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Find more Notable Children's Books
This list was compiled by the Notable Children’s Books Committee of the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC). The committee, comprising librarians from throughout the U.S., selected the titles from the several thousand children’s books published during 2018. Included are books of fiction, information, poetry, and pictures—all of special interest and value to children through age 14. The winners of the 2019 ALSC Newbery, Caldecott, Sibert, Batchelder, Belpré, and Geisel Awards and the Honor Books for those awards are automatically included on the list. Notable Children’s Books that were given 2018 Coretta Scott King Awards, Printz Awards, Sydney Taylor Awards, Asian/Pacific American Awards, and Best Fiction for Young Adult designations are noted below as well.
All-of-a-Kind Family Hanukkah. By Emily Jenkins. Illus. by Paul O. Zelinsky. Random/Schwartz & Wade, $17.99 (9780399554193).
Four-year-old Gertie wants to help her older sisters make the Hanukkah latkes, but she’s just too little. A 2019 Sydney Taylor Gold Medalist.
Alma and How She Got Her Name. By Juana Martinez-Neal. Illus. by the author. Candlewick, $15.99 (9780763693558).
Alma Sofia Esperanza José Pura Candela thinks her name is too long, so her father tells her the story of where it came from. A 2019 Caldecott Honor Book.
Baby Monkey Private Eye. By Brian Selznick and David Serlin. Illus. by Brian Selznick. Scholastic, $16.99 (9781338180619).
Baby Monkey solves a variety of puzzling mysteries in an ingenious early chapter book for preschoolers and emerging independent readers.
A Big Mooncake for Little Star. By Grace Lin. Little, Brown, $17.99 (9780316404488).
Mama bakes a big mooncake, but Little Star can’t wait for it to cool and starts to nibble it away. A 2019 Caldecott Honor Book.
Black Bird Yellow Sun. By Steve Light. Illus. by the author. Candlewick, $7.99 (9780763690670).
Follow Black Bird through the day in this stunning board book.
Blue. By Laura Vaccaro Seeger. Illus. by the author. Roaring Brook/Neal Porter, $17.99 (9781626720664).
A boy and his dog grow older together in this spare and moving paean to love and attachment.
Bowwow Powwow / Bagosenjige-niimi’idim. By Brenda J. Child and Gordon Jourdain. Illus. by Jonathan Thunder. Minnesota Historical Society, $16.95 (9781681340777).
On her way to a powwow, Windy hears stories about powwows past and weaves these tales into a dream.
The Day You Begin. By Jacqueline Woodson. Illus. by Rafael López. Penguin/Nancy Paulsen, $18.99 (9780399246531).
One little girl joins a new class and finds her place as classmates share their unique backgrounds.
Don’t Touch My Hair! By Sharee Miller. Little, Brown, $17.99 (9780316562584).
A spunky heroine uses humor to invite readers to understand boundaries and consent.
Drawn Together. By Minh Lê. Illus. by Dan Santat. Disney/Hyperion, $17.99 (9781484767603).
A boy and his grandfather bridge their cultural and generational divide through their shared love of art. The 2019 Asian/Pacific American Award for Picture Books winner.
Dreamers. By Yuyi Morales. Illus. by the author. Holiday/Neal Porter, $18.99 (9780823440559).
Morales and her young son discover how they fit into their strange new country when they find the public library in this gorgeous, personal picture book. The 2019 Pura Belpré Illustrator Award winner.
The Fox on the Swing. By Evelina Daciūtė. Illus. by Aušra Kiudulaitė. Trans. by the Translation Bureau. Thames & Hudson, $16.95 (9780500651568).
A fox invites Paul, a little boy, to deeply contemplate his feelings in this picture book originally published in Lithuania. The 2019 Mildred L. Batchelder Award winner.
Fox the Tiger. By Corey R. Tabor. Illus. by the author. HarperCollins/Balzer+Bray, $4.99 (9780062398673).
