Middle Grade Book Spotlight--Tales From New Places!!!

Our middle grade book spotlight this week is all about Tales of New Places!!!  We are taking a look at books that take place in other places that are not here; they are in other parts of the world or even in places that do not exist in the “real world” but only in “book world”.  That is one of the best things about books--they can go as far as our imaginations let them.  We have a great selection this week of fantasy, mythology, and adventure; a mixture of stand alone titles as well as some firsts in a series.  By the time you are done reading some of these titles, you will be wishing that you could go and visit all of these places!  These books and more can be found by searching the catalog using the search tag #youthnewplaces as well as on Libby and Hoopla.  

The 2021 Summer Reading Program takes place from June 5th-August 11th with a new theme and badge activities every week.  Make sure to watch the Middle Grade Book Spotlight book talk video for this week as it counts towards your badge activities for the week; if you read one of the titles featured or on the tagged list, that counts as another activity as well!!!  Earn the weekly themed badges to get your virtual tickets which can be turned into opportunities to win prizes!  For more information--such as to sign up or to sign in to your account in order to track your books and activities--visit our Summer Reading page and click “LOG IN NOW”. 

Check back next week for a new middle grade book spotlight and if you have any book suggestions, please let us know!!

The Serpent’s Secret by Sayantani DasGupta--Up until her twelfth birthday, Kiranmala considered herself an ordinary sixth-grader in Parsippany, New Jersey, but then her parents disappear and a drooling rakkhosh demon shows up in her kitchen, and soon she is swept into another dimension, full of magic, winged horses, talking birds (very annoying), and cute princes--and somehow Kiranmala needs to sort it all out, find her parents, and basically save the world.

The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani--Beautiful Sophie and ugly Agatha, best friends, are taken by the School Master to the School for Good and Evil, where children are trained to be fairy tale heroes and villains. But when Sophie is sent to the School for evil, and Agatha to princess classes, the shocked girls think it's a mistake and try to switch; but unseen forces work to reveal their true identities.

The Trials of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend--Morrigan was born on Eventide, the unluckiest day of the year, so she is blamed for everything that goes wrong. She is also cursed to die on her eleventh birthday. She has accepted her fate until a strange man named Jupiter whisks her away to the city of Nevermoor. Jupiter tells her that, to find a home in Nevermoor, she must compete in four dangerous trials against hundreds of other children, but to win she must find her own extraordinary talent. But Morrigan is sure she has no such talent.

City Spies by James Ponti--After hacking into the foster care computer system to prove wrongdoing by her foster parents, Sara Martinez is offered a chance to join a group of MI6 spies.

Becoming Naomi León by Pam Muñoz Ryan--When Naomi's unstable mother Skyla resurfaces after a long absence, the fifth-grader along with her younger brother, Owen, and caregiver, (and great-grandmother) Gram are suspicious of Skyla's intentions. Their fears are confirmed when Skyla and her new boyfriend, Clive, attempt to take Naomi with them so they can collect more welfare money and make her babysit Clive's baby. Gram is desperate to keep her family together, so she takes the children to Mexico to locate their biological father, Santiago, with the hope that he will help them in their upcoming custody battle. 

Beyond Me by Ann Donwerth-Chikamatsu--In this novel in verse, eleven-year-old Maya struggles with overcoming her fears after the 2001 earthquake and tsunami devastate her home country of Japan. Maya learns that before she can help others, she must look inside herself for the courage to face her anxiety and take the first step.