7 Apr Aru Shah and the Tree of Wishes by Roshani Chokshi. Rick Riordan Presents. War between the devas and the demons is imminent, and the Otherworld is on high alert. When intelligence from the human world reveals that the Sleeper is holding a powerful clairvoyant and her sister captive, 14-year-old Aru and her friends launch a search-and-rescue mission. The captives, a pair of twins, turn out to be the newest Pandava sisters, though, according to a prophecy, one sister is not true.
During the celebration of Holi, the heavenly attendants stage a massage PR rebranding campaign to convince everyone that the Pandavas are to be trusted. As much as Aru relishes the attention, she fears that she is destined to bring destruction to her sisters, as the Sleeper has predicted. Aru believes that the only way to prove her reputation is to find the Kalpavriksha, the wish-granting tree that came out of the Ocean of Milk when it was churned. If she can reach it before the Sleeper, perhaps she can turn everything around with one wish.
Careful what you wish for, Aru.
7 Apr Crossing the Farak River by Michelle Aung Thin. Annick Press. After the Myanmar army destroys her village, Hasina wonders who she can trust in this novel about the persecution of the Rohingya people.
7 Apr Ghost Squad by Claribel A. Ortega. Scholastic. MG fantasy/action DEBUT
Shortly before Halloween, Lucely and her best friend, Syd, cast a spell that accidentally awakens malicious spirits, wreaking havoc throughout St. Augustine. Together, they must join forces with Syd’s witch grandmother, Babette, and her tubby tabby, Chunk, to fight the haunting head-on and reverse the curse to save the town and Lucely’s firefly spirits before it’s too late.
7 Apr Gotham High by Melissa de la Cruz, illus. by Thomas Pitilli. DC Ink. After Bruce Wayne befriends Selina Kyle, the future Catwoman, a kidnapping rattles their school.
7 Apr The Magic in Changing Your Stars by Leah Henderson. Sterling Children’s Books. Magic tap shoes transport Ailey to 1930s Harlem, where he meets another young dancer, his grandfather.
7 Apr Into the Tall Grass by Loriel Ryan. McElderry. SFF DEBUT
Yolanda Rodríguez-O’Connell has a secret. All the members of her family have a magical gift—all, that is, except for Yolanda. Still, it’s something she can never talk about, or the townsfolk will call her family brujas—witches. When her grandmother, Wela, falls into an unexplained sleep, Yolanda is scared. Her father is off fighting in a faraway war, her mother died long ago, and Yolanda has isolated herself from her best friend and twin sister. If she loses her grandmother, who will she have left?
When a strange grass emerges in the desert behind their house, Wela miraculously wakes, begging Yolanda to take her to the lone pecan tree left on their land. Determined not to lose her, Yolanda sets out on this journey with her sister, her ex-best friend, and a boy who has a crush on her. But what is the mysterious box that her grandmother needs to find? And how will going to the pecan tree make everything all right? Along the way, Yolanda discovers long-buried secrets that have made their family gift a family curse. But she also finds the healing power of the magic all around her, which just might promise a new beginning.
7 Apr Love, Love by Victoria Chang. Sterling Children’s Books. A Taiwanese American girl contends with school bullies, probes the mystery of her sister’s illness, and finds validation on the tennis court.
7 Apr Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know by Samira Ahmed. Soho Teen. On holiday in Paris, a teen learns the story of a 19th century Muslim woman who crossed paths with famous artists.
7 Apr One Earth: People of Color Protecting Our Planet by Anuradha Rao. Orca Books. Profiles 20 environmental heroes of color from around the world.
8 Apr We Dream of Space by Erin Entrada Kelly. Greenwillow Books. In 1986, siblings await the launch of the space shuttle Challenger as they struggle with their own anxieties.
8 Apr Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo. Hot Key Books. Grieving the death of their father, two sisters learn more about him and each other.
14 Apr Box: Henry Brown Mails Himself to Freedom by Carole Boston Weatherford, illus. by Michele Wood. Candlewick. Relays the story of this man who shipped himself out of slavery.
14 Apr Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko. Amulet. Afrofuturism DEBUT
A girl raised in isolation stars in this fantasy about loyalty, fate, and the lengths we’re willing to go to for those we love.
14 Apr This Is My Brain in Love by I.W. Gregorio. Little, Brown Books. Romance blossoms when high school junior Jocelyn Wu teams up with new intern Will to save her family’s failing restaurant.
