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Staff Suggestions — Kids 8-12 Years

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Starfish Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781984814500
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Nancy Paulsen Books - March 9th, 2021

This is the kind of book that will shatter your heart and still find a way to piece it back together again. Written in verse, this story will hit close to home for anyone who feels like they need to hide parts of who they are to fit in. Ellie lives by her list of "Fat Girl Rules," but she's started to realize they may be doing more harm than good. Along with allies new and old, Ellie decides it's time she takes up all the space she needs. I guarantee this book will make you laugh and cry, all while you root for Ellie every step of the way.

— Becky


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The Hatmakers Cover Image
By Tamzin Merchant, Paola Escobar (Illustrator)
$18.95
ISBN: 9781324016038
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Norton Young Readers - February 2nd, 2021

A fanciful, whimsical adventure set in a London that has magic. Join Cordelia and best friend Goose as they try to prevent a war with France, save the King and rescue Cordelia’s father. Gorgeous illustrations from Paola Escobar complete this madcap story.

— Susan


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The Mysterious Disappearance of Aidan S. (as told to his brother) Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781984848598
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Knopf Books for Young Readers - February 2nd, 2021

What a fantastic premise! This realistic fiction novel explores the complicated relationship of 2 brothers, and unintended consequences, and left me with the question: what would you do? Fantastic writing grabbed me on the first page.

— Jamie


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Explorer Academy: The Tiger's Nest (Book 5) Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781426338625
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Under the Stars - January 5th, 2021

This is the latest in a fantastic series featuring near-future technology, James Bond-type thrilling scenes, and diverse characters. I love this series which should be read in order. — Jamie


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Unplugged Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062798893
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Balzer + Bray - January 5th, 2021

Gordon Korman has created, yet again, a true treasure for middle grade readers. Follow Jett, the spoiled son of a billionaire, as he goes from tech city to surviving in nature. With his trademark humor laced throughout this new story, Korman has delivered an eco-centric tale about getting back to our roots.

— Lindsay A.


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Kitchen Cabinet Science Projects: Fifty Amazing Science Experiments to Make with Everyday Ingredients Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780593097540
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Workshop - January 5th, 2021

A fun book for anyone who loves messing around with crazy-fun experiments! From the edible ones to levitating objects, I can’t wait to try them out myself.

— Patrick


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Double the Danger and Zero Zucchini Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781534467651
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Margaret K. McElderry Books - September 22nd, 2020

I strongly recommend this laugh-out-loud book that kept me turning pages, even though I had to stop reading because I was laughing so hard. Great details, great characters, hilarious plot; I can’t wait for Uhrig’s next book!

— Jamie


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Eva Evergreen, Semi-Magical Witch Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780316493888
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - August 4th, 2020

Does it ever feel like you are only kind of good at things - while others are way better? Eva Evergreen is only a semi-magical witch - and in her fantastical world, this doesn’t feel like enough. Could there be more to magic? On her quest to become a novice witch, Eva discovers having confidence, friendships, and helping others is what fuels her power! There’s definitely enough enchantment in this book to sweep you away!

— Tonya


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A Wolf for a Spell Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780593121658
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Knopf Books for Young Readers - December 1st, 2020

Calling all Baba Yaga fans – and if you’re not a fan, you will be after reading this. Our favorite “scary” witch learns some new tricks from a young wolf while collaborating to right an old wrong and save the Dark Wood where they both reside. Intricately woven, like the best of spells, Sutton has brought an age-old tale into the light.

— Terri


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Cleo Porter and the Body Electric Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781250236555
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Feiwel & Friends - October 6th, 2020

Whoa! Talk about a timely book. One that could even be deemed a cautionary tale, but not in a heavy dark, manner. It’s also one I didn’t put down because at the end of every chapter I had questions! Jake Burt knows how to string the reader along--I wanted to know what would happen next! And how I love quirky Cleo, who’s persistent, caring and kind. What a great, unexpected story. 

— Susan


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Twins: Graphic Novel Cover Image
By Varian Johnson, Shannon Wright (Illustrator)
$24.99
ISBN: 9781338236170
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Graphix - October 6th, 2020

Middle school is full of challenges - new classes, new friends, new choices. And for twins Maureen and Francine, sixth grade means going their separate ways, which is tough, but running for the same spot on the student council is even tougher! Twins takes two very different girls and reminds them of just how much they have in common.

— Laura


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Class Act Cover Image
By Jerry Craft, Jerry Craft (Illustrator)
$22.99
ISBN: 9780062885517
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Quill Tree Books - October 6th, 2020

The wait for the sequel to New Kid is over! But it was well worth it because Craft has done it again. By drawing on his own childhood, his writing has once again put me in the heads of these kids—their worries and fears—in such an authentic way. Although he approaches difficult truths, it is softened with humor making it age appropriate for the reader. A great opener for conversations about colorism and class, this is a book for every classroom and school library. 

— Susan


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Cinders and Sparrows Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062289957
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Greenwillow Books - October 13th, 2020

Bachmann is one of my favorite authors for fantasy, this time writing a captivating witches’ tale for middle grade. Beautifully crafted details of the castle and its contents, plus devious evil creatures are perfectly wrought in a twisting story of finding home. A wonderful book to get lost in! 

— Jamie


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No Ordinary Thing Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780823444229
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Holiday House - October 13th, 2020

A mysterious snow globe sets a series of events in motion in this novel of time travel. I liked how Adam’s desire to change his parents’ untimely deaths is dealt with directly and with gentle wisdom. Wonderful characters and a great ending make this a great read.

