Middle-Grade Books Publishing in April 2024

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I’m late. I had every intention of getting this post up at the end of March…but here we are…April 3rd…late, late, late. The good news is, that most of the books I am going to be sharing today haven’t actually published yet…so in a way I guess that makes me still on time? Let’s roll with that option. Anyway…getting ALL of that out of the way…I am so excited for the Middle-Grade Books that are publishing in April! There are SO many incredible books coming…I think you will love them! Let’s chat!

The Mystery of Locked Rooms by Lindsay Currie

First up we have The Mystery of Locked Rooms by Lindsay Currie. This book published on April 2nd and I am happy to report that I had a chance to read an early copy and it was FAN-TASTIC! If you have a kiddo that loves puzzles and escape rooms…this is a must read. I will have a full review coming soon but this was such a fun read and had so much heart. If you loved Willy Wonka, The Goonies, or Mr.Lemoncello’s Library…you are definitely going to want to add The Mystery of Locked Rooms to your TBR!

Goodreads Synopsis

Crack the codes. Find the treasure. Escape the house. From the acclaimed author of Scritch Scratch and What Lives in the Woods comes a action-packed adventure novel about three friends who team up to find a hidden treasure in an abandoned 1950’s funhouse.

Twelve-year-old Sarah Greene wants nothing more from her seventh-grade year than to beat the hardest escape room left in her town with her best friends, West, and Hannah. But when a foreclosure notice shows up on Sarah’s front door, everything changes. Since her father became ill two years ago, things have been bad, but not lose your house bad…until now.  Sarah feels helpless until the day Hannah mentions a treasure rumored to be hidden in the walls of an abandoned funhouse.

According to legend, Hans, Stefan, and Karl Stein were orphaned at eight years old and lived with different families until they were able to reunite as adults. Their dream was to build the most epic funhouse in existence. They wanted their experience to be more than mirror mazes and optical illusions, so they not only created elaborate riddles and secret passages, but they also claimed to have hidden a treasure inside the funhouse. 

Once in, Sarah, West, and Hannah realize the house is unlike any escape room they’ve attempted. There are challenges, yes, but they feel personal. Like the triplets knew who would get in. It seems impossible, but so does everything about the house. As soon as they’re in she immediately worries that attempting the funhouse is a bad idea but Sarah has no choice but to continue, since her future is at stake.

Keeping Pace by Laurie Morrison

Next up we have Keeping Pace by Laurie Morrison. Publishing on April 9th, this is another fantastic middle-grade book that I had a chance to preview! I would classify this one as more of an upper-middle grade book just because it does talk about crushes and kissing and things that some 8 year olds may not have any interest in. This was such an endearing and heartfelt book. I love that it dealt with both winning and failing. It was a wonderful story about drive, focus, and the evolution of friendships!

Goodreads Synopsis

Laurie Morrison’s Keeping Pace is a poignant middle-grade novel about friends-turned-rivals training for a half-marathon—and rethinking what it means to win and what they mean to each other.

Grace has been working for years to beat her former friend Jonah Perkins’s GPA so she can be named top scholar of the eighth grade. But when Jonah beats her for the title, it feels like none of Grace’s academic accomplishments have really mattered. They weren’t enough to win—or to impress her dad. And then the wide, empty summer looms. With nothing planned and no more goals or checklists, she doesn’t know what she’s supposed to be working toward.

Eager for something to occupy her days, Grace signs up for a half-marathon race that she and Jonah used to talk about running together. Jonah’s running it, too. Maybe if she can beat Jonah on race day, she’ll feel OK again. But as she begins training with Jonah and checking off a new list of summer goals, she starts to question what—and who—really matters to her. Is winning at all costs really worth it?

Engaging and heartfelt, Keeping Pace is about wanting to win at all costs—and having to learn how to fail.

The Night War by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

Also publishing on April 9th we have The Night War by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley. I have a copy of this book on the way for review and I can’t wait to read it. Kimberly Brubaker Bradley is the author of The War That Saved My Life and I absolutely adored that book. I am such a huge fan of Historical Fiction…and Middle-Grade Historical Fiction just might be my favorite. I have a feeling this one is going to be a huge hit. Stay tuned for a review!

Goodreads Synopsis

From the two-time Newbery Honor-winning author of The War That Saved My Life and Fighting Words comes a middle grade novel set at the border between freedom and fear in World War II France, at the Chateau de Chenonceau, where a Jewish girl who has lost everything but her life must decide whether to risk even that to bring others to freedom.

