Book Lists

Reading is an Adventure!

Join the Summer Reading Challenge with Chris Grabenstein

Learn about the latest installment in the Mr. Lemoncello's Library series!

Before becoming everyone’s favorite game maker, Mr. Lemoncello was a kid who enjoyed taking risks. Discover more about MR. LEMONCELLO’S VERY FIRST GAME from author Chris Grabenstein and add it to your Summer Reading list!

Click here to join the Summer Reading Challenge!

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library: The Graphic Novel

The bestselling book is now a full-color, fun-packed graphic novel!

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library 

By Chris Grabenstein; illustrated by Douglas Holgate

The Lemoncello books have spent over 100 Weeks on the New York Times Bestseller List and are on 44 State Award Lists!

Find out if game-loving Kyle Keeley can escape from what James Patterson calls “the coolest library in all the world” in this fun-filled graphic novel from the much-loved co-author of Treasure Hunters and the bestselling illustrator of Last Kids on Earth!

When Kyle learns that the world’s most famous game maker, Luigi Lemoncello, has designed the town’s new library and is having an invitation-only lock-in on opening night, he’s determined to be there! But the tricky part isn’t getting into the library–it’s getting out. Because when morning comes, the doors stay locked. Kyle and the other kids must solve every clue and figure out every secret puzzle to find the hidden escape route!

How many books have you read in the Mr. Lemoncello's Library series?

Even More Books by Chris Grabenstein

Learn more about Chris Grabenstein

CHRIS GRABENSTEIN is the bestselling author of the Mr. Lemoncello, Smartest Kid in the Universe, Dog Squad, and Welcome to Wonderland series. He is also the co-author of numerous page-turners with James Patterson and of Shine! which he co-wrote with his wife, J.J. Grabenstein.

Books for Autism and Neurodiversity Awareness Month

This April, foster understanding with book recommendations for Autism and Neurodiversity Awareness Month

Show Us Who You Are
A Kind of Spark
Ariel Crashes a Train
The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl
Things Seen from Above
A Different Kind of Normal
Like a Charm

Earth Day Reads

Find the perfect Earth Day booklists for your classroom or library! 

The Wonderful Wisdom of Ants

The Wonderful Wisdom of Ants By Philip Bunting

Take a peek under the rock, and discover what we can learn from the world of the ant, in this delightful blend of nonfiction and inspirational humor by author-illustrator Philip Bunting!

There are ten quadrillion ants in the world, and yet I bet you never thought they could teach you anything. But these tiny creatures can do big things when they work together--just like people!

With his signature humor and graphic illustrations, Philip Bunting delivers facts, laughs, and heart all in this special book that teaches that the answers to many of life’s biggest questions can be found in your own back yard (once you’re ready to look).

I Am the Lorax

I Am the Lorax By Courtney Carbone; illustrated by Tom Brannon

A board book based on The Lorax for Dr. Seuss's youngest fans—perfect for encouraging a love of nature!

The Lorax shares his love of animals and plants and need to "speak for the trees" in this simple, sturdy board book about caring for the environment. Printed on recycled board and written in rhymed verse, it's an ideal introduction to the story for toddlers and preschoolers too young for the classic picture book. Now everyone in the family—even pre-readers—can take pleasure in the frolics of the Brown Bar-ba-loots, Swomee-Swans, and Humming-Fish and embrace Dr. Seuss's timely message about protecting the planet!

The World Is Ours to Cherish: A Letter to a Child

The World Is Ours to Cherish: A Letter to a Child By Mary Annaïse Heglar; illustrated by Vivian Mineker

This hopeful picture book--written in the style of a letter--gives kids an honest take on climate change and urges them to band together to help the planet.

The world is a big, beautiful place full of natural wonders--everything from bees to rainfall can seem magical.

The world is also changing. Climate change has already had a devastating effect on the planet.

But it's not too late! If we work together and show a little more care, both for the environment and each other, we can keep this world beautiful.

