School Days: Get Back-To-School Ready With this Mix of School-Themed Reads!
Back-to-school season is upon us. I know, I know. We're not ready either! There will be no more sandy beaches, long-languid evenings, or summer-time fun with friends to look forward to. But, school can be cool too! Just think you'll see your best friends again, learn new things—and get even smarter than you already are! I know we're not all looking forward to doing math again *shudders* but beat the back-to-school blues with this group of YA, MG, and Kids fiction titles. Get back-to-school ready with these relatable titles: whether it's tackling the first day of kindergarten, or battling the anxiety of starting at a new school; or making new friends, it's all here for you!
The Perks of Being a Wallflower: Stephen Chbosky
Blurb: Read the cult-favorite coming of age story that takes a sometimes heartbreaking, often hysterical, and always honest look at high school in all its glory. Also a major motion picture starring Logan Lerman and Emma Watson, The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a funny, touching, and haunting modern classic.
The critically acclaimed debut novel from Stephen Chbosky, Perksfollows observant “wallflower” Charlie as he charts a course through the strange world between adolescence and adulthood. First dates, family drama, and new friends. Sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Devastating loss, young love, and life on the fringes. Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it, Charlie must learn to navigate those wild and poignant roller-coaster days known as growing up.
A #1 New York Times best seller for more than a year, an American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults (2000) and Best Book for Reluctant Readers (2000), and with millions of copies in print, this novel for teen readers (or “wallflowers” of more-advanced age) will make you laugh, cry, and perhaps feel nostalgic for those moments when you, too, tiptoed onto the dance floor of life.
Swing by Kwame Alexander
Things usually do not go as planned for seventeen-year-old Noah. He and his best friend Walt (aka Swing) have been cut from the high school baseball team for the third year in a row, and it looks like Noah’s love interest since third grade, Sam, will never take it past the “best friend” zone. Noah would love to retire his bat and accept the status quo, but Walt has big plans for them both, which include making the best baseball comeback ever, getting the girl, and finally finding cool.
To go from lovelorn to ladies’ men, Walt introduces Noah to a relationship guru—his Dairy Queen-employed cousin, Floyd—and the always informative Woohoo Woman Podcast. Noah is reluctant, but decides fate may be intervening when he discovers more than just his mom’s birthday gift at the thrift shop. Inside the vintage Keepall is a gold mine of love letters from the 1960s. Walt is sure these letters and the podcasts are just what Noah needs to communicate his true feelings to Sam. To Noah, the letters are more: an initiation to the curious rhythms of love and jazz, as well as a way for him and Walt to embrace their own kind of cool. While Walt is hitting balls out of the park and catching the eye of the baseball coach, Noah composes anonymous love letters to Sam in an attempt to write his way into her heart. But as things are looking up for Noah and Walt, a chain of events alters everything Noah knows to be true about love, friendship, sacrifice, and fate.
In Swing, bestselling authors Kwame Alexander and Mary Rand Hess (Solo) present a free-verse poetic story that will speak to anyone who’s struggled to find their voice and take a swing at life.
Screen Queens Lori Goldstein
The Bold Type meets The Social Network when three girls vying for prestigious summer internships through a startup incubator program uncover the truth about what it means to succeed in the male-dominated world of tech.
This summer Silicon Valley is a girls' club.
Three thousand applicants. An acceptance rate of two percent. A dream internship for the winning team. ValleyStart is the most prestigious high school tech incubator competition in the country. Lucy Katz, Maddie Li, and Delia Meyer have secured their spots. And they've come to win.
Meet the Screen Queens.
Lucy Katz was born and raised in Palo Alto, so tech, well, it runs in her blood. A social butterfly and CEO in-the-making, Lucy is ready to win and party.
East Coast designer, Maddie Li left her home and small business behind for a summer at ValleyStart. Maddie thinks she's only there to bolster her graphic design portfolio, not to make friends.
Delia Meyer taught herself how to code on a hand-me-down computer in her tiny Midwestern town. Now, it's time for the big leagues--ValleyStart--but super shy Delia isn't sure if she can hack it (pun intended).
When the competition kicks off, Lucy, Maddie, and Delia realize just how challenging the next five weeks will be. As if there wasn't enough pressure already, the girls learn that they would be the only all-female team to win ever. Add in one first love, a two-faced mentor, and an ex-boyfriend turned nemesis and things get...complicated.
