Latinx Heritage Month Reading List

Every year, Latinx Heritage Month is observed between September 15 and October 15. We’ve put together a list of some of our favourite titles from Latinx authors and encourage you to give them a read!

Ages 3-7

Lord Help Me
By Emme Muñiz
Illustrated by Brenda Figueroa
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593120088 | Crown BFYR
The everyday power of prayer comes to life in this inspirational picture book written by twelve-year-old budding singer Emme Muñiz, daughter of Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony. We all have moments every day where we can use a little help. Some are small, like waking up for school or getting along with a sibling. Others are big, like helping to save the planet and all its creatures—especially sloths! But asking God for help always brings us the strength to get through anything. Emme Muñiz shares her own daily prayers to offer families a way to embrace the peace and power of everyday faith.

Ages 4-8

Alma and How She Got Her Name
By Juana Martinez-Neal
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780763693558 | Candlewick
If you ask her, Alma Sofia Esperanza José Pura Candela has way too many names: six! How did such a small person wind up with such a large name? Alma turns to Daddy for an answer and learns of Sofia, the grandmother who loved books and flowers; Esperanza, the great-grandmother who longed to travel; José, the grandfather who was an artist; and other namesakes, too. As she hears the story of her name, Alma starts to think it might be a perfect fit after all — and realizes that she will one day have her own story to tell. In her author-illustrator debut, Juana Martinez-Neal opens a treasure box of discovery for children who may be curious about their own origin stories or names.

Carmela Full of Wishes
By Matt De La Peña
Illustrated by Christian Robinson
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780399549045 | Putnam BFYR
When Carmela wakes up on her birthday, her wish has already come true–she’s finally old enough to join her big brother as he does the family errands. Together, they travel through their neighborhood, past the crowded bus stop, the fenced-off repair shop, and the panadería, until they arrive at the Laundromat, where Carmela finds a lone dandelion growing in the pavement. But before she can blow its white fluff away, her brother tells her she has to make a wish. If only she can think of just the right wish to make…With lyrical, stirring text and stunning, evocative artwork, Matt de la Peña and Christian Robinson have crafted a moving ode to family, to dreamers, and to finding hope in the most unexpected places.

Dreamers
By Yuyi Morales
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823440559 | Neal Porter Books
Dreamers is a celebration of making your home with the things you always carry: your resilience, your dreams, your hopes and history. It’s the story of finding your way in a new place, of navigating an unfamiliar world and finding the best parts of it. In dark times, it’s a promise that you can make better tomorrows. This lovingly-illustrated picture book memoir looks at the myriad gifts migrantes bring with them when they leave their homes. It’s a story about family. And it’s a story to remind us that we are all dreamers, bringing our own strengths wherever we roam. Beautiful and powerful at any time but given particular urgency as the status of our own Dreamers becomes uncertain, this is a story that is both topical and timeless. The lyrical text is complemented by sumptuously detailed illustrations, rich in symbolism. Also included are a brief autobiographical essay about Yuyi’s own experience, a list of books that inspired her (and still do), and a description of the beautiful images, textures, and mementos she used to create this book. A parallel Spanish-language edition, Soñadores, is also available.

My Papi Has a Motorcycle
By Isabel Quintero
Illustrated by Zeke Peña
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780525553410 | Kokila
When Daisy Ramona zooms around her neighborhood with her papi on his motorcycle, she sees the people and places she’s always known. She also sees a community that is rapidly changing around her.
But as the sun sets purple-blue-gold behind Daisy Ramona and her papi, she knows that the love she feels will always be there. With vivid illustrations and text bursting with heart, My Papi Has a Motorcycle is a young girl’s love letter to her hardworking dad and to memories of home that we hold close in the midst of change.

Ages 5-9

Imagina
By Juan Felipe Herrera
Illustrated by Lauren Castillo
32 Pages | Ages 5-9 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536211702 | Candlewick
Have you ever imagined what you might be when you grow up? When he was very young, Juan Felipe Herrera picked chamomile flowers in windy fields and let tadpoles swim across his hands in a creek. He slept outside and learned to say goodbye to his amiguitos each time his family moved to a new town. He went to school and taught himself to read and write English and filled paper pads with rivers of ink as he walked down the street after school. And when he grew up, he became the United States Poet Laureate and read his poems aloud on the steps of the Library of Congress. If he could do all of that . . . what could you do? With this newly translated illustrated poem of endless possibility, Juan Felipe Herrera and Lauren Castillo breathe magic into the hopes and dreams of readers searching for their place in life.

Islandborn
By Junot Diaz
Illustrated by Leo Espinosa
48 Pages | Ages 5-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780735229860 | Dial BFYR
When Lola’s teacher asks the students to draw a picture of where their families immigrated from, all the kids are excited. Except Lola. She can’t remember The Island—she left when she was just a baby. But with the help of her family and friends, and their memories—joyous, fantastical, heartbreaking, and frightening—Lola’s imagination takes her on an extraordinary journey back to The Island.  As she draws closer to the heart of her family’s story, Lola comes to understand the truth of her abuela’s words: “Just because you don’t remember a place doesn’t mean it’s not in you.”
Gloriously illustrated and lyrically written, Islandborn is a celebration of creativity, diversity, and our imagination’s boundless ability to connect us—to our families, to our past and to ourselves.

Juana and Lucas
By Juana Medina
96 Pages | Ages 5-8 | Paperback
ISBN 9781536206395 | Candlewick
Fans of Judy Moody and Clarice Bean will love Juana, the spunky young Colombian girl who stars in this playful, abundantly illustrated series. Juana loves many things: drawing, living in Bogotá, Colombia, and especially her dog, Lucas, the best amigo ever. She does not love wearing her itchy school uniform, solving math problems, or learning the English. Why is it so important to learn a language that makes so little sense? Hilarious, energetic, and utterly relatable, Juana will win over los corazones (the hearts) of readers everywhere.

Ages 8-12

Merci Suarez Changes Gears
By Meg Medina
368 Pages | Ages 9-12 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536212587 | Candlewick
Merci Suárez knew that sixth grade would be different, but she had no idea just how different. For starters, as strong and thoughtful as Merci is, she has never been completely like the other kids at her private school in Florida, because she and her older brother, Roli, are scholarship students. They don’t have a big house or a fancy boat, and they have to do extra community service to make up for their free tuition. So when bossy Edna Santos sets her sights on the new boy who happens to be Merci’s school-assigned Sunshine Buddy, Merci becomes the target of Edna’s jealousy. Things aren’t going well at home, either: Merci’s grandfather and most trusted ally, Lolo, has been acting strangely lately — forgetting important things, falling from his bike, and getting angry over nothing. And Merci is left to her own worries, because no one in her family will tell her what’s going on. Winner of the 2019 Newbery Medal, this coming-of-age tale by New York Times best-selling author Meg Medina gets to the heart of the confusion and constant change that defines middle school — and the steadfast connection that defines family.

