- School Library Journal Best Books of 2018
- Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2018
- Kirkus Reviews Best Books of 2018
- Hornbook Fanfare
- NPR Book Concierge.
- National Book Award Finalists for Young People’s Literature
Of the many “best books” of the year, here are a dozen that have already proved popular at High Rock.
Blended by Sharon Draper
The worst time in Isabella’s week is the pass off at the mall when she is shuttled between her two families, her white diner waitress mother and her black lawyer father. Managing microaggressions, standing up for herself, and finding her voice are challenges that are as important for readers as they are for the main character.
By the author of Out of My Mind.
Natalie wants to win a science contest, sure that the prize will help lift her mother out of her depression. The chapters model the scientific process - a benefit to sixth grade students - and the book also explores Natalie’s Korean heritage and the complexities of friendship.
For fans of Counting By 7’s, Because of Mr. Terupt
A short, powerful book. Amal angers the local tribal leader and is forced to pay her debt by working for him, becoming an indentured servant with no end to her contract. Set in modern day rural Pakistan but with conditions that feel very distant to readers who are used to fairness and social justice.
If you liked The Breadwinner, a great discussion book for book clubs
An amazing blend of graphic novel and compelling historical narrative. The words play across the page, their placement, size, and color adding meaning to the text.
For history fans but also for those kids who like graphic novels and want to try a nonfiction book.
Caleb and Bobby Gene are looking for adventure. They encounter their 16 year old neighbor, Styx and ask for his help in trading a bag of fireworks that they are not supposed to have. He sets them up for a season of discovery, managing their trades and opening their worlds.
For fans of One for the Murphys, As Brave as You
Mason Buttle is a gentle boy who is accused of murdering his best friend. He can barely read or write, he is relentlessly bullied, and he can’t understand why the Sheriff keeps asking him questions about the accident.
For fans of Wonder - the power of kindness and a good friend
National Book Award Finalist
A graphic novel memoir about growing up raised by grandparents because his mother is a heroin addict. This book is not for every sixth grader; the grandmother’s language is crude but true to her character. Realistic books in graphic novel format are the most popular type of book at High Rock. Rated for middle and high school, a powerful book about finding voice in love of art.
Realistic books in graphic novel format - Most popular type of book at High Rock
Fifty of the most prominent authors of color and diversity offer advice to how to survive the current political climate. Jason Reynolds, Jacqueline Woodson, Kwame Alexander. Poems, essays, artwork
Start here in your search for significant voices in children’s literature
A letter describes a hidden fortune and a historical mystery. Two kids on summer vacation take on the challenge of unraveling town history to solve the puzzle. For fans of The Westing Game and other puzzle mysteries.
This book is mentioned on all the lists.
The verse novel that tells the father’s story from the book Crossover. Chuck is sent to his grandparents after his father dies and learns to love basketball.
High demand title - can’t keep it in the library
A tornado rips apart Ivy’s house, and the entire family squeezes into a hotel room as they pick up the pieces of their life. Ivy is stuck in the middle of her family, sad about being shuttled off to her best friend’s house, wanting the comfort of her family and scared to admit her crush on a girl.
Snatched up in the first minute of a book talk today - an important perspective in a well written book
Lucy’s grandmother insists she spend a year in middle school even though Lucy would fit better in college. Learning to be a friend proves to be more difficult than keeping her academic abilities a secret.
For fans of Counting by 7, Out of My Mind, school stories, books about disabilities