New releases of fantasy and science fiction for children and teenagers--the end of October edition

Happy Halloween! Here are the end of October science fiction and fantasy treats for children and young adults. As usual, I get my list from Teens Read Too, and the blurbs from Amazon...

Nominations for the Cybils Awards ended two weeks ago, and the panelists are busily reading. It was a banner year for young adult fantasy in particular--will this coming year be as good? Starting from this post of new releases, these will all be books eligible for next year. I hope that by the time 2010 nominations role around, I'll have the whole year's worth of new sf/f mg and ya releases (at least the ones I know of) all covered, to help people remember the books they enjoyed most!

For 9-12 year olds

AVALON: THE WARLOCK DIARIES VOLUME 2 by Rachel Roberts. "No matter how hard they try, it seems warlock and mage magic just can’t work together. Kara is determined to find a way and asks Donovan to the Ravenswood "Adopt a Beast" dance. Things get out of hand when the imp, Crumble, lets loose a warlock love spell on the mages to keep them occupied while he kidnaps all of Ravenswood’s magical animals."

BURN by Camilla d'Errico. "Burn was once human. He also had a family and friends, until a metallic angel of death took everything from him. This mechanical monster, Shoftiel, was one of many living machines made to help humanity that revolted and declared war on their creators. It tore through Burn's home and wreaked havoc on his city until the buildings collapsed, crashing down upon them. Emerging from the rubble, Burn and Shoftiel discover their once separate bodies have become one -- neither human nor machine, but a freak union of both. Internally their minds are caught in a raging battle for control. Just as mankind must struggle against the sentients for survival, Burn must find the strength to overcome Shoftiel's genocidal programming to retain whatever's left of his humanity."

CARBONEL & CALIDOR by Barbara Sleigh. "Carbonel’s human friends Rosemary and John soon encounter magic in the form of a ring set with a fiery red stone that grants wishes to whoever wears it. And it’s a lucky thing, too, because Carbonel needs Rosemary and John’s help. It seems that his son Calidor has rejected his princely status for the love of a streetwise cat named Wellingtonia (also known as Dumpsie). Even worse, Calidor has apprenticed himself to the witch-in-training Mrs. Dibdin. With all this going on, it’s just a matter of time before Carbonel’s old nemesis Grisana—accompanied by her slyboots daughter Melissa—hatches a plan to take control of Carbonel’s kingdom once and for all."

THE CASE OF THE PURLOINED PROFESSOR: THE TAILS OF FREDERICK AND ISHBU by Judy Cox. "Frederick and Ishbu live in Miss Dove's classroom, where they learn--and eat--to their hearts' content. But one fateful evening Natasha arrives with disturbing news: her father, a famous professor and scientist, has gone missing! For the second time in their lives, the rats embark on a worldwide journey. They travel the globe to save their friend and meet such colorful characters as a secret clan of badgers, two vicious rat terriers, and a stuffy English show mouse. It's another whirlwind adventure they'll never forget!"

CROWN OF EARTH: SHIELD, SWORD, AND CROWN by Hilari Bell. "The moment Prince Edoran hears these words from Weasel's trusted friend Justice Holis, Edoran knows he has to find a way to rescue Weasel, who has been kidnapped in Edoran's place. Edoran's task is far from easy. Life-threatening challenges greet him at every step as he searches for Weasel, forced to hide his true identity from all he meets along the way. The journey is full of surprises and revelations, as Edoran learns for the first time the real meaning of hard labor and the cost of a meal. The story builds to a stunning climax, where the true nature of the magical objects of Deorthas is at last revealed."

DARK MAGE: AVALON, WEB OF MAGIC by Rachel Roberts. "The Dark Sorceress and her companions in the Otherworlds have decided to get rid of the mages once and for all. She targets Kara, who is particularly vulnerable to evil fairy magic since she is related to the Dark Sorceress. To save herself, Kara and her fellow mages, Emily and Adriane, must embark on a dangerous mission. They must go to the Otherworlds and retrieve the stolen power crystals of Avalon before it’s too late."

DRAKE'S COMPREHENSIVE COMPENDIUM OF DRAGONOLOGYby Dr. Ernest Drake & Dugald A. Steer. "From the esteemed Dr. Drake comes a beautifully illustrated, lovingly assembled tribute to all things dragonological, featuring:
— A guide to dragon species, with entries on everything from the well-known European dragon to the lesser-known hydra — as well as pseudo-species such as the phoenix and the incognito
— Insight into dragon biology, from flight to reproduction (with tips on how to tell the males from the females)
— An in-depth look at dragons’ habits, including migration, communication, camouflage, and notorious hoarding practices
— A section on humans and dragons, offering secrets of tracking and taming, deciphering riddles, and becoming a dragon master
— Practical essentials such as how to keep records, use spells, keep specimens, and care for sick dragons
— A comprehensive glossary, index, and much more."

A HORSE, OF COURSE!: WIND DANCERS by Sibley Miller. "Inspired by Career Day at their neighboring school, the Wind Dancers decide to explore what they can do and be too—from a police horse to a performance horse, from a race horse to a ranch horse, with funny and surprising results."

