Here we round up new and forthcoming children’s titles including a visual poem about hair, a middle grade book inspired by Filipino mythology, a picture book reviving a beloved hungry character, a YA fantasy opener, and many more.
Inheritance by Elizabeth Acevedo, illus. by Andrea Pippins. Quill Tree, $16.99; ISBN 978-0-06-293194-8. Acevedo’s visual poem confronts the cultural specter of hair-related prejudice through the lens of colonial history and Afro-Dominican identity. The book earned a starred review from PW.
Freddie vs. the Family Curse by Tracy Badua. Clarion, $16.99; ISBN 978-0-358-61289-6. In this supernatural adventure infused with Filipino mythology, 12-year-old Freddie inadvertently releases the spirit of his uncle as well as vengeful spirits from a family heirloom, and must break the curse before getting trapped inside the artifact. The book earned a starred review from PW.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar’s First Summer by Eric Carle. World of Eric Carle, $8.99 board book; ISBN 978-0-593-38474-9). The caterpillar and his friends spend their first summer outdoors.
The Marvellers by Dhonielle Clayton, illus. by Khadijah Khatib. Holt, $16.99; ISBN 978-1-250-17494-9. Ella Durand, a Black 11-year-old from New Orleans, is the first Conjuror to enroll at the elite Arcanum Training Institute for Marvelous and Uncanny Endeavors. After a Marvellian criminal breaks free, Ella and friends seek to clear Ella’s reputation—and the reputations of Conjure folk everywhere. The middle grade book earned a starred review from PW.
Little Ellen by Ellen DeGeneres, illus. by Eleanor Michalka. Random House, $18.99; ISBN 978-0-593-37860-1. In this picture book featuring the characters and New Orleans setting of the HBO Max Cartoonito series of the same name, Little Ellen learns to appreciate the most distinct trait about herself, her kindness.
Unequal by Michael E. Dyson and Marc Favreau. Little, Brown, $18.99; ISBN 978-0-7595-5701-7. This nonfiction volume sheds light on the changemakers of America’s history and explores how inequality affects every aspect of society, from housing laws to healthcare. The book earned a starred review from PW.
The Real Riley Mayes by Rachel Elliott. HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, $21.99; ISBN 978-0-0629-9574-2. Newly minted fifth grader Riley Mayes struggles with connecting with her peers but cares deeply for her art and realizes her fixation on a female comic may be something more. The middle grade novel earned a starred review from PW.
Miss Quinces: A Graphic Novel by Kat Fajardo. Graphix, $24.99 ISBN 978-1-338-53559-4. Fifteen-year-old Sue has already sacrificed her summer to take a family trip to visit Honduras, but must also participate in a quinceañera she never wanted. But as she spends more time with her relatives, her trip teaches her a newfound appreciation for both her family and her culture.
Lizzy and the Cloud by Terry Fan and Eric Fan. Simon & Schuster, $18.99; ISBN 978-1-534-48317-0. Lizzy buys a cloud on a string and tends to it carefully, but learns that freedom might be what’s best for her newfound friend.
Uncle John’s City Garden by Bernette G. Ford, illus. by Frank Morrison. Holiday House, $18.99; ISBN 978-0-8234-4786-2. Three Black siblings assist their Uncle John in a city housing development’s garden and spend the summer watching it grow.
The Agathas by Kathleen Glasgow and Liz Lawson (Delacorte, $18.99; ISBN 978-0-593-43111-5). 75,000 copies. After being ousted from the in crowd at Castle Cove High, Alice Ogilvie pulls a disappearing act and reemerges to even more ostracism. When her former best friend does the same but doesn’t return to school the next day, Alice pairs up with her tutor to find out what happened to her, in Agatha Christie fashion.
Confessions of an Alleged Good Girl by Joya Goffney. HarperTeen, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-06-302484-7. “Good girl” Monique is struggling after being dumped by her boyfriend because intercourse is too painful. When it’s suggested that she may have vaginismus, and too afraid to ask her conservative parents for help, she enlists the help of unexpected allies to learn more about her body.
Mr. Lemoncello’s Very First Game by Chris Grabenstein. Random House, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-593-48083-0. In this prequel to the bestselling Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library, Luigi Limoncello gains the opportunity to work for a world-famous showman, who leaves him a mysterious box that will lead to treasures unknown, offering the ultimate riddle for Luigi to unravel.