Playful Fox loves tigers so much he turns into one (with the help of some paint) in this comical early reader. The 2019 Theodor Seuss Geisel Award winner.
Good Rosie! By Kate DiCamillo. Illus. by Harry Bliss. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763689797).
Shy pup Rosie’s adventures at the dog park include funny, sweet, and relatable interactions with enormous Maurice and delicate Fifi.
Hello Lighthouse. By Sophie Blackall. Illus. by the author. Little, Brown, $18.99 (9780316362382).
A lighthouse keeper and his new wife raise their family and survive the hardships and joys of life offshore in this lovely, idyllic picture book. The 2019 Caldecott Medal winner.
How Raven Got His Crooked Nose: An Alaskan Dena’ ina Fable. By Barbara J. Atwater and Ethan J. Atwater. Illus. by Mindy Dwyer. Alaska Northwest, $16.99 (9781513260952).
Grandmother imparts the importance of patience as she retells the fable of trickster Raven and his missing nose.
I Walk with Vanessa: A Story about a Simple Act of Kindness. By Kerascoët. Illus. by the authors. Random/Schwartz & Wade, $17.99 (9781524769550).
One girl’s upstanding action inspires her schoolmates to join and support a bullied child in this wordless, important story.
Imagine! By Raúl Colón. Illus. by the author. Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman, $17.99 (9781481462730).
A boy’s imagination comes alive during his visit to the Metropolitan Museum in this wordless tribute to the power of art.
In the Past: From Trilobites to Dinosaurs to Mammoths in More Than 500 Million Years. By David Elliott. Illus. by Matthew Trueman. Candlewick, $17.99 (9780763660734).
Short, pithy poems and dynamic illustrations take the reader through 500 million years of life on Earth.
Islandborn. By Junot Díaz. Illus. by Leo Espinosa. Dial, $17.99 (9780735229860).
Given a school assignment to draw a picture of her homeland, Lola gathers stories of “the Island” from people in her Dominican neighborhood. A 2019 Pura Belpré Illustrator Honor Book.
Jerome by Heart. By Thomas Scotto. Illus. by Oliver Tallec. Enchanted Lion, $16.95 (9781592702503).
Raphael loves Jerome, and in spite of the response from his parents, he is not afraid to say that he knows his best friend by heart. A 2019 Batchelder Honor Book.
Julián Is a Mermaid. By Jessica Love. Illus. by the author. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763690458).
Julián’s chance encounter with three mermaids on a subway inspires him to create his own mermaid costume and reveal his inner self to his understanding abuela. A 2019 Stonewall Book Award winner.
King and Kayla and the Case of the Lost Tooth. By Dori Hillestad Butler. Illus. by Nancy Meyers. Peachtree, $14.95 (9781561458806).
When Kayla’s tooth goes missing from the tooth-fairy pillow, she and her dog, King, investigate the mystery. A 2019 Geisel Honor Book.
Lena’s Shoes Are Nervous: A First-Day-of-School Dilemma. By Keith Calabrese. Illus. by Juana Medina. Simon & Schuster/Atheneum, $17.99 (9781534408944).
Facing kindergarten, Lena must convince her shoes not to be nervous in this fresh look at a familiar experience.
Let the Children March. By Monica Clark-Robinson. Illus. by Frank Morrison. HMH, $17.99 (9780544704527).
A young participant in the Children’s Crusade shows the world—and young readers—how to stand up for one’s beliefs and make change. A 2019 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Book.
Mommy’s Khimar. By Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow. Illus. by Ebony Glenn. Simon & Schuster/Salaam Reads, $17.99 (9781534400597).
A young Muslim girl loves her mom’s khimars and uses all her senses to describes their beauty.
My Beijing: Four Stories of Everyday Wonder. By Nie Jun. Illus. by the author. Tr. by Edward Gauvin. Lerner/Graphic Universe, $30.65 (9781512445909).
Yu’er and her grandfather are amiable guides to their Beijing neighborhood, and Jun’s lush watercolor artwork gives this graphic novel even more charm. A 2019 Batchelder Honor Book.
