I had a plan for this post to be much more detailed and to talk about the reasons I am glad I read these authors recently, but as I’m currently trying not to drown in a fairly massive research-based school project, that didn’t end up being feasible. Please know that the following authors are ones who I read for the first time within the past year and whose books have, for one reason or another, struck me as very good and/or important. Please feel free to ask if you have questions or would like to hear more about a particular author!
1. Grace Lin
Author of children’s fiction ranging from picture books to middle grade including nonfiction, poetry, contemporary fiction, historical fiction, and fantasy.
A Book I Read Recently: Where the Mountain Meets the Moon
In the valley of Fruitless Mountain, a young girl named Minli lives in a ramshackle hut with her parents. In the evenings, her father regales her with old folktales of the Jade Dragon and the Old Man on the Moon, who knows the answers to all of life’s questions. Inspired by these stories, Minli sets off on an extraordinary journey to find the Old Man on the Moon to ask him how she can change her family’s fortune. She encounters an assorted cast of characters and magical creatures along the way, including a dragon who accompanies her on her quest for the ultimate answer.
2. Ryan North
Author of “choose-your-own-adventure” retellings of Shakespeare’s works.
A Book I Read Recently: To Be or Not to Be: A Choosable Path Adventure
When Shakespeare wrote Hamlet he gave the world just one possible storyline, drawn from a constellation of billions of alternate narratives. And now you can correct that horrible mistake! Play as Hamlet and avenge your father’s death with ruthless efficiency this time. Play as Ophelia and change the world with your scientific brilliance. Play as Hamlet’s father and die on the first page, then investigate your own murder “as a ghost”! Featuring over 100 different endings, each illustrated by today’s greatest artists, incredible side quests, fun puzzles, and a book-within-a-book instead of a play-within-a-play, To Be or Not To Be offers up new surprises and secrets every time you read it.
Author of middle grade and young adult contemporary fiction.
A Book I Read Recently: Linked
Link, Michael, and Dana live in a quiet town. But it’s woken up very quickly when someone sneaks into school and vandalizes it with a swastika. Nobody can believe it. How could such a symbol of hate end up in the middle of their school? Who would do such a thing?
Because Michael was the first person to see it, he’s the first suspect. Because Link is one of the most popular guys in school, everyone’s looking to him to figure it out. And because Dana’s the only Jewish girl in the whole town, everyone’s treating her more like an outsider than ever.
The mystery deepens as more swastikas begin to appear. Some students decide to fight back and start a project to bring people together instead of dividing them further. The closer Link, Michael, and Dana get to the truth, the more there is to face-not just the crimes of the present, but the crimes of the past.
Author of middle grade graphic novels about cats, friendship, and saving the world (and apparently a lot of picture books and early reader books that I was not aware of until I started writing this post).
A Book I Recently Read: Katie the Catsitter
Katie is dreading the boring summer ahead while her best friends are all away at camp–something that’s way out of Katie and her mom’s budget, UNLESS Katie can figure out a way earn the money for camp herself. But when Katie gets a job catsitting for her mysterious upstairs neighbor, life get interesting.
Can Katie wrangle a whole lot of wayward cats, save a best friendship (why is Beth barely writing back? And who’s this boy she keeps talking about?!), AND crack the biggest story in the city’s history? Some heroes have capes . . . Katie has cats!
Author of middle grade contemporary fiction.
A Book I Read Recently: A Dog Like Daisy
Daisy has only ten weeks to prove her usefulness or else be sent back to the pound. Yet if she goes back, who will protect Colonel Victor from his PTSD attacks? Or save the littler human, Micah, from those infernal ear muzzles he calls earphones? What if no one ever adopts her again?
Determined to become the elite protector the colonel needs, Daisy vows to ace the service dog test. She’ll accept the ridiculous leash and learn to sit, heel, shake, even do your business, Daisy when told to.
But Daisy must first learn how to face her own fears from the past or risk losing the family she’s so desperate to guard — again.
Have you come across any wonderful new-to-you authors lately?
Until the next chapter,