14 Apr When Stars Are Scattered by Victoria Jamieson and Omar Mohamed, illus. by Jamieson and Iman Geddy. Dial Books. This graphic novel chronicles Mohamed’s experiences growing up in a refugee camp in Kenya with his non-verbal younger brother.
15 Apr Felix Ever After by Kacen Callender. HarperCollins. A transgender teen grapples with identity and self-discovery while falling in love for the first time.
21 April Banned Book Club by Kim Hyun Sook, Ryan Estrada and Hyun-Ju Ko. Iron Circus Press.
When Kim Hyun Sook started college in 1983 she was ready for her world to open up. After acing her exams and sort-of convincing her traditional mother that it was a good idea for a woman to go to college, she looked forward to soaking up the ideas of Western Literature far from the drudgery she was promised at her family’s restaurant. But literature class would prove to be just the start of a massive turning point, still focused on reading but with life-or-death stakes she never could have imagined.
This was during South Korea’s Fifth Republic, a military regime that entrenched its power through censorship, torture, and the murder of protestors. In this charged political climate, with Molotov cocktails flying and fellow students disappearing for hours and returning with bruises, Hyun Sook sought refuge in the comfort of books. When the handsome young editor of the school newspaper invited her to his reading group, she expected to pop into the cafeteria to talk about Moby Dick, Hamlet, and The Scarlet Letter. Instead she found herself hiding in a basement as the youngest member of an underground banned book club. And as Hyun Sook soon discovered, in a totalitarian regime, the delights of discovering great works of illicit literature are quickly overshadowed by fear and violence as the walls close in.
21 Apr Lifting as We Climb: Black Women’s Battle for the Ballot Box by Evette Dionne. Viking.
An eye-opening book that tells the important, overlooked story of black women as a force in the suffrage movement–when fellow suffragists did not accept them as equal partners in the struggle.
21 Apr The Silence of Bones by June Hur. Feiwel and Friends. Bloody YA Historical Mystery DEBUT
1800, Joseon (Korea). Homesick and orphaned sixteen-year-old Seol is living out the ancient curse: “May you live in interesting times.” Indentured to the police bureau, she’s been tasked with assisting a well-respected young inspector with the investigation into the politically charged murder of a noblewoman.
As they delve deeper into the dead woman’s secrets, Seol forms an unlikely bond of friendship with the inspector. But her loyalty is tested when he becomes the prime suspect, and Seol may be the only one capable of discovering what truly happened on the night of the murder. But in a land where silence and obedience are valued above all else, curiosity can be deadly.
28 Apr All Boys Aren’t Blue by George M. Johnson. Memoir manifesto DEBUT
Both a primer for teens eager to be allies as well as a reassuring testimony for young queer men of color, All Boys Aren’t Blue covers topics such as gender identity, toxic masculinity, brotherhood, family, structural marginalization, consent, and Black joy. Johnson’s emotionally frank style of writing will appeal directly to young adults.
28 Apr A Breath Too Late by Rocky Callen. Henry Holt. After death fictional epistolary
Seventeen-year-old Ellie had no hope left. Yet the day after she dies by suicide, she finds herself in the midst of an out-of-body experience. She is a spectator, swaying between past and present, retracing the events that unfolded prior to her death. But there are gaps in her memory, fractured pieces Ellie is desperate to re-assemble. There’s her mother, a songbird who wanted to break free from her oppressive cage. The boy made of brushstrokes and goofy smiles who brought color into a gray world. Her brooding father, with his sad puppy eyes and clenched fists.
28 Apr The Compton Cowboys (young readers’ ed.) by Walter Thompson- Hernandez. HarperCollins. Adaptation of the account of nine young black men and one woman from California who found purpose through raising and riding horses.
28 Apr Incendiary (Hollow Crown #1) by Zoraida Córdova. Disney Hyperion. In this series starter, a girl in Inquisitionera Spain is determined to avenge a lost love.
28 Apr Ryan Hart #1: Ways to Make Sunshine by Renée Watson. Bloomsbury. Launches a series about a black girl who makes the best out of setbacks, and her adventurous, loving family.
29 Apr Parachutes by Kelly Yang. Katherine Tegen Books. Claire navigates life as one of the “parachutes,” teens sent to live and study in the U.S. while their wealthy parents remain in Asia.