HUNGRY AS A HORSE: WIND DANCERS by Sibley Miller. "Sirocco, the lone colt among a trio of fillies, is always hungry. Will he lose his appetite when his fellow Wind Dancers challenge him to learn to cook, or will he become a chef extraordinaire?"

OVER MY DEAD BODY: 43 OLD CEMETERY ROAD by Kate Klise. "The International Movement for the Safety & Protection Of Our Kids & Youth (IMSPOOKY) dictates that Seymour cannot live in the mansion at 43 Old Cemetery Road "without the benefit of parents." Ignatius B. Grumply tries to explain to Dick Tater, the head of IMSPOOKY, that he and Seymour are in a lovely living (and publishing!) arrangement with the ghost of Olive C. Spence. Dick Tater is not convinced. But this clever trio can’t be broken up as easily as he imagines . . ."

POWERLESS by Matthew Cody. "Twelve-year-old Daniel, the new kid in town, soon learns the truth about his nice—but odd—new friends: one can fly, another can turn invisible, yet another controls electricity. Incredible. The superkids use their powers to secretly do good in the town, but they’re haunted by the fact that the moment they turn thirteen, their abilities will disappear—along with any memory that they ever had them. Is a memory-stealing supervillain sapping their powers?"

SECRET OF THE SIRENS: THE COMPANIONS QUARTET by Julia Golding. "A girl discovers that she can bond with all mythical creatures and becomes part of a secret society sworn to protect them."


Young Adult

BLACKBRIAR by William Sleator. "Danny can feel something sinister about his new home, Blackbriar, an old, abandoned cottage in the English countryside. The residents of a nearby town refuse to speak of the house and can barely look Danny in the eyes. Then Danny begins to have strange dreams of fires and witches, and awakes to shrieks of laughter that seem to come from another time and place.With help from his friend, Lark, Danny begins to unravel the mysteries of Blackbriar and its frightening past,through the discovery of an ancient doll and a chilling list of names and dates carved on the cellar door. But what might be most terrifying of all is the mystery that does not lie in the past but in the here and now. . . . "

DRAGONFLY by Julia Golding Princess Taoshira of the Blue Crescent Islands is appalled when she is ordered to marry Prince Ramil of Gerfal in order to unite their lands. And he's not too pleased, either. They hate each other on sight. So, when Tashi and Ramil are kidnapped, they fear there's no escape - from their kidnappers or from each other. Can they put aside their differences long enough to survive ambush, unarmed combat, brainwashing, and imprisonment? And will the people they meet on their adventure help them or betray them to the enemy?

THE ISLANDS OF THE BLESSED by Nancy Farmer. "In this much-anticipated conclusion to the Sea of Trolls trilogy, Notland is no place to seek one's true calling. Or is it?"

NEVER AFTER by Dan Elconin. "Leaving everything behind for the Island was Ricky's dream come true. When his happily ever after is not quite what it seems, he discovers that running away means running toward bigger problems. Trapped on the Island, Ricky must join together with the only people he can trust to help him face his fears and return home. But the only way off the Island is to confront the person who trapped Ricky and his friends in the first place. With countless enemies and true peril staring them down, Ricky's mission to leave this so-called paradise will become a battle for their very lives."

A NEW DAWN: YOUR FAVORITE AUTHORS ON STEPHENIE MEYER'S TWILIGHT SAGA edited by Ellen Hopkins. "A New Dawn is packed with the same debates readers engage in with friends: Should Bella have chosen Edward or Jacob? How much control do Meyer's vampires and werewolves really have over their own lives? The collection also goes further: Is Edward a romantic or a (really hot) sociopath? How do the Quileute werewolves compare to other Native American wolf myths? What does the Twilight series have in common with Shakespeare? With contributions from Megan McCafferty, Cassandra Clare, Rachel Caine and many more, A New Dawn answers these questions and more for a teen (and adult!) audience hungry for clever, view-changing commentary on their favorite series.


A BANQUET FOR HUNGRY GHOSTS: A COLLECTION OF DELICIOUSLY FRIGHTENING TALES by Ying Chang Compestine. "According to Chinese tradition, those who die hungry or unjustly come back to haunt the living. Some are appeased with food. But not all ghosts are successfully mollified. In this chilling collection of stories,Ying Chang Compestine takes readers on a journey through time and across different parts of China. From the building of the GreatWall in 200 BCE to themodern day of iPods, hungry ghosts continue to torment those who wronged them. At once a window into the history and culture of China and an ode to Chinese cuisine, this assortment of frightening tales—complete with historical notes and delectable recipes—will both scare and satiate!"