Filled with humor, heart, and a whole lot of girl power, Screen Queens is perfect for fans of Morgan Matson, Jenny Han, and The Bold Type.
Never Always Sometimes Adi Alsaid
Never date your best friend. Always be original. Sometimes rules are meant to be broken.
Best friends Dave and Julia were determined to never be cliché high school kids. They even wrote their own Never List of everything they vowed they'd never, ever do in high school. Most of the rules have been easy to follow, like #5, never dye your hair a color of the rainbow, or #7, never hook up with a teacher.
But Dave has a secret: he's broken rule #8, never pine silently after someone for the entirety of high school. It's either that or break rule #10, never date your best friend. So when Julia impetuously suggests they do every Never on the list, Dave is happy to play along. He even dyes his hair an unfortunate shade of green. It starts as a joke, but then a funny thing happens: Dave and Julia discover that by skipping the clichés, they've actually been missing out on high school. And maybe even on love.
The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl (The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl, #1)
Fanboy has never had it good, but lately his sophomore year is turning out to be its own special hell. The bullies have made him their favorite target, his best (and only) friend seems headed for the dark side (sports and popularity), and his pregnant mother and the step-fascist are eagerly awaiting the birth of the alien life form known as Fanboy’s new little brother or sister.
Fanboy, though, has a secret: a graphic novel he’s been working on without telling anyone, a graphic novel that he is convinced will lead to publication, fame, and—most important of all—a way out of the crappy little town he lives in and all the people that make it hell for him.
When Fanboy meets Kyra, a.k.a. Goth Girl, he finds an outrageous, cynical girl who shares his love of comics as well as his hatred for jocks and bullies. Fanboy can’t resist someone who actually seems to understand him, and soon he finds himself willing to heed her advice—to ignore or crush anyone who stands in his way.
Sal & Gabi Break the Universe Carlos Hernandez
How did a raw chicken get inside Yasmany's locker? When Sal Vidon meets Gabi Real for the first time, it isn't under the best of circumstances. Sal is in the principal's office for the third time in three days, and it's still the first week of school. Gabi, student council president and editor of the school paper, is there to support her friend Yasmany, who just picked a fight with Sal. She is determined to prove that somehow, Sal planted a raw chicken in Yasmany's locker, even though nobody saw him do it and the bloody poultry has since mysteriously disappeared. Sal prides himself on being an excellent magician, but for this sleight of hand, he relied on a talent no one would guess . . . except maybe Gabi, whose sharp eyes never miss a trick. When Gabi learns that he's capable of conjuring things much bigger than a chicken--including his dead mother--and she takes it all in stride, Sal knows that she is someone he can work with. There's only one slight problem: their manipulation of time and space could put the entire universe at risk. A sassy entropy sweeper, a documentary about wedgies, a principal who wears a Venetian bauta mask, and heaping platefuls of Cuban food are just some of the delights that await in his mind-blowing novel gift-wrapped in love and laughter.
The Friendship War Andrew Clements
Stickers, Silly Bandz, Rainbow Looms, fidget spinners . . . buttons?! A brand-new school story about friendship and fads from the bestselling author of Frindle.
This is war. Okay--that's too dramatic.
But no matter what this is called, so far I'm winning.
And it feels wonderful.
Grace and Ellie have been best friends since second grade. Ellie's always right in the center of everything--and Grace is usually happy to be Ellie's sidekick. But what happens when everything changes? This time it's Grace who suddenly has everyone's attention when she accidentally starts a new fad at school. It's a fad that has first her class, then her grade, and then the entire school collecting and trading and even fighting over . . . buttons?! A fad that might also get her in major trouble and could even be the end of Grace and Ellie's friendship. Because Ellie's not used to being one-upped by anybody. There's only one thing for Grace to do. With the help of Hank--the biggest button collector in the sixth grade--she will have to figure out a way to end the fad once and for all. But once a fad starts, can it be stopped?
Andrew Clements, the beloved author of Frindle, returns with a deliciously entertaining and deeply satisfying story that will resonate with anyone who's ever been in a classroom . . . or been a kid. A fad is a tough thing to kill, but then again, so is a friendship.
