THE DOOR BY THE STAIRCASE by Katherine Marsh
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Well-drawn characters, an original setting, and a satisfying resolution are the ingredients that make this carefully crafted middle-grade adventure a highly rewarding read. (Fantasy. 8-12)"
Will bravery, kindness, and perceptiveness be enough to earn 12-year-old orphan Mary Hayes a permanent home with Madame Zolotaya, the elderly woman who rescues her from a terrible Buffalo orphanage? Read full book review >
ALISTAIR GRIM'S ODD AQUATICUM by Gregory Funaro
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Dive head-, feet-, or face-first into this delicious danger. (character list) (Fantasy. 10-13)"
If it's fear that keeps the senses sharp, all five of Grubb Grim's must be knives. Read full book review >

WORLDS OF INK AND SHADOW by Lena Coakley
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"A potentially intriguing experiment runs aground. (Fantasy. 12-18)"
Worlds collide and characters come to life when four young writers discover the limits of their creative powers. Read full book review >
ONCE UPON A KISS by Robin Palmer
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"While the road may be well-trodden, readers are still in for a breezy, enjoyable ride. (Fantasy. 12-16)"
Back to the Future meets The Breakfast Club for Generation Z.Read full book review >
THE TIARA ON THE TERRACE by Kristen Kittscher
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"An entertaining mystery featuring kids who readily outsmart all the adults; what could be better? (Mystery. 9-12)"
Following The Wig in the Window (2013), preteen sleuths Sophie Young and Grace Yang are back for a second outing, joined by Trista Bottoms, this time investigating the death—and potentially the murder—of a man managing their major local parade.Read full book review >

SUPERHEROES DON'T EAT VEGGIE BURGERS by Gretchen Kelley
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"A sweet exploration of an evolving friendship burdened by some tiresome tropes; should Kelley focus on the former and move past the latter, she will do well. (Fiction. 10-14)"
A middle school student solves his problems with a seemingly magic journal. Read full book review >
MR. LEMONCELLO'S LIBRARY OLYMPICS by Chris Grabenstein
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Dewey like this? Of course, and so will upper-elementary and middle school readers and gamers alike. (Fiction. 9-14)"
Can the hometown champions defeat teams from around the country in a new contest at Mr. Lemoncello's fantastic library? Read full book review >
THE CASE OF THE GIRL IN GREY by Jordan Stratford
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"A tragically flawed premise results in a lamentable waste of excellent writing. (Historical mystery. 8-12)"
More spurious adventures with those crime-solving minxes Ada Byron (Lovelace) and Mary Godwin (Shelley). Read full book review >
THE SKELETON TREE by Iain Lawrence
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Unsettling and compelling, a gripping, evocative read. (author's note) (Adventure. 8-12)"
Chris, 12, is thrilled to sail from Kodiak, Alaska, down to Vancouver, British Columbia, with Uncle Jack but surprised (and not thrilled) to discover Frank, a sullen teen, is coming, too; the boys' mutual antipathy grows even after they're shipwrecked on the wild Alaskan coast, where cooperation is a precondition for survival. Read full book review >
MY NAME IS NOT FRIDAY by Jon Walter
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"A heartbreaking story about family, justice, and the resilience of the human spirit. (Historical fiction. 12-16)"
Samuel, a freeborn black orphan, is sold into slavery during the height of the Civil War. Read full book review >
WINTER'S BULLET by William Osborne
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"An intriguing alternative history lesson wrapped in a nail-biting adventure. (Historical fiction. 12-14)"
Hitler plans to unleash his greatest weapon in a last-ditch effort to win World War II. Read full book review >
PAPER WISHES by Lois Sepahban
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"This historical debut speaks volumes of love and longing. (author's note) (Historical fiction. 8-12)"
During World War II, Manami and her parents and grandfather are forced to relocate from Bainbridge Island in Washington to Manzanar, an internment camp in California for Japanese-Americans. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Michael Eric Dyson
February 2, 2016

In Michael Eric Dyson’s rich and nuanced book new book, The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America, Dyson writes with passion and understanding about Barack Obama’s “sad and disappointing” performance regarding race and black concerns in his two terms in office. While race has defined his tenure, Obama has been “reluctant to take charge” and speak out candidly about the nation’s racial woes, determined to remain “not a black leader but a leader who is black.” Dyson cogently examines Obama’s speeches and statements on race, from his first presidential campaign through recent events—e.g., the Ferguson riots and the eulogy for the Rev. Clementa Pinckney in Charleston—noting that the president is careful not to raise the ire of whites and often chastises blacks for their moral failings. At his best, he spoke with “special urgency for black Americans” during the Ferguson crisis and was “at his blackest,” breaking free of constraints, in his “Amazing Grace” Charleston eulogy. Dyson writes here as a realistic, sometimes-angry supporter of the president. View video >