My Year in the Middle
By Lila Quintero Weaver
288 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Paperback
ISBN 9781536213171 | Candlewick
Sixth-grader Lu Olivera just wants to keep her head down and get along with everyone in her class. The trouble is, Lu’s old friends have been changing lately — acting boy crazy and making snide remarks about Lu’s newfound talent for running track. Lu’s secret hope for a new friend is fellow runner Belinda Gresham. But in 1970 in Red Grove, Alabama, blacks and whites don’t mix. As segregationist ex-governor George Wallace ramps up his campaign against the current governor, Albert Brewer, growing tensions in the state — and in the classroom — mean that Lu can’t stay neutral about the racial divide at school. Will she find the gumption to stand up for what’s right and to choose friends who do the same?

The First Rule of Punk
By Celia C. Pérez
336 Pages | Ages 9-12 | Paperback
ISBN 9780425290422 | Viking BFYR
There are no shortcuts to surviving your first day at a new school—you can’t fix it with duct tape like you would your Chuck Taylors. On Day One, twelve-year-old Malú (María Luisa, if you want to annoy her) inadvertently upsets Posada Middle School’s queen bee, violates the school’s dress code with her punk rock look, and disappoints her college-professor mom in the process. Her dad, who now lives a thousand miles away, says things will get better as long as she remembers the first rule of punk: be yourself. The real Malú loves rock music, skateboarding, zines, and Soyrizo (hold the cilantro, please). And when she assembles a group of like-minded misfits at school and starts a band, Malú finally begins to feel at home. She’ll do anything to preserve this, which includes standing up to an anti-punk school administration to fight for her right to express herself!

The Water Bears
By Kim Baker
272 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781984852205 | Wendy Lamb Books
Newt Gomez has a thing with bears. Last year he survived a bear attack. And this year, he finds an unusual bear statue that just might grant wishes. Newt’s best friend, Ethan, notices a wishbone on the statue and decides to make a wish. When it comes true, Newt thinks it’s a coincidence. Even as more people wish on the bear and their wishes come true, Newt is not convinced. But Newt has a wish too: while he loves his home on eccentric Murphy Island, he wants to go to middle school on the mainland, where his warm extended family lives. There, he’s not the only Latinx kid, he won’t have to drive the former taco truck–a gift from his parents–and he won’t have to perform in the talent show. Most importantly, on the mainland, he never has bad dreams about the attack. Newt is almost ready to make a secret wish when everything changes. Tackling themes of survival and self-acceptance, Newt’s story illuminates the magic in our world, where reality is often uncertain but always full of salvageable wonders.

Ages 10+

Each Tiny Spark
By Pablo Cartaya
352 Pages | Ages 10+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780451479747 | Kokila
Emilia Torres has a wandering mind. It’s hard for her to follow along at school, and sometimes she forgets to do what her mom or abuela asks. But she remembers what matters: a time when her family was whole and home made sense. When Dad returns from deployment, Emilia expects that her life will get back to normal. Instead, it unravels.
Dad shuts himself in the back stall of their family’s auto shop to work on an old car. Emilia peeks in on him daily, mesmerized by his welder. One day, Dad calls Emilia over. Then, he teaches her how to weld. And over time, flickers of her old dad reappear. But as Emilia finds a way to repair the relationship with her father at home, her community ruptures with some of her classmates, like her best friend, Gus, at the center of the conflict.

Letters from Cuba
By Ruth Behar
272 Pages | Ages 10+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780525516477 | Nancy Paulsen Books
The situation is getting dire for Jews in Poland on the eve of World War II. Esther’s father has fled to Cuba, and she is the first one to join him. It’s heartbreaking to be separated from her beloved sister, so Esther promises to write down everything that happens until they’re reunited. And she does, recording both the good–the kindness of the Cuban people and her discovery of a valuable hidden talent–and the bad: the fact that Nazism has found a foothold even in Cuba. Esther’s evocative letters are full of her appreciation for life and reveal a resourceful, determined girl with a rare ability to bring people together, all the while striving to get the rest of their family out of Poland before it’s too late. Based on Ruth Behar’s family history, this compelling story celebrates the resilience of the human spirit in the most challenging times.

What Lane?
By Torrey Maldonado
144 Pages | Ages 10+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780525518433 | Nancy Paulsen Books
Anything his friends can do, Stephen should be able to do too, right? So when they dare each other to sneak into an abandoned building, he doesn’t think it’s his lane, but he goes. Here’s the thing, though: Can he do everything his friends can? Lately, he’s not so sure. As a mixed kid, he feels like he’s living in two worlds with different rules–and he’s been noticing that strangers treat him differently than his white friends…So what’ll he do? Hold on tight as Stephen swerves in and out of lanes to find out which are his–and who should be with him. Torrey Maldonado, author of the highly acclaimed Tight, does a masterful job showing a young boy coming of age in a racially split world, trying to blaze a way to be his best self.

Ages 12+

Beyond the Break
By Heather Buchta
352 Pages | Ages 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593096994 | Penguin Workshop
Manhattan Beach native Lovette has two rules in life. One: no surfing. Not after her brother’s accident. Two: absolutely, no dating. And going into her junior year of high school, she’s pretty happy with that arrangement. She has friends, her church youth group, and God to fall back on when things get dicey. But after Jake Evans walks into her life, following these two simple rules gets a lot more complicated.
Jake is the boy from Lovette’s childhood who grew up. Handsome and sweet, he unlocks the part of Lovette that wants nothing more than to surf the waves again. And as their relationship grows, she begins to question what it means to be faithful: to her family, to God, but mostly, to herself. Told with humor and heart, Heather Buchta delivers a sparkling debut that asks the question: Can you fall in love, be a teenager, and also be a good Christian?

Color Me In
By Natasha Diaz
384 Pages | Ages 12+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780525578253 | Delacorte BFYR
Growing up in an affluent suburb of New York City, sixteen-year-old Nevaeh Levitz never thought much about her biracial roots. When her Black mom and Jewish dad split up, she relocates to her mom’s family home in Harlem and is forced to confront her identity for the first time. Nevaeh wants to get to know her extended family, but because she inadvertently passes as white, her cousin thinks she’s too privileged, pampered, and selfish to relate to the injustices African Americans face on a daily basis. In the meantime, Nevaeh’s dad decides that she should have a belated bat mitzvah instead of a sweet sixteen, which guarantees social humiliation at her posh private school. But rather than take a stand, Nevaeh does what she’s always done when life gets complicated: she stays silent. Only when Nevaeh stumbles upon a secret from her mom’s past, finds herself falling in love, and sees firsthand the prejudice her family faces does she begin to realize she has her own voice. And choices. Will she continue to let circumstances dictate her path? Or will she decide once for all who and where she is meant to be?