“We don’t choose how we feel, but we choose how we act.”

It’s 1942. German Nazis occupy much of France. And twelve-year-old Miriam, who is Jewish, is not safe. With help and quick thinking, Miri is saved from the roundup that takes her entire Jewish neighborhood. She escapes Paris, landing in a small French village, where the spires of the famous Chateau de Chenonceau rise high into the sky, its bridge across the River Cher like a promise, a fairy tale.

But Miri’s life is no fairy tale. Her parents are gone—maybe alive, maybe not. Taken in at the boarding school near the chateau, pretending to be Catholic to escape Nazi capture, Miri is called upon one night to undertake a deadly task, one that spans the castle grounds, its bridge, and the very border to freedom. Here is her chance to escape—hopefully to find her parents. But will she take it? One thing is certain: The person Miri meets that night will save her life. And the person Miri becomes that night could save the lives of many more.

In her return to the era of The War that Saved My Life and The War I Finally Won, Kimberly Brubaker Bradley brings a new and different story, one with a mystical twist, that explores a little-known slice of World War II history, a highly unusual friendship, and the power of choosing courage even when—especially when—there are no good choices to be had.

The Secret Language of Birds by Lynne Kelly

This book had me at the cover. Stunning. Gorgeous. Chefs Kiss. Oh, and I am also a huge bird nerds so this is an immediate add to cart situation. The Secret Language of Birds by Lynne Kelly publishes on April 9th and I absolutely cannot wait to read it. Lynne Kelly is the author of the incredible Song for a Whale and this book promises to be just as incredible. I love that it deals with endangered birds…such an important topic to teach our kids about.

Goodreads Synopsis

From the award-winning author of Song for a Whale comes a poignant and heartwarming tale about a girl who discovers a pair of endangered birds about to lay eggs in the marshes of her summer camp…and the secret plan she hatches to help them.

Nina is used to feeling like the odd one out, both at school and in her large family. But while trying to fit in at summer camp, she discovers something even more two majestic birds have built a nest in the marsh behind an abandoned infirmary. They appear to be whooping cranes, but that’s impossible—Nina is an amateur bird-watcher, and all her resources tell her that those rare birds haven’t nested in Texas for over a hundred years.

When Nina reports the sighting to wildlife officials, more questions arise. Experts track all the endangered birds, but they can’t identify the female bird that Nina found. Who is she, and where did she come from?

With the help of some fellow campers, Nina sets out to discover who the mystery bird really is. As she gets closer to the truth, will she find a flock of her own?

This instant classic from award-winning author Lynne Kelly captures the coming-of-age moment of learning to spread your wings in a way you’ll never forget.

Tree. Table. Book. by Lois Lowry

I am so smitten with this book and I haven’t even read it yet. I absolutely adore intergenerational stories and Tree. Table. Book. by Lois Lowry sounds absolutely fantastic. I fell in love with the cover of this book and the story inside sounds so heartwarming, sweet, and full of friendship. I have always loved Lois Lowry’s books so I am so excited to read this! Tree. Table. Book. publishes on April 23rd!

Goodreads Synopsis

Everyone knows the two Sophies are best friends. One is in elementary school, and one is . . . well . . . in a little trouble of late. She’s elderly, sure, but she’s always been on her game, the best friend any girl struggling to fit in could ever have.

The Sophies drink tea, have strong opinions about pretty much everything, and love each other dearly. Now it seems the elder Sophie is having memory problems, burning teakettles, and forgetting just about everything. It looks like her son is going to come and get her and steal her away forever.

Young Sophie isn’t having that. Not one bit. So she sets out to help elder Sophie’s memory, with the aid of her neighborhood friends Ralphie and Oliver. But when she opens the floodgates of elder Sophie’s memories, she winds up listening to stories that will illustrate just how much there is to know about her dear friend, stories of war, hunger, cruelty, and ultimately love.

Happy Reading!

Ok, so here are the books that I am most looking forward to…now…what books are YOU most excited for?

Last month I shared that one of the books that I was most excited to read was Olivetti. Well, I am happy to report that I had a chance to read it and it was even better than I had hoped for. You can read my review here! It has become a new favorite Middle-Grade book!

I hope you all have a great month!

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