Smile Raina Telgemeier
Raina just wants to be a normal sixth grader. But one night after Girl Scouts she trips and falls, severely injuring her two front teeth, and what follows is a long and frustrating journey with on-again, off-again braces, surgery, embarrassing headgear, and even a retainer with fake teeth attached. And on top of all that, there’s still more to deal with: a major earthquake, boy confusion, and friends who turn out to be not so friendly. This coming-of-age true story is sure to resonate with anyone who has ever been in middle school, and especially those who have ever had a bit of their own dental drama.
New Kid Jerry Craft
Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life. But instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics, where Jordan is one of the few kids of color in his entire grade.
As he makes the daily trip from his Washington Heights apartment to the upscale Riverdale Academy Day School, Jordan soon finds himself torn between two worlds—and not really fitting into either one. Can Jordan learn to navigate his new school culture while keeping his neighborhood friends and staying true to himself?
Positively Izzy Terri Libenson
Award-winning comics creator and author of the bestselling Invisible Emmie Terri Libenson returns with a companion graphic novel that captures the drama, angst, and humor of middle-school life. Perfect for fans of Raina Telgemeier, Jennifer Holm, and Victoria Jamieson. Middle school is all about labels. Izzy is the dreamer. There’s nothing Izzy loves more than acting in skits and making up funny stories. The downside? She can never quite focus enough to get her schoolwork done. Bri is the brain. But she wants people to see there’s more to her than just a report card full of As. At the same time, she wishes her mom would accept her the way she is and stop bugging her to “break out of her shell” and join drama club. The girls’ lives converge in unexpected ways on the day of a school talent show, which turns out to be even more dramatic than either Bri or Izzy could have imagined.
The Pigeon Has to Go to School Mo Williems
Why does the Pigeon have to go to school? He already knows everything! And what if he doesn't like it? What if the teacher doesn't like him? What if he learns TOO MUCH!?!
Ask not for whom the school bell rings; it rings for the Pigeon!
Sorry, Grown-ups, You Can't Go to School! Christina Geist
It's just another school morning...until Mom, Dad, Grandma, and even Bow-wow the dog BEG the kids to let them come to school, too! Dad can tie his own shoes--why can't he come? Mom is all ready with her brand-new backpack--she's allowed, right? No! Only kids and teachers!
Christina Geist's warm, interactive story is the perfect tool for parents of kids who are reluctant or nervous about going to school. The fun refrain--"Sorry, grown-ups! You can't go to school! Only kids and teachers! Only kids and teachers!"--brilliantly paints school as something exclusive and desirable...which kids can access! Tim Bowers's lively illustrations enhance the fun and heighten the hilarity. This is sure to be a back-to-school classic in many families and classrooms!
The King of Kindergarten Derrick Barnes
A confident little boy takes pride in his first day of kindergarten.
The morning sun blares through your window like a million brass trumpets.It sits and shines behind your head--like a crown. Mommy says that today, you are going to be the King of Kindergarten!
Starting kindergarten is a big milestone--and the hero of this story is ready to make his mark! He's dressed himself, eaten a pile of pancakes, and can't wait to be part of a whole new kingdom of kids. The day will be jam-packed, but he's up to the challenge, taking new experiences in stride with his infectious enthusiasm! And afterward, he can't wait to tell his proud parents all about his achievements--and then wake up to start another day.
Hannah Sparkles: Hooray for The First Day of School Robin Mellom
Cheer along with Hannah Sparkles on her first day of school!
Hannah Sparkles and her best friend, Sunny Everbright, are ready for first grade. Their day starts as perfect as pom-poms...until Hannah and Sunny are seated far apart in the classroom. Even worse, Hannah is having trouble making new friends.
It will take some extra thinking for Hannah to learn that sometimes being a good listener is the best way to be a good friend.
Perfect for fans of Fancy Nancy and Pinkalicious, Hannah Sparkles’s second story is sure to bring sparkly smiles to new readers who are just starting school too.
How Not to Start Third Grade Cathy Hapka
Will should be excited to start third grade. But his little brother, Steve, is starting kindergarten. The same laugh-out-loud writing and hilarious illustrations that brought us How Not to Babysit Your Brother now portray the tribulations and embarrassments of starting school with a very troublesome little brother. School will never be the same!Cathy Hapka and Ellen Titlebaum are the authors of many books for children. This is their second book about Will and Steve. They live in Lincoln University, Pennsylvania, and New York City, respectively.Debbie Palen has illustrated many books for children, including How Not to Babysit Your Brother and the first four books in the Andrew Lost series. She lives in Cleveland, Ohio.