Imaginary Borders
By Xiuhtezcatl Martinez
Illustrated by Ashley Lukashevsky
64 Pages | Ages 12+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780593094136 | Penguin Workshop
In this personal, moving essay, environmental activist and hip-hop artist Xiuhtezcatl Martinez uses his art and his activism to show that climate change is a human issue that can’t be ignored. Pocket Change Collective is a series of small books with big ideas from today’s leading activists and artists. In this installment, Earth Guardians Youth Director and hip-hop artist Xiuhtezcatl Martinez shows us how his music feeds his environmental activism and vice versa. Martinez visualizes a future that allows us to direct our anger, fear, and passion toward creating change. Because, at the end of the day, we all have a part to play.

Sanctuary
By Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher
320 Pages | Ages 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9781984815712 | Putnam BFYR
It’s 2032, and in this near-future America, all citizens are chipped and everyone is tracked–from buses to grocery stores. It’s almost impossible to survive as an undocumented immigrant, but that’s exactly what sixteen-year-old Vali is doing. She and her family have carved out a stable, happy life in small-town Vermont, but when Vali’s mother’s counterfeit chip starts malfunctioning and the Deportation Forces raid their town, they are forced to flee.
Now on the run, Vali and her family are desperately trying to make it to her tía Luna’s in California, a sanctuary state that is currently being walled off from the rest of the country. But when Vali’s mother is detained before their journey even really begins, Vali must carry on with her younger brother across the country to make it to safety before it’s too late. Gripping and urgent, co-authors Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher have crafted a narrative that is as haunting as it is hopeful in envisioning a future where everyone can find sanctuary.

Suncatcher
By Jose Pimienta
224 Pages | Ages 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593124826 | Random House Graphic
If life wasn’t already hard enough for Beatriz — being a teenager, trying to start a band, and going to school — then she discovers that her grandfather’s soul has been trapped in an old guitar, and that the only way to free him is to play the perfect song . . . his perfect song, a song that he never actually wrote down. She’s determined to save her grandfather, but as music slowly takes over her life, she soon finds herself growing obsessed with his song, and making it absolutely flawless, at the expense of her friendships, her band, and her health. Beatriz won’t let anything stop her, not even her own limitations. Creating a magical song is already a lot of pressure, but Beatriz will have to make some hard choices before it’s too late for her grandfather . . . and for herself. A story filled with music, passion, supernatural secrets, and family, Jose Pimienta’s Suncatcher brings to life a contemporary story of life in Mexicali with a supernatural twist and a lot of music.

The Far Away Brothers
By Lauren Markham
288 Pages | Ages 12+ | Paperback
ISBN 9781984829801 | Delacorte BFYR
Ernesto and Raúl Flores are identical twins, used to being mistaken for each other. As seventeen-year-olds living in rural El Salvador, they are used to thinking that the United States is just a far-off dream. When Ernesto ends up on the wrong side of MS-13, one of El Salvador’s brutal gangs, he flees the country for his own safety. Raúl, fearing that he will be mistaken for his brother, follows close behind. Running from one danger to the next, the Flores twins make the harrowing journey north, only to fall into the hands of immigration authorities. When they finally make it to the custody of their older brother in Oakland, California, the difficulties don’t end. While navigating a new school in a new language, struggling to pay off their mounting coyote debt, and anxiously waiting for their day in immigration court, Raúl and Ernesto are also trying to lead normal teenage lives. With only each other for support, they begin the process of carving out a life for themselves, one full of hope and possibility. Adapted for young adults from the award-winning adult edition, The Far Away Brothers is the inspiring true story of two teens making their way in America, a personal look at US immigration policy, and a powerful account of contemporary immigration.

The Grief Keeper
By Alexandra Villasante
320 Pages | Ages 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780525514022 | Putnam BFYR
Seventeen-year-old Marisol has always dreamed of being American, learning what Americans and the US are like from television and Mrs. Rosen, an elderly expat who had employed Marisol’s mother as a maid. When she pictured an American life for herself, she dreamed of a life like Aimee and Amber’s, the title characters of her favorite American TV show. She never pictured fleeing her home in El Salvador under threat of death and stealing across the US border as “an illegal”, but after her brother is murdered and her younger sister, Gabi’s, life is also placed in equal jeopardy, she has no choice, especially because she knows everything is her fault. If she had never fallen for the charms of a beautiful girl named Liliana, Pablo might still be alive, her mother wouldn’t be in hiding and she and Gabi wouldn’t have been caught crossing the border.
But they have been caught and their asylum request will most certainly be denied. With truly no options remaining, Marisol jumps at an unusual opportunity to stay in the United States. She’s asked to become a grief keeper, taking the grief of another into her own body to save a life. It’s a risky, experimental study, but if it means Marisol can keep her sister safe, she will risk anything. She just never imagined one of the risks would be falling in love, a love that may even be powerful enough to finally help her face her own crushing grief.

We Are Not From Here
By Jenny Torres Sanchez
368 Pages | Ages 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9781984812261 | Philomel BFYR
Pulga has his dreams. Chico has his grief. Pequeña has her pride.
And these three teens have one another. But none of them have illusions about the town they’ve grown up in and the dangers that surround them. Even with the love of family, threats lurk around every corner. And when those threats become all too real, the trio knows they have no choice but to run: from their country, from their families, from their beloved home. Crossing from Guatemala through Mexico, they follow the route of La Bestia, the perilous train system that might deliver them to a better life–if they are lucky enough to survive the journey. With nothing but the bags on their backs and desperation drumming through their hearts, Pulga, Chico, and Pequeña know there is no turning back, despite the unknown that awaits them. And the darkness that seems to follow wherever they go. In this striking portrait of lives torn apart, the plight of migrants at the U.S. southern border is brought to light through poignant, vivid storytelling. An epic journey of danger, resilience, heartache, and hope.

Ages 14+

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter
By Erika L. Sánchez
368 Pages | Ages 14+ | Paperback
ISBN 9781524700515 | Knopf BFYR
Perfect Mexican daughters do not go away to college. And they do not move out of their parents’ house after high school graduation. Perfect Mexican daughters never abandon their family. But Julia is not your perfect Mexican daughter. That was Olga’s role. Then a tragic accident on the busiest street in Chicago leaves Olga dead and Julia left behind to reassemble the shattered pieces of her family. And no one seems to acknowledge that Julia is broken, too. Instead, her mother seems to channel her grief into pointing out every possible way Julia has failed. But it’s not long before Julia discovers that Olga might not have been as perfect as everyone thought. With the help of her best friend, Lorena, and her first love (first everything), Connor, Julia is determined to find out. Was Olga really what she seemed? Or was there more to her sister’s story? And either way, how can Julia even attempt to live up to a seemingly impossible ideal?

Juliet Takes a Breath
By Gabby Rivera
320 Pages | Ages 14+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593108178 | Dial BFYR
Juliet Milagros Palante is a self-proclaimed closeted Puerto Rican baby dyke from the Bronx. Only, she’s not so closeted anymore. Not after coming out to her family the night before flying to Portland, Oregon, to intern with her favorite feminist writer–what’s sure to be a life-changing experience. And when Juliet’s coming out crashes and burns, she’s not sure her mom will ever speak to her again.
But Juliet has a plan–sort of. Her internship with legendary author Harlowe Brisbane, the ultimate authority on feminism, women’s bodies, and other gay-sounding stuff, is sure to help her figure out this whole “Puerto Rican lesbian” thing. Except Harlowe’s white. And not from the Bronx. And she definitely doesn’t have all the answers…In a summer bursting with queer brown dance parties, a sexy fling with a motorcycling librarian, and intense explorations of race and identity, Juliet learns what it means to come out–to the world, to her family, to herself.

