MIDDLE GRADE (9-12)
ALIENOLOGY by Dugald A. Steer. The year is 1969, and Professor Alan Grey is ready to lead you on a magical mystery tour of a world where space creatures mingle with earthlings, unbeknownst to all but a chosen few. On the one hand, this dazzling book is a field guide to other worlds, from the solar system to the laws of time and space; from the many species and cultures in faraway galaxies to the primitive state of alienology studies here on Earth. To the sharpest readers, however, this shining resource, with its constellation of brain-teasers, serves as a cunning test: Readers who solve its puzzles are guaranteed to achieve enlightenment—and have a chance to represent humankind in the intergalactic community at large. Here are just some of the topics covered:
*A map of the universe, showing the location of many alien worlds an alien species guide
*Alien biology, methods of communication, and civilizations
*Alien technology and spaceship design
*How to identify aliens who have already infiltrated human society and more!
ANCIENT, STRANGE, AND LOVELY: THE DRAGON CHRONICLES by Susan Fletcher. In a new dragon novel by Susan Fletcher, Bryn must save a dracling from a dangerous modern world that seems to have no place for an ancient dragon.
HARRY POTTY AND THE DEATHLY BORING by Stefan Petrucha. The creative team behind the hit Tales from the Crypt #8 “Diary of a Stinky Dead Kid” team up again to launch this new parody series from Papercutz! Following the killing of their mentor Dumb-as-a-door by the seemingly traitorous barista Frappe, Harry Potty, Don Measley and Whiny Stranger must find a way to defeat the nose-less dark lord Value-Mart (He-Whose-Prices-Can’t-Be-Beat) and his followers, the Odor Eaters in order to avenge the death of Harry Potty’s parents and bring balance to the world of magic.
MUSEUM OF THIEVES by Lian Tanner. Welcome to the tyrannical city of Jewel, where impatience is a sin and boldness is a crime.
Goldie Roth has lived in Jewel all her life. Like every child in the city, she wears a silver guardchain and is forced to obey the dreaded Blessed Guardians. She has never done anything by herself and won’t be allowed out on the streets unchained until Separation Day.
When Separation Day is canceled, Goldie, who has always been both impatient and bold, runs away, risking not only her own life but also the lives of those she has left behind. In the chaos that follows, she is lured to the mysterious Museum of Dunt, where she meets the boy Toadspit and discovers terrible secrets. Only the cunning mind of a thief can understand the museum’s strange, shifting rooms. Fortunately, Goldie has a talent for thieving.
Which is just as well, because the leader of the Blessed Guardians has his own plans for the museum—plans that threaten the lives of everyone Goldie loves. And it will take a daring thief to stop him. . . .
Museum of Thieves is a thrilling tale of destiny and danger, and of a courageous girl who has never been allowed to grow up—until now.
ON THE BLUE COMET by Rosemary Wells. One day in a house at the end of Lucifer Street, on the Mississippi River side of Cairo, Illinois, eleven-year-old Oscar Ogilvie’s life is changed forever. The Crash of 1929 has rippled across the country, and Oscar’s dad must sell their home—with all their cherished model trains—and head west in search of work. Forced to move in with his humorless aunt, Carmen and his teasing cousin, Willa Sue, Oscar is lonely and miserable—until he meets a mysterious drifter and witnesses a crime so stunning it catapults Oscar on an incredible train journey from coast to coast, from one decade to another.
A PRINCE AMONG FROGS: TALES OF THE FROG PRINCESS by E. D. Baker. Princess Millie and her fiancé, Audun, are busy preparing for their wedding when trouble starts brewing in Greater Greensward. Millie's baby brother, Felix, has been kidnapped and is trapped in a swamp full of other frogs. With all the adults busy fixing problems elsewhere in the kingdom, it's up to Millie and Audun to find him—but they need all the help they can get to fight the family's oldest nemesis, the angry wizard Olebald. From the deep blue sea to the soaring skies, our two heroes will stop at nothing to get their families back together and banish all the troublemakers for good.