This moving debut from climate writer Mary Annaïse Heglar is perfect for budding environmentalists and anyone in need of a little hope for the future of our planet.

Once Upon a Forest

Once Upon a Forest By Pam Fong

This gorgeous picture book follows a helpful marmot working to save a forest recovering after a wildfire. Perfect for teaching children to practice kindness while developing an appreciation for animals and the earth.

After a fire leaves the forest smoldering, a determined marmot and her resourceful bird friend set off on a rescue mission in this beautifully illustrated, wordless story.
They clear away fallen branches and scorched bushes. They rake and dig and plant new seedlings in the earth. With determination and ingenuity, as the seasons pass, they care for the little trees by making sure they have enough water, protect their branches from the wind and snow, and keep away hungry creatures, until the trees can thrive on their own.

With a little time, care, and hope we all can help the earth.

When Forests Burn

When Forests Burn By Albert Marrin

A fascinating look at the most destructive wildfires in American history, the impact of climate change, and what we're doing right and wrong to manage forest fire, from a National Book Award finalist. Perfect for young fans of disaster stories and national history.

Wildfires have been part of the American landscape for thousands of years. Forests need fire--it's as necessary to their well-being as soil and sunlight.  But some fires burn out of control, destroying everything and everyone in their path.
 
In this book, you'll find out about:

  • how and why wildfires happen
  • how different groups, from Native Americans to colonists, from conservationists to modern industrialists, have managed forests and fire
  • the biggest wildfires in American history--how they began and dramatic stories of both rescue and tragedy
  • what we're doing today to fight forest fires

  • Chock full of dramatic stories, fascinating facts, and compelling photos, When Forests Burn teaches us about the past--and shows a better way forward in the future.

    Time of the Turtle King

    Time of the Turtle King By Mary Pope Osborne; illustrated by AG Ford

    The #1 bestselling Magic Tree House series is ready to whisk you away across the world with Jack and Annie--this time as World Turtle Experts in the Galapagos Islands!!

    It's just a regular day when ordinary kids Jack and Annie are whisked away in the magic tree house to the Galapagos islands, where they must save a giant tortoise from an erupting volcano! But what do Jack and Annie know about saving turtles?! Plenty, thanks to some magic that makes them experts. A helicopter ride, rushing lava, and a whole lot of determination make this one adventure Jack and Annie will never forget! 

    Did you know that there's a Magic Tree House book for every kid?
    Magic Tree House: Perfect for readers who are just beginning chapter books
    Merlin Missions: More challenging adventures for the experienced reader
    Fact Trackers: Nonfiction companions to your favorite Magic Tree House adventures
    Graphic Novels: Relive the original adventures brought to life with art by Kelly & Nichole Matthews

    If you're looking for Merlin Mission #38: Monday with a Mad Genius, it was renumbered as Merlin Mission #10 when the series was rebranded in 2017.

    The Uninhabitable Earth (Adapted for Young Adults)

    The Uninhabitable Earth (Adapted for Young Adults) By David Wallace-Wells

    An exploration of the devastating effects of global warming—current and future—adapted for young adults from the #1 New York Times bestseller. This is not only an assessment on how the future will look to those living through it, but also a dire overview and an impassioned and hopeful call to action to change the trajectory while there is still time.

         The climate crisis that our nation currently faces, from rising temperatures, unfathomable drought, devastating floods, unprecedented fires, just to name a few, are alarming precursors to what awaits us if we continue on our current path. In this adaptation for young adults from the #1 New York Times bestseller, journalist David Wallace-Wells tells it like it is, and it is much worse than anyone might think. Global warming is effecting the world, if left unchecked, it promises to transform global politics, the meaning of technology and the trajectory of human progress.
         In sobering detail, Wallace-Wells lays out the mistakes and inaction of past and current generations that we see negatively affecting all lives today and more importantly how they will inevitably affect the future. But readers will also hear—loud and clear—his impassioned call to action, as he appeals to current and future generations, especially young people. As he states:  “the solutions, when we dare to imagine them . . . are indeed motivating, if there is to be any chance of preserving even the hope for a happier future—relatively livable, relatively fulfilling, relatively prosperous, and perhaps more than only relatively just.”