Undead Girl Gang
By Lily Anderson
320 Pages | Ages 14+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780451478245 | Razorbill
Meet teenage Wiccan Mila Flores, who truly could not care less what you think about her Doc Martens, her attitude, or her weight because she knows that, no matter what, her BFF Riley is right by her side. So when Riley and Fairmont Academy mean girls June Phelan-Park and Dayton Nesseth die under suspicious circumstances, Mila refuses to believe everyone’s explanation that her BFF was involved in a suicide pact. Instead, armed with a tube of lip gloss and an ancient grimoire, Mila does the unthinkable to uncover the truth: she brings the girls back to life.
Unfortunately, Riley, June, and Dayton have no recollection of their murders. But they do have unfinished business to attend to. Now, with only seven days until the spell wears off and the girls return to their graves, Mila must wrangle the distracted group of undead teens and work fast to discover their murderer…before the killer strikes again.

We Are Here to Stay
By Susan Kuklin
192 Pages | Ages 14+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780763678845 | Candlewick
Meet nine courageous young adults who have lived in the United States with a secret for much of their lives: they are not U.S. citizens. They came from Colombia, Mexico, Ghana, Independent Samoa, and Korea. They came seeking education, fleeing violence, and escaping poverty. All have heartbreaking and hopeful stories about leaving their homelands and starting a new life in America. And all are weary of living in the shadows. We Are Here to Stay is a very different book than it was intended to be when originally slated for a 2017 release, illustrated with Susan Kuklin’s gorgeous full-color portraits. Since the last presidential election and the repeal of DACA, it is no longer safe for these young adults to be identified in photographs or by name. Their photographs have been replaced with empty frames, and their names are represented by first initials. We are honored to publish these enlightening, honest, and brave accounts that encourage open, thoughtful conversation about the complexities of immigration — and the uncertain future of immigrants in America.

When I Am Through With You
By Stephanie Kuehn
304 Pages | Ages 14+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9781101994733 | Dutton BFYR
Ben Gibson is many things, but he’s not sorry and he’s not a liar. He will tell you exactly about what happened on what started as a simple school camping trip in the mountains. About who lived and who died. About who killed and who had the best of intentions. But he’s going to tell you in his own time. Because after what happened on that mountain, time is the one thing he has plenty of. Smart, dark, and twisty, When I Am Through With You will leave readers wondering what it really means to do the right thing.

Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Ahoy me mateys! ‘Tis National Talk Like a Pirate Day and we have a treasure chest full of books that are perfect to share with all the wee pirates in yer life!

Ages 3-7

The Pirate’s Bed
By Nicola Winstanley
Illustrated by Matt James
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781770496163 | Tundra Books
A pirate is sleeping snug in his bed, dreaming pirate dreams, when a great storm comes up at sea. The pirate sleeps on, but his bed is awake and scared of the thunder and the angry waves. Tossed this way and that, the ship finally crashes, sending the pirate to a tropical island and his bed off to sea.
At first, the bed is overjoyed. It’s free from smelly feet, snoring and scratchy wool. It floats in the now peaceful water, meeting friendly gulls and playful dolphins and basking in the sun. But soon the little bed begins to feel like something is missing…
This fanciful tale of a bed lost at sea will capture the hearts of little pirates everywhere and send them off to sleep with dreams of tropical birds, swooshing waves and chattering monkeys.

The Pirates Are Coming!
By James Condon
Illustrated by Matt Hunt
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536212167 | Nosy Crow
A hilarious twist on The Boy Who Cried Wolf! When Tom rings his bell and shouts “PIRATES!” a few too many times — even though there’s no pirate ship — the villagers start to get tired of hiding. But what will happen when the pirates really do show up?
Tom has a very important job: every day he climbs to the top of the hill and watches for pirate ships. When he rings his bell and shouts “PIRATES!” a few too many times — even though there’s no pirate ship — the villagers start to get tired of hiding. But what will happen when the pirates really do show up?

Ages 8-12

Emily Windsnap and Pirate Prince
By Liz Kessler
Illustrated by Erin Farley
288 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536213126 | Candlewick
Traveling home by cruise ship should be a relaxing break after Emily’s latest adventure, but things take a turn when the ship is overtaken by a pirate king and his crew. After the pirates collect everyone’s riches, the pirate king’s eldest son steals something even more valuable: Aaron. So Emily dives into action and joins the younger son’s crew in hopes of saving her boyfriend. But Emily is surprised to find herself not only enjoying the pirate life, but actually bonding with the crew — especially Sam, the pirate king’s son. Between helping Sam unravel riddles to beat his brother to the legendary Trident’s Treasure and making sure that her friends are safe, Emily realizes that she needs to be true to herself. Will she cast aside her mermaid life to join her new friends, or will she find a way to follow her own path?

Peter Pan
By J. M. Barrie
224 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780147508652 | Puffin Books
One starry night, Peter Pan and Tinker Bell lead the three Darling children over the rooftops of London and away to Neverland – the island where lost boys play, mermaids splash and fairies make mischief. But a villainous-looking gang of pirates lurk in the docks, led by the terrifying Captain James Hook. Magic and excitement are in the air, but if Captain Hook has his way, before long, someone will be walking the plank and swimming with the crocodiles…

Pirate Queen: The Legend of Grace O’Malley
By Tony Lee
Illustrated by Sam Hart
128 Pages | Ages 10+ | Paperback
ISBN 9781536200201 | Candlewick
A true daughter of the fearsome O’Malley clan, Grace spent her life wishing to join the fight to keep Henry VIII’s armies from invading her homeland of Ireland — only to be told again and again that the battlefield is no place for a woman. But after English conspirators brutally murder her husband, Grace can no longer stand idly by. Leading men into battle on the high seas, Grace O’Malley quickly gains a formidable reputation as the Pirate Queen of Ireland with her prowess as a sailor and skill with a sword. But her newfound notoriety puts the lives of Grace and her entire family in danger and eventually leads to a confrontation with the most powerful woman in England: Queen Elizabeth I. With a gripping narrative and vivid, action-packed illustrations, the fourth entry in Tony Lee and Sam Hart’s Heroes and Heroines series captures the intensity and passion of one of history’s fiercest female warriors.

