This is the time of year when “Best Of” lists are everywhere. Although we at Kidsreads.com don’t have a “Best Of” list of our own, we’ve compiled a number of them for you here. See which of your top picks appear on these lists and which titles you feel should've been included but weren't. Perhaps you’ll even find some books to add to your reading list as we head into the new year!
Our February roundup includes RED: A Crayon's Story by Michael Hall, a bright, rollicking picture book featuring a blue crayon in a red wrapper who must come to terms with his true identity; ABC OF FANTASTIC PRINCES by Willy Puchner, which features 26 fantastically outfitted frogs who range from dashing to absurd; and NAPTIME WITH THEO AND BEAU by Jessica Shyba, a photographic journey of a boy and his dog napping and growing up together, based on the internet sensation.
In February’s Cool and New roundup, we have FISH IN A TREE by ONE FOR THE MURPHYS author Lynda Mullaly Hunt, where Ally discovers that she has dyslexia and that there’s a lot more to her than just a label; ECHO by bestselling author Pam Muñoz Ryan, where four seemingly dissimilar stories from around the world are connected by a very special harmonica; and PAPER THINGS by Jennifer Richard Jacobson, a moving story that will make readers look at homelessness in an entirely new way.
In paperback this month, we have SAVING KABUL CORNER by N.H. Senzai, the companion novel to SHOOTING KABUL that follows 12-year-old Ariana when her cousin moves into her house from Afghanistan and changes everything; THE NETHERGRIM by Matthew Jobin, a fantasy in which Edmund and his friend must come together to uncover why children are disappearing from their enchanted town; and DEREK JETER'S ULTIMATE BASEBALL GUIDE 2015, where the sports legend shares cool trivia about all 30 of baseball's Major League teams.
Lost and alone a forbidden forest, Otto meets three mysterious sisters and suddenly finds himself entwined in a puzzling quest involving a prophecy, a promise, and a harmonica. Decades later, Friedrich in Germany, Mike in Pennsylvania, and Ivy in California each, in turn, become interwoven when the very same harmonica lands in their lives. All the children face daunting challenges: rescuing a father, protecting a brother, holding a family together. And ultimately, pulled by the invisible thread of destiny, their suspenseful solo stories converge in an orchestral crescendo.
Peter Stone’s parents and siblings are extroverts --- and the louder they get, the less Peter talks, or even moves. When his family moves, though, Peter finds a tranquil valley where he can, at last, hear himself think. There, he meets Annie Blythe. Annie tells Peter she’s a “wish girl.” But Annie isn’t just any wish girl; she’s a “Make-A-Wish Girl.” And in two weeks she will begin a dangerous treatment to try and stop her cancer from spreading. But the treatment may cause serious damage to her brain. Annie and Peter hatch a plan to escape into the valley, which they begin to think is magical. But the pair soon discovers that the valley --- and life --- may have other plans for them.
When Nic, a slave in the mines outside of Rome, is forced to enter a sealed cavern containing the lost treasures of Julius Caesar, he finds much more than gold and gemstones: He discovers an ancient bulla, an amulet that belonged to the great Caesar and is filled with a magic once reserved for the Gods --- magic some Romans would kill for. In a quest to stop the rebellion, save Rome, and secure his own freedom, Nic must harness the magic within himself and defeat the empire's most powerful and savage leaders.
Ursula is a young she-bear who has come to work as a governess at the Vaughn estate. Although she is eager to instruct her young charge, Teddy, she is also frightened, especially when inexplicable things happen in the huge house after dark. Ursula is sure she has heard footsteps in the hallways at night, and that something is following her during her walks in the Enchanted Forest. Then there is Mr. Bentley, a young bear also employed by Mr. Vaughn, whose superior disposition is enough to drive Ursula to tears...and yet why does he also make her heart race? As Ursula works to unravel the mysteries of the Vaughn manor, she will have to be very, very careful. After all, true love, justice, and a girl with golden locks are at stake. And in the Enchanted Forest, not every fairy tale is destined for a happily ever after.
When Alice Dare finds out that she's being evacuated to Mars to join the youth defence force, she isn't sure what to expect. But it sure wasn't being shot at, chased by invisible aliens, befriending a robot goldfish - and then having to save the galaxy! It is a stellar new adventure sci-fi series, perfect for fans of Percy Jackson and Artemis Fowl.
Jack Callahan is the star of his baseball team and sixth grade is supposed to be his year. That is, until he up and quits. Jack’s best friend can’t understand how he could leave a game that means so much. But Jack’s brother has passed away, and though everyone thinks baseball is just the thing he needs to move on, Jack feels it’s anything but. In comes Cassie Bennett, star softball player, and the only person who seems to think Jack shouldn’t play if he doesn’t want to. As Jack and Cassie’s friendship deepens, their circle expands to include Teddy, a guy who’s been picked on because of his weight.
A California girl born and raised, Mai can't wait to spend her vacation at the beach. Instead, though, she has to travel to Vietnam with her grandmother, who is going back to find out what really happened to her husband during the War. Mai's parents think this trip will be a great opportunity for their daughter to learn more about her culture. But to Mai, those are their roots, not her own. To survive her trip, Mai must find a balance between her two completely different worlds.
When Ari’s mother died four years ago, she had two final wishes: that Ari and her older brother, Gage, would stay together always, and that Ari would go to Carter, the middle school for gifted students. So when nineteen-year-old Gage decides he can no longer live with their bossy guardian, Janna, Ari knows she has to go with him. But it’s been two months, and Gage still hasn’t found them an apartment.
Nothing can save Alex Sennefer's life. That's what all the doctors say, but his mother knows it's not true. She knows that the Lost Spells of the Egyptian Book of the Dead can crack open a door to the afterlife and pull her son back from the brink. But when she uses the spells, five evil ancients--the Death Walkers--are also brought back to life.
Pat has always idolized his older brother, Coop. He's even helped Coop dig a tunnel underneath their neighborhood in the suburbs of Washington, DC. Coop is...different. He doesn't talk on the phone, doesn't use email, and doesn't have friends. So it's no surprise to anyone that after a huge fight with their parents, Coop runs away. When Pat receives a package containing a digital voice recorder and a cryptic message from his brother, he follows the clues to New York City, and discovers that Coop has joined a self-sufficient society living beneath the streets. Now it's up to Pat to find his brother --- and bring him home.
When twelve magical superpowers are unleashed on the world, a Chinese-America teenager named Steven will be thrown into the middle of an epic global chase. He'll have to master strange powers, outrun super-powered mercenaries and unlock the mysterious powers of the Zodiac.
When Tuesday McGillycuddy and her beloved dog, Baxterr, discover that Tuesday’s mother --- the famous author Serendipity Smith --- has gone missing, they set out on a magical adventure. In their quest to find Serendipity, they discover the mysterious and unpredictable place that stories come from. Here, Tuesday befriends the fearless Vivienne Small, learns to sail an enchanted boat, tangles with an evil pirate, and discovers the truth about her remarkable dog. Along the way, she learns what it means to be a writer and how difficult it can sometimes be to get all the way to The End.