    Hidden Systems

    Hidden Systems By Dan Nott

    We use water, electricity, and the internet every day--but how do they actually work? And what’s the plan to keep them running for years to come? This nonfiction science graphic novel takes readers on a journey from how the most essential systems were developed to how they are implemented in our world today and how they will be used in the future.

    What was the first message sent over the internet? How much water does a single person use every day? How was the electric light invented?

    For every utility we use each day, there’s a hidden history--a story of intrigue, drama, humor, and inequity. This graphic novel provides a guided tour through the science of the past--and reveals how the decisions people made while inventing and constructing early technology still affect the way people use it today.

    Full of art, maps, and diagrams, Hidden Systems is a thoughtful, humorous exploration of the history of science and what needs to be done now to change the future.

    Unstoppable Us Series

    An exciting, illustrated book series for middle school readers that looks at the early history of humankind

    Click here to download the guide for Volume 1.

    Click here to download the guide for Volume 2.

    Unstoppable Us, Volume 2: Why the World Isn't Fair

    Unstoppable Us, Volume 2: Why the World Isn't Fair By Yuval Noah Harari; illustrated by Ricard Zaplana Ruiz

    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From world-renowned historian and philosopher Yuval Noah Harari, the bestselling author of Sapiens, comes the second volume in the bestselling Unstoppable Us series that traces human development from the Agricultural Revolution to Prehistoric Egypt.

    Humans may have taken over the world, but what happened next? How did our hunter-gatherer ancestors become village farmers? Why were kingdoms and laws established? How did we go from being the rulers of Earth to the rulers of each other?

    And why isn’t the world fair?

    The answer to all of that is one of the strangest tales you’ll ever hear. And it’s a true story!

    From cultivating land and sharing resources to building pyramids and paying taxes, prepare to discover how humans established civilization, endured the consequences for it, and created history-changing inventions along the way. 

    In Unstoppable Us, Volume 1: How Humans Took Over the World, acclaimed author Yuval Noah Harari explored the early history of humankind. In Volume 2, he is back with another expertly crafted story of how human society evolved and flourished. His dynamic writing is accompanied by maps, a timeline, and full-color illustrations, making the incredible story of our past fun, engaging, and impossible to put down.

    Unstoppable Us, Volume 1: How Humans Took Over the World

    Unstoppable Us, Volume 1: How Humans Took Over the World By Yuval Noah Harari; illustrated by Ricard Zaplana Ruiz

    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From world-renowned historian and philosopher Yuval Noah Harari, the bestselling author of Sapiens, comes an exciting, illustrated book for middle school readers that looks at the early history of humankind.  

    A New York Times Best Book of the Year

    "Gripping and thought-provoking." —The New York Times

    Even though we’ll never outrun a hungry lion or outswim an angry shark, humans are pretty impressive—and we’re the most dominant species on the planet. So how exactly did we become “unstoppable”?

    The answer to that is one of the strangest tales you’ll ever hear. And it’s a true story!

    From learning to make fire and using the stars as guides to cooking meals in microwaves and landing on the moon, prepare to uncover the secrets and superpowers of how we evolved from our first appearances on Earth millions of years ago.

    Acclaimed author Yuval Noah Harari has expertly crafted an extraordinary story of how humans learned to not only survive but also thrive on Earth, complete with maps, a timeline, and full-color illustrations that bring his dynamic, unputdownable writing to life.

    Scare Your Way Through Spring Break Reads

    Dread Detention

    Dread Detention By Jennifer Killick

    The Breakfast Club meets Stranger Things in this middle grade horror novel for fans of Goosebumps! Detention turns even scarier when a group of classmates discover dangers lurking in their school.

