Staff Picks by Tag

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Each Tiny Spark Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780451479723
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Kokila - August 6th, 2019

Emilia is a neurodiverse preteen who struggles with concentrating in school. But she has a great team to help her focus: her driven mom, her somewhat controlling abuela, and her best friend, Gus. But when Emilia's dad returns from the Marines, she's not so sure how to communicate with him. He seems so...different. And if that isn't stressful enough, something's going wrong in her neighborhood. Why are all the parents upset that her school is absorbing new students? Why does Clarissa treat Gus differently? Why does it suddenly feel like she lives in two worlds? This is a book about the heart: the heart of community, the heart of family, and the heart of history. You'll be rooting for Emilia from beginning to end.


Review by Halley

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Revenge of the Red Club Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781534435728
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Aladdin - October 22nd, 2019

The Baby-Sitters Club meets The First Rule Of Punk in this fierce novel about sisterhood, friendship, and standing up for what’s right. When the Red Club—an after-school, student-run club for middle school girls to shamelessly ask their weirdest questions about periods and puberty—gets shut down after anonymous complaints of it being too inappropriate, Riley and her friends must investigate the real reasons why their club was taken away. And they just might start a feminist movement along the way.


Review by Claire

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Circus Mirandus Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780147515544
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Puffin Books - August 16th, 2016

Micah knows what all children know, what imagination and their hearts (and exceptional adults like Micah's grandpa) tell them: miracles and magic are real, they exist just out of sight, and if you look at just the right time you can find them.  And Micah is just the sort of person we all want to be. Though he isn't perfect (or even perfectly confident) he is determined, he won't let life give him No for an answer, and he has a couple of people in his life who care enough about him to help in risky-crazy ways.


Review by Adam

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Other Words for Home Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062747808
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Balzer + Bray - May 28th, 2019

I've never seen a story like Jude's depicted in children's literature. At 12 years old, she and her mom leave Syria to live with her uncle in America. But once in America, they quickly understand they won't be treated like they belong. This America that promised an acceptance of people from different countries, is one that calls Jude a terrorist once she starts wearing a hijab. 

But through it all, Jude remains hopeful. From trying to make new friends, to trying out for her school's musical, she starts to learn that making a new home doesn't mean you have to forget the one you came from. This novel in verse is urgently relevant and not to be missed!


Review by Claire

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This Was Our Pact Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9781626720534
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: First Second - June 11th, 2019

Everyone always says that the lanterns they set off during the annual Autumn Equinox Festival eventually turn into stars. This year a group of four boys, and an unwanted tag-along Nathaniel, make a pact to follow the lanterns down the river further than anyone has before. Only Ben and Nathaniel keep their word to "never look back" and together they set off on an enchanting adventure that is both funny and heartwarming. This Was Our Pact is a beautifully illustrated graphic novel for anyone who loves the quiet kind of magic you can typically only find in a Ghibli movie. 


Review by Gabi

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Mac Undercover (Mac B., Kid Spy #1) Cover Image
By Mac Barnett, Mike Lowery (Illustrator)
$12.99
ISBN: 9781338143591
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Orchard Books - September 11th, 2018

Mac Barnett, beloved children's author, has published quite a few cherished books. But before he was a New York Times bestselling author, he was a kid. And when he was a kid, he was a spy. This (true?) story chronicles Mac's early years as an undercover spy for the Queen of England and all the dangerous cool-guy tasks he had to complete to rescue the crown jewels. Perfect for the kid with a big imagination who enjoys a good laugh. Can be read aloud or read alone by a new reader!


Review by Halley

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The Stars Beneath Our Feet Cover Image
$7.99
ISBN: 9781524701277
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Yearling - January 8th, 2019

Lolly's brother died last year. Everything is mostly back to normal, but Lolly still feels a stone in his heart when he thinks about Jermaine. The only time he feels better is when he's building his Legos. One day, he starts building out of his imagination instead of following the instructions--and slowly, his worldview begins to change. Told with a strong and compassionate voice, The Stars Beneath Our Feet is a tender story about grief, family, and coming together as a community.


Review by Halley

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The Poet's Dog Cover Image
$5.99
ISBN: 9780062292643
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - September 4th, 2018

A moving story about life and death and what lives on. The Poet's Dog is Teddy, an Irish Wolfhound, and he is the thread that connects the past and the present. Through him, the love of his former owner, Sylvan, who gave him words, and taught him to save others, lives on. A slim and meditative book about love and caring for others during times of hardship.


Review by Mark B.

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Greenglass House Cover Image
By Kate Milford, Jaime Zollars (Illustrator)
$7.99
ISBN: 9780544540286
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Clarion Books - November 1st, 2016

Twelve-year-old Milo can't wait for Christmas break at his adoptive parents' inn. But when strange guests start arriving one by one, Milo's plans for a relaxing winter break turn upside down. With rumors of a mystery surrounding the very inn in which Milo has spent his childhood, and with each guest acting stranger than the last, Milo sets out to discover the mystery of Greenglass House. Falling into this cozy mystery is the perfect way to spend any blustery, fall day!


Review by Claire

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Tess of the Road Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9781101931288
Availability: On our shelves now at one or more of our stores
Published: Random House Books for Young Readers - February 27th, 2018

A smoothie of Into the Wild and On the Road, blended with Grade A feminism and fantasy. Though the plot moves at a walking pace, Tess's character drives this book forward. As she follows the eponymous road on her indelible journey, she moves away from a past that shackles her and towards a future that welcomes her audacious spirit. And as Tess learns, sometimes you just have to walk it off to progress. 


Review by Niki

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