Spring 2018 Children’s Sneak Previews


Abrams fuels up with The Princess and the Pit Stop by Tom Angleberger, illus. by Dan Santat, a mash-up of auto racing and fractured fairytale favorites; They Say Blue by Jillian Tamaki, following a girl who illuminates where she finds colors in the physical world and the world beyond what she can see; The 5 O’Clock Band by Troy Andrews, illus. by Bryan Collier, featuring a scrappy young musician who learns what it means to be an artist and a band leader in his hometown of New Orleans; and The Faithful Spy by John Hendrix, the story of German pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer who opposed the Nazis and was part of a failed plot to assassinate Hitler.


Amulet steps into spring with Big Foot Little Foot by Ellen Potter, focused on a young Sasquatch and a curious boy who become best friends; Munmun by Jesse Andrews, set in a near-future world where every person’s physical size is directly proportionate to their wealth; Ginger Kid: Mostly True Tales from a Former Nerd by Steve Hofstetter, in which this comedian walks readers through awkward early dating, family turbulence, and revenge of the bullied nerds; Like Love by Leah Konen, which finds Mabel using the memory-viewing virtual reality tech at her job to snoop on her coworker/potential love interest’s memories; and Jack and the Geniuses: Lost in the Jungle by Bill Nye and Greg Mone, illus. by Nick Iluzada, which follows Jack and his two genius foster siblings to the Amazon to find a famed scientist and inventor who’s gone missing.


Algonquin pulls out its binoculars for A Possibility of Whales by Karen Rivers, about a girl who comes to a realization about some of the biggest challenges in her life during a whale-watching trip; The Crooked Castle: Carmer and Grit Book #2 by Sarah Jean Horowitz, in which magician and inventor Carmer and faerie princess Grit investigate a magical flying circus; She’s Lost Control by Adele Griffin, the story of Lizzy’s senior year in the 1980s, when she discovers the shocking secrets her boyfriend and her new best friend have kept from her; and Very Short Book Reports by Lisa Brown, showcasing comic-book parodies of such classics as Moby Dick, The Handmaid’s Tale, and The Hunger Games.


Barefoot glides into the season with Wild Swans, retold by Xanthe Gresham, illus. by Charlotte Gastaut, a feminist spin on the Andersen fairy tale that finds a princess rescuing her brothers from an evil queen’s spell that turned them into swans; and Just Like Brothers by Elizabeth Baguley, illus. by Aurélie Blanz, featuring a boy and a wolf cub who become friends, despite their mothers’ warnings.


Candlewick shapes up its spring list with Square by Mac Barnett, illus. by Jon Klassen, following the adventures of Square as he moves a pile of blocks and earns the admiration of his friend Circle; Alma by Juana Martinez-Neal, about a girl who learns the colorful family namesakes behind the long name she’s been given; Rescue and Jessica: A True Story of Friendship by Jessica Kensky and Patrick Downes, illus. by Scott Magoon, featuring a service dog named Rescue and the girl he helps; Price Guide to the Occult by Leslye Walton, in which 17-year-old Nor, born into a family of cursed witches, sees darkness ahead when a mysterious spell book comes her way; and Jabberwalking by Juan Felipe Herrera, exploring the U.S. Poet Laureate’s writing process and how he is always a poet on the move thanks to walking.


Disney-Hyperion checks the Doppler radar for Storm Chasers by Ginger Zee, exploring the decisions Helicity makes as a dangerous storm approaches; The Trials of Apollo, Book Three: The Burning Maze by Rick Riordan, more challenges for awkward mortal teen Lester, who used to be the glorious god Apollo; Isle of the Lost #4: A Descendants Novel by Melissa de la Cruz, a tie-in to Descendants #2; Willa of the Wood by Robert Beatty, which pits the nightspirits like 12-year-old Willa against the rich and powerful humans called “day folk”; and We Don’t Eat Our Classmates by Ryan T. Higgins, about a dinosaur’s challenges in making human friends, who happen to be delicious.


HarperCollins freshens up with Magic Breath by Nick Ortner, illus. by Michelle Polizzi, offering young readers a guide to deep breathing; Bloom: A Story of Elsa Schiaparelli by Kyo Maclear, illus. by Julie Morstad, a picture book biography of the fashion designer who invented the color shocking pink; Little Ree #2 by Ree Drummond, illus. by Jacqueline Rogers, featuring country girl Little Ree and her friend Hyacinth baking a pie; Gone to Drift by Diana McCaulay, the tale of a 10-year-old boy determined to rescue his fisherman grandfather who is lost at sea; Maggie and Abby’s Neverending Pillow Fort by Will Taylor, first in a magical realism duology in which two friends discover a portal through their living room pillow fort; Courage by B.A. Binns, chronicling the adjustments of T’Shawn and his family when his brother returns home from prison; Endling #1: The Last by Katherine Applegate, launching a fantasy trilogy about a dog-like animal on a quest to discover if he truly is the last of his kind; and Where the Watermelons Grow by Cindy Baldwin, a debut middle-grade novel in which a girl tries to help her mother deal with mental illness.


Lee & Low sharpens its pencils for Midnight Teacher: Lilly Ann Granderson and Her Secret School by Janet Halfmann, illus. by London Ladd, a historical fiction story about Lilly Ann Granderson, an African-American teacher who risked her life to teach others during slavery; I Remember: Poems and Pictures of Heritage edited by Lee Bennett Hopkins, a collection of original poems and illustrations, in which artists of diverse backgrounds remember their unique childhoods growing up in the United States and reflect on their ancestry, traditions, and beliefs; and Every Month is a New Year by Marilyn Singer, illus. by Susan L. Roth, a celebration of New Years around the world.

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