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The Stranger Things Craze Continues...

... and are we really that upset about it? NO. 

This week, Netflix dropped the trailer for Stranger Things season 3 and the internet LIT UP.

I, for one, CANNOT WAIT! July 4th is TOO FAR AWAY. 

Which is why I'm super stoked that the Random House has a few things to help hold us over.

1. Hawkins Middle School Yearbook/ Hawkins High School Year Book (2 Books in 1!)

Hawkins Middle School Year Book/ Hawkins High School Year Book by Matthew J. Gilbert

For those of you who like to immerse yourself into the world, we've got this vintage '80s yearbook  that's really two books in one. First, visit the middle school in Mike Wheeler's annual, then flip it over and feel the Tiger pride in Nancy Wheeler's high school yearbook. Filled with class pictures, AV Club candids, lists, inscriptions, and secret notes, this is sure to fascinate fans of all ages.

Order now! 

2. How to Survive in a Stranger Things World 

How to Survive in a Stranger Things World by Matthew J. Gilbert

Need a little help navigating the Upside Down parts of the world? If so, this hardcover collection of wisdom and warnings from Netflix's original series Stranger Things can help guide you through school, friendships, and your town's darkest secrets. Featuring full-color images from the series and quotes from Dustin, Steve, Eleven, and the others, it is sure to thrill fans of all ages.

Available Now!

3. Stranger Things: Suspicious Minds

Stranger Things by Suspicious Minds by Gwenda Bond

Looking for something a bit spookier, head over to the Fiction section for this one:  A mysterious lab. A sinister scientist. A secret history. If you think you know the truth behind Eleven’s mother, prepare to have your mind turned Upside Down in this thrilling prequel to the hit show Stranger Things.

Available now! 

4. Stranger Things: Runaway Max

Stranger Things: Runaway Max by Brenna Yavonoff

Reacquaint yourself with the series just before it kicks off on Independence Day with this must-read novel that explores Max's past--the good and the bad--as well as how she came to find her newfound sense of home in Hawkins, Indiana.

Available June 4th! Pre-order now.

Then settle in and BINGE Stranger Thigns Season 3! 

excited finn wolfhard GIF by Stranger Things

A Quirky Book for ALL Ages- Rumple Butter Cup

Rumple Buttercup by Matthew Gray Gubler

Rumple Buttercup has five crooked teeth, three strands of hair, green skin, and his left foot is slightly bigger than his right.

Join him and Candy Carl (his imaginary friend made of trash) as they learn the joy of individuality as well as the magic of belonging.

 

Author Matthew Gray Gubler

Matthew Gray Gubler is a storyteller from Las Vegas, Nevada, who directs, paints, writes, acts, and knows magic. He also loves to voice cartoon characters, looks for ghosts, and wear soft pajamas.

(And yes, he's THAT GUY from Criminal Minds.)

Rumple Butter Cup out April 2nd!

Get your copy of Rumple Buttercup in stores on April 2nd! 

 

New Review! - Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

 

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Teen Advisory Board Member Sophia Reviews

Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

In Black Beauty, by Anna Sewell, a young horse who spends his early upbringing sheltered from the hardships and cruelty of life begins to broaden his world to the many injustices prevalent in the Victorian era. As he is traded to numerous owners and exposed to the flaws and faults of man, Black Beauty offers an innocent perspective as to why cruelties exist and how they can be mended. Once the horse known as Black Beauty grows into an older colt, the reader establishes a deeper bond with this seemingly insignificant horse, learning the tribulations that a 19th century horse had to surmount, as well as the many injustices that we too must surmount to create a more just world.  

 

A treasured tale since it debuted in 1877, Black Beauty is a heartfelt, poignant, and widely beloved read that hasn't lost its ability to emphasize injustice even to a more modernized audience. Through the many years that this classic has warmed the hearts of all who have read it, it has only gained more meaning and applicability to our world today. After all, "My doctrine is this, that if we see cruelty or wrong that we have the power to stop, and do nothing, we make ourselves sharers in the guilt." -Black Beauty

 

Black Beauty is available in stores now! 

New Review! - Strange Grace by Tessa Gratton

 

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Teen Advisory Board Member Evgenia Reviews Strange Grace

Strange Grace by Tessa Gratton

Strange Grace by Tessa Gratton

Tessa Gratton’s dark and mysterious novel, Strange Grace, tells the story of a small village that made a deal with a devil long ago. Every seven years, the people sacrifice a young man to the forest and, in return, are protected from harm or disease. When her friend Rhun is at risk of being chosen, Mairwen, the daughter of a witch begins to suspect something not being quite right about the old story and is intent on making sure that no other boy’s lives are taken in vain.


One of the most interesting aspects of the book was the characters and their interactions with each other. They were all wildly different, with curious Mairwen, noble Rhun, and hot-headed Arthur. All of them developed as the story continued, completing the book as different people than those in the beginning. Additionally, the book has a long exposition, but the moment that it reaches the climax, it becomes fast-paced and exciting, leaving the reader guessing about what comes next. Gratton throws in twists and turns before finally reaching an impossible to predict ending.

 

Ideal for fans of horror and fantasy, Strange Grace is a well-written, intriguing journey through the forest, with plenty of plot twists and secrets along the way.

 

Strange Grace is available in stores now!

 

 

Ripped from the Headlines: When Life Meets Fiction, College Edition

Anxiety over college admissions is REAL.

Here are two stories from Random House about teens who took their future into their own hands.

 

We Regret to Inform You by Ariel Kaplan

How far would you go to get into the right college?... Fans of Becky Albertalli will appreciate this sharp-witted, timely novel about an overachiever who stumbles into the middle of a college admissions scandal when she's rejected by every school she applied to.