RISE OF THE DARKLINGS: THE INVISIBLE ORDER by Paul Crilley. Emily Snow is twelve years old, supporting herself and her younger brother on the streets of Victorian England by selling watercress. One early winter morning on her way to buy supplies, she encounters a piskie--a small but very sarcastic fey creature that has been cornered by a group of the Black Sidhe, piskies from an opposing clan. She rescues him and unknowingly becomes involved in a war between the Seelie and the Unseelie, two opposing factions of fairies that have been battling each other throughout the long centuries of human history, with London--and England itself--as the ultimate prize.
When the Invisible Order--a centuries-old secret society of humans that has protected mankind from the fey's interference--gets involved, things really start to get complicated.
Now she is the central figure in this ancient war that could permanently change Earth. With no one to trust, Emily must rely on her own instincts and guile to make the right choices that could save her family and all of mankind.
THE SEARCH FOR WONDLA by Tony DiTerlizzi. When a marauder destroys the underground sanctuary that Eva Nine was raised in by the robot Muthr, the twelve-year-year-old girl is forced to flee aboveground. Eva Nine is searching for anyone else like her, for she knows that other humans exist, because of an item she treasures—a scrap of cardboard on which is depicted a young girl, an adult, and a robot, with the strange word, "WondLa." Tony DiTerlizzi honors traditional children's literature in this totally original space age adventure: one that is as complex as an alien planet, but as simple as a child's wish for a place to belong.
STAR OF STONE: CENTURY by Pierdomenico Baccalario. Four kids. A wooden top. And four postcards with secret instructions.
New York City, March 15
Another mysterious artifact reunites Harvey from New York, Elettra from Rome, Mistral from Paris, and Sheng from Shanghai in their attempt to save the world. When they meet people who knew Alfred Van Der Berger, the murdered professor who sent them on their quest in Rome, they realize that the challenge is far from over. And when they discover a series of four postcards written in code years ago by the professor himself, their destiny becomes even clearer.
The cards send the kids all over New York City, through old libraries and abandoned tunnels, in search of the Star of Stone, an ancient object fundamentally connected to the earth. But a new set of villains, predators of Manhattan nightlife, will do anything to stop them....
THIS ISN'T WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE by Pseudonymous Bosch. Cass finds herself alone and disoriented, a stranger in a dream-like, medieval world. Where is she? Who is she? With the help of a long-lost relative, she begins to uncover clues and secrets--piecing together her family's history as she fights her way back to the present world.
Meanwhile, back home, Cass is at the hospital in a deep coma. Max-Ernest knows she ate Time Travel Chocolate--and he's determined to find a cure. Can our expert hypochondriac diagnose Cass's condition before it's too late? And will he have what it takes to save the survivalist?
ASCENDANT by Diana Peterfreund. Now a fully trained unicorn hunter, Astrid Llewelyn is learning that she can’t solve all her problems with a bow and arrow. Her boyfriend has left Rome, the Cloisters is in dire financial straits, her best friend’s powers are mysteriously disintegrating, and her hope of becoming a scientist seems to be nothing but an impossible dream.
So when she’s given the opportunity to leave the Cloisters and use her skills as part of a scientific quest to discover the Remedy, Astrid leaps at the chance. Finally, she can have exactly what she wants—or can she? At Gordian headquarters deep in France, Astrid begins to question everything she had believed: her love for Giovanni, her loyalty to the Cloisters, and—most of all—her duty as a hunter. Should Astrid be saving the world from killer unicorns or saving unicorns from the world?
BRAIN JACK by Brian Falkner. Las Vegas is gone—destroyed in a terrorist attack. Black Hawk helicopters patrol the skies over New York City. And immersive online gaming is the most dangerous street drug around. In this dystopic near-future, technology has leapt forward once again, and neuro-headsets have replaced computer keyboards. Just slip on a headset, and it’s the Internet at the speed of thought.