Night Job. By Karen Hesse. Illus. by G. Brian Karas. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763662387).
A boy spends the night cleaning the school with his father. This is a tender and joyful look at work and time spent together.
A Parade of Elephants. By Kevin Henkes. Illus. by the author. Greenwillow, $18.99 (9780062668271).
Five elephants march in a line, up and down, under and over, and round and round, introducing simple concepts to very young children in this perfectly delightful confection.
The Party and Other Stories. By Sergio Ruzzier. Illus. by the author. Chronicle, $14.99 (9781452152882).
Fox and Chick manage to be good friends despite their differences in this uncluttered, laugh-out-loud early reader. A 2019 Geisel Honor Book.
The Patchwork Bike. By Maxine Beneba Clarke. Illus. by Van Thanh Rudd. Candlewick, $15.99 (9781536200317).
Against a backdrop of dynamic, action-filled paintings, a young girl describes, with tremendous pride, the bike that her brothers made from scrap material and the adventures they have.
The Rough Patch. By Brian Lies. Illus. by the author. Greenwillow, $17.99 (9780062671271).
The state of Fox’s garden mirrors his grieving process as he mourns his best friend. A 2019 Caldecott Honor Book.
Saturday Is Swimming Day. By Hyewon Yum. Illus. by the author. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763691172).
Yum delicately explores the fear and triumph a little girl feels when facing her Saturday swimming lessons.
See Pip Flap. By David Milgrim. Illus. by the author. Simon & Schuster/Simon Spotlight, $17.99 (9781534416369).
On pages with spare language and bold, cheerful artwork, Otto the robot tries to help Pip the mouse learn to fly. A 2019 Geisel Honor Book.
Thank You, Omu! By Oge Mora. Illus. by the author. Little, Brown, $18.99 (9780316431248).
When Omu makes a delicious-smelling dinner, neighbors stop by to sample soup until the pot is empty. A 2019 Caldecott Honor Book and a 2019 Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Award winner.
The Wall in the Middle of the Book. By Jon Agee. Illus. by the author. Dial, $17.99 (9780525555452).
A small knight assures the reader that the wall in the center of the book protects his side from the dangerous other side, but the pictures tell a different story.
You and Me. By Rebecca Kai Dotlich. Illus. by Susan Reagan. Creative Editions, $8.99 (9781568463216).
An older sibling brags about their own independence because the new baby has grabbed all of Grandma’s attention in this warm, realistic board book.
All That Trash: The Story of the 1987 Garbage Barge and Our Problem with Stuff. By Meghan McCarthy. Illus. by the author. Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman, $17.99 (9781481477529).
In 1987, a garbage barge spends five months adrift in the Atlantic, unsuccessfully attempting to find a place to dump its contents.
Ana Maria Reyes Does NOT Live in a Castle. By Hilda Eunice Burgos. Lee & Low/Tu, $18.95 (9781620143629).
Ana Maria Reyes tries to win a scholarship to a prestigious New York academy only to find herself facing obstacles. In the process, she discovers herself and the importance of family.
Aru Shah and the End of Time. By Roshani Chokshi. Disney/Hyperion, $16.99 (9781368012355).
In this story inspired by the ancient Indian epic The Mahabharata, Aru Shah discovers she must enter the Kingdom of Death to save the world.
The Assassination of Brangwain Spurge. By M. T. Anderson and Eugene Yelchin. Illus. by Eugene Yelchin. Candlewick, $24.99 (9780763698225).
A diplomatic meeting of the Elves and the Goblins is more treacherous than expected in this brilliantly illustrated novel.
Beavers. By Rachel Poliquin. Illus. by Nicholas John Frith. HMH, $18.99 (9780544949874).
Wit and fact intertwine in an enjoyable guide to the frequently overlooked beaver.
Between the Lines: How Ernie Barnes Went from the Football Field to the Art Gallery. By Sandra Neil Wallace. Illus. by Bryan Collier. Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman, $17.99 (9781481443876).
