Reading in the new year

As January begins to unfurl and we all return to school (hopefully) refreshed and ready to tackle the second half of the school year, I wonder if anyone else is left in this odd sense of reading purgatory. I love compiling “Best of 2015” lists at the end of the year (and blogged about it here), and of course, I also love hearing about and reading brand new books anytime of the year. But January, for me, is the trickiest reading month because I am trying to both read the best books from the previous year (especially in anticipation of the ALA Youth Media Awards next week) and stay on top of new releases.

Since I’ve already written about the former, I thought I’d share with you some new books coming out in the next few months that I’m looking forward to. This is a completely subjective list based on my favorite authors, personal interests, student influences, and starred reviews (found on this excellent spreadsheet here). I’ve linked to the Goodreads profile of each book so that you can read summaries, reviews, etc. (and so that you can be spared my giddy ramblings of why I already heart these books). Please share your own in the comments!

beafriendBe a Friend by Salina Yoon
Hardcover, 40 pages
Expected publication: January 5, 2016 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens

Mr. Lemoncello’s Library Olympics by Chris Grabensteinmrlemoncello
Hardcover, 288 pages
Expected publication: January 5, 2016 by Random House Books for Young Readers

frankencrayonFrankencrayon by Michael Hall
Hardcover, 40 pages
Expected publication: January 26, 2016 by Greenwillow Books

paxPax by Sara Pennypacker
Hardcover, 304 pages
Expected publication: February 2, 2016 by Balzer + Bray

saltotheseaSalt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys
Hardcover, 400 pages
Expected publication: February 2, 2016 by Philomel Books

princessinblackThe Princess in Black and the Hungry Bunny Horde by Shannon and Dean Hale
Hardcover, 96 pages
Expected publication: February 9, 2016 by Candlewick Press

amulet7Amulet 7: Firelight by Kazu Kibuishi
Paperback, 208 pages
Expected publication: February 23, 2016 by GRAPHIX

keytoextraordinaryThe Key to Extraordinary by Natalie Lloyd
Hardcover, 240 pages
Expected publication: February 23, 2016 by Scholastic Press

maybeafoxMaybe a Fox by Kathi Appelt
Hardcover, 272 pages
Expected publication: March 8, 2016 by Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books

 by Kwame Alexander
Hardcover, 320 pages
Expected publication: April 5, 2016 by HMH Books for Young Readers

What are you looking forward to reading/purchasing this year?

Edited to add: On the heels of my post, School Library Journal publishes a gorgeous 16-page pdf of upcoming releases here – Happy browsing!

6 thoughts on “Reading in the new year

  1. What a nice mix. I usually just pick up what is on the new release cart and am very haphazard about my reading. That’s so embarrassing to say! I should be more methodical. You are very inspirational.


  2. I would love to print out the spreadsheet at the bottom, but it’s view-only. Is there some way you can enable it so it’s printable?


    • Eva, I am not the owner of the spreadsheet, and in fact, I can’t remember where I found it, but I am grateful to whoever keeps it up as it is extremely useful!

  3. I’m always trying to better organize my TBR pile! For those of us serving teens – I currently sit on the advisory board for one of YALSA’s blogs, The Hub, and so here is a shamelessly biased plug: each year, I participate in the Hub Reading Challenge; it starts in February, after the ALA Youth Media Awards have been announced, and runs until June. It creates a nice community of YA librarians and enthusiasts all connecting over the same titles, and takes the pressure off me feeling like I should have already read all the award winners; whatever I didn’t get to (or didn’t predict!), I can put towards my Reading Challenge total. The Morris and Nonfiction finalists are all also eligible for an earlier challenge that runs up until the Youth Media Awards are announced, so that usually dominates my early-January reading. That challenge is described here: and the Hub Reading Challenge will be announced and posted about regularly on the Hub:

    • Thanks for sharing, Carly! I love participating in reading challenges and Mock Award groups, too. Goodreads is my go-to spot for all that and more. There are active groups for Mock Caldecott, Mock Newbery, and Mock Printz – and I’m sure others!

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