in the fictional diary of a teen artist. The end result was the novel Piper Perish, in which the titular protagonist aspires to leave Houston to pursue painting. In the sequel, Piper is finally living in New York City, where she works as a modern artist’s assistant. Amid the excitement of the Big Apple, she must navigate both the pressures of the city, artistic struggles, and her own shifting priorities.
Bluecrowne: A Greenglass House Story
In a prequel that unfolds in the world of Greenglass House, Milford returns to the fictional seaport of Nagspeake. The story focuses on the first residents of Greenglass House, including Lucy Bluecrowne, who was introduced in another of Milford’s middle grade novels, The Left-Handed Fate (the name of Lucy’s father’s boat). The new installment promises readers more sea-faring adventure, history, magic, and lore.
The Lady's Guide to Petticoats and Piracy
In The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue, Henry “Monty” Montague, a British Lord expected to curtail his lust for life, travels across Europe with his best friend and crush, Percy, and sister Felicity. Lee’s second historical undertaking is told from Felicity’s perspective, as she embarks on a trip to Germany to become a doctor’s research assistant. A companion with uncertain intentions leads Felicity on her own sweeping escapade.
The Lotterys More or Less
It’s Christmas-time again, and nine-year-old Sumac Lottery, who lives with her two dads, two moms, grandfather, and six siblings, has big plans. Those plans are thwarted, however, by the arrival of a crippling ice storm. Donoghue captures the chaos and warmth of family in this sequel to The Lotterys Plus One, which features Hadilaksono’s expressive black-and-white art.
Louisiana's Way Home
Readers first met orphan Louisiana Elefante in Newbery Medalist DiCamillo’s Raymie Nightingale. In this companion novel narrated by Louisiana, she tells her story of being uprooted by her unstable grandmother (her caretaker), who suggests that “the day of reckoning has arrived.” Louisiana finds herself alone in Georgia after her grandmother abandons her. In a starred review, PW described it as a “bittersweet novel [that] shows a deep understanding of children’s emotions and celebrates their resiliency.”
A Map of Days
Riggs’s fourth novel in the Miss Peregrine series, which began with Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, and was adapted to the screen in 2016, picks up with Jacob Portman and the peculiars now living in Florida. As with the other books (which include a story collection, Tales of the Peculiar), Riggs integrates an assortment of creepily evocative found images; they stand apart from the ones in previous titles, however, by virtue of being in color.
Muse of Nightmares
In Taylor’s sequel to Strange the Dreamer, the author returns to the fantasy realm of Weep, where otherworldly and transformed protagonists, Lazlo and Sarai, are being held hostage by a powerful villain. Taylor introduces new characters into her epic world-building, in a sequel that has been eagerly anticipated by fans.
Levithan’s romantic, metaphysically-minded series that began with Every Day, features protagonist “A,” a genderless being who wakes in a new person’s body each day. The first novel was adapted into a film earlier this year. In the third novel, A discovers that there are other individuals whose consciousness travels between human vessels.
The Perfect Secret
In The Perfect Score, students at Lake View Middle School dealt with test-taking anxiety and the pressures of home life. Now in seventh grade, pressures continue, along with new opportunities. Told in the alternating perspectives of four Lake View students, Buyea conveys their day-to-day worries, aspirations, and shared goal of reuniting two estranged teachers.
Aurora, who worries that she’s “weird,” sometimes feels like she’s living in the shadow of Heidi, a girl who stayed with her parents before Aurora was born, and the protagonist of Weeks’s So B. It. When the family has a stint of bad luck and Heidi (now an adult) comes for a visit, Aurora must deal with strong emotions. .Weeks’s companion novel focuses on a quirky central character, family complexities, and learning that most things in life exist in shades of gray.
The Wizards of Once: Twice Magic
In the sequel to Cowell’s The Wizards of Once, returning protagonists and reluctant allies Xar and Wish once again join forces, this time to battle a powerful and destructive spell. Cowell, author-illustrator of the How to Train Your Dragon books, which have been adapted to the big and small screen, heightens the appeal of this middle grade fantasy with her sketch-like b&w drawings.
Crown of Thunder
In the follow-up to Onyebuchi’s debut, Beasts Made of Night, which was selected along with its author as a 2017 PW Flying Start, protagonists Taj and Aliya have escaped their homeland, ravaged by Queen Karima. But as Taj and Aliya wrestle with their own identities, Karima is in pursuit, and Taj must determine how far he will go to seek vengeance. As Onyebuchi told PW, his writing draws from his knowledge and experience of Nigeria, as well as his interest in social justice.
The Guggenheim Mystery
The late Siobhan Dowd wrote the first of this series, The London Eye Mystery, and was contracted to write the second, but died of cancer before she was able to complete it. As an author’s note explains, Stevens was approached by the Siobhan Dowd Trust in 2015, and was asked to continue writing the series. In this next middle-grade caper, Ted and his sister, Kat, become embroiled in a mystery surrounding a painting stolen from the Guggenheim Museum.
The Infamous Ratsos: Project Fluffy
In the third of the Ratsos early chapter book series, popular kid Chuck Wood (a woodchuck) has a crush on Fluffy Rabbitski. She, however, is only interested in her garden. Chuck solicits help from Louie Ratso, who is giddy to be assisting the coolest kid in school. A premise reminiscent of a 1980s rom-com offers a progressive twist.
In a companion to Levine’s Newbery Honor-winning Ella Enchanted, Levine returns to the fairy tale world of Frell, introducing a new strong-willed heroine, Evie. When Evie turns down a marriage proposal, she falls under a curse that transforms her into an ogre.
The fourth and final book in Reynolds’s Track series, which began with Ghost, focuses on Lu “the Lightning Bolt” (as his mother calls him)—a confident yet vulnerable track athlete who was born albino. Familiar characters from the previous books return in a story about athletics, friendship, and defining one’s own success.
Pattou follows her 2003 novel, East, based on the classic fairy tale, “East of the Sun, West of the Moon,” with a long-awaited sequel. In the first book, Rose fell in love with Charles, a man transformed by a Troll Queen into a white bear. Now, Rose and Charles—released from the queen’s enchantment—have a life together. But that life may be threatened by a savage force bent on world destruction.
Actor-turned-author Segel again teams with Miller for the follow-up to Otherworld (the co-authors previously partnered on the Nightmares! series), which centers around a dangerous virtual game and its real-world impact. Last year, Segel and Miller spoke with PW about their collaboration. In the sequel, protagonists Simon and Kat are again pulled into the machinations of a virtual dimension.