Growing up, Ernie Barnes had two passions: art and football. Detailed, lively paintings help reveal how, with years of practice, he excelled in both fields.
The Book of Boy. By Catherine Gilbert Murdock. Greenwillow, $16.99 (9780062686206).
In 1350, Boy, an orphaned servant, is hired to accompany a pilgrim seeking the seven relics of St. Peter. A 2019 Newbery Honor Book.
The Brilliant Deep: Rebuilding the World’s Coral Reefs. By Kate Messner. Illus. by Matthew Forsythe. Chronicle, $17.99 (9781452133508).
Ken Nedimyer’s single-minded passion for restoring the ocean’s coral reefs is reflected through riveting illustrations and accessible narrative.
Camp Panda: Helping Cubs Return to the Wild. By Catherine Thimmesh. HMH, $17.99 (9780544818910).
What does a panda suit have to do with species conservation? As this comprehensive book about a panda rehabilitation program in China reveals, quite a lot. A 2019 Sibert Honor Book.
Can I Touch Your Hair? Poems of Race, Mistakes, and Friendship. By Irene Latham and Charles Waters. Illus. by Sean Qualls and Selina Alko. Carolrhoda, $17.99 (9781512404425).
A school writing assignment is the catalyst for conversations around race, class, and privilege in this illustrated, poetic conversation between two fifth-graders who learn to honor each others’ differences.
Dragons in a Bag. By Zetta Elliott. Illus. by Geneva B. Random, $16.99 (9781524770457).
When nine-year-old Jaxon is left in the care of an eccentric old witch, he begins training as her new apprentice by leaving Brooklyn to return three dragons to a magical world.
Edison: The Mystery of the Missing Mouse Treasure. By Torben Kuhlmann. Illus. by the author. Tr. by David Henry Wilson. North-South, $19.95 (9780735843226).
Naturalistic illustrations enhance this story of an intrepid mouse, who builds a submersible and makes a surprising deep-sea discovery. A 2019 Batchelder Honor Book.
The Eye That Never Sleeps: How Detective Pinkerton Saved President Lincoln. By Marissa Moss. Illus. by Jeremy Holmes. Abrams, $17.99 (9781419730641).
Modern illustrations and lively text combine to relate the early history of the Pinkerton Detective Agency and how it thwarted an attempt to assassinate President Abraham Lincoln.
Finding Langston. By Lesa Cline-Ransome. Holiday, $16.99 (9780823439607).
After his mother’s death, lonely Langston and his emotionally distant father migrate from rural Alabama to Chicago, where he finds solace in the poetry of his namesake. A 2019 Coretta Scott King Author Honor Book.
Front Desk. By Kelly Yang. Scholastic/Arthur A. Levine, $16.99 (9781984846099).
Mia not only helps manage the front desk of the motel where her immigrant Chinese parents work; she also helps keep secrets about the guests, whose immigration status puts everyone at risk. The 2019 Asian/Pacific American Award for Children’s Literature winner.
Game Changers: The Story of Venus and Serena Williams. By Lesa Cline-Ransome. Illus. by James Ransome. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (9781481476843).
This engaging picture-book biography of tennis’ greatest superstars focuses attention on the ways they changed the game by their attitude, power as athletes, personal strength, and relationship with each other.
Hammering for Freedom. By Rita Lorraine Hubbard. Illus. by John Holyfield. Lee & Low, $17.95 (9781600609695).
In informative paragraphs and expressive paintings, this picture book tells the story of an enslaved blacksmith who steadfastly worked to buy freedom for himself and his family.
Knights vs. Dinosaurs. By Matt Phelan. Illus. by the author. Greenwillow, $16.99 (9780062686237).
Merlin sets a new challenge for the Knights of the Round Table when he sends them back in time to battle dinosaurs.
Louisiana’s Way Home. By Kate DiCamillo. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763694630).
Louisiana finds her own inner strength when her granny abandons her in a run-down motel while they attempt to lift a curse that has plagued their family for generations.
