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When I first came across this webcomic, I was not expecting to love it as much as I do. It's about college hockey, something I care very little about. But it quickly won me over. Bitty is a figure skater from Georgia who ends up on the Samwell Hockey team. He has to learn to navigate real hockey with real checking while struggling with his sexuality, college culture, and baking enough pies to feed a small army. This comic is both delightful and heartwarming.
Merci has a lot of things going on as she enters sixth grade--bossy Edna Santos has a crush on her school-assigned Sunshine Buddy, her beloved grandfather Lolo is forgetting things, and to top it off, she's not allowed to try out for the school soccer team! At least her family is on her side. Meg Medina perfectly captures the worst and best of middle school in this satisfying and extremely relatable coming of age tale.
A darkly comedic middle-grade novel that will probably appeal to fans of "The Green Ribbon," both children and adults who enjoy children's fiction. I would probably not recommend for the easily queasy.
Set in a seemingly normal playground, this eerie, Japanese-inspired ghost story follows two school children who attempt to rid their space of a mask-wearing shade. The story will chill your spine, and the impeccable illustrations will thrill your eyes. Perfect for an October evening full of shadows and shivering trees.
With problems at school looming, Marcus convinces his mom to spend a week visiting family in Puerto Rico. He plans to track down his estranged father while they're on the island, but things don't quite go the way he hopes.
This is a captivating, beautiful YA novel that explores family, sexuality, identity, and dealing with a loved one's mental illness with compassion and insight, but also with raw honesty in depicting the realities of Suzette's life. This was the rare contemporary fiction YA that I couldn't put down and read in one sitting.
Phoebe meets Marigold when she accidentally hits her with a rock. Magical misadventures follow as the unicorn whose favorite activity is staring at herself in a pond becomes best friends with this scrappy, nerdy kid that isn't above asking for a little magical aid for her problems, even when it inevitably goes wrong. Like Calvin and Hobbes for the 21st century.
Mischa Abramavicius is the perfect student, so why have all of her college applications (even her safety school!) ended in rejections? Is it a sign that she’s thrown all her eggs in the wrong academic basket? Or is she the victim of a cruel conspiracy? Maybe it’s a bit of both. Kaplan’s follow-up to Grendel’s Guide to Love and War (go read that too, it’s great) is the perfect back-to-school read, expertly blending the whip-smart dialogue of Gilmore Girls with some classic, hard-boiled detective work.
This is my favorite book right now. In Mirage, Somaiya Daud has crafted a beautiful fantasy (which seamlessly features some sci-fi concepts). The characters feel so alive. The setting and cultures, inspired by her Moroccan heritage, are intricate, beautiful, and refreshingly unique. The story is rich and engaging, but also succinct.