Aaron Blabey, The Bad Guys (2015)
The Bad Guys #1
They sound like the Bad Guys, look like the Bad Guys, and even smell like the Bad Guys. But Mr. Wolf, Mr. Piranha, Mr. Snake and Mr. Shark are about to change all that by breaking 200 dogs out of the Maximum Security City Dog Pound.”
They sound like the Bad Guys, they look like the Bad Guys . . . and they even smell like the Bad Guys. But Mr Wolf, Mr Piranha, Mr Snake and Mr Shark are about to change all of that! Mr Wolf has a daring plan for the Bad Guys first good mission. The gang are going to break 200 dogs out of the Maximum Security City Dog Pound. Will Operation Dog Pound go smoothly? Will the Bad Guys become the Good Guys? And will Mr Snake please spit out Mr Piranha?”
Middle-Grade Graphic Novels:
Christina Diaz Gonzales and Gabriela Epstein, Invisible (2022)
Five very different students are forced by their school to complete community service… and may just have more in common than they thought.”
How can you be yourself when no one sees the real you?
Five students meet in the school cafeteria when they’re forced to complete their school community service hours.
There’s George: the brain
Sara: the loner
Dayara: the tough kid
Nico: the rich kid
They immediately know that they have nothing in common with each other… even though their school administration has decided that they all belong together.
None of the kids wants to be there, and each has their own issues they’re dealing with in their life outside of school. But when they encounter someone who truly needs their help, they might just be able to come together to work as a team—and help their community—after all.
Christina Diaz Gonzalez, award-winning author of The Red Umbrella, and Gaby Epstein, illustrator of the Baby-Sitters Club graphic novel adaptations, have created a vibrant and relatable graphic novel about unexpected friendships and being seen for who you really are.”
Rick Riordan and Ethan Young, The Maze of Bones (2023)
The 39 Clues #1
The graphic novel adaptation of the mega-bestseller that launched a global phenomenon! Minutes before she died Grace Cahill changed her will, leaving her decendants an impossible “You have a choice – one million dollars or a clue.” Grace is the last matriarch of the Cahills, the world’s most powerful family. Everyone from Marie Curie to Harry Houdini is related to the Cahills, yet the source of the family power is lost. 39 Clues hidden around the world will reveal the family’s secret, but no one has been able to assemble them. Now the clues race is on, and young Amy and Dan must decide what’s hunting clues or uncovering what REALLY happened to their parents.
Faith Erin Hicks, Ride On (2022)
Twelve-year-old Victoria is burned out from the high-pressure world or riding competitions. Can she get back to basics and rekindle her love of horses?”
Twelve-year-old Victoria is burned out from the high-pressure world or riding competitions. Can she get back to basics and rekindle her love of horses? Perfect for fans of Best Friends and Stargazing!
Victoria has always loved horses. But riding in competitions is high stakes, high stress, and shockingly expensive. And even though Victoria’s best friend Taylor loves competing, Victoria has lost her taste for it.
After a heartbreaking fight with Taylor, Victoria needs a new start—at a new stables. A place where she doesn’t have to worry about anything other than riding. No competition, no drama, no friends.
Edgewood Stables seems ideal. There are plenty of horses to ride, and Victoria is perfectly happy giving the other riders the cold shoulder.
But can she truly be happy with no friends?”
New Kid #1.
Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life, but instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics.”
A graphic novel about starting over at a new school where diversity is low and the struggle to fit in is real.
Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life. But instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics, where Jordan is one of the few kids of color in his entire grade.
As he makes the daily trip from his Washington Heights apartment to the upscale Riverdale Academy Day School, Jordan soon finds himself torn between two worlds—and not really fitting into either one. Can Jordan learn to navigate his new school culture while keeping his neighborhood friends and staying true to himself?”
New Kid Series:
- New Kid (2019)
- Class Act (2020)
- School Trip (2023)
Victoria Jamieson, Roller Girl (2015)
Astrid signs up for roller derby camp, but her best friend Nicole chooses dance. While making new friends and struggling with a new sport, Astrid fears she is losing Nicole.”
Twelve-year-old Astrid has always done everything with her best friend Nicole. So when Astrid signs up for roller derby camp, she assumes Nicole will too. But Nicole signs up for dance camp with a new friend instead, and so begins the toughest summer of Astrid’s life. There are bumps and bruises as Astrid learns who she is without Nicole… and what it takes to be a strong, tough roller girl.”
Terri Libenson, Invisible Emmie (2017)
Emmie & Friends # 1
This is the story of two totally different girls—quiet, shy, artistic Emmie and popular, outgoing, athletic Katie—and how their lives unexpectedly intersect one day when an embarrassing note falls into the wrong hands.”
Emmie & Friends Series:
- Invisible Emmie (2017)
- Positively Izzy (2018)
- Just Jaime (2019)
- Becoming Brianna (2020)
- Truly Tyler (2021)
- Remarkably Ruby (2022)
Svetlana Chmakova, Awkward (2015)
Berrybrook Middle School #1.
