Some of the big titles hitting shelves this month include a behind the scenes look at a how a v-p candidate became interested in social justice as a child; a superhero whose power is reaching outside his comic panels; a girl who is forced to go back in time to when her grandmother was in a Japanese internment camp; and more.

Picture Books

Birrarung Wilam: A Story from Aboriginal Australia

Aunty Joy Murphy and Andrew Kelly, illus. by Lisa Kennedy. Candlewick, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-5362-0942-6. Ages 6–9.

Readers can travel along Melbourne’s twisting Yarra River in a celebration of Indigenous culture and Australia’s unique flora and fauna. The book received a starred review from PW.

The Blue House

Phoebe Wahl. Knopf, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-984893-36-9. Ages 4–8.

For as long as he can remember, Leo has lived in the blue house with his father, but when they are forced to move out, they aren’t happy about it. Little by little, they find a way to keep its memory alive in their new home. The book received a starred review from PW.

Every Color of Light

Hiroshi Osada, trans. from the Japanese by David Boyd, illus. by Ryōji Arai. Enchanted Lion, $16.95 (32p) ISBN 978-1-59270-291-6. Ages 4 and up.

In this poetic bedtime story narrated by the elements, readers are invited to hold imaginative space for our oneness with the natural world. The book received a starred review from PW.

Kamala Harris: Rooted in Justice

Nikki Grimes, illus. by Laura Freeman. Atheneum, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-5344-6267-0. Ages 4–8.

Told in verse, this picture book biography of the senator and historic v-p candidate shows young people that the American dream can belong to everyone.

Little Fox

Edward van de Vendel, trans. from the Dutch by David Colmer, illus. by Marije Tolman. Levine Querido, $18.99 (88p) ISBN 978-1-64614-007-7. Ages 4–8.

Little Fox is curious about the world but his father warns him of danger everywhere. When Little Fox takes a tumble, he starts dreaming of things that reflect both the beauty he’s seen and the scary things he’s heard.

The Ocean Calls: A Haenyeo Mermaid Story

Tina Cho, illus. by Jess X. Snow. Kokila, $17.99 (48p) ISBN 978-1-984814-86-9. Ages 5–8.

Dayeon wants to be a haenyeo, a South Korean deep-sea diver, just like Grandma. But when a scary memory of the sea keeps Dayeon clinging to the shore, Grandma’s guidance help Dayeon to appreciate the ocean’s many gifts. The book received a starred review from PW.

Respect: Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul

Carole Boston Weatherford, illus. by Frank Morrison. Atheneum, $18.99 (48p) ISBN 978-1-5344-5228-2. Ages 4–8.

From her fight for civil rights to her induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, this picture book biography tells Franklin’s inspiring story.

Thanks to Frances Perkins: Fighter for Workers’ Rights

Deborah Hopkinson, illus. by Kristy Caldwell. Peachtree, $18.99 (36p) ISBN 978-1-68263-136-2. Ages 6–12.

After Frances Perkins witnessed the Triangle Waist Factory fire in 1911, she was forever changed. Deciding to bring about new laws for better treatment of workers and safer work spaces, she paved the way for the creation of the Social Security program.

A Thousand Glass Flowers: Marietta Barovier and the Invention of the Rosetta Bead

Evan Turk. Atheneum, $17.99 (48p) ISBN 978-1-5344-1034-3. Ages 4–8.

Turk paints a portrait of Marietta Barovier, the groundbreaking Renaissance artisan who helped shape the future of Venetian glassmaking. The book received a starred review from PW.

Middle Grade

Beetle & the Hollowbones

Aliza Layne. Atheneum, $21.99 (256p) ISBN 978-1-5344-4154-5. Ages 8–12.

In the eerie town of ’Allows, some people get to be magical sorceresses, while others have their spirits trapped in the mall for all eternity. Kat, a young goblin, has to save her best friend from the haunted mall and confront the magic she’s been avoiding for far too long. The book received a starred review from PW.


Ash Van Otterloo. Scholastic, $17.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-338-56159-3. Ages 8–12.

In the town of Howler’s Hollow, conjuring magic is strictly off-limits. When Delpha finds her family’s secret book of hexes, she’s itching to use it. But the daughter of a rival witching family wants to steal it, and their quarrel unleashes a dangerous curse.

Everything Sad Is Untrue (A True Story)

Daniel Nayeri. Levine Querido, $17.99 (368p) ISBN 978-1-64614-000-8. Ages 10 and up.

A young refugee named Khosrou, stands in his classroom to tell a story from the moment his family fled Iran to the refugee camps of Italy and further back to the jasmine-scented city of Isfahan. Like Scheherazade in a hostile classroom, the stories bounce between a school bus of kids armed with paper clip missiles and spit balls to the heroines and heroes of Khosrou's family’s past. The book received a starred review from PW. See our q&a with Nayeri.

Fighting Words

Kimberly Brubaker Bradley. Dial, $17.99 (272p) ISBN 978-1-9848-1568-2. Ages 10 and up.

When Della and Suki’s mother goes to prison, they are taken in by their mom’s boyfriend. But after his abusive behavior comes to light, they are forced to run. The book received a starred review from PW. Read our interview with Bradley and our article on authors tackling #MeToo in middle grade fiction.