Pirateology
By Captain William Lubber
Edited by Dugald A. Steer
32 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780763631437 | Candlewick
Step lively, pirate foes and fanciers! Mysterious booty found inside a long-lost sea chest, hidden for hundreds of years off the coast of Newfoundland, has just been uncovered for your enjoyment. Within these covers is the fascinating eighteenth-century journal of Captain William Lubber, an earnest soul who sailed the seas in search of the vicious female pirate Arabella Drummond. Prepare for a mesmerizing tale of the golden age of piracy — from storm-tossed sailing ships to tantalizing treasure islands, from pirates’ flags and fashions to their wily weapons and wicked ways. An extraordinary find for pirateologists, here is a true and complete companion for the dedicated pirate hunter.

Race to the Bottom of the Sea
By Lindsay Eager
432 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Paperback
ISBN 9780763698775 | Candlewick
When her parents, the great marine scientists Dr. and Dr. Quail, are killed in a tragic accident, eleven-year-old Fidelia Quail is racked by grief — and guilt. It was a submarine of Fidelia’s invention that her parents were in when they died, and it was she who pressed them to stay out longer when the raging Undertow was looming. But Fidelia is forced out of her mourning when she’s kidnapped by Merrick the Monstrous, a pirate whose list of treasons stretches longer than a ribbon eel. Her task? Use her marine know-how to retrieve his treasure, lost on the ocean floor. But as Fidelia and the pirates close in on the prize, with the navy hot on their heels, she realizes that Merrick doesn’t expect to live long enough to enjoy his loot. Could something other than black-hearted greed be driving him? Will Fidelia be able to master the perils of the ocean without her parents — and piece together the mystery of Merrick the Monstrous before it’s too late?

Sea Sirens
By Amy Chu
Illustrated by Janet K. Lee
144 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780451480163 | Viking BFYR
Trot, a Vietnamese American surfer girl, and Cap’n Bill, her cranky one-eyed cat, catch too big a wave and wipe out, sucked down into a magical underwater kingdom where an ancient deep-sea battle rages. The beautiful Sea Siren mermaids are under attack from the Serpent King and his slithery minions–and Trot and her feline become dangerously entangled in this war of tails and fins. This beautiful graphic novel was inspired by The Sea Fairies, L. Frank Baum’s “underwater Wizard of Oz.” It weaves Vietnamese mythology, fantastical ocean creatures, a deep-sea setting, quirky but sympathetic main characters, and fast-paced adventure into an imaginative, world-building story.

Seven Dead Pirates
By Linda Bailey
304 Pages | Ages 8-12 | Paperback
ISBN 9781770498167 | Tundra Books
Lewis Dearborn is a lonely, anxious, “terminally shy” boy of eleven when his great-grandfather passes away and leaves Lewis’s family with his decaying seaside mansion. Lewis is initially delighted with his new bedroom, a secluded tower in a remote part of the house. Then he discovers that it’s already occupied — by the ghosts of seven dead pirates. Worse, the ghosts expect him to help them re-take their ship, now restored and on display in a local museum, so they can make their way to Libertalia, a legendary pirate utopia. The only problem is that this motley crew hasn’t left the house in almost two hundred years and is terrified of going outside. As Lewis warily sets out to assist his new roommates — a raucous, unruly bunch who exhibit a strange delight in thrift-store fashions and a thirst for storybooks — he begins to open himself to the possibilities of friendship, passion and joie de vivre and finds the courage to speak up.

Treasure Island
By Robert Louis Stevenson
336 Pages | Ages 10+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780141321004 | Puffin Books
Following the demise of bloodthirsty buccaneer Captain Flint, young Jim Hawkins finds himself with the key to a fortune. For he has discovered a map that will lead him to the fabled Treasure Island. But a host of villains, wild beasts and deadly savages stand between him and the stash of gold. Not to mention the most infamous pirate ever to sail the high seas . . . With a wonderfully funny introduction by award-winning author Eoin Colfer, Treasure Island is one of the twenty brilliant classic stories being reissued in Puffin Classics in March 2015.

Ages 12+

Seafire
By Natalie C. Parker
400 Pages | Ages 12+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780451478825 | Razorbill
After her family is killed by corrupt warlord Aric Athair and his bloodthirsty army of Bullets, Caledonia Styx is left to chart her own course on the dangerous and deadly seas. She captains her ship, the Mors Navis, with a crew of girls and women just like her, who have lost their families and homes because of Aric and his men. The crew has one mission: stay alive, and take down Aric’s armed and armored fleet. But when Caledonia’s best friend and second-in-command barely survives an attack thanks to help from a Bullet looking to defect, Caledonia finds herself questioning whether to let him join their crew. Is this boy the key to taking down Aric Athair once and for all…or will he threaten everything the women of the Mors Navis have worked for?

The Mermaid, the Witch, and the Sea
By Maggie Tokuda-Hall
368 Pages | Ages 14+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536204315 | Candlewick
The pirate Florian, born Flora, has always done whatever it takes to survive—including sailing under false flag on the Dove as a marauder, thief, and worse. Lady Evelyn Hasegawa, a highborn Imperial daughter, is on board as well—accompanied by her own casket. But Evelyn’s one-way voyage to an arranged marriage in the Floating Islands is interrupted when the captain and crew show their true colors and enslave their wealthy passengers.
Both Florian and Evelyn have lived their lives by the rules, and whims, of others. But when they fall in love, they decide to take fate into their own hands—no matter the cost.
Maggie Tokuda-Hall’s sweeping fantasy debut, full of stolen memories, illicit mermaid’s blood, double agents, and haunting mythical creatures conjures an extraordinary cast of characters and the unforgettable story of a couple striving to stay together in the face of myriad forces wishing to control their identities and destinies.

Grab Your Beary Best Friends, It’s National Teddy Bear Day!

Today is National Teddy Bear Day! We love cuddling up with our bears and a book so here are some beary good suggestions for you to add to your list.

Teddy Bear of the Year
By Vikki VanSickle
Illustrated by Sydney Hanson
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780735263925 | Tundra Books
Ollie is a regular bear with a regular job. He listens to his girl’s stories about her days, he snuggles her to sleep and he is there waiting when she gets home from school. Just your typical teddy bear stuff. So when he is whisked away to the annual teddy bears’ picnic, he feels insignificant compared to the other bears who do daring and daunting things: sleepovers, hospital stays–even a night in the lost and found! Ollie feels even more small and unimportant but he soon learns that it’s not just the big things that matter, it’s the little things too.

Ages 2-5

A Bear is a Bear (except when he’s not)
By Karl Newson
Illustrated by Anuska Allepuz
32 Pages | Ages 2-5 | Board Book
ISBN 9781536212020 | Nosy Crow
When Bear wakes up early from his hibernation, he can’t remember what he is! Is he a bird? Or a moose? Maybe a fox? Just when it seems like Bear won’t be able to figure it out, he finds his cave and decides another nap might help. Will Bear be able to remember what he is when he wakes up again in the spring?

