Cindy and Lynn: Bookends Blog here, reporting from the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.
Yeah, we know the exhibit hall included technology and furniture vendors, library suppliers, and a food court, but our favorite aisles are the ones with booth after booth of youth books and our familiar school and library marketing reps. While we tried to follow our own advice about not being greedy in the aisles, we are delighted that these books made it into our suitcase:
Dead Voices, by Katherine Arden (Penguin/Putnam, Aug. 2019)
We raved about Small Spaces last year, and it has become a middle school favorite. Its sequel, Dead Voices, was one of the books we most wanted to get and it was the arc that we read on the flight home. If you want middle grade creepy, this is your series. Dead Voices finds Ollie, Coco, and Brian who survived the scarecrows and spooky cornfields of the first book now snowed-in at a haunted ski lodge that did remind us a little of the setting of Stephen King’s The Shining. We gotta believe he would love this book, too.
White Bird, by R. J. Palacio (Random, Oct. 2019)
Palacio, the author of the wildly popular Wonder, has written and illustrated her first graphic novel, White Bird. We were so excited to receive a gorgeous color galley and cannot wait to read it! This story is about a young Jewish girl who is hidden from the Nazis in occupied France during WWII.
Strange Birds: A Field Guide to Ruffling Feathers, by Celia C. Perez (Penguin/Kokila, Sep. 2019)
One of our favorites of 2018 was Perez’s debut, The First Rule of Punk (Penguin, 2018). We stood in a very long line to get our hands on her new book and it sounds fabulous. The cover blurb says, “When three very different girls find a mysterious invitation to a lavish mansion, the promise of adventure is too intriguing to pass up.” See, you’d stand in line too!
Free Lunch, by Rex Ogle (Norton, Sept. 2019)
Rex Ogle was looking forward to starting sixth grade. Things are tough at home, though, with his mom and her boyfriend out of work and so she signs Rex up for free lunch. Then Rex discovers he has to announce that fact out loud every day to the lunch lady. Our school district has almost 60% of our students on a free lunch program and we think this is one that is truly important for them and everyone else in the district as well.
Out to Get You: 13 Tales of Weirdness and Woe, by Josh Allen (Holiday, Sept. 2019)
A debut author collection, blurbed by Gary Schmidt: Wonderful and weird, compelling and unsettling…These stories are scary because they are so very true.” We’re in!
While there was no lack of swag at the booths, our favorite item this year was a button promoting Jessica Pan’s new book, Sorry I’m Late, I Didn’t Want to Come (Andrews McMeel, 2019). We can think of lots of places to sport this…staff meetings, anyone?
allthe rest of our student population.