— Jamie


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Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls: 100 Immigrant Women Who Changed the World Cover Image
$35.00
ISBN: 9781733329293
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Rebel Girls - October 13th, 2020

In the newest collection of Rebel Girls, they shine a spotlight on 100 immigrant women who have changed the world! From Madeleine Albright to Carmen Herrara, follow these awe-inspiring women as they struggle and prosper in a land that is not their birth country. For fans of the Rebel Girls series! 

— Lindsay A.


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Brains On! Presents...It's Alive: From Neurons and Narwhals to the Fungus Among Us Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9780316428293
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - September 8th, 2020

A humorous nonfiction book about life on earth and all the cool and gross things that live here! Find out if trees can talk to one another, why some people have allergies, and why food goes bad. Perfect for the kid in your life who always asks “Why?”

— Lindsay A.


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Becoming Muhammad Ali Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780316498166
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Jimmy Patterson - October 5th, 2020

“The fight is won before you get in the ring”—words of wisdom abound as I learned what it took for Ali to become a great sports hero. Patterson and Alexander are the perfect writers to make this biography compulsively readable and absorbing. I love this book; it’s the best biography for middle grade I’ve ever read.

— Jamie


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One Time Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062570741
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: HarperCollins - September 8th, 2020

I soon found myself completely charmed by Gina, a quiet character, and her classmates. Her wise teacher creates a classroom of creativity and acceptance: the perfect environment for kids to learn “who are you?” and “who could you be?” So many endearing characters make this a phenomenal realistic fiction novel.

— Jamie


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The Explorer's Code Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781250258854
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Imprint - September 29th, 2020

Anna is my kind of girl with her love of explorers and how she sees mystery and adventure around every corner. I also found Charlie so relatable with his love of books, codes and ciphers, and Emily too, with her love of history. Having the three of them trying to solve the secret of Idlewood Manor without knowing the others too added so much tension! And oh what a discovery they make at the end! Love it!

— Susan


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The Stitchers (Fright Watch #1) Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781419746925
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Amulet Books - August 18th, 2020

With a recommendation from Stephen King, I knew this would be the perfect blend of scary thriller and great characters. What’s lurking in your quiet neighborhood? I definitely look at my neighbors differently now!

— Jamie


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Skunk and Badger (Skunk and Badger 1) Cover Image
By Amy Timberlake, Jon Klassen (Illustrator)
$18.95
ISBN: 9781643750057
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Algonquin Young Readers - September 15th, 2020

With pictures by renowned illustrator Jon Klassen, this family read aloud is on its way to becoming a classic. Two animals, with all too human traits, work out their partnership with the help of a roomful of chickens, a suspicious stoat, and a timely telegram from Aunt Lula. I can’t wait for book two!

— Jamie


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The Silver Arrow Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780316539531
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - September 1st, 2020

I love the fantastical elements that bring the sense of wonder and empowerment to Kate and her brother Tom. As Grossman easily transitions this sense to the many endangered animals they meet on the way, Kate begins to understand that she can affect change.

— Jamie


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The Nerviest Girl in the World Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780375870385
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Knopf Books for Young Readers - August 18th, 2020

With three older brothers and a farm full of ornery ostriches, Pearl isn't afraid of much. But the stakes rise like the hot air balloon she's dangling from, and the reader will have to stay tuned to see if Pearl can balance peril, parents and a growing itch to keep performing in the first moving pictures.

— Laura


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Lightfall: The Girl & the Galdurian Cover Image
By Tim Probert, Tim Probert (Illustrator)
$12.99
ISBN: 9780062990464
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: HarperAlley - September 1st, 2020

I love a graphic novel with a big cinematic feel! The Girl embarks on a noble journey to find a missing pig wizard, meeting very mysterious characters along the way. An underlying message of believing in yourself follows the classic coming of age trope, but feels freshly applied. I loved it! 

— Jamie


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Lupe Wong Won't Dance Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781646140039
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Levine Querido - September 8th, 2020

I finished this book with tears in my eyes and a smile on my lips. It is achingly realistic, and funny. Do middle school square dancing memories cause you to shudder? Lupe has a plan! I loved it! 

— Jamie


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Forget Me Nat (Nat Enough #2) Cover Image
By Maria Scrivan, Maria Scrivan (Illustrator)
$12.99
ISBN: 9781338538243
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Graphix - September 1st, 2020

I couldn’t wait to get back into Nat’s world of hilarious chaos! Hit with her first crush, everything is hearts and floating on air, but is she being true to herself? A wonderful second book in the series!

— Jamie


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Rowley Jefferson's Awesome Friendly Adventure Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9781419749094
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Amulet Books - August 4th, 2020

Come hang out with Rowley and his friends in the second book of the Rowley Jefferson series. Rowley loves to write and create, but finds it a little hard when others don’t like his work. This is a perfect series, especially for Diary of Wimpy Kid fans! It introduces new characters to the Wimpy Kid Universe while also featuring some familiar faces. The coolest part? We have SIGNED COPIES while supplies last! 

— Karen


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Diana and the Island of No Return (Wonder Woman Adventures #1) Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780593174470
Availability: On Our Shelves; Typically Ships in 1 - 2 Days
Published: Random House Books for Young Readers - July 14th, 2020

Flying chariots. Evil demons. Fierce warriors and more. For fans of fantasy, adventure or mythology, you’ll appreciate this story of twelve-year-old Diana (Wonder Woman) who, along with best friend Sakina, must help a stowaway—Augustus. The fate of all their worlds rests in their hands. An ideal read for kids who’ve just moved into middle grade.

— Susan