Bear is Awake!
By Hannah E. Harrison
32 Pages | Ages 2-5 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780399186660 | Dial BFYR
Suddenly “awake” in the middle of winter, a “big bear” explores a “cozy cabin,” which Bear of course “enters excitedly.” But the cabin isn’t empty–a little girl lives there. So begins an unlikely friendship and an unexpected adventure as the girl attempts to figure out what a bear is supposed to be doing in the winter. (Hint: It’s not eating pancakes or visiting the library!). With her trademark humor and warmth, Hannah E. Harrison puts her own irresistible spin on the classic alphabet book. The result is a story families will treasure for years to come.

The Best Kind of Bear
By Greg Gormley
Illustrated by David Barrow
32 Pages | Ages 2-5 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536208238 | Nosy Crow
When Nelly asks Bear what kind of bear he is, he isn’t entirely sure how to answer. So off he goes to find out. But none of the different bears he meets on his travels are like him. Grizzly bears don’t have stitching; polar bears don’t have tags attached to their bottoms; spectacled bears are not as soft and bouncy as Bear is; and sun bears never wear bow ties. Disheartened, he returns to Nelly…only to discover what kind of bear he is — her own special bear!

The Boy and the Bear
By Tracey Corderoy
Illustrated by Sarah Massini
32 Pages | Ages 2-5 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536208146 | Nosy Crow
When a lonely little boy receives an invitation to play written on a paper boat, it seems that he has finally found the best friend he’s been longing for. But Bear isn’t quite the playmate the boy had imagined. Bear may not know how to play games, but when he starts to build a tree house, the boy is intrigued and a magical summer begins. As autumn passes and the first winter snowflakes start to fall, the boy is left alone. Only then does he truly realize how much he misses Bear. It’s a happy reunion when Bear finally returns in the spring.

There’s a Bear on My Chair
By Ross Collins
24 Pages | Ages 2-5 | Board Book
ISBN 9781536200140 | Nosy Crow
Poor Mouse! A bear has settled in his favorite chair, and that chair just isn’t big enough for two. Mouse tries all kinds of tactics to move pesky Bear, but nothing works. Once Mouse has gone, Bear gets up and walks home. But what’s that? Is that a mouse in Bear’s house?

Ages 3-7

A Bedtime Yarn
By Nicola Winstanley
Illustrated by Olivia Chin Mueller
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781101918081 | Tundra Books
Frankie is a little bear who has a hard time falling asleep. The dark is scary, and he hates to be alone. So his mother gives him a ball of yarn to hold when he goes to bed, and she keeps the other end in the next room, working it into a surprise for Frankie. Every few nights the yarn color changes, and Frankie dreams in all the colors that he and his mother pick out. Eventually Frankie and his mother create something special–and Frankie learns that he’s always connected to those he loves, even when he’s alone in the dark. A beautiful story of love and crafting, A Bedtime Yarn will appeal to knitters, sleepy little bears and any parents dealing with their child’s fear of the dark.

A Story for Small Bear
By Alice B. McGinty
Illustrated by Richard Jones
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781984852274 | Schwartz & Wade
Autumn is ending and a chilly breeze is drifting in, which can mean only one thing– it’s time to hibernate over the long winter. But before Small Bear does, she’d like for Mama to tell her some stories. Mama agrees, with one condition: all the preparation must get done– no dilly, no dally. So Small Bear tries to be good, venturing off to find sprigs for her winter bed, splishing and splashing in the stream, and climbing up, up, up into the tall forest trees in search of acorns. When she finally returns home, Small Bear snuggles down with Mama in their den. Did she make it back in time? “You did,” Mama answers, and pulls her in close. And then Mama tells the most wonderful tale of a little bear–just like Small Bear–who, while enjoying the world around her, saved just enough time for stories.

A Visitor for Bear
By Bonny Becker
Illustrated by Kady MacDonald Denton
56 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Paperback
ISBN 9780763646110 | Candlewick Press
Bear is quite sure he doesn’t like visitors. He even has a sign. So when a mouse taps on his door one day, Bear tells him to leave. But the mouse — who keeps popping up in the most unexpected places — just won’t go away! Cheery persistence wears down the curmudgeonly Bear in a wry comedy of manners that ends in a most unlikely friendship.

Bear’s Book
By Claire Freedman
Illustrated by Alison Friend
34 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536205718 | Templar
When Bear’s favorite book of stories falls apart, he is determined to write one of his own. He ventures into the forest for inspiration, but writing is harder than he thinks, and he soon discovers that he needs help from his friends. See how Bear transforms their day into a wonderful adventure in this story about creativity and friendship.

Bear Goes Sugaring
By Maxwell Eaton, III
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780823444489 | Neal Porter Books
Every step of the process of making maple syrup is covered in this sweet (but never saccharine) informational picture book by Maxwell Eaton III, the creator of the popular “Truth About” series. It begins with Bear assembling the tools she’ll need for the project, continues with a discussion of the types of maples found in the area and why sugar maples are best for tapping, then on to drilling, tapping, evaporation and at the end of the process, real maple syrup and best of all, PANCAKES!

Bear Needs Help
By Sarah S. Brannen
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780525516507 | Philomel BFYR
A lumbering little polar bear has one shoe untied, and he needs some help! Sadly for him, though, the other animals are all too scared of him: the lemmings, rabbits, and seals all run away as he approaches them for assistance. What’s Bear going to do? Luckily, two plucky birds are more than happy to help out and offer advice — though probably not quite in the way that readers anticipate. In this sweet and funny book about asking for help (and receiving it), expectations are flipped in a simple but clever way.

Nothing Can Frighten a Bear
By Elizabeth Dale
Illustrated by Paula Metcalf
32 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780763696276 | Nosy Crow
Daddy Bear insists he’s the scariest creature in the forest — didn’t you know that nothing can frighten a bear? When a noise in the night awakens Baby Bear, he starts to believe maybe there is something scarier out there than Daddy Bear. The bears set out to investigate. But as the monsters vanish one by one, it looks like Daddy Bear might not be so brave after all! This hilarious, rhyming text about bedtime frights is a perfect read-aloud with a funny refrain.

The Bear Ate Your Sandwich
By Julia Sarcone-Roach
40 Pages | Ages 3-7 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781984852090 | Dragonfly Books
So begins Julia Sarcone-Roach’s delicious tale of a bear, lost in the city, who happens upon an unattended sandwich in the park. The bear’s journey from forest to city and back home again is full of happy accidents, funny encounters, and sensory delights. The story is so engrossing, it’s not until the very end that we begin to suspect this is a TALL tale. The wonderfully told story, spectacular illustrations, and surprise ending make this Julia Sarcone-Roach’s best book to date. You’ll want to share it with your friends (and keep a close eye on your lunch).

Ages 4-8

Elbert, the Curious Clock Tower Bear
By Andrew Prahin
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780525513988 | Putnam BFYR
Unlike the other mechanical bears in the village clock tower, Elbert can’t help but notice all the marvelous things around him–snow falling in winter, fireworks in the night sky, the magnificent stag standing in the cobbled street below. But when Elbert’s growing curiosity threatens to disrupt the orderly life of the clock tower, the other bears decide Elbert must go. What’s a small bear with a big curiosity to do? Explore, of course! And maybe even find a way to spread his inquisitive spirit. Here’s the perfect book for readers young and old who believe that staying curious is more important than following the rules.

