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january 2019 Best Children's Books

Updated Jul. 23, 2019
The Wishbreaker book
#25
The Wishbreaker
Written by Tyler Whitesides
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Ace and Ridge are back to save their friend—and the world—in this sequel to The Wishmakers. Being a Wishmaker may be more trouble than it’s worth. Sure, you get a genie who can grant an unlimited number of wishes, but for each one you make you have to accept an awful consequence in return. Not to mention that you’re also given an impossible quest and only seven days to fulfill it! Despite all that, Ace and his genie, Ridge, managed to complete their last mission—but they couldn’t save their friend Tina from being abducted by a rogue genie who’s bent on using his limitless power to rule the world. To rescue her, Ace must reunite with Ridge to become a Wishmaker once more, and they’ll need to team up with the unlikeliest of new allies. It’s not every day you get a second chance to save the world, so Ace is determined to learn from his past mistakes and wish for the best, literally. Perfect for fans of Max Brailler, Adam Gidwitz, and Dan Gutman, this middle grade series is a wonderful mix of unpredictable magic, zany humor, and daring adventure. “An ingenious premise” raved Kirkus in a starred review!

Funny Kid #3: Prank Wars book
#26
Funny Kid #3: Prank Wars
Written by Matt Stanton
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Big Nate meets Timmy Failure in Funny Kid #3: Prank War, the third book in the uproarious highly illustrated middle grade series by Matt Stanton, Australia’s bestselling children’s book author. Max is the Funny Kid and, given the choice, he’d always rather laugh than fight. But when a prank war breaks out just before the big overnight class trip, Max has no choice but to pull off the funniest prank ever! Gunker dragons, duck smugglings, stolen suitcases, lethal super-beans, and the greatest prank ever played are just some of the hilarious antics in store. Paired with hilarious black-and-white illustrations from the author, Max’s mishaps will leave even the most reluctant reader laughing out loud. Matt Stanton again brings his bestselling children’s book chops to the hilarious Funny Kid series, perfect for early middle grade readers looking for side-splitting laughs and lovable, relatable characters!

The Terrible Two's Last Laugh book
#27
The Terrible Two's Last Laugh
Written by Mac Barnett, Jory John and illustrated by Kevin Cornell
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Everyone's favorite pranksters are back in the Terrible Two's series finale. It's Miles and Niles's last year at Yawnee Valley Science and Letters Academy, and Miles gets some worrisome news from his mom: After he graduates, they're moving back home, to their old apartment, in a little town by the sea. She thinks this is good news, but Miles knows it is Terrible. As the Terrible Two face the end of their time in Yawnee Valley, they're determined to pull a prank that changes the town forever.

Watch That Witch! book
#28
Watch That Witch!
Written by Nancy Krulik and illustrated by Ben Balistreri
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

Princess Pulverizer may not be a knight yet, but she won't let that stop her from saving the day! When Princess Pulverizer comes across two identical witches--one good and one bad--it's the evil one she finds most enchanting. That's because the impatient princess is ready to end her Quest of Kindness and finally become a knight, which is just what the bad witch offers. Can Princess Pulverizer's friends break the spell that seems to have taken hold of her?

Sleepover Scientist book
#29
Sleepover Scientist
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

Jada Jones is back for the third book of this popular, celebrated series perfect for STEM fans! Jada is hosting her first sleepover, and she has lots of cool scientific activities planned: kitchen chemistry, creating invisible ink, and even making slime! But when her friends get tired of the lessons and just want to hang out, can Jada figure out the formula for fun and save the sleepover? Praise for Jada Jones: Rock Star "Fast-paced, with supersimple vocabulary and a smattering of earth science to spark interest in young rock collectors everywhere."--Kirkus Reviews "Readers who love "Ivy and Bean" or "Katie Woo" will want to meet Jada Jones."--School Library Journal

Sleepover Scientist #3 book
#30
Sleepover Scientist #3
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

Jada Jones is back for the third book of this popular, celebrated series perfect for STEM fans! Jada is hosting her first sleepover, and she has lots of cool scientific activities planned: kitchen chemistry, creating invisible ink, and even making slime! But when her friends get tired of the lessons and just want to hang out, can Jada figure out the formula for fun and save the sleepover?

