TBR Pile: July 2017

scariest book ever
Image credit: The Scariest Book Ever by Bob Shea (Disney-Hyperion, 2017).

It feels like it has been ages since I’ve posted one of these roundups. I’ll admit I didn’t spend as much time at ALA previewing titles as I did attending sessions. And I’ve been really distracted by the recent news that a new Maurice Sendak picture book was discovered and will be released next year. Fall 2018 can’t come soon enough… So, tell me, what are YOU excited about this month?

For more July releases, check out PW’s on-sale calendar.


Picture Books:

Gianferrari, Maria. Hello Goodbye Dog. illus. Patrice Barton. (7/25/17)

0 stars. I’ve been waiting for a quality picture book about therapy dogs. This one also features a mixed-race girl who uses a wheelchair and it seems like a relatively happy book—not to mention title sounds a lot like Juster & Raschka’s excellent The Hello, Goodbye Window. 

Portis, Antoinette. Now. (7/11/17)

2 stars. This looks to be such a careful, beautiful, contemplative book. As with Portis’ previous masterpiece, Wait, I appreciate the sentiment that we must slow down and appreciate what’s happening in front of us, at the present moment. We all could use a book like this.

Shea, Bob. The Scariest Book Ever. (7/18/17)

0 stars. A “scary” nod to last year’s The Happiest Book Ever featuring a melodramatic ghost narrator who maybe isn’t scary at all. The book looks graphically stunning and, despite its being left out of review journals, I can’t wait to take a peek.


Early Readers:

Virjan, Emma. What This Story Needs Is a Vroom and a Zoom. (7/4/17)

0 stars. Fifth and final book in the incredible, wacky Pig in a Wig early reader series. I’m really excited to follow Pig to the finish line! I’m also working on making felt story adaptations of all of these books so stay tuned…


Juvenile Fiction:

English, Karen. It All Comes Down to This. (7/11/17)

2 stars. Historical fiction (set in 1965) about an upper-middle-class African-American family. We need more stories like this. Plus, English’s Skateboard Party was an OBOB book last year… This should be an easy sell!

Florence, Debbi Michiko. Jasmine Toguchi, Mochi Queen. illus. Elizabet Vukovic. (7/11/17)

0 stars. Diverse series fiction about a Japanese-American for transitional readers? Gimme, gimme! And some mochi, too, please!

Gratz, Allen. Refugee. (7/25/17)

1 star. Three parallel stories from three middle-school refugees across time (Nazi Germany, 1938; Cuba, 1994; and Aleppo, 2015). This book is bound to make waves. I can’t wait to read it.

Harrold, A.F. The Song From Somewhere Else. illus. Levi Pinfold. (7/4/17)

3 stars. This British import is about a girl who meets a boy from another world that is only occasionally connected to ours. In the boy’s home, the girl hears music from this other world. I’m getting some strong Coraline vibes and I love it.

Oh, Ellen. Spirit Hunters. (7/25/17)

2 stars. I’m always down for more children’s horror—especially when it combines the “Korean-American experience with ancient cultural traditions for a new twist on exorcism” (Kirkus).


YA Fiction & Nonfiction:

Leno, Katrina. Everything All At Once. (7/25/17)

0 stars. It’s the 20th anniversary of Harry Potter this year and this is a slight homage. How can you NOT be all nostalgic and want to read this book? A+ timing, HarperTeen.

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