Here we round up new and forthcoming children’s titles, including a ghostly graphic novel, a fabulist middle grate book, a picture book about delaying bedtime, and a story about the moon.
Joe Quinn’s Poltergeist by David Almond, illus. by Dave McKean. Candlewick, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-5362-0160-4. Opening with an introduction from Almond describing the deaths of his sister when he was seven and his father when he was 15, as well as his childhood interest in the occult, this sophisticated graphic novel is an exploration of life, death, and meaning.
The Color of the Sun by David Almond. Candlewick, $16.99; ISBN 978-1-5362-0785-9. Almond (Skellig) walks the fine line between reality and illusion in this reflective YA novel about a wandering boy.
Just Because by Mac Barnett, illus. by Isabelle Arsenault. Candlewick, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-7636-9680-1. Barnett (The Important Thing About Margaret Wise Brown) offers a comic look at that famous childhood bedtime-delaying tactic, the difficult question.
The Moon Is a Silver Pond by Sara Cassidy, illus. by Jose Bisaillon. Orca, $10.95; ISBN 978-1-4598-1864-4. On a snowy evening, a child’s imagination transforms everyday objects into lunar comparisons. The book earned a starred review from PW.
The Dog Who Lost His Bark by Eoin Colfer, illus. by P.J. Lynch. Candlewick, $16.99; ISBN 978-1-5362-0442-1. In this picture book about friendship and belonging, a mistreated dog and a persistent boy forge a relationship based on kindness and patience.
The Word Pirates by Susan Cooper, illus. by Steven Kellogg. Holiday House/Porter, $18.99; ISBN 978-0-8234-4359-8. Captain Rottingbones and his fellow swashbucklers don’t go after the usual kinds of plunder in this picture book.
Pet by Akwaeke Emezi. Make Me a World, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-525-64707-2. Carnegie Medal nominee Emezi (Freshwater for adults) makes their young adult debut in this story of a transgender, selectively nonverbal girl named Jam, and the monster that finds its way into their universe. The book earned a starred review from PW.
Unpregnant by Jenni Hendriks and Ted Caplan. HarperTeen, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-06-287624-9. The authors’ background in television and film shows, with scene after hilarious scene normalizing the most serious of subjects: how far women must often go to exercise control over their own bodies. The YA novel earned a starred review from PW.
Nuts! by Lou Peacock, illus. by Yasmeen Ismail. Nosy Crow, $15.99; ISBN 978-1-5362-0824-5. Two bushy-tailed squirrels squabble over some food in this spare, exclamation-filled picture book about sharing.
Life: The First Four Billion Years: The Story of Life from the Big Bang to the Evolution of Humans by Martin Jenkins, illus. by Grahame Baker-Smith. Candlewick Studio, $24.99; ISBN 978-1-5362-0420-9. Beginning with the Big Bang, Jenkins chronicles significant events in the formation of the universe as we know it today.
Thunder Trucks by Cheryl Klein and Katy Beebe, illus. by Mike Boldt. Disney-Hyperion, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-368-02460-0. An ordinary evening thunderstorm is transformed into a boisterous collaboration of construction vehicles—“Thunder Trucks”—in this picture book.
The Hundred-Year Barn by Patricia MacLachlan, illus. by Kenard Pak. HarperCollins/Tegen, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-06-268773-9. In meditative prose, Newbery Medalist MacLachlan commemorates the life of a great barn; the picture book earned a starred review from PW.
Remarkables by Lisa Mantchev, illus. by David Litchfield. S&S/Wiseman, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-4814-9717-6. In this enigmatic picture book, a boy snorkeling in the waters off a Coney Island–like amusement park has an unexpected encounter with a mermaid.
Arrivederci, Crocodile: Or See You Later, Alligator by Fred Marcellino, illus. by Eric Puybaret. Atheneum/Dlouhy, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-5344-0401-4. Caldecott Honor author Marcellino (Puss in Boots) had finished the text of this sequel to 1999’s I, Crocodile but died before the illustrations were complete. Puybaret (Suite for Human Nature) was later chosen to complete the work. The sequel opens as the Egyptian crocodile stews in a Paris sewer after escaping from Napoleon, who threatened to eat him.