For teen hacker Sam Wilson, a headset is a must. But as he becomes familiar with the new technology, he has a terrifying realization. If anything on his computer is vulnerable to a hack, what happens when his mind is linked to the system? Could consciousness itself be hijacked? Before he realizes what’s happened, Sam’s incursion against the world’s largest telecommunications company leads him to the heart of the nation’s cyberdefense network and brings him face to face with a terrifying and unforeseen threat.
CRAVE by Laura J. Burns & Melinda Metz. Shay has had a rare blood disorder since she was born. In fact, her mother married one of Shay’s doctors, Martin, who left his world-renowned leukemia research to try and figure out exactly what the disorder is and how to cure it. When she turns seventeen, Martin begins to give her new blood transfusions that make her feel the strongest she has ever felt. But she also has odd visions where she sees through the eyes of a vampire. At first, she thinks she must be imagining the visions, but when she begins to see Martin’s office in them, she knows she has to check it out. That’s when she finds Gabriel, a sexy, teenaged vampire, imprisoned in Martin’s office. The connection she has built with Gabriel compels her to set him free. But when he kidnaps her in an attempt at revenge on Martin, their lives become deeply intertwined. She doesn’t know the half of it.
DEAD BEAUTIFUL by Yvonne Woon. After Renee Winters discovers her parents lying dead in California’s Redwood Forest in what appears to be a strange double murder, her grandfather sends her off to Gottfried Academy in Maine, a remote and mysterious high school dedicated to philosophy, “crude sciences,” and Latin: the Language of the Dead. It’s here she meets Dante, a dark and elusive student to whom she feels inexplicably drawn. As they get to know each other better, Dante can’t seem to control his attraction either, and their desires gradually deepen into a complex and dangerous romance. Dangerous because Dante is hiding a frightening secret. A secret so terrible, it has him fearing for Renee’s life.
Dante’s not the only one with secrets, though. Turns out Gottfried Academy has a few of its own… Like, how come students keep disappearing? Why are the prefect-like Monitors creeping around campus during the night? And what exactly are the Headmistress and Professors really up to? Renee is determined to find out why.
DUST CITY by Robert Paul Weston. Who’s afraid of the big bad wolf?
His son, that’s who.
Ever since his father’s arrest for the murder of Little Red Riding Hood, teen wolf Henry Whelp has kept a low profile in a Home for Wayward Wolves . . . until a murder at the Home leads Henry to believe his father may have been framed.
Now, with the help of his kleptomaniac roommate, Jack, and a daring she-wolf named Fiona, Henry will have to venture deep into the heart of Dust City: a rundown, gritty metropolis where fairydust is craved by everyone and controlled by a dangerous mob of Water Nixies and their crime boss leader, Skinner.
Can Henry solve the mystery of his family’s sinister past? Or, like his father before him, is he destined for life as a big bad wolf?
END OF DAYS: NIGHT RUNNER by Max Turner. In this thrilling follow up to Night Runner, Zack Thomson is back with his friend Charlie, searching for answers all the while being hunted by a creature most deadly...
While Charlie struggles with his vampirism, he, Zack, and their friends are pulled into a conflict with the mysterious Mr. Hyde, a creature who hunts vampires. As the story unfolds, and the ties between Zach and his girlfriend Luna intensify, the network of support around them collapses, forcing them to redefine their notions of good and evil and find a way forward.
THE EXILED QUEEN: A SEVEN REALMS NOVEL by Cinda Williams Chima. Haunted by the loss of his mother and sister, Han Alister journeys south to begin his schooling at Mystwerk House in Oden’s Ford. But leaving the Fells doesn’t mean danger isn’t far behind. Han is hunted every step of the way by the Bayars, a powerful wizarding family set on reclaiming the amulet Han stole from them. And Mystwerk House has dangers of its own. There, Han meets Crow, a mysterious wizard who agrees to tutor Han in the darker parts of sorcery—but the bargain they make is one Han may regret.
