Book News by Trent Shaw

Welcome to the newest edition of Kids Only. Once again, I’ve seen some really nice non-fiction titles coming in lately so I thought I’d highlight some of the most interesting here.

If you’re already making a list of titles to promote for the holidays, make sure to add Animalium (9780763675080, Big Picture [...]

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Beginning Readers

Leroy Ninker Saddles Up

Kate DiCamillo
(Candlewick Press, $12.99, HC, 9780763663391)

The always reliable Kate DiCamillo offers up the first in a new beginning reader series, Leroy Ninker Saddles Up, a spin-off from her bestselling Mercy Watson books. Leroy Ninker has a hat, a lasso, and boots. What he doesn’t have is a horse — until he meets Maybelline, that is, and then it’s love at first sight. Maybelline loves spaghetti and sweet nothings, and she loves Leroy, too. But when Leroy forgets the third and final rule of caring for Maybelline, disaster ensues. Can Leroy wrestle fate to the ground, rescue the horse of his heart, and lasso loneliness for good? The text is a bit more advanced than in the Mercy Watson books, making this a perfect stepping stone for fans of that series. Once again the series is illustrated by the great Chris Van Dusen, although I'm a bit disappointed the art isn't in color this time. FICTION/Animals-Horses/Humorous Stories/Social Issues-Friendship

Graphic Novels & Manga

Amulet, Book 6: Escape From Lucien

Kazu Kibuishi
(Scholastic Graphix, $12.99, TP, 9780545433150)

Kazu Kibuishi continues his bestselling Amulet series with the brand-new sixth volume, Escape From Lucien. Emily, Navin, and their friends continue to battle the Elf King in hopes of destroying him forever, but one of his most loyal followers, Max, isn't making it easy for them. The crew journeys to Lucien, a city that's been ravaged by the war. Emily has more enemies there than she realizes - and it'll take everything she's got to get herself and her friends out of the city alive. If you're interested in what all of the fuss is about, check out this great article from bestselling author Cory Doctorow, written a few months back before this sixth volume was released. Our stock disappeared quickly on this one but more should be here any day. FICTION/Comics & Graphic Novels-General/Action & Adventure/Science Fiction & Fantasy Rated T MIDDLE READERS

Middle Readers

Nuts to You

Lynne Rae Perkins
(Greenwillow Books, $16.99, HC, 9780060092757)

Newbery Medalist Lynne Rae Perkins (Criss Cross) is just out with Nuts to You. Young squirrels Jed, TsTs, and Chai are the very best of friends. So when Jed is snatched up by a hawk and carried away to another realm, TsTs and Chai resolve to go after him. Mysteriously, the hawk has dropped him. They saw it. Jed could be alive. New communities are discovered, new friends made, huge danger is encountered (both man-made and of the fox and bobcat variety) and the mysteries of squirrel culture are revealed. It turns out that squirrels are steadfast and fun-loving. It turns out they adore peanut butter. It turns out they love games and really good stories. And nuts. The text is punctuated with narrator asides and footnotes that further enhance the tale, and Perkins' own illustrations appear heavily throughout. You can read an excerpt here. FICTION/Animals-Squirrels/Action & Adventure-Survival Stories/Social Issues-Friendship

Also New in Middle Readers:

Picture Books


Aaron Becker
(Candlewick Press, $15.99, HC, 9780763665951)

On the heels of last year's Caldcott Honor book, Journey, comes Quest, the next chapter in Aaron Becker's stunning wordless fantasy. A king emerges from a hidden door in a city park, startling two children sheltering from the rain. No sooner does he push a map and some strange objects into their hands than he is captured by hostile forces that whisk him back through the enchanted door. Just like that, the children are caught up in a quest to rescue the king and his kingdom from darkness, while illuminating the farthest reaches of their imagination. Colored markers in hand, they make their own way through the portal, under the sea, through a tropical paradise, over a perilous bridge, and high in the air with the help of a winged friend. Journey was both a bookseller and critical favorite last year, as well as one of the big children's titles of the holiday season, so this should follow suit. Watch the very cool book trailer here and, because I always love to see an artist at work, check out this short video about the making of Journey. FICTION/Fantasy & Magic/Imagination & Play/Concepts-Colors

Also New in Picture Books:

Pre School

Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site

Sherri Duskey Rinker, Illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld
(Chronicle Books, $12.99, Board Book, 9781452128245)

The #1 New York Times bestselling team behind Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site returns with the sounds of a construction site as it powers down and says goodnight! Lightly abridged and revised from the original text, this playful board book includes a sound bar with five sounds - crunch, vroom, beep, yawn, snore - that bring interactive fun to the setting of the hit picture book. You can listen to the sounds here. FICTION/Transportation-Cars & Trucks/Bedtime & Dreams/Concepts-Sounds/Interactive Adventures

Also New in Pre School:

Young Adult

The Infinite Sea

Rick Yancey
(Putnam, $18.99, HC, 9780399162428)

The Infinite Sea, the sequel to last year's bestselling The Fifth Wave and one of the most anticipated YA books this fall, is finally on sale next Tuesday. Cassie Sullivan and her companions lived through the Others’ four waves of destruction. Now, with the human race nearly exterminated and the 5th Wave rolling across the landscape, they face a choice: brace for winter and hope for Evan Walker’s return, or set out in search of other survivors before the enemy closes in. Because the next attack is more than possible — it’s inevitable. No one can anticipate the depths to which the Others will sink, nor the heights to which humanity will rise, in the ultimate battle between life and death, hope and despair, love and hate. Make sure you still have copies of The Fifth Wave (9780399162411, Putnam, $18.99, HC) which has, unfortunately, not yet released in paperback. FICTION/Action & Adventure/Science Fiction/Love & Romance

Also New in Young Adult: