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Growing Reader

Tween

The Most Exciting Middle Grade & Chapter Books of 2022

by Devon A. Corneal

middle-grade-chapter-books-2022

Starting the new year is a lot like starting a new book. You have a vague idea of the people you’ll meet, the places you’ll go, and the challenges you’ll face — but you don’t really know what’s coming. Each day, like each page, is a chance to encounter the unexpected. In that spirit, we’ve selected a few upcoming titles to keep you excited about what lies ahead in the new year and in a new set of reading adventures. Take a look, see what grabs you, and get ready for a wild ride.

  • She Persisted: Coretta Scott King

    by Kelly Starling Lyons and Chelsea Clinton, illustrated by Alexandra Boiger and Gillian Flint

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    Learn more about civil rights leader and activist Coretta Scott King in this new biography by Kelly Starling Lyons and Chelsea Clinton. Coretta Scott King is best known for being the wife of Martin Luther King, Jr. However, she was a powerful force for women and people of color in the United States long after her husband died. Her continuation of his work profoundly changed the country for the better.

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  • Sunlight on the Snow Leopard

    by Mary Pope Osborne, illustrated by AG Ford

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    The Magic Tree House is back with another globe-trotting adventure! This time, Jack and Annie head to Nepal, where they encounter the supernatural, the endangered, and the unpredictable.

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  • Star Child

    by Ibi Zoboi

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    As a child, Octavia Estelle Butler was extremely shy and felt more comfortable in a library than around people. She became an award-winning science fiction writer whose work challenged readers to confront their ideas about alienation and humanity. In this new biography, author Ibi Zoboi introduces this acclaimed author to a new generation, using poems and prose to paint an extraordinary picture of a remarkable woman.

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  • Omar Rising

    by Aisha Saeed

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    Omar has an incredible opportunity — he earned a scholarship to an elite boarding school — something rarely offered to the son of a servant. But as he quickly learns, the school doesn’t want him there and will do everything in its power to make sure he doesn’t graduate. A story of tenacity and determination, readers will root for Omar from the very first page.

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  • Katie the Catsitter Book 2: Best Friends for Never

    by Colleen AF Venable, illustrated by Stephanie Yue

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    Calling all cat lovers, graphic novel enthusiasts, and superhero (or sidekick) wannabes! If you thought Katie’s adventures with 217 cats were fun the first time around, you’re going to love the second book in this delightfully awkward and funny middle grade series.

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  • Hilo Book 8: Gina and the Big Secret

    by Judd Winick

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    Gina doesn’t know what happened to life on Earth, but things are definitely not ok. Weird creatures are everywhere, including some enormous monsters, and Gina must get things back to normal before something terrible happens. Thankfully, she has good friends and an excellent sense of humor to help her out.

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  • The Ice Cream Machine

    by Adam Rubin

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    Adam Rubin really likes food. First, he brought us taco-loving dragons, and now he’s scooped up six of the funniest stories you’ll read this year — all about ice cream. As an extra bonus, each one is illustrated by a different artist, so you can feast your eyes on gorgeous pictures while diving into delicious tales about our favorite frozen treat.

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  • Look What We Can Do!

    by Candy James

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    Graphic novels aren’t just for older kids — early readers love good pictures with awesome stories, too — and that’s just what they get with Look What We Can Do! Join Archie & Reddie as they try to win a local talent show with an incredible act — which they’ll perform just as soon as they think of it.

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  • Wonder: Illustrated Edition

    by R.J. Palacio

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    This magical book has long been on my list of favorites — I give copies to every tween I can find, hoping it will provide them with the strength and courage to navigate the sometimes-treacherous social life of middle school. This illustrated version is filled with gorgeous art from Ted Carpenter, the talented artist who designed the original cover, making Auggie Pullman’s story even more beautiful and captivating.

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  • Map of Flames (The Forgotten Five, Book 1)

    by Lisa McMann

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    Lisa McMann is a unique talent who creates richly imagined worlds where children discover hidden talents, overcome insurmountable challenges, and learn to live with both hope and loss. Her latest series begins on a tropical island where five remarkable orphans with supernatural powers leave their home to uncover a hidden family secret in a world that sees them as an unnatural threat.

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  • Finn and the Subatomic Slip-and-Slide

    by Michael Buckley

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    I’ve always been on the fence about time travel. On the one hand, amazing, right? On the other, super scary and possibly deadly. In Michael Buckley’s latest book, the time-traveling Finn returns home to find nothing is as it’s supposed to be. His friends don’t remember him, giant alien bugs dominate Earth, and Finn has to figure out how to end a terrifying Plague — for the second time. So, it’s back to the Subatomic world to find his father, the only person who can help Finn put everything back the way it should be.

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  • Max and the Midknights: The Tower of Time

    by Lincoln L. Peirce

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    From the creator of Big Nate comes the latest book in the Max & The Midknights series, where chivalry and laughs go hand in hand. The only thing Max has ever wanted is to become a knight — and so far, she’s overcome kidnappings, power-hungry kings, dangerous beasts, and tricky magic in pursuit of her dream. So how could a possibly evil twin, disgusting trolls, or swashbuckling pirates stop her now?

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  • PAWS: Gabby Gets It Together

    by Nathan Fairbairn, illustrated by Michele Assarasakorn

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    Gabby, Priya, and Mindy are best friends with one essential thing in common — none of them can have a pet. Rather than let that stand in the way, these enterprising girls start a business walking their neighbors’ dogs. The dogs get some exercise while the girls get some canine companionship and spending money — and an education in the challenges of running a business with people who don’t always see eye to eye.

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  • Area 51 Interns: Alien Summer

    by James S. Murray and Carsen Smith

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    Viv Harlow is about to have a very, very bad day. First, she had to visit her mom’s office on a military base instead of spending time at the beach with her friends. Then, a group of aliens escapes from an underground bunker, leaving Viv with no choice but to grab some high-tech gear and save the day, all while trying to play it cool around her current crush. Sometimes, it’s better to stay in bed.

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  • Dinosaur Club: The T-Rex Attack

    by Rex Stone

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    Dinosaur-loving kids will go crazy for this first in a new series of early reader chapter books from DK. The fun, engaging narrative takes newly independent readers on a prehistoric adventure while scientific facts in the backmatter build knowledge about kids' favorite dinos and less-familiar dinosaurs.

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  • Who Was the Greatest?: Muhammad Ali

    by Gabe Soria and Who HQ, illustrated by Chris Brunner and Rico Renzi

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    The Who Was? series is now in graphic novel form, bringing the stories of fascinating people to life in bold, full-color illustrations perfect for middle grade readers. Jump into this series and explore Muhammad Ali’s famous fight with Joe Frazier, known the world over as the Thrilla in Manila.

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