Eb & Flow by Kelly J. BaptistWhat it's about: Suspended after a fight at school, 7th-graders Ebony "Eb" Wilson and De’Kari "Flow" Flood have time to observe their now-viral conflict making waves in their neighborhood -- and making each of them consider if this is really how they want things to be.
How it's told: through free-flowing poetry from both characters, allowing readers to see the tough situations behind each kid and their actions.
For fans of: Jason Reynolds and Jacqueline Woodson. (Ages 8-13.)
Mirror to Mirror by Rajani LaRoccaStarring: 12-year-old twin musicians Maya (anxious and secretive) and Chaya (easygoing but worried about her sister).
What happens: When misunderstandings threaten to tear them apart, the twins decide to walk in each other's shoes by swapping places at summer camp.
Why you might like it: Poetic writing and switching points of view give you a close-up look at how each twin thinks and feels. (Ages 10-13.)
Leeva at Last by Sara Pennypacker; illustrated by Matthew CordellThe question: "What are people for?" wonders 8-year-old Leeva Thornblossom.
The answer: surely isn't "money" or "fame" like Leeva's greedy parents claim. Maybe she can figure it out with help from a kid in a hazmat suit, a skateboarding librarian, and a grumpy badger.
Who it's for: If you love chapter books that grab your attention with both words and art, don't miss this team-up between Clementine author Sara Pennypacker and award-winning artist Matthew Cordell. (Ages 8-12.)
Legends of Lotus Island: The Guardian Test by Christina Soontornvat; illustrated by Kevin HongWhat it's about: Orphan Plum is thrilled when she's accepted to the Guardian Academy, where kids train to become shape-shifting protectors of nature. Once there, however, Plum worries that she'll never find her animal form, and will have to leave the Academy and the only friends she's ever had.
Read it for: intriguing world-building paired with imaginative manga-style artwork.
While you wait: for the next book in this new series, you might also enjoy Michelle A. Barry's Moongarden.
Hoops by Matt TavaresWelcome to: Wilkins, Indiana, 1976, where the brand-new girls basketball team gives talented athlete Judi her long-awaited chance to play.
What happens: Despite zero support from the school and lots of obstacles, the new teammates forge friendships and fight their way to the state championships.
Did you know? This exciting, feel-good graphic novel is inspired by a real-life history-making basketball team. (Ages 8-12.)
Nic Blake and the Remarkables: The Manifestor Prophecy by Angie ThomasWhat it's about: For her 12th birthday, Nic Blake wants nothing more than to begin using her inherited supernatural Gift as a Manifestor. Instead, she gets a risky magical quest and some big surprises about her dad.
For fans of: Kwame Mbalia's Tristan Strong series and its funny, fast-paced blend of African folklore and Black American history.
Book buzz: This is the first kids' book by Angie Thomas, author of the popular YA book The Hate U Give. (Ages 8-12.)
Moonwalking by Zetta ElliottWhat it's about: the unlikely friendship between geeky Afro Latino graffiti artist Pie Velez and punk music-obsessed J.J. Pankowski, one of the few white kids at their 1980s Brooklyn school.
How it's told: through structured visual poetry from Pie and free verse from J.J.
Read it for: a vivid look at a particular time and place, as well as the complex ways racism can impact a friendship. (Ages 11-13).
A Duet for Home by Karina Yan GlaserStarring: musician-in-training June, who just moved with her family into a homeless shelter; and classical music fan Tyrell, who's lived there for years.
What happens: As June adjusts to such a big change, she bonds with Tyrell, who helps her find a place to practice her precious viola.
Why you might like it: While staying realistic about the difficulties faced by kids in the shelter system, A Duet for Home offers heartwarming friendships and notes of hope. (Ages 9-13.)
Temple Alley Summer by Sachiko Kashiwaba; illustrated by Miho Satake; translated by Avery Fischer Udagawa What it's about: After glimpsing a mysterious girl in his family's old house, Japanese 5th-grader Kazu thinks he might have seen a ghost. But the same girl shows up at school the next day, as if she's always been there. Who is she? And what's her connection to the supposedly mystical temple which once stood on Kazu's street?
For fans of: the movie Spirited Away and other sweet, whimsical tales of the supernatural. (Ages 8-12.)
Kerry and the Knight of the Forest by Andi WatsonWhat it's about: Kerry is lured into the Forest of Shadows on his way home with life-saving medicine for his parents. There, he meets the strange, grouchy, one-eyed Waystone, who's supposed to guide travelers through the dangerous woods.
Why you might like it: Growing suspense and some hard choices complicate Kerry's quest in this graphic novel adventure.
You might also like: Ben Hatke's Mighty Jack series and Luke Pearson's Hildafolk books. (Ages 7-10.)
A Song Called Home by Sara ZarrStarring: 11-year-old Lou, who's dealing with way too much after her alcoholic dad leaves, her mom remarries Steve from church, and they move from their tiny San Francisco apartment to a house in the suburbs.
What happens: Lou finds comfort and control in two activities: stealing small things and learning to play the guitar in the hopes that it might bring her dad back.
Read it for: Lou's authentically messy experience of family, faith, and coping with change. (Ages 9-13.)
Contact your librarian for more great books!
Wilbraham Public Library
25 Crane Park Drive
Wilbraham, Massachusetts 01095