Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman

Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman

Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman (9781442472457)

This is the sequel to the award-winning first book in the Arc of a Scythe series. It continues the story of Citra and Rowan. Citra is completing her apprenticeship under Scythe Curie when they find themselves being hunted down. Rowan meanwhile is doing the hunting, taking out scythes who are hiding illegal activity. He kills as Scythe Lucifer and has become a legend of sorts. As the time for the Winter Conclave comes about though, something far more sinister is rising up and just in time for when the MidMerica scythes gather.

I often have issues with second books in series, a kind of sophomore slump. Shusterman though does not miss a step here. He brings readers right back into his sharply drawn world. It is the writing itself that does this. He has a particular tone and style evident here as he writes of beloved characters and introduces new characters to root for. They are all marvelously complexly drawn, the heroes full of darkness and the villains full of righteousness. The character of the Thunderhead itself is also wonderfully created, its voice wise and also full of questions.

The book is one that will keep readers guessing throughout. Even as they know something is coming, it is not clear what it is or what that will mean. There are layers here that reveal, foreshadowing that is deftly written, and an ending that is so fast and wild that you almost can’t turn the pages quickly enough.

Beautifully crafted and written, this is a worthy successor to the first. And that is saying something! Appropriate for ages 14-18.

Reviewed from copy provided by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers.

2018 Notable Children’s Books

Notable seal image

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) has released their list of notable children’s books for 2018. The list contains books for children ages birth through 14 years old and is broken into age ranges. There are lots of favorites from the last year on the list. Enjoy!

 

This Week’s Tweets, Pins & Tumbls

Here are some cool links I shared on my TwitterPinterest, and Tumblr accounts in the last week:

CHILDREN’S BOOKS

The Children’s Book That Made Me Realize It’s Okay to Be Alone |

Congratulations to this year’s Cybils Award Winners!

Judith Kerr’s The Tiger Who Came for Tea gets film deal | The Bookseller

‘Sad’ dog looking for kids to read to him is now all booked up | https://t.co/Ay5SYuR3mE

Sexual Harassment In Children’s Publishing Reaches a Crisis Point

TEEN READS

“It felt so otherworldly.” – ‘We Are Okay’ author on winning the Printz Medal

Making the Personal Political: Angie Thomas on “The Hate U Give”

Muse of Nightmares: Preview Laini Taylor’s epic sequel to Strange the Dreamer – https://t.co/6AkzBc6Jcl

2018 Amelia Bloomer Top Ten

The Amelia Bloomer awards are managed by the a committee of the Feminist Task Force of the Social Responsibilities Round Table of the American Library Association. Books with significant feminist content and excellent writing are selected. Here are the top ten for 2018:

Ahimsa by Supriya Kelkar

Girl Rising: Changing the World One Girl at a Time

Girl Rising: Changing the World One Girl at a Time by Tanya Lee Stone

Hand Over Hand

Hand Over Hand by Alma Fullerton, illustrated by Renné Benoit

Malala's Magic Pencil

Malala’s Magic Pencil by Malala Yousafzai, illustrated by Kerascoet

Noteworthy

Noteworthy by Riley Redgate

#Notyourprincess: Voices of Native American Women

#NotYourPrincess: Voices of Native American Women edited by Lisa Charleyboy and Mary Beth Leatherdale

The One Hundred Nights of Hero

The One Hundred Nights of Hero by Isabel Greenberg

Piecing Me Together

Piecing Me Together by Renée Watson

Saints and Misfits

Saints and Misfits by S.K. Ali

Shark Lady: The True Story of How Eugenie Clark Became the Ocean's Most Fearless Scientist

Shark Lady: The True Story of How Eugenie Clark Became the Ocean’s Most Fearless Scientist by Jess Keating, illustrated by Marta Alvarez Miguens

2018 Rainbow List

This list offers the best of LGBTQIA+ books for children and teens, ages birth through 18. There are 48 books on the list. Here are the top ten:

The 57 Bus: A True Story of Two Teenagers and the Crime That Changed Their Lives

The 57 Bus by Dashka Slater

The ABC's of LGBT+

The ABC’s of LGBT+ by Ashley Mardell

Baby's First Words

Baby’s First Words by Stella Blackstone and Sunny Scribens, illustrated by Christiane Engel

The Backstagers, Vol. 1 (The Backstagers, Volume One)