Marcus Vega Doesn’t Speak Spanish. By Pablo Cartaya. Viking, $16.99 (9781101997260).
After Marcus is suspended from school for fighting, his frustrated mother takes him and his brother to Puerto Rico for a week to reconnect with family he didn’t know existed.
Martin Rising: Requiem for a King. By Andrea Davis Pinkney. Illus. by Brian Pinkney. Scholastic, $19.99 (9780545702539).
Dr. King’s final months of life and the emotional aftermath of his assassination are recounted in this collection of poignant poetry.
Memphis, Martin and the Mountaintop: The Sanitation Strike of 1968. By Alice Faye Duncan. Illus. by R. Gregory Christie. Boyds Mills/Calkins Creek, $17.95 (9781629797182).
Nine-year-old Lorraine, whose daddy is a sanitation worker, recounts the two-month sanitation strike led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. A 2019 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Book.
Merci Suárez Changes Gears. By Meg Medina. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763690496).
Eleven-year-old Cuban American Merci Suárez balances the demands of her multigenerational family with the challenges of being a scholarship student at a private school in Florida. The 2019 Newbery Medal winner.
No Small Potatoes: Junius G. Groves and His Kingdom in Kansas. By Tonya Bolden. Illus. by Don Tate. Knopf, $17.99 (9780385752763).
Junius G. Groves went from being enslaved in Kentucky to owning 500 acres in Kansas and making his fortune by growing potatoes.
Otis and Will Discover the Deep: The Record-Setting Dive of the Bathysphere. By Barb Rosenstock. Illus. by Katherine Roy. Little, Brown, $18.99 (9780316393829).
Daring aquanauts Otis Barton and Will Beebe designed and dove in a leaky bathysphere that allowed them to explore 800 feet below the ocean surface.
Pass Go and Collect $200: The Real Story of How Monopoly Was Invented. By Tanya Lee Stone. Illus. by Steve Salerno. Holt/Christy Ottaviano, $18.99 (9781627791687).
This picture-book history offers a spirited account of the evolution of the popular board game and the people who were involved over the years in its creation.
The Parker Inheritance. By Varian Johnson. Scholastic/Arthur A. Levine, $16.99 (9780545946179).
Issues of race, bullying, and identity are interwoven in this buried-treasure mystery that spans multiple decades as tween Candice unravels a series of puzzles in her community. A 2019 Coretta Scott King Author Honor Book.
Saving Winslow. By Sharon Creech. Harper, $16.99 (9780062570703).
Through vignettes of sparse text, this story follows 10-year-old Louie as he takes on the challenge of saving a fragile, newborn mini-donkey that has been rejected by its mother.
The Season of Styx Malone. By Kekla Magoon. Random/Wendy Lamb, $16.99 (9781524715953).
Despite their father’s attempts to keep them safe in small-town Indiana, brothers Caleb and Bobby Gene go on a wild adventure with new neighbor Styx Malone as they attempt the fabled “Escalator Trade.” A 2019 Coretta Scott King Author Honor Book.
So Tall Within: Sojourner Truth’s Long Walk to Freedom. By Gary D. Schmidt. Illus. by Daniel Minter. Roaring Brook, $18.99 (9781626728721).
This poetic and haunting picture-book biography reflects the larger-than-life experiences of abolitionist Sojourner Truth.
Stella Díaz Has Something to Say. By Angela Dominguez. Roaring Brook, $16.99 (9781626728585).
In this timely book about immigration, citizenship, and identity, third-grader Stella grapples with a fear of public speaking, a complicated family dynamic, and her place between cultures.
Tiger vs. Nightmare. By Emily Tetri. First Second, $17.99 (9781626725355).
Tiger relies on her friend, Monster, to keep her nightmares at bay each night, until one nightmare slips through, causing Tiger to rethink the arrangement. A 2019 Geisel Honor Book.
Thirty Minutes Over Oregon: A Japanese Pilot’s World War II Story. By Marc Tyler Nobleman. Illus. by Melissa Iwai. HMH, $17.99 (9780544430761).
