Children - MidChild

The Lion of Mars by Jennifer L. Holm - Book Review

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ISBN: 9780593121818
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Published: Random House Books for Young Readers - January 5th, 2021

A sweet, slice-of-life sci-fi story about eleven-year-old Bell, one of the first children born on the U.S. Mars Colony. Full of coziness, good will, and charming banter, this is an optimistic book about curiosity, exploration, and the strength of found family. ~ Reviewed by Claire Bennet

Popcorn Bob by Maranke Rinck - Book Review

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By Maranke Rinck, Martijn van der Linden (Illustrator), Nancy Forest-Flier (Translated by)
ISBN: 9781646140404
Availability: Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Levine Querido - April 20th, 2021

Popcorn Bob is a delightful new midchild series translated from the original Dutch. Perfect for children beyond early readers but not quite ready for text-heavy chapter books, Popcorn Bob is a silly, heavily illustrated novel about a hangry genetically modified, anthropomorphic popcorn kernel. Also the depiction of Ellis’ two dads in a matter of fact way without comment does wonders for representation. ~ Reviewed by Dafydd Wood

The Deepest Breath by Meg Grehan - Book Review

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ISBN: 9780358354758
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Published: HMH Books for Young Readers - February 16th, 2021

Eleven-year-old Stevie is the kind of person who likes to know things. That's why she's reading a book on her greatest fear: the ocean and the creatures that live deep inside it. If she can pin down all the facts, maybe the ideas won't feel so scary. Harder to get comfortable with is the strange, fizzy feeling she has about her friend Chloe and the sense that it's the one thing she can't ask her mom about. This is a beautiful coming-out and coming-of-age story in many of the typical ways, but Stevie's struggle to accept that grownups don't know everything struck me as both unconventional and especially poignant. So much of being a kid is working out Big Questions about what the world is. So much of being an adult is performing confidence and knowledge even when you feel unsure. This book gets right at the heart of those sticky feelings, and is sure to make any reader feel more secure in their own honest, true self. ~ Reviewed by Nadja Tiktinsky

Maybe Maybe Marisol Rainey by Erin Entrada Kelly - Book Review

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ISBN: 9780062970428
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Published: Greenwillow Books - May 4th, 2021

This cute book about a little girl overcoming her fears is a familiar story with a modern take. The fear of climbing the big tree in her backyard is center, but our gal Marisol is a relatable, imaginative character who must face several fears and worries. We also see her dealing with siblings, her family dynamics, bullies, and a best friend who is just the best. Based on Kelly’s life, ages 7 to 10 (and of course, adults) can enjoy. ~ Reviewed by Jeanette

Bea Is for Blended by Lindsey Stoddard - Book Review

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ISBN: 9780062878168
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Published: HarperCollins - May 4th, 2021

I've finally figured out just why it is that I like Lindsey Stoddard so much - that is, in addition to her phenomenal craft and ability to slowly inflate unlikeable characters into fully-rounded, complex people, while still maintaining and honoring that negative first impression. It's that, in all of her books, she taps into one of the great traditions of children's literature: gracious recognition of the interconnectivity between books. So many of the all-time greats - Nesbit, Eager, Birdsall - use what their characters read as a way to define who they are. By continuing this tradition, Stoddard pays homage to the authors she's built off of, and, more importantly, offers their work as gifts to her readers. Add that to the biting feminist commentary in this book, as well as the blueprint it lays out for creating small-scale social change, and you've got the perfect blend of tradition and revolution. ~ Reviewed by Nadja Tiktinsky

The Year I Flew Away by Marie Arnold - Book Review

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ISBN: 9780358272755
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Published: Versify - February 2nd, 2021

Haitian magical realism set in modern-day Brooklyn. Ten year-old Gabrielle immigrates to Brooklyn from Haiti to live with her aunt and uncle, with the promise that her parents will join her when they can afford it. After experiencing cruelty at the hands of her new classmates, she's desperate to find a way to be accepted in America. So, when a witch gives her a mango sliced into three pieces and tells her to make a wish for every piece she eats, Gabrielle doesn't hesitate. She wishes away her accent, her appearance - and a few things she hadn't bargained for. Witches always take payment, after all. I loved this book's playful energy and its undercurrent of serious commentary on the immigrant experience in America and the value of individualized identity. It would make a great choice for a classroom or book club read. ~ Reviewed by Nadja Tiktinsky


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