Meanwhile, Princess Raisa ana’Marianna runs from a forced marriage in the Fells, accompanied by her friend Amon and his triple of cadets. Now, the safest place for Raisa is Wein House, the military academy at Oden's Ford. If Raisa can pass as a regular student, Wein House will offer both sanctuary and the education Raisa needs to succeed as the next Gray Wolf queen.
THE FRENZY by Francesca Lia Block. Liv has a secret.
Something happened to her when she was thirteen. Something that changed everything. Liv knows she doesn’t belong anymore—not in her own skin, not in her family . . . not anywhere. The only time she truly feels like herself is when she’s with her boyfriend, Corey, and in the woods that surround her town.
But in the woods, a mysterious woman watches Liv. In the woods, a pack of wild boys lurks. In the woods, Liv learns about the curse that will haunt her forever. The curse that caused the frenzy four years ago. And that may cause it again, all too soon.
While Corey and Liv’s love binds them together, Liv’s dark secret threatens to tear them apart as she struggles to understand who—or what—she really is. And by the light of the full moon, the most dangerous secrets bare their claws. . . .
THE GENIUS WARS by Catherine Jinks. After abandoning a life full of deception and mistrust, fifteen-year-old Cadel has finally found his niche. He has a proper home, good friends and loving parents. He's even studying at university.
But he's still not safe from Prosper English, who's now a fugitive from justice and determined to smash everything that Cadel has struggled to build. When Cadel's nearest and dearest are threatened, he must launch an all-out attack on the man he once viewed as his father.
Can he track down Prosper before it's too late? And what rules will he have to break in the process?
HOW TO LOVE A WEREWOLF by Sophie Collins. Whether he's been your best friend for years or you've suddenly sprung a crazily close bond with the new kid on the block, a werewolf is a girl's best friend. But what if he wants more? Don't let confusing feelings mess up your friendships, or crazy crushes stand in the way of true love. Whether you've got a vampire love to die for, or fancy running with wolves for a change, we show you how to track down your werewolf, get in with his pack and untangle even the trickiest of love triangles. Packed with charts, quizzes, and the savviest advice around, this little guide can sort a supernaturally complicated love life, and help you figure out your feelings once and for all (without leaving him in the doghouse).
I SHALL WEAR MIDNIGHT by Terry Pratchett. It starts with whispers. Then someone picks up a stone. Finally, the fires begin. When people turn on witches, the innocents suffer. . . . Tiffany Aching has spent years studying with senior witches, and now she is on her own. As the witch of the Chalk, she performs the bits of witchcraft that aren’t sparkly, aren’t fun, don’t involve any kind of wand, and that people seldom ever hear about: She does the unglamorous work of caring for the needy.
But someone—or something—is igniting fear, inculcating dark thoughts and angry murmurs against witches. Aided by her tiny blue allies, the Wee Free Men, Tiffany must find the source of this unrest and defeat the evil at its root—before it takes her life. Because if Tiffany falls, the whole Chalk falls with her.
MONSTERS OF MEN: CHAOS WALKING by Patrick Ness. "War," says the Mayor. "At last." Three armies march on New Prentisstown, each one intent on destroying the others. Todd and Viola are caught in the middle, with no chance of escape. As the battles commence, how can they hope to stop the fighting? How can there ever be peace when they're so hopelessly outnumbered? And if war makes monsters of men, what terrible choices await? But then a third voice breaks into the battle, one bent on revenge - the electrifying finale to the award-winning "Chaos Walking" trilogy, Monsters of Men is a heart-stopping novel about power, survival, and the devastating realities of war.
THE REPLACEMENT by Brenna Yovanoff. Mackie Doyle seems like everyone else in the perfect little town of Gentry, but he is living with a fatal secret - he is a Replacement, left in the crib of a human baby sixteen years ago. Now the creatures under the hill want him back, and Mackie must decide where he really belongs and what he really wants.
