New Kids’ and YA Books: Week of July 5, 2021

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Here we round up new and forthcoming children’s titles including a mystical book about cricket, the story of a tardy principal, a supernatural middle grade graphic novel, a picture book about the perfect treehouse, and more.

Josephine Against the Sea by Shakirah Bourne. Scholastic, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-338-64208-7. Bourne (My Fishy Stepmom) conjures young heroes and a mean game of cricket in this middle grade novel set in Barbados, about hidden Caribbean mysticism.

Principal Tate Is Running Late! by Henry Cole. HarperCollins/Tegen, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-06-302574-5. Cole paints a portrait of an elementary school in distress when Principal Tate, the white hen in charge, runs late one morning.

Paranorthern: And the Chaos Bunny A-Hop-Calypse by Stephanie Cooke, illus. by Mari Costa. Etch, $24.99; ISBN 978-0-358-16899-7. Illustrator Costa’s visuals reinforce a Halloweeny vibe in this supernatural middle grade graphic novel with an inclusive cast. Deeper messages include themes of belonging, close friend and family bonds, and learning to trust oneself.

The Perfect Plan by Leah Gilbert. Bloomsbury, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-5476-0526-2. Inspired by animals’ cozy forest homes, a child called Maya plans to construct a tree fort of her own in this picture book.

Terrific! by Sophie Gilmore. Greenwillow, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-06-302518-9. Five animal friends seek an activity they’ll all enjoy, but it’s a challenge in this story set in a forest. The picture book earned a starred review from PW.

The Kids of Cattywampus Street by Lisa Jahn-Clough, illus. by Natalie Andrewson. Random House/Schwartz, $16.99; ISBN 978-0-593-12756-8. In the vein of Louis Sachar’s Wayside School books, this nonsequential collection of strange and magical adventures devotes a chapter each to a variously inclusive group of 11 children who live on Cattywampus Street.

Rise to the Sun by Leah Johnson. Scholastic Press, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-338-66223-8. Johnson’s (You Should See Me in a Crown) sophomore work sees chronically heartbroken 16-year-old Olivia Brooks fleeing Indiana to Georgia’s Farmland Music and Arts Festival to outrun the painful betrayal of her latest ex-boyfriend. The YA novel earned a starred review from PW.

Summer in the City of Roses by Michelle Ruiz Keil. Soho Teen, $18.99; ISBN 978-1-64129-171-2. Though no wicked stepmothers or Greek gods inhabit the world of this surreal, magical realist tale set in 1990s Portland, Ore., Keil (All of Us with Wings) steeps the narrative in fairy tale and myth.

Bloop by Tara Lazar, illus. by Mike Boldt. HarperCollins, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-06-287160-2. After “too many bloopers,” green extraterrestrial Bloop, who hails from a population of canine-like creatures, is sent to conquer Earth and prove that he’s worthy to be the next emperor of his own planet in this picture book.

Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim. Knopf, $18.99; ISBN 978-0-593-30091-6. Seamlessly intertwining western and East Asian folklore, Lim (the Blood of Stars duology) embroiders a richly imagined landscape in this vibrant, fast-paced duology starter. The YA novel earned a starred review from PW.

Marty by Rachel Noble, illus. by Zoey Abbott. Holiday House, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-8234-4662-9. In this picture book by two previous collaborators (Finn’s Feather), Marty is a short, green humanoid creature with a toothy smile. He’s a Martian, a term he prefers to“alien,” and a fan of “watching, learning, and laughing.”

My School Stinks! by Becky Scharnhorst, illus. by Julia Patton. Philomel, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-593-11652-4. Stuart, a freckled, pale-skinned, redheaded child with glasses, is nervous for his first day of school at Wildwood Elementary—only to face a beastly surprise. The class is made up entirely of unruly animals.

Alley Cat Rally by Ricky Trickartt. Flying Eye, $16.99; ISBN 978-1-83874-030-6. Asta, an orange feline, is deeply insulted when the drag-racing cats in her alley overtake her—one of them even calls her a slowpoke. In response, Asta reengineers the family washing machine into a roadster and signs on for the big cat auto race.

If You, Then Me by Yvonne Woon. HarperCollins/Tegen, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-06-300864-9. In this YA novel, Woon (the Dead Beautiful series) explores real obstacles that women of color face in tech through the programming protagonist’s voice, detailing Silicon Valley as fast-paced, chaotic, and sometimes shallow.

Forever This Summer by Leslie C. Youngblood. Little, Brown, $16.99; ISBN 978-0-7595-5520-4. This middle grade novel set during a summer full of family secrets, friendship, soul food, and life lessons by Youngblood (Love Like Sky) delivers a well-paced look at the importance of family legacy. The book received a starred review from PW.

Not Little by Maya Myers, illus. by Hyewon Yum. Holiday House/Porter, $18.99; ISBN 978-0-8234-4619-3. Making her picture book debut, Myers creates a memorable hero in Dot, a diminutive girl who “may be small” but chafes at being treated like she’s “little.”

For more children’s and YA titles on sale throughout the month of July, check out PW’s full On-Sale Calendar.

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