Marcus Makes It Big by Kevin Hart and Geoff Rodkey, illus. by David Cooper. Crown, $16.99; ISBN 978-0-593-17918-5. In this sequel to Marcus Makes a Movie, after the success of making their first film, Marcus struggles to come up with ideas for his second, and his friends are nowhere to be found. When an invite to a celebrity show arrives, Marcus thinks it’s just what needs to get back on track, but nerves and discord among friends may threaten everything he’s worked for.
Apple Crush by Lucy Knisley (Random House Graphic, $12.99 paper; ISBN 978-1-984-89687-2. In the second installment in the Peapod Farm series, Jen is finally acclimating to life with two new stepsisters, until the new school year brings challenges, including the new dynamic of friendship with boys.
Family of Liars by E. Lockhart. Delacorte, $19.99; ISBN 978-0-593-48585-9. In this highly anticipated prequel to We Were Liars, the arrival of three new guests who come to stay leads to ugly family secrets being revealed. The YA book earned a starred review from PW.
I Kissed Shara Wheeler by Casey McQuiston. Wednesday Books, $19.99; ISBN 978-1-250-24445-1. When the popular Shara Wheeler unexpectedly kisses Chloe and two others at prom then disappears, the trio rally together to find her, breaking the status quo of their student hierarchies. The YA book earned a starred review from PW.
Not So Small by Pat Zietlow Miller, illus. by Paola Escobar. Quill Tree, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-06-284744-7. An array of kids showcase that no one is ever too small to speak up in this invitation to community involvement.
Ballad & Dagger by Daniel José Older (Disney/Rick Riordan Presents, $18.99; ISBN 978-1-368-07082-9). The history of the sunken island of San Madrigal catches up with Mateo Matisse, a descendent of a god, who is tasked with bringing back the lost island. The YA novel earned a starred review from PW.
Growing Pangs by Kathryn Ormsbee and Molly Brooks (Random House, $12.99 paper; ISBN 978-0-593-30131-9). A rising sixth grader learns to navigate the pains of adolescence, including new friendships and increasingly anxious thoughts.
The Blur by Minh Lê, illus. by Dan Santat. Knopf, $18.99; ISBN 978-0-593-37746-8. Exhibiting superhuman abilities of a hero from birth, a child and her family follow the rush of growing up.
The Noh Family by Grace K. Shim. Kokila. $18.99; ISBN 978-0-593-46273-7. A DNA test reveals to Chloe Chang that her deceased father has family in Seoul. But after traveling across the country to meet her estranged family members, she learns why they were kept from her in the first place.
Skandar and the Unicorn Thief by A.F. Steadman (Simon & Schuster, $18.99; ISBN 978-1-665-91273-0. Determined to participate in a prestigious competition requiring a unicorn comrade, Skandar befriends a newly hatched unicorn who harnesses illegal magic and must keep it a secret if he plans to win.
Bravely by Maggie Stiefvater. Disney Press, $19.99; ISBN 978-1-368-07134-5. Princess Merida and her kingdom are threatened by the gods for their dormant ways, and unless the princess can voyage across the nation to convince her family of change, they risk losing everything.
First Morning Sun: A Book of Firsts by Aimee Reid, illus. by Jing Jing Tsong. Beach Lane, $18.99; ISBN 978-1-5344-3884-2. Reid celebrates a baby’s monumental firsts in this picture book.
Big Truck Little Island by Chris Van Dusen. Candlewick, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-536203-93-6. When a semitruck blocks an island’s main means for transportation, four children come together to resolve their island’s big problem. The picture book earned a starred review from PW.
My Own Lightning by Lauren Wolk. Dutton, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-525-55559-9. In this sequel to Newbery Honor book Wolf Hollow, after being struck by lightning, Annabelle becomes attuned to the feelings of animals and learns of the canine cruelty in her community. Meanwhile, a reunion with an old adversary raises ethical issues about personal flaws and forgiveness. The book earned a starred review from PW.
I Won’t Give Up My Rubber Band by Shinsuke Yoshitake. Chronicle, $15.99; ISBN 978-1-79721-492-4. This picture book about a child’s acquisition of a rubber band explores the excitement of childhood agency and small delights.
For more children’s and YA titles on sale throughout the month of May, check out PW’s full On-Sale Calendar.