DESTINY'S PATH: WARRIOR PRINCESS by Frewin Jones. "Ranwen refuses to take orders from anyone—even the Shining Ones, the ancient gods whose power is feared throughout the land. They want her as their Chosen One, destined to save her country from the Saxons. But Branwen doubts she's truly ready to be a leader. Then a messenger from the skies shows her a vision of a bleak and violent future—a future in which Branwen has abandoned her destiny, and those most dear to her suffer unspeakable horrors. There's a blurry line between good and evil, and those Branwen trusts the most are capable of the greatest betrayal. The Shining Ones have spoken. Will Branwen answer their call?"

FIRE: TALES OF ELEMENTAL SPIRITS "Master storytellers Robin McKinley and Peter Dickinson, the team behind Water: Tales of Elemental Spirits, collaborate again to create five captivating tales incorporating the element of fire. In McKinley’s “First Flight,” a boy and his pet foogit unexpectedly take a dangerous ride on a dragon, and her “Hellhound” stars a mysterious dog as a key player in an eerie graveyard showdown. Dickinson introduces a young man who must defeat the creature threatening his clan in “Fireworm,” a slave who saves his village with a fiery magic spell in “Salamander Man,” and a girl whose new friend, the guardian of a mystical bird, is much older than he appears in “Phoenix.” With time periods ranging from prehistoric to present day, and settings as varied as a graveyard, a medieval marketplace and a dragon academy, these stories are sure to intrigue and delight the authors’ longtime fans and newcomers alike."

LOCKDOWN: ESCAPE FROM FURNACE by Alexander Gordon Smith. "Furnace Penitentiary: the world’s most secure prison for young offenders, buried a mile beneath the earth’s surface. Convicted of a murder he didn’t commit, sentenced to life without parole, “new fish” Alex Sawyer knows he has two choices: find a way out, or resign himself to a death behind bars, in the darkness at the bottom of the world. Except in Furnace, death is the least of his worries. Soon Alex discovers that the prison is a place of pure evil, where inhuman creatures in gas masks stalk the corridors at night, where giants in black suits drag screaming inmates into the shadows, where deformed beasts can be heard howling from the blood-drenched tunnels below. And behind everything is the mysterious, all-powerful warden, a man as cruel and dangerous as the devil himself, whose unthinkable acts have consequences that stretch far beyond the walls of the prison. The answers lie in a long-ago meteor strike, a World War II–era comic book (Fantastic Futures, starring the first superhero, Johnny Noble), the green-flamed Witch Fire, a hidden Shroud cave, and—possibly, unbelievably—“powerless” regular-kid Daniel himself."

THE SHADOW DRAGONS: CHRONICLES OF THE IMAGINARIUM GEOGRAPHICA by James A. Owen. "World War II has been raging for three years, but a more terrible evil is just over the horizon. The last stones are falling from the Keep of Time, and the Imperial Cartological Society, led by Richard Burton, has collected doors and is building a new tower at the request of an old enemy: the Winter King's shadow. He has a terrible weapon -- the Spear of Destiny -- that can be used to command the shadows of anyone it touches. The Shadow King uses the Spear of Destiny to enlist an unstoppable army of Dragon shadows. And after the Archipelago falls, the Shadow King intends to use the turmoil of World War II to take over both worlds. All the legendary Caretakers, past and present, come together to save two worlds, and their only hope lies with a small group of companions who are on the quest for the broken sword Caliburn: the Grail Child, Rose Dyson; her clockwork companion, the owl Archie; a dead professor of ancient literature; and the mythical knight Don Quixote."

TEMPTED: HOUSE OF NIGHT by P. C. & Kristin Cast. "So…you’d think after banishing an immortal being and a fallen High Priestess, saving Stark’s life, biting Heath, getting a headache from Erik, and almost dying, Zoey Redbird would catch a break. Sadly, a break is not in the House of Night school forecast for the High Priestess in training and her gang. Juggling three guys is anything but a stress reliever, especially when one of them is a sexy Warrior who is so into protecting Zoey that he can sense her emotions. Speaking of stress, the dark force lurking in the tunnels under the Tulsa Depot is spreading, and Zoey is beginning to believe Stevie Rae could be responsible for a lot more than a group of misfit red fledglings. Aphrodite’s visions warn Zoey to stay away from Kalona and his dark allure, but they also show that it is Zoey who has the power to stop the evil immortal. Soon it becomes obvious that Zoey has no choice: if she doesn’t go to Kalona he will exact a fiery vengeance on those closest to her."


  1. I've given you an award. It will be posted on Friday, November 6th


    Aaron @ Coffee For The Brain

  2. My oldest daughter is now a college senior, but she still loves young adult fantasy. In fact, she wrote a book, back in middle school, that was a fantasy novel. I sure hope she still has it, scribbled in her illegible handwriting, because it was really good. Unpolished, obviously -- she started it when she was 12 or 13, but still very good. I'll have to send her this list, to see if any pique her interest, then I'll try to pick some up for when she's home for Thanksgiving. She sent me a note about another teen author, Selena Cardenas, who's written the fantasy book "Sea Clearwater." What an interesting read! The author created all her own creatures; she designed their look and came up with their abilities. Very interesting -- and how great that this young person is published.

  3. Its sounds good I definately go for it..!


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