This is the little-known story of a Japanese WWII pilot who unsuccessfully attempted to bomb the Oregon coast, and years later reconciled with Oregonians he had targeted.
The Truth as Told by Mason Buttle. By Leslie Connor. HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen, $16.99 (9780062491435).
In this poignant and powerful mystery, Mason, a seventh-grade boy who can barely read and write, finds a way to finally tell the truth about what happened the day his best friend died. A 2019 Schneider Family Book Award winner.
The United States v. Jackie Robinson. By Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen. Illus. by R. Gregory Christie. HarperCollins/Balzer+Bray, $17.99 (9780062287847).
Although he is well known for breaking the color barrier in baseball, Jackie Robinson went to court years earlier to integrate troops while serving in the U.S. Army.
What Do You Do with a Voice like That? The Story of Extraordinary Congresswoman Barbara Jordan. By Chris Barton. Illus. by Ekua Holmes. Simon & Schuster/Beach Lane, $17.99 (9781481465618).
Stirring words and vibrant collage illustrations showcase the commanding voice of congresswoman Barbara Jordan, who shaped the political arena and created a powerful legacy.
When Angels Sing: The Story of Rock Legend Carlos Santana. By Michael Mahin. Illus. by Jose Ramirez. Atheneum, $17.99 (9781534404137).
Bold, folk-art-style illustrations and exhilarating language come together to convey the life of groundbreaking musician Carlos Santana. A 2019 Pura Belpré Illustrator Honor Book and a 2019 Sibert Honor Book.
Amal Unbound. By Aisha Saeed. Penguin/Nancy Paulsen, $17.99 (9780399544682).
Unknowingly, Amal insults a corrupt but powerful man in her small Pakistani village. As retribution, he claims her as an indentured servant. A 2019 Top 10 Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers and a 2019 Top 10 Amelia Bloomer Project Book.
Apollo 8: The Mission That Changed Everything. By Martin W. Sandler. Candlewick, $24.99 (9780763694890).
With riveting text and stunning archival photos capturing the excitement and danger, this compelling account of the Apollo 8 mission emphasizes the turning point of the space program.
Attucks! Oscar Robertson and the Basketball Team That Awakened a City. By Phillip Hoose. Farrar, $19.99 (9780374306120).
This is a comprehensive account of the people and the events involved in the first all-Black high-school basketball team that confronted segregation in Indianapolis and won.
Be Prepared. By Vera Brosgol. Illus. by Vera Brosgol and Alec Longstreth. First Second, $22.99 (9781626724440).
Brosgol comically recounts her experiences at a summer camp for Russian American kids in this graphic memoir.
Boots on the Ground: America’s War in Vietnam. By Elizabeth Partridge. Viking, $22.99 (9780670785063).
People who lived through the Vietnam War discuss its history and politics in this illuminating book featuring dramatic photographs and first-person accounts. A 2019 YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction finalist.
Children of Blood and Bone. By Tomi Adeyemi. Holt, $18.99 (9781250170972).
In an adventure infused with West African mythology, Zelie’s magic reawakens and she battles to restore magic to the oppressed kingdom of Orïsha. A 2019 Best Fiction for Young Adults and a 2019 Morris Award finalist.
Crash: The Great Depression and the Fall and Rise of America. By Marc Favreau. Little, Brown, $18.99 (9780316545860).
This account of American life during the 1930s covers the economic hardships and political changes of the period as well as the lingering influences on America today.
The Cruel Prince. By Holly Black. Little, Brown, $18.99 (9780316310277).
In this dark high fantasy, twin mortal girls are caught up in the political machinations of powerful, bloodthirsty faeries. A 2019 Best Fiction for Young Adults.
The Girl Who Drew Butterflies: How Maria Merian’s Art Changed Science. By Joyce Sidman. HMH, $17.99 (9780544717138).