I Want My Hat Back
By Jon Klassen
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780763655983 | Candlewick Press
The bear’s hat is gone, and he wants it back. Patiently and politely, he asks the animals he comes across, one by one, whether they have seen it. Each animal says no, some more elaborately than others. But just as the bear begins to despond, a deer comes by and asks a simple question that sparks the bear’s memory and renews his search with a vengeance. Told completely in dialogue, this delicious take on the classic repetitive tale plays out in sly illustrations laced with visual humor and winks at the reader with a wry irreverence that will have kids of all ages thrilled to be in on the joke.

The Bear in My Family
By Maya Tatsukawa
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780525555827 | Dial BFYR
“I live with a bear,” the story’s young narrator declares. The bear is loud, messy, uncouth, and very strong (too strong!). For some reason, his parents treat the bear like family, despite his protests. Why can’t they see? Then he runs into some bullies on the playground. When the bear ROOAARS with all her might and scares them away, he realizes that there are advantages to having a bear in the family. In a delightful twist, the narrator’s older sister (the bear) appears, telling him that she is NOT a bear. But if she is, HE is too–because two bears are even better than one!

The Bear Must Go On
By Dev Petty
Illustrated by Brandon Todd
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781984837479 | Philomel BFYR
Bear and his woodland friends are putting on a show, and there are lots of plans to be made. Their curtains need sequins! Their hats must be very, very tall! And their tickets have to be shiny! (No one will come if the tickets are dull.). Behind the scenes, shy Bear takes notes on every detail until his paws ache. But at least he won’t have to go on stage. He could NEVER do that!. . . Or could he? In this uproarious tale of theatrical mishaps told with hilariously endearing art, four woodland friends bring down the house–and have plenty of fun along the way.

The Invisible Bear
By Cécile Metzger
40 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780735266872 | Tundra Books
A bear sits in his quiet, colorless home in a forgotten place. He feels invisible; no one comes to see him, and he spends his days alone. Then someone moves in next door. Madame Odette is sound and sunshine, and at first, the bear isn’t sure about this colorful new neighbor. But through an act of kindness, the bear and the Madame Odette meet, and as time goes by, they become friends. And in the end, they are both forever changed by the gifts they bring each other.

All Ages

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt
By Michael Rosen
Illustrated by Helen Oxenbury
40 Pages | All Ages | Paperback
ISBN 9780744523232 | Candlewick Press
Go on a bear hunt and do the actions with this award-winning picture book classic. Follow and join in the family’s excitement as they wade through the grass, splash through the river and squelch through the mud in search of a bear. What a surprise awaits them in the cave on the other side of the dark forest.

Putting the YA in FRIYAY: Adding To Your List of Classics

We love reading classics as much as the next person but there are a whole bunch of recent YA novels that we could easily swap in for a fresh perspective. We’ve made some suggestions below but we also recommend checking out the Complementing the Classics brochure put together by Penguin Classroom.

In addition to Lord of the Flies, read:

Wilder Girls
By Rory Power
400 Pages | 14+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780525645610 | Delacorte BFYR
This fresh debut about three best friends living in quarantine at their island boarding school is a mind-bending novel unlike anything you’ve read before. But when Byatt goes missing, Hetty will do anything to find her, even if it means breaking quarantine and braving the horrors that lie beyond the fence.

In addition to The Outsiders, read:

Patron Saints of Nothing
By Randy Ribay
352 Pages | 14+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780525554929 | Kokila
Jay plans to spend the last semester of his senior year playing video games before heading to university in the fall. But when he discovers that his Filipino cousin Jun was murdered as part of President Duterte’s war on drugs, and no one in the family wants to talk about what happened, Jay travels to the Philippines to learn the truth.

In addition to The Great Gatsby, read:

A Sky Painted Gold
By Laura Wood
384 Pages | 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593127223 | Random House BFYR
It is the summer of 1929 and budding writer Lou meets the Cardew siblings: the bubbly Caitlin and her handsome brother, Robert. Lou is swept into their glittering whirlwind of moonlit parties, unrivaled glamour, and whispered secrets. As she falls deeper into the world of high society, Lou must find a way to stay true to herself…and her heart.

In addition to Little Women, read:

Jo & Laurie
By Margaret Stohl and Melissa De La Cruz
384 Pages | 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9781984812018 | Putnam BFYR
1869, Concord, Massachusetts: After the publication of her first novel, Jo March goes to New York with her dear friend Laurie for a week of inspiration. But Laurie has romance on his mind, and despite her growing feelings, Jo turns him down. Until Laurie comes home with a girlfriend…will Jo risk losing the love of her life forever?

In addition to Anne of Green Gables, read:

Maud: A Novel Inspired by the Life of L.M Montgomery
By Melanie J. Fishbane
400 Pages | 12+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780143191261 | Penguin Teen Canada
Lucy Maud Montgomery has a dream: to go to college and become a writer. But living with her grandparents on Prince Edward Island, she worries that this dream will never come true. Life changes for Maud when she goes out West to live with her father until she discovers her stepmother’s plans for her which threat Maud’s future happiness.

In addition to Dracula, read:

The Beautiful
By Renée Ahdieh
448 Pages | 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9781524738174 | Putnam BFYR
In 1872, New Orleans is a city ruled by the dead. For Celine, it’s a safe haven – until she becomes embroiled in the city’s glitzy underworld, after catching the eye of the group’s enigmatic leader, Sébastien. When a body is found in Sébastien’s lair, Celine battles her attraction and suspicions about his guilt along with the shame of her own secret.

In addition to The Scarlet Letter, read:

He Must Like You
By Danielle Younge-Ullman
336 Pages | 14+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780735265691 | Penguin Teen Canada
After dumping a pitcher of sangria on an overly handsy customer, Libby has to navigate the fallout of her outburst, plus deal with her rage at the guys who’ve screwed up her life – and her increasing crush on the one guy who truly gets her. A story about consent, rage, and revenge, and the potential we all have to be better.

In addition to The Giver, read:

Sanctuary
By Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher
320 Pages | 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9781984815712 | Putnam BFYR
It’s 2032, and in this near-future America, all citizens are chipped and everyone is tracked. It’s almost impossible to survive as an undocumented immigrant, but that’s exactly what sixteen-year-old Vali is doing. Then Vali’s mother’s counterfeit chip starts malfunctioning and the Deportation Forces raid their town, forcing them to flee.

Putting the YA in FRIYAY: YA Graphic Novels

We’re low-key loving the trend of YA graphic novels (who doesn’t love looking at pictures while they’re reading?) so we rounded up a few of our recent faves – including a #Penguin10 title that we can’t wait to shout about!