How to Be a Girl in the World

Caela Carter. Quill Tree, $16.99 (304p) ISBN 978-0-06-267270-4. Ages 8-12.

Lydia hasn’t been comfortable in her own skin since the end of sixth grade when boys started to comment on her looks. Her friends and family think she should be flattered but all she feels is uncomfortable and confused. When her mother buys a new house, Lydia finds a book of spells with powers to keep her safe.


Nnedi Okorafor. Viking, $16.99 (240p) ISBN 978-0-593-11352-3. Ages 10- up.

When Nnamdi’s father, the chief of police, is murdered, Nnamdi vows to avenge him but wonders what a 12-year-old boy can do. That is until the gift of a magical object enables Nnamdi’s superpowers.

Isaiah Dunn Is My Hero

Kelly J. Baptist. Crown, $16.99 (208p) ISBN 978-0-593-12136-8. Ages 8–12.

Adapted from a story that first appeared in Flying Lessons & Other Stories, this coming-of-age tale is about a boy who discovers a love of poetry after finding his late father’s journal. The book received a starred review from PW.

Mister Invincible: Local Hero

Pascal Jousselin, trans. from the French by David Bryon and Ivanka T. Hahnenberger. Magnetic, $15.99 paper (96p) ISBN 978-1-9423-6761-1. Ages 9–12.

Mr. Invincible thwarts bad guys with his amazing superpower to reach outside the comic strip panels that affects both space and time. The book received a starred review from PW.

Paola Santiago and the River of Tears

Tehlor Kay Mejia. Disney/Riordan, $16.99 (368p) ISBN 978-1-368-04917-7. Ages 8–12.

In this story based on the Mexican legend of La Llorona (the Crying Woman), space-obsessed Paola Santiago and her two best friends know to stay away from the river. But when Emma disappears, Paola will have to enter the world of her nightmares. The book received a starred review from PW.

A Place at the Table

Saadia Faruqi and Laura Shovan. Clarion, $16.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-358-11668-4. Ages 10–12.

Meeting in an after-school South Asian cooking class, two girls from different backgrounds form a shaky alliance as they make plans to create the best cross-cultural dish together to win a spot on a local food show. Read our In Conversation with Faruqi and Shovan.

The Summer We Found the Baby

Amy Hest. Candlewick, $16.99 (192p) ISBN 978-0-7636-6007-9. Ages 10 and up.

In this poignant historical novel set in a Long Island seaside town during WWII, Julie Sweet and her sister, Martha, find a baby in a basket one morning on the library steps. The book received a starred review from PW.

Young Adult


Kiku Hughes. First Second, $24.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-2501-9353-7. Ages 12 and up.

Kiku is on vacation in San Francisco when suddenly she finds herself transported to the 1940s Japanese-American internment camp that her late grandmother was forcibly relocated to during World War II.


Darcie Little Badger, illus. by Rovina Cai. Levine Querido, $18.99 (368p) ISBN 978-1-64614-005-3. Ages 12 and up.

Elatsoe lives in an alternate America shaped by the legends of its peoples, those Indigenous and those not. She can raise the ghosts of dead animals, a skill passed down through generations of her Lipan Apache family. When her beloved cousin is murdered, Elatsoe must rely on her wits and friends to protect her family. The book received a starred review from PW.

Kind of a Big Deal

Shannon Hale. Roaring Brook, $18.99 (400p) ISBN 978-1-250-20623-7. Ages 12 and up.

Josie Pie dropped out of high school to pursue her Broadway dreams, but after months of failed auditions, she finds herself nannying in Missoula, Mont. Looking for the ultimate escape, Josie checks out the local bookstore, discovering she can literally fall into the plots of her favorite books.

Lobizona (Wolves of No World #1)

Romina Garber. Wednesday, $18.99 (400p) ISBN 978-1-250-23912-9. Ages 12 and up.

As an undocumented immigrant who is on the run from her father’s Argentine crime-family, Manuela Azul is confined to a small apartment and a small life in Miami. When her grandmother is attacked and her mother is arrested by ICE, Manu is left without a home. The book received a starred review from PW.

A Map to the Sun

Sloane Leong. First Second, $24.99 (368p) ISBN 978-1-25014-668-7. Ages 12 and up.

One summer day, Ren meets Luna at a beachside basketball court and a friendship is born. But when Luna moves back to Oahu, Ren’s messages go unanswered. Years later, Luna returns, hoping to rekindle their friendship.


Jordan Ifueko. Amulet, $18.99 (416p) ISBN 978-1-4197-3982-8. Ages 12 and up.

Raised in isolation by a mysterious, often absent mother known as The Lady, Tarisai is sent to the capital to vie for a spot on the Crown Prince’s Council of 11. But The Lady has other ideas, including a magical wish that Tarisai is compelled to obey: kill the Crown Prince once she gains his trust. Ifueko’s debut novel received a starred review from PW.

Sia Martinez and the Moonlit Beginning of Everything

Raquel Vasquez Gilliland. Simon Pulse, $18.99 (432p) ISBN 978-1-5344-4863-6. Ages 12 and up.

It’s been three years since Sia Martinez’s mother disappeared after ICE raids and an ill-fated walk across the Sonoran. Sia believes that her mom must be dead until one night when a spacecraft crashes in front of Sia’s car carrying her mom, who is very much alive. The book received a starred review from PW.