Flight of the Bluebird (the Unintentional Adventures of the Bland Sisters Book 3) book
#31
Flight of the Bluebird (the Unintentional Adventures of the Bland Sisters Book 3)
Written by Kara LaReau and illustrated by Jen Hill
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Sisters Jaundice and Kale Bland are flown to Egypt, where they are reunited with their parents, whose real identities they learn, and seek to uncover the mysteries of a magical scarab.

Lost and Found Perl book
#32
Lost and Found Perl
Written by Erica S Perl and illustrated by Chris Chatterton
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

Unlikely best friends Arnold and Louise--a big bear and a chatty chipmunk--are back in this easy-to-read chapter book series! When Louise borrows Arnold's newly found treasure, he's sure he'll never see it again. After all, she loses just about everything he lends her. Louise swears she hasn't lost it, but to get it back, she sends Arnold on a treasure hunt of her own--or is it a wild goose chase?

Death by Airship book
#33
Death by Airship
Written and illustrated by Arthur Slade
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

Prince Conn will never be king. And that’s just fine with him. He’s ninth in line for the pirate throne and is quite happy to sail the skies in his airship with his crew of cheery misfits, plundering as they go. But one by one his siblings are being murdered, in tragic fires, violent cannon attacks or mysterious poisonings. Soon all fingers are pointing toward Conn as the mastermind. To prove his innocence, Conn must make his way to Skull Island, navigating his airship through a gauntlet of villains, explosions and betrayals. Can he reach his father’s kingdom before it’s too late? Or will he suffer the same fate as the rest of his family?

My Weirder-est School #1: Dr. Snow Has Got to Go! book
#34
My Weirder-est School #1: Dr. Snow Has Got to Go!
Written by Dan Gutman and illustrated by Jim Paillot
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-10

In this first book in the My Weirder-est School series, Ella Mentry School is having a science fair! Guest scientist Dr. Snow has arrived to help A.J. and his friends conduct their own cool experiments. But what is “the Snowman” really planning? And what does S.T.E.M. even stand for, anyway? Perfect for reluctant readers and all kids hungry for funny school stories, Dan Gutman’s hugely popular My Weird School chapter book series has something for everyone. Don’t miss the hilarious adventures of A.J. and the gang!

Mary Wears What She Wants book
#35
Mary Wears What She Wants
Written and illustrated by Keith Negley
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Once upon a time (but not too long ago), girls only wore dresses. And only boys wore pants. Until one day, a young girl named Mary had a bold idea: She would wear whatever she wanted. And she wanted to wear pants! Inspired by the true story of Mary Edwards Walker, a trailblazing doctor who was arrested many times for wearing pants, this fresh, charming picture book encourages readers to think for themselves while gently challenging gender and societal norms.

Stonewall book
#36
Stonewall
Written by Rob Sanders and illustrated by Jamey Christoph
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising with the very first picture book to tell of its historic and inspiring role in the gay civil rights movement. From Rob Sanders, author of the acclaimed Pride: The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag, comes this powerful and timeless true story that will allow young readers to discover the rich and dynamic history of the Stonewall Inn and its role in the gay civil rights movement--a movement that continues to this very day. In the early-morning hours of June 28, 1969, the Stonewall Inn was raided by police in New York City. Though the inn had been raided before, that night would be different. It would be the night when empowered members of the LGBTQ+ community--in and around the Stonewall Inn--began to protest and demand their equal rights as citizens of the United States. Movingly narrated by the Stonewall Inn itself, and featuring stirring and dynamic illustrations, Stonewall: A Building. An Uprising. A Revolution is an essential and empowering civil rights story that every child deserves to hear.

Have a suggestion for a book to add to this list? Send an email to [email protected]!