Dancing at the Pity Party
By Tyler Feder
208 Pages | 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780525553021 | Dial BFYR
Part poignant cancer memoir and part humorous reflection on a motherless life, this debut graphic novel is extraordinarily comforting and engaging. From before her mother’s first oncology appointment through the stages of her cancer to the funeral, sitting shiva, and afterward, when she must try to make sense of her life as a motherless daughter, Tyler Feder tells her story in this graphic novel that is full of piercing–but also often funny–details. She shares the important post-death firsts, such as celebrating holidays without her mom, the utter despair of cleaning out her mom’s closet, ending old traditions and starting new ones, and the sting of having the “I’ve got to tell Mom about this” instinct and not being able to act on it. This memoir, bracingly candid and sweetly humorous, is for anyone struggling with loss who just wants someone to get it.

Suncatcher
By Jose Pimiento
224 Pages | 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593124826 | Random House Graphic
If life wasn’t already hard enough for Beatriz — being a teenager, trying to start a band, and going to school — then she discovers that her grandfather’s soul has been trapped in an old guitar, and that the only way to free him is to play the perfect song . . . his perfect song, a song that he never actually wrote down. She’s determined to save her grandfather, but as music slowly takes over her life, she soon finds herself growing obsessed with his song, and making it absolutely flawless, at the expense of her friendships, her band, and her health. Beatriz won’t let anything stop her, not even her own limitations. Creating a magical song is already a lot of pressure, but Beatriz will have to make some hard choices before it’s too late for her grandfather . . . and for herself. A story filled with music, passion, supernatural secrets, and family, Jose Pimienta’s Suncatcher brings to life a contemporary story of life in Mexicali with a supernatural twist and a lot of music.

The Magic Fish
By Trung Le Nguyen
256 Pages | Ages 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593125298 | Random House Graphic
Real life isn’t a fairytale. But Tiến still enjoys reading his favorite stories with his parents from the books he borrows from the local library. It’s hard enough trying to communicate with your parents as a kid, but for Tiến, he doesn’t even have the right words because his parents are struggling with their English. Is there a Vietnamese word for what he’s going through? Is there a way to tell them he’s gay? A beautifully illustrated story by Trung Le Nguyen that follows a young boy as he tries to navigate life through fairytales, an instant classic that shows us how we are all connected.

The Montague Twins: The Witch’s Hand
By Nathan Page
Illustrated by Drew Shannon
352 Pages | 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780525646761 | Knopf BFYR
Pete and Alastair Montague are just a couple of mystery-solving twins, living an ordinary life. Or so they thought. After a strange storm erupts on a visit to the beach, they discover there is more to their detective skills than they had thought. Their guardian, David Faber, a once prominent professor, has been keeping secrets about their parents and what the boys are truly capable of. At the same time, three girls go missing after casting a mysterious spell, which sets in motion a chain of events that takes their small town down an unexpected path. With the help of David’s daughter, Charlie, they discover there are forces at work that they never could have imagined, which will impact their lives forever. An exciting new graphic novel from innovative creators Nathan Page and Drew Shannon that is at once timely and thrilling.

The Oracle Code
By Marieke Nijkamp
Illustrated by Manuel Preitano
208 Pages | 12-14 | Paperback
ISBN 9781401290665 | DC Comics
After a gunshot leaves her paralyzed below the waist, Barbara Gordon undergoes physical and mental rehabilitation at the Arkham Center for Independence. She must adapt to a new normal, but she cannot shake the feeling that something is dangerously amiss. Strange sounds escape at night while patients start to go missing. Is this suspicion simply a result of her trauma? Or does Barbara actually hear voices coming from the center’s labyrinthine hallways? It’s up to her to put the pieces together to solve the mysteries behind the walls. In The Oracle Code, universal truths cannot be escaped, and Barbara Gordon must battle the phantoms of her past before they consume her future.

When Stars Are Scattered
By Victoria Jamieson and Omar Mohamed
Illustrated by Victoria Jamieson and Iman Geddy
264  Pages | 9-12 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780525553915 | Dial BFYR
Omar and his younger brother, Hassan, have spent most of their lives in Dadaab, a refugee camp in Kenya. Life is hard there: never enough food, achingly dull, and without access to the medical care Omar knows his nonverbal brother needs. So when Omar has the opportunity to go to school, he knows it might be a chance to change their future . . . but it would also mean leaving his brother, the only family member he has left, every day. Heartbreak, hope, and gentle humor exist together in this graphic novel about a childhood spent waiting, and a young man who is able to create a sense of family and home in the most difficult of settings. It’s an intimate, important, unforgettable look at the day-to-day life of a refugee, as told to New York Times Bestselling author/artist Victoria Jamieson by Omar Mohamed, the Somali man who lived the story.

Witchlight
By Jessi Zabarsky
208 Pages | 12+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593124185 | Random House Graphic
Lelek is a witch. That’s all Sanja knows when she meets Lelek in the marketplace. But Lelek is hiding something — and as her life begins to intersect with Sanja’s, all that she’s kept to herself starts to come to light. Secrets, friendship, and magic all come together as Lelek gets closer and closer to uncovering the truth about her past… Witchlight is a wonderful adventure filled with friendship, family, falling in love, and dealing with the hardest bits of your past all along the way.

Wonder Woman: Tempest Tossed
By Laurie Halse Anderson
Illustrated by Leila Del Duca
208 Pages | 14+ | Paperback
ISBN 9781401286453 | DC Comics
Princess Diana of Themyscira believes that her 16th birthday will be one of new beginnings–namely, acceptance into the warrior tribe of the Amazons. But her birthday celebrations are cut short when rafts carrying refugees break through the barrier that separates her island home from the outside world. When Diana defies the Amazons to try to bring the outsiders to safety, she finds herself swept away by the stormy sea. Cut off from everything she’s ever known, Diana herself becomes a refugee in an unfamiliar land. Now Diana must survive in the world beyond Themyscira for the first time–a world that is filled with danger and injustice unlike anything she’s ever experienced. With new battles to be fought and new friends to be made, she must redefine what it means to belong, to be an Amazon, and to make a difference. Wonder Woman: Tempest Tossed is a story about growing into your strength, fighting for justice, and finding home.

Wonder Woman: Warbringer
By Leigh Bardugo
Illustrated by Kit Seaton
Adapted by Louise Simonson
208 Pages | 12+ | Paperback
ISBN 9781401282554 | DC Comics
Diana longs to prove herself to her legendary warrior sisters. But when the opportunity finally comes, she throws away her chance at glory and breaks Amazon law–risking exile–to save a mere mortal. Even worse, Alia Keralis is no ordinary girl and with this single brave act, Diana may have doomed the world. Alia just wanted to escape her overprotective brother with a semester at sea. She doesn’t know she is being hunted. When a bomb detonates aboard her ship, Alia is rescued by a mysterious girl of extraordinary strength and forced to confront a horrible truth: Alia is a Warbringer–a direct descendant of the infamous Helen of Troy, fated to bring about an age of bloodshed and misery. Together, Diana and Alia will face an army of enemies–mortal and divine–determined to either destroy or possess the Warbringer. If they have any hope of saving both their worlds, they will have to stand side by side against the tide of war.