On pages featuring Merian’s illustrations, this inviting volume demonstrates how her fascination with observing life cycles led her to create realistic and detailed drawings that changed scientific research. The 2019 Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award winner.
Ghost Boys. By Jewell Parker Rhodes. Little, Brown, $16.99 (9780316262286).
This novel explores the issues of racial violence and police brutality from the viewpoint of Jerome, the ghost of a 12-year-old Black boy gunned down by a white police officer.
Harbor Me. By Jacqueline Woodson. Penguin/Nancy Paulsen, $17.99 (9780399252525).
Six children learn the power of sharing their stories when their teacher assigns them to spend Fridays in a weekly conversation circle. A 2019 Best Fiction for Young Adults.
Hey, Kiddo: How I Lost My Mother, Found My Father, and Dealt with Family Addiction. By Jarrett J. Krosoczka. Illus. by the author. Scholastic/Graphix, $24.99 (9780545902472).
This graphic memoir offers an intimate portrait of a young artist growing up in challenging circumstances, including his single mother’s lifelong battle with drug addiction. A 2019 YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction finalist, a 2019 Top 10 Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers, and a 2019 Top 10 Great Graphic Novels for Teens.
Hurricane Child. By Kheryn Callender. Scholastic, $17.99 (9781338129304).
As a hurricane approaches her Caribbean island home, 12-year-old Caroline desperately searches for her mother in this story of abandonment, mysterious spirits, and a first crush. A 2019 Stonewall Book Award winner and a 2019 Top 10 Rainbow List selection.
The Hyena Scientist. By Sy Montgomery. Illus. by Nic Bishop. HMH, $18.99 (9780544635111).
Montgomery profiles biologist Kay Holekamp at her research camp in Masai Mara, Kenya, where she studies the social structure, communication, biology, and habits of spotted hyenas.
Illegal. By Eoin Colfer and Andrew Donkin. Illus. by Giovanni Rigano. Sourcebooks/Jabberwocky, $19.99 (9781492665823).
Determined preteen Ebo leaves his impoverished Nigerian village to follow his older siblings, all of whom have one dream: to make it to Europe, by any means possible. A 2019 Top 10 Great Graphic Novels for Teens.
Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World. By Ashley Herring Blake. Little, Brown, $16.99 (9780316515467).
As her family deals with the devastating aftermath of a tornado, Ivy loses a sketchbook in which she has drawn pictures that reveal her secret same-sex crushes. A 2019 Best Fiction for Young Adults and a 2019 Stonewall Honor Book.
Jazz Owls: A Novel of the Zoot Suit Riots. By Margarita Engle. Illus. by Rudy Gutierrez. Atheneum, $17.99 (9781534409439).
In this novel in verse set in 1940s Los Angeles, several Mexican American teens are swept into the chaos of the Zoot Suit Riots.
Lifeboat 12. By Susan Hood. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (9781481468831).
Ken Sparks drifts at sea on a lifeboat with a group of passengers after the sinking of a ship carrying evacuated British children to Canada during WWII.
The Mad Wolf’s Daughter. By Diane Magras. Penguin/Kathy Dawson, $16.99 (9780735229266).
Drest sets out on a medieval quest in the Scottish highlands to rescue her five brothers and father, who have been captured by a neighboring lord.
March Forward, Girl: From Young Warrior to the Little Rock Nine. By Melba Pattillo Beals. Illus. by Frank Morrison. HMH, $16.99 (9781328882127).
This compelling memoir about Melba Pattillo’s childhood focuses on her growing understanding of the impact of racism in the years leading up to her role as one of the historic Little Rock Nine.
The Night Diary. By Veera Hiranandani. Dial, $16.99 (9780735228511).
Told in the form of diary entries addressed to Nisha’s dead mother, this novel traces a mixed-faith family’s flight from Mirpur Khas, Pakistan, to Jodhpur, India, during the partitioning of India in 1947. A 2019 Newbery Honor Book.
Nowhere Boy. By Katherine Marsh. Roaring Brook, $16.99 (9781250307576).