The Backstagers, Vol 1 by James Tynion IV and Rian Sygh

Dress Codes for Small Towns

Dress Codes for Small Towns by Courtney Stevens

Felix Yz

Felix XY by Lisa Bunker

Ramona Blue

Ramona Blue by Julie Murphy

Star-Crossed

Star-Crossed by Barbara Dee

They Both Die at the End

They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera

We Are Okay

We Are Okay by Nina LaCour

 

2018 AILA Youth Literature Awards

The winners of the 2018 American Indian Library Association Youth Literature Awards have been announced:

BEST PICTURE BOOK

Baby Raven Reads -

Shanyaak’utlaax: Salmon Boy illustrated by Tlingit artist Michaela Goade, and edited by Tlingit speakers Johnny Marks, Hans Chester, David Katzeek, and Nora Dauenhauer and Tlingit linguist Richard Dauenhauer

BEST MIDDLE SCHOOL BOOK

Tales of the Mighty Code Talkers, volume 1
BEST YOUNG ADULT BOOK
#Notyourprincess: Voices of Native American Women
#Not Your Princess: Voices of Native American Women edited by Lisa Charleyboy and Mary Beth Leatherdale
PICTURE BOOK HONORS
All Around Us

All Around Us by Xelena González, illustrated by Adriana M. Garcia

Black Bear Red Fox

Black Bear Red Fox by Julie Flett

Fall in Line, Holden

Fall in Line, Holden! by Daniel W. Vandever

I'm Dreaming Of...Animals of the Native Northwest

I’m Dreaming of…Animals of the Native Northwest by Melaney Gleeson-Lyall, illustrated by First Nations artists

Mission to Space

Mission to Space by John Herrington

MIDDLE GRADE HONOR

The Wool of Jonesy

The Wool of Jonesy, Part 1 by Jonathan Nelson

YOUNG ADULT HONORS

Love Beyond Body, Space, and Time

Love Beyond Body, Space, and Time: An Indigenous LGBT Sci-Fi Anthology edited by Hope Nicholson

The Marrow Thieves

Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline

Fire Starters

Fire Starters by Jen Storm, illustrated by Scott B. Henderson and colorist Donovan Yaciuk

2 New Books to Love

I Am Loved by Nikki Giovanni

I Am Loved by Nikki Giovanni, illustrated by Ashley Bryan (9781534404922)

This collection of poetry by Giovanni shows the many ways that love shines in our lives. Selected by Ashley Bryan, the poems move from family love to love between friends to more playful poems about dancing or cats. The poems form a cohesive collection, just long enough to work well for young children and not too much to overwhelm. The illustrations by Bryan glow almost like lit stained glass windows with their rich colors and segmented pieces. The entire book has a warmth to it that embraces and enchants. Appropriate for ages 6-9. (Reviewed from copy provided by Atheneum Books for Young Readers.)

Love by Matt de la Pena

Love by Matt de la Pena, illustrated by Loren Long (9781524740917)

A marvelous pairing of the skill of an author with an illustrator working in a new medium, this picture book is all about love as the title states. De la Pena speaks about love in a way that shows how it surrounds us each and every day, in music on the radio, train whistles, the color of the sky. Small moments are captured in his poem, celebrating the little things that make life beautiful and the people who make them special. Long then takes those words and brings them fully alive with his illustrations done with monotype printmaking. The colors and figures are amazing and still it is the play of light in each image that draws the eye making these illustrations exceptional. Readers are guaranteed to fall for Love. Appropriate for ages 3-6. (Reviewed from ARC provided by Penguin Young Readers Group.)

2018 Printz Awards

WINNER

We Are Okay

We Are Okay by Nina LaCour

HONOR BOOKS

The Hate U Give

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Long Way Down

Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds

Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1)

Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

Vincent and Theo: The Van Gogh Brothers

Vincent and Theo: The Van Gogh Brothers by Deborah Heiligman

 

2018 Coretta Scott King Book Awards

AUTHOR AWARD WINNER

Piecing Me Together

Piecing Me Together by Renee Watson

AUTHOR HONOR BOOKS

Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut

Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut by Derrick Barnes, illustrated by Gordon C. James

Long Way Down

Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds

The Hate U Give

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

ILLUSTRATOR AWARD WINNER

Out of Wonder: Poems Celebrating Poets

Out of Wonder: Poems Celebrating Poets illustrated by Ekua Holmes, written by Kwame Alexander with Chris Colderly and Marjory Wentworth

ILLUSTRATOR HONOR BOOKS

Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut

Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut illustrated by Gordon C. James, written by Derrick Barnes

Before She Was Harriet

Before She Was Harriet: The Story of Harriet Tubman illustrated by James E. Ransome, written by Lesa Cline-Ransome