After shunning Jaime, the school nerd, on her first day at a new middle school, Penelope Torres tries to blend in with her new friends in the art club, until the art club goes to war with the science club, of which Jaime is a member.”
Cardinal rule #1 for surviving school: Don’t get noticed by the mean kids.
Cardinal rule #2 for surviving school: Seek out groups with similar interests and join them.
On her first day at her new school, Penelope–Peppi–Torres reminds herself of these basics. But when she trips into a quiet boy in the hall, Jaime Thompson, she’s already broken the first rule, and the mean kids start calling her the “nerder girlfriend.” How does she handle this crisis? By shoving poor Jaime and running away!
Falling back on rule two and surrounding herself with new friends in the art club, Peppi still can’t help feeling ashamed about the way she treated Jaime. Things are already awkward enough between the two, but to make matters worse, he’s a member of her own club’s archrivals–the science club! And when the two clubs go to war, Peppi realizes that sometimes you have to break the rules to survive middle school!”
Berrybrook Middle School Series:
- Awkward (2015)
- Brave (2017)
- Crush (2018)
- Enemies (2022)
Marjorie Liu and Teny Issakhanian (illustrations), Wingbearer (2022)
Zuli is extraordinary–she just doesn’t realize it yet. Raised by mystical bird spirits in the branches of the Great Tree, she’s never ventured beyond this safe haven. She’s never had to. Until now.
When a sinister force threatens the life-giving magic of the tree, Zuli, along with her guardian owl, Frowly, must get to the root of it. So begins an adventure bigger than anything Zuli could’ve ever imagined–one that will bring her, along with some newfound friends, face-to-face with an ancient dragon, the so-called Witch-Queen, and most surprisingly of all: her true identity.”
Ivy Noelle Weir, Amber Padilla (illustrator) and Frances Hodgson Burnett (original text), The Secret Garden on 81st Street: a Modern Retelling of the Secret Garden (2021)
Mary Lennox is a loner living in Silicon Valley. With her parents always working, video game and tech become her main source of entertainment and “friends.” When her parents pass away in a tragic accident, she moves to New York City to live with her uncle who she barely knows, and to her surprise, keeps a gadget free home. Looking for comfort in this strange, new reality, Mary discovers an abandoned rooftop garden and an even bigger secret…her cousin who suffers from anxiety. With the help of her new friends, Colin and Dickon, Mary works to restore the garden to its former glory while also learning to grieve, build real friendships, and grow.”
Johnnie Christmas, Swim Team (2022)
Bree can’t wait for her first day at her new middle school, Enith Brigitha, home to the Mighty Manatees–until she’s stuck with the only elective that fits her schedule, the dreaded Swim 101.”
Bree can’t wait for her first day at her new middle school, Enith Brigitha, home to the Mighty Manatees–until she’s stuck with the only elective that fits her schedule, the dreaded Swim 101. The thought of swimming makes Bree more than a little queasy, yet she’s forced to dive headfirst into one of her greatest fears. Lucky for her, Etta, an elderly occupant of her apartment building and former swim team captain, is willing to help.
With Etta’s training and a lot of hard work, Bree suddenly finds her swim-crazed community counting on her to turn the school’s failing team around. But that’s easier said than done, especially when their rival, the prestigious Holyoke Prep, has everything they need to leave the Mighty Manatees in their wake.
Can Bree defy the odds and guide her team to a state championship, or have the Manatees swum their last lap–for good?”
Young Adult Graphic Novels:
C. S. Pascat, Johanna the Mad (illustrator) and Joana Lafuente (colorist), Fence (2018)
Nicholas, the illegitimate son of a retired fencing champion, is a scrappy fencing wunderkind, and dreams of getting the chance and the training to actually compete. After getting accepted to the prodigious Kings Row private school, Nicholas is thrust into a cut-throat world, and finds himself facing not only his golden-boy half-brother, but the unbeatable, mysterious Seiji Katayama…
Through clashes, rivalries, and romance between teammates, Nicholas and the boys of Kings Row will discover there’s much more to fencing than just foils and lunges. From acclaimed writer C.S. Pacat (The Captive Prince) and fan-favorite artist Johanna the Mad.”
Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks, Pumpkinheads (2019)
Deja and Josiah are seasonal best friends.
Every autumn, all through high school, they’ve worked together at the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world. (Not many people know that the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world is in Omaha, Nebraska, but it definitely is.) They say good-bye every Halloween, and they’re reunited every September 1.
But this Halloween is different—Josiah and Deja are finally seniors, and this is their last season at the pumpkin patch. Their last shift together. Their last good-bye.
Josiah’s ready to spend the whole night feeling melancholy about it. Deja isn’t ready to let him. She’s got a plan: What if—instead of moping and the usual slinging lima beans down at the Succotash Hut—they went out with a bang? They could see all the sights! Taste all the snacks! And Josiah could finally talk to that cute girl he’s been mooning over for three years . . .
What if their last shift was an adventure?”