So many amazing middle grade books were published in 2019! It’s so refreshing to see middle grade taking on big issues. The books above address familiar topics such as friendship, family, first love, and loss. They also take on immigration, gender identity, mental health, LGBTQ, and racism. You’ll find out my favorites when the Cybil finalists are announced in January. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the ones I read this week (pictured above).
Call Down the Hawk is Stephen King’s The Stand for young adults. In this world there are dreamers, people who can make dreams a literal reality and the dreamed, people and animals who the dreamers have brought to life. But those who can foresee the future see the end of the world coming from a dreamer so the hunters have been brought in to kill the dreamers before that can happen and once a dreamer dies, those dreamed fall into an endless sleep. The story is complex and told in multiple voices. I can’t wait until the next one.
This powerful story by Neal Shusterman brings to life his own son’s experience with mental illness in a way that will have you rooting for him both in the real world and in the world he has created in his mind.