DOWN SAND MOUNTAIN by Steve Watkins
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Oct. 1, 2008

"Although not a fly-off-the-shelves selection, this title may be paired with Gary D. Schmidt's The Wednesday Wars (2007) as titles set in the '60s suitable for multigenerational reads. (Historical fiction. 12-14)"
Sand Mountain, Fla., circa 1966, has a segregated population emotionally wrestling with Jim Crow laws. Read full book review >
FICTION
Released: Oct. 1, 2008

"A concluding note attempts to separate fact from fiction and in so doing makes readers wonder why the author didn't simply tell his family's story and let such works as Diane McWhorter's A Dream of Freedom (2004) tell others. (afterword, footnotes) (Historical fiction. 10-14)"
Although it's squarely focused on the events that culminate in the 1965 march from Selma to Montgomery, Ala., this novel isn't quite so sure of its genre. Read full book review >

RIPPLE EFFECT by Paul McCusker
FICTION
Released: Oct. 1, 2008

"Still, readers may overlook clumsy prose and overt Christian messages to find some good fun here. (Christian science fiction. 10-14)"
In the first installment of the Time Thriller trilogy, previously published as Sudden Switch (1996), 15-year-old Elizabeth Forde, angry at her parents, decides to run away—but instead she disappears while taking a bath. Read full book review >
MELTING STONES by Tamora Pierce
FANTASY
Released: Oct. 1, 2008

"Related in a strongly individual voice, expertly set in context without longwinded explanations and well-stocked with nuanced characters of several ages and species, this suspenseful tale is lit up with magic. (Fantasy. 10-14)"
In this first print edition of a tale originally conceived of and published as an audiobook (2007), the magic of Evumeimei Dingzai, a rough-edged young stone mage last met in Street Magic (2001), is tested to its limits on (and under) an island afflicted with mysterious dead zones. Read full book review >
THE LOST ISLAND OF TAMARIND by Nadia Aguiar
Released: Oct. 1, 2008

"Spunky kids, perilous pursuits and marine mystery make for a smashing good read. (Fantasy. 10-14)"
Stranded on a lost island, a teen faces nail-biting adventures searching for her missing parents in this fantasy cliffhanger. Read full book review >

PALACE OF MIRRORS by Margaret Peterson Haddix
Released: Sept. 30, 2008

"Plenty of fun here from a superior author. (Fantasy. 10-14)"
In this semi-sequel to 1999's Just Ella, which imagined what happens after Cinderella moves to the Prince's palace, readers meet another Cinderella-like character, this one raised to believe that she is the true princess of the realm at war with Ella's kingdom. Read full book review >
HARD GOLD by Avi
ADVENTURE
Released: Sept. 30, 2008

Centering on the more-or-less overlooked American gold rush in Colorado, this historical novel follows Early Wittcomb as he travels from Iowa to Pike's Peak in search of a favorite uncle who set off to find gold and save the family farm from bank foreclosure. Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 23, 2008

"After devouring this title, young fans will clamor for more. (Fantasy. 11-15)"
A series about an American academy of magic takes a dark turn in this sequel to The Hound of Rowan (2007). Read full book review >
HOW TO DITCH YOUR FAIRY by Justine Larbalestier
FANTASY
Released: Sept. 16, 2008

"Fans of Larbalestier's award-winning Magic or Madness trilogy (2005, etc.) might be put off initially by the glib tone, but this comic coming-of-age novel will entertain teen readers. (demerits and suspensions, 'List of Known Fairies Justine Thinks You Should Know,' glossary) (Fantasy. 11-14)"
Charlie attends a magnet school for gifted athletes in a world where people are guided by unseen fairies with such special powers as styling good hair and finding loose change. Read full book review >
FICTION
Released: Sept. 11, 2008

"Contemporary culture, humorous romantic developments and strong characters enhance this collaborative effort. (Fiction. 11-16)"
Three top authors of teen fiction join forces for a collection of linked novellas set in the same small town in North Carolina on Christmas Eve. Read full book review >
CYBELE’S SECRET by Juliet Marillier
ADVENTURE
Released: Sept. 9, 2008

"However, despite these weaknesses, genuine emotion and Paula's alluring love story create a memorable page-turner. (Romanian glossary, not seen) (Fantasy. 11-14)"
Bewitching despite flaws, this companion to Wildwood Dancing (2007) picks up six years later. Read full book review >
GRAN, YOU’VE GOT MAIL! by Jo Hoestlandt
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Sept. 9, 2008

"Overall, this is a believable exploration of the growth of a relationship between a woman with strong, sad memories from the First World War and a member of the digital generation. (Fiction. 10-14)"
A series of letters between 12-year-old Annabelle and her great-grandmother show Annabelle's increasing sympathy for the older woman, who becomes a friend and confidante. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Brad Parks
author of SAY NOTHING
March 7, 2017

In Brad Parks’ new thriller Say Nothing, judge Scott Sampson doesn’t brag about having a perfect life, but the evidence is clear: a prestigious job. A beloved family. On an ordinary Wednesday afternoon, he is about to pick up his six-year-old twins to go swimming when his wife, Alison, texts him that she’ll get the kids from school instead. It’s not until she gets home later that Scott realizes she doesn’t have the children. And she never sent the text. Then the phone rings, and every parent’s most chilling nightmare begins. A man has stolen Sam and Emma. For Scott and Alison, the kidnapper’s call is only the beginning of a twisting, gut-churning ordeal of blackmail, deceit, and terror; a high-profile trial like none the judge or his wife has ever experienced. Their marriage falters. Suspicions and long-buried jealousies rise to the surface. Fractures appear. Lies are told. “The nerve-shredding never lets up for a minute as Parks picks you up by the scruff of the neck, shakes you vigorously, and repeats over and over again till a climax so harrowing that you’ll be shaking with gratitude that it’s finally over,” our critic writes in a starred review. View video >