When Max finds Syrian refugee Ahmed hiding alone in his basement in Belgium, Max decides to help Ahmed by keeping him secret and safe.
The Poet X. By Elizabeth Acevedo. HarperTeen, $17.99 (9780062662804).
Poetry provides teenage Xiomara an outlet to express herself as she struggles with her demanding mother’s religious expectations, a secret romance, and self-acceptance. The 2019 Michael L. Printz Award winner, the 2019 Pura Belpré Author Award winner, a 2019 Best Fiction for Young Adults, a 2019 Top 10 Amelia Bloomer Project Book, and a a 2019 Top 10 Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers.
The Prince and the Dressmaker. By Jen Wang. Illus. by the author. First Second, $24.99 (9781250159854).
Prince Sebastian secretly likes to wear dresses and hires talented dressmaker Frances to transform him into fashionista Lady Crystallia in this graphic novel. How long can the duo keep Sebastian’s secret? A 2019 Top 10 Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers.
Rebound. By Kwame Alexander. Illus. by Dawud Anyabwile. HMH, $16.99 (9780544868137).
After being sent to his grandparents’ house for the summer, Chuck Bell finds his groove through basketball, comics, and exploring his roots in this companion title to 2015 Newbery winner The Crossover.
Run for Your Life. By Silvana Gandolfi. Tr. by Lynne Sharon Schwartz. Restless, $15.99 (9781632061652).
In alternating voices, this Italian novel tells the story of two brothers separated by Mafia violence. A 2019 Batchelder Honor Book.
Small Spaces. By Katherine Arden. Putnam, $16.99 (9780525515029).
Horror fans will appreciate this suspenseful tale of a field trip gone wrong, as 11-year-old Ollie races against the clock to save herself and her classmates.
Something Rotten: A Fresh Look at Roadkill. By Heather L. Montgomery. Illus. by Kevin O’Malley. Bloomsbury, $16.99 (9781681199009).
Endlessly entertaining, this is a scientific look into the world of roadkill and how it informs statistics, news, and environmental challenges.
Spooked! How a Radio Broadcast and The War of the Worlds Sparked the 1938 Invasion of America. By Gail Jarrow. Boyds Mills/Calkins Creek, $18.95 (9781629797762).
This account of the infamous War of the Worlds radio show explores the key players and development of the broadcast as well as its aftermath. A 2019 Sibert Honor Book.
Streetcar to Justice: How Elizabeth Jennings Won the Right to Ride in New York. By Amy Hill Hearth. Greenwillow, $19.99 (9780062673602).
The little-known story of a young African American teacher, who was thrown off a streetcar in 1854 and won a court case against the railway company, comes to life in this account.
They Call Me Güero. By David Bowles. Cinco Puntos, $18.95 (9781947627062).
Güero describes his neighborhood on the Mexican border, his hardworking family, and his growing love of poetry in this novel in verse. A 2019 Pura Belpré Author Honor Book.
Tight. By Torrey Maldonado. Penguin/Nancy Paulsen, $16.99 (9781524740559).
Bryan’s friendship with new friend Mike highlights the young teen’s journey through peer pressure and family dynamics as he struggles to navigate the consequences of choosing between right and wrong.
The Unwanted: Stories of the Syrian Refugees. By Don Brown. Illus. by the author. HMH, $18.99 (9781328810151).
This graphic-novel account of the Syrian refugee crisis examines both the horror and the hope of the world’s response. The 2019 YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction winner, a 2019 Sibert Honor Book, and a 2019 Top 10 Great Graphic Novels for Teens.
Imagine. By Juan Felipe Herrera. Illus. by Lauren Castillo. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763690526).
Herrera uses poetry to recount his journey and invites readers to imagine their own futures full of possibilities.
We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga. By Traci Sorell. Illus. by Frane Lessac. Charlesbridge, $17.99 (9781580897223).
This authentic presentation of the contemporary life of the Cherokee people highlights the tradition of gratitude. A 2019 Sibert Honor Book.
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