The Proudest Blue: A Story of Hijab and Family by Ibtihaj Muhammad with S.K. Ali, illus. by Hatem Aly. Little, Brown, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-316-51900-7. It’s the first day of school in this picture book, and Faizah’s older sister Asiya, a sixth grader, has started wearing hijab in a brilliant, proud shade of blue. The book earned a starred review from PW.
Free Lunch by Rex Ogle. Norton Young Readers, $16.95; ISBN 978-1-324-00360-1. With candor and vivid detail, Ogle’s debut, a memoir, captures the experience of chronic poverty in the United States. The middle grade novel earned a starred review from PW.
Between Us and Abuela: A Family Story from the Border by Mitali Perkins, illus. by Sara Palacios. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-374-30373-0. Perkins, a YA author making a powerful picture book debut, and Palacios (How to Code a Sandcastle) have created a story based around La Posada Sin Fronteras (“The Inn Without Borders”), a San Diego–Tijuana border wall tradition that occurs during the nine-day festival of Las Posadas. The picture book earned a starred review from PW.
A Song for a New Day by Sarah Pinsker. Berkley, $16; ISBN 978-1-984802-58-3. This excellent debut novel by Nebula winner Pinsker (after the collection Sooner or Later Everything Falls into the Sea) establishes her as an impressive writer of day-after-tomorrow science fiction.
Mother Goose of Pudding Lane by Chris Raschka, illus. by Vladimir Radunsky. Candlewick, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-7636-7523-3. This collaboration, completed before Radunsky’s death in 2018, suggests that the real Mother Goose was Elizabeth Foster, a young woman from 17th-century Boston who married a widower named Isaac Goose. The picture book earned a starred review from PW.
Prairie Boy: Frank Lloyd Wright Turns the Heartland into a Home by Barb Rosenstock, illus. by Christopher Silas Neal. Calkins Creek, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-62979-440-2. An obsession with shapes serves as a leitmotif as Frank Lloyd Wright (1867–1959) grows to be a master architect.
Astronuts Mission One: The Plant Planet by Jon Scieszka, illus. by Steven Weinberg. Chronicle, $14.99; ISBN 978-1-4521-7119-7. Scieszka (the Frank Einstein series) and Weinberg (Fred & the Lumberjack) begin a middle grade series with this tale of ecological stewardship and teamwork centered on the search for a Goldilocks planet: neither too hot nor too cold, and able to sustain human life. The book earned a starred review from PW.
Malamander by Thomas Taylor, illus. by Tom Booth. Walker US, $16.99; ISBN 978-1-5362-0722-4. In this endearingly strange middle grade adventure set against the backdrop of a seaside resort town during the off-season, two orphans are caught up in a local legend.
Are You Listening? by Tillie Walden. First Second, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-250-20756-2. Running from her home in small-town Texas, 18-year-old Bea meets Lou, who is taking a road trip to escape her grief after losing her mother in this YA graphic novel.
On Snowden Mountain by Jeri Watts. Candlewick, $16.99; ISBN 978-0-7636-9744-0. After 12-year-old Ellen’s father leaves to fight in WWII, her mother falls into her deepest depression yet, forcing Ellen to contact her dreaded aunt Pearl.
A Treason of Thorns by Laura E. Weymouth. HarperTeen, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-06-269690-8. In this moving 19th-century fantasy, a young woman who has long dreamed of becoming a Caretaker to one of five sentient Great Houses, “whose vast magic governs the well-being of England,” must choose between obligation and love. The book earned a starred review from PW.
People Share with People by Lisa Wheeler, illus. by Molly Idle. Atheneum, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-5344-2559-0. In this follow-up to People Don’t Bite People, Wheeler and Idle tackle a topic that encompasses a host of ideas: generosity, cooperation, empathy, individual agency, self-control, and, above all, a sense of shared humanity.
The Starlight Claim by Tim Wynne-Jones. Candlewick, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-5362-0264-9. Twenty-four years after the publication of Wynne-Jones’s The Maestro, which traces 14-year-old Burl’s flight from his abusive father, comes this “intergenerational sequel,” an equally riveting YA survival novel featuring Burl’s teenage son, Nate.
For more children’s and YA titles on sale throughout the month of September, check out PW’s full On-Sale Calendar.