    When classmates Hallie, Angelo, Gustav and Naira are forced to come to school on a Saturday, they think things can’t get much worse. But they’re wrong. Things are about to get seriously scary.

    What has dragged their teacher underground? Why do the creepy caretakers keep humming the tune to Itsy Bitsy Spider? And what horrors lurk in the shadows, getting stronger and meaner every minute . . .? Cut off from help and in danger each time they touch the ground, the gang’s only hope is to work together. But it’s no coincidence that they're all there on detention. Someone has been watching and plotting and is out for revenge . . .

    Bumps in the Night

    Bumps in the Night By Amalie Howard

    The creepy middle grade debut from USA Today bestselling author Amalie Howard in which a girl stays with her grandmother in Trinidad for the summer and discovers that she comes from a long line of powerful witches.

    Darika “Rika” Lovelace is in trouble. The kind of trouble that sends her to her grandmother’s estate in Trinidad for the whole summer. But something about the island feels…different. As soon as she steps off the plane, strange things start happening!

    Rika meets a group of kids called Minders, who seem to have elemental powers. Even worse, she can sense jumbies lurking in the shadows. Needless to say, she wants a ticket home. But when the Minders let slip that her long-lost mom is in danger, she knows she can’t leave.

    Thrust into a magical adventure involving bloodcurdling monsters, a supernatural silk cotton tree, and an endless maze, Rika must defeat the fearsome jumbie king to save her family and new friends. But unless she learns to believe in herself, she’ll never beat him or escape his twisted maze.

    Wretched Waterpark

    Wretched Waterpark By Kiersten White

    A middle-grade mystery series that's spooky, creepy, and filled with gothic twists! Meet the Sinister-Winterbottom twins, who solve mysteries at increasingly bizarre summer vacation destinations in the hopes of being reunited with their parents—or at the very least finally finding a good churro.

    “An absolute delight. If I have to die in a waterpark, I want to die in this one.”Holly Black, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Cruel Prince

    "Wickedly weird. . . . Will appeal to anyone who loved A Series of Unfortunate Events." The New York Times


    Meet the Sinister-Winterbottoms: brave Theo, her timid twin, Alexander, and their older sister, Wil. They’re stuck for the summer with their Aunt Saffronia, who doesn’t know how often children need to eat and can’t use a smartphone, and whose feet never quite seem to touch the floor when she glides—er—walks.

    When Aunt Saffronia suggests a week pass to the Fathoms of Fun Waterpark, they hastily agree. But the park is even stranger than Aunt Saffronia. The waterslides look like gray gargoyle tongues. The employees wear creepy black dresses and deliver ominous messages. An impossible figure is at the top of the slide tower, people are disappearing, and suspicious goo is seeping into the wave pool.

    Something mysterious is happening at Fathoms of Fun, and it’s up to the twins to get to the bottom of it. The mystery, that is. NOT the wave pool. Definitely NOT the wave pool. But are Theo and Alexander out of their depth?

    It Happened to Anna

    It Happened to Anna By Tehlor Kay Mejia

    This spine-tingling ghost story follows a tween girl who’s being literally haunted by loneliness until a new friendship upends her life. From the bestselling author of the Paola Santiago series!

    "Absolutely haunting!"—Delilah S. Dawson, New York Times bestselling author of Mine


    Sadie Rivera has been haunted all her life by a vengeful ghost—a ghost that doesn’t want her to make any friends. The moment she tries? Cue exploding lightbulbs, chilling gusts of wind, and slamming doors.

    Last year, Sadie got fed up. Last year, she made a best friend, Anna. So when the ghost caused an accident that killed her best friend, Sadie knew it was all her fault.

    Which is why she’s not going to make any friends this year at her new school. At least until mysterious cool girl Mal shows up, and the ghost doesn’t bother her for once. But Mal wants Sadie all to herself—and she’ll do anything to make sure it stays that way.

    Random House Teachers and Librarians