Middle Grade 2020 Holiday Gift Guide

2020 Middle Grade Holiday Gift Guide

Middle Grade 2020 Holiday Gift Guide

I don’t think I’ve ever done this before, but this year I wanted to post a giant list of recommended titles for the holiday season. Whether you’re looking for stories to fill the weeks at home between school days or filling your shopping bag with gifts for those you love, these titles are among my favorites and the ones I most highly recommend from books published this year. I’ve divided this holiday gift guide into sections so hopefully the list is less overwhelming. If I’ve posted a review of the book, you’ll see a link to next to the publication date.

Without further ado, here are the books I recommend for the 8-12 year old reader in your life this … Continue reading

Review: The Camelot Betrayal by Kiersten White

The Camelot Betrayal by Kiersten White

The Camelot Betrayal (Camelot Rising #2)
Kiersten White
Delacorte Press
Published November 10, 2020

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Indiebound | Goodreads

About The Camelot Betrayal

EVERYTHING IS AS IT SHOULD BE IN CAMELOT: King Arthur is expanding his kingdom’s influence with Queen Guinevere at his side. Yet every night, dreams of darkness and unknowable power plague her.

Guinevere might have accepted her role, but she still cannot find a place for herself in all of it. The closer she gets to Brangien, pining for her lost love Isolde, Lancelot, fighting to prove her worth as Queen’s knight, and Arthur, everything to everyone and thus … Continue reading

Review: Malcolm and Me by Robin Farmer

Malcolm and Me by Robin Farmer

Malcolm and Me
Robin Farmer
SparkPress
Published November 17, 2020

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Indiebound | Goodreads

About Malcolm and Me

Philly native Roberta Forest is a precocious rebel with the soul of a poet. The thirteen-year-old is young, gifted, black, and Catholic—although she’s uncertain about the Catholic part after she calls Thomas Jefferson a hypocrite for enslaving people and her nun responds with a racist insult. Their ensuing fight makes Roberta question God and the important adults in her life, all of whom seem to see truth as gray when Roberta believes it’s … Continue reading

Review: The Guinevere Deception by Kiersten White

The Guinevere Deception by Kiersten White

The Guinevere Deception (Camelot Rising #1)
Kiersten White
Delacorte Press
Published November 5, 2019

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Indiebound | Goodreads

About The Guinevere Deception

From New York Times bestselling author Kiersten White comes a new fantasy series reimagining the Arthurian legend, set in the magical world of Camelot.

There was nothing in the world as magical and terrifying as a girl.

Princess Guinevere has come to Camelot to wed a stranger: the charismatic King Arthur. With magic clawing at the kingdom’s borders, the great wizard Merlin conjured a solution–send in Guinevere to be Arthur’s wife . . … Continue reading

Review: Into the Silent Land by Martin Laird

Into the Silent Land by Martin Laird

Into the Silent Land: A Guide to the Christian Practice of Contemplative Prayer
Martin Laird
Oxford University Press
Published July 1, 2006

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Indiebound | Goodreads

About Into the Silent Land

Sitting in stillness, the practice of meditation, and the cultivation of awareness are commonly thought to be the preserves of Hindus and Buddhists. Martin Laird shows that the Christian tradition of contemplation has its own refined teachings on using a prayer word to focus the mind, working with the breath to cultivate stillness, and the practice of inner vigilance or awareness. But this … Continue reading

Author Q&A with Hope Bolinger and Alyssa Roat

Author Q&A Hope Bolinger Alyssa Roat

Author Q&A with Hope Bolinger and Alyssa Roat

Every now and again I hear about just the right book for the right moment, and I feel like DEAR HERO has been one of those. I definitely needed a snarky, silly, fun book to read this month! So when I got the chance to ask the authors some questions about the story and the process of writing it, of course I jumped at the chance.

First, here’s a little bit about the book in case you aren’t familiar.

Dear Hero by Hope Bolinger

Dear Hero
Hope Bolinger and Alyssa Roat
INtense Publications
Published September 28, 2020

Amazon Continue reading

Most-Anticipated Books Out November 2020

8 Most-Anticipated YA Books Coming November 2020

Most-Anticipated YA Books Coming This Month

Whether you’re looking for a book to escape reality, make you laugh out loud, or reimagine a familiar story, you’re in for a great month, because there are some fantastic YA books coming out this November. Here are some of the ones I am most excited to read.

Instant Karma by Marissa Meyer

Instant Karma by Marissa Meyer

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Continue reading

Review: Aster’s Good, Right Things by Kate Gordon

Aster's Good Right Things by Kate Gordon

Aster’s Good, Right Things
Kate Gordon
Riveted Press
Published November 1, 2020

Book Depository | Goodreads

About Aster’s Good, Right Things

“I can’t let go of them – the good, right things—because if I do I’ll turn into a cloud and I’ll float away, and a storm will come and blow me to nothing.”

Eleven-year-old Aster attends a school for gifted kids, but she doesn’t think she’s special at all. If she was, her mother wouldn’t have left. Each day Aster must do a good, right thing—a challenge she sets herself, to make someone else’s life better. Nobody can know about her ‘things’, because then they won’t count. And if she doesn’t do them, she’s sure everything will go wrong. … Continue reading

Review: Mary Underwater by Shannon Doleski

Mary Underwater by Shannon Doleski

Mary Underwater
Shannon Doleski
Amulet
Published April 7, 2020

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Indiebound | Goodreads

About Mary Underwater

Mary Murphy feels like she’s drowning. Her violent father is home from prison, and the social worker is suspicious of her new bruises. An aunt she’s never met keeps calling. And if she can’t get a good grade on her science project, she’ll fail her favorite class.

But Mary doesn’t want to be a victim anymore. She has a plan: build a real submarine, like the model she’s been making with Kip Dwyer, the secretly sweet class clown.

Gaining courage from her heroine, Joan of Arc, Mary vows … Continue reading

Author Q&A with Katherine Barger

Author Q&A with Katherine Barger

Author Q&A with Katherine Barger

A few weeks ago, I got an email about an intriguing book loosely inspired by the Bible stories of Daniel and Nehemiah in a contemporary setting. I’m super fascinated by this concept, so I jumped at the chance to interview Katherine Barger to learn more. I’m sharing that Q&A here today!

First, here’s a little bit about the book, FORTUNE’S FALL.

Fortune's Fall by Katherine Barger

Fortune’s Fall
Katherine Barger
Anaiah Press
Published November 3, 2020

Amazon | Goodreads

While her classmates prepare for elite careers across America, Nyssa Ardelone trains for her secret job … Continue reading

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