Available in stores now! 

Immoral Code by Lillian Clark

Immoral Code by Lillian Clark

Ocean's 8 meets The Breakfast Club in this fast-paced, multi-perspective story about five teens determined to hack into one billionaire absentee father's company to steal tuition money.

Available in stores now! 

New Review! - King of Scars

 

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Teen Advisory Board Member Evgenia Reviews King of Scars

King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo

King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo

 

King of Scars is a triumphant return to Leigh Bardugo’s Grishaverse, complete with plenty of engaging characters, danger, and excitement. The beginning of novel finds the beloved Nikolai Lantsov, King of Ravka, grappling with the events that occured in Siege and Storm, the conclusion to the author’s other trilogy. Stuck with a dangerous secret to hide, he relies on Zoya, a lovely but abrasive Grisha (people with special powers, many of whom serve in the Ravkan army), to help him save Ravka and banish his inner demons. Further away, in Fjerda, Nina, a familiar face from Six of Crows, is struggling to overcome her grief and return to her old self. Undercover and in danger of being captured by Druskelle, ruthless witch hunters, she comes across a convent hiding a disturbing truth, a threat from her past, and a young woman desperately trying to hide her abilities as Grisha.

 

All of the intertwined plots were interesting, with the point of view alternating between Nikolai, Zoya, Nina, and Isaak, Nikolai’s guard. This emphasis on various different characters showed the scenes from different angles and gave insight into the minds of all of the main characters.

 

As always, Bardugo’s stunning world-building and vivid characters made this a delightfully immersive read. The politics and geography of this fantasy universe are well-defined and clear, making it feel more real. This world that Leigh Bardugo has created, with magic and mischief, is full of twists and turns and the characters that you cannot help but fall in love with.

 

From the fast-paced, surprise-filled beginning to the unexpected ending, prepare for an exciting journey through the palaces and countryside of Ravka and the frigid forests and fishing towns of Fjerda. With brilliant world-building and wonderful writing, King of Scars is certainly a must-read for fans of Bardugo’s Grishaverse.

 

King of Scars is available in stores now. Haven't read the Grishaverse or Six of Crows series? You can find them on our shelves as well! 

Coming Soon! The Sad Little Fact by Jonah Winter and Pete Oswald

The Sad Little Fact Promotional from Schwartz and Wade Books

A New York Times bestselling author and the illustrator of The Bad Seed deliver a perfectly timed, humorous read-aloud to prove that the truth is out there, just waiting to be discovered. In this spare, ingenious story that reads like a modern-day parable, follow a sad little fact that is locked away for telling the truth. Pre-order your copy now!

Diverse Disney Princess’ Fav YA Reads

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- Written by By Ava and Amanda


 

Ah, the sweet nostalgia of Disney Princesses and the hope for more diverse characters. While we pine for the live-action remakes, here are five YA books to read that the diverse Disney Princesses would definitely endorse!

ralph breaks the internet GIF by Walt Disney Studios

1. Jasmine endorses LOVE, HATE, AND OTHER FILTERS

Love, Hate, and Other Filters by Samira Ahmed

Modern Jasmine would totally relate to Maya Aziz, an Indian-American Muslim whose parents want her to marry an eligible bachelor (ahem, Jafar). But Maya is secretly in love with another boy—a boy she knows her parents would never approve of. But when the terrorist attack of 9/11 kills hundreds, Maya and her parents are subject to prejudice for being Muslim.

 

2. Pocahontas endorses MARCH TOWARDS THE THUNDER

 March Toward the Thunder by Joseph Bruchac

As Pocahontas tries to find peace between her family and the Englishmen, Louis Nolette, a fifteen-year-old Abenaki Indian from Canada, fights for the rights of African Americans from an outside perspective. After he is recruited to the northern Irish brigade, despite not being Irish, American, or of age, he begins to see the true meaning of war, and how much needs to be fought to bring peace. Louis starts to realize what he’s truly fighting for - and it’s not for wages.

 

3. Mulan endorses THE KINGDOM OF THE BLAZING PHOENIX

Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix by Julie C. Dao

Although this book is a retelling of Snow White’s fairytale, the kickass but sweet heroine, Princess Jade, reminds us of Mulan’s many adventures and great feats! The evil Empress Xifeng cares more about the shade of her lips than her subjects, causing the kingdom to fall into poverty and starvation. Join Jade as she ventures into the unknown to summon the Dragon God, who could defeat the Serpent Lord—and in turn, Empress Xifeng.

**note--TKOtBP is a sequel to FOREST OF A THOUSAND LANTERNS, but the sequel can be read without the first book (though we wholeheartedly recommend FoaTL!)

 

4. Tiana endorses AKATA WITCH

Akata Witch by Nnedi Okorafor

Tiana is hardworking and independent, and nothing will stop her from achieving her goal, to open her restaurant. Although Sunny is twelve, she experiences struggles living in Aba, Nigeria after being born in New York. Her skin is sensitive to the sun with being albino, and she wishes to do things other kids could do. After making friends with Orlu and ChiChi, she goes to the world of the Leopard people, where your greatest asset. Her story of overcoming and hard work is a must read for all.

 

5. Moana endorses WILDEFIRE

Wildfire by Karsten Knight

Moana’s spirited nature and the ability to be self-sufficient mirrors the strong personality of Ashline Wilde. Looking to start over after unspeakable violence, Blackwood Academy seems like a fresh place to start over. However, after finding out that she is secretly a Polynesian goddess, she must find herself to stop the perilous danger arriving at the school.

 

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