A month ago, Mackie might have told them to buzz off. But now, with a budding relationship with tough, wounded, beautiful Tate, Mackie has too much to lose. Will love finally make him worthy of the human world?
TORMENT: A FALLEN NOVEL by Lauren Kate. How many lives do you need to live before you find someone worth dying for? In the aftermath of what happened at Sword & Cross, Luce has been hidden away by her cursed angelic boyfriend, Daniel, in a new school filled with Nephilim, the offspring of fallen angels and humans. Daniel promises she will be safe here, protected from those who would kill her. At the school Luce discovers what the Shadows that have followed her all her life mean - and how to manipulate them to see into her other lives. Yet the more Luce learns about herself, the more she realizes that the past is her only key to unlocking her future...and that Daniel hasn't told her everything. What if his version of the past isn't actually the way things happened...what if Luce was really meant to be with someone else?
TWELFTH GRADE KILLS: THE CHRONICLES OF VLADIMIR TOD by Heather Brewer. Vlad’s running out of time. The Elysian Council has given him weeks to live, and that’s if the Slayer Society doesn’t kill him – along with all the citizens of Bathory – first. Then there’s the issue of Vlad’s father, who may or may not still be alive after all these years, and oh yeah, that tiny little detail in the Pravus prophecy about Vlad enslaving Vampirekind and the human race. So much for college applications.
In this epic finale to Heather Brewer’s heart-stopping Chronicles of Vladimir Tod, dark secrets will be revealed, old friends will become enemies, and warm blood will run cold. Just be careful it isn’t yours.
WHEN ROSE WAKES by Christopher Golden Her terrifying dreams are nothing compared to the all-too-real nightmare that awaits. . . .Ever since sixteen-year-old Rose DuBois woke up from months in a coma with absolutely no memories, she’s had to start from scratch. She knows she loves her two aunts who take care of her, and that they all used to live in France, but everything else from her life before is a blank.Rose tries to push through the memory gaps and start her new life, attending high school and living in Boston with her aunts, who have seriously old world ideas. Especially when it comes to boys. But despite their seemingly irrational fears and odd superstitions, they insist Rose not worry about the eerie dreams she’s having, vivid nightmares that she comes to realize are strangely like the fairy tale Sleeping Beauty. The evil witch, the friendly fairies, a curse that puts an entire town to sleep—Rose relives the frightening story every night. And when a mysterious raven-haired woman starts following her, Rose begins to wonder if she is the dormant princess. And now that she’s awake, she’s in terrible, terrible danger. . . .
WILDWING by Emily Whitman When Addy is swept back in time, she couldn't be happier to leave her miser-able life behind. Now she's mistaken for Lady Matilda, the pampered ward of the king. If Addy can play her part, she'll have glorious gowns, jewels, and something she's always longed for—the respect and admiration of others. But then she meets Will, the falconer's son with sky blue eyes, who unsettles all her plans.
From shipwrecks to castle dungeons, from betrothals to hidden conspiracies, Addy finds herself in a world where she's not the only one with a dangerous secret. When she discovers the truth, Addy must take matters into her own hands. The stakes? Her chance at true love . . . and the life she's meant to live.
ZOMBIES VS. UNICORNS edited by Holly Black & Justine Larbalestier. It's a question as old as time itself: which is better, the zombie or the unicorn? In this anthology, edited by Holly Black and Justine Larbalestier (unicorn and zombie, respectively), strong arguments are made for both sides in the form of short stories. Half of the stories portray the strengths--for good and evil--of unicorns and half show the good (and really, really bad-ass) side of zombies. Contributors include many bestselling teen authors, including Cassandra Clare, Libba Bray, Maureen Johnson, Meg Cabot, Scott Westerfeld, and Margo Lanagan. This anthology will